Most news sources today are focusing on the recent announcement of compulsory microchipping to be implemented by 2016.
However, it is important to note that the same Defra consultation also focused on the Dangerous Dogs Act and that changes are due there as well.
“The Government also announced plans to extend the scope of the Dangerous Dogs Act to private places and to allow police to decide if dogs seized under the Act can stay with their owners until the outcome of the court case, removing the need for these dogs to be kennelled.” 1
What the consultation did not address was the aspect of breed specific legislation – it appears that this will continue in it’s current form for the time being, with no breeds added to or removed from the list.
Defra secretary Owen Paterson said that after considering advice from the police, the ban on four breeds – the Pit Bull Terrier, Japanese Tosa, Dogo Argentino and Fila Braziliero – will remain in place “to protect the public”. Paterson added: “The Government’s approach is one of tackling both deed and breed.”
Peter Jones, BVA President, said: “The Dangerous Dogs Act is woefully inadequate and needs a complete overhaul. However, in the absence of new legislation we do welcome these changes to extend the law to private property and to allow some dogs to stay with their owners during court proceedings.
“Extending the law to cover private places sends a strong message that dogs much be kept under control at all times and reinforces the message of responsible ownership.
“We hope that allowing dogs to stay with their owners during court proceedings will significantly reduce the number of innocent dogs unnecessarily kennelled by the police simply because of the way they look.”” Previously all such dogs had to be kennelled until after proceedings had concluded, even if they posed no risk to the public.
“Eight children and six adults have been killed in dog attacks since 2005″, reports the BBC, “with many of these incidents taking place in the home.
“In the past 12 months, more than 3,000 postal workers were attacked by out-of-control dogs, with 70% of these attacks happening on private property.
“Householders will however be protected from prosecution if their dog attacks a burglar or trespasser on their land.”
“Owen Paterson, Environment Secretary, added: “Most people take proper care of their dogs but there are a small minority of people who behave irresponsibly, allowing their dogs to threaten and attack people.
“People like health and postal workers, who have to go on private property just to do their jobs, deserve protection under the law. By giving the police extra powers to clamp down on law-breakers, those responsible for the worst offences will be held to account regardless of where the attack takes place.” 2
The changes follow a consultation which ran from 23 April 2012 to 15 June 2012. Over 27,000 people responded to the consultation.Tags: Articles, Current Affairs, DDA
Here we’ve compiled a selection of comments from Facebook and Twitter, both for and against, regarding the compulsory microchipping announcement made this morning:
AGAINST – Tina Humphrey, owner of Chandi: ”Enough with the ‘responsible dog owners already have their dogs chipped’! I am responsible but chose to NOT subject my dogs to medical procedures that carry health risks. Instead I supervise my dog 24 hours per day, have up to date info on a collar and tag. It is possible to be ‘responsible’ and not risk your dog’s health by implanting a foreign body!” 1 She also sent us the following link.
FOR - MRCVS (Royal College of Veterinary Surgeons): Good news about the compulsory microchipping of dogs. Don’t wait until 2016 though, visit your veterinary practice now – it’s their best way home. 2
NEUTRAL – K9 Safety: Would like to see online updating option when changing details on chip. Some only allow snail mail and cheque. 3
FOR – Guide Dogs UK: Compulsory microchipping promotes responsible dog ownership and gives the police an effective tool to identify a dog’s owner and hold them responsible for their dog’s behaviour. It will also make it harder for backstreet breeders to operate. 4
AGAINST – Dogs Today Magazine: If the microchip isn’t made proof of ownership, the governement shouldn’t bother with introducing compulsory microchipping. 5
FOR – Marc Abraham, TV vet: Great news but why do we have to wait so long? 6
NEUTRAL – Ben Fogle, TV presenter: Personally speaking when it comes to #dogmess #microchipping #responsibleowners I think we should require a dog licence. 7
FOR – Zara the Vet: Great news on the microchipping front, now we just need integration of all the databases and compulsory scanning! 8
AGAINST – SafePets UK: We already have laws against dog poop not being picked up yet it is everywhere. Pounds are already full of chipped strays and dumped dogs so how exactly is this going to help? 9
FOR - Dog Theft Action & Vets Get Scanning: We have campaigned as part of the Microchipping Alliance to make permanent identification compulsory for all dogs since 2009. The Microchipping Alliance comprises a number of animal welfare charities, assistance dog charities, veterinary organisations, dog membership organisations, and other organisations affected by dog issues, and today welcomed the Government’s long-awaited announcement. 10 11
AGAINST – DDA Watch: Good luck to all dog owners….you’re gonna need it! 12
FOR – The Kennel Club: After speaking with dog owners around the country we are confident compulsory microchipping will be well received. A recent Kennel Club survey highlighted public support for compulsory microchipping, with almost 90% of people strongly in favour. 13
AGAINST – RSPCA: We don’t believe this will reduce the number of stray dogs,make owners act more responsibly to their dogs or ensure fewer dogs bite. [15. David Bowles, head of public affairs ]
FOR – PDSA: Compulsory microchipping is not a solution to the problem of aggressive dogs and related injuries. However, it will help encourage responsible ownership, quicker re-unification of lost dogs with their owners and will enable enforcement bodies to identify owners more easily in cases of irresponsible ownership. 14
NEUTRAL – 4 Paws Patrol: Only having one company that stores the information would help, too many databases! [16. Source ]
FOR – Environment Secretary Owen Paterson; Dogs Trust; Blue Cross; Battersea Dogs & Cats Home: See Defra Press Release
Defra has announced that from 6 April 2016 all dogs will be required by law to have a microchip.
This is obviously a huge headline in the doggie world, so we here at Dogs In The News will be tracking all the latest news and views and reporting them as the day goes on.
Compulsory microchipping has been an ongoing debate for quite some time, but a decision has finally been reached. From April 2016, all dogs in England will have to have a microchip by law. This will be implemented via changes to the Animal Welfare Act.
The government says owners who refuse to comply face fines of up to £500.
The BBC reports that this venture is “aimed at cutting the growing number of strays” and abandoned animals and relieving pressure on charities. “A legal loophole could also be closed, meaning owners could face prosecution if their dog attacked on private land.”
It is not yet clear whether it will be breeders or owners who are responsible for getting their dogs chipped, but the Dogs Trust says: “We believe it will be the owners to chip and update details but we hope the law will ask breeders to microchip before sale.”
Currently, around 60% of dogs in the UK are already microchipped.
Northern Ireland introduced compulsory microchipping in April 2012, while Wales is considering it. The Scottish government has said that, while it recognised the benefits of microchipping, there was “no evidence compulsory microchipping would effectively tackle welfare issues”.
Supporters of compulsory microchipping, including many major animal charities, say that it will help reduce the number of dangerous dog attacks by making the owner of that animal (traceable through the chip) responsible for its actions.
They also believe it will help with issues of animal abuse and abandonment, again because the dog’s history will be known and the perpetrators tracked. In the same way, it will help target puppy farmers and unethical breeders. They purport it will encourage ‘responsible’ dog ownership.
Some claim that the move will also help reduce the rising number of dog thefts in Britian, but that depends whether a chip is considered legal proof of ownership. At the moment it is not, but this may change under the new legislation.
Finally, it will guarantee that dogs in rescue centres are genuinely charity cases with nowhere else to go, not misplaced family pets.
Critics, including a major canine publication, question the effectiveness and likely cost of the move. They also argue that responsible owners will microchip regardless of legislation, while the rogues who are the target of the law will disregard it. There is some truth to the fact that, if a dog does not have a microchip and cannot be traced to an owner, there will be no way to fine or admonish the guilty party!
There are also those who query why it has to be a microchip specifically, and not some other form of permanent identification, such as a tattoo. Some believe that microchipping – the insertion of a foreign body – is bad for the dog, though these claims are mostly unsubstantiated. Some dogs can have a reaction to the chip, but these cases are rare and not life threatening.
The British Veterinary Association has called the announcement “a giant leap forward for dogs and their owners” and said: “Microchipping is a safe and effective way to permanently identify a dog”.
““Microchipping is a small cost in terms of dog ownership with veterinary practices offering microchipping for around £15-£20 or for free as part of a practice promotion. Dogs Trust and other rehoming charities are also offering free microchipping at their centres and through local authorities.
“But microchips are only as useful as the information on the database and so it is essential that owners realise that they must keep their details up to date.”
The Kennel Club is also in favour of compulsory microchipping - you can read their full statement here.
The BVA have released a report about compulsory microchipping here.
We’ll bring you more news and views as we have them folks, including statements from the major parties. We’d love to know what you all think, so do please drop us a line!Tags: Articles, Current Affairs, Microchipping
January 16th, 2013Articles
Garmin, global leader in satellite navigation, disappointed dog lovers this week when they announced a new line of what they are calling “electronic dog training systems”. The BarkLimiter bark reduction collars and Delta series of training collars do not appear to be available in the UK or Ireland yet, but went on sale in the US this week.
They can call them “training aids” all they like: we all know they’re talking about shock collars.
Shock collars: a family of training collars that deliver electrical shocks of varying intensity and duration to the neck of a dog via a radio controlled electronic device incorporated into a dog collar, or as a response to vibrations caused by barking
Garmin claims that these devices are “designed to help dogs learn” and “feature proven and safe electronic correction technology”. But most respected dog trainers question the effectiveness of these devices as a learning tool, no matter how ‘safe’ they may be. In fact, many believe that they can actually be counter-intuitive or even dangerous in the wrong hands.
They are illegal in Wales for this exact reason, and the Kennel Club has an ongoing campaign to have them banned in the rest of the UK.
We here at Dogs In The News believe that corporal punishment – even in the form of a slight electric shock – is never the answer, and are extremely disappointed to learn of Garmin’s decision to produce and promote these highly controversial devices.
A quick skim of the product description for the BarkLimiter is enough to make anyone’s skin crawl! Garmin never actually uses the words “electric shock”, preferring the less emotive phrase “stimulation”, but there is no disguising the uncomfortable truth about what these devices do. They wax lyrical about their “integrated stainless steel contact points” which can be adjusted to the “optimum intensity” and deliver “consistent and instantaneous correction”. They also offer “accessory collars” for “even more style”! Disgusting.
As for the Delta Series, which also comes with accessory collars: they claim this is a “virtual leash”, offering “a wide range of customizable correction settings… and 18 levels of momentary and continuous stimulation”. By which they mean “a way to zap your dog from 100 feet away, when shouting, whistling and profanity have all been ignored”. We’re sure the dog will come running back…
To be honest, while not condoning their use in any way, we can see the appeal of shock collars, especially when they’re marketed in this way. They offer a quick and lazy solution to what Garmin term as “nuisance” behaviour. The product description makes it sound like, for just $100 (£63) you can pop the collar out of the box, on to the dog and, voila have a pet which misbehaves and barks no more. They even describe the collars as “set it and forget it” devices.
Perhaps they do work, in terms of stopping unwanted behaviour – we know we wouldn’t do something very often if we got a “stimulation” in increasing degrees every time we did it! But what they don’t do is address the underlying reason for the dog’s actions, or consider their emotional state. In short, the dog may stop the misbehaviour, yes, but has he really ‘learned’ anything?
We suggest that anyone considering trying one of these collars spends the $100 on training sessions with a qualified behaviourist instead; you’ll have a happier, quieter dog or a faster, more reliable recall without the need for shock therapy!
Tags: Articles, Current Affairs
Victoria Stillwell – “Is punishment really a quick fix?”
