A Passage To India

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I woke up this morning to a very nice email from Ranjit Menon in India which included the photo above of his two-year-old boy, Ethan. I had never met Ranjit before, much less been to India, but something about this dog struck me immediately. I KNOW this dog! The second photo confirmed it for me.

This dog had to have a double dose of genes from The Iceman and he was a dead ringer for the famous Iceman son, Dakota (shown here)

Sure enough, when Ranjit sent the pedigree, it showed that Ethan goes back on his father's side to The Iceman and that his mother was a Dakota daughter!

How did those genes get from our place in Canada to India?

St-Pierre Ethan was born in Hungary and exported from there to India. His dam came from the Heezedorn kennels of Holland who had imported Dakota from Tikki Smith's Lasquite kennels. His sire, Ch Dein Hards Keep On Trying, was born in Sweden but was a grandson of Ch Benbaron's Knight O'Iceman. Happily, those two descendants of Iceman combined in Europe to produce Ethan. Ethan is inbred on The Iceman and looks just like his grandfather, Dakota.

Genes are both amazing and mysterious. They combine in so many ways that both confound and sometimes delight us. We can't see them. We can only see some of what they manifest. They show us one thing but hide another. Thanks to air travel, frozen semen, the Internet and dedicated or curious breeders those genes get packaged up and sent all around the world.

Ethan is an example of what can happen when one COMBINES the genes from a particular dog. Sadly, most breeders fail to understand this and they outcross time and again. Their pedigrees become so much "chop suey" and their breeding programs are reduced to blind luck. It doesn't have to be that way.

Iceman's genes have made a passage to India via Europe. Fascinating!

Update Dec 15, 2012... Ranjit reports that Ethan just went to his first dog shows and completed his Indian Championship by taking three Challenge Certificates along with a couple of Best Of Breeds. Well done!