AKC Registers Mixed-Breeds

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The American Kennel Club (AKC) not only registers purebred dogs, but also mixed-breeds. In some cases they have registered mixed-breeds as purebred dogs, and they still do.

To be sure that you acquire a purebred Labrador, which would enable you to take part in every official Labrador competition, you should check the website of the AKC-parent club of the Labrador Retriever, the Labrador Retriever Club, Inc.

This is what the LRC has to say about so-called “silver”, “champagne” and “charcoal” “Labradors”:

BUYER BEWARE! TRUE LABRADOR RETRIEVERS ARE BLACK, YELLOW, AND CHOCOLATE ONLY!

Click here to visit the LRC page.

Further more, since not all “Labradors” sold by dilute breeders actually are affected by the dilute gene, but do carry the dilute gene (these dogs are called “silver-factored”, “charcoal-factored” or “champagne-factored” and will pass the gene on to their offspring), we advise you to demand a dilute test of both parents. The only acceptable test-result is D/D (clear).

Jack Vanderwyk,
July 2015

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How Reliable is a U.K. Kennel Club Pedigree Certificate?

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This “silver” dog is Dreamcoat Silver Destiny, a British Kennel Club registered “Labrador”. Destiny was registered, without any breeding restrictions, as a “chocolate Labrador”. She was born in 2011, in London, so Caroline Kisko, the Kennel Club Secretary who signed the pedigree certificate in 2013, could have walked up there to see for herself how “purebred” this bitch is.

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Dreamcoat advertise a litter from Dreamcoat Silver Destiny on the internet. “Rare Silver, Charcoal, Champagne Labrador Puppies. £1,500. (…) For full breeding rights £3000 to approved breeders only. Ready to leave at 8 weeks old from 14th July.”
So, Dreamcoat are pretty sure these silver, charcoal and champagne “Labrador” puppies will be fully registered by The Kennel Club, and right they are, because they’ve pulled this stunt many times before. Hundreds of their diluted mutts are out here, in the United Kingdom, the Land of the Labrador Retriever, registered by the K.C. as purebred Labs.

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This is the sire of the Dreamcoat litter: Horizon’s Warden of Pembroke (Import USA). Registered as black, but clearly a charcoal dog.

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This is the K.C.’s pedigree certificate of Horizon’s Warden of Pembroke, signed by Caroline Kisko, the Secretary of The Kennel Club. (Click pedigree to enlarge.)

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And this is the pedigree of the silver bitch Dreamcoat Silver Destiny on top of the page. Registered as chocolate and signed by Caroline Kisko, the Secretary of The Kennel Club. (Click pedigree to enlarge.)

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This is how The Kennel Club is helping the dilute breeders in the United Kingdom. If you register a litter online and you have to select the colours of each puppy, the K.C. warns you which colours are NOT RECOGNISED BY KC, so you can simply pick another colour. Since not a single soul in The Kennel Club is interested in which dogs of which colours you register with them, despite everything we’ve written about these practices in the past four years, these breeders of dilutes just laugh at The Kennel Club’s greed and power driven infantilism.

So I ask you, how reliable is a U.K. Kennel Club Pedigree Certificate, signed by Caroline Kesko?

Jack Vanderwyk,
June 2015

UPDATE 18 JUNE 2015

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Today I found the litter of Horizon’s Warden of Pembroke and Dreamcoat Silver Destiny on the KC’s website. To my surprise the entire litter was registered as ‘Not KC Recognised”, some as “silver”, some as “charcoal”.

How significant is this for the Labrador breed?
Let me remind you of a silver bitch called Maartje’s Silver Thunder (Import USA). She was registered in the United Kingdom as “Non Recognized Colour”. Nonetheless, she was allowed to produce 86 puppies between February 2007 and October 2010. An impressive 77 of them were also registered as “Non Recognised Colour”, but 9 of them were registered as “Chocolate”, without any restrictions. This offspring in turn produced hundreds of puppies, most of them “Non Recognised Colour”, others registered as “Chocolate”. Which means that you could acquire a “Labrador” in the United Kingdom whose (great)-(grand)parents were dilutes and “Non Recognised Colour”, while the dog in question has no restrictions whatsoever and could foul the Labrador bloodlines completely unnoticed.

The only way the Kennel Clubs of the world can stop and prevent this, is by mandatory DNA tests of the dilute gene and publishing the results on the pedigree certificates, to start with every dog whose ancestors were “Non Recognised Colour”, even if it was only a single ancestor, and also with every imported Labrador and their offspring.

dreamcoat15Who would spot the dilute dogs in the UK KC pedigree? Now view the same dog in the LabradorNet Database. 

The Kennel Club allow dilutes to breed like rabbits, “Non Recognised Colour” or not. Click here to have a look at the 480 diluted dogs in the Kennel Club registry. 

UPDATE July 12, 2015
dreamcoatjune2015litterBoth the British Kennel Club and the British backyard breeders of diluted mutts couldn’t care less what the reputable Labrador world has to say about the pollution of the purebred Labrador bloodlines. Both the British Kennel Club and the British backyard breeders of diluted mutts have only one thing on their minds: money.

dreamcoat16In absolute contempt for the Labrador world and complete lack of understanding of the effects that this has on the purity of the Labrador, the Kennel Club registers “silvers”, “charcoals” and “champagnes” as “Not Recognised by KC”, but refuses to thwart the breeders of dilutes in any way when they cross a purebred Labrador with such a “Not Recognised by KC ‘dog, and award the dilute offspring of such a combination full registration, by which the so prized and valued bloodlines of the British Labrador are seriously contaminated.

 

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Who is Dean Crist (Crist Culo Kennels) ?