PETA’s statement on the use of shock collars (and electric fences)
British Small Animal Veterinary Association’s statement
June 14th, 2012Articles
We know many of our readers have been following the ongoing saga of Lennox, the dog seized in Belfast under Breed Specific Legislation (BSL) back in May 2010.
Lennox, then 5 years old, was taken from his home and family during a routine license check. The dog, which the family claimed was an “American Bulldog Labrador cross” was deemed to be a Pit Bull (a banned breed) and was taken into the custody of Belfast City Council.
There had been no complaints registered against him. He was licensed, neutered, kept in a secured yard, and always muzzled when off the property when walking with his owners.
It was ruled that he should be destroyed under the Dangerous Dogs Act (DDA), based solely on his appearance.
Since then, he has been kept in a basic kennel and his family have not been allowed to see him.
While he has been inside, his family have been tirelessly appealing his death sentence, upheld by two courts to date. This Tuesday (12th June) was the final judgement day.
Unfortunately, Chief Justice Girvan maintained that Lennox should be destroyed.
Since the verdict was announced, Twitter has been alive with various different attempts to overturn this decision, including a petition to “Boycott Belfast”, a request for emails to be sent to the Prime Minister, and many pleas for help from celebrity dog behaviourists.
According to Ulster TV, Peter Robinson (First Minister of Ireland) is “very unhappy” with the decision, but he states that “Politicians have no power to interfere with decisions of the courts”.
It should be stressed that Lennox has not yet been euthanized, and an official statement on the Save Lennox website said that the family were currently “in talks with their legal team”.
It is somewhat hard to keep track of the exact progress of the case, due to the nature of social media, plus some hyperbole and irresponsible reporting, but as far as we can tell, Lennox is still alive and his family are planning another round of appeals to save his life.
The Examiner claims that they “will appeal to the Higher Court of England in hopes his case is accepted in their court”.
The petition to spare him is still open and anyone who has not yet signed it can do so here.
We suggest that you follow us on Twitter and Facebook for any updates as and when we have them. We can’t always monitor our feed and we do like to take time to verify sources though, so it may not be instantaneous.
So, we would also suggest that you follow the official Save Lennox campaign accounts and the DDA Watch accounts as well, as they seem to be the most informed on this matter and the most prompt to spread the word. Any official statements can be found on the Save Lennox website.
What is interesting is that most sources are now referring to Lennox as a Pit Bull or of “of Pit Bull type”: previously the family always maintained that he was an “American Bulldog Labrador cross” and should never have been seized under the DDA in the first place.
We are not sure if this change of breed is due to something which came to light in court or ‘Chinese whispers reporting’, but it seems significant that “Ms Barnes [Lennox’s owner] has accepted her pet was a Pit Bull type” (BBC). IF he is accepted to be a Pit Bull or of Pit Bull type (an ambiguous phrase if ever there was one), the family’s legal stance will be quite different.
We, of course, feel for the family having to go through this ordeal and especially mourn for the poor dog caught up in the middle of all this – who has spent the last two years of his life in a kennel when he should have been at home.
Rest assured that the fight for Lennox, and indeed all dogs affected by the highly flawed DDA, will go on.Tags: Articles, Current Affairs
April 21st, 2012Articles
Compulsory microchips for dogs are to be introduced in England, under plans expected to be announced on Monday.
Ministers are expected to say that every newborn puppy should be microchipped to make it easier to trace and prosecute owners of violent dogs.
The chip will contain details of the dog’s owner and address, which will be stored on a central database to which the police and the RSPCA will have access.
Supporters, including many major animal charities, say microchipping will help reduce dog attacks by making it easier to trace owners, and that it will speed up efforts to find new homes for stray animals. They purport it will encourage ‘responsible’ dog ownership.
Critics question the effectiveness and likely cost of the move. They also argue that responsible owners will microchip regardless of legislation, while the rogues who are the target of the law will disregard it.
There are also those who query why it has to be a microchip specifically, and not some other form of permanent identification, such as a tattoo.
