1st Analysis of Phenotype and Temperament in Uruguay - English
Another great CAFIB success!!!
Growing international passion for breeding improvement of the authentic Fila Brasileiro has been leading to the continued expansion of CAFIB frontiers and now the new territory in which we have just planted our flag was neighboring Uruguay.
The official name of this country is Republica Del Uruguay because it is located east of the Uruguay River, word of Guarani origin, whose etymology has several versions (Rio dos Lagartos, Rio dos Caranguejos, Rio dos Caracois), but whose official meaning, taught in local schools, is "River of Pássaros Pintados" in a reference to the multiple shadows caused on the water by the huge flocks of various birds that live and nest near its banks. On the other hand, the capital, Montevideo (in Spanish, Montevideo), owes its name to the hill on which it is located, although there are also two different etymological explanations for the origin of the word. The first, included in Fernão de Magalhães’s logbook (in Spanish, Fernando de Magallanes), dated 1520, is the reference to a hill or mountain, with the shape similar to a hat, which can be seen to the right of those who navigate the River de la Plata from east to west, and which received the name of (in free translation) “Monte vi eu”, meaning, “I saw the mountain.” There, in 1726, a fort was built (long time gone), cradle of the future capital. The other version, although lacking historical support, is the most widespread and also refers to this same sixth hill seen by sailors traveling towards the west, recorded in Roman numerals as "Monte VI de Este a Oeste” or, in short, “Monte Vi-d-E-O.”
It is worth noting some more information and curiosities about Uruguay, where in some summer places such as Punta del Este, the square meter is sold at outrageous prices and affluent mansions - usually occupying an entire block -, instead of numbers, they receive names. In this paradisiacal resort, several properties belong to Brazilian politicians and television artists, professional categories, who, as it is known, are among the highest paid in our Brazilian land. Uruguay is the second smallest country in South America (only larger than Suriname) and ranked as the least corrupt nation in Latin America (followed by Chile, second). Montevideo is considered one of the safest cities in the world and is also the first Latin American country in quality of life. Uruguayans highly value human and civil rights, freedom and democracy, accountability and sustainability. Back in 1907, the country was a pioneer in the legalization of divorce and in 1927 became the first Latin American nation to grant women the right to vote (the first to exercise this prerogative was a 90-year-old Brazilian woman, who had lived in Cerro Chato for many years). In 2007, it was the first country in South America to legalize civil unions between homosexuals and bisexuals and to allow homoparental adoption (banned by most countries). Six years later, it became the second continent to officiate marriage between people of the same sex and the first in the world to establish legal rules for the cultivation, the commercialization and consumption of marijuana (Cannabis sativa). Moreover, in portuguese, "maconha" (marijuana) is anagram for "cânhamo" (hemp), another name of the same plant, but used when it is intended for numerous purposes permitted by law, such as in cosmetics, textiles, wax, paper, fuel, etc.
With regard to animals, Uruguay boasts the curious index of about three cows per capita, because its population is 3.5 million people for a cattle herd of more than 10 million bovines. And this country rigorously applies a legislation that punishes with a fine those who mistreat animals. There are no official figures of dogs per capita, but it is known that the number is very high and the impression is that most of the country's population keeps "pets" in their homes.
It is not, therefore, surprising the interest of Uruguayans by the Fila Brasileiro and its pioneering in inviting CAFIB to promote an Analysis of Phenotype and Temperament in Canelones, close to Montevideo, on November 19, 2016.
The organizer of the exhibit was Uruguayan Daniel Balsas, who had already visited Brazil several times, having even brought several of his dogs to our Analyses and Exhibitions. He developed a breeding program which somewhat resembles the integration system used in Brazilian poultry and pig farming. In addition to the Filas that he keeps in his own residence, he distributes matrice* and the puppies of his Kennel Piedras of Afilar to acquaintances and closely monitors the development and reproduction of these specimens in the different houses where they are kept.
This affix, Piedras de Afilar - which, in Portuguese, means sharpening rocks - is the name of a small town, in the department of Canelones, that still keeps bucolic railroad station and is known for preserving the rich rural traditions of the “Platine” folklore, such as the bunches of horses (or races on straight tracks, in the “Gaúcho” idiom of Rio Grande do Sul, Argentina and Uruguay) and preparation of the traditional, and today very rare, “asado en el cuero” (or barbecued in hide, where the steer, just-abated and eviscerated, is baked whole – in open air, on soil fire - using, as mean of baking, its own hide, which holds back and boils all the fluids, such as water, blood and fat, leaving the meat quite soft and with a characteristic flavor -, a technique that is supposed to have been created by the Pampas Indians who used to abate by shots the deviated cattle and, when they needed to flee suddenly from the estancieiro to look for their deviated cattle, they could quickly roll the leftovers of the unfinished meal in the hide and take the leftovers by quick gallop). It was there, in Piedras de Afilar that, many years ago, the then young Daniel Balsas began, in a small farm, his breeding of Filas, at the time still without many technical criteria and with a somewhat heterogeneous stock, including some black-colored dogs. Over time, he visited several kennels, including in Brazil, acquiring knowledge and learning to separate the wheat from the chaff, a process that now culminates in the realization of this 1st Analysis of Phenotype and Temperament of CAFIB in Uruguay.
