Sunday, March 11, 2012

An Inconvenient Truth

Ask anyone who knows me, I'm a tell-it-like-it-is and if-you-ask-my-honest-opinion-you're-going-to-get-it type of person. I have already categorically stated I'm a bad liar so if my opinion seems hurtful it's not because I want to be mean, it's because diplomacy is very hard for me to pull off. If I don't believe what I'm saying I can't imagine why anyone else would.

The same philosophy applies to my dog breeding practices. I do what I want because these are my dogs and I can't deny anyone else that right. If you own a dog that you've bred, responsibly or not, then that's your gig. However, if a person writes about their kennel in a way which misrepresents not only who they are but what breeding dogs is really like, I am certainly free to comment.

What I can't hold with is candy coating, and that's a difficult thing for me to say considering how much I love candy. Dog breeding is freakin' hard dammit. Anyone who posts about how much the dam loves her puppies has never had to put an expen around the whelping box so she doesn't abandon them for hours, or sit holding her down at 1am, 3am, 5am and 7am so she will feed them, or have to stop her from killing them as they are born, or has never come home to a dead puppy because 'loving momma' has laid on one and crushed it. I can categorically state, after decades of being around brood bitches: They. Do. Not. Love. Their. Puppies. Bitches act purely on instinct and that instinct is not always to care for their brood. If you are anthropomophizing a bitch to such an extent it means you are deceiving your audience and insulting the trials and tragedies other breeders have experienced.

When I write about the puppies I'm expecting, it will be the bald truth. They are a lot of work but I don't mind it because I love my dogs and what I do for them it doesn't really seem like work. What I won't write is how the puppies are magical angels, because they're not. Or that Leeloo loves them, because she - like most bitches - does not. Once the puppies are born Leeloo will act on pure, carnal instinct and I won't see my Darling Bubbalicious again until the last puppy has left my house.

I think anyone who only ever writes about how great the puppies are, how much the bitch loves her babies, and what a wondrous experience dog breeding is, does the dog fancy a serious disservice, and illustrates blatant ignorance and inexperience.  It belittles the heart-ache, hard work, disappointment, irritation, despair, blood, sweat and tears that hundreds of responsible breeders go through in order to plan and raise a litter of puppies.

I write about the truth of it - the truth can be funny, sad, heart breaking, emotional, angry, despairing, joyful, uplifting, delightful and stark. Sometimes I've chosen to restrict or edit the things I post, mostly because they're private matters or I'm simply not ready to disclose the information; however, it's never been in the name of deception or masking the truth. There are just some things only I get to know about my life.

I choose to write a public blog about my experiences with the dogs and that means I have a responsibility to remove the rose colored glasses. People should know the truth of what it took for me and Leeloo to get a puppy to 8 weeks old so someone could provide it a loving forever home. I started this blog mostly so I could look back at my experiences and learn from them, so potential homes could watch their puppies grow and so people could know what it's like to live with a Ridgeback. This blog is more than 4 years old now and loyal readers have been through a lot of shit with me. There may be a copy-cat blog out there that attempts to imitate, but they can never duplicate, because I don't live in a world of rainbows and unicorns - I live in a stable, normal reality where bad shit happens, things irritate me, and plans don't always pan out. I write because it's what I'm compelled to do. 

No comments: