Sound Sighthounds & Lurchers

Welcome to the website of the Sound Sighthounds and Lurchers Foundation

Sound Sighthounds and Lurchers (SSS&L) is a foundation that is committed to healthier (sight)hounds in which genetic diversity plays a major role. Because everyone wants a healthy, happy dog as a mate!

Many breeds have run into problems due to inbreeding and kinship of the breed population. Inbreeding and kinship is the result of a closed studbook, no ‘fresh blood’ can be added in that case. In a closed studbook you are only allowed to breed with dogs that have a pedigree. A decrease in the diversity of a population leads to a greater chance of hereditary diseases. There is also a chance of creating inbreeding depression. Inbreeding depression can manifest itself, among other things, in greater susceptibility to diseases, shortened lifespan, problems with fertility, smaller litters and higher mortality in puppies. These problems can be tackled by working on more genetic diversity. If there is still sufficient variation of genes in a population, then it is important to retain it and, if necessary, to distribute it across that population. In that case population genetics is of great importance for a breed. When a population has become too closely related to one another due to too much inbreeding, it may well be that there is no longer enough diversity to be able to continue to breed responsibly within that closed studbook. When a studbook is closed then there is only one way to add new diversity to that population: crossing with dogs outside of the studbook. There are various terms for that, but as a foundation we will use the term outcross for the time being.

How did we choose the name Sound Sighthounds and Lurchers?
The term Lurcher comes from England and in a very broad sense it means a cross between a sighthound and a non-sighthound. When we cross breeds from the sighthound group with dogs / breeds from the other groups, the offspring are called Lurchers. We use that term in the broadest sense of the word and have no intention of breeding true poaching dogs. When we cross within the sighthound group, or breed within the breed, then they are sighthounds. And our goal is that they are all as Sound as possible, so as healthy as possible!

On the "Vision and Mission" page you can read how we want to achieve that!