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Breeding Program Development and Expansion


We help your program identify your goals by spending time gathering information from your organisation. This process aims to gather essential information from, and interview, the key people in your organisation in management, and in the field to ensure we understand your client needs and expectations in order to enhance your dog production.  Of equal importance is knowing the weaknesses you wish to minimize in your dog colony, and the desirable traits you wish to maintain and solidify.

During this phase we will work with you to;

  • Establish realistic goals and targets for the development of your program

  • Set timelines

  • Decide how growth and success will be measured

  • Discuss breeding program development within your organisational framework – or alongside planned development in other areas.

  • Confer about client needs, replacement working dog needs, and waiting list requirements

  • Discuss impact and management of growth on systems

  • Discuss staff education and development


Program Observation, Review & Reporting

This can be challenging but also very exciting as we identify the building blocks for the future in consultation with your management staff and in line with your strategic goals.

The critical learning at this stage is that appraisal does not mean a backward step!

We will spend more time with your dogs and staff cementing ideas in the following areas;

  • Discuss and observe concerns or positive trends in your program
  • Observe keys lines and breeding animals already well established
  • Discuss historical pedigrees and statistics
  • Discuss goals and observe your concept of the ultimate working dog – or versions of such a dog.
  • Talk through needs specific to your environment
  • Identify resources, contacts and collaborative relationships already in place

Dog, Pup and Semen Aquisition

One of the most effective ways to progress your program quickly is to introduce genetic material from dogs that are proven to enhance or dilute trends in a breeding program.

Career Dogs has relationships with breeding programs, relating to many different breeds of dog, in all corners of the globe. We will find the dog that can offer you these options. We do the leg work required to search for dogs or semen, researching pedigrees and gathering data on the dog and their production history.

Depending on your country and its import restrictions, options that may be available are – the import of adult breeding animals, the lease of broods, puppy purchase, stud dog lease or frozen semen acquisition.

In order to present options in these areas, Career Dogs Australia needs to discuss with you;

  • Production number targets
  • Purebred/crossbred requirements
  • Pup acquisition
  • Adult breeding dogs, stud service and frozen semen acquisition
  • Reproductive technologies available
  • Options for breeding dogs to travel for breeding activities
  • With this information at hand, we can present you with all options. We aim to ensure you maintain genetic diversity, and continue to develop your working dog ‘type’ and success rate.

Production Planning

Production planning is often where a breeding program needs the most support.

Contrary to common belief, production planning is not just breeding a certain number of pups or training a specific number of dogs over a set time frame.

Factors to consider in planning your dog production include:

Mapping out the breeding career of each dog Knowing how each line will be managed Establishing what lines need to be bred to draw out the potential of both Planning how the program will react and adjust to recognised trends once progeny statistics begin to surface A back-up plan Insuring the line will not be lost due to poor management; and Identifying which litters will be a focus for replacement breeder selection (succession planning). In a program that runs on a “wait and see” approach there will often be disappointment – especially when succession planning is not well mapped out for key breeding lines or key individual dogs.

Often a brood will be bred ‘one-last-time’ in the hope of a miracle (otherwise known as a daughter:-)). We help you to avoid panic, and enjoy the security of replacing your breeding dogs while they remain in their prime.

Career Dogs can help by discussing;

  • Breeding dog career management
  • Succession planning
  • Brood cycle and season management
  • A process for proving studs
  • Pedigree research, genotyping, foundation line development
  • Temperament assessment and health criteria for breeding clearance
  • Working dog ‘type’ requirements
  • Number requirements (puppies to be bred or purchased)
  • Program seasonal requirements – scheduling busy and quiet times of year due to climate or staffing absence

Breeding Dog Assessment and Selection

An experienced breeder in the service dog industry will often confirm that a good working dog is not necessarily a good breeding dog, and vice versa.

A service dog breeding animal has unique qualities that can be difficult to articulate or define, but having observed such dogs over the years, I have found that they become easily recognisable during assessment.

We have extensive experience in assessing potential breeding dogs and can work alongside you to ensure that the dogs moving on to your breeding program offer great potential. It is important that the selection of your breeding animals is made in collaboration with your training department, but not exclusively by it.

We will work with your goals in mind to develop required working type and quality;

  • Selection of breeding dogs
  • Liaising with vets, specialists and laboratories for the assessment of health
  • Coordinating DNA testing
  • Conformation assessment and reporting
  • Maintenance of foundation breeding lines
  • Managing genetic diversity and outcrosses

Breeding Dog Succession Planning

Career Dogs can assist in maintaining breeding lines to ensure they continue, remain flexible and improve in quality from one generation to the next. We discuss with you;

The planning of replacements

  • Maintenance of lines – successfully breeding mothers, daughters and half siblings from the same line to prevent a narrow range of working type.
  • Ensuring inclusion of known lines, outcrosses and line-breeding where appropriate to draw maximum potential from your breeding colony

It is important to have processes in place once a quality program is established, to ensure it is maintained.

Successful planning in this regard ensures quality lines are not mismanaged or lost over time.

Staff Team Workshops

Career Dogs Australia is experienced in improving the practical skills and knowledge base of service dog organisations through staff lectures and workshops.

We cater to small or large groups with a group of six or more being ideal.

Topics include:

Breeding theory

  • Reproductive anatomy
  • Cycles, seasons and ovulation timing
  • Natural breeding & vaginal AI’s
  • Artificial breeding concepts
  • Care of the Stud Dog
  • Gestation – Care of the Brood
  • 3rd Trimester – care of the Brood
  • Whelping – stage 1 and 2 labour
  • Post whelp care – lactation and weaning
  • Caesarean section – post-operative care

Lectures in Basic or Advanced Genetics

  • Introductory Genetics
  • Complex Modes of Inheritance
  • Prioritising Traits
  • Interpretation and Use of Pedigrees
  • Lectures and workshops in canine husbandry (both breeding and generalised)
  • Subject areas of choice – reproductive health, ears, skin, digestive health, weight management, orthopaedic health, post-op care, wound care, first aid, infant puppy health care – nervous system development, monitoring and health care, critical care, Brood care – post-whelp, post C-section, weaning, condition and weight management, supplementation of diets, cycles/seasons, ovulation timing, practical breeding, fresh AI’s, artificial reproductive technologies.
  • Lectures and workshops in practical whelping and reproductive management of broods and stud dogs
  • Lectures and workshops in litter socialising and temperamental development

Contact Career Dogs Australia and find out how applying a little experience and science to your program will give your breeding program a quantum leap into the future.


Career Dogs Australia (and Managing Director Lauren Elgie) is a registered dog breeder with the Queensland Government, Breeder Identification Number BIN0005182254306