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For the last several years, the most popular breed of dog in

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For the last several years, the most popular breed of dog in  [#permalink]

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New post Updated on: 22 Feb 2012, 04:23
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For the last several years, the most popular breed of dog in the United States has been the Labrador Retriever. An official at a national association of dog breeders concluded that the breed is the most popular only because of the Labrador Retriever's friendly disposition and the ease with which the dogs can be trained.

Which of the following, if true, would cast the most serious doubt on the accuracy of the official's conclusion?

A. The Labrador Retriever is closely related to the Golden Retriever, another popular breed in the United States.
B. Labrador Retrievers have been trained in a number of useful ways, such as to serve as guide dogs or as hunting companions.
C. Some people do not like Labrador Retrievers because they can be quite large as adults and often chew furniture when they are puppies.
D. The Australian Shepard is another friendly and easy to train dog breed, yet it does not have nearly the popularity of the Labrador Retriever.
E. No recent popular television shows have featured a Labrador Retriever.

Originally posted by subhajeet on 21 Feb 2012, 22:54.
Last edited by subhajeet on 22 Feb 2012, 04:23, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: The most popular breed of dog in the United States  [#permalink]

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New post 22 Feb 2012, 01:39
I think the answer should be D.

Conclusion: "the breed is the most popular only because of the Labrador Retriever's friendly disposition and the ease with which the dogs can be trained."

Option D. The Australian Shepard is another friendly and easy to train dog breed, yet it does not have nearly the popularity of the Labrador Retriever.

If this is true then we are sure that if other dogs with the same characteristics as mentioned are not popular, there must be some other reason why Labrador Retrievers are so popular and hence the conclusion is weakened.

What's the original answer?
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Re: The most popular breed of dog in the United States  [#permalink]

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New post 22 Feb 2012, 02:49
What is the OA?

What can weaken "that the breed is the most popular only because of the Labrador Retriever's friendly disposition and the ease with which the dogs can be trained"

--> We need to find something, which does not make the Labrador most popular only be it is friendly and easy to train

A. The Labrador Retriever is closely related to the Golden Retriever, another popular breed in the United States. --> Does not weak the argument, not related
B. Labrador Retrievers have been trained in a number of useful ways, such as to serve as guide dogs or as hunting companions. Does not weak the argument, interesting but not related
C. Some people do not like Labrador Retrievers because they can be quite large as adults and often chew furniture when they are puppies.Does not weak the argument, not related
D. The Australian Shepard is another friendly and easy to train dog breed, yet it does not have nearly the popularity of the Labrador Retriever.if the argument would be true, the australian Shepard must be as popular as the Labrador Retriever as both dogs are friendly and easy to train; that would definitely weaken the argument
E. No recent popular television shows have featured a Labrador Retriever. Does not weak the argument, out of scope
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Re: The most popular breed of dog in the United States  [#permalink]

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New post 22 Feb 2012, 04:38
I have updated the OA. you guys have got it right. It's D :)
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Re: The most popular breed of dog in the United States  [#permalink]

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New post 22 Feb 2012, 13:36
I picked B because I didn't read D. How stupid of me?
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Re: For the last several years, the most popular breed of dog in  [#permalink]

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New post 23 Nov 2013, 13:16
here is the official explanation from Kaplan.

Answer D - In the stimulus, the dog breeder official concludes that Labs are the most popular dog only because they are friendly and easily trained. In other words, the friendliness and ease of training of the Labs causes their popularity. In any weaken question with a causal argument, your task is to show that the causality is not properly draw – in this case that the friendliness and training ease are not alone causing the Lab to be the most popular dog breed. Choice (D) gives us reason to believe that this is true. If the Australian Shepard has the same characteristics as the Labrador Retriever, but does not have the same outcome (i.e., the high popularity), then there must be other factors involved (e.g., availability, reputation, etc.) that cause the Lab to be the most popular breed.

None of the other answer choices work to sever the causality as it is stated in the stimulus. Choice (A), (C), and (E) are out of scope – we do not care that the Lab is related to the Golden Retriever, nor that some people do not like the Lab, nor that the Lab has not shown up much on TV recently.

Choice (B) may actually strengthen the argument by confirming one of the useful and popular characteristics of the Lab – namely the ease with which the breed is trained. Since this is a weaken question, Choice (B) is incorrect.


