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AKC strips winning Dutch red and white setter (2) update

In case there is a setter heaven, Harry would smile now.This is an update of the topic on AKC strips winning Dutch red and white setter, full contents kept.

The Irish red and white setter bred in 1998 in the Netherlands from red parents, is purified from behind his back blame on purity by a DNA-testing scheme in the USA. A research done by Mars Veterinary revealed, there is no difference in his American descendants DNA and those officially registered.

Harry and his descendants were stripped from American Kennel Club (AKC) registry. In FCI-registry his life continues. His daughter Pallas Green Harriet is Irish Field Trial Champion, the first Dutch born and raised Irish setter since 1880 to do so. She is trained and trialed by leading Irish red and white working setter breeder Jim Sheridan (Craigrua) in Ireland. He currently has a litter from....Harry, who died recently, eleven years of age.

See clip on Irish moors by Merete http://irishsetters.ning.com/video/field-trial-wicklow-mountains. Related: White on a red setter, hate it or love it? http://irishsetters.ning.com/forum/topics/865021:Topic:10848

What is your opionion, should the AKC reconsider registry?
topic before:

Worlds probably most adventurous Irish setter, "Harry", again makes headlines.

Today the red and white setter, born in 1998 at the place of Joop Harms in Uden, the Netherlands from all red parents amidst of red littermates, features in The Dog Press in the story "AKC and the Irish Red and White Setters", by Mark R. Atkins.

In a nutshell: Harry and his descendants are stripped from records of the American Kennel Club (AKC) although entered in FCI. So in most of the world a recognized Irish red and white setter, but banned by the biggest kennelclub in the USA.

Harry returned a few months ago at the place of his owner, Gerard Mirck. He was in Ireland for matings. His trips before included the USA twice: a mating and field trials (walking). He won.

As well, he travelled all over Europe for training and trialling, competing more times in the European championship for working Irish setters. Once he was vice-winner, in Germany.

What is your opinion: is the AKC right or wrong in stripping Harry? And what are your arguments?

Henk ten Klooster.

You can access "AKC and the Irish Red and White Setters" by clicking http://www.thedogpress.com/ClubNews/AKC/06_IrishRW.Setters.Rec.AKC....

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Replies to This Discussion

Once we had here a marketing slogan for King peppermint saying “King is only King when on it is: King”.

It ain’t that simple for Harry, growing up amidst red brothers and sisters, first an Irish setter thereafter an Irish Red and White Setter on pedigree. Recognized by the FCI, registered and thereafter stripped by the AKC.

There are many more things in life more interesting than the question whether or not an Irish red and white setter is an Irish Red &White Setter or an Irish Red Setter, color red and white.

Still it inspires a lot of setter fanciers to contribute to a topic like this. The main question “Was the AKC right or wrong in stripping Harry & descendants from their registry?” is snowed under by sidetracks and off topic writings in which passions run high sometimes.

Harry’s history combines hell & heaven, horror & humor. Providing passion & pleasure in fields, behind computer screens headaches as well. So I will end this topic as the hunting season is in this weekend. Quietly sitting & thinking out there accompanied by red setters, I’m sure some of Harry’s memories will provide a big laugh.

Thanks Harry and hooray for Harriet!
And the answer to the question posed at the beginning of this topic, "Is the AKC right or wrong in stripping Harry ?"

"The AKC is wrong," says Henk. "We made our country change Harry's registration."

"We are right," says the AKC. "We have criteria for the registration of dogs in our country, that cannot be interferred with by individuals from another country."

All that has resulted from the subsequent discussion is a strong feeling that Henk does not have much knowledge about world-wide IRWS. He speaks from a very limited involvement with the breed and his argument is coloured by prejudice in favour of his friend and some preconceived ideas of his own making.
The smile that arises when "Harry" is mentioned in IRWS circles is caused by the puzzled expressions and the question, "Who is Harry?" Harry may be big in the Netherlands.... but elsewhere?
:-)))))))) For famous you need in the Netherlands not only red and white but blue as well (colors of our flag). Plus some orange. How about The Roscommon Setter for such a breed (that founding IRWS family was from Dutch origin - originally Westenra).