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This is what Dean Crist wants us, in the Labrador world, to know about him:

“Just as the 3rd Earl of Malmesbury is revered as the founder and one of the fathers of the Labrador Retriever breed, without whose foresight as devotion we would not have the Lab as we know and celebrate it today, likewise Dean Crist is indisputably the Father of the magnificent Silver Labrador Retriever; his foresight and absolute devotion has brought the Silver Lab out from obscurity and into the spotlight.” (…)
“Dean was born in 1948, the son of a working class family in Blue Island, Illinois, a suburb of Chicago. Later he attended the Culver Military Academy in Culver Indiana, graduating in 1966. From there, Dean enrolled at Iowa State University (ISU) where he
worked his way through school conducting research in a Bio-Chemistry/Bio Physics laboratory. Dean graduated from ISU in 1971 with dual degrees, Zoology and Bio-Chemistry.”
“Soon after graduating, Dean moved to his present home of Minocqua, Wisconsin, where he successfully established a restaurant business. Having a great love for the outdoors, wildlife conservation, dogs, and hunting, Minocqua fit him perfectly. At the time Dean began raising Labrador Retrievers, he had no idea the lasting impact he would have on the breed…in the Northwoods of Wisconsin, history was about to be made. “
[Source: “d” Labrador News, Issue 6, March/April 2010]

So, this is a Military Academy graduate, with dual degrees in zoology and bio-chemistry, who soon after his graduation moved to the small town of Minocqua, Wisconsin, where he successfully established a restaurant business. But is that all we need to know about him? Aren’t there some things he forgot to mention?

In April 2006 Dean Crist wrote this on one of his websites:

“When you deal with CRIST CULO KENNELS you are dealing with the most experienced producer of Silver Labs in the world; and CRIST CULO KENNELS has been breeding and raising Silver Labs longer than any kennel in the world. It is with the utmost pride we can boast not only the best lines of Silver Labs in the world, our lines have a proven history second to none in the world. (…)

“Every K-9 carries in its genes a complete genetic history of its ancestors going all the way back to wolves.” (…)

“Q. Are there any books or novels written about Silver Labs?

A. Yes, and if you would like to read a novel with a Silver Lab as a main character, you might enjoy reading America’s Rite by Dean Crist. This novel is available through Amazon.com, or it can be obtained by asking your local book store to order you a copy. However, America’s Rite is a novel written for adults and contains sexually explicit material. This novel is not for children– Parental Discretion is advised.” (…)

“Fortunately, kennel clubs around the world (who do not have the political pressure from mercenary American breeders of “normal” color Labs) already accept Silver Labs without all the political fuss and pressure being applied to AKC (the original standard for a Lab has always been “a coat of a solid color”). If a person should come upon one of the remaining “Silver Lab Hate Sites” on the internet and develops ANY doubts about Silver Labs, that person should go directly to AKC and ask the pertinent question to learn the facts.” (…)

Well, reading this it’s a bit difficult to get the feeling that Dean Crist is a modest man. I bet that there are many breeders of “silver Labradors” who disagree with Crist.
Also, one would expect that a dog lover with a degree in both zoology and bio-chemistry would know that dogs and wolves evolved from a common ancestor, instead of wolves being the ancestors of dogs.
In the “question” if there are any books or novels about silver Labs, Dean Crist starts to show a little of his true character. First of all, the “question” is simply a way to advertise his novel on the internet. Second, the silver Lab is not a “main character” in this novel. If you buy the book to read about a silver Lab, you will be very disappointed.
And then there’s Crist’s expression “Silver Lab Hate Sites”, which lead to the fact that people who dislike most dilute breeders’ ethics are called “haters”. That expression deserves some more investigation.

I started to read Dean Crist’s novel America’s Rite. Since I found it rather boring – I certainly couldn’t call it literature – I started reading the chapter “About the author”, and found out that Crist had also been active in the Treaty Rights conflicts in North Wisconsin.

About the Author
Dean Crist was born in 1948, and spent his youth in the working class Chicago suburb of Blue Island, Illinois. In 1960 he graduated from Blue Island Elementary School; in 1966 he graduated from Culver Military Academy; during the tumultuous ’60s, he attended Iowa State University; in 1971, he graduated with degrees in Zoology and Bio-Chemistry. After graduation from ISU, Mr. Crist chose a lifestyle which allowed him to pursue an avid love of the outdoors and wildlife conservation. To that end, in 1972, he became a successful restaurant owner in the small town of Minocqua, Wisconsin. His idyllic existence in the beautiful northwoods experienced a radical demise in the late 1980s, when a Federal Judge began segregating the use of Northern Wisconsin’s natural resources between Indian and non-Indian American Citizens. Recognizing the polarizing effects to Northern Wisconsin’s population such segregation would cause, as well as understanding the depravation to the natural resources the court awarded Treaty Rights were causing, Mr. Crist became deeply involved in the Treaty Rights Conflicts which engulfed Northern Wisconsin in the late ’80s and early 90s. In 1988, Mr. Crist became the spokesman for Stop Treaty Abuse Wisconsin, an anti-treaty rights organization composed of sportsmen, conservationists and residents of Northern WI. The purpose of STA/WI was to:a) help fight the rape the Northern Wisconsin’s natural resources being conducted under the guise of Treaty Rights, b) raise public awareness to the court’s segregation of Northern Wisconsin, and c) illuminate the violation of Constitutionally guaranteed equality which is violated by Treaty Rights. During his fight for equality in Northern Wisconsin, Mr. Crist interacted with all levels of the American Political System. In his decade of legal battles, he was tried several times on the state level, took a federal case to the Seventh Circuit Court of Appeals twice, and eventually got the issue of Wisconsin’s Treaty Rights before the US Supreme Court in Washington, DC. In that Supreme Court case, Wisconsin’s Treaty Rights were decided by a 5-4 decision in favor of the Indians.

Interesting. Now I was curious what other people (writers and journalists) had to say about Dean Crist.

Confronting Racism: Treaty Beer Comes to Washington State

By
Michelle Aguilar-Wells and Barbara Leigh Smith

Abstract:

This case tells the story of an attempt to sell a beer in Washington State in the late 1980’s that came to be labeled as “hate in a can.” Dean Crist, a pizza parlor operator from Minocqua, Wisconsin came to Washington with a campaign to stop what he called treaty abuses by American Indians by introducing “Treaty Beer.” This mobilized Indian and non-Indian groups and led to high level political discussions about what should be done. One of the authors of this case was the Executive Director of the Governor’s Office of Indian Affairs at the time this event occurred.

In 1988 Dean Crist, a pizza parlor operator from Minocqua, Wisconsin came to Washington State with a campaign to stop what he called Indian treaty abuses by introducing Treaty Beer. Sales from Treaty Beer were intended to finance resistance efforts against Indian treaty rights. Crist claimed to take his inspiration from Martin Luther King (Grossman, 1992). He was also an avid supporter of David Duke, an American white nationalist and former Grand Wizard of the Knights of the Ku Klux Klan. (…)

Crist’s “Stop Treaty Abuse” (STA) group was one of a number of increasingly militant groups that emerged and staged demonstrations against Indian spearfishing. Using strategies of misinformation and intimidation, protesters appeared at boat landings during tribal spearfishing season throwing beer cans and screaming taunts such as “timber niggers,” “welfare warriors,” “Save a Spawning Walleye,” and “Spear a Pregnant Squaw” (Grossman, 1992). Crist and his group saw the Indians as raping the fish resource, vital to the local tourist economy, even though the Chippewa never took more than three percent of the fish” (Grossman, 1992).  (…)

In the end, no major stores in the State stocked the beer and eventually nearly all of the 20 outlets, mostly small stores in Shelton, Des Moines, and Joyce, dumped the product. Four months after trying (again) and supposedly investing $100,000 in the Washington Treaty Beer effort, Crist withdrew. (Hannula, 1990) Crist had been ultimately chased out of Wisconsin, Ohio, Louisiana and now Washington.

Why had Treaty Beer failed? A few quipped that it wasn’t very good beer. Others said the times had changed. The edge was off the anti-Indian movement that had preceded and followed the Boldt decision. As Billy Frank, chair of the Northwest Indian Fisheries Commission, put it, “Maybe if it was 20 years ago, they could have sold it here. We’ve come a long way since then.” His colleague Steve Robinson elaborated, “Washington has outgrown him. And he’s losing in Wisconsin. The days are numbered for political types to try and build causes around hatred.” (Hannula, 1990)

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And there was a lot more to read about Dean Crist. Such as an article in the Seattle Times: 

Treaty Beer: The Burial Of A Bad Brew

 

IT WAS malted with malice. Brewed in bad faith. Its message was mean and misguided. Treaty Beer is dead. It deserves no tears.

Its mission was to bash rights promised Indian tribes by the United States and affirmed by the courts. It was called “bigot beer” and “hate in a can.”

Its creator, Dean Crist, a Minocqua, Wis., pizza-parlor operator, said sales were aimed at a legal fight against “treaty abuse.”

He first tried to introduce it to this state in 1988. Opposition was instant. It came from tribes, Gov. Booth Gardner, church groups – even some sports-fishing organizations that Crist hoped to woo.

After his four-month-long second try, Crist said he had lost $100,000 on the project and was folding his tent. He said he didn’t want to move to Washington to oversee his operation full time. He blamed charges of racism for poor sales and said the governor’s opposition had “terrorized” possible sellers.

Crist sang a different song his first time out:

“We’re talking consumer demand here and free enterprise. There is an enormous demand. Let the people of Washington speak. If they don’t want Treaty Beer, it won’t sell.”

They spoke twice. They didn’t want it the first time around, or the second. It didn’t sell. It failed on the shelves and in the marketplace of ideas.

At best, it was a collector’s item – something to stick on the home bar next to Billy Beer.

Without that, he wouldn’t have sold the paltry 2,000 cases (overpriced at $11 each) he claims to have peddled over four months.

“No matter what he says, he’s going home with his tail between his legs,” declared Steve Robinson, spokesman for the Northwest Indian Fisheries Commission. “He lost his shirt.”

Robinson wondered if Crist’s 2,000-case sales figure was accurate. “In the beginning, he said he had already sold 2,400 cases and was well into a second shipment. He told the secretary of state he didn’t need a fund-raising license because he hadn’t raised $5,000.” Robinson added:

“Basically, Washington has outgrown him. And he’s losing in Wisconsin (where his Treaty Beer sales are used to fight Chippewa fishing rights). The days are numbered for political types who try to build causes around hatred.”

Crist’s original Cincinnati brewer pulled out because of image problems associated with the product. Crist had to go to New Orleans to find a replacement: the Dixie Brewing Co.

No major outlets wanted Treaty Beer. It found shelves in remote little stores in Shelton, Des Moines, Joyce on the Olympic Peninsula, Home on the Kitsap Peninsula. A couple of taverns in Everett gave Treaty Beer the heave-ho after a few weeks of sales.

At Treaty Beer’s peak, there probably were fewer than 20 outlets. Eventually, all but six dumped it.

A Wisconsin coalition of church interests known as HONOR (Honor Our Neighbors’ Origins and Rights) started a branch operation in this state. It sent the message to stores and taverns that carrying Treaty Beer endorsed racial divisiveness.

This is not an obituary for Treaty Beer. It’s a birth announcement for increased awareness and cooperative understanding.

“The key thing is that it’s a testament to the people of the state,” Robinson said. “They turned Treaty Beer down.”

