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Bar B
Is wry mouth a birth defect or a genetic condition? I get confused cause they say all things can be linked genetically. What causes this?
Cindy/Copper Hill
It is an inherited condition Barb. In my own experience, you can often see it as early as 5 weeks while in other lines their mouth may not go south until closer to 6 months.
Bar B
I have heard that this condition can skip a generation. I once met a show/breeder person that ended up altering a champion because of this trait and was the one that had advised me of this. Is there any truth to this? Also if it doesn`t drop while a young puppy at several weeks of age, what makes it drop at an older age. Is it a weakness specifically in the jaw area or a bone type condition that can end up anywhere but settling in the jaw most of the time? I hope this is not a stupid question!
Burning River Boxers
QUOTE(Bar B @ Jan 4 2004, 11:55 AM)
Also if it doesn`t drop while a young puppy at several weeks of age, what makes it drop at an older age. Is it a weakness specifically in the jaw area or a bone type condition that can end up anywhere but settling in the jaw most of the time? I hope this is not a stupid question!

Not stupid at all!! For me, wry mouth is a hard one to wrap my head around until it was explained to me like this, (and this is how I understand it) and I'm still learning:

Wry mouth really has little to do with the actual "mouth" (or tooth placement). It is actually a malformation of the entire jaw, and sometimes even the skull. Wry mouth can be anything from a twisting of the lower mandible (you will notice that the canine tooth will twist downward almost always on the dog's right side) to the actual joint of where the mandible connects to the skull being slightly off. This is why wry mouth can be such a hard thing to correct/breed out. First, it can be hard to tell exactly why or where the problem is happening (i.e. - what part of the head needs "correcting"??) Second, since it is more of a malformation, it can happen to a slight degree. Because a bitch (for example) can be ever so slightly wry, you may not notice it, and when bred to a dog that has wry mouth behind him, her pups will inherit the horrible mouths.

Keep in mind how much puppies heads change even through the age of 2 years old. Puppies generally go from looking like parrots, to the conehead stage, to looking somewhat like miniature boxers (at the age of 8 weeks, still retaining the conehead), to the dane faced stage (muzzles slope downwards), to the age that the muzzle starts to break over and the nose turns up. Even throughout the second year, heads will change and get wider, flews will drop, and eyes will tighten back up. Given how much they change throughout the first two years, it is quite possible for wry mouth to not show up well into the 6 month, and I would be surprised if it doesn't get worse from then until the head stops changing completely.

Having said this, I have also heard that wry mouth is a fairly common condition in not just boxers, but dogs in general. There are a few very good links out there concerning wry mouth. Doing a search on google should pull a few up. smile.gif
mollysmommy
blink.gif okay..what is wry mouth? and is it something that the vet would tell you about if your dog had it. Mine only has a slight overbight..but she out grew it now...and is it something you'd notice right away? Just curious for future references.
Bar B
Don`t quote me on this but this is how I have seen wry mouth.

It is when the bottom jaw appears to be deformed. The tongue usually sticks out most if not all of the time and usually a tooth or two protruding. I have also seen that on some dogs it is almost as if they are (what I would call) hair-lipped. The whole jaw usually looks crooked.
Shirley
My Mac had a nice mouth as a puppy but as he grew his jaw got worse and worse (so long ago now that I can't remember when it started or stopped). I lost contact with 2 of his brothers after a year or so but they were still in the show ring up to that stage and their mouths were fine.
Cindy/Copper Hill
Here is a link showing what a correct Boxer bite should look like:

Illustrated Standard

A mouth can be wry a little or alot. In the most severe cases, teeth may show on *one side* in the front or the tongue may hang out. (I wanted to clarify the *one side* because a Boxer may be too undershot without being wry, and still show teeth. This is a different fault from being wry) One side of the jaw can be twisted slightly & as a result, show only a minor fault (in appearance) or can be twisted so dramtically as to make it difficult for the dog to even eat properly.

In looking at the pics in the Illustrated Standard, note the side shot. You can clearly see the correct tooth placement: canine/incisor/canine. Look at your own dog's bite. Is it correct, on both sides? If there are more teeth between the canines or an uneven distribution of space between them - on one side, the dog is wry.

Look at the shot of the lower jaw from the front. Note how straight it appears, like so: ___. In a wry mouth, one side will be cocked higher than the other.

Breeding out a wry mouth....not impossible, but by no means easy. It does not "skip" generations but can be carried as a hidden fault for one or more generations, and when bred to an affected or carrier dog it can reappear. But the same can be said for most every structural fault in dogs.

I would not "throw out" a dog with a bad mouth *if* it had good to superior traits overall. It is one of those things that you have to take into serious consideration, while not ignoring the whole package.
Bar B
I too found a link which somewhat shows of more detail, though I see there is a bit of controversy said as to breed or not. NOTE that this is an opinion from this person (to my understanding) and I would have to further study as if one was to be bred or not (my opinion). And also a coinsedence that this breeder also said that it had skipped a generation.

[img]http://americanboxerclub.org/articles/wry_mouths.htm[/img]
Burning River Boxers
QUOTE(Bar B @ Jan 4 2004, 06:47 PM)
And also a coinsedence that this breeder also said that it had skipped a generation.

http://americanboxerclub.org/articles/wry_mouths.htm

I don't think it necessarly skips a generation. I think the difference here is that she (the breeder in the above posted link) intentionally bred away from the fault by breeding the wry bitch to a dog that was not wry, and that most likely didn't have wry mouths behind him. Had she taken that same bitch to a dog that had wry mouths behind him, she would have certainly seen wry pups in that first litter. For all we know, she may have just taken the son (the dog with the wry mother) to a bitch that had wry mouths behind her. This is why it is important to look at the whole pedigree and see what is behind a dog before making a concrete breeding decision. wink.gif
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