Our Breeding Ideology
The goal of our breeding program is to carefully breed for strong herding and work ethic, excellent conformation, movement, temperament and health. We hope to provide the necessary diversity to the breed while maintaining the classic traits of the Dell'Albera bloodlines which are becoming rarer and rarer. While we understand the need to diversify, we do so judiciously and slowly to ensure that what we have is not lost and what is gained is purposeful.
The Dell'Albera lines are most present in the U.S.A and are limited to the original pedigrees which were originally imported from Italy by Donna DeFalcis. It is important to maintain these lines and carry them on as best as we can. They are too precious to lose. We are dedicated to keeping Dell'Albera lines in our breeding program and holding on to the classic traits of this line. We introduced some of the other original Italian lines into our program when we imported Amira from Germany. Amira has been a huge asset to our breedings and we feel so lucky to have a beautiful representation of the Dell'Albera, Lupercali and Valle Scrivia lines in our home.
We are committed to doing our best to maintain healthy Bergamascos for decades to come. Luckily this breed is not plagued with many genetic illnesses, but as they grow in numbers, it will be important to remain diligent on preventing this from happening. We screen our Bergamascos for hip dysplasia using the PennHip method and are careful to look at the entire picture when breeding from such a small gene pool. Our goal is to breed healthy hips while maintaining conformation and movement to standard. We have been lucky to have some really excellent hip reports among our breeding dogs.
Conformation and Movement
We breed our dogs to the AKC standard. We strive to breed Bergamascos who are excellent examples. It is a mix of art and science when selecting prospective breeding dogs and puppies. We pay careful attention to the traits of our dogs and are always trying to improve for excellence while also considering movement. A dog with correct confirmation will have correct movement and in a herding breed, this is an important aspect for performing it's job effectively. When selecting puppies for breeding, show or work homes, these factors are all considered as a whole.
The Bergamasco temperament is unique. They are highly affectionate, loyal, quirky, intelligent, protective, comical and stubborn. We try to breed temperaments that are independent enough for working while still encompassing all their beautiful traits and personalities. Bergamascos can be protective and don't always get along with other dogs. They are people oriented and would prefer to be with family over anything else.
Our dogs have mostly lived on farms with the exception of a few years in a residential neighborhood. They are happiest and healthiest when free and with purpose. We assess our puppies early on for herding instinct. Our dogs have strong herding instinct and drive and we are careful to do our best to produce puppies that can be an asset to a farm or homestead. Bergamascos are tending dogs and have specific ways that they work. We nurture these abilities by providing them with professional training and testing and then implementing some of these skills on our own farm. We are very happy with the abilities of our dogs and continue to train for AKC herding trails in the near future. We appreciate the work of Lynette Melville of Nutmeg Farm for all the work she has done with our dogs and for her expertise.