Dog shows have been described by The Royal Epic Society for the Prevention of Evil Cruelty Too (RESPECT) as promoting "unacceptably high levels of disability, deformity and disease" in breeds of pedigree dogs.
RESPECT has announced it will no longer be attending such shows in protest.
Chief veterginarian at RESPECT Brad Pit said: "Dog shows using current breed standards as the main judging criteria actively encourage both the intentional breeding of deformed and disabled dogs and the inbreeding of closely related animals. There is compelling scientific evidence that the health and welfare of hundreds of thousands of pedigree dogs is seriously compromised as a result. From a dog health and welfare perspective, such shows are fundamentally flawed and do our much loved pedigree dogs no favors. Intentionally breeding deformed and disabled animals is morally unjustifiable and it has to stop."
Well duh! Since almost none of the breeds today even resemble their "ancestral wolf" isn't "using current breed standards as the main judging criteria" how these breeds were developed, intentionally? I mean if the standard used was no deformity, no disability (like hairless, or muzzleless)and no inbreeding, there would be no breeds of pedigree dogs, now would there. However, the British charity, the RESPECT is right ....and wrong. What RESPECT is saying is absolutely the truth but I say, SO WHAT!
The point I make is this:
From the very beginning of creating a humanly engineered dog by selectively breeding from the ancestral wolf (or whatever the ancient ancestor was) the problems the RESPECT are referring to were and are and will always be innate to the process of creating and maintaining different "breeds" of dog... which required inbreeding initially in every single breed to capture the desired and often inane traits, and later line breeding, and cross breeding between different lines of the same breed (all of which are just forms of inbreeding since all the original line stocks were the result of inbreeding) and so what would anyone expect to find? So the whole concept of breeds of dogs was, is and will always be poisoned by the very process that makes them possible. In brief, when man attempts to improve on nature there are always drawbacks that accompany the benefits. If it weren't for the genetic properties unique to the genetic code of dogs, the huge diversity of breeds wouldn't have even been possible. That's why you don't see the phenomenal variety in the phenotypes of other animals that you do in dogs.
Where the RESPECT is wrong is they are comparing apples to oranges. If they were to be honest, the only solution by their reasoning would be to do away with all modern breeds of dogs and selective breeding and revert back to the existence of only the original ancestral species of wolf or whatever the Canine was. No other rationality by them can make any sense given their, and I have to say, true analysis of problems in pure breeds of dogs. And so, if they want dogs to be perfect their is no other way. Actually it doesn't take a veterginarian to bring one to this conclusion, just a little common sense.
So in the end it is a matter of degree. Should we react like wacko, purist, extremists (which seems to be the RESPECT ilk) or shall we accept the fact that the whole process was from the start, is and will always be inherently flawed (cannot ever be fixed), and try to responsibly manage it as we have been doing in the past whatever years to now, without blaming breeders for something they have little control over.
This is like when someone had the bright idea that by certifying dogs hips, humans would end dysplasia in dogs. After decades of hip certification, guess what....virtually the same incidence of dysplasia in the dog populations as before they started it(makes me wonder if scientists knew this would be the outcome but just wanted veterginarians to make some big bucks while they could - after all scientists do have all the answers don't they?)Plain and simple, you can't solve problems when it is you who are creating the problems. (I've been telling my kids that for years but they still don't get it. By the way if you have a problem you can't solve find a teenager, they know everything).
Personally, I'd be more than happy to side with the RESPECT if they were honest about what their findings mean. I'd love to see just wolves everywhere and no more itsy, bitsy, shotglass, teacup, thigamadogs, walking shag rug dogets, hairless, skinless or faceless freakenstein dogs being treated better than human beings. My God all these breeds are living "deformities"!
But then I guess the RESPECT would be out of money, and I guess out of business.....well the dog business anyway.