“New Russian” Doberman
Almost all dog breeds cultivated in the USSR over the past decades, today are changing their “face” improving type, exterior, behavior; In breeding, new producers are used, representatives of the best plants in the world. Most breeders voluntarily and enthusiastically seek to obtain modern type offspring from their dogs that meet the requirements of FCI international standards.
The global “restructuring” in the Dobermann breed that began in the late 80s in Russia reminds me of the situation in which the East European Shepherd (VEO) breed was previously found. At that time, I worked as a senior livestock specialist in the Moscow City Club of Service Dog Breeding (MGKSS) and, as a service, talking with owners of dogs of all service breeds that our club was breeding, I witnessed the changes taking place in the breed of VEO.
Imported “German” shepherds (mainly from the German Democratic Republic, Poland, Czechoslovakia) were occasionally introduced into the breeding of VEO before, but the addition of their blood was purely symbolic in nature, neither the type nor the exterior of the VEO changed significantly.
When a stream of “pure Germans” surged into the country (90% were males), the situation in the breed escalated. For many decades, VEO was the main and largest breed of service dogs: bred throughout the country, it had a huge army of fans. Their objections to mating German shepherd dogs with VEO females were withdrawn in 1990 when, by order of the Central Club for Service Dog Breeding DOSAAF, the international FCI standard of the German Shepherd was introduced and the old (1976) domestic standard for VEO was automatically canceled.
Naturally, the livestock that has been bred in the country for decades did not meet the requirements of the new standard for the German shepherd. Type, height at the withers (male “German” is 10-15 cm lower than the “eastern”), the structure of the head, limbs, apex, color – everything had to go through a long, multi-stage selection adjustment. First of all, the “thoroughbreds” began the struggle to reduce growth.
Mating “German x VEO” became widespread and as a result of this heterogeneous selection a huge number of the so-called “intermediate” type was obtained with increased heterozygosity, but phenotypically still gravitating to VEO and unable to compete with pure German shepherds at exhibitions. Instead of limiting the pedigree use of the “intermediate” type in breeding (the goal of heterogeneous selection in this situation is to get a broodstock for further breeding) or to knit them with “pure Germans” (which was almost impossible, since there were “pure Germans” not so much, and which of the breeders would agree to tie such a bitch with a male of “intermediate” type), these “semi-German dogs of VEO” began to be mated with the remaining females of VEO and the number of females of the “intermediate” type.
Some of the “intermediate” type females nevertheless mated in a relatively homogeneous selection with imported male German shepherd dogs (which was true), but in terms of the number of offspring produced by them (which generally met the hopes of breeders seeking a “new” shepherd dog) could not compete with the huge stock that was received from males of the “intermediate” type – generally heterogeneous and gravitating in type to VEO.
As a result, having lost genetically pure VEOs, having received a large livestock of the “intermediate” type, which did not fit the FCI standard, it became necessary to return to examining these dogs at exhibitions according to the old DOSAAF standard (1976). But it was already not the same VEO!