Billy Frank, chairman of the Northwest Indian Fisheries Commission, added:

“Maybe if it was 20 years ago, they could have sold it here. We’ve come a long way since then.”

Passions ran high following the historic 1974 ruling by U.S. District Judge George H. Boldt that treaty tribes were entitled to half the harvest of salmon and steelhead returning to traditional grounds.

Slowly, the heeling began. Today, there is solid cooperation among tribes, the state, and sports and commercial fishermen. Their common goal: to make the resource better for all.

“I see so many positive things happening,” Frank said. “We’ve got a pretty peaceful state now. Cooperative resource management has gotten better and better over the last 15 years. There is a good relationship between the state, local governments, and the tribes.

“People like Crist can’t drive a wedge between the majority of citizens and us.”

That’s the lasting lesson from this burial of a bad brew.

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And there’s more:

In the first of a series of arrests that propelled him to the forefront of the anti-treaty rights movement, Dean Crist of STA/W broke a sideview mirror off a vehicle owned by a tribal member at Butternut Lake and was arrested for disorderly conduct, hit and run property damage, and reckless driving.
[Source: The Walleye War: The Struggle for Ojibwe Spearfishing and Treaty Rights, page 97. By Larry Nesper.]

Anti-Indian sentiment oozed from bumper stickers proclaiming “Save Two Walleye, Kill a Pregnant Squaw”, “Save a Deer, Shoot an Indian” and “Spear an Indian, Save a Muskie”.
(…) Chippewa women singing religious songs in support of the spears have faced what one reporter has aptly called “a gauntlet of hate” as some demonstrators jeer and shout vicious taunts, racial slurs, and threats while others blow whistles and continuous shrill blasts in their ears. Even Indian schoolchildren have been harassed. One school with a large Indian enrollment has received bomb threats.
[Source: Chippewa Treaty Rights: The Reserved Rights of Wisconsin’s Chippewa Indians … page 101 and following. By Ronald N. Satz, Laura Apfelbeck.]

From Wisconsin Rapids Tribune:

Crist, angered at what he saw as the slaughter of walleyes, led a splinter group that broke from PARR called Stop Treaty Abuse. The group led protests at boat landings on lakes where tribal members were spearing — events that often became violent as protesters harassed spearfishermen, threw rocks at them and shot toward them with guns.

Peterson and Crist were arrested more than a dozen times and say they themselves were subject to threats as they tried to end spearfishing. Ultimately, they failed, but both men say they believe they were successful in showing treaties first signed in the 1830s to be unfair. (…)

“(PARR) was a voice that was doing nothing, accomplishing nothing,” the 62-year-old Crist said this month during an interview in the Minocqua pizza parlor he now owns and operates.

STA organizers and other protesters by the hundreds staked out boat landings, where they jeered and taunted tribal members and pelted them with rocks and beer bottles. Crist even hired a company in Louisiana to brew “Treaty Beer” that sold for $11 a case to raise money for STA and awareness about treaty issues.

Crist offers no apologies for the protests, many of which he led, or the lawsuits he was part of in his attempt to stop spearing.

“I guess if I’d do it again, I’d have better legal counsel,” said Crist, who estimated that he spent $500,000 raised through STA and out of his own pocket on attorney fees and court costs during a four-year legal battle.

The Lac du Flambeau tribe successfully sued Crist and STA in federal court to stop the violence during boat landing protests. Crist unsuccessfully tried to use the lawsuit to relitigate the 1983 federal court ruling, claiming that only full-blooded Indians could exercise the right to spear fish and that the tribe was previously compensated in the 1800s as part of the treaty. (…)

Crist continues working at his restaurant, is part of the volunteer fire department in Minocqua and said he seldom thinks about spearfishing.

Conclusions

Dean Crist is in no way comparable to the 3rd Earl of Malmesbury. Although he thinks the world of himself and managed to pursuade the CPLR and many of their followers to admire him as “the Founding Father of the Silver Labrador”, Dean Crist is an ordinary racist, a hater, and very unsuccessful, as a scientist, as the owner of a pizza hut, as a beer brewer, as a novelist, and as a dog breeder.

Jack Vanderwyk,
June 2015

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The Kennel Club Registers Dilutes As Purebred Labrador Retrievers – A Trojan Horse

Caroline Kisko (Kennel Club Secretary and Communications Director) has admitted that The Kennel Club will register any pups from KC registered parents, whether they are black, yellow, chocolate, ‘silver’, ‘charcoal’ or ‘champagne’. Furthermore, these diluted dogs can be entered in shows. The Kennel Club leaves it to the Judges to decide whether these dogs meet the standard.

Our first problem is that the dilution gene (d) is alien to the Labrador Retriever breed. The dilution gene originated in a shabby puppy mill in the United States several decades ago where several pointing breeds were running loose together. In an effort to create a “pointing Lab”, the dogs were allowed to cross breed with Labradors. One of these breeds was the Weimaraner, and many of the diluted “Labradors” we see, especially those of the past, resemble the Weimaraner in several ways. It’s not only their appearance and behaviour, but also their diseases, which shouldn’t be introduced to our bloodlines.
Various expressions of the dilution gene have been noted. Some dogs with dilute color display minimal or no health problems; other dogs experience hair loss and skin problems. Color dilution alopecia (CDA) and black hair follicular dysplasia (BHFD) can accompany coat color dilution. These diseases cause recurrent skin inflammation and drying, bacterial infections of hair follicles and severe hair loss. Late 2013 a 12-week-old female silver Labrador Retriever was submitted to the Comparative Ocular Pathology Laboratory of Wisconsin, and was diagnosed with Malignant Uveal Schwannoma. Scientists believe that the dilute color mutation may contribute to the cause.
Other disorders that could travel with the dilution gene are heritable Weimeraner genetic issues such as trembling disorders, autoimmune related vaccination sensitivity and intolerance, Von Willebrands Disease, hyperuricosuria causing painful bladder and kidney disease, and behavioral problems that are more common in the Weimaraner, such as separation anxiety, and dominant, protective, territorial temperament. Minimizing occurrence of these conditions would mean minimization of the dilute mutation. Selection against dilution is important in breeds that display health issues associated with the mutation. It is also important to minimize the dilution mutation in breeds that do not have a standard written which include these colours. The Labrador Retriever is currently one of these breeds. Dilute coloured Labrador retrievers are a disqualification according to breed standards. Those dogs carrying the dilute gene should not be registered as purebred Labrador Retrievers.

