German Shepherd Dog > OFA Online Amateur Question (25 replies)

by aceofspades on 08 May 2012 - 05:05

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So when I bought Ace and Janna I knew nothing about how the OFA worked.  I did not know that you could search their database and confirm hip scores yada yada yada.

I bought Ace with full registration.  My purchase agreement said I had to have his hips x-rayed before breeding, the usual stuff outlined in the contract.  I am sure that his mother and father were advertised as being "OFA'd".  I foolishly took their word for it.  Fortunately it looks like Ace will be fine, but I go to look up the parents hips tonight and neither are listed.

So my question is.......are ALL X-rayed dogs, without exception, listed on the OFA site?  I can't find ANY of the dogs owned by this breeder nor any of the offspring of the dogs owned by this breeder listed.  My dog came from their third litter and not one offspring is listed nor are the parents or the other two dogs they own.  In fact I can not find any of the dogs in Ace's mother's pedigree, and only a couple from his father's.

What will happen when i submit my films to OFA now?  What will be entered in the part where Ace's sire and dam are supposed to be listed?

Once again, I made a completely amateur mistake and did not confirm hip score (and did not know it was possible to) before buying a dog. 

I'm sure gathering up a booklet of things I know not to do (or know TO do) the next time I buy a dog.  Thankfully Janna's pedigree is complete with OFA on her mom's side.  Father is not listed but I suspect that is because he is German Import. 

by aceofspades on 08 May 2012 - 06:05

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And I looked over my contract with them. They offer a hip guarantee. Why would a breeder guarantee hips when they do not know the status of the hips Of their own breeding dogs? Is this because a guarantee can not be enforced anyway or because they know that almost no one will ever have their dogs hips xrayed? It appears that out of 6 litters total (2 before mine, mine and three after between 2 bitches) I am the only person who has followed through with my purchase agreement. Out of 50 some odd puppies (give or take).

by Hundmutter on 08 May 2012 - 07:05

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Well Ace I'd really need to see how it was worded, but personally I don't see how anyone can give a "guarantee" about the hip status their pups will turn out to be.  For example:  my last bitch was bred by someone who firmly believed in the value of using the KC/BVA HIP SCHEME properly;  she bred Vida, therefore,  from low-scoring parents, which themselves had good family hip histories going back generations.  Vee's litter siblings turned out fine, e.g  3:4=7,  5:5=10 etc.  Vida's
hips, on the other hand, were 29:31=60.  Her sire was listed as producing her, and one other 60 score, I believe;  but just about  everything else he ever produced, to my knowledge, was recorded as within the then Breed Mean.  The mother had had one litter where hips had not turned out to be a issue;  she then had a third litter where again there was one bitch pup who eventually had a very high score, and everyone else was ok as far as I know.  The breeder then stopped using her for breeding.  Vida never developed clinical problems of Hip Displasia,  she lived to 14 by which time she was a bit arthritic.
The half sister developed arthritis earlier, around 7 if memory serves, but then her score was higher and she had a different lifestyle.  So I would love to see anyone with a crystal ball give "guarantees" on a turnout like that !  Dr Willis said of Vida:
"well, these things sometimes happen".  

by Rik on 08 May 2012 - 11:05

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In the U.S., most guarantees are for the replacement of the puppy if hips are bad.

In reality, from a lot of breeders, the guarantee is the only thing they will ever give, getting the replacement can be very diffulcult and costly.

by Blitzen on 08 May 2012 - 12:05

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Joined: Mon Aug 09, 2004 06:49 am

Many, many names on the OFA database are misspelled and/or the  OFA numbers are transposed. If you can't find the dog you are searching for using their their full name, try a part of the name that is unique if you can. For example - Kismet's Site for Sore Eyes, can't find it? Seach using sore eyes.

When I bred, my show/breeding guarantee said the dog would eligible for an OFA certification of fair, good, or excellent at 24 months of age. That expired if the dog was not xrayed by the time it reached 28 months. If the dog didn't clear, I asked  to first see a copy of the xryay and then proof that the dog was neutered or returned. Then it would be replaced or refunded upon as agreed upon by all involved parties. Not GSD's another large working breed where every breeder I knew who didn't honor a contract was outted and in for a lot of problems. Maybe GSD breeders need to expect more from their peers?


by workingdogz on 08 May 2012 - 12:05

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Joined: Thu Sep 22, 2011 10:42 pm
Slightly off topic, but Rik nailed it!

