Firstprizebears Very Brown, Laura

The capital of a successful breeding kennel are the bitches. “Laura” is INT Nl. Belg. Lux. Dt VDH-CZ-Polish-Slovenian Champion and Worldwinner Firstprizebears Very Brown born on 22.09.1997 and celebrating her 10th anniversary. Time for this extraordinary bitch to place her into the spotlight.

Why extraordinary???

Because she is the mother of four litters? In itself nothing special! But from these 4 litters 16 champions where made up. Some still on their way to the title, so her tally of champion offspring can only grow. Many will think that this is a coincidence. Let me tell you that this is not the case, but a matter of logic sence of know-how in breeding.

The capital of a successful breeding kennel is the bitches! They should be of high quality and be descended from inbred lines. The pedigree of your bitch should be like a open book to you. Ideally you should have a photographs of each dog that appears in a six-generation pedigree and it would be even better if you had seen these dogs and been able to assess their strengths and weaknesses. It is an absolute necessity for each breeder to follow the bearded collie scene very closely. Which male is going well with certain bitches and vice versa, which bitch is giving top quality offspring? And your observations should not stop at the borders of your country!

English yearbooks are a wonderful source of information to become familiar with pedigrees. An even bigger source is the Swedish bearded collie database. A true goldmine on information.

The first problem breeders have, is that they have too high opinions about their bitches and do not have the knowledge of what is behind the pedigree of their girls, or even worse don´t know many of these dogs. This is a problem.

Lauras secret of success.

Back to “Laura”: Please let me explain why I think that her success comes from logic rather than from luck. The central thread, that keeps coming up in this success story is called “GB Ch. Pepperland Lyric John at Potterdale” and his famous son “Ch. Shilstone Choir Boy” (himself father of 67 Champion children), simply the ultimate beardie.

It is not only the name, but it is this type of bearded collie that I like to see. The ultimate goal for me is to breed a dog like Lyric John or Shilstone Choir Boy.

“Laura” has 11 litterbrothers and sisters, five were used for breeding – in four different nations. Laura comes out of a close linebreeding. Her father, Firstprizebears Emerson, is out of a halfbrother/sister mating to “Ch. Potterdale Serenade”.

Her mother, “Ch. Firstprizebears Hilary Clinton”, also came out of a very successful litter of 11 puppies, of which 5 became champion. Hilary was linebred on Ch. Potterdale Prelude and Ch. Potterdale Serenade, who on their turn are connected to Lyric John. The litter of “Lauras” father was repeated in 2000. Again dogs where used for breeding and 2 became a Champion.

This much about her parents. How important the pedigree of your brood bitches should have become. It is also of utmost importance, that you should stick to a line of which you say: this is it and is according to the standard. Besides the outer identification marks, the character is of great importance. I prefer beardies with a well balanced state of mind, who act like little rogues. Nervous, afraid and insecure beardies are not at all what I want to see. They should be a real Beardie-personality.

“Laura” has made an impressive show career, as you could read above. She is and was, by nature, a real brown lady. When all black beardies are walking on the left, she walks on the right. They say that brown beardies are different. I can only confirm this. She is always cheerful and together with her famous brother “Vancouver” an unbeatable team. She has the will to please her people. Her herding instinct was notoriously known by our 5 sheep. She has this unendless depth, unfathomable look in her wonderful brown eyes. I just get tears in my eyes, just like that. On the otherhand she can make you uncertain when using her questionmark face.

In plain words: a dream beardie!

A dream came true.

Finally in 2001 my long kept dream came true and I finally had the right bitch “Laura”, to fly over to the United States for a mating.

Eur FCI 03 + 04 + 05-NL-B-SK-CZ-Lux-D-VDH-UK & INT Ch. Firstprizebears Apache
Eur FCI 03 + 04 + 05-NL-B-SK-CZ-Lux-D-VDH-UK & INT Ch. Firstprizebears Apache

Her dream partner was the than almost 12 year old Ch. Windfiddler Still Cruisin. He himself a topwinner and also a topproducer. I had him already for a long time in mind. “Windfiddler Still Cruisin” is also linebred on “Ch. Pepperland Lyric John”. The result was a litter of 10 puppies, six became champion, nine were used for breeding in six different nations. The most famous of them all is the GB-Champion and Crufts winner Ch. “Firstprizebears Apache”.

Again it should be clear to you that this has nothing to do with luck (you always need that) or coincidence, but on a system. I have pointed that out before.

Famous children in other litters.

In 2002 “Laura” was mated to Ch. “Double Scottch Jolly Joker”, who on his turn goes back via Lauras father to “Firstprizebears Emerson” and “Firstprizebears Eminence”. The result: 10 puppies, five where used for breeding and four became champion.

In 2003 “Laura” was mated in the UK to Top producer GB Ch. “Gillaber Drummond”. His pedigree goes back to Ch. Potterdale Conclusion, who on his turn goes back to Lyric John. Eight puppies were born, of which A L L where used for breeding and six became champion sofar. One bitch is on her way to the title.

“Laura’s” last litter in 2005 was extra- special. We “loaned” her to Wendy Hines in the United Kingdom. Wendy mated her with “Gillaber Drummond”- son , GB Ch. “Diotima Seawolf at Ramsgrove”. He on his turn also has a connecting thread in his pedigree via Ch. Potterdale Conclusion to Ch. Pepperland Lyric John. This litter by Laura and Tolly had nine puppies, four have been used for breeding sofar and males in America and Australia are already champions. Two dogs in the UK are winning consistently and have both won BIS at breed club shows..

Inbreeding as a recipe of success.

I would like to express that in case of this line- breeding you can not simply speak of an inbred pattern, otherwise you would not have such big litters and the bitches would not give a smooth birth and raise their puppies so easily. “Lauras” children also have proven themselves as perfect producers with champion offspring. Laura was a superb bitch for breeding, who by instinct, exactly knew what to do. This natural instict she passed on to her children. My Aspen, Lauras daughter, would, if I would allow her, dig a hole in the ground and give birth to puppies. All by herself!. Laura’s sons are very good stud dogs, who only do their job if the lady of their dreams has the moment surpreme. All aspects are of high importance, and should never ever be neglected.

As with all successess, the vitality is of utmost importance (read longliving, healthy beardies who still own a herding instinct ). As long as all these gifts are inherited by the dogs, everything is perfect.

Know one’s limits

Ofcourse you can only pass on close breeding to a certain extent. Someone should mix an established line with something new. However, the type should be similar. In cases where I use a male who is an outcroos to my bitch I take care to ensure he himself is very well line bred. So that he can inherit his type.
People, who come to visit and look at the puppies, often say, “all your puppies are looking the same”. This is a big compliment, meaning that I am successful in keeping the type I like so much.

Many find, in the pedigree of their dog, some champion in the 5th generation and want to breed to this dog. Forget it. It will not work. Most characteristics will disappear after the 3rd generation. The pedigree is like a puzzle, where all pieces together form the complete picture. The pieces should be like little diamonds. A diamond surrounded by rocks will never be a piece of art.

No Imagination

Success in breeding and succes at shows has nothing to do with magic, although you need a certain amount of luck. Therefore it is essential, to know your own breeding stock. Only then you will produce puppies with success and not just another litter.

Every litter you want to bred should be of high quality. It doesn’t matter if you want to keep something or not! Time, Costs and Effort should not keep you away in reaching your target. But all beginning should start with the bitch. This is your capital. Only with a super Beardielady you will start a succesful breeding.