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Re: For the last several years, the most popular breed of dog in  [#permalink]

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New post 11 Oct 2014, 08:21
Does anybody here think answer D is not rightly framed? I know that we need to get the best ( and not the ideal) answer in the GMAT. I have the doubt because option D can be interpreted as:

"Since the Shepard does not have as much friendly disposition or cannot be trained with as much ease as a Lab , the Shepard is not as popular as the Lab. IT IS POPULAR because of the 2 factors but not as much as a Lab .So, this doesn't weaken the fact that the 2 factors make a dog popular.

I voted for B because B says that if a dog is trained as a hunting companion or guide dog then it becomes popular( and not because of the dog' friendly disposition and ease with which it can be trained)

Been breaking my head over this for long. :( . Need experts help !!!
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Re: For the last several years, the most popular breed of dog in  [#permalink]

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New post 12 Oct 2014, 08:28
I too think that B weakens the conclusion because it provides an alternate reason as to why the breed is popular.
If the breed is popular because of other reason apart from being friends and easily trained then that should weaken the conclusion.
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Re: For the last several years, the most popular breed of dog in  [#permalink]

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New post 29 Aug 2018, 10:14
The phrase "cast the most serious doubt" identifies this as a Weaken question.

In the stimulus, the official concludes that Labs are the most popular dog only because they are friendly and easily trained. In other words, the friendliness and ease of training of the Labs causes their popularity.

Weaken a causal argument by finding information that says the causation may be reversed, that there may be another cause, or that there may be only correlation between the two factors, not causation. In this case, the most likely candidates are the last two. Look for a choice that contains information there may be a factor other than friendliness and ease of training that is contributing to the popularity of Labs (perhaps they're the latest choice for celebrities' pets) or information that indicates there's only a correlation between the two factors. Reversed causation doesn't make sense, as the popularity of Labs can't be making the dogs more friendly and easier to train.

(D) matches the prediction and is correct. If the Australian Shepherd has the same characteristics as the Labrador Retriever, but does not have the same popularity, then there must be some other reason--cost, availability, reputation, etc.--that causes the Lab to be the most popular breed.

(B) and (E) strengthen the argument. (B) provides support that Labs are easy to train, and (E) discounts another possible reason Labs may be popular.

(A) is irrelevant. The Lab's association with any other breed is not mentioned in the argument. You may think that Golden Retrievers are also friendly and easy to train, and that the choice therefore weakens the argument, but the choice does not mention any characteristics of Golden Retrievers.

(C) is irrelevant. The fact that some people disagree with the argument does not weaken it. The argument is only concerned with the reason the Labs are so popular.
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Re: For the last several years, the most popular breed of dog in  [#permalink]

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New post 29 Aug 2018, 11:30
avohden wrote:
here is the official explanation from Kaplan.

Answer D - In the stimulus, the dog breeder official concludes that Labs are the most popular dog only because they are friendly and easily trained. In other words, the friendliness and ease of training of the Labs causes their popularity. In any weaken question with a causal argument, your task is to show that the causality is not properly draw – in this case that the friendliness and training ease are not alone causing the Lab to be the most popular dog breed. Choice (D) gives us reason to believe that this is true. If the Australian Shepard has the same characteristics as the Labrador Retriever, but does not have the same outcome (i.e., the high popularity), then there must be other factors involved (e.g., availability, reputation, etc.) that cause the Lab to be the most popular breed.

None of the other answer choices work to sever the causality as it is stated in the stimulus. Choice (A), (C), and (E) are out of scope – we do not care that the Lab is related to the Golden Retriever, nor that some people do not like the Lab, nor that the Lab has not shown up much on TV recently.

Choice (B) may actually strengthen the argument by confirming one of the useful and popular characteristics of the Lab – namely the ease with which the breed is trained. Since this is a weaken question, Choice (B) is incorrect.


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Hi,

Please correct me if i am wrong.
i understand i need to find an alternate reason or dismiss the causality here. As you correctly mentioned (..then there must be other factors involved (e.g., availability, reputation, etc.) that cause the Lab to be the most popular breed.) ,so being easily trained and affable doesnt make them the most popular breed , rather they are a sub type of breed which enjoys popularity, and may be people like to buy them as they are related to another popular breed. which is stated in A.
of course D provides another new info about completely another breed that shows causality do not happen, it does not mean that it might not happen for a sub species of LABs family.
i find A more intriguing than D.
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Re: For the last several years, the most popular breed of dog in &nbs [#permalink] 29 Aug 2018, 11:30
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