Gilberts' K-9 Seminars News & Review
Copyright (c) 2004-2009 Gilberts' K-9 Seminars

The above Article is Copyrighted (c) 2004-2009 Gilberts' K-9 Seminars.
Permission to reprint can be obtained from Gilberts' K-9 Seminars -
By E. M. Gilbert Jr.

ABC’s of Dog Breeding, What Every Breeder Should Know, A Home Study Program for Dog Breeders, by Claudia Waller Orlandi Ph.D.
Order book and/or contact Dr. Orlandi at

What a title! – it says it all. The title is not false and misleading advertising. The title is a statement of fact. Except this home study program is not only for breeders – it should be studied by all in the fancy: owners, exhibitors, handlers and judges. Claudia shatters many breeding myths and replaces them with facts.  The home study program contains a textbook, workbook exercises and a flashcard set. When a breeder sends their complete workbook exercises to the American Kennel Club they will receive a Certificate of Completion. AKC does this as a part of their on going effort to support breeder education. As Claudia states: “The goal of ABC’s of Dog Breeding is to clearly and succinctly explain key genetic principles and to choose concepts based on their importance and practical use for the dog breeder.” Math is practically non-existent throughout the text. This is the only book that I have read in my approximately 50 years in the sport that makes genetics easily understandable. The book shatters many breeding myths. Many hold to Galton’s Law and/or Tail Male/Tail Female theories of breeding. Facts debunk both of these concepts. Claudia does not speak down to her audience, she places the facts in understandable terms and lists the source texts for those who desire to pursue the technical details. Two extremely helpful features of each chapter are Real Life Stuff and Smart Charts. The Real Life Stuff highlights important and frequently misunderstood breeding concepts. The Smart Charts summarize key points in the chapter. Claudia’s background in purebred dogs goes back to being a Junior Handler in the 1960’s with her Saint Bernard. She has been involved with other breeds – but her 20 year passion is breeding Basset Hounds under the Topsfield Kennel name. Claudia and her husband Dom have owned and produced approximately 100 champions. The records held by Topsfield Basset Hounds would fill a book. The ABC’s of Dog Breeding is not just based on theoretical study, but on practical breeding experience. The entire purebred fancy owes Claudia for sharing her knowledge with all of us. I only hope that the fancy takes advantage of this opportunity to truly learn from her efforts on our behalf. Thank you Claudia for sharing your knowledge and passion.