Over half of all dogs are already microchipped voluntarily in the UK, with over 5000 canines chipped each week. Most people say they get their pet microchipped to increase its chances of finding its way home again if it were lost or stolen.
There are also practical and administrative reasons for doing, so such as the recording of some health test results in the case of purebred dogs, and to comply with pet travel regulations. All major organisations, such as the Police and Guide Dogs for the Blind, already microchip their animals so as to give them a unique identifier.
Supporters of the scheme say that it will help reduce the number of dangerous dogs by making the owner of that animal (traceable through the chip) responsible for its actions.
They also believe it will help with issues of animal abuse and abandonment, again because the dog’s history will be known and the perpetrators tracked. In the same way, it will help target puppy farmers and unethical breeders.
Finally, it will guarantee that dogs in rescue centres are genuinely charity cases with nowhere else to go, not misplaced family pets.
The main argument against the proposals is that it would be very hard to enforce, and that, as stated before, it would target responsible owners (not least in terms of cost) while the irresponsible ones will fail to comply. The administrative duties alone would have to be considered, as well as the potential that people will falsify details to avoid being tracked.
There are also those who believe that microchipping – the insertion of a foreign body – is bad for the dog, though these claims are mostly unsubstantiated. Some dogs can have a reaction to the chip, but these cases are rare and not life threatening.
Scotland has stated that they have no intention of introducing these laws North of the border just yet.
What do our readers think? Will compulsory microchipping help with problems like abandonment and dangerous dogs, or is it just a way to punish responsible owners? The Daily Mail estimate that it costs around £35 pounds to microchip a dog, but surely this is a small price to pay for peace of mind, knowing that your dog can be returned to you if it is ever lost? Are your dogs chipped at present? If not, will you have them chipped if this legislation comes into effect?Tags: Articles, Current Affairs, Microchipping
February 19th, 2012Articles
It’s not often that we report non-canine news on this website, but an interesting report was published last week which we thought merited a mention.
This report, which reviewed 100 studies on the physical discipline (smacking) of children going back 20 years, concluded that: “smacking children has no positive effect on their behaviour, and in fact in many cases makes them more aggressive and anti-social”.
Now, we’re not in any position to start offering a commentary on parenting techniques, but the findings of the report seemed highly relevant in the context of dog training methods.
As you probably already know, there are largely two schools of thought when it comes to dog training: the reward based method, where good behaviour is reinforced and bad behaviour is redirected or ignored; and the punitive method, where bad behaviour has consequences, often involving physical correction.
This physical correction can take many forms, from a Cesar Milan-esque “dominance roll”, to a push on the bottom to force a dog into a sit rather than letting him figure it out on his own. It may also involve physical barriers, an anti-bark citronella collar, an electric shock collar, or a corrective jerk on a choke chain.
Sorry, I mean “check chain”.
Anyway, the cleverest among you will probably have already figured out where I am going with this. If physically correcting (smacking) your child has been proven to have negative consequences, both in the short and long term, why do some dog trainers and owners still advocate outdated punitive methods when training your dog?
The study went on to say that corporal punishment for children “weakens the parent-child bond”: any positive dog trainer will tell you that trust is a huge part of your relationship with your dog and that without a positive bond between the two of you very little can be achieved.
It also found links between smacking and lower IQ levels and depression; a dog that is simply pushed around or stopped from exhibiting certain behaviours has not ‘learnt’ anything of value, and may actually simply be repressing those behaviours. This is not effective long term and definitely not good for your dog’s mental state.
Many dog trainers say that it the job is more about educating the owners than teaching the dog. A dog may be thought of as ‘naughty’ for merely displaying classic canine behaviour, which is misinterpreted as a delinquent or vindictive action by their owners.
As Karen Pryor explains (much better than we ever could) in her book “Don’t Shoot the Dog”, the best results are achieved though a deeper understanding of the animal, and by addressing the underlying cause of the behaviours rather than just physically stopping or correcting the problem. She also believes that animals learn more quickly when allowed to problem solve and offer the desired behaviour by themselves.
