The word "pedigree" appeared in the English language in 1410 as "pee de Grewe", "pedegrewe" or "pedegru", each of those words being borrowed to the Middle French "pié de grue", meaning "crane foot". This comes from a visual analogy between the trace of the bird's foot and the three lines used in the English official registers to show the ramifications of a genealogical tree.
It came in the French language in 1828 to name the genealogical tree of an animal. It was sometimes found written in a French way in the past, with an accent on the "e": pedigrée.
In France, during a long time, the pedigrees were written by the breeder himself, by hand. The
Société Centrale Canine was putting a stamp on it,
certifying that the information written were the same as the ones found in the breed studbook.
Below I put a few models of those hand-written pedigrees, all of them being the ones of braques du Bourbonnais. They are not standardized because there were several templates available in the shops, all being usable, unlike today.
This is the oldest known Bourbonnais pedigree, its big size and circular shape allows it to show 6 generations.
Grim was owned by Miss Tostain, who was to be latter assistant general secretary of the C.B.B.
Interesting detail: some dogs (like "Dick de la Dune" or "Fly") are noted as "sans origines connues" ("without known origins"), and yet their parents have been added, probably by the breeder after having received the certified pedigree; it is the same thing that I do in my genealogy, when I give the parents of dogs registered as "Titre Initial", it isn't written on any pedigree, but as I have this information, I give it.
As Uta's parent were not registered in the LOF, she was not registered in the LOF herself, but in the first generation of the Registre Initial (which gives the right to enter the LOF after 3 generations).
There are several interesting points in this pedigree:
-The "orange" color of the bitch, which is probably close to the "fawn" shows that this color exists since a long time in the breed.
-The mention "origines anglaises" ("English origins") shows that out crossing with pointers is not new in the breed (Flaye, the out crossed bitch is present 3 times in the pedigree, and on the 2 sides).
Here we have the pedigree of a LOF dog born the next year. A few points seem of interest:
-Here also an outcross is mentioned on the 2 sides of the pedigree; the out crossed bitch, registered in the R.I., Vanne de la Bresle, have been bred by monsieur Dubut. He tells about this pointer outcross experiment in an article shown in the "genetics" part of this site.
-The first page includes the name of the pedigree template inventor, doctor Castaing.
-The second page includes the proposal of a very ingenious system for naming the dogs, from the same doctor Castaing, which was less successful than the pedigree template.
Junon de la Turne was registered in the Registre Initial, but this time the
Société Centrale Canine found it useful to point to the owner that this certificate was not a pedigree,
because the bitch is only at the second generation of the Registre Initial. Here is the letter from the S.C.C.:
This R.I. registration certificate is interesting for another reason: it has the nose print of the bitch, a method used at this time to identify dogs, in the same way as humans put their fingerprint on their ID. This method abandoned since then:
This pedigree has been partially filled out by the breeder for a litter which was eventually never done, because Junon was sterile.
It is historical because it is probably the last attempt to have a litter before the disappearance of the breed.
In the 70's, the Société Centrale Canine modernized itself with the adoption of typing machines and of a unique pedigree template, which enabled it to fill the genealogical data itself.
At the same time, the confirmation exam was instituted,
which was to be mandatory to have a full pedigree et have an LOF offspring.
Given the importance of this dog in the breed, for which it is the patriarch, one could miss to show its pedigree.
It was registered as "Titre Initial" because its parents were not registered in the LOF. This procedure should not be mixed up with the "Registre Initial", the Titre Initial registration is a normal LOF one, without having to wait for three generations. The only particularity is that the parents are not shown, because unknown.
This is the pedigree of a dog produced by two dogs registered as "Titre Initial", so it is not barred anymore with the mention "INSCRIPTION A TITRE INITIAL", and has genealogical information.
One particularity of this time: the temporary pedigree (before confirmation exam) has been changed to a full pedigree by punching little holes in it forming the word "CONFIRME" (on top). Latter, the system will be changed, there will be two different papers for the temporary and full pedigree (see Opaline exemple below).
This birth certificate (or temporary pedigree) illustrates this French particularity of confirmation exam: the S.C.C. first sends to the owner this paper, which is not a pedigree.
When a confirmation expert judges the dog conform to the standard, he fills the part of this document relative to confirmation. The document is then sent to the S.C.C., which in return sends the full pedigree.
At this time, Opaline's LOF number was 101, had she been confirmed, she would have got a second number (as Lara which had the number 73 before confirmation and 73/6 after).
It is because this bitch has never been confirmed that we still have this paper.
The confirmation is mandatory for a dog/bitch to produce puppies registered to the LOF.
Here is a full pedigree because this bitch has been confirmed.
On the same model than the previous one (Telma), but this dog was not confirmed, which enables us to see that at this time the birth certificate was green (while the pedigree was orange).
Here is the new model of pedigree adopted in the 80's. it is a full pedigree because this dog has been confirmed.