Serious, I think you've ended up with IRWS in a dead end street, threat of again a vanishing variety due to the average high coefficient of inbreedingi. Thats why Harry and more Harry's -in last case hopefully with more non related lines- could help prevend this from happening.

For registration theres always something to arrange with some commonsense - like A,B,C registry. I heard rumors of IRWS people looking in France for possibilities - but thats nearly all Moanruad so more of the same you've already got. If you want to make the IRWS healthy broadbased again, start looking in Scandinavian countries.

As for the topic - the AKC may be right in their rules. But the consequence of those rules -likewise in the UK where red x Ired and white is forbidden- is goodbye to IRWS later. You know the routing how to change things (Secret & Whisper). So get those rules changed.

IF a new red x red and white scheme is introduced, why not do it this time better than the reds did, losing most main families. Now that is farsighted.......
Henk wrote "Serious, I think you've ended up with IRWS in a dead end street, threat of again a vanishing variety due to the average high coefficient of inbreeding"

What figure do you have for the high average coefficient of inbreeding? Have you actually worked out COIs for IRWS litters? Are you talking about show or working IRWS , or both?
This is ONE source. Margaret wrote in the topic Conflict over COI (maximum of 5 in the Netherlands proposed and meanwhile accepted in the AGM of the Dutch Irish setter club (for red and red and white) under huge protest of a group of breeders::

>"I"ts a proposal to be welcomed in general. However its easier for numerically large and well established breeds, but may be harder for numerically small breeds, especially where there are already other restrictions on breeding. In my breed, Irish Red and White Setters, where all the dogs originate from a small handfull of survivors in the 1970s, a COI of 5 or less is quite difficult to achieve. And in those countries where the dogs have to meet other requirements for breeding as well , like a good hip score or a working test, its even more difficult. If we can get a COI of 10 or less, we are doing pretty well!
For the working IRWS which have a very small gene pool, I would think a COI of below 5 would be nearly impossible , it could only be done by outcrossing to show bred dogs - which most field triallers would not want to do".

You're not again saying your info is incorrect as usual?????
Cant argue this time :))
I'll start a new topic on this.... we're straying a long way from 'was the AKC right or wrong...'
COI has everything to do with IR(W)S, registry, future, health. It does not stray away a long way from 'AKC right or wrong'.

Just type Irish red and white setter in Google, number two http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Irish_Red_and_White_Setter and read:

"Many working dog breeds are not officially registered with any kennel club or breed registry. The Irish Red and White Setter is one of those breeds where many parents and offspring may not be "papered" but are still part of the breed. Not being registered in a breed registy does not make a dog any less a representative of its breed. Many working breeds are moving away from the "purebred" notion and instead are breeding for phenotype, not genotype, which will help prevent the working dog populations from acquiring genetic diseases such as we've seen in the last century with "pure" breed.
As working dogs depend on health, ability, and temperament to be successful, it is important to breed for those characteristics and allow a lot of variability within the breed. A continuing loss of genetic diversity (such as has been seen in most modern "purebreds" because of their closed gene pools) leads to less healthy, less resistant animals that are less able to do their jobs." (end of quote)

The AKC wants according to more posters four generations of purebred IRWS. So the registry highway is open for the Irish red and white setter in the USA, soon to be recognized as official breed (January 1, 2009).

With an average COI, higher than the maximum above which breeding in the Netherlands is forbidden, this closed registry means asking for problems.
Let's get this into perspective -
How many IRWS are there in the USA?
If there is an official number, I would be very grateful to be told. The AKC only recognises IRWS this year so how can the breed have 'papers'? There are many registers in the USA where there are 'no questions asked' and dogs get 'papers' from all of them.

How many IRWS are there in the Netherlands?
Is there an official number? Please let me know. If breeding cannot be done with an average COI below 5, is there any breeding at all from a breed revived from 7 registered dogs in the country of origin? Is this why you promote 'curiosities' like Harry?

