Originally Posted by Longblades
And to add to Choochi, in my breed, Labrador Retrievers, in some European countries a dog cannot achieve a top title in conformation without a title in a hunting venue as well. Don't ask me for details, it's just something from a European on another board. That's not the case here in N. America but I do see more conformation type Labs competing in field events.
Somewhat ironically, back to the spaniel needing protection in cold water (that was what started all this wasn't it?) a lot of field Labs have a thin, single coat, are leaner and rangier and truly cannot withstand the cold, particularly the cold water, as well as their heavier double coated, bulkier show bred companions. My trainer put vests on his field bred dogs for hunting in cold water in November. In Labs I see just as much corruption of the breed in the field breeding as in the show breeding. Because, as my field trainer put it to me, field trials themselves are not what you'd want the dog to do in actual hunting.
lol and I will add to your two points as well!
Working titles are also required for the GSD and Dobermans in Europe. There is some controversy with that as there are politics involved (as with any thing) titles being bought, judges bribed, but the idea is there a working breed must not only look the part but act the part as well.
Point two, sport often imitates work but often with limitations. Take the GSD once again and Schutzhund, a protection sport developed in order to test the working ability of the GSDs (now also used for other breeds). The rules of the sport have changed a lot, many purists argue to make it easier to grow the sport and let dogs earn passing scores, which by default waters down the usability of this sport as a breeding test. There are breeders that breed for sport and a protection sport dog may not necessarily (in fact often) translate well to a working environment. So with some working breeds you now see an even further split of pet vs show vs working sport vs work. Mind you the sport and work dogs have far more in common and some times a good sport dog can make a good real life work dog and vice versa, but the split exists none the less.