Obviously, discussing the differing schools of thought on dog training and positive vs negative reinforcement are all far beyond the scope of this simple article. Everyone has their own thoughts on the matter (as I am sure they do with parenting methods!)
However, what we think almost all of us can agree on is that physical punishment alone has no real place in the modern world of dog training.
So let’s say no to punitive training methods once and for all. After all, if they’re no good for our children, they’re probably no good for the dog.Tags: Articles, Current Affairs, Debate
February 12th, 2012Articles
…But Cuddy’s on the case!
If you have a pet insurance policy with Lloyds TSB or Halifax, you might want to read the fine print, after recent announcements that they are pulling out of the market.
Lloyds has stopped renewing policies from 1st February this year and Halifax stopped on 24th September 2011, leaving more than 50,000 policy holders looking for cover, according to reports.
The sudden manner in which these banks have ceased providing pet insurance will leave many policy holders high and dry.
“This is a huge blow to responsible owners who have pet insurance but are having it taken away from them through no fault of their own,” said Carl Padgett, President of the British Veterinary Association (BVA).
Both Lloyds and Halifax state on their websites that they will honour the policies until the annual renewal date (ie, only for the next twelve months or less): “If you still need insurance for your pet(s) [after your annual renewal date] you should seek a new pet insurance provider.”
For many, this answer is simply unacceptable, as any pre-existing conditions their pets may have will be excluded from their new policies. This means they will have to pay for treatments which they previously had covered by their insurance. This will be a financial blow to most owners, and may even lead to pets with long term illnesses, such as cancer or arthritis, being put down when their owners can no longer afford the vet bills.
Of course, once this injustice had been uncovered, Beverley Cuddy, Dogs Today Editor and champion of the underdog, sprung into action. She has started a Facebook campaign to put pressure on the banks to honour their commitments. “Cover for life should mean exactly that!” she states emphatically on her blog.
“Responsible owners trusted these banks because of the millions they spend on advertising that makes them look a safe pair of hands.
“Halifax spent £47 million selling us Xtras – how will insurance clients find the Xtra to keep their pets alive? Lloyds spent £53 million selling us the journey ahead – but pet insurance customers face a one-way trip to the vet.”
She has also composed a draft letter to the chairmen of each bank, which she requests people print and post, along with any amendments or additions they feel necessary, even if they have not personally been affected.
“Lloyds and Halifax need to know that pet lovers stick together. If they are allowed to get away with this others will follow.”
Please get involved in the campaign in any way that you can.
If you have been affected by these changes yourself, you can get in touch with Beverley via her blog. “Individuals who have been affected by this obviously need to fight for compensation,” she states, and promises to point you in the right direction for help.
The BVA recommends that pet owners whose policies are affected should speak to their own vets as soon as possible to discuss existing treatment, alternative treatment options, and future insurance cover. If you wish to speak to the people at Halifax, the number they are giving out is 0845 850 0265, while Lloyds’ is 0800 032 7145.
The BVA have also compiled a Pet Insurance Consumer Guide, in partnership with the Association of British Insurers (ABI). The Guide explains the benefits of pet insurance, the different types of policy, and outlines a number of areas to consider.Tags: Articles, Current Affairs
January 26th, 2012Articles
This week, the BBC and the UK Kennel Club announced that, for the first time, the English Setter had joined the list of Vulnerable Native Breeds, after a 33% drop in registrations from 2010. (A Vulnerable Native Breed is classified as a breed which originated in the UK and which now registers less than 300 puppies a year.)
The Kennel Club blamed this drop on “celebrity impacts on breed popularity”: more than 6,000 Long and Short coated Chihuahuas were registered by the Kennel Club in 2011, for example, compared to some 3,000 dogs across the 25 vulnerable British breeds. Pugs and Huskies have also shot up in popularity.
Caroline Kisko, Kennel Club Secretary, said: “Celebrities, popular culture and fashion play a big part in today’s society and unfortunately, dogs are not immune from our fickle tastes.”
