The road to hell is paved with good intentions. Bernard of Clairvaux (1090 – 1153)
As noted in a prior post, the British "Canine Alliance" foolishly has expressed a desire to work with the KC to promote health testing in the show setting, providing that such checks apply fairly to ALL participants.
However, the idea of testing all show entrants is not practical, admits pedigree dog blogger, TV producer and animal rights puritan Jemima Harrison, stating, "can you imagine the uproar, anyway, should vets DQ some top dog de jour that's just arrived after a 300 mile journey to compete?"
Been there, done that. Remember Crufts last week? These people probably would have preferred to escape the spotlight of winning and then being singled out for ridicule for having an undisclosed "health problem". The popular lynch mob sentiment seems to be "why not release the results of their exam if they have nothing to hide"? Why not indeed? Privacy be damned, none of that exists after the witch hunt and public lynching. What was the crime again? Who knows? "Guilty!" is all that matters.
When the Canine Alliance members mentioned their objections to the heavy-handed and unfair way they have been treated by the Kennel Club, Harrison criticized them for worrying more about themselves than the dogs.
The DOGS are more important than the people who breed them, in the eyes of the animal rightists.
The dogs don't care if they are in a show, she muses, and anyway, she wants dog shows to go down the tubes for good…to be banned, in her words. (Like as if we didn't already figure that one out). Besides, if poodles cared they would object to being groomed to be "embarrassingly ridiculous" according to
No, dogs don't care at all if they are in a show, or how they are groomed. They are DOGS, not humans. Golly, that is hard to remember for those who prioritize the treatment of dogs over the treatment of human beings.
Yes, dog shows are primarily a human activity. We make the choice to participate, for whatever personal reason we may have. For fun, for possibly starting a breeding program, for camaraderie with fellow hobbyists, for the sense of accomplishment, for the bