Friday, 30 March 2012

Canine Alliance - new balls please...

The Canine Alliance - an alternative logo

Everyone's mantra should be: don't listen to what people say... watch what they do. 

I find it sorts the wheat from the chaff.

Last week, the newly formed Exhbitors' Canine Alliance was whinging about being misunderstood. That was because some of us out here reckoned that the fuss this sub-section of the show-world was making about the vet checks at Crufts was all about preserving a status quo that tolerated exaggerated dogs being exhibited at dogs shows, and had nothing to do (despite the claims) with truly wanting to promote health and welfare in showdogs.

And I thought, fair enough... Maybe I was a bit quick to diss them... maybe some good can come out of it. So, let's give them a chance.

So like everyone else, I have awaited eagerly for news of the outcome of the CA's meet with the KC on Wednesday.  So what happened?

First up, came news that there was to be a joint press release from the CA and the KC.  The CA seemed very pleased about that - hailing it as some kind of historic precedent (when in fact the KC frequently issues joint press releases with other organisations - such as the BVA for example).

But, yesterday, the promised press release failed to materialise, apparently because the two organisations couldn't agree on the wording.

Never mind. The CA instead released the four-page presentation that Mike Gadsby delivered at Wednesday's meeting. And, boy, does that make for depressing reading for those of us hoping that the CA might rise to the occasion.

Gadsby is being lauded for it elsewhere, but why waste so much time in a 90 minute meeting to reiterate gripes that the KC were already fully aware of - rather than use the time to thrash out some common ground and a proper way forward?

In amongst a few fair points, Gadsby makes some bizarre logic-deficit claims - one being that the breeders of the DQd Basset couldn't possibly have produced a dog with a problem because... they are ABS breeders.

Funny! (And not least because if there's anything most of us have in common it is the agreement that the ABS is next to useless because anyone can join it and be given lovely impressive certificates without proper checks - only 15 per cent of ABS breeders have ever been visited.)



In there too is the claim that the vets had not been instructed in the finer points of the highlighted breeds' standards (ie. that Basset Hounds and Clumbers are supposed to have a little ectropion - after all, how else can you achieve that desirable lozenge-shaped eye?).

But I have to say that the thing that I really took exception to was the repellent inference that the independent Crufts' vets Alison Skipper and Will Jeffels were "activists against our sport".  There is absolutely no evidence of this - and indeed a good deal of evidence to the contrary.

Really, they're going to have to do a LOT better than that if they want to be taken seriously by anybody outside the show world.

Finally, this afternoon, the joint press release arrived. And I'm sure the CA will try to put a brave face on it. But it's pretty much a fob-off. The KC has made it absolutely clear that it is not suspending the vet checks (which has prompted some on the Exhibitors Voice and Choice group to start calling for Chairman Steve Dean's resignation because, after all, he's a vet isn't he and so is probably half way to being an animal rights activist himself?).

The KC has of course also said it will listen to any proposals the Alliance would like to present (it would be rude not to), but if there was a real commitment on both sides to finding a compromise here, the wording would have been completely different.  As it is, the ball would appear to be in the CA's court to come up with something the KC might find acceptable.

The problem being, however, that at the moment, the CA's racket is full of holes.

175 comments:

  1. As a pedigree dog owner I am disappointed with the joint statement by the Kennel Club and the Canine Alliance. With the high profile internet coverage of recent events I had hoped that the KC would at least have agreed to crack down and not register litters from non-healh tested parents! Nice try from the Canine Alliance but stonewalled by the KC who would lose lots of money from puppy registrations. I am surprised Jemima that you are so scathing I would have thought that in the interests of dogs and their health you of all people should offer ssuggestions for the way forward, rather than carping at the CAs firat attempt.

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    1. Honestly, if they do that, they should refuse to register litters from non-health testet parents AND from health-tested parents whose results were lacking. Everything else ist just a fig leaf.

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    2. Why reduce the gtene pool further? That's about all that your suggestion would accomplish.

      I thought the breed clubs made the regulations about the required health tests. that's the way it works over here.

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    3. True, good selection cannot occur in the absence of a large gene pool to select from. Health testing (among other things) can address the selection criteria. Having an open registry and policies that limit inbreeding addresses the size of the available selection pool.

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  2. Could you point me to where it says that the Canine Alliance asked the KC to not register litters from non-health tested parents?

    Jemima

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    1. The last two paragraphs of Mr Gadsby's ask that puppy farmers and back street breeders be tackled and after the reference to Assured Breeders who do have to health test it follows that the same treatment is sought for all puppies. No where can I see on the presentation that Mr Gatsby suggests that the two Crufts vets were activists against the sport of dog showing, but rather he questioned the procedure for recruitment of the vets and nothing against the vets themselves. He also questioned the manner in which the vets were briefed by the KC, perhaps the vets were put in a no win situation by the KC. As you say yourself perhaps you were rather quick to diss them, give them a chance and some support if you really do want to improve health in all pedigree dogs not just the ones you singled out.

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    2. Actually, I had missed the last two pars, so thank you. It does indeed say:

      "We are not here today simply to highlight the failures in this health initiative, but to insist that these inspections in their current format are ceased until a solution better suited to ensure fairness and openness is agreed. We need to demonstrate to the world that we are very serious about the health and welfare of our dogs not just 15 exhibits. We have to ensure that ALL our pedigree dogs have acceptable levels of health enabling them to lead happy healthy lives. The KC needs to reinforce and defend the actions of the vast majority of show breeders who have displayed for decades their resolve to breed with health and temperament as a priority.
      Furthermore they must exclude and condemn those who fail to demonstrate positive breeding practises to achieve this ideal. They must once and for all address the puppy farmers and back street breeders whose puppies they happily register without care for their welfare."

      However, Mr Gadsbuy absolutely does infer that the two vets are "activists" against the sport of dog-showing in writing:

      "In view of the very late selections the vets could not have been vetted properly and nowhere on the application form was a requirement that any antagonistic views the candidates may have to the discipline of showing dogs be revealed. Was it naive of the KC not to consider that those 'independent' vets who volunteered might be aligned with activists against our sport?"

      Jemima

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    3. Jemima I disagree that Mr Gadsby inferred that the two Crufts vets were activists against dog showing. He complains about the recruitment proceedure and the application form for the job at Crufts and that the KC failed to consider the possibility of activism. Indeed I believe that one of the vets is or has already been the show vet for UK Toy Championship Show and that would likely have been known by Mr Gadsby as he is a regular exhibitor and judge. The CA want across the board vet testing of all breeds and the present system extending but until that happens it is an unsatisfactory situation to continue as is. The employment of vets for Crufts only took a few weeks to recruit and it follows that if the KC dealt fairly with all breeds of dog it need not be a lengthy process. The sport will withstand scruitiny and the CA want fairness and transparency and this will surely mean healthier dogs succeeding at shows. One thing that always strikes me as odd is why people such as yourself always assume that the worst examples of any breed are from people who show their dogs. Where is the actual evidence for such a sweeping statement?

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    4. Now which bit of "Was it naive of the KC not to consider that those 'independent' vets who volunteered might not be aligned with activists against our sport" do you think did NOT infer that the vets might be activists? Believe me, the BVA has read it that way.

      Gadsby makes several erroneous assumptions and this is one of them: "In view of the very late selections the vets could not have been vetted properly". How on earth does he know that? Now I don't know the exact extent of the vetting - I wasn't there. And neither was Gadsby. But it is impossible to believe that they weren't asked about their general attitude towards dog showing given how much rested on it and of course the KC knew that they had previous show connections.

      If I'm having a pop at the CA it's because I'm disappointed. The CA could be a force for the good. But if it genuinely wants to stand up for dog health, as opposed to just see off the critics, this is not the way to go about it.

      A couple of token paragraphs at the end of Gadsby's missive asking the KC to only register pups from health-tested stock is just naive. What on earth do you think us campaigners have been asking for, over and over again, for the past however-many years? And, of course, Gadsby couldn't resist the diversion to puppy-farmers and BYBs. They are both problems, but what we're talking about here is the damage done by the show-ring and how to put that right.

      Jemima

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    5. It looks like you, me and the BVA all read the Gadsby paragraphs differently so it is unlikely that we can agree about his presentation. Crufts 2012 ended on the 11th March and as far as the CA goes it was born as a result of the mishandling by the KC of the vet checks. From the outset the CA has wanted vet checks for all breeds, how difficult can this be for the KC to set up and why do you consider this a bad thing? The CAs recent existance has been vehicle for many involved in showing dogs to seek a better deal for all pedigree dogs by trying to influence the KC. What is so wrong with this new alliance trying to do this and why lose heart with them when they have existed for less than a month. Give them a chance after all any progress is better than no progress. The 5 million dogs in the UK, referred to in the comments below are unlikely to have all been bred by the exhibitors at dog shows. Indeed the Breed Record Supplement issued quarterly, which includes my own breed, contains far more breeders than exhibit the breed at dog shows.How can you possibly know that the bad breeding comes only from show breeders? My own breed is one of the HPBs and I contact all the owners of puppies I have bred to ensure I am not breeding dogs with health problems. Furthermore there are no required health tests for my breed, but that does not mean that I do not health test my dogs or that I would be unhappy being checked by a vet at a dog show. I believe that all dogs should be health tested before they are bred from and not bred if they fail any test. The last thing I would want for anyone who bought a dog from me is to hear that the dog was unhealthy and many show people feel as I do. With your experience you could offer helpful suggestions rather than, in your words dissing the CA.

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  3. Jemima Its a start. You are so quick to make judgement imo. I think the CA have done well getting this far in a short space of time. I will hold my judgement as only time will tell what they achieve. At least they are doing something rather than twittering nastiness on a blog

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  4. At least the CA met one of their objectives. They demonstrated their transparency and honestly for all to see - it’s about THEM and their SPORT; not about the health of dogs. That was clear to many that could see through the spin from the start, and the first thing on their agenda of course, was to suspend the health checks. So they have now formally, and officially, shown their true colours. And amongst all the spin; now we can see, very clearly, who is for the dogs and who is about self and sport. The first step to tackling a problem is to flush it out and perhaps that is the best we are going to get by the actions of these people.

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    1. How exactly did the CA demonstrate that they care for themselves and not the health of the dogs??? I question the ability of some people to comprehend what they read. The CA wants health checks across the board, not only for a few breeds. I just don't understand the animosity towards people who are concerned about the health of all dogs and are trying to be pro-active.
      I am in the US and am just trying to figure out why people on this blog are so negative about the CA, Pam

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  5. Jemima you really do scrap the bottom of the barrel, you wont give them a chance, this is there first try. you are not the saviour of dogdom because if you were you would be sorting out bad rescues in Ireland and england and puppy farms, as well as show breeding
    You think you can breed problems out in 3 years that most of the breeders today didn't put in the breed there breed, this was made to be many years ago, im sorry but you really are spouting crap on this blog, i used to think you were ok had some good ideas and brought to the front health issues, but really you want to become Jesus Christ the saviour of dogs, seriously !!!!!!!!

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    1. No they may not have created the problems in the breed , but they chose to buy dogs with those problems and continue breeding those problems.

      I would not buy a bassett or a bulldog as I find them too extreme, the people who do buy them are obviously already predisposed to like and accept those features that cause the dog problems and if they decide to breed after living with the dogs they obviously see nothing wrong with those extreme features

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    2. Thats because there not YOUR choice of Breed, what right have you to tell people they must not buy the breed they love, My love is German Spitz and Kees BUT YOU feel you have a right to tell people to buy what YOU think is right, your all little hitlers, like i said you can not turn anything around in 3 years

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    3. All this talk about "turning things round in 3 years" is a nonsense. Horizon on the BBC made a programme expressing concerns about the Bulldogs in the 1970's, yet extreme examples are still rewarded in the show ring in the second decade of the 21st century!

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    4. If you can't breed problems out in 3 years (quite understandably), why not stop showing the breed until such time as you HAVE bred the problems out?

      I love showing my dog, but it's health and being fit for function is way more important.

      The person who is, in future years, seen to be the architect of the "new, healthy version" of some of these breeds, will be remembered long after the winners of a few CCs have been forgotten.

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  6. I am reading both this and the CA pages with interest at the moment. I love dogs and really do wish the show world would get its act in order for the welfare of the dogs. Sadly it would seem from the comments on the CA pages that it is all about the breeders, their egos and their arrogance. There are moderate, sensible dog loving breeders out there I know but at the moment they seem to be silent. The vet checks at shows have to stay, what dog loving breeder in their right mind would object to a vet examination? Yes they should be extended to cover more breeds. I am just pleased that the KC have started to implement it.

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  7. To the CA and all their blah..blah..blah.

    Set example and fix your houses..your chandeliers of presumed brilliance are flickering from compromised current.

    Or is it you prefer to see a continuance of pooches in peril by the very hands you use to clap for defendants of your OWN prestige.

    It's about the welfare of YOUR dogs. The writing is on the wall..the showing industry has been involved (whether consciously or ignorantly..at this point it no longer matters) in breeding compromised dogs..is that not correct??

    Move from denial into progressive and humane light.

    Be the ones to set example as you are the upper snots of all those below you (puppy mills and backyard breeders). Need new blood..perhaps including those associated with the CA.

    You continue to bang your head against the wall and justify by wearing a helmet..just stop banging your head.

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    1. Barry, wow, what you've just said is one of the most insanely idiotic things I have ever read. At no point in your rambling, incoherent response were you even close to anything that could be considered a rational thought. Everyone on this blog is now dumber for having read it. Why are you against people who want all dogs to be health tested? Do you know anyone personally who is involved or are you just parroting things others have told you???

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    2. I'll keep it simple for you and answer your three questions directly..no..no and no. Please explain where you think I am wrong..follow the bouncing ball.

      But I am glad I excited you.

      Are you one of those 'smart' folks who continue to inbreed dogs for your viewing pleasure?

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    3. Hahahahahaha, you just made my night!!!
      I will take this slow just for you Barry. I only asked 1 question that could be answered no; "Do you know anyone personally who is involved or are you just parroting things others have told you?" That was the one that answering yes or no to would have made sense.
      The first question was; "Why are you against people who want all dogs to be health tested?" Your answer was "no". Maybe you were to busy bouncing your balls to be able to use basic comprehension skills ;), Pam

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    4. To answer your question, no I am not a breeder. I do own dogs that I show here in the US.
      Every dog I own has their CHIC (tested free for VWd, the DM marker, eyes CERF'd hips Good, elbows normal, and Cardiac clear) Pam

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  8. Couldn't agree more with Anonymous's comment ( Mar 30, 2012 12:59 PM )

    This was only ever about the health checks and breeders bruised ego's not the welfare of all purebred dogs.

    Good to hear the KC is standing firm on their decision to continue the health checks for the foreseeable future.

    Louise.

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  9. "Gadsby makes some bizarre logic-deficit claims - one being that the breeders of the DQd Basset couldn't possibly have produced a dog with a problem because... they are ABS breeders.

    Funny! (And not least because if there's anything most of us have in common it is the agreement that the ABS is next to useless because anyone can join it and be given lovely impressive certificates without proper checks - only 15 per cent of ABS breeders have ever been visited.)"

    Jemima, you seem to have totally missed the point. Mr Gadsby said "One of the breeds excluded was the Basset Hound winner, the breeders of which are one of the Kennel Club’s esteemed 'assured breeders'. This accolade is surely the 'jewel' in the Kennel Club’s PC crown, so how could it be, that with the high levels of scrutiny employed by the Kennel Club to police the quality of this scheme, that the very best of this particular breeders’ stock was considered to have 'exaggerations that adversely effected its health and welfare'? The Kennel Club endorses the puppies available from their assured breeders on one hand, feeding them to the wolves with the other."

    This is simply pointing out the KC's own double standards, whereby the KC's right hand fully endorses the Basset Hound breeders as being in the top echelon and to be aspired to, and the left hand disqualifies their dogs as being sub-standard. He's pointing out they can't have it both ways; either the KC is endorsing their puppies as "having the best chance of a healthy happy life" or they're admitting that the ABS is a nonsense.

    That's not a strange 'logic-deficit claim' at all; it's totally logical. One of the KC's statements MUST be false. Either ABS puppies are as good as is hmanly possible, or the ABS scheme is poor.

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  10. Puppy farming is an evil practice that is conducted outside the existing laws on animal welfare. I agree the Kennel Club could and should have done much more to stop this practice but so should Councils, the police and the RSPCA.
    I get very disheartened and more than a little fed up by the constant attempt to open some sort of bidding war of suffering. "I'll see your health compromised show dogs and raise you fifty breeding bitches in squalid conditions on a Welsh puppy farm."
    Big welfare abuses never excuse small ones and the systemic failure to apply regulations in one area doesn’t mean there’s no point in attempting to regulate on other matters.
    I’m also disheartened by way some breeders are attempting to use, abuse, health testing as some sort of pseudo-scientific fig leaf covering a last ditch attempt to preserve exaggerated breed types .
    We should not forget that the dog show community has moved a long way from the traditional default position of closing ranks and ignoring all criticism. Just look at how the CA has wrapped itself in the language of health and welfare. Some would have you believe that all the important points of principle have already been won and we are now left debating method and speed rather than direction of travel.
    It’s pretty obvious who's winning the aguments but let's not get drawn into thinking it’s all been reduced to a matter of nuance and semantics. There’s a whole lot more than semantics between those who want genuinely independent outside scrutiny of the show scene and those who want some sort of veterinary nepotism applied towards breeds like the Basset and the Clumber.
    Kevin Colwill

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    1. There is also a question of what is the definition of a puppyfarmer.

      The show scene would probably define everyone who breeds but does not show as a puppyfarm.

      I would consider a puppyfarm anyone who keeps their dogs in bad conditions and breeds large numbers of puppies for profit .
      But plenty of show breeders would fit into that catagory and be defended by their peers because they have won a lot and judge the shows they want to win

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    2. Sadly the lines are blurred. I have direct experience of one show kennel where, aside from the rosettes, KC awards and owner having judged at Crufts, there was little distinction between their husbandry and breeding practices and that of a puppy farmer :( I have no idea how common this experience is, but that it exists at all tell us that we should stop pigeon-holing different types of breeder and simply split them into 2 categories responsible & ethical OR irresponsible & unethical.

      The lines are too blurred. Irresponsible breeding is irresponsible breeding. Why is irresponsible show breeding considered 'better' or less worthy of attention than irresponsible back yard breeding?

      That Mr Gadbsy's priority was NOT addressing irresponsible breeding FIRST speaks volumes. It's just a shame the devoted followers are too busy crying "puppy farms" to hear it :(

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    3. I went to the USA with my first Papillon last month to show him for 2 weekends in conformation. I ended up seated in an area with many other toy breeds, and people's dogs were lifting legs and peeing on the owners' chair legs, on stranger's crates, on people's pants legs, etc. When I notified the dogs' owners, they called for the clean-up volunteers to attend to the messes (!), but all of them told me "These are kennel dogs! Of course they're not house-trained. They live in tile-floored runs so their coats can grow and stay nice and clean. They're not obedience dogs, for God's sake! You can't train toy breeds not to pee in the house." Ugh! I've shown dogs for years, but each of my dogs is a house-trained indoor pet that also competes in agility, obedience, sheepdog trials, etc. I would be mortified if any of my dogs lifted a leg on a chair leg, show or not.

      I probably didn't see this earlier, as I had never owned or shown a toy breed. But knowing the extreme intelligence and biddability of my house-trained Papillon (a TDCH--Trick Dog Champion--at 13 months old), I feel so sorry for the poor dogs condemned to live in outdoor kennels on tile floors... all to preserve their coats. To me, that's not much better than a puppy mill from a psychological perspective.

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  11. I went to a presentation about the ABS the other day and I was surprised to hear a few things. You are quite right that most of them have not been visited yet, but they have visited all the breeders who breed a lot and no one can join now if they breed more than 2 litters in a year without having an inspection first. Apparently most of their members only breed a litter every 3 years so there can’t be any puppy farmers who are members. I can’t see how it is useless; they have also got rid of more than 1000 breeders who have been “found out” so it does seem to be working now. I think the ABS has only been going a few years, no assurance scheme is perfect and they all take a while to get going, but it seems to me that we are better off with it than without it, so if we all rubbish it, surely it is going to take far longer to make it work? I don’t know how old the RSPCA’s farm assured scheme is, and it’s not perfect, but it’s better than nothing. I always try and buy farm assured meat and free range eggs and in the same way next time I want a dog I will buy an Assured one.
    The problem with all these things on this blog is that everyone seems to want everything to be perfect from day one; whether it is the KC the CA the Vet Checks, the breeds. Why does no-one get any credit for taking the small steps that they are making?
    Jemima, you seem very quick to praise the UKC, who have very few members so can’t make any real difference, yet slow to praise the KC who seem to have made far more sweeping changes that affect far more dogs. You criticise the CA who seem to be asking for improvements for all dogs. As for the AKC I am not sure they are doing much but from what I gather they are in terminal decline anyway which is a shame as they do give money to good causes.
    Surely all these initiatives should be praised? Rome wasn’t built in a day; if everyone is taking steps even if they are small steps then surely it’s a good thing?

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    1. "The problem with all these things on this blog is that everyone seems to want everything to be perfect from day one; whether it is the KC the CA the Vet Checks, the breeds. Why does no-one get any credit for taking the small steps that they are making?"

      That's got it in a nutshell. This blog gives the impression (and as it's written by a professional the impression must be deliberate) that if things aren't instantly 'perfect' (define 'perfect'!) then people are in league with the devil. That's no way to get things done! Acknowledge and laud progress, and watch it continue.

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  12. Care to post that last comment on the DW website or inyour next DW collumn Kevin?

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    1. From Dog World October 2011
      Conformation showing has always presented itself as the ultimate testing ground for pedigree dog breeding. We’ve not gone around saying show winners have narrow esoteric qualities that entitle them to a rosette. We’ve simply said they’re the very best examples of their breed. I’ve never heard anyone apply a caveat to the effect that the best dog in show terms is not the best in our everyday understanding of the word.
      The main reason why Pedigree Dogs Exposed was so shocking to so many outside the show community is that it exposed what looking for ‘the best’ meant to some inside the show world. The programme clearly demonstrated that we weren’t always looking to produce the best all round dogs. Some breeders and exhibitors were only interested in features that they deemed to be representative of their breed. All too often developing these supposed key characteristics of breed type had a seriously negative effect on health and welfare.
      The analogy of the Hans Christen Anderson story ‘The Emperor’s New Clothes’ has been taken up by a few people in the dog world. The original and most appropriate application was in describing breeds where successful show dogs had obvious health issues. The evidence was there for all to see but we chose to play along with the laughable assertion that the breed had been improved by the show ring.
      Hans Anderson’s story attacks arrogance, vanity and toadyism. The dog show community had all three in spades. That is reason enough for me to believe we should now have the humility to give people like Emma Goodman-Milne a fair hearing.
      Of course I don’t think her analysis of showing is right but I can see how she comes to her conclusions. Put bluntly there have been examples of suffering caused by our desire to produce show winning dogs. We hid it behind all manner of euphemisms but the fact remains that breeders took conscious decisions to risk their dogs living less happy, less healthy and shorter lives because they were chasing success in the ring.

      Hang on a minute, what about suffering caused elsewhere – bitches on puppy farms treated like breeding machines, rescues full of unregistered ‘Staffies’ born in rough neighbourhoods with profit the only motive. I refuse to enter in to a bidding war of suffering.The fact that there are many bigger issues in terms of numbers of dogs affected does not absolve the show community of our responsibilities.
      Ms Goodman-Milne is voicing opinions I’d heard expressed many times by ordinary dog lovers. There is a body of opinion that sincerely believes showing is inherently flawed. They simply don’t trust us to put health and welfare ahead of our narrow view of canine aesthetics. We know vast majority of breeders and exhibitors don’t think like that but it’s up to us to prove showing is now back on the right track and no longer going in what Professor Crispin called, ‘a funny direction’.
      I doubt if vet checks for the 15 ‘high profile’ breeds will be enough to achieve that. It’s not my preferred approach but the principle of independent vet testing is crucial to regaining public faith in showing and pedigree dogs in general. I will be supporting these tests as they set an important precedent.
      It’s a lot to ask the 15 breeds put feelings of unfairness aside and accept their role in helping all of us to prove we are putting our dogs first. I’m asking anyway. If a popular rebellion causes the end of vet testing as it caused the end of coat testing we will be sending a very clear signal that everything that’s happened in the wake of Pedigree Dogs Exposed is mere public relations. If the 15 breeds can accept the principle of independent scrutiny we can demonstrate that we’ve listened and we’ve changed.
      Kevin Colwill (aka Convict225)

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    2. My "alter ego" Convict225 has found the the DW website less friendly since the revamp and hence I have been posting more widely.
      I hasten to add that it's technology related rather than editoral policy!!...it's also something I hope will soon be resolved. It's not that I dislike the atmos here but there's no place like home.
      If the charge is that I tailor my opinions to different audiences...not guilty. I've posted a chunk of my DW column from Oct 2011 and I don't think you'll see too many pulled punches. There are still some who haven't forgiven me for coining the phrase "Elnett revolution" to describe the coat testing row.
      Kevin Colwill

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    3. Convict225 is perfect just for the esoteric nature of the name.

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  13. These days being mainly involved in the rescue side, showing only one dog in a very small way and certainly not being connected with the top end of the showing world, I'm trying to see this from both sides. It's increasingly frustrating to read the constant carping and scathing remarks here about anything the CA says or tries to put forward. It's also frustrating that the entire gamut of problems seems to be laid at the door of exhibitors when the whole of the breeding fraternity needs to be targeted. So some people don't like dog shows - fair enough! But, in reality, they have little to do with more than the people who actually take part. Why the obsession with health checks at shows for a few dogs? Unless it's to rub hands with glee over the humiliation of their owners. Would it not be a good idea to focus on the breeding of puppies, making health checks on breeding stock mandatory before registration and making the ABS scheme more than just a certificate. For gods sake stop picking on every little remark and lets try to accentuate the positives and work together.

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  14. What a shame Jemima you spend all your time hitting out at the show side of things. Are you to scared to take on the large scale puppy farmers spread around the UK?
    You only have to look at the discarded stock shown on the Many Tears site to see bad breeding, yet you never mention it. These kennels are the mass production places, where health and welfare never matter.

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    1. So if someone takes a stand on one issue they have to take a stand on every other issue?
      Puppy farming is no excuse for unhealthy breeds!
      PL

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    2. There are tons of groups, from the show community to rescue to government groups, taking on puppy mills. Almost no one was talking loudly and publicly about the problems caused by "good breeders" til PDE.

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  15. Annie Macfarlane31 March 2012 13:08

    As somebody who has been asking the CA questions...and failing to get any answers - and subsequently being called a "dissenter"....lol....I fail to see how the CA can move forward with this type of attitude and with these people at the helm. I watched the first video of the meeting and the only people I saw standing up to talk about their disgust were breeders, judges and exhibitors who had a vested interest in the vet checks being stopped. All these people are judges and will no doubt have judged the breeds at some point - and chosen a BOB. What do they do now? They're scared...frightened that their prestige will show how flawed they really are and how little they really know about dogs! They're scared that they will be the next judge who suffers the "ridicule" of having their chosen BOB banned from entering the group or BIS ring! As these people have been responsible for choosing over exaggerated breed types in the past and rewarding this by giving them BOB...can they really be trusted to run an organisation that says it's dedicated to health and welfare of pedigree dogs? Can we really at them and put our confidence in their experienced hands? There was a lovely example of a Neopolitan Mastiff that won her class at Crufts...and yet....an over-exaggerated dog was given BOB. Why did this happen? If the judges were really behind health and welfare - that they say they are - why didn't this one award the beautiful young bitch BOB?

    I absolutely agree that you cannot trade off puppy farmers and BYBs against show breeders who, apparently, are the creme de la creme in dog breeding! That we should even be discussing the fact that there are huge problems with the dogs the creme de la creme are breeding, confirms there are problems everywhere in dog breeding and no one part is any better than the other!

    There should be no excuses for breeding dogs with exaggerations that mean they cannot see, breathe, hear or run properly....anybody putting forward excuses should be ashamed of themselves - and not supported by others who perhaps do the same. The windows have been cleaned; we see exactly what is going on....we are not stupid! And, for the record, 320 judges, breeders,exhibitors from a population of over 5 million dog owners in the UK does not even scratch the surface of how we all feel....their assumption that the KC is taking them seriously because they agreed to a meeting and put forward a joint press release is ridiculous. I was offered a meeting to discuss my breed with the KC.... Yours truly was offered a meeting at Clarges Street and I didn't for one minute think it was because they were taking me seriously....

    In order for an organisation like this to succeed those at the top have to be the "grass roots" of dog showing....not the same old, same old that appear to have been at the helm of anti-KC campaigns for the last 2 years. I wonder how many of their members have actually had the pleasure of sharing a conversation with any of the Steering Group? How many members of the Steering Group have actually given you the time of day if they see you at a show?

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    1. Good question about putting up an exaggerated dog as BOB, but of course that's how we got here, isn't it?

      I turned off a recent large televised US show when the crippled GSD won best in group over a bunch of lovely, balanced, non-extreme dogs. While certainly some of the herding group has way too much coat and has totally lost most herding instinct, the fact is almost all the rest of the group is still balanced and sound. And yet the GSD won, to the obvious delight of a cheering crowd.

      I have heard grumblings from some breeders of other types of dogs that they are a bit appalled about the GSD as well, yet they win not just breed but frequently Group and BIS.

      The judges have some 'splainin' to do.

      Delete
  16. Have there been anti KC campaigns for the last 2 years? I don't know of any. There was the coat testing issue (still ongoing) this was about requesting a rule change, not anti KC. What are the others, please?

    6,000 people recording support on a Facebook page, and 320 who could make a weeknight meeting at short notice is a great result, as far as I can see. the numbers who have paid up and become members are climbing all the time. As a very new organisation there is not necessarily going to be someone available to answer queries at all times, and perhaps they are prioitising their time to deal with getting things working rather than debating with those who are obviously anti the campaign anyway?

    I can't speak for all of those who have joined the CA, but of the Steering Committee members I have met ( I think 4 or 5) all have been approachable, friendly and more than willing to hold a conversation. I have no reason to believe the others are less so.

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    1. I wouldn't take that six thousand number too seriously. A lot of those people are simply there to watch the train wreck.

      Delete
    2. Steven Seymour has been consistantly anti-KC for years, to name but one.

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    3. Yes and for all his calls over the years for democracy, Steven Seymour couldn't attend the first meeting of the Canine Alliance. Maybe he was washing his hair that evening?

      Delete
    4. Maybe he is smart enough to not want to associate with a group that formed out of unhappiness with the KC vet checks.

      Delete
    5. "A lot of those people are simply there to watch the train wreck."

      That's why I joined. :)

      Kary

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  17. If the Canine Alliance put as much money and effort into improving the health & welfare of their pedigree dogs there would be no need for vet-checks in the first place. Seems like a simple logic to me.

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  18. Annie Macfarlane31 March 2012 16:58

    6000 from a dog owning population of 5 million plus is still a very small percentage ...and then less than 5% of the 6000 agreed the name and strapline - then chose the steering committee members...all very democratic! And now those of us who are considered "dissenters" are reported to Facebook for our comments.....(oh yes I was!) ROFL. Perhaps they're not happy dealing with the harsh realities that befall those of us that raise our heads above the pulpit - having previously been cushioned by the KC who took all the flack for them!!

    Last year we had the "elnett revolution" - great name!...this year the vet check scandal!!!! Wake up and smell the coffee.... Guess who's been at the helm of both????

    What I find incredibly "telling" though are those who aren't on the list of supporters! From what I can see not everybody supports the CA in the world of dogs!

    Anyway, they've proved what they're really about and now I won't be bothered with the propoganda any more - preferring to concentrate on those that really are making a difference for dogs - all dogs! ;-) I did give them the benefit of the doubt....but my faith was misplaced! Shame!

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  19. To : Help Our Dogs, At least Mike Gadsby's statement stated that the Canine Alliance wants the KC to take a stance against puppy farming. This initial meeting was always going to be about the Vet checks, with more issues to be tackled as the organisation gets underway. Did you make a similar critical comment about PDE having 2 full programmes and missing that opportunity to make the public aware of the evils of puppy farming?

    Coco Loco, What money? The Canine Alliance has only just started up, and it does not have any dogs. If you mean the members, then read what the Alliance is about, members are all in favour of health testing, it is the manner of these checks which was inappropriate.

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  20. The thousands of pounds in membership fees the Canine Alliance have collected. I forget the last figure stated but as CA are such a transparent organisation I am sure the figure is published on their website somewhere.

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    1. ...and I'm sure they'll let us know the percentage of both members and funds that have come from outside the UK.

      Delete
  21. I actually think vet checks for the ‘at risk group’ in line with the European Convention and UK evidence is the most workable for now. There’s nothing like avoidance of humiliation to increase the pace of change for healthier dogs, and that’s what we all want, isn’t it?, healthier dogs. Good call KC ;-)

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  22. Judging by the applause for the pug CC winners who refused to compete for the BOB today, so they could avoid the vet check, many of the more vocal CA members and supporters are simply anti health checks - whatever Andrew Brace claims!

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    1. Nonsense! They're anti-BIASED vet checks; it should be open and fair vet checks, with an opportunity for appeal, for ALL, not just some.

      Delete
    2. Most of us would be beside ourselves to get a free vet check for our dog! Isn't it funny (in fact no it's not funny, it's crazy) that normally you take your dog to the vet to find out about health issues, but these breeders are avoiding going to one for fear they'll find one and their dog can't win a rosette (or whatever it is they win).

      Delete
    3. Bravo to the brave Pug exhibitors who refused to participate in the Vet Checks at National Toy Dog show yesterday! The pug their own personal gratification to one side and showed that if the Judge was not brave enough to withhold the BOB award then they would do it themselves!
      Let’s hope we see more of the winners in the High Profile breeds acknowledging that they do have health issues, and refusing to go into the group competition until they have corrected those issues and breed dogs that are healthy and can really compete with the other breeds. Professor Bateson was obviously right when he said that dog shows can constitute a powerful lever for change
      And Bravo to for the owners of the Pekingese and Chinese Crested who were prepared to submit their dogs to the health checks and passed with flying colours, and who were also brave enough to plough their own furrow and not be intimidated by Mr Brace and his cohorts.

      Delete
    4. My word, we'd better have our wits about us or we’ll get crushed in the rush to the moral high ground.
      I don’t know the Pug exhibitors; maybe they are long time champions of a less exaggerated conformation for their breed. If they are then I applaud them but I can’t applaud their stance here. If they want meaningful health checks for all breeds they’d be best advised to have the checks done and show healthy dogs have nothing to fear.
      Overall I’m singularly unimpressed by heartfelt demands for health checks for all coming from groups and individuals who had been completely silent on the subject until Crufts.
      Kevin Colwill

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  23. All the health checks in the world won't make a difference if a dog's conformation and structure means its will have to be pts because it's body *broken* by the time it reaches 6.
    Not that I believe health testing is worthless but it doesn't necessarily hold all the answers, breed statistics of things such as long term health issues and longevity are crucial imo
    I show lightly, what is a relatively healthy breed, and do not support the CA, the first video turned me off instantly as it is clearly all about the exhibitors and judges not the dogs.
    If a dog can not be bred to fit the breed standard AND be healthy then the standard needs changing so instead of holding meetings to say how hard done to they are why not put their energy into coming up with healthier breed standards?!?!
    The arguments that excess skin/hair/angulation helps certain breeds perform the job they were originally bred for holds no merit because the working lines of these breeds simply don't have these exaggerations. That doesn't mean all WL are healthy but it does mean these exaggerations hold no relevance to performance.

    And it seems the constant bringing up of puppy farms is their way or trying to divert the negative attention away from themselves TWO WRONGS DO NOT MAKE A RIGHT!

    Also the sheer arrogance that if people dont show or don't breed they know nothing about dogs is ridiculous. I didn't show 10years ago but after a lifetime of owning GSD's as a family i knew enough to move away from the breed because they were turning them into cripples!
    Quite frankly I wouldn't own any of the 15 highlighted breeds. It has nothing to do with how they look but simply down to the fact I want my dogs to live long healthy active lives so why set myself up for heartbreak of losing a dog young.

    If any friends or family mention getting a dog I tell them which ones to avoid....there has to be something fundamentally wrong with a breed when this is the case.
    I ALSO tell them how to avoid buying from possible puppy farms!

    The KC have many faults but in this instance I'm in total agreement and hope they stick to their guns!

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  24. Perhaps Moses brought the breed standards down with him from Mount Sinai ?

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  25. Nice to know you are finished with the CA then Annie as imo you only liked the page to actually try and cause bother. As above poster stated " Why downcry the CA for not starting with Puppyfarmerfs when indeed you do not seem to downcry your buddy Jemima.!!

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    1. Because Jemimas programme was called Pedigree Dogs Exposed , not puppy farms exposed.

      Every time a finger is pointed at show breeders the standard CA war cry is "why don't you tackle puppy farms" You lot are the ones screaming about it and yet the first opportunity you get to actually make it a priority, you're too busy with petty witterings about pod lighting and pen torches!

      If you're not going to make puppy farming a priority then stop throwing it up as a defence. People in glass houses......

      When your own house is on order then feel free to scream puppy farms (have the CA participated in the Welsh Government consultation?Thought not). Until Then you would be best addressing the warped perception of breed standard and beauty.

      It's incredible that CA members assume that because we are interested in the breed issues they create that we are not tackling puppy farming. It's a false assumption!

      Delete
    2. I saw the recent Facebook status of CA and the CA committee member 'liking' someone for being condescending towards someone who dared to hold an alternative opinion. Highly unprofessional. These are the people you have appointed to represent your views and this is how they conduct themselves in public?!

      That no one is permitted to hold an alternative opinion to CA without being labelled a "troll" , a "dissenter" , "a buddy of Jemima" , "AR" it proves that your minds are already made up and all the talk about 'change' is just that. The only change the CA wants is more power over the Kennel Club. Your actions and honest words (like the current fb status & Mike's presentation, not the fake mission statement & strapline) suggest your main desire is really to carry on in the closed world of showdom where (just like puppy farmers) you can remain unaccountable & ignorant to the effects your breeding practice is having on your own dogs, the pups you sell and the owners of health affected dogs.

      Hopefully the good breeders are running to form a professional, inclusive body to differentiate themselves from the Canine Alliance car-crash.

      I suspect the Canine Alliance may single-handedly cause the death of showing if they continue to alienate everyone outside their members, with their spiteful words and priority focus on vet-check suspension, it paints a very poor picture.

      Posting as Canine Alliance on Facebook Diana Sparvin says " thanks to all the supporters who see the bigger picture, and feel sorry for the ones that cannot" That'll be the vast majority of your members then,who cannot see the bigger picture outside the world of Canine Alliance and have completely overlooked that you cannot claim 'responsible for pedigree dogs' then use terminology, language and actions that repel every pedigree dog owner outside the show world (and many within!)

      Delete
    3. @Coco Loco: "Because Jemimas programme was called Pedigree Dogs Exposed , not puppy farms exposed."

      Puppy farms produce pedigree puppies too (or so they have their buyers believe) - and without any health testing. So to omit them from the programmes shows bias, which is unprofessional.

      Delete
  26. Well, it would be very simple to test what the CA really want would'nt it? all the KC have to do is extend the vet check to every BOB - after all they say it's just a quick verification of the dogs being unexaggerated and free from health faults visible to the naked eye. Just a quick hands on and trot up and down. Perhaps that would be too easy!

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  27. I signed on to the Canine Alliance Facebook pages (the official and the unofficial pages) not because I support them, but to keep informed and try to get a balanced view of both sides, and the middle ground between. But I am finding the hysteria, the bias , the intolerance and the misinformation so off-putting that I am less and less inclined to keep reading their pages. Can they not see that their language and behaviour only confirm all the worst suspicions of dog owners outside the world of dog showing about them? As Ronnie Irving pointed out in an American magazine article this week, there are a lot of dog owners/breeders occupying the middle ground at the moment, waiting to see where things are going and open to being convinced one way or the other. The Canine Alliance supporters are doing more to alienate us than to convince us ! They may even push me to a position where I question if I really want to continue going to dog shows at all

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  28. They can come and test my dogs any time they like, I have fit and sound 13&10 year olds who get 1&a half hour walks everyday with the younger bunch, that's around 5miles per day off lead. Any on the BOB Bulldogs,pug, Peke's and Mastino's capable of this?!
    The fact is the reason these dogs are highlighted is that they aren't capable of walking around a ring without gasping for air!
    Sorry I forgot they all live until their teens and have no health issues at all don't they...
    Im afraid it's time to take their head out of the sand face up to the problems and start acting instead of spouting rubbish and behaving like spoilt children who have just been told NO for the first time in their lives!

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  29. Easy solution, full BOB health checks to all breeds including tools such as stethoscope. Checking all breeds of course you need to get rid of the limitation of what to check for as that is unworkable. Single check list for all. Don't see the CA wanting this though, do you?

