Inside Baseball (and Your Dog’s Front End)

“Inside baseball,” a pretty old term, has its roots in a particular style of play in the game of baseball in which bunts, stealing bases, and minor hits, were relied upon to win a game, rather than flashy tactics, like mouth-dropping home runs.  Over time, the expression has morphed into its present day usage: A reference to highly specialized knowledge.  NPDD will never “dumb down” information about, say, soundness in our dogs because we think our readers are intelligent enough to grasp a concept, and smart enough to know it matters. A good example is the importance of sound structure to anyone who plays with their dog, hikes with their dog, lets their dog get up on the bed or couch, or competes with their dog. In other words, it matters to all dogs.

In the “inside baseball” world of dogs, it’s said that nothing is harder to get and easier to lose than a “good front” on a dog. In most breeds, a dog’s forequarters carry almost 2/3 of a dog’s weight  (the shoulder blade, upper arm, forearm, pasterns and feet), and because of the complex structure occurring at a dog’s front end, the forequarters are more vulnerable to break down. It behooves breeders to learn to recognize a sound front in their breed, work on getting it, and strive to keep it. This means understanding the significance of bone length, and recognizing appropriate angulation for their breed. Does anyone think that  breeders who whip out designer breeds with no particular goal in mind, let alone testing for health, think about this?  Are they surrounded by breed standards? And in the course of creating a “doodle,” “poo,” or “uggle,” which breed standard trumps when striving for a sound dog?

Heritage breeders matter because a sound dog matters, and that means breeders who know “inside baseball.”

We remind readers of our search option seen at the top right hand side of any page. Type in “structure,” or “front,” and read up on anything that’s been posted on the subject.

Image: “Hunting Scenes” by lfred Duke is available as a print, wall decor, accessories and more here.


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