Saturday, September 18, 2010

Seriously, get over the "designer dog" BS

A fellow blogger was given a dog, which looks like this:

"It's a puggle", she says. A reader commented that indeed, the puggle is a recognized "species."

Yeah... not so much. A "puggle" isn't a breed, it's a portmanteau word to refer to a dog believed to be a pug x beagle cross. Waste of a beagle, if you ask me, because why breed a scenthound to a breed with a nose so misshapen they can't even breathe? People do the dumbest things.

So I looked at the photo and it looks nothing like a pug. Not much like a beagle either, but certainly nothing like a pug.

"Oh yes he does," she says. "He has a wrinkled face."

And... your point is? Most puppies have wrinkled faces. Many breeds also have wrinkled faces as adults, such as... scenthounds. Imagine that. Pugs don't just have wrinkles, they have a squished face, which is a genetic deformity that has been bred for selectively, for no good reason, to produce things like bulldogs and mastiffs. And pugs. All dogs who are not very good at breathing, and in the case of bulldogs and pugs, not much good for anything else either.

Luckily, this puppy looks nothing like a pug. Yes, it has a wrinkled face. But it doesn't have a squished face, or bulging eyes, or a curly tail, which is very common in "puggles" if you look at the "breed's" official website. There's nothing about this dog that suggests it's ever even been near a pug.

You know what it does look like though?

A bloodhound puppy.

Not a highly typey, award-winning bloodhound puppy, but it looks like a bloodhound puppy. And you're gonna be sorry if that's what it is, because a bloodhound is a BIG HUNTING DOG. It needs tons of training, tons of exercise, mental stimulation, firm leadership, tons of exercise, and did I mention tons of exercise? It needs tons of exercise. Like a beagle, except tons more.

Also, most hounds bark often and very loud. That's what they're bred for.

Also, bloodhounds are reputedly difficult to house train. Or to train to anything, but most people never go any further than housetraining, so that's no big deal, maybe.

And also, bloodhounds are on average a medically high-maintenance breed.

So other than the fact that there's no such thing as a "puggle", maybe you shouldn't take home a puppy of unknown ancestry just because someone made up a cute portmanteau word for it... because in your lack of knowledge, you might be taking home a bloodhound that you'll never be able to handle.

There are two kinds of dogs: purebreds and mutts. Purebreds are bred from consistent stock to have consistent traits, so there is some predictability in them. Mutts are everything else, and you never know what you're gonna get until you try. And calling it a "puggle" doesn't make it anything other than a mutt. Or maybe a bloodhound.


Mr. Puggle® said...

Holy cow. Why so much puggle hate? I love my puggle. He is an awesome dog. So smart. So loving. So fun. Wish you could meet him. You might fall in love and not care about the name so much.

Mongoose said...

That's completely beside the point.

a girl and her two shibas said...

i agree with the designer BS and the amount of $ they charge for one. i'm more upset that because shibas are "trendy", the pet stores will sell them for $1200 for a sickly pup that was bred from a backyard breeder. argh!

it pisses me off more when people see me walking my two inus and they ask me how much money did i buy them for. i usually go into a rant that one of my dogs is a neglected and abused rescue because some idiot probably bought him from a damn pet store for $1200.

but i digress. i'm not a fan of designer dogs. simply, i'm a fan of those shelter dogs cause they love life more.

Mongoose said...

Exactly. Shelters are full of free pets, breed or mutt, so why are people spending hundreds of dollars on a mutt just because someone gave it a funny "breed" name? Greed and lies make me angry.

Ariel said...

My Puggle aka Designer Dog aka Grandpuppy that I love, she was rescued from a 'Animal Welfare' kill shelter here in Chicago IL USA at 8 weeks old. So now what have you got to say! You need to make a blog about BREEDERS! I have the Best of both worlds. A Great, Smart, Active, Snuggle Puggle. She just fit our lifestyle for now. I have had many other Breeds in the past. The Breed doesn't matter. It the love! that does!
Designer Dog, Puggle Ariel <3

Ariel said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Ariel said...

O'yes I forgot if you know anything about dogs you would know that all dogs of today were Designed! OMD all the Puggle Dog hate!
p.s.s. so sorry for the delete made a spelling error.

Mongoose said...

Exactly, breeds are designed meaning somebody put some thought into selecting individuals for certain traits that they wanted to be able to get consistently. That's what a breed is. A "designer dog" isn't that, it's a random crossing of two pet dogs for no particularly good reason, plus a portmanteau word. What point can possibly be achieved by crossing a pug, which has no nose, and a beagle, which is a scenthound? Nothing. You lose the deformities that the pug is bred for and the qualities that the beagle is bred for, and get a dog that looks like a bloodhound except with no nose and a less extreme version of the pug deformities. What's the point of that? And if you kept breeding it and breeding it, you wouldn't get even that. The pug morphology would wash out and you'd just have a short-hair dog with hanging ears and no particular characteristics that would make it worth having created a new breed.

And the fact that you adopted your dog doesn't mean it's a good idea to breed them. On the contrary, if there weren't so many idiots breeding dogs at random for the money they get off gullible uninformed people, there wouldn't be so many adoptable dogs in shelters.

People who are emotional thinkers should STFU some times.

TeamDog said...

I have to say that I don't mind mutts; I had a mutt once, and she was the joy of my life. I miss her terribly:(. What ticks me off about "puggles" and the whole "designer dog" thing is that people charge $600-$1200 for a potentially sickly, poorly bred mutt that you could pick up at a shelter for free.

K9Trainer said...

I love you. Really. I love you now. I try and try and try to explain this to people and NOBODY wants to get it. Key word: Wants. They could get it, if they wanted to. They don't want to. They want to fad, the fashion, the "in-ness" of having a 'designer dog.'

I work in a pet store that sells designer dogs and I can't even stand it.

You tell 'em how it is. It's the truth: From a pet store employee to all the people who love the designer dogs: Just because they're mutts doesn't make them bad dogs, but if you paid for it from a 'breeder' or otherwise did not rescue it, you just bought into the biggest scam ever created. Grats.

K9Trainer said...

My blog rant on the subject: