Wednesday, September 16, 2009


I would like to introduce you to the newest very rare Designer Dog Breed – the Chaussie; a Chow Australian Shepherd cross. This is Pickle. She is so rare that there is only ONE of her breed.

You look in the newspaper see all of the ‘wonderful’ ads for very rare and special dogs with oh-so-cute breed names like Chiweenies, Puggles, Shorkies, Boggles or Maltipoos or Cavachons or, or, or . . . the list goes on forever. Most of these “Designer Dogs” are in reality nothing more than MUTTS with a high price tag.

I see this and wonder, “What are people thinking??”

Well, I know what the ‘breeders’ are thinking --- MONEY.

But what about those who actually pay out as much or more money than it would cost to purchase a purebred show quality dog whose parents have had all the health clearances needed for the breed, are whelped into a caring home, properly housed, vetted and socialized. Are these dogs purchased to pump up the egos of the buyer so they can tell all of their friends that they have a very special rare expensive dog, a SomethingDoodle or a Chiwhatever?

Most people purchase a dog because they want the characteristics of that breed, be it a working dog or just a companion. And by choosing a dog from an ethical breeder, they are as sure as one can be that the dog they buy will have the characteristics of that breed, and will be healthy and mentally stable. They also will have a safety net for the dog if anything goes wrong and they are not able to keep the dog for its lifetime, as ethical breeders will ALWAYS take back a dog of their breeding anytime during the dog’s life. These dogs will NOT end up dumped in the local kill shelter or dropped off on a country road to fend for its self until it starves to death, or is maimed in a dog fight or hit by a car.

The safety net of most of the “Designer Breeds” lasts as long as it takes the check for the purchase to clear the bank.

In the very worse case, a known breed dog dumped at the dog pound will have a network of Purebred Rescues working to try to save its life and find a home for it. The ‘Designer Breed’, if taken to a dog pound is classified as what it is – a mixed breed dog – a MUTT with very few mixed breed rescues available to rescue it and prevent its last trip to the Kill Room.

Pickle, the Chaussie, was obtained as a puppy from the largest outlet for “Designer Dogs” in the nation – The DOG POUND. This dog was chosen by my friends who were won over by her personality and cuteness – and the Chaussie Breed was invented by them to describe her looks.

Was Pickle an intentional breeding? I doubt it – most likely she was the result of a couple of dogs running loose who ‘got together’ and an unwanted litter resulted. With at least one of the pups dumped at the dog pound. Perhaps Pickle had littermates at the shelter. It is hard to tell with mixed breeds – most likely her littermates looked nothing like her. The results of mixed breed litters are a lottery of which genes show up in the individual pups and is totally random. Sort of like - throw it in the Gene Pool and see what floats.

I wonder what happens to all of the puppies bred by these “Designer Dog” breeders which do not have the look the breeder wants. Most likely they are killed, if they are lucky, in a humane way.

So you want a “Designer Dog”. Go to your local shelter, find a dog which touches your heart – be it a puppy or an adult. Spend between $25 and $100 dollars and get a fully vetted and spay/neutered dog with all of its shots and use your imagination to name that breed.

Sorry, Chaussie is already taken.


  1. Oh, I am sooo in agreement with you. These 'designer' dogs are exactly what I grew up with as a kid - Heinz 57 or mutts, none of whom cost more than $20.00.

    I am afraid that a friend and I cause trouble on one of the popular sales sites by commenting on these "breeders" ethics. Doesn't stop them, but makes us feel better.

    And, having 2 Aussies (one a red merle) and 9 Sibes, I am totally in love with Pickles! (G) What a doll!

  2. Pickle is a beautiful pup. I especially like the way she is holding the huge Pooh-Bear entirely off the ground! The delicate little thing.