As Crufts approaches, the Kennel Club warns against shunning our historic native breeds in favour of more exotic dogs that we fail to understand and for which we are unable to offer the right lifestyle. “We urge people to do their research before they buy.”
However, the celebrity culture has had a positive impact on the numbers of one former VNB, the Cardigan Welsh Corgi, whose registrations shot up by 134% in 2011. This is thought to be due to the “Royal Wedding Effect”; numerous appearances of the breed in advertising and on television, and the breed’s close relation to the Pembroke Welsh Corgi, owned by the Queen, may have increased demand for these charming dogs.
There’s been good news for other breeds too. Interestingly, the Irish Red & White Setter (similar to the English Setter) registered 43% more puppies last year than in 2010. The Manchester Terrier and the Smooth Collie have also seen leaps in popularity of 42% and 38% respectively.
Plus, the Sealyham Terrier – famously dubbed as “rare as tigers” in a Country Life article this autumn, sparking a campaign to save the breed – actually registered 63 puppies last year (14 more than in 2010), so may not be as endangered as once thought.
Breeds which have left the list in the past due to a rise in numbers in the past include: the Gordon Setter, the Miniature Bull Terrier, the Bloodhound, the Soft Coated Wheaten Terrier, and the Welsh Terrier.
The Irish Terrier was removed from the VNB list in 2010, after just barely making more than 300 registrations, but returns this year after another dip in numbers.
The most vulnerable breeds on the list at present are the Greyhound (numerous outside of the Kennel Club, but with just 14 pedigree pups registered with them in 2011), the Otterhound (38), the Skye Terrier (44), and the Field Spaniel (46).
You can see a full list of 25 the British breeds currently at risk of extinction here.
The KC have had a list of ‘endangered’ British breeds since 2003, and 29 breeds were on it at one point. They, and other organisations such as British Heritage Dog Breeds, have been working hard to preserve these breeds ever since. You can read a more detailed analysis of why these breeds are endangered, and find a list of links to further resources, here.
Do you own one of these breeds? What do you think can be done to save them?Tags: Articles, Current Affairs, VNB
January 17th, 2012Articles
Anyone who has been paying attention to the politics of the dog world (or, indeed, our Twitter feed!) will probably know by now that a follow up to the infamous “Pedigree Dogs Exposed” documentary is soon to be released.
If you’re anything like us, you’ll be bracing yourself for the fallout as the ignorant masses suddenly decide – based on a single hour of television programming – that all dog shows are cruel, all dog breeders are evil, and all pedigree dogs are inbred and unhealthy.
In anticipation of these inevitable criticisms, and in response to those raised in the previous installment, the Kennel Club has released a short film called “Dogs – A Healthy Future”. The film, narrated by Clare Balding, focuses on the main issues that affect dog health and welfare, including hereditary diseases, issues created by breeding dogs for the way that they look, breeding with a closed gene pool, and the problem of cruel puppy farms which breed dogs for profit without regard for their health and welfare.
“The film explores the steps that have already been taken to address these issues and the need for united action in order to ensure that the progress continues in 2012” (official press release).
In short, it looks at what has already been done to safeguard the health and welfare of dogs in Britain and what the KC plans and hopes to do in the future to continue this good work.
It really is an excellent little film, and will hopefully serve as the other side of the argument for anyone who watches PDE2 in exclusion. (The KC recently announced that they would not be participating in the sequel.) Please do watch and share; and let us know what you think.
It’s amazing to see all the efforts the Kennel Club have so far put in to improving the health and welfare of our dogs, and to hear what they have planned to continue this good work.
We will be writing a more detailed response to the film shortly, as well as hopefully blogging about these topics in depth over the next few weeks. The previous “Pedigree Dogs Exposed” changed the landscape of canine history and we have no doubt that this next installment will have a similar impact. Let’s just hope that the points raised in this new KC film also get some press attention.Tags: Articles, Current Affairs, PDE2