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    1. if the CA are so pro health testing why dont they make it a requirment of membership to their group.
      I know loads of people on their facebook page who do no health check whatsoever, no vaccinations and dont have their puppies checked over before sale.
      So they dont know the dog has a problem until it drops dead and by then they've already bred from it

      Delete
    2. "Checking all breeds of course you need to get rid of the limitation of what to check for as that is unworkable. Single check list for all. Don't see the CA wanting this though, do you?"
      The CA have said that this would be preferable to checks for just some breeds. All or none - that's fair, and transparency and fairness are what's wanted. The anger is at the singling out of some breeds and that the checks conducted differently to how they were described in advance.

      The show scene has always changed and evolved, just like the dogs (and the people!), so if BoB vet checks are introduced, then that's just another change.But make it for all breeds, not just some. The hypocrisy that one BoB is denied group entry for having a condition demonstrated by other breeds shows the unfairness of the current situation. If the checks had been for all breeds then the eventual RBiS would not have won its group because it, too, would have been denied entry.

      Delete
    3. Mary Apr 2, 2012 12:12 AM said:

      The anger is at the singling out of some breeds...

      Surely that anger should be directed at the Council of Europe? It’s their Convention that’s singled out breeds at risk of extinction because of health and exaggeration issues prevalent in those breeds - emphasis on prevalent in those breeds. How do vet checks for all BOB help those breeds exactly? It’s a pity the CA can’t see the situation through the eyes of the outside world – they’d see a completely different picture.

      Delete
    4. Anonymous Apr 2, 2012 04:23 AM

      It's nothing to do with the Council of Europe. It's to do with whether or not you agree that a haw-eyed dog of one breed is suffering and yet a haw-eyed dog of another breed is perfectly all right. If you think that's fair, then good for you. If you think that's hypocritical, then you understand the CA a little better.

      Delete
    5. “It's to do with whether or not you agree that a haw-eyed dog of one breed is suffering and yet a haw-eyed dog of another breed is perfectly all right. If you think that's fair, then good for you. If you think that's hypocritical, then you understand the CA a little better.”

      It is not alright for any breed to have eye problems. But without the checks, neither dog would have been picked up.

      It is good that attention has been brought to the other breed with haw, because they too can now be added to the list.

      I am surprised that this suggestion was not proposed in the presentation.

      This is about helping dogs as a first priority. Making things fair for exhibitors is a good idea, but it is not the key objective here.

      Carrying out checks for clinical symptoms arising from exaggerated conformation on dogs known to have no exaggerations is a pointless waste of money and time.

      Making a start on breeds with known issues makes perfect sense to most of us.

      Delete
    6. "the other bred with haw"??? there are MANY breeds with haw.. funny thing there are many non pedigreed dogs with haw as well.

      Delete
    7. "the other bred with haw"??? there are MANY breeds with haw..

      Indeed, but we were discussing two specific breeds. And non pedigree dogs are not entered into dog shows which are intended to measure a dog against a perfect standard as role models for the rest of us.

      Delete
  30. just been watching the videos of the meetings of CA , wont be joining anytime soon !

    Their idea of a dog MOT isnt a bad one as ideas go BUT it must be carried out by INDEPENDENT Vets otherwise the whole idea is flawed. Vets may not want to lose the income from big kennels and may just shall we say be not quite as thorough or may be "persuaded" that the red eyes are just the sun...or the wind..or maybe the full moon always affects this breed ! !!!
    Come on lets face it show dogs get operations that would make them ineligible to show ..testicles are stitched down, tails are straightened, ears are fixed so having their own Vet or a Vet of their choice doing the exam is far from acceptable.

    And im not having a go at Vets here as most would certainly not entertain these practices....but as the CA say in their mission statement it must be fair for all...therefore independant Vet exams are crucial

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  31. "Single check list for all. Don't see the CA wanting this though, do you?2


    ..actually yes ..that IS what they want ...and by all means make changes to breed standards if required but apply it to all breeds with the same physiology and give breeders time to breed in those changes - how is that putting our heads in the sand, resisting change or being against health checks ?


    ...but you know, I've had another thought ....if most or all of the BOB's in the 15 HP breeds continue to pass their health checks then are the Kc going to drop them from the list ? ......I wonder what Jemima would have to write about when these checks proves that show dogs are in fact healthy examples of their breeds across the board.....

    Perhaps - with a bit of tweaking - we should simply 'play the game ' after all !!

    Personally I'd like the Kc to lead the way in proving it is truly serious about health by refusing to register pups from unhealth tested parents ...you know - that thing the CA is actually calling for - health testing for all !!

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    1. bijou...I wasn't at the meeting but I did sit through the whole video. If the CA don't want diffrent treatment for different breeds why the reaction of laughter and horror when the Bassett exhibitor revealed the shocking news that her dog was vet checked "as a dog" rather than as a Bassett??
      You see you really can't have it both ways. If you're calling for vet-checks applied to all breeds with a single set of health standards that's one thing. There is also an argument for saying some breeds are so compromised they must be allowed some leeway while the breeders respond to new standards; that's another position. You can't call for both at the same time. You either treat all breeds the same or you don't- the CA needs to make up its mind on that one.
      Kevin Colwill

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  32. I STRONGLY SUSPECT THAT THE CA IS MAINLY ABOUT ORCHESTRATING RESISTANCE TO INSPECTION AND CHANGE AND LITTLE ELSE. PEOPLE WITH GENETICALY DEFECTIVE BREEDS PROBABLY KNOW THEY ARE DRINKING IN THE LAST CHANCE SALOON. I FEEL SORRY FOR INNOCENT FAMILIES BEING OFFERED THESE CANINE 'TIME BOMBS' WITH HEARTBREAK AND GREAT EXPENSE TO FOLLOW. THESE BREEDS NEED TO BE PLACED ON A SEPARATE REGISTER AND INSTEAD OF BEING CONSIGNED TO THE DUSTBIN OF HISTORY WHY NOT FORM AN ORGANISATION DEVOTED TO SAVING THOSE BREEDS WQHICH CAN BE SAVED

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    1. The saddest thing is they don't recognise that many of their breeding practices and lack of health checks are no better than a puppy farmer or back yard breeder. They don't realise that many of us DID do our research and buy responsibly, putting trust in professional breeders and STILL ended up no better than if we had bought a dog on Gumtree.

      It is this denial that shows how truly blind they are being :(

      Truly good breeders are a minority and this "snobbery" that involvement in the show world makes you any better than a back yard breeder is ludicrous. If you're not health checking well beyond the recommendations and breeding out extreme conformation that causes health issues then you are still causing the same heartache that puppy farmers and BYBs cause.

      If you are doing multiple health checks , breeding out extreme conformation and following up on progeny and providing a 0-8 weeks socialising programme then please feel free to shout about BYB and puppy farmers. If not I think it's time they took a look closer to home......

      Delete
    2. I reckon I could have a shout then!!!

      Delete
  33. And im not having a go at Vets here as most would certainly not entertain these practices....but as the CA say in their mission statement it must be fair for all...therefore independant Vet exams are crucial.

    But Jan....you ARE having a go at Vets!! Are you really suggesting that a vet would put his signature on a form if he really thought a dog was suffering?? My vet health checks my puppies before they go to their new homes. I would be horrified if I thought he was saying that they were healthy just to keep me on his books!!! That's outrageous! I trust him implicitly! If, as was suggested, there was an "MOT" performed by the owners own vet he/she would have the benefit of knowing this dog almost from birth. He would have vaccinated it, checked it for defects at a very young age and would know it's case history. Surely he would be the best person for the job!!

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    1. Just as with any other profession their will be some vets who put commercial gain over ethics. I believe they are a minority, but there is no point denying they exist.

      If giving a 'negative' check on a client's dog might make that client go elsewhere, or make that client 'bad mouth' the vet to other clients then even the very ethical vets will be put in a difficult position, after-all they do have a living to earn.

      Additionally the vet may feel pressured by the client or scared of damaging a previously good vet-owner relationship.

      I believe for the benefit of the vets and the owners of the dogs being examined that it should be carried out by a vet with no direct prior knowledge of that dog.
      If the examining vet wanted to check on records relating to old injuries etc I am sure that (with owner consent) the dogs' regular vet would release that to the independent vet on a phonecall.

      Delete
    2. Honestly im not having a go at Vets, but if the checks are not independant then it clouds the issue...and it will be an issue that cant afford any question marks however unfounded.
      What you said about knowing the dog from birth is exactly what i mean...the dog must be looked at on its condition when presented for the exam, it cant be passed on prior knowledge, its vaccination history etc has no bearing on what the Vet should be looking for.
      Sorry but Vets are human like the rest of us, they should not be put in the position where they have to make a decision on a border-line case. Im NOT suggesting they would sign off a dog that was obviously health compromised but its not always that simple.
      Plus its about being 100% transparent with no possible avenues for questionable results
      If the Vets have no prior contact with the dog there can be NO questions asked however unfounded they may be
      Why give an opportunity for muddy waters when its not necessary

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    3. The Kennel Club should pursue the wider public interest not bend over backwards to placate breeders who knew what they were doing was unsustainable and plain wrong. All breeds which are generally acknowledged to be genetically unfit for purpose through being deeply affected by harmful genes should have their recognition removed. There are plenty of healthy alternatives. Just consider the harm done by these breeders in terms of pain, heartbreak, disapointment and great medical expense.

      Delete
    4. Please see the bigger picture; the hobby is being discredited by supporting breeds with harmful genes bringing unhappiness to the puppy buyers and pain to the animals affected by the various medical conditions. I say there are plenty of healthy alternatives so withdraw recognition from breeds deeply affected by harmful genes. The KC should pursue the wider public interest is what I'm saying.

      Delete
  34. When the health aspects of judging criteria is spelled out so clearly here http://www.fitforfunction.org.uk/content.asp?contentId=3 by the Kennel Club (and judges received their DVD) , there really should be no need for vet checks, if judges simply co-operate with the criteria ;

    "prizes should never be awarded to dogs which are visibly suffering from any condition which would adversely affect their health or welfare. For example:

    Obvious breathing difficulty

    Significantly over or under weight dogs

    Lameness, including hopping

    A discharge from one or both eyes or any signs of discomfort in either eye

    Obvious skin disorder or ear irritation

    Inappropriate temperament - refusal to be handled, timidity or aggression

    Exaggerations that would make the dog unsuited for fulfilling its original purpose"

    So why then are the Canine Alliance hopping mad at The Kennel Club 'biased' vet checks? Why are they not furious at the judge who selected the dog that was showing lameness and was selected as BOB? It wasn't the only the lack of vet-checks for a non-HPB breed that let this dog throught, it was THE JUDGES!

    I ask again WHY are the Canine Alliance not furious at the judge who selected that dog? The Kennel Club shouldn't need to roll out the vet checks to include all breeds if judges would simply DO THEIR JOB or GET OUT of judging and make room for professionals who can understand and apply basic instructions.

    Seems to me the CA are targeting their frustration at the wrong people. Nice diversionary tactic though to draw blame away from themselves ;-)

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    Replies
    1. They are annoyed because they were caught out. You'll hear about a torch was used, about the length of time it took in comparison to the amount of time a judge has etc. Still 9 out of the 15 breeds passed. You hear about the bulldog, the basset and the cumber all being "cleared" by other people. Don't hear anything about the others who failed though which is quite telling. Would love the CA to bepushing for the vet reports to be released for those dogs that failed but that's up to the owners. Strange how even those who had vets "clear" them haven't released them to support the claim it was unfair.

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  35. So the CA are pro health testing and vet checks done fairly?

    As we know there are some breeds on the HPB list that have no compulsory health tests (pug and peke spring to mind). I'm guessing the reason for this is that many of their health issues are purely caused by conformation alone, but sadly they cannot fail a veterinary check purely on having no nose (for example).

    When looking at the KC's veterinary check list for the vet examinations eyes, lameness, respiration and skin are the main points of concern.

    http://www.thekennelclub.org.uk/download/12613/Veterinary-Inspections-15-High-Profile-Breeds.pdf

    If they are pro health testing and vet checks for all breeds then lets do this properly and get all dogs entering a show to have been hip scored, patella checked, eye tested, heart tested, lung function tested and relevant DNA tested. These results can be presented to the judge/vet to see for themselves (including adnexal problems on the eye cert which could fail the dog).

    Whilst we are at it lets make the vet check at shows more professional and throw in a stethoscope and opthalmoscope.

    After all, those in the CA are the ones saying their dogs are all healthy, health tested, etc etc unlike the byb's who are to blame for the demise of pedigree dogs.

    Well prove it. Prove your dogs are healthy internally as they pleasing to you externally.

    Somehow I think the the above was put in place there would be a lot less dogs entering shows.

    Ironically proper proof of health is what many campaigners or activists as you like to call them (I prefer the term dog lovers) have been calling for, for a long time now.

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    Replies
    1. Unfortunately health tests are often age related. Therefore it wouldn't work. Health tests are a useful tool but not the be all and end all some people make them out to be.

      What the CA should be doing is defining what the purpose of the vet checks is as I don't think people agree on that all the time so everyone is working on the same assumptions. They should also be pushing for changes to the breed standards. Neither of which I think they are doing.

      Delete
    2. "lets do this properly and get all dogs entering a show to have been hip scored, patella checked, eye tested, heart tested, lung function tested and relevant DNA tested."

      That's similar to saying that every entrant in the London marathon should have a full medical, including ECG, eye examination and DNA tests before competing. After all they're more likely to be passing on their genes than many of the dogs that get shown!

      Delete
    3. What, like the Crufts BIS winners?

      To look at a few.......

      1980....Flatcoat......sired 252 puppies
      1984.....Llasa Apso......267 puppies
      1985.....Standard Poodle.....547 puppies
      1999.....Irish Setter......623 puppies
      2001.....Basenji......41 puppies
      2010....Hungarian Viszla......525 puppies

      You cannot compare human and dog breeding.

      Delete
  36. "You either treat all breeds the same or you don't- the CA needs to make up its mind on that one."


