Open main menu

Page:Swine; a book for students and farmers.djvu/14

This page needs to be proofread.

the blood, or how perfect the type from breeder's standpoint, if the hog does not meet all the requirements of the packer, if it is not suited to paying the rent and lifting the mortage when placed in the hands of the average farmer, of what avail have been all the efforts that have been put forth in producing this type of animal? In short, the watchword of the truly successful breeder must be utility. Utility is the touchstone upon which each breeder's work will be tested. If his work stands the test, it will surely meet with recognition; if it fails in the test, it will ultimately disappear and be forgotten l. In setting up an ideal, therefore, utility is the great requisite. In establishing a type, nothing must be admitted that will detract from utility. In breeding stock, it must always be the main consideration. When he studies pedigrees, the border must ask himself how much the blood lines represented in the pedigree under the consideration are likely to enhance the utility of the stock he is breeding. Every step in the breeder's operations must be dominated by this one great consideration, and if he ever loses sight of the importance of utility, he need never hope ro achieve distinction in his calling.

Butcher and Feeder Utility must be viewed from two stanpoints. The butcher requires an animal that will give him the large proportion of valuable meat, and the farmer requires an animal that will reproduce its kind in profitable numbers, and make rapid and economical gains. There would be little use in aiming to please the author if the animal did not meet the requirements of the farmer; neither must be the butcher be left out of consideration if a really useful animal is to be produced. In breeding operations, therefore, both these men must be kept in view, and the breeding, and killing qualities must each receive a due share of attention. The point may be illustrated by a reference to the breeding of a swine for bacon production. One important feature of a bacon hog is the length of side, but it is only one thing out of a number of requirements. Some men,