Hello, first off, I'm new to all this so bear with me... I've owned dogs before, one mutt and a purebred Shih Tzu. Well, as I said in my introduction thread, my boyfriend and I got a dog together and decided on a lab. We went to the local humane society before contacting the lab rescue and ended up finding a rather handsome, 1-year-old, yellow boy. The shelter had him listed as a lab mix based on his legginess and thin appearance (he was underweight at the time). We were interested in labs in the first place because we wanted a gun dog, however it wasn't a requirement, otherwise we would have gone to a breeder. Well, Teller is everything we wanted and more; he seems to be a natural. Despite having been neglected by previous owners and spending most of his short life in a shelter, he retrieves with a soft mouth, loves swimming/water retrieves, drops the dummy/ball at your feet, is extremely interested in birds/bird scent, and even points! He's a very quick learner and extremely eager to please, sometimes learning commands after only a few tries, but also active, and an independent thinker when he needs to be. Once we brush up on his obedience skills, my boyfriend and I both think he will make a talented gun dog.
Now my question is concerning Purebred Alternative Listing with the AKC. I got the opinion of a few family friends who train gun dogs and they agree that Teller could probably achieve a Junior Hunter title once we've finished his training and have hunted him. I've been reading a lot about the hunting tests (not field trials) and you can compete in them if you have a PAL number from the AKC; this would be my only motivation for seeking one (I honestly don't care a jot if T is 100% purebred champion stock). I know the dog has to meet the breed standards and look like the breed, but my question is: to what extent? I am a little worried because although Teller looks like a lab, he doesn't meet the technical breed standard 100%. According to the vet he is almost, if not all lab. Like I said, we don't care about the PAL for any other purpose than getting him involved in hunting trials, so we don't want to shell out money for that doggy DNA test those companies have. I've seen a couple of posts similar to mine about other breeds and the general consensus is as long as the dog looks like a passable version of whatever breed, they can get a number.
The reason I am concerned about rejection is because Teller looks like a lab, but almost a spot-on representation of the "American" or field-bred lines. He has a shorter coat, long/skinny tail, longer legs, slender body, smaller head, and longer muzzle. The lack of the "otter tail" and double-coat are the points for doubt. However, Teller meets the lab's personality description 100%. He also has the correct stance, expressive eyes, big paws and nose, soft mouth, etc. He doesn't meet the standard for weight and is at the upper-end for height, but like I said he came to us underweight and is steadily gaining some back (right now he's at 50 lbs). I was just wondering if anybody had any experiences to share about PAL registration and from some of the submissions I've seen (one was a husky with pendant ears), I don't know if my concern is founded. I was hoping to at the very least get some input over my chances at getting accepted and any advice.
Based on these pictures, he should easily get a PAL number. Have fun with him!!
Agree w/ Eresh! you should have no problem at all.
WindyCanyon Girls, August 2014
Thanks so much! I just got him full time because my boyfriend moved and his apartments won't allow dogs over 50 lbs. I look forward to training him, I think Teller would really benefit from having some sort of structured job, lol. He's got the energy for it.
You don't need a DNA test. You'll need to have the dog fixed if he isn't already, provide a couple of photos I believe and send in the paperwork. You dog looks lab enough. If they cared that much about the standard they wouldn't be registering silver labs as chocolate! LOL
Yeah, I think the DNA tests are sort of a fad trend too, I wouldn't get one unless I had an obvious Heinz 57 and was curious just what traits came from which breeds. And that's true, yellowbelly, I never thought of it that way. Teller is just so scrawny with that super pronounced tuck that I thought they might wonder if he was part baby deer or greyhound lol. I guess he is just going through an awkward phase but it's so funny to watch him bounding around the house like a horse trying to chase a soccer ball and knocking things over. Thanks for the responses, though. They have made me feel a lot better, especially since everybody asks what he is when we go somewhere. "Oh, that's not a lab, he's too tall and doesn't have the right tail." Someone has even asked if he was a golden retriever... and I am like, "If he's not furry enough to be a lab, how could he be a golden?" I don't know why I have such an issue with people asking what kind of dog I have, nobody ever asks about my Shih Tzu, but I just find it sort of rude to have people tell me why my dog isn't what I say he is. It's not like I am trying to pass off a dalmatian as a St. Bernard, you know?