The Labrador Retriever Club Inc. is the AKC Parent Club of the Labrador Retriever. On May 12, 2014, the LRC published the following message on their website: “Very exciting news – the OFA has agreed to maintain a database of Labradors who have been permanently identified (microchip or tattoo ) and have been tested for the d gene. Dogs having the genotype dd will be listed as affected, Dd as carriers of the dilute gene and DD as clear of the dilute gene. This is great news for us.”
Note: The Orthopedic Foundations for Animals (OFA)
 only registers hereditary diseases (or the lack of those) in their databases. So it’s not a simple matter of “a different colour”.

Our second problem is the fact that The Kennel Club has already registered 400+ dilutes as purebred Labradors, some as “Colour Not Recognised”, but all of them without any restrictions with regard to showing, breeding or anything else for that matter. These dogs are now part of the Labrador gene pool in the United Kingdom.

Our third problem is the fact that not all of these dilutes are affected by the dilution gene. Many of them are “only” carriers of the dilution gene, which means that they are able to produce dilutes. So not only could these dogs enter shows, they could also come to your doorstep for a mating with your Champion stud. Many breeders have been duped this way, and were unpleasantly surprised to see that their Champion is the sire of dilute carriers or the grandsire of diluted puppies.


What can we do?
While DNA-tests are increasingly used as a valuable breeders tool, we can easily and reliably test Labradors for the dilution gene. DD is the only acceptable result, as Dd is a dilute carrier and dd is affected by the gene. So any bitch you don’t know, which comes to be mated by your stud, should be tested for the dilution gene.
Of course, The Kennel Club should require all imported “Labradors” to be tested, but they don’t.
Despite the fact that we have been able to show the presence of the dilute gene in DNA since 2007, the Kennel Clubs just look at the phenotype of a Labrador, not at the genotype. So, a dilute who only carries the dilute gene without being affected by it, will be seen as a purebred Labrador, while a simple and inexpensive DNA test would show it’s a Dd, able to produce dilutes eligible to be registered as purebred Labradors.


And then there are the online LRCN and LabradorNet Databases, in which you can find the “Labradors” carrying, or affected by, the dilution gene. Note: not all of them are registered in the database, but most of their ancestry is. Studying pedigrees might give you an indication. F
rom a showing point of view it would be helpful if there were an addition to the standard, such as “any colour other than black, yellow or chocolate is considered a disqualifying fault “.

Last but not least there’s the organised Labrador world. There’s so much that should have been done, and so much more we can do. It all depends on the people we elect in the committees and the Labrador Breed Council. I refuse to believe that, in the end, a Kennel Club is able to decide something which dramatically affects the future of the Labrador breed, very much against the will of the Labrador Clubs and the Breed Council.

Jack Vanderwyk,
September 2014 

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THE “SILVER LABRADOR” IN THE UNITED KINGDOM

In the United Kingdom it was never possible to register dogs with the “dilute” (d) gene as Labrador Retrievers. Until 2006, when a British breeder imported several “silver Labradors” to the United Kingdom and started breeding them. These dogs all came from a worrying long line of dilutes.

The “dilute” (d) gene surfaced in the United States in the late forties and early fifties of the last century. In those years there were no DNA tests available, and unfortunately these dogs were registered as Labrador Retrievers. The breeder who produced these dogs, Mayo Kellogg from Kellogg Kennels, was an important customer of the American Kennel Club (AKC). Kellogg bred several breeds, including the Weimaraner, a breed which carries the “dilute” (d) gene, and the dogs often ran free. Initially these dogs were registered as “silver” or “charcoal”, until the Labrador Retriever Club Inc. (LRC), the parent club of the American Labrador Retriever clubs, objected against these practices. From that moment the “dilute” (d) dogs were registered with the recognized three coat colours of the Labrador Retriever.

More than half a century later we sadly have to observe that the American studbook of the Labrador Retriever, as maintained by the American Kennel Club (AKC), contains more than 35,000 dogs that carry the “dilute” (d) gene. Not all carriers are also phenotypically affected. However, these dogs that only carry the gene are passing it on to their offspring. This means that we simply can not be satisfied with a phenotypical (” by eye”) check, let alone by simply looking at an AKC pedigree certificate. Genetic research of these dogs by means of DNA tests will need to take place to make sure that the stud book stays closed. Any presence of the “dilute” (d) gene in the Labrador Retriever is unacceptable.

The Kennel Club maintains the studbook of the Labrador Retriever, with guidance of the LRC, and has the task of ensuring that only purebred Labradors are registered in the studbook .

In that respect, it seems that the registry of the Labrador Retriever has gone wrong. This concerns not only me, but also the Labrador Clubs in the United Kingdom and abroad.

DOUBTFUL PEDIGREE CERTIFICATES

The cause of these concerns lies in the fact that more and more dogs are imported from the United States, with pedigree certificates from the American Kennel Club (AKC), which state that the dogs are Labrador Retrievers with the colours black, yellow or chocolate, while in reality these are dogs that are carriers of the so-called “dilute” (d) gene. The d gene is characterized by a “diluted” coat colour and light eyes, which are called “charcoal” or “blue” if the base colour is black, “champagne” if the base colour is yellow, and “silver” if the base colour is chocolate. In particular, the “silvers” are becoming more and more popular with the general public and substantial amounts of money are paid for puppies and adult dogs.