    ..and so does the Kc ...either ALL breeds with haw showing are disqualified from further competition or none are - if the Kc and the BVA are now saying that haw is a disqualifying fault then presumably they will no longer accept entry money from exhibitors of those breeds or allow champions to be made up in affected breeds - is it not completely nonsensical for the Kc to continue to issue CC's stating that haw affected dogs are 'clearly of champion quality when they are subsequently automatically disqualified on health grounds ?

    and is it not equally nonsensical for them to continue to have phrases such as 'lozenge shaped eye ' and ' Acceptable to have some haw showing' written into their breed standards when vets then penalise breeders for producing dogs with these features ? - THAT's what was meant by the vets not taking into account presently allowable breed traits - it's this lack of joined up thinking and the lack of communication between the Kc. the BVA and breeders/exhibitors that is at the heart of the storm.

    Logically breed standards need to change to reflect the fact that ONLY a tight eye is acceptable - and breeders given time to breed towards those changes and to be quite honest the Kc should refund the entry money , travel expenses etc from exhibitors in all breeds where haw is written into their breed standard ...they cannot run with the hare and hunt with the hounds on this - if a breed has traits which inherently make it unhealthy then the Kc should STOP making money out of exhibitors in the full knowledge that they cannot compete on a level playing field with other breeds - and refuse their entries ...


    either that or listen to the CA and stop health checking until breeders have had the time to breed to the new standards - they cannot in all fairness do both !!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Breed standards are written by the breed clubs, not by the Kennel Club. The KC have only rubber stamped them. So breeders are now blaming the KC for everything again rather than looking at themselves.

      It's not haw showing is it. Why don't the CA push for the vet reports to be released by their owners? Do they show the failure due to haw or due to other eye conditions? Haw may not be the cause but certainly doesn't help.

      Delete
    2. Regardless of "breed standard' the judging criteria for ALL dogs is clear;

      http://www.fitforfunction.org.uk/content.asp?contentId=3 ....., there really should be no need for vet checks, if judges simply co-operate with the criteria ;

      "prizes should never be awarded to dogs which are visibly suffering from any condition which would adversely affect their health or welfare. For example:

      Obvious breathing difficulty

      Significantly over or under weight dogs

      Lameness, including hopping

      A discharge from one or both eyes or any signs of discomfort in either eye

      Obvious skin disorder or ear irritation

      Inappropriate temperament - refusal to be handled, timidity or aggression

      Exaggerations that would make the dog unsuited for fulfilling its original purpose"


      That's a non-discriminatory set of criteria, wo why can't the judges just apply it??

      Delete
  37. I found this which someone had posted on the CA Facebook page which they say comes from a Stafford Forum - I think it is very eloquent and really ought to make the CA sit up an listen to what the outside world is thinking.

    "I think people just get shirty because they have been so used to things their way for a long time and don't like a change of tide. So this lady breeds healthier bassets, compared to what? Every dog should be healthy. My friend has just had her bassett put to sleep apart from his legs and backend failing (and her other bassett is going a similar way) he had health issues as long as my arm. Forget Crufts and the like it's families like this that buy a dog with good intentions but not much knowledge that end up on the bitter end of breeding a dog for extremities for long periods of time until they are accepted as the "norm" when in all reality they are alien to anything that would be produced naturally. This couple have two young children and basically, like most of the general population, saw something they liked and bought it. You can argue it was up to them to research but I argue it is up to breeders to breed healthy animals free from any degenerative issues. My friend keeps saying how young my girls look (her boy was 4) and how lucky I am. Well as a breed I do think we are fairly lucky when I see what others put up with. So like I said the showing is just one side, a small side, for every litter where one dog is shown six or seven are not and go to family homes where this can happen. It devastated me but not as much as those children or his owners. It's just very sad. Until people open their eyes and admit there is a problem unfortunately not much will be done. What you witnessed earlier is people raging because they have been limited in what they can do. Until people who breed such extreme animals can see they are just that everybody is fighting a loosing battle. While I think recent events may have an impact I am not sure it will be for right reasons..."

    ReplyDelete
  38. "but I argue it is up to breeders to breed healthy animals free from any degenerative issues."


    ..what ANY degenerative issues - we cannot do this with our own species - what makes you think it's remotely possible to do this with dogs ?


    Katie said :
    "lets do this properly and get all dogs entering a show to have been hip scored, patella checked, eye tested, heart tested, lung function tested and relevant DNA tested. These results can be presented to the judge/vet to see for themselves (including adnexal problems on the eye cert which could fail the dog)."


    why ???? ....surely only dogs used for breeding need to undergo all these tests - no matter how many shows a dog wins if he's never bred from then he'll have zero impact on his breed !! - I completely support testing for any dog that's passing his genes on ( as does the CA and the KC )and I think you'll find that it's overwhelmingly the show world that DOES test before breeding - but I don't understand why it needs to be a requirement simply to enter a show -and why stop there - why not also insist on testing before entering agility/obedience competitions - or before attending Field trials or taking part in Shutzhund ?

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    1. Annie Macfarlane3 April 2012 15:59

      Bijou, are show dogs not considered to be the best of the best in relation to their breed....and are the dogs that should/will be used for breeding? It makes sense to ensure that a dog winning top honours in the show ring is as healthy on the inside as it's beautiful on the outside! Would you not agree? After all, we are always hearing that a person who doesn't show their dog is no more than a back yard breeder!

      I am hesitant to say that health tests are the cure for all and that having good health test results means the dog is healthy.....IMO there is more to it than that...and the last thing we need is to be relying completely on health tests and nothing else before breeding. That said, certainly the high profile breeds should have basic health tests put in place. How can a breed become healthier if there's nothing to "measure" health against? It's simply shocking that dogs with terrible health issues require no screening before being bred.....

      And I never "liked" the CA facebook page....but I am entitled to comment on an organisation's ethos....just like everybody else.

      Delete
    2. But dogs have genetic and conformation related health issues om a far waster scale than humans.
      You have to search far to find a human subpopulation with as little genetic variation as the average show dog breed.
      Breeding for unhealthy conformation in small isolated populations has put many breeds on the brink of ruin where not all genetic tests in the world will make a differense.

      Delete
    3. Annie MacFarlane: "Bijou, are show dogs not considered to be the best of the best in relation to their breed....and are the dogs that should/will be used for breeding? "

      Show dogs are pedigree dogs which get shown. They're not necessarily 'the best' - most owners show them to get a few unbiased assessments of their dogs' merits, because naturally everyone thinks their own dog is wonderful! However people who intend to breed from their animals often wear rose-tinted specs; judges don't! If a dog is consistently well-placed in the show ring by several different judges it can be assumed to be a good example of its breed. If however it's repeatedly unplaced, or consistently placed last in small classes, then probably its genes shouldn't be passed on.

      So you can see that not all dogs being shown - even at Crufts (the only show where qualification is needed to even enter) - will be 'the best'. in numerically smaller breeds it's possible to qualify for Crufts simply by entering the right class at another show and turning up!

      And of course people enter shows for a good day out with their dogs amongst like-minded people - it's not all about breeding, because people show neutered bitches and dogs as well as entire ones, which they often have no intention of breeding from anyway.

      Delete
    4. Annie Macfarlane6 April 2012 19:14

      I agree with you Mary. I own a numerically small breed....a rare breed....and you only have to achieve a 1st to 3rd in a Championship Show to qualify for Crufts. My girl has qualified twice! The sad fact that dogs are continually being placed because they are judged by the person on the end of the lead, rather than the dog itself. If a professional handler is frequently seen in the Group Ring...then the judge automatically thinks they are showing a good dog! I've seen this happen in my breed...when the dog was far from a nice example of the breed. I'm sure he's very sweet...but did not merit the accolade of Top Dog for that year! Mostly it's the "all-rounder" judges that will look at the end of the leash because they don't know the finer points of a breed...so tend to stick with a safe bet...a face they know often handles nice dogs! You find that these handlers don't often put the dog under a breed specialist because they know they won't get anywhere with judges that know the breed....well my breed anyway!

      The whole idea of dog showing though is generally to exhibit the best of the breed...but we know that's not always the case. I have yet to meet anybody who is constantly knocked out...who continues to show. It's an expensive hobby so it's just not worth it.

      There are some lovely people that show their dogs...but you wouldn't buy a dog from a puppy farmer and show it....because you know that no thought has gone into the breeding and, generally speaking, they won't be good examples of the breed. That's where the social responsibility of professional handlers comes into play. They should only be handling the best dogs....not taking any dog on and making it a champion or top dog in the breed.

      Delete
  39. Believe me the CA are going to have to do a LOT better than that if they want to be taken seriously by many of the people IN the show world. There are lots of people showing their dogs who are just as appalled by some of the health issues in certain breeds, who want things to change and are actually not unhappy about the testing that took place. You only need to look at the numbers who have joined the CA as compared to the number of exhibitors at Crufts.

    ReplyDelete
  40. Show dogs are simply dogs that are entered into dog shows - they are no more automatically 'the best of the best' than dogs entered in Field trials are 'the best ' - both competitions are ways of assessing the relative quality of your dog and heaven help us if simply entering means your dog is good enough to be bred from !!- - there are many many people who show their dogs as simply a fun day out and they have no intention of breeding.



    "we are always hearing that a person who doesn't show their dog is no more than a back yard breeder! "

    Personally I do think it a mark of a good breeder to assess your dogs against others in order to get an objective idea of their relative quality and therefore if they are of sufficient merit to be bred from- but it most certainly does'nt have to be in the show ring - BYB's never subject their dogs to outside scrutiny in this way - if it can produce pups it's of good enough quality !!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. What is BOB an abbreviation for again ?

      Delete
    2. LOL good point. Well made ;)

      Delete
    3. bijou... Come on, you didn’t really expect to get away with that one did you? If we take your definition at face value a crossbreed entered into the waggiest tail class in a companion show would be a “show dog”.
      Down at open show level competition is often more about a social day out than anything else but we both know it’s not like that at the top end of showing. The dogs that win big are bred for the purpose of winning dog shows. They are presented as the very best examples of their breed and I have honestly never heard a show breeder put caveats on their dogs to the effect that the best dog in show terms may not be the best dog in the ordinary understanding of the term.
      Kevin Colwill aka Convict225

      Delete
  41. I find it funny that many of the people on here who were a few weeks ago saying that Fiona the LUA dals owners should stop moaning because they "knew the rules", are the same people now moaning because the KC have done something they don't agree with. Did they not know the rules before entering? Yes they did as the KC announced the introduction of the vet checks some months beforehand. Oh, the irony.

    ReplyDelete
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    1. "Did they not know the rules before entering? "
      Yes - or rather, they believed the rules they were told. The rules they were told were that the vet would not be allowed to use any methods to check the dogs that the judge was not able to use - that meant no extra lighting, no medical instruments etc. These rules were not adhered to by the KC.

      Delete
    2. That is a fair point put forward by the CA.

      But, now the CA are accusing the KC of victimising 15 breeds, unfairly singling them out with no evidence as to why these 15 breeds are high profile anyway.

      Can I ask.....why now?
      Where were the CA members of ALL breeds individually protesting against this victimisation and singling out of these individual breeds for the last year or two? It is not as if the list came out on March the 7th 2012.

      Delete
    3. “The rules they were told were that the vet would not be allowed to use any methods to check the dogs that the judge was not able to use - that meant no extra lighting, no medical instruments etc.”

      This comes up again and again. And it is being perpetuated because the CA is not making the purpose of the checks clear to its members. The checks were to identify “clinical problems arising from exaggerations in conformation”.

      This is what Steve Dean has stated. Yet I see little sign that this has been widely understood, with constant references to all manner of other health tests muddying the waters.

      Surely the only thing that is relevant here is that these clinical problems must be detected. The checks were not invented to benefit breeders or exhibitors, they were designed to help dogs.

      It was presumably hoped/expected that an effective check in this respect would not require instruments. The exhibitors were clearly given some information as to what to expect. Which seems fair. But presumably these were guidelines rather than ‘rules’.

      If they were set down as specific ‘rules’ does anyone have a link that we can look at?

      In the end it turned out that a vet did need a light to check thoroughly.

      Would exhibitors rather that the vet had missed the problem? Would they have preferred that the problem went undetected?

      I do think that these kinds of complaints simply are simply bewildering to the wider public, and do not help the CAs cause.

      Pippa

      Delete
    4. Pippa, it´s like this. First there was somebody on the Exhibitors Choice and Voice saying they had heard a rumour that the two vets at Cruft´s had been paid £1 000 a day - and that of course meant they were just mercenary. Then somebody said No, it´s not like that, they were volunteers and were paid nothing - and that of course meant they were pedigree-haters jumping at the chance to fail excellent dogs.
      As somebody pointed out, a small pen torch is not a medical instrument - it´s a means of providing adequate light. Now, if the vets had NOT used that, I´m certain they would have been accused of pronouncing judgement on excellent dogs they couldn´t even see, and berated right left and centre for not even having the wits to use a pen torch. And as they actually did use it - for the very obvious reason that everybody can see, any vet and any doctor and any laymen can diagnose obvious ectropion even in poor light, BUT YOU MAY NEED GOOD LIGHT TO BE ABLE TO MEASURE THE DEGREE OF IRRITATION OF THE CORNEA which is the fact that the whole stupid argumentation is trying to get away from! - excuse me, ladies, now that the vets did use that torch pen, well, they are in breach of previous agreement.
      Of course. The only outcome which would have been accepted is qualified vets nodding and smiling at whatever.
      Have you any idea at all how you look to the rest of the world, Exhibitors´Noise?

