Post by cddexter on Sept 19, 2019 16:06:07 GMT
Just thought I'd put this somewhere it won't get lost:
Forty years ago, there were only about 200+ Dexter owners in the US. I knew most of them.
It was a commonly held opinion by all that the senior bull in the field was the sire of all calves, regardless of what else was there; end of sentence!
If it wasn't black, it was red. This explains all the mis-registered duns until the red test was available in the late 80's.
Because most owners were hobbyists, a lot of the paperwork was not considered serious stuff, so if nothing got registered for a year or two, it was okay to guess the parents because for the most part, it didn't really matter.
No one had a clue about dwarfism. It was just one of those things that came with the breed. You lived with it and the consequences of bulldog calves. Early PR stuff even referred to aborted calves but said the milk production wasn't affected (see, just business as usual).
No one selected for any particular traits, except height. Conformation wasn't a consideration.
If the result was small and chunky/clunky it was a Dexter-type, or a short-leg, and therefore desirable. If the result was taller it was referred to as a Kerry-type, or long-leg. These last two designations were considered derogatory.
Heights varied from 36" to 52", with no consistency because chondro was used to artificially reduce size. The taller genes still lurked under the surface.
It was not unusual to have more than one breed all running together in the field. If the calf was solid colored, it often got registered as a Dexter, regardless of parentage, especially if it was a heifer and therefore more desirable. I kid you not.
I want to make these points because there is this tendency to slavishly follow the paperwork, and it's a false expectation that what you get is accurate. Definitely some is 100%, but a lot of the records are nowhere near even 50%. Don't get caught up in crediting--or discrediting--an animal just based on recorded pedigree.
Cheers, Carol Davidson.