While many dog breeders admit they rely on intuition to produce a successful litter, the role of genetics and information in the production of a quality litter cannot be overlooked.

Genetic diseases are among the most serious hazards and most difficult challenges dog breeders face today. Also, as a breeder, it is important to understand the underlying motives that influence your decisions. Is one ready to open the gene pool to unwanted conditions in the pursuit of physical perfection ? How to compromise between breeding to the Standard and producing healthy animals ? A succesful breeder needs to understand how to apply genetic principles to his breeding program and refine the selection process by improving his eye for type.

Understanding the modes of inheritance, knowing how to conduct and analyze test matings and how to lower the chances of producing affected animals are the prerequisites to producing healthy, functional and beautiful puppies. The following books are intended to help dog breeders everywhere avoid the pitfalls they are almost destined to encounter.

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Dog Breeding as a Fine Art
by Amy Fernandez
Paperback: 240 p. Publisher: Ltd. Editions Media (2002)
This practical handbook for succesful dog breeding explains how to recognize and avoid common pitfalls, how to refine the selection process by improving your eye for type, how to apply genetic principles to your breeding program and  how to use creative thinking skills to resolve difficult problems. more information:

Genetics for Dog Breeders
by Roy Robinson Hardcover: 280 pages
Butterworth-Heinemann; 2nd ed. (Dec 1, 1999)
This new edition provides the findings of one more decade of  investigation into the genetics of dog breeding. Chapters outline basic principles of heredity. Also discusses methods of animal improvement, in addition to color and coat variation, genetics of breeds, and abnormalities. More information
Genetics: An Introduction for Dog Breeders
by Jackie Isabell
Paperback: 322 p. Publ: Alpine Blue Ribbon Books (2002)
The author provides a comprehensive yet easy to understand guide to the nature of heredity and explains how she has applied genetic science to her own breeding program. Using terminology suitable for non-scientists, she covers the nature of the species, the nature of heredity, the application of genetics to specific breeds,  how to control genetic disorders, and the art of breed selection.  Intended to help breeders understand how to avoid passing on common hereditary problems, such as eye and skeletal disorders, from generation to generation. more information:

Canine Terminology (Dogwise Classics)
by Harold R. Spira Hardcover: 147 pages
Dogwise Publishing; Reprint edition (2002)
A classic available again! A beautifully illustrated glossary of ALL terms used in the Breed Standards for purebred dogs worldwide. Terms are clearly defined, with reference to specific breeds where the term is used, and most are illustrated with detailed pen & ink drawings by Mary & Peggy Davidson. For all those involved in the sport of purebred dogs at any level - breeders, exhibitors (conformation, agility, obedience, etc.), judges, etc.
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Genetic diseases are among the most serious hazards today's dog breeders face. Dr. Padgett provides tools, techniques and tables to allow breeders to analyze their pedigrees and make informed decisions regarding prospective matings in an effort to control disease occurrence. He also outlines steps breed clubs and breeders can take towards using Open Registries as a means of gathering data needed to determine the mode of inheritance for genetic diseases affecting their breed. Tables, diagrams and graphs further enhance the text to facilitate understanding.
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Control of Canine Genetic Diseases
by George A. Padgett (Author)
Hardcover: 256 p. Publisher: Howell Book House (1998)
The Genetic Connection: A Guide to Health Problems in Purebred Dogs by Lowell Ackerman. Paperback: 278 p. Pub: Amer Animal Hospital Assn (1999)
For the veterinary practitioner and the serious breeder, The Genetic Connection covers more than 240 genetic disorders, including how they are genetically transmitted in different breeds, how they are best identified, and strategies to help prevent them from occurring in future generations. The book is cross-referenced by both condition within bodily systems and by breed. It includes an in-depth index and table of breeds, along with a detailed bibliography of supporting articles and texts. An appendix of the major players in canine genetics completes this substantial publication. more information:

Breeding Better Dogs  by Carlo Battaglia
Library Binding: 192 p. Publ: Battaglia Enterprises (1990)
The text focuses on the fundamental aspects of producing better dogs. It was written for those interested in upgrading their stock and producing quality animals. The author anticipates the type of information that most breeders need and presents it in a clear and easy-to-understand style. Some of the unique methods which have proven to be of great value are the color charts and stick dog figures that are designed to help breeders plan their future breeding on paper to see what they are likely to produce. The pedigree charts and stick dog illustrations provide an easy method for interpreting the pedigrees of potential dams and sires, and for predicting the qualities in their expected litters. more information:

Dog Genetics: How to Breed Better Dogs
by Carlo Battaglia
Hardcover. Publisher: TFH Publications; (November 1978)
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The Inheritance of Coat Color in Dogs
by Clarence Cook, Little
Hardcover. Publisher: John Wiley & Sons Inc; (1979)
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The Natural History of Inbreeding and Outbreeding : Theoretical and Empirical Perspectives by Nancy Wilmsen Thornhill  (Editor)
Paperback: 584 pages
University of Chicago Press; (August 15, 1993)
Inbreeding, the mating of close kin, and outbreeding, the mating of distant relatives or unrelated organisms, have long been important subjects to evolutionary biologists. Inbreeding reduces genetic diversity in a population, increasing the likelihood that genetic defects will become widespread and deprive a population of the diversity it may need to cope with its environment. However, today many endangered species exist only in small, very isolated populations where inbreeding is unavoidable, so it has become a concern for conservationists. In this volume, twenty-six experts in evolution, behavior, and genetics examine the causes and consequences of inbreeding. The studies, including theoretical and empirical work on wild and captive populations, demonstrate that many plants and animals inbreed to a greater extent than biologists have thought, with variable effects on individual fitness. more information:
Canine genetics for dog breeders
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