      Delete
  42. I show and welcome the vet checks on my breed and wish every breed was subject to exactly the same check. I health test my dogs and do not breed if any tests are failed. All puppies sold are vet checked and vaccinated. I keep in touch with puppy buyers and they keep in touch with me.I do not get complaints from them and I am lucky in that I have found lovely homes for them. I will always take my puppies back if owners find they can no longer keep them. I am a reponsible breeder who loves dogs.I am not alone!!! There are many good people out there who want the best for dogs and from many of the posts I have read on the CA fb pages a lot of them are among the members. Give them a chance! There are many organisations trying and this is another one who will try to improve things for pedigree dogs. Jemima's had a few years trying, look again at the CA in a few years and then judge them.

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    1. I'm judging the CA on their actions to suspend vet checks. I'm judging them on the FACT they are targeting the vet checks because judges -like those on their committee- have FAILED to follow the clear criteria laid out by the KC regarding how health should be judged. If the judges did their job properly there would be no vet checks and I guarantee there would be no CA.

      Until the vet checks they didn't care enough about puppy farms etc to do anything about it (and it appears cet checks are still more importand than that). Yet a few vet checks put a fire under them and they went off like a rocket.

      I say again and I will keep saying WHY ARE THE CANINE ALLIANCE NOT TARGETING THE JUDGES WHO CREATED A NEED FOR VET CHECKS?!

      WHY ARE THEY NOT FURIOUS AT THOSE WITHIN THEIR RANKS WHO HAVE HAD YEARS TO PREVENT VET-CHECKS BEING NECESSARY?

      I'll tell you why. Because they believe they know better than geneticists, than vets, than owners will confirmation-health affected pets. They believe their own hype to avoid FACING THE TRUTH.

      THE KC JUDGING CRITERIA IS NON-DISCRIMINATORY. IT DOES NOT TARGET 15 HPB. JUDGES DO YOUR JOB AND THE CET CHECKS WILL GO AWAY. SIMPLES.

      Delete
    2. It is not the CA who appoint the judges, it is not the CA who were tasked with watching the judging of the High Profile Breeds, it is not the CA who put in place vet checks that are not in line with the training given to the judges regarding excesses of conformation, it is the Kennel Club who did that. The HPBs are subject to two reports (2010 & 2011) by the KC, these are watched breeds who were only observed by KC observers once per quarter over that two year period. Similarly it was the KC who amended the Breed Watch requirements afer Crufts i.e. 23/3/12 and still have in the amendments requirements that neither a judge or vet can accurately assess on a physical examination e.g. an incomlpete blink for pugs and pekes.The KC also expect certain breeds to change overnight e.g.comformational defects of the upper and lower eyelid e.g Bassets and Bloodhounds.
      Exhibitors have always had the right of vito of certain judgees who they consider do not judge to the Breed Standard in that they can avoid entering their dogs under those judges and many do exercise that option. In my view the KC have it in their power not to appoint any judges or not confirm judging appointments for shows other than their own Crufts show and have not exercised that right knowing that there have been inconsistancies in judging. As the governing body for all shows that is the least one would expect, but this is not the case.For their most prestigious show and their most highly regarded judges, they allowed a situation to play out prompting this overwhelming response from exhibitors and judges.
      If what comes out of this is a better system for judging and vet checking our pedigree show dogs, what is so bad about that? If in the short time since Crufts the perception of all show breeders has been awakened to the further improvement of the 15 HPBs and all other pedigree dogs, then the CA has already been a success. Like many problems relating to health issues, it is not a straightforward problem or solution, it is many faceted and will take many improvements in many areas to see a marked change. Whatever anyone thinks of PDE 1 and 2, it has been a catalist for change and so has vet health checks at Championship dog shows. On a personal note as an owner, exhibitor and breeder of pugs, I welcome the opportunity to prove the health of my dogs and have no problem with the vet checks. I do however want a level playing field and believe that the system in place should be for all breeds who exhibit the characteristics that the HPBs are being health tested for e.g.entropion,ectropion, limping,lameness,breathing,weight,skin lesions etc. I am fully award that the vet checks are hear to stay and for my breed I support vet checks and hope that very quiclky we can demonstrate that pugs are healthy dogs and can be removed from the watch list.

      Delete
  43. "The dogs that win big are bred for the purpose of winning dog shows. They are presented as the very best examples of their breed and I have honestly never heard a show breeder put caveats on their dogs to the effect that the best dog in show terms may not be the best dog in the ordinary understanding of the term."

    Kevin - if the dogs 'win big' then they WILL probably be the very best of their breed in regard to their breed standard ( allowing for dodgy judging of course !! ) - the ones that don't win are just as equally show dogs but only a fool could describe them all as 'the best'

    I'm puzzled what you mean by " the best dog in the ordinary understanding of the word " - the best worker ? - the best companion ? - the best producer ? - the longest lived ? - the most obedient ? - the most sociable - the best guard dog ? - it's all subjective -ask someone who does Shutzhund and someone who does Field trials and their opinion of 'the best dog' will be very different - the show ring is used to measure one kind of excellence -other competitions measure other kinds - if proof of good health is to be a requisite for one kind of assessment then surely it should also be a a requirement for all the other ways of measuring 'the best of the best ' ?

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    1. bijou... your points only make sense if you confuse the effects of breeding dogs for a particular activity and the effects on the dogs of actually taking part in that activity.
      Take agility for example; I don’t know any trait or physical quality valued in agility dogs that can lead to them living less healthy, less happy lives. I am aware that a lot of top agility dogs have joint problems by middle age but that’s about overworking/overtraining rather than the dogs breeding.
      If you’re saying vet checks in hard physical activities like agility would be a good idea to prevent competitors overworking their dogs...fair enough. Showing, however, remains unique in that some judges of some breeds have actively rewarded traits that lead to health and welfare issues in the dogs.
      That's the point you always avoid. Showing has compromised not just the health and welfare of individual dogs but the health and welfare of whole breeds.

      Delete
    2. "Showing, however, remains unique in that some judges of some breeds have actively rewarded traits that lead to health and welfare issues in the dogs. "

      No it is'nt - what about those breeding working dogs with such high drives that they cannot live within the average family home - rescues are NOT full of show bred dogs but have more than their fair share of frustrated hyped up working bred Springers and Collies - in my own breed ( BSD ) the working Malinois breeders are producing dogs that are a frankly a liability unless they are very carefully placed in working homes - in fact there are some working Malinois owners who talk of culling working bred pups if the right homes cannot be found - breeding mental extremes into a breed is JUST as wrong as breeding physical ones ...

      Delete
  44. Pippa

    From the Kennel club - written in 2011:

    “Sadly though, a few judges in some breeds simply can’t or won’t accept the need to eliminate from top awards, dogs which are visibly unhealthy. Neither we who show dogs, nor the Kennel Club which must protect our hobby, can reasonably allow that state of affairs to continue. I hope also that monitoring the results of this exercise may even, in time, enable us to drop from the ‘high profile’ list some of those breeds which prove to have a clean bill of health."

    "By giving dog exhibitors and judges 12 months notice of the intent to have a veterinary surgeon examine the Best of Breed from each of the high profile breeds, we hope that judges will ensure that only healthy exhibits will come forward. "

    So...the whole objective of the health checks was to ensure that JUDGES did not miss visible signs of ill health - judges have 2 minutes per dog and are unable to use any aids - therefore we were led to believe that the vet checks would replicate the same conditions - otherwise how can the vet checks meet their objective of preventing judges from missing easily visible problems ?

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    1. So the visibly lame dog that won BOB that everyone in CA was protesting about, the judge didn't have enought time to notice that?

      Sorry but I don't buy it. If the judges wanted to they can extend the time it takes to judge a dog. The vet checks were a fair consequence of judges failure to follow simple instructions relating to health.

      Delete
    2. Hi Bijou, thanks for that info.

      But I don’t interpret it in the same way as you do. To me the KC are simply saying,

      “you have twelve months to put your house in order and stop placing dogs in high profile breeds that have conformational exaggerations. And if at the end of that twelve months you continue to place dogs that are exaggerated to the detriment of the dog, you risk having your judges decision overruled by a veterinary surgeon”

      In fact the KC’s first sentence says it all

      “Sadly though, a few judges in some breeds simply can’t or won’t accept the need to eliminate from top awards, dogs which are visibly unhealthy”

      And I think it bears repeating - is it not better that dogs with problems are detected at this point, by whatever means, rather than allowed to go any further?
      I do appreciate that this is tough on the exhibitors, and to a certain extent on the judges who are doing what they have always done. Change doesn’t come easy.

      But this is not for them. It is for the dogs.

      Delete
    3. Bijou, I'm confused as to why you consider a flash light a medical aid? It's simply a lighting device, that might be necessary in some light conditions and unnecessary in others. Do you think the general public considers a flashlight "special equipment"? And if a dog has signs of a visible problem that can be seen in the light but not in the dark, will you next complain about the wattage of the light bulbs?

      Delete
    4. The KC has responded to this:
      "...The process of the veterinary checks has been developed fully over two years and was first announced well over a year ago. It was agreed from the beginning that no specialist instruments would be used. However it was accepted that the amount of light available to the veterinary surgeon may be less than that available to the judge under the lights in the ring and therefore the use of a pen torch was considered reasonable. The Chairman has repeatedly made this point publicly at the briefing meetings during 2011. The process was conducted in a tactful, sympathetic and diplomatic manner, and whilst the time taken for the examination was longer than that taken by the judge, this included the time taken to take the dog to the veterinary area, explain the process and complete the documentation. We recognise and understand that the six exhibitors that did not have their BOB award confirmed at Crufts will have been greatly disappointed; however we are satisfied that the agreed protocol was followed in all cases and all the decisions were justified. A pen torch was in fact only used until the lighting in the veterinary areas was improved. Use of the pen torch has now been suspended and a requirement has been placed on shows to ensure that the lighting in the veterinary area is as good as that in the rings..."

      Delete
  45. Seems odd to me if the KC were being honest with their press releases failed at Crufts becomes a pass at UKToy would not be possible. The KC are well aware that yet again they have lied to their fee paying users - NOT MEMBERS I hasten to add as it is after all a closed Club with only 1,000 members!

    Simple fact the screening process was sold to exhibitors as a check to ensure Judges did their job correctly, to educate Judges. The use of light in these circumstances therefore gives a vet an unfair aid that a judge does not have when viewing the same dog.

    I agree a lame animal should not have won BOB, however having experienced my own dog winning BOB at champ level, to then have to withdraw him from group because he became lame after stepping on a thistle. I can easily believe said animal was not lame when it won BOB and should have been withdrawn from Group!

    The public are as much to blame as anyone else- if they didn't want these ugly squashed faced animals there would be no market ergo no breeding - lets get down to simple facts here folks.

    Am I going to defend my breeding practises by giving you a huge list of what I do as a 'good' breeder thats not a requirement etc -HELL NO I'm not here to 'prove' I'm innocent of any doggie genocide however I will defend my right to enjoy my hobby and animals for as long as I am able.

    Jenny

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    1. If the CA keep up their unprofessional vitriol the end of your hobby may come sooner than you think!

      If the KC had wanted to design a machine to turn public opinion firmly against showing, they would have failed to design something so efficient as Mike Gadsby & Andrew Brace's rhetoric. The unprofessional manner of communication, the pompous vocabulary ("historical" indeed pffft). Add to that Dianna Spavin's very public & childish responses, you have the perfect recipe to make show-breeders seem like extremists & make every good breeder & pet owner angry at the sheer arrogance of these people who dare to suggest they are "responsible for pedigree dogs". "Patrially responsible for the demise of pedigree dogs & the death of showing" would be more apt in my opinion.

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    2. Jenny get you fact right the KC has 1,300 members, 400 Associates, 740 Affiliates, 680 Members of the Young KC, so far = 3120 add in all the 1,868 breed clubs and show, training and working societies all can vote for the regional councils say each one just has 100 members so total number of possible people who pay some kind of fee and are represented by or have a vote on KC election are NINETEEN THOUSAND PEOPLE.

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    3. I think you should get your facts right! Only the 1300 actual members are allowed to attend TKC AGM and have a vote I think all the others get a free copy of the kennel gazette!!

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  46. "The public are as much to blame as anyone else- if they didn't want these ugly squashed faced animals there would be no market ergo no breeding - lets get down to simple facts here folks."

    Are you really saying that if the public didn't want the dogs that are winning in the show ring that show breeders would stop breeding them (give up their hobby)?

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    1. I would say that is exactly right. If you look at most of the 15 High profile breeds they are in serious decline. The one exception is the Bulldog which is growing but I do think that Bulldog health has improved in recent years

      Carol

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    2. Dogue de Bordeaux were the 18th highest registered breed at the last count. They are currently in anything but decline.

      Delete
    3. Correlation doesn't prove cause and effect. The decline (I'm assuming registration numbers) in the High Profile breeds may simply be the consequence of these breeds going out of vogue with the buying public and high volume breeders switching to the new in vogue breeds. Actions of high volume breeders will have the biggest impact on registration numbers. This may or may not be indicative of what show breeders are doing; unless you're arguing that show breeders are the high volume breeders and they have switched breeds. If this is the case, can these show breeders really be experts (specifically the genetics) in the breeds they are showing and breeding?

