Many things we know today about the old dogs of the Native American people has been collected by Kim La Flamme. Through the dogs of his grandfather, who was of Native American descent, his interest in these unique animals was awakened and hasn’t lessened since. His Native American ancestors entrusted him the task of carrying on this part of the American history into the future. Accepting the challenge, he made it his life’s task and can today, after over 50 years, look back at many successes, but also at some obstacles.
Kim La Flamme began his task with two dogs of his grandparents. After research and talks to elders, he managed to find possible American Indian Dogs respectively dogs with genetic material of the old dogs and began breeding. Over time his knowledge about the breeding philosophies of the original inhabitants grew and he realized that native breeders in ancient times had based their decisions regarding the selection specifically on appearance and physical and mental abilities.
Driven by the ambition to learn as much as possible about these dogs and to fulfill his task, he traveled from one Indian reservation to another, deepening his knowledge by talking to elders and through studies in museums and literature. Every now and then he was successful in finding dogs that descended from the old dogs of the native people. Based on his gathered knowledge regarding the appearance and the characteristics of the dogs from the native people, Kim La Flamme brought back into the present a dog that matches the original dog from the past.
Kim La Flamme used the knowledge he had gathered on the old Indian ways of breeding for his own breeding program. Through specific selection of his breeding dogs and by using the principles of breeding backwards, he managed to recover about five distinguished types of the old dogs (see history) and to implement them in his breeding program.
The goal of Kim La Flamme is to preserve the old dogs of the American Indians and to keep breeding them the way the Native Americans used to do many years ago. Physical and mental health combined with the abilities and the instincts of the original old dogs are up to now the priorities of the breeding program.
Finding new dogs that suit the breeding program has become in these times of modern breeding more and more difficult. The old dogs are gone and, as time goes by, there are fewer dogs on Indian reservations that still carry enough of the old genetic material. However, though less and less often, it happens that a new dog can be taken into the breeding program and therefore contributes to keep this unique breed alive.
More information on dogs, finding sites and breeding program can be found at Kim La Flamme’s website.
SDK Little Crow