In Ireland, the breeding of IRWS, with 'papers' has mostly been confined to 'working/FT dogs' many of which have been exported around the world.

By far the largest number of registered IRWS have been bred in the UK - roughly 5,000 in the last 28 years, of which there are roughly 2,000 alive now. All of these dogs not only have 'papers' but a great deal is recorded regarding their health and performance.

After 20 years of work on this aspect of IRWS, I can say that today, there are no significant problems in the population that point to a 'dead end' in the breed. If anyone has evidence to the contrary, I beg them to let me know.

Not all COIs are high, there are opportunities for breeding litters with low COIs. That there are breeders who exercise their choice to breed closely is undoubted - question them about it and they will tell you that they want to preserve working ability or keep their own particular line going.
A closed registry does not mean 'problems' if breeders act with knowledge and integrity - nor will cross-breeding on a whim guarantee dogs with perfect health and performance.

And finally, orange Irish Setters or IRWS? May go down in Holland... but anywhere else? Ugh!!
Congratulations if everything is ok for IRWS in the UK like you report. Yes that puts things into perspective!

So you already have results from your recent inquiry inspired by in your own words “As you may remember, coming from only 7 original IRWS, the genetic worry has been the emergence of inherited disease and the threat of Inbreeding Depression.”?

Well that’s good news, it might document population geneticists warning against a high coi, might need some help from you to learn the truth. And we might as well stop our discussions here, as you can provide answers already.

Congratulations as well for your wisdom as stated on the UK website: “There are other unwanted conditions in the breed such as Haemolytic Anaemia, heart problems, allergies and cancers but these are not hereditary and are not enough to be considered a breed problem.” Good to know these are not hereditary! Did you notify scientists who have differing opinions?

Thanks for your remark “A closed registry does not mean 'problems' if breeders act with knowledge and integrity”. How do you make sure this happens?

Of course every fancier should have great respect for the health monitoring system for IRWS in the UK and your role in it.

But analysing your posts also clarifies you need an independent population geneticist plus some other critical people on other terrains just to make sure, that you ARE right. If so, you deserve a big hooray for your accomplishments with the lucky seven!

And yes if so, it is right opposing every "new" IRWS entering, Harry's, Secrets and Whispers apart from the lucky seven like those population geneticists are preaching.
First, there is an on-going study into IRWS Breed Diversity and the Gene Pool by one of the World Top Ten Geneticists, who is independent and whose Report will be given at the 25th Anniversary Conference in June 2009.

Second, being aware that genetic problems MIGHT occur and keeping a look out for them is no bad thing, surely?

Third, the reason the 'unwanted conditions' are not as yet considered hereditary in the breed is because there are not enough cases to prove it.

Fourth, getting breeders to act with knowledge and integrity would not be the nigh impossible task it is, if they belonged to a breed club in their country and supported communal action in the cause of breed health.

Finally, I take it you don't know how many IRWS there are in the Netherlands?
First now that is something to hang out in dog world, congratulations. So who’s that geneticist and does he support your theories?

Second, do you think anyone would object? Question was whether or not you have enough answers to your own recent inquiry regarding your own fear for inbreeding depression in IRWS and threat of inherited disease because of in your own words “only” seven original IRWS. With your is meant here: public records of your club.

Third, stating in the website of your club in the UK that “Haemolytic Anaemia, heart problems, allergies and cancers”…. “are not hereditary and are not enough to be considered a breed problem” here altering it in “ARE NOT AS YET considered hereditary in the breed is because there are not enough cases to prove it” underlines that you should change the text in your website. The meaning is quite different as you no doubt have noticed yourself!?

Finally you want me to count the IRWS first in the world now only here. This is off topic but ok. Whatever the number of IRWS officially registered by FCI, AKC or Kennel Club (UK) alive (a guess: 3000-3500) we will always differ about the number of red and whites.

In my eyes a red and white Irish setter is just that, be it on pedigree a red setter or red and white setter. For me, there is only one (1) Irish setter. And one (1) more in Germany I see on the list. Is there an average number of pups in a litter of IRWS known? Is it steady or in decline (one of the first signs of inbreeding depression).




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