On first sight it seems that there is nothing to worry about these practices, because these dogs are imported with the recognized colours on their pedigree certificates, and as such they can formally be entered in the Kennel Club studbook. However, the duties of the Kennel Club as keeper of the studbook surpass that of formally administrator. One can not pretend that nothing is wrong, only because of the fact that the paperwork looks okay.

The fact is that the “dilute” (d) gene or locus is alien to the Labrador Retriever breed. This gene is simply not present in the breed as we know it. In order to keep the studbook closed, and maintain the purity of the Labrador Retriever breed, the Kennel Club should ensure that no genes alien to the breed are entering the breed. Covert operations like opening a closed studbook in a sneaky way is not what the public expects from a respectable organization like the Kennel Club.

We, the people who love and value the Labrador Retriever breed as we know it from Boothgates, Sandylands, Stormley, Fabracken, Foulby, Mardas, Kupros, Donalbain, Lindall, Poolstead, Ballyduff, Beechcroft, Dickendall, Jayncourt, Lobuff, Chablais, Tormentil, Tabatha, etc., are expecting a quite different dog when we think of Labrador Retrievers. We expect to see a Labrador that looks like a Labrador, a Labrador that’s black if its pedigree says it’s black; a Labrador that’s yellow if its pedigree says it’s yellow; a Labrador that’s chocolate if its pedigree says it’s chocolate. The dilution gene (d) is alien to the Labrador Retriever breed, so diluted dogs, “silver”, “charcoal”, or “champagne”, cannot be purebred Labradors. The American Kennel Club (AKC) however begs to differ. And The Kennel Club has a deal with the AKC: thou shall not doubt our pedigrees.

NOT JUST A DIFFERENT COLOUR

Throughout the years, Labrador breeders have worked hard to eliminate undesired traits and illnesses in the breed. With the fouling of our trusted bloodlines with the dilution gene, various expressions of the dilution gene have been noted. Some dogs with dilute color display minimal or no health problems; other dogs experience hair loss and skin problems. Color dilution alopecia (CDA) and black hair follicular dysplasia (BHFD) can accompany coat color dilution. These diseases cause recurrent skin inflammation and drying, bacterial infections of hair follicles and severe hair loss. Other disorders that could travel with the dilution gene are trembling disorders and behavioral problems that are more common in the Weimaraner.

The Labrador Retriever Club Inc. is the AKC Parent Club of the Labrador Retriever. On May 12, 2014, the LRC published the following message on their website: “Very exciting news – the OFA has agreed to maintain a database of Labradors who have been permanently identified (microchip or tattoo ) and have been tested for the d gene. Dogs having the genotype dd will be listed as affected, Dd as carriers of the dilute gene and DD as clear of the dilute gene. This is great news for us.”

Note: The Orthopedic Foundations for Animals (OFA) only registers hereditary diseases (or the lack of those) in their databases. So it’s not a simple matter of “a different colour”.

Three renowned genetic laboratories, Vetgen, Laboklin, and the Van Haeringen Group, have confirmed to me in writing that it is perfectly possible to show the presence of the “dilute” (d) gene. These studies have already been developed and can be used today. The costs are about 50 pounds.

The National Kennel Clubs have the means to prevent non-purebred dogs to enter the studbooks. If in doubt about the presence of the “dilute” (d) gene in Labrador Retrievers, one should require the applicant of a pedigree certificate to proof that this particular dog or litter is free from the “dilute” (d) gene, by means of DNA testing by accredited laboratories.

I would like to ask the Board of the Kennel Club to require that any Labrador Retriever that is imported in the United Kingdom has to show the results of a DNA test proving that the dog is free from the “dilute” (d) gene. This should also apply to any Labrador Retriever when there are doubts about the purity, regarding the presence of the “dilute” (d) gene.

WHAT CAN BE DONE TO SET THIS SITUATION RIGHT AND PREVENT FURTHER DISASTERS?

1. The thirteen Labrador Retriever Breed Clubs in the United Kingdom and the Labrador Breed Council can decide that any dog carrying the dilution (Dd or dd) gene can not be a purebred Labrador Retriever.

2. The thirteen Labrador Retriever Breed Clubs in the United Kingdom and the Labrador Breed Council can decide that therefore such dogs should not be registered by The Kennel Club as Labrador Retrievers.

3. The thirteen Labrador Retriever Breed Clubs in the United Kingdom and the Labrador Breed Council can decide that a DNA test of the dilution locus of every Labrador Retriever is required before registration by The Kennel Club.

4. The thirteen Labrador Retriever Breed Clubs in the United Kingdom and the Labrador Breed Council can decide that any offspring of any diluted “Labrador Retriever” already registered by The Kennel Club, will not be registered by The Kennel Club.

Finally, I would like to ask the Board of the Kennel Club to look into the practices of registering “dilutes” with the remark “Colour Not Recognized”. Although these practices might seem to be effective, they are not. Breeders and owners of “dilutes” are clever enough to register their dogs with the recognized colours black, yellow and chocolate, and some Kennel Clubs, like the AKC, willfully cooperate with these frauds. A “silver” Labrador is not a chocolate Labrador, a “charcoal” Labrador is not a black Labrador, and a “champagne” Labrador is not a yellow Labrador, not even when a foreign Kennel Club has registered the dog as such. They are simply not purebred Labradors. The task of the Kennel Club is to guard the purity of the breed. This is a very serious task .