His partner in the organizing of the event was Brazilian Carlos Eduardo "Pipico" Gonçalves, from Rio Grande do Sul, who, a few years ago, made a hard turn toward his former Kennel Borghetto and began to follow CAFIB’s genetic improvement guidelines. Argentine Ramiro Irigoyen and Lucas Quintero were also part of this partnership in the Analysis, who provided valuable assistance acting as an experiment in temperament and nervous system tests. Among the breeders and exhibitors from Argentina, we should also highlight the attendance of Zenon Gustavo Cousillas and Mariano Arbiza. And to complete the list of contributors, we must thank Edy Peñalver, responsible for the stereo system, in addition to Diego Aguirre, Pablo Mendes, Pablo Orlando, Alvaro Guerrero, Felipe Vals and Matías Balsas, who provided umbrellas, tents , tables, chairs, drinks and food.
The site - La Chacra Lacrosse - in Canelones, a few kilometers from Montevideo, was kindly provided by the owner, Raul Jude Gurmendes, passionate about the breed, who, in the 1980s, got his first Filas in the north of Minas Gerais . They say that he, then newly married, knowing that we, from CAFIB, led by Paulo Santos Cruz, were conducting an Analysis of Phenotype and Temperament in Governador Valadares, promptly interrupted his honeymoon in Rio de Janeiro and began to undertake a marathon in which he took three planes to go to Vale do Rio Doce and drink, directly from the source, the teachings of the "Father of the Fila Breed". In the euphoria of that moment, he ended up not providing many explanations to the bride, who, in tears on their marriage bed, felt abandoned, without knowing where her husband was exactly. And now, during this our event of ours in Uruguay, he showed us, with pride, the relics from that trip, kept lovingly. Those were the two drafts of family tree, trace in Paulo Santos Cruz’s own handwriting, specifying the ancestors of two puppies – Volga of Ibituruna and Toro of Ibituruna, nicknamed “Pluto” – whom he ended up acquiring there and whose Origin Registers had not been issued yet. La Chacra Lacrosse, flanked by centenarian trees, where Raúl Jude lives in the beautiful house built by his grandfather in 1930, and where he continues growing his Filas, relies on ample facilities for events and two polo fields.
For this First Analysis of Phenotype and Temperament of CAFIB in Uruguay, 49 specimens attended, being two puppies under six months of age. In general, the Filas from this country are very typical and homogeneous. They are usually kept unleashed in spacious areas and normally are not very encouraged to manifest aggressive reactions; so, when attacked by the experiment, while not showing fear, they look somewhat startled at the owner, as if they were asking what's going on and how they should proceed. The owners circulated quietly with their dogs around the office, and all over the lawn, apparently not worrying too much about the possibility of fights between them or attacks on people present. But, actually, the natural instinct of the breed continues to exist, even in stasis, latent status, and Daniel Balsas himself nearly escaped being bitten, showing surprising agility to dodge the violent attack of a Fila on whose side he had inadvertently passed.
With nearly half a hundred dogs on the track, the analyses were conducted by two Brazilian guest judges, Luciano de Almeida Gavião (Kennel Serra Dourada) and Américo Cardoso dos Santos Jr. (Kennel Araguaya), who had the good fortune to count on the important aid of two other CAFIB judges who, on their own initiative, attended the event: Jonas Tadeu Iacovantuono and Giovani Éder de Carvalho, both from Guaratinguetá (SP). If it weren’t for this providential presence, the analyses would have extended through the night. It was also essential the support we had in the office and in the photographs, provided by Cleide Cocito Cardoso dos Santos (Vargem Grande Paulista, SP), Denise Gavião (Descalvado, São Paulo) and the couple Cíntia and Gerson Junqueira de Barros (Itanhandu, MG), who, similarly, also took the initiative to attend and collaborate with the work.
The high quality of the structure and typicality of the Uruguayan stock were evidenced by the high rate of approvals (verging on 90%) already in this first Analysis, because only five Filas failed, all by disqualifying reaction in temperament and nervous system tests. And, although this first CAFIB screening in Uruguay has been limited to a technical evaluation of phenotype and temperament, yet, as a stimulus to the breeders, we decided to choose and reward, with plates taken from Brazil, the Best Male and the Best Female of the Analysis: Sultão of Piedras Afilar (Daniel Balsas’s s breeding and owned by Frederico Rodrigues) and Zezé Piedras de Afilar (breeding and property of Daniel Balsas).
And, in closing, we can’t thank enough the festive barbecue reception that Daniel Balsas provided at his home, to the members of CAFIB, together with the exhibitors and everyone else involved in the event, with plenty of great food and drink - as the local gauchos say: “to grease the mustache” - and crowned by a delicious cake that we were sorry to cut, because it was very artistically decorated with CAFIB logo.
Child and Fila, great friends