My wife Ada and I commenced our Afghan Hound involvement in 1970. Serendipitous good fortune in both showing and breeding followed. The lines we started with are still the back bone of our current breeding strategies. By the 80's, our daughters caused a slowing of canine activities with pony club and such intervening. By the late 80's, we were again in a position to recommence our interests and introduced new bloodlines to blend and compliment our well infused linebred breeding program.

In 1996, whilst judging in New Zealand, a 9 year old veteran dog whose Zest and Enthusiasm for life brought back memories of the dogs from the seventies. His movement and attitude was a joy to behold. Semen was collected and in 2000 a solitaire pup was born and a new chapter commenced. It was at this time I undertook the challenge to give explanation to Afghan Hound Gait with all its variables.

The first step was to set up a pedigree program with the Afghan Hound Club of Victoria in conjunction with programmer Mr. Alex Ip. Pedigree Plus was designed from a breeders perspective. It was launched at the 2000 Sidney Afghan Hound Congress. I devised a series of tests, to measure the bio-mechanics of trotting Afghans, this employed digital video. Digital video was at this time in its infancy. The first tests, being completed on 16mm film then converted to a digital format. These tests were carried out in 2001/2002.

The initial test dog was the solitaire bred dog (by Al from the NZ veteran dog) and his offspring. The dogs were trained and encouraged to trot at various velocities, around a 33m dia. Circle. Compliance was rewarded with juicy morsels. All training was carried out off lead so no physical influence could impede the natural free flow of the trotting action.. . These early slow motion videos clearly illustrate the unique mechanisms nature evolved to accommodate an efficient gait to suit Afghan's compact leggy angularity and its resulting smooth springy gait.

At this time, I began to build a video library of historical Specialities etc. as a datum for future comparisons, along with software which allowed generational video comparisons. Next challenge was to cobble together some sort of articulation to give explanation to the myriad of gait variations we see in the ring around the globe today, an interesting challenge and the basis of my congress presentation.

In conclusion, if we accept that everything is genetic, which includes movement, it is a numbers game; understanding Mendelian principles is advantageous, if not essential.