In September 2014 I was able to identify 384 “Labradors” in the Kennel Club’s registration which were either carriers or affected by the dilution gene.Ddilutes are being produced in the United Kingdom on a near industrial scale, and The Kennel Club sits still and does nothing about it. Registrations of these dilutes on a large scale is not a problem whatsoever, and if you ask the Kennel Club about this, they say, “We trust the people to be honest when they register their dogs.”

Well, as you can see, this “honesty” approach doesn’t work. In the mean time the dilute breeders keep filling their pockets and keep fouling the Labrador gene pool with their dilutes, on an ever larger scale. Without any restrictions.

Only a strong and determined Breed Council can stop this very serious situation.

Jack Vanderwyk.
September 2014

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Closed Labrador Stud Book Silently Opened For Diluted Dogs From America

We thought they would never enter the British Labrador Registry. We believed that The Kennel Club would see to it that these “silvers”, “charcoals” and “champagnes” would under no circumstances be registered as purebred Labrador Retrievers without any restrictions.

But it happened. To be precise: it started in 2006, when a few British Labrador breeders paid a substantial amount of money to import some diluted dogs from notorious American “silver” breeders, because they saw a business opportunity. The Kennel Club was very cooperative. Since the imported dogs were registered as “chocolate” by the American Kennel Club (AKC), they were simply registered as “chocolate” by The British Kennel Club, without questions being asked.


When registering the offspring of these diluted dogs, The Kennel Club’s consistency was hard to find. Some puppies were registered as “Non Recognised Colour”, others – sometimes littermates – were registered as chocolate or black.
The British Kennel Club only looked at a dog and its colour to decide if the colour was recognised or not. Phenotype instead of genotype, even after 2007, when the DNA dilution tests became commercially available.
The problem is that all of these dogs were carriers of the dilution (d) gene, and they could – and still can in this day and age – freely spread these genes in the Labrador population.
Owners know a KC registered pedigree dog will display the characteristics of the breed, in both looks and temperament,” say The Kennel Club on their website. If only that were true when it comes to the Labrador Retriever.

The dilution gene in the Labrador Retriever

The dilution gene (d) is alien to the Labrador Retriever breed. Every single diluted “Labrador” finds its origin in the United States. Frances O Smith, DVM, PhD Chair, Labrador Retriever Club, Inc. Genetics Committee writes, “It is the opinion of the Labrador Retriever Club, Inc., the AKC parent club for the breed, that a silver Labrador is not a purebred Labrador retriever. The pet owning public is being duped into believing that animals with this dilute coat color are desirable, purebred and rare and, therefore, warrant special notoriety or a premium purchase price. (…) Recognized coat colours for purebred Labradors are black, yellow and chocolate. No shadings of coat colour are recognized for black or chocolate Labradors in either the Labrador Standard or the current research into genetic coat colours. (…) The omission of “d,” and thus the impossibility of a dd dilute gene resulting from a pure Labrador breeding, is certainly persuasive evidence that the silver Labrador is not a purebred.”

It all started with Mayo Kellogg, the “real father of the American pointing Lab”, who since 1946 spent forty years of his life developing pointing skills in his Labrador lines, because “a pointing retriever is superior to a retrieving pointer.” Kellogg came from a long line of puppy millers and he was sensitive to the desires of the “market”. I’m willing to believe that he was a skilful dog breeder who knew that you can breed the desired traits in, and the undesirable traits out, within a couple of generations. In his efforts to “invent” the “pointing Lab”, Kellogg bred several breeds, including the Weimaraner, a breed that is based entirely on the “dilute” (d) gene.
Back in the 1960s puppies and dogs were running free all over the Kellogg’s farm and record keeping was not as strict as today, so it was very easy for dogs to mix and breed. Kellogg thought nothing about segregating intact animals, and the Labs coming from his business displayed physical characteristics of these other breeds, including the Weimeraner characteristics and colour. Jim Trotter, a dog expert who visited Kellogg in the 1970s, specifically cited the place as being a “shambles” with chains, barrels, crowded runs with holes under the concrete, dead rats…
If a chocolate Labrador bred with a Weimeraner, then all resulting chocolate puppies would look like field type Labradors and would then be registered as Labradors.

In the 1980s Dean Crist (Culo kennels) and (in the 1990s) Beavercreek kennels both decided to follow the footsteps of Kellogg’s kennels. They were going to specialise in ‘silver’ Labradors, so they bought themselves a couple of dogs, descending from Kellogg’s stock. All diluted “Labradors” have either Culo, Beavercreek, or both lines in their pedigrees. LabradorNet keeps an online Labrador database, in which you can find diluted “Labradors”.

Not just a different colour

Various expressions of the dilution gene have been noted. Some dogs with dilute color display minimal or no health problems; other dogs experience hair loss and skin problems. Colour dilution alopecia (CDA) and black hair follicular dyplasia (BHFD) can accompany coat colour dilution. These diseases cause recurrent skin inflammation and drying, bacterial infections of hair follicles and severe hairloss. Late 2013 a 12-week-old female silver Labrador Retriever was submitted to the Comparative Ocular Pathology Laboratory of Wisconsin, and was diagnosed with Malignant Uveal Schwannoma. Scientists believe that the dilute colour mutation may contribute to the cause.
Other disorders that could travel with the dilution gene are heritable Weimeraner genetic issues such as trembling disorders, autoimmune related vaccination sensitivity and intolerance, Von Willebrands Disease, hyperuricosuria causing painful bladder and kidney disease, and behavioural problems that are more common in the Weimaraner, such as separation anxiety, and dominant, protective, territorial temperament. Minimizing occurrence of these conditions would mean minimization of the dilute mutation. Selection against dilution is important in breeds that display health issues associated with the mutation. It is also important to minimize the dilution mutation inbreeds that do not have a standard written which include these colours. The Labrador Retriever is currently one of these breeds. Dilute coloured Labrador retrievers are – or should be – a disqualification according to breed standards. Those dogs carrying the dilute gene should not be registered as purebred Labrador Retrievers.