Most breeders will offer a guarantee to make
the purchaser feel 'warm and fuzzy'. Some will
then turn around and try to place blame on the
buyer if things go south! Ignoring the very obvious.

Guarantees will generally state 'against crippling
hip dysplasia', that means Fido needs to be dragging
around. If Fido OFA's mild, as long as he's still up
and walking, you have nothing

Some breeders are no longer breeding by the time
you may need your guarantee honored, they may be
out of dogs completely! Be sure you contract places 
a reasonable time frame in which you can expect to
be compensated (and in which form you will recieve
such).  Otherwise, that 'great' breeder will usually come up
with all kinds of excuses to avoid a puppy or $$ back

Or, just do what we do, buy with the expectation we are
willing to gamble on a puppy from titled/koered proven
parents. Of course, we don't pay $1500+ for these puppies
either, we import our pups, they are ours free and clear.
No limited registration, no false sense of warm & fuzzy
from a contract that in all liklihood won't be honored.

Blitzen is right too, instead of circling the wagons, if
breeders in this country and charging top dollar and
bragging about buy-back policies, guarantees etc,
they need to bust out the check book when there is
a problem, not tell a buyer they need to 'wait', I'm
betting most sellers don't 'wait' for their $$ for the pup.
It's a double edged sword, buyers need to educate themselves,
and NOT try to hold a breeder responsible for their lack
of education. But breeders need to be straight to the point
too, no song and dance crap.

by laura271 on 08 May 2012 - 12:05

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Any chance that your dog's parents had their hips / elbows scored in Canada at the OVC? Folks here sometimes say OFA'd even though they used the OVC.

by AmbiiGSD on 08 May 2012 - 12:05

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Why people guarantee something that they have no control over, boggles my brain.

by Blitzen on 08 May 2012 - 12:05

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Joined: Mon Aug 09, 2004 06:49 am
I guaranteed pets against "any degree of HD that did not allow them to function as a normal pet". I know that's a swooping description that I could  have manipulated for my own benefit, but I didn't. GSD breeders need to expect more from their peers and out them on boards like this one when they cheat their buyers. Keep them honest. Other breeds do it. The truth is never libel.

by Blitzen on 08 May 2012 - 13:05

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Joined: Mon Aug 09, 2004 06:49 am
Ambii GSD, if a breeder doesn't want to guarantee against genetic issues and so states that to buyers, then I have no issues with that breeder. That's a breeders' option. 

by Ramage on 08 May 2012 - 13:05

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Joined: Thu Nov 08, 2007 03:30 pm
Also, sometimes prelimbs do not show up on the OFA website. I have a dog who was prelimbed Good and he's not on the OFA website, but I have the paperwork to prove it.

and of course as Blitzen pointed out, they are good about mispelling names. 

by aceofspades on 08 May 2012 - 13:05

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Joined: Tue Jul 27, 2010 03:57 am
I definitely searched the OFA website with every humanly possible spelling and ful and partial spelling I could think of. I did NOT think to check OVC though as the parents were advertised as hips "OFA" and my buyers contract clearly states OFA. He is two so OVC would have still been in operation at that time. That said I will see if they are listed through OVC and will try searching by reg # on the OFA website as well. As for the guarantee yes it was for replacement of a dog with moderate to severe HD. Mild HD would be replaced at the discretion of the breeder and it stated that to enforce tw guarantee that hips needed to be xrayed at 24 months. I understand that thr kind of a guarantee is usually just for warm fuzzier but isn't it kind of putting the cart before the horse if you're giving this guarantee and you don't even know the status of the hips I your breeding dogs? If they really have not been certified, they could be breeding dogs who are dyslastic and creating litters full of shit dogs. Their website brags about what they are trying to achieve as breeders but really doesn't it all start with the hips in a sense? At the end of the day I guess it isn't really a big deal for me since Ace game out on the winning end of this genetic roulette but what about those dogs that don't? I am going to check with OVC though. Just in case but I have my doubts t this point.

