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What Do You Think?

Ask the Judge - July/August/September 2008

Even though the standard of perfection awards 25 points to type and 50 points to markings, when it comes down to your decision, would a poorly typed, but exceptionally well-marked Dutch beat an exceptionally-typed rabbit with a few marking flaws? And on the subject of markings, if two animals are equal in type, would a rabbit with a couple of minor marking flaws or one major flaw do better on the table?

From Kevin Hooper:
When it comes to comparing type and markings on a Dutch, you must keep in mind one thing, the most points on a Dutch go to body type.  Now, collectively adding all of the markings together, then they do add to more points than type.
With that being said, I believe you judge type first, then find the ones with the markings on those with the best type. Based on this, the answer to this months question would be the poorly typed, well marked Dutch would not win over a nicely typed Dutch with a few marking flaws.
When considering a Dutch with one major flaw versus one with a couple of minors ones, most likely the one with the minor faults would win, but that depends on the severity and location of the major flaw on the other one?
Remember also, type is not just body shape, it is head (round and set close to the shoulders), ears (thick and well furred, carried erect and together), eyes (bold), good medium bone, and a thick hide.  These features make up the type of the Dutch, and in my opinion, make the Dutch, when all are present.  Without these other parts of type, you just have colored Florida White with markings.
From Ray Brewer:
Boy, that's an easy one! Before I give you my opinion, let me say this, most of our exhibitors are also breeders and it's part of a judge's job to teach and help them improve their herd. To reward a "poorly typed" Dutch is to re-enforce a poor culling practice. For me, the premise of the question is all wrong. A "poorly typed" Dutch would never make it all the way up to second unless it was a very small class class.  On the flip side, I remember a superbly typed black junior doe at the 2003 NDS that only had fair markings. Even though she was the one I would have wanted to take home to breed, I could only get her up to the top ten. She did place higher than 30 or 40 with better markings. Last thought on this subject, poor type is one the things I use in making my first cut in a large class.
Assuming that color, fur and condition are also equal, I would probably go with the one with two minor flaws over the one with one major fault. Here's what I consider major marking faults. 1. Any ragged marking or long runs or color drags, 2. High cheek(s), 3. Long stops. These faults are very hard to "breed out" and the animal should be culled. It would have to have several outstanding qualities to stay around. Minor faults: Small run or drag, low (but somewhat rounded) cheeks, and slight bias to any marking.

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