      Delete
  47. Considering all the shrieks of copyright violation that Jemima is subject to, I would like someone from the Canine Alliance to confirm that they have paid a licensing fee to the copyright holder for their commercial use of this photo in their logo:

    http://www.facebook.com/photo.php?fbid=382515771779068&set=a.192035510827096.46771.191709457526368&type=1&ref=nf

    http://www.caninealliance.org/images/proofcaninealliancelogo4web.gif

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Having not looked at this site for a number of weeks I have just trolled through many of the comments. With a few exceptions I do wonder how many of you were at the meeting when the KC informed the high profile breeds how they were to be vetted, were at Crufts and watched the judging and were subsequently at the CA meeting, few I would think. I am a exhibitor/breeder of many many years, owning what I consider to be a very healthy breed, yet after the first PDE program there were many shouting the odds about how unhealthy their dogs were.At one time I thought I had a different breed, given the puppy farming that took place with my breed would loved to have sat down with people and looked at where they had bought their dogs from, could probably have given them the reasons in most cases. With most hobby breeders most of their puppies will go to pet homes so they need to be healthy. The KC have once more let us down with their ABS scheme, there has been a comment that someone recently attended a meeting and there were no puppy farmers on the scheme,and that most only breed every 3 years, joke or April fool. I know of one who had 3 litters in last breed supplement, they come out every quarter by the way, and litters in previous supplements.They have other breeds as well, including designer breeds, another became an ABS having purchased an in whelp bitch from a puppy farm, they have since bred 4 more litters all from underage bitches all with puppy farm pedigrees, they had no previous experience of breeding dogs and are according to the KC rules required to give advice and guidance to the public. These are just 2 of many ABS breeders. Its just easier for them to do this than to target the real route of the problem. Just to add, there are many puppy farmers breeding the high profile breeds by the way,also have a look at the small print at the bottom of the puppy lists, they ask you to purchase from an Assured Breeder but will not give any guarantee for the quality, and in many breeds the health checks are recommended not mandatory which most breed clubs have asked for.
      Then perhaps you will ask yourselves why we who pay their wages have not faith in the KC or their methods of testing at Crufts, its just easier than addressing the real issues

      Delete
    2. Why is it assumed because we comment here that we are not in fact addressing these areas? ABS is a shambles, but there are some simple solutions & teh KC is being advised on those. Two wrongs does not make a right though. ABS not being robust or adequate does not mean it's ok for show-breeders to go without health testing and breed for extreme conformation.

      At the end of the day the Canine Alliance is focused on one area, with lip service being paid to others. Whilst out there are groups who are aware of and working on many of the issues INCLUDING ABS, puppy faming, BYB, compulsory microchipping, pet store sales and the list goes on.

      HOWEVER, it is the show world that a) makes extremes of conformation seem acceptable when they are not. The judges awarding unhealthy dogs is at the very top of a long chain of responsibility for the issues facing our dogs.

      There is a KC 'kennel of the year' awarded breeder near here. Google their name and you get champion this, rosette that. You will find these same people are the ones providing stud dogs to BYB. Happily taking the fee and then bitching about issues caused by BYB in the same day ;-? Most local veterinary surgeons could probably tell you that the vast majority of that breed seen in local surgeries are bought directly from this kennel or have come from one of their studs. They are essentially a puppy farm. NO health checks. NO follow up on puppies. VOLUME breeding (as you say take a look in the bred supplement- most puppy buyers would have no idea about this though). All whilst holding powerful positions in the show world and judging at Crufts. DISGUSTING. These people are protected by others within the show world :(

      Until THIS is dealt with and people can EASILY identify a GOOD breeder then nothing will change. This is why it IS important to keep a focus on the show-world. Puppy farmers are not only outwith the show world they are also firmly WITHIN it. I accept they may be a minority but it is the breed clubs, the judges and maybe even the Canine Alliance, along with the KC who can do something about this.

      BREEDER AND BREED CLUBS need to accept their responsibility to affect change by addressing the ills within their own ranks. You don't even need the KC to do that and you would have a lot more public respect if you did.

      When you've sorted that out please do come back and join us to work against other puppy farms and relevant issues.

      Delete
  48. Oh yawn.. the KC is passe.. dog breeders of pedigreed dogs can do without them easily and hold their own events without them.. they can pick their own judges.. award their own Champs.. and not be bothered by blogs like this one.. gosh what would Jemima and her cohorts do with all of that spare time???
    Wise up pedigreed dog breeders.. do your own thing.. no need for the KC or any "industry" Dog foods, dog magazines, vets etc can sod off picking on you.. and you can breed dogs that you like..what a concept..

    ReplyDelete
  49. In response to coco loco I have been taking in and campaigning against puppy farming for at least 20-25 years if not longer, have closed down several but as fast as you close down one, half a dozen others appear. I have supplied names quantities bred and money made to the KC and the Inland Revenue on many occasions, but the KC say by registering them they are monitoring the situation. I have found major health issues in many of these poor creatures that have never been found in my breed, but the public continue to buy them. Only this morning I picked up a 3 or 4 month puppy who had been dumped, he resembles the breed but is of very poor quality and given where he was picked up from probably of puppy farm desent. As for someone commenting that the breed clubs write the breed standards, yes they do, however on many occasions they are ignored and the KC will change them with little if any consultation at all, even if the clubs give good reasons they are usually ignored. Same with ethics, clubs spend years deciding what is right for a breed, such as not breeding from a bitch before a certain age, then the KC change it and once more bitches hardly more than puppies themselves are being bred from

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    Replies
    1. While the KC should crack down on puppy farms, fact is here in the States there is an "alternate" registry where lots of mill dogs are registered. If people will buy from pet shops and puppy farms, whether or not the pup is KC registered won't stop them. Puppy farms need to be dealt with legislatively, not exclusively through kennel clubs.

      I think the point of Jemima and others is to try to save the show world from itself BEFORE the legislature feels the need to get involved. The idea that it's puppy buyer demand that creates the mess is nonsense, as almost none of the high-risk breeds are sought after as pets.

      Certainly pet people did not say "What I want is a German Shepherd with trembly back legs that looks like a frog." There is very little pet demand for Mastiffs, or Dogues. Pet buyers did not say "I want my hound to be lower and heavier, and more wrinkles please!". The only high-risk breed where the pet public may have had some say is in the pugs, but the pet breeders tend to have less extreme dogs than the show folks.

      As a lover of a dwarf dog, I raise the subject whenever I can because I DON'T want to lose my beloved breed the way so many others were lost before. I don't want Corgis to get ever-lower and ever-heavier to suit some judge's idea. I have seen the tendency to pick out the traits which "define" a dog and breed them to an extreme degree to the point where the poor dog can't function and I want that to just stop happening.

      Anyone who can proudly look at a dog who can't stand without wobbling and say "This is what they are SUPPOSED to do" has something deeply wrong with him.

      Delete
  50. If the KC stopped registering would the puppy farms go away? We know the answer to that is simply "no".
    Let's not overstate the role of the KC in all this. The reality is that Councils have consistantly failed to carry out their legal duties of inspection. The RSPCA are not exactly covered in glory either, they too have failed to take on the puppy farmers in any consistant way.

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    1. I get rather tired of all the criticism aimed at the RSPCA. The RSPCA has two major problems, firstly it doesnt have the legal powers to do all that the public seems to expect them to do, and secondly it is a charity, not a government body, dependent on donations , and doesnt have unlimited funds to do what the public unrealistically wants nowadays. Yes, I agree some of the limited funds they have might be better spent on actual work on cruelty and neglect, and less on PR and political lobbying, but even if ALL their current income was spent on direct work to protect animals , they STILL couldnt meet all the unreal expectations of them. So if you want the RSPCA to do a better job, give them a more effective legislative framework within which to work, and fund them properly as an agency so they can employ the staff and run the centres , which could do the work you want them to do.
      But then one hears the same people who complain about the RSPCA and local authorities and puppy farming dont want the tighter legislation and control on dog breeding and animal welfare, because it might affect them as dog breeders (and anyway it is AR people behind it) And they dont want a government funded agency controlling dog breeding or dog welfare. And now we have the same people simultaneously attacking the KC for trying to improve the health and welfare of dogs, and demanding that they do more! You cant have it both ways, so what do you want?
      The Canine Alliance websites ( the official one and even worse, the unofficial one) are driving me nuts, so much confusion and contradiction and misinformation! Just a few sane voices among the current chaos, but who is actually listening to them? Thank God there are people at the KC, the AHT , the RSPCA and the SSPCA who simply plough on and do their job, amidst what increasingly just seems like largely meaningless noise. The last few days I find myself just switching off from it all, not sure I even want to read much more of this irritating garbage which has little to do with the welfare of dogs.

      Delete
    2. So perhaps you can defend the RSPCAs Recent decision that it will be FURTHER 4 YEARS before they say they wont put a healthy dog in their care down!!!! For the salary of their 12 highest paide people that £1,000,000.00 could of saved THOUSANDS of dogs every year, pity ex vet Mark Evens didnt bother to say about the poor mutts murdered by the RSPCA each year or does that not have the same bite as his mutant soundbite?

      Delete
    3. Why not get your facts right? The salaries of the 17 highest paid employees of the RSPCA are listed in the Annual Report and Accounts, only one employee, the chief exec is paid at this kind of level (less than a senior executive in local government would get nowadays)
      I expect you are also jumping up and down about the story (entirely fictional but widely circulated on the internet ) that the RSPCA gave £1m to the Labour Party. They didnt,not a penny, charities are not allowed to donate to political organisations, but it makes a good story doesnt it?
      They also explain in the annual report that a large proportion of the healthy dogs that are euthanised are Staffie type dogs, who make up as much as 75% of the dogs in some of their centres and are difficult to rehome
      Where I live in Scotland, the SSPCA has a policy of not euthanising healthy dogs, but this can mean lengthy or even indefinite stays in a centre for a hard to place dog - and long stays in a rescue centre are not good for a dog either.

      But carry on denigrating the RSPCA
      , and urging the public not to donate to them, so they have even less funds for their work prosecuting people for cruelty to animals and neglect. Make it more difficult for them to pay their staff or run their centres, and you know what, you will have even more to complain about. Or would you rather have a government agency, with higher paid staff and far stronger legal powers, doing the job that the RSPCA try to do.
      Up here in Scotland, I hear few complaints about the way the SSPCA do their job

      Delete
    4. Dalrich and of those 17 employees in 2010 (the RSPCA fail to publish a newer report on their website) they are paid at LEAST £1,150,000.00, so how mnay of those staffie type could of been saved with that type of money?

      Delete
  51. Just to point out that sadly one high profile breed is certainly NOT in decline when it comes to demand. The pug KC registrations have increased nearly 500% since 2001.

    ReplyDelete
  52. Funny that Kate they have increased despite PDE highlighting them to the general peblic. This imo gives you a clue that the geberal public do not care really but I do believe most ofg the Show Breeders do. I am on a facebook group that at the moment have umpteen Pets getting bred/ advertised for Stud and puppies for sale Infact there is a horrendous looking Pug being advertised at the moment on it for Stud for £100 and advertising they will accept any other breed for him as well. Now I know there will be rather a lot of interest as its cheap nothing to do with health or anything else eg Ethics. Wonder how many litters will be registered from this dog alone?? This blog imo attacks the wrong people

    ReplyDelete
  53. amimej nossirah8 April 2012 15:40

    Correct anon but thats what the programs are all about, attacking the wrong people.

    ReplyDelete
  54. Again from the USA here, I hope this argument is solely against some of the outdated thinking of the dog show crowd and not against pedigree dogs in general. I also wouldn't be too quick to denigate the backyard breeder and perhaps it's time to start referring to them as home breeders or something less derogatory instead. For it might be in their yards that some of the genetic diversity being bred out of show dogs still exists or the non-extreme phenotypes. In fact, I remember hearing some time ago that Von Willibrands disease became so prevalent in show line Dobermans that it was outcrosses to pet stock that helped to start breeding it out of show stock. Home breeders just need better education and incentives to conduct health checks and I'm not at all opposed to making this a requirement for registration as long as the number of tests is reasonable, perhaps targeting the most costly and quality of life affecting issues in each respective breed.

    ReplyDelete
  55. Dalraich

    It is you that needs to get your facts right.
    One of the reasons that The RSPCA is criticised by genuine animal lovers is that is now perceived as a political organisation and not a genuine animal charity. For instance if you look at their constitution you will find that any donation that goes to central office cannot be spent on the care of animals, so anyone giving money should make sure that it goes to a local branch and not central office.
    The RSPCA does do many good things but it does destroy many perfectly health dogs and has done so for many years. And your reasoning that somehow that it is OK is “that a large proportion of the healthy dogs that are euthanized are Staffie type dogs, who make up as much as 75% of the dogs in some of their centres and are difficult to rehome” is, quite frankly disgusting.
    Meanwhile they continue to prosecute the public in high profile cases such as the old man whose elderly Labradors were taken away from him because they were too fat!
    Other issues include their constant refusal to work with other organisations rather than with them, allow the police to dictate their policy on Dangerous Dogs and to place the importance of placing their own PR above animal care is off putting to say the least. BTW I make no criticism against the SSPCA as I do not know enough about them.
    WE do need a viable RSPCA and of course there are many good people that work for them but in its current form I don’t believe that it is “fit for purpose”, you don’t have to look very far on the internet to find some of the injustices.

    It would be wonderfull to see a program called RSPCA exposed; How about it Jemima?

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    1. I didnt say that it is OK that RSPCA are euthanising healthy dogs. But many of those being euthanised are Staffie type dogs that they cant find suitable homes for. So what should they do with them? Let them stay on permanently in RSPCA centres? Keeping the kennels filled so there is no space left to take in more dogs who may be living in appalling situations of cruelty and neglect? While their income dwindles due to the campaigning of people like yourself to discourage donations to the RSPCA? How would you solve the problem of unwanted dogs, often with behavioural problems, that the RSPCA cant find homes for? The kind of hate campaign being waged against the RSPCA is just another example of the sick side of the internet. Sick campaigns waged by sick people , and a lot of other stupid people jumping on the bandwaggon without stopping to think. Fuelled by misinformation which often comes from people who have been prosecuted by the RSPCA, and banned from keeping animals. If there are things that you think need changing , become an RSPCA supporter, raise money for them, and work from within for change. After all, the RSPCA trustees are elected, they can be replaced by those who elect them. Ranting on the internet achieves nothing, it simply stirs up hatred and polarises the factions

      Delete
    2. Staffies are KILLED.. not "euthanized".. euthanize suggests they are suffering in some way.. they are not.. they are killed for space.. period.

      Delete
  56. I see from the Ehxibitors Voice and Choice website that they are applauding the fact the Jenny the Bulldog, who was disqualified for health problems, has won "dog of the year" at a show where no health checks are in place.

    Are these people for real? Do you think that they hear what they are saying?

    Maybe it wouild be a good thing if they did break away from the KC , have completeley unregulated shows and we could watch them all disapear up their own backsides!

    ReplyDelete
  57. let's hear what you say.. why should she not win? because one vet found something 'wrong"..I suppose you think she should be spayed because of one vets opinion.. right?
    Can you tell me what the "health problem" was and how it affects her quality of life.. and whether of not it will affect her get or her grand get.. and so on? Of course you cannot..I hope you are never ill and are misdiagnosed.. they don't call them "second opinions" for nothing
    Go Jenny .. well done and well deserved

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    Replies
    1. The understanding of the issues with Jenny could be solved quite easily. Release the vet report so people know what she failed for. Until this is done the support for her gives the impression that people don't care about the health issues only winning.

      Delete
    2. People can certainly care abut health issues and still win.. or lose.. health issues are not all encompassing when it comes to breeding.. if you only breed "perfect" dogs you will have no dogs at all.

      Delete
  58. But she didnt get a second opinion opinion did she. There were no Vet checks....

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  59. As I understand it the charge is that the vet at Crufts found an old eye injury that would not have been visable without the use of a torch - i.e. the judge could not have noticed it.
    They claim vet went on to misdiagnose this as the start of a serious eye condition and this was why the Bulldog BOB was not confirmed and the dog was not allowed to progress to the group judging.
    Whatever we think of the Bulldog breed or the vet checks for the famous 15 (and my views on both are well known) there is at the very least a possibility that the Crufts vet got it wrong.
    I'm not about to start throwing stones at the Crufts vet and I certainly don't agree with costly and divisive legal actions.I do,however, think we should keep an open mind on this one until the full facts become available.
    Kevin Colwill

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    Replies
    1. This could be resolved instantly if Jenny's owners would release the vet report. It is in their gift to do so.

      Jemima

      Delete
    2. i would guess if legal action is pending they have probably been advised to say nothing and release nothing.

      Delete
    3. Kevin, as Jemima says there is an instant way of ending this. The Cruft´s vets, and the KC, and the bulldog´s owner each know exactly what was the basis for that "fail". The only party who has a right to make it public is the bulldog´s owner. So - why don´t they?

      My Rough Collie bitch has a tiny opaque fleck in the cornea of one eye. Ordinarily, it´s barely visible; only in good slanting light, it´s obvious. Indoors, with ordinary lightning, if I wanted to show it to somebody it, I´d definitely have to use a pen torch. Now there is one thing I know for sure can NOT have caused it, and that is entropion. The bitch has normal skin of normal elasticity around her eyes. In her case, very likely "freedom of life" was the cause - she does push through brushwood, she jumps about in hay and straw, she drove a badger off the place in a hurry the other night. It´s easy to see how she might have sustained a minor superficial injury and it´s even easier to see how she did NOT get it.
      If she had been a show dog with entropion, which cause would have been the most probable?

      Delete
    4. From the Kennel Club response to the CA:

      "The report issued by the veterinary surgeon remains a matter between the veterinary surgeon and the exhibitor and therefore the Kennel Club cannot comment on any individual case. However we can confirm absolutely that no exhibit failed its veterinary check solely on the basis of damage cause by an accidental injury. All failures were as a result of a condition or conditions which would have caused pain or discomfort to the dog. "

      http://www.thekennelclub.org.uk/item/4242/23/5/3

      If the Bulldog owner wants to clear their name, they should release the vet's report. Until then, they are rumormongering, and all their assertions should be treated as completely unsubstantiated.

      Delete
    5. Jemima says: "This could be resolved instantly if Jenny's owners would release the vet report. It is in their gift to do so."

      I believe that technically, as the vets were employed by the KC and not the exhibitors, it is only the vet and the KC who can agree to make the report public. The exhibitor is not allowed to do so, in the same way that one cannot take photos of individual dogs at shows without the owners' express permission.

      Delete
    6. Actually Mary, the vets have already stated that they are legally required to be confidential, but that the owners are not.

      The only people who have the actual power to share the report is the owners. This is why I am so skeptical about the outrage of the DQ owners, and won't believe a word they day unless they actually show what the vet failed them on.

      The vets statement also said that even on the failed dogs, they had written good comments praising parts of the dog that were great.

      And for the photos, a dog show involves exhibiting the dog to the public, so photos are allowed to be taken with or without the owner's consent. It was one of the agendas the KC had to make clear.

      Delete
  60. The vets were asked to 'fail' dogs which showed corneal scarring which may have been due to eyelid conformation problems. You don't always need a torch for this; i can see several tiny scars on my old springers cornea with the naked eye. His were caused by cats and thorns (he is a hunting spaniel). Of course an injury could produce a similar scar to an eyelid defect and the vets were probably erring on the side of caution; perhaps in future owners of the high profile breeds would be advised to ask their vet for a letter explaining how any injury occured in case of future wins and vet checks?

    I am very concerned with some of what the CA is writing on facebook. I know most of them are really caring owners and breeders but some are sounding like they just want to win at any cost to their animals. This may not be what they intend, but it's how some of them come across. They must proceed with caution or lose any public support...
    VP

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    1. "This may not be what they intend, but it's how some of them come across. They must proceed with caution or lose any public support..."

      Oh, it's far too late for that.

      Delete
  61. Guys...I've supported the vet checks from the start. I've written on the subject and I've had a good number of face to face discussions about it. Find a more consistent supporter of vet checks and I'll happily shake his/her hand...hell, I'd give 'em a big snog!
    I'm also on record as saying those of us who support the checks have a vested interest in the vets getting them right.
    I'm not, really not, bashing the vets who were brave enough to take on the job at Crufts. Nor am I supporting the failure of the Bulldog exhibitors to release the information. I suspect that is either realated to planned legal action or plain old fashioned politics.
    All I'm saying is the facts are not clear to me and while the facts remain unclear I'd advise everyone not to jump to any conclusions or into any elephant traps!
    Kevin Colwill

    ReplyDelete
  62. Pucker up, Mr Colwill...

    No need to be defensive - I don't think anyone was accusing you of anything, were they?

    My diagnosis is that you've been spending way too much time on dog social network sites.. It is the road to mayhem, paranoia and shriveling of brain. Stop immediately and normalcy will resume.

    Here's OK, though...

    ;-)

    Jemima

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  63. I confess...facebook has turned my head. 

    I've not been eating properly, sometimes I get a funny pain, a tendency towards grandiose language, a certain lack self-awareness and I've started seeing those spiders in dark corners again.

    You’re right…I urgently need a chill pill or I’ll end up joining the Canine Alliance!

    Thanks for the heads up!!

    Kevin

    ReplyDelete
  64. Those are only the early symptoms, Kevin. As the disease progresses, you will start to find yourself filled with an obsessional and paranoid hatred of anybody who has a different view from yourself, and you will attribute all kinds of strange beliefs, motives and acts to them which are entirely the product of your fevered imagination. You will find yourself spending up to twenty hours a day hunched over your laptop , reading canine chat groups for anything posted by your enemies or replies to what you have written , pouncing on everything they write, interpeting the most sinister meanings of their posts, and fired up by their insults to yourself. In your first enthusiasm , you will probably try to engage in some kind of reasonable and rational discussion with them - this is a waste of time, they dont come back with rational discussion, they simply resort to personal abuse, and name calling, and complaints to Facebook (or whatever) about "your" offensive behaviour. Having a sensible and well informed view of things constitutes being "offensive", so they will try to get you banned from whatever site you try to post on. To get some understanding of how their minds work, a good place to start is the closed and heavily censored Stop PDE2 group (you will have to have a good alias, as you wont get in under your own name) . This group have an amusing tradition of inventing new names for people they dont like (like referring to Beverley Cuddy as "Cruddy", so witty) . There is much talk of "moles" and rooting them out. They will give you a pretty good idea of the paranoid fantasies that develop as one gets sucked more deeply into the trench warfare of canine internet groups . Meanwhile , as you spend more and more hours immersed in all this garbage, your home gets covered with more and more dust, your dogs get shorter and shorter walks as you rarely leave your desk, and you find you cant remember the names of your wife and children any more. You may also find you are drinking more, as the alcohol helps to fuel your "wit" when engaging with the enemy, but remember that getting on the internet after a few drinks is just as dangerous as driving a car . You will note that some of the most paranoid people in the canine world often make references to having a drink while posting, they even hold cyber parties where the alcohol flows freely to celebrate some imaginary victory over the enemy (who is usually a strange person referred to as JH or BC)
    Battered and bruised, and probably having been banned from a few other groups , tarred as an "AR supporter funded by PETA" , and having survived a visit from an apologetic local RSPCA man following a malicious anonymous call alleging ill treatment/neglact of your dogs, you will end up running your own blog, the safest way to stay in control and to be able to express yourself freely without censorship. Now you too can moderate and censor or shut out completely those who disagree with you, or let through just enough of their sickest E mails to make them look silly from time to time.
    Welcome to the weird world of the social media. Read a good psychiatric text book on mental and personality disorders and addictions, and it will help you to understand some of what goes on - or to recognize some of the early symptoms in yourself :))
    Some of it is also very funny (like the person who claimed Patrick Burns is secretly funded by HSUS) , and humour is a good escape valve. Somebody who got fed up with the incessant and very racist England/Scotland warfare on the internet had the brilliant idea of setting up a Facebook page called England v Scotland where both sides can rant and tell jokes about each other, with much foul language, but it is so over the top that everybody just falls about laughing at themselves. Maybe we need something similar for dog folk - nowt so queer as dog folks!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Kevin just back away from the CA facebook page which is full of accusations of "dissenters, trolls, AR, Jemima-lovers" if you dare to question or oppose one thing. Just in case you are not sure which category you fall into, Andrew Brace has very kindly made an a) b) c) categorisation, which basically says you are either a) a totally blind sheep b) too scared to speak out or c) opposed to some of our views and totally deserving of being painted out to be an utter fool.

      Some very smart person has thought to screen capture their crazy rantings and post sarcastic comments underneath.

      Enjoy http://madravingsoflunatics.tumblr.com/

      Delete
  65. You're only paranoid if they're not out to get you!

    ReplyDelete
  66. Is that like those personality tests you used to see in magazines??...if you answered

    Mostly A's - you'll die alone having never known love
    Mostly B's - marry out of despairation and live a souless lie
    Mostly C's - live a happily ever after with the woman/man of your dreams

    Kevin

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  67. Have you actually read Andrew's real version ? Or did you fall out with him for calling you "silly" ?

    I think it's more like;

    a) congratulations! you are also a short-sighted sheep who has been insulated by the showing scene for too long

    b) you're new here and still have a small grip on reality, but don't worry we will bully that out of you

    c) you won't be swayed by membership to our special friends club, nor can you be bullied. We shall ridicule you instead.

    ReplyDelete
  68. sorry i fail to see how much of the latter posts above help any, on either side. Both appear to be doing what they are accusing other of doing which is simply aniping at one another as they dare to have a differing opinion??? Frankly from an outside perspective this just muddys the water and is not at all dealing with the presented issues.............. I'm quite surprised that Jemima has allowed these to be publised as I fail to see how they help any towards her 'cause' or for that of pedigree dogs??

    ReplyDelete
  69. Sometimes one has to climb out of the mud , and stand back on the river bank to get a perspective on what is going on. And it isnt a pretty sight, watching thousands of people who claim to be dog lovers ,blinded by the mud in their eyes, rolling in the mud and bashing each other, because six dogs (with faults due to exaggerated conformation) didnt get an award of Best of Breed at Crufts. Pretty ridiculous, isnt it? Or even very funny! And thats how it looks to people in the real world looking in on the strange parallel universe of dog shows and the breeding of show dogs.

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    1. I agree that it sure isn't showing the dog world in a particularly positive light. I also have to say that, as someone whose primary interest is in genetics, it is discouraging to see so much misinformation being given about that particular subject. I am left with two very unpleasant conclusions. Either there are fair number of breeders out there that really do not grasp some basic concepts relevant to my fiend of study, or there are a fair number of breeders being disingenuous with the public. Either option makes me despair for the dog breeds relying on their stewardship.

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    2. It might not qualify as satire but, come on; we can forgive the occasional misfired joke – can’t we? You’re talking to Mr Earnest Endeavour 2012, my default position is taking things way too seriously...don’t I get a day off??
      The trouble with the internet is it’s simultaneously the home of the off the cuff (if never off the record) remark and the considered argument. I deal in both and I admit a good few of both have gone down like lead balloons. C’est la vie, I’m still plugging away!
      Want my considered opinion on the CA...The concise version is “I don’t know”.
      I don’t think Andrew Brace has got anything like due credit for his opening remarks in the CA inaugural meeting. Remarks that included a challenge to those who didn’t believe in health testing and a candid statement that he had changed the way he judged dogs in response to PDE. Not at all what I was expecting to hear.
      Let’s go back a few short years; closed ranks, blanket denial of serious health issues, a kneejerk mistrust of outsiders. It’s frankly amazing to think that a meeting of top show people, wounded and angry show people at that, could begin by placing health and welfare at the top of their agenda.
      The reality check comes soon enough. The more you look the more you see that although we may all use the language of health and welfare we have rather different perceptions of what that actually means. I do think that when you scratch the surface there is still a fair bit of the “we know best” attitude not far beneath. We see this particularly strongly in the desire to defend the primacy of breed standards and their guardians the judges.
      So there is good and there is not so good. We’ll see what the future brings. In the meantime just step back for a minute, take a breath, and look at the ground we have covered in the last three years. I take my hat off to everyone...”Dame” Jemima, “Saint” Beverly, “Reluctant Revolutionary” (if your reading Gossip Dog you can have that one) Steve Dean and even “The Doyenne of Dogdom” (you can have that too) Andrew Brace.
      Yours “never knowingly undersold an opinion” - Kevin Colwill

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