Meanwhile in the United Kingdom


The Labrador Breed Council represents the thirteen Labrador Retriever Breed Clubs in the United Kingdom. It is the official channel of communication with the Kennel Club. The Labrador Breed Council is responsible for establishing a consensus from among the member Breed Clubs on Judging criteria, training, qualifications and lists, Breed Standard, Health issues, KC Registration.

On April 12, 2012, the Labrador Breed Council met with The Kennel Club, to discuss the dilutes problem. Unfortunately the Labrador Breed Council can’t tell The Kennel Club what they need to do. They can make suggestions and submit them, but in the end it’s The Kennel Club who decides. At this time The Kennel Club organised a DNA test and found the dogs tested were proven to be purebred according to the results given. It’s such a pity that the representatives of the Labrador Breed Council weren’t aware of the fact that such tests are extremely unreliable. Current DNA tests cannot be used to determine if the dilute Labradors are purebred or if they’ve been recently mixed with any other breed. These tests could say something about the parents, and at most something about the grandparents, but anything beyond that remains a mystery. If the Labrador Breed Council would have known this, they wouldn’t have found themselves “dead in the water”.

A DNA test which is reliable, contrary to the DNA test The Kennel Club organised to prove that dilutes are purebred, is the test on the dilution gene. DD = purebred Labrador, Dd = carrier of the dilute gene, dd = affected by the dilute gene. Since we know that the dilute gene is alien to the Labrador Retriever breed, so a dilute can’t be a purebred Labrador, all The Kennel Club need to do is to test every imported Labrador for this gene, as well as all the offspring of previously registered imported Labradors.

The Labrador Breed Council is on our side. They still have to put the case to The Kennel Club and they are still keen to see this fraud corrected in the breed. I’m sure the breed clubs will, in turn, be very keen to support the ousting of this problem. So without doubt the breed clubs and the Labrador Breed Council in the United Kingdom will back our efforts to get rid of these unwanted fraudulent colours.

Worryingly, in the mean time about five hundred KC registered “Labradors” have been identified as dilutes.

Jack Vanderwyk,
September 2014 

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Message from LRC’s President – Too Little, But Not Too Late

lrc-goal

If you wonder what the Labrador Retriever Club, Inc. – the AKC’s parent club for the Labrador Retriever breed – is planning to do about the dilute problem in the breed, this is the message sent by LRC President Fred Kampo Jr., on February 10, 2015:

 

The Labrador Retriever Club, Inc. – President’s Membership Update 02-10-15

The Labrador Retriever Club, Inc.

To the Membership —

As President of The Labrador Retriever Club, Inc. I want to share information on the status of the Club’s attempts to respond to the problem regarding the registration of dogs as Labrador Retrievers with the dilute coat color identified as “silver.”

In 1986 the Club attempted to have AKC deny registration of Labradors identified with the “silver” coat color. That did not happen after an AKC representative investigating the breeding facilities of the dogs exhibiting the dilute coat color made the decision to categorize the color as chocolate under the “other” option on the registration application. Subsequent generations of dogs carrying the dilute gene remain in breeding programs, many bred to recognized titled dogs.

Scientific evidence has shown us that there is no evidence of a dilute gene in the coat color background of the Labrador Retriever.  Despite the Parent Club’s multiple attempts to request that the American Kennel Club deny full registration to dogs exhibiting a dilute coat color, these dogs still remain in the breeding pool and kennels focusing on dilute coat colors proliferate. At this time, our best option to protect the gene pool for the Labrador Retriever is to encourage the use of the DNA test to identify carriers of the dilute gene. I want to urge each of you, especially those with active stud dogs, to have breeding stock tested for the dilute gene and include the information in your advertising. I am also suggesting that we add the test to the requirements for an LRC, Inc. Breeders’ Directory listing.

Please share this with your local specialty club members. Comments can be posted on the Club’s Members Only Facebook page.

Fred Kampo, Jr.

President, The Labrador Retriever Club, Inc.

 

As I’m not a member of the LRC, I will leave my comments here.

First of all, I wonder why the LRC are talking about “Labrador Retrievers with the dilute coat color identified as “silver,” and “exhibiting a dilute coat color.” The dilute problem is so much more than a “silver coat color”. There is also a “charcoal coat color” and a “champagne coat color”, and “exhibiting a dilute coat color” is a very simplified explanation of the problem, as dilute breeders don’t come to reputable Labrador breeders with their “silver” bitches, but with bitches who are carriers of the dilute gene. The dilute coat color will be exhibited in a second generation of such matings, by using a carrying dog on a carrying bitch.

Second, the President’s message gives me the impression that – “despite the Parent Club’s multiple attempts to request that the American Kennel Club deny full registration to dogs exhibiting a dilute coat color” – there is nothing left to do for the LRC but to advise their members to have the DNA of their dogs tested and to deny listing in the Breeders  Directory without such a test. That’s it, that’s all we can do. Sorry.

I’m very disappointed with the LRC. The AKC claim that they are merely a registry, and the LRC claim they aren’t able to persuade the AKC to stop registering dogs carrying (or affected by) the dilute gene as purebred Labrador retrievers. Where is the love for the purebred Labrador in these organizations? Where is the will and the power to stop the pollution of the Labrador blood lines, world wide?

I strongly believe that it’s time for the reputable Labrador breeders of the world to stand up, to become members of the LRC, to let their voice hear in the meetings, to choose better and stronger representatives in the AKC. 

The present approach and the present stance of the LRC is just not good enough.

Jack Vanderwyk,
February 2015

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