by workingdogz on 08 May 2012 - 14:05

Posts: 964
Joined: Thu Sep 22, 2011 10:42 pm
At least you know for next time
All buyers should research thoroughly.
Don't just take someones word for it. If it's
not on record somewhere, it didn't happen

Titles and health clearances are very easily
verified these days, so before cutting the check?
Make some calls or send some emails.
You may find out the sire or dam is not titled,
not koered, no OFA/A stamp etc.
This may come as a shock to some, but,
not all dog breeders/brokers are honest

by trixx on 08 May 2012 - 15:05

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i wanted to add that you say one of the parents was an import, if he has an A stamp you can go to the SV site in Germany and see if he  has pass his hips ( they have a database there). there is also a part on the form for OFA if they dont pass they dont have to put them up on the data base and that does included the prelims.  but if they pass they will put up on OFA site. also next time you are intrested in buying a pup you can also ask to see the OFA certifcate , that everyone gets when they  pass there OFA.

by aceofspades on 08 May 2012 - 15:05

Posts: 447
Joined: Tue Jul 27, 2010 03:57 am
Ha ha. I am learning that. I guess breeders must take the approach that most will never look up the info to verify it, AND that they are mostly selling to people who are not workin and titling and or breeding so most will never have their own dogs OFA which clearly can open a can of worms like I just did. How do you check the status of koerklasse? Ace's parents are not titled or koered but Janna's are and I have no reason to doubt their titles but after the year we've had I would like to know how to look all of this up. I was hoping to buy another dog next year and knowing what I know now, I know how differently I would like to do things.

by aceofspades on 08 May 2012 - 15:05

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Joined: Tue Jul 27, 2010 03:57 am
Trixx thanks. It is Janna who's sire is an import. But I still want to know how to verify all of this so that I know what to do for next time.

by workingdogz on 08 May 2012 - 15:05

Posts: 964
Joined: Thu Sep 22, 2011 10:42 pm
You can very easily contact the SV via email to verify
hip/elbow and working titles as well as koerung.
You can also many times google the sire/dams name
and it will bring up trial results, conformation
ratings, korungs etc.

Also, ask the breeder where the dog was titled,
which organization  if it was done here in NA.
Ask for copies of scorebooks, ahnentafel, OFA
certificates etc. They should at the very least be
able to produce those, they may not have copies,
but you should be able to SEE them in person.
Call and verify as well to be double sure.

Check AKC registration, ensure the sire/dam is indeed
registered, and that the breeder is in good standing!
If the breeder tells you the litter is registered, call and
verify this with AKC. You will need the sire & dam's
registered name. If the litter is not yet registered and
they are selling puppies, find out why. If you want to
'chance papers' coming later, ask to with hold partial
payment until papers are in hand.

Trust has to enter this of course, but, when you can
indeed do some legwork and verify everything you
have been told, why not? You wouldn't just blindly buy
a car or house without checking things out right?

by aceofspades on 08 May 2012 - 16:05

Posts: 447
Joined: Tue Jul 27, 2010 03:57 am
Workingdogz EVERYTHING you mention from check AKC and beyond is exactly what I wished I had known when buying Janna. I finally got her registration papers but they arrived a week ago and thanks to everyone here I know what to look for next time.

by Hundmutter on 08 May 2012 - 16:05

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Joined: Fri Jun 10, 2011 08:43 pm
Ah !  Thanks, guys, thats a much clearer picture about hip 'guarantees'.  Breeders in the UK tend not to go in for making
statements like that in their ads;  although I am sure many that have confidence in their breeding programmes may say
similar things to puppy buyers.

by aceofspades on 08 May 2012 - 17:05

Posts: 447
Joined: Tue Jul 27, 2010 03:57 am
So I did a search on the OVC website and nothing came up.  it does say only dogs submitted from 2007 on would be listed in the online database, and I know at least 2 of the  dogs they have would be post 2007 and 1 would be probably 2007 and the other 2007 or before. 

None came up in a search.  I am guessing that their dogs have not had hip x-rays at this point and we just came out on the god end of the genetic roulette wheel.

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