Thursday, December 28, 2006

when will they design smarter humans?

it may be best that i lay low because this story in the new york times discusses the designer dog trend in japan where it has taken off with a vengeance with people seeking one-of-a-kind dogs, often with tragic consequences for the dogs who are often inbred and euthanized for imperfections.

Indeed, many of these buyers want dogs they can show off like proud parents. They are willing to pay top yen, with rarer dogs fetching higher prices. Coveted traits like a blue-tinged coat are often the result of recessive genes, which can determine appearance only when combined with another recessive gene. Inbreeding is a quick way to bring out recessive traits, as dogs carrying the gene are repeatedly mated with their own offspring, enhancing the trait over successive generations. When done carefully, some types of inbreeding are safe. But in Japan, all too many breeders throw aside caution in search of a quick profit, experts in the business say. In these cases, for every dog born with prized colors, many more appear with defects, also the product of recessive genes.

the carnage is pretty appalling:

One is Keika, a deaf 1-year-old female dachshund with eyes that wander aimlessly. Her breeder was originally selling her for about $7,500 because she is half-white, a rare trait in dachshunds.

“That is an unnatural color, like a person with blue skin,” Mr. Sasaki said.

The breeder told Mr. Sasaki that he had bred a dog with three generations of offspring — in human terms, first with its daughter, then a granddaughter and then a great-granddaughter — until Keika was born. The other four puppies in the litter were so hideously deformed that they were killed right after birth.

A sad stories of dogs being, once again, the victims of human hubris and stupidity. It's funny that people feel they have to somehow breed a one of a kind dog. Every dog I've met has been unique with its own personality, quirks, and beauty. Purebred, puremutt and everything in between we all have something to offer. Why do you have to tamper with our natural awesomeness? Sigh. For this reason we have to keep the amazing corgador a well-kept secret (between you, me, and the rest of the internets!). And, in return I will keep secret the magical world of the terrierists (WTFs, Chickendales, and even Doofuses!), boo-dogs, scotsman poets, sister ethels and all of my internets friends. Nature's most perfect creations must remain hidden lest we fall victim to the latest fad. No, a big-headed, strong-willed, sturdy in body and character dog like me is one of the world's best kept secret and let's keep it that way! Let the Paris Hiltons of the world carry around rats in their purses and we dogs, perfect in our imperfections, will remain popular with the naked apes for love us for who we are.

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Blogger Joe Stains said...

we can never let the secret of the doofus's out, the world would be over run with fat log dogs who annoy the CRAP out of their brothers!!!

11:55 AM  
Blogger Gus said...

You Go Wally!

12:33 PM  
Blogger the jess said...

I saw this in the Times this morning and thought of you. Each day brings in new evidence of the Great Oppressor's folly and I must say it is depressing. They are always trying to make things better which inevitably makes them worse. I have to say that mutts are the answer...

9:49 PM  
Blogger Sid the Dog said...

Freakin' beta Blogger made me put that last comment under the Great Oppressor's handle. It's me, not the Great Oppressor!

9:58 PM  
Blogger wally said...


i know those naked apes, always trying to pretend they're us. sheesh.


7:55 AM  

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