I am not a dog breeder but am a dog owner and love my dog as I would a child. I have read extensively since this show aired, prompted mostly by others that posted comments about HSUS. As a dog owner and a very concerned citizen about animal welfare, I was surprised and appalled by what I learned about the agenda of the Humane Society US (HSUS). The HSUS is very different from local Humane Societies that run shelters.
I would like to know how much research Nightline did before airing the segment on show dogs and what prompted the story in the first place. The discussion was mostly about Bulldogs but the Dalmatian and Cavalier King Charles Spaniel was shown without comment. I have an interest in staying informed on this subject and want to know about the objectivity related to this reporting. Obviously, if the HSUS spurred this story, I would seriously question the objectivity of the reporting.
I hope someone will take the time to answer these questions. I further hope there will be a follow up segment giving the public a better awareness of the opposing interests. I, for one, would be interested in learning more. Thank you for your consideration.
Forget HSUS and PeTA.
This is a guide to dog breeds and congenital diseases caused by human imposed breeding.
Certain facts about dog breeding, akc were obviously left out of the report on health issues with purebred dogs.
the AKC registers thousands of dogs each year. I would venture to guess that the show dogs make up less than 5% which means there are a lot of people breeding dogs, with no regard to health or conformation issues. Every breed has health issues. I have shown dogs, owned a grooming shop, been around purebreds and mixed breeds most of my life. There are responsible dog owners everywhere, there are irresponsible dog owners everywhere.
I asked my vet once if he saw more purebreds with problems than mixed breeds. His answer was yes but he followed that with an explanation. Most of the owners with the purebreds were more responsible about bring the dog in when it had a health issue. Some of those were minor issues, some not. Unfortunately we live in a society where a mixed breed is often a "throw away". The owner pays little if nothing for a dog, if it gets sick they dont take it for medical care. If it dies being chained in the yard with little human involvement, so what, it died. We never know why.
A show person, and I have been involved in this for over 40 yrs, probably takes that dog to the vet for a sniffle, knows their vet by their first name, and can call 24 hrs a day. They take care of their dogs, sometimes obsessively. As a rule they belong to a breed club. It is the breed club that sets the standards for the breed, works to eliminate the health problems. I know in my own terrier breed we have strict rules about breeding unhealthy animals or animals that have serious health problems. For heavens sake, it is our reputation. Why would we want to sell someone a sick animal? and for every show dog you see, there is the rest of the litter that are pets, on someone's couch, playing with someone's children.
when you buy a dog at a pet shop, you dont have a clue about the history or health problems. Even when your neighbor breeds his poodle to the dog two streets over, most times they dont have a clue, you just get what you get. But again, does this dog see the vet or is it simply put to sleep when there is a problem without much actual vet attention or investigation into why it is sick.
Having said that, it is utterly ridiculous to think that your pet will never have a health problem any more than it is realisic that your child will never have a health problem. As with anything, prospective pet owners should do their homework. Research a breed, talk to several breeders. They will usually be quite up front about health problems within a breed, and ALL have something. If it is not what you want, or are willing to take on then buy a plant.
"Purebred" is a misnomer. There is no such thing as a purebred dog any more than there is a pure human race. So-called purebred dogs are actually inbred. This is why they have over 300 genetic abnormalities, and genetic tests do not exist for most of them. This is why the "conformity required by the AKC causes suffering.
"Mixed bred" dogs are indeed cared for and taken to a vet if needed. As for dogs dumped in shelters, at least 25% of these dogs are "purebreds".