Tuesday, November 9, 2010

To The Point

I had published a post called Affected.  In my mind, the purpose of the post was to share what I was feeling and to make information available.  Did I fall down with my ability to communicate what I wanted?  I think so.  The bottom line is I am now the owner of a dog affected with CEA.  Did this hurt?  Of course.  And I wanted others to have the information that I now had so that they could learn.  From my mistakes and discoveries.  It was not intended to put people down, place blame or pass the buck.  And I apologize if that's how it was perceived.

I pulled the post because I don't like the battle ground it's become.  That's not why I blog.  For the most part I write because I enjoy it.  I want to tell stories, share thoughts and part of my life.  I don't write a blog to be famous, controversial or to promote myself.  That's not what I'm interested in.  

I think, I want, for the collective whole of the Border Collie world to accept that CEA is out there and that not all people test.  And we (as a collective) need to push for better regulations.  I say this because it is important.  Why should someone new to the sport have to talk to the "right" people to learn about it?  I want it to be easy for people to get information.  I will help and share with anyone who asks it of me - to the best of my limitations.  And I always forward people to breeders or handlers that are more skilled than I when I can't help them.  I love the dogs.  I really truly do.  And I want others to be able to easily access and learn about them.  

That was my point.  I wanted anyone who had a dog with any of that breeding to be able to go, "Oh, my dog has those bloodlines too!  Maybe I should get them tested."  That's why I put the pedigree information out there.  Not to be negative.  To share what I've learned.  I put the OptiGen information out there for the same reason.  And I don't believe just because a dog has bad genetic results that that dog is "bad" or should be destroyed.  I don't believe the dog's in Reba's pedigree are bad.  They've proven themselves in their discipline.  I do believe we need to do a better job.  My informal poll today found about half (give or take a few) test.  Half do not.  

To be brutally honest.  I'm a sponge.  I absorb information like crazy.  And when I spoke of going to look at Reba at a trial no one told me that I should ask for testing.  As someone new to the trial and herding world, wouldn't that have been the kind thing to do?  I take responsibility for the choices I've made and I want others to learn from the mistakes I've made.  But the rest of the herding world needs to step up to the plate and advocate for change so that ALL dogs are tested.  So that just like ISDS, it becomes a registry matter.  That's the point I was trying to make.  

The bottom line is I learned a painful lesson.  I didn't want it to be wasted.  I wanted others to learn from my experience so that with luck and care, it doesn't happen again.  Would you want this to happen again?  So why not educate and advocate for change?

And for the record - when I'm quoting hard and fast facts - expect to see a reference.  I'm way too academic not to.  Everything else is an opinion or something I've picked up over time.  Be it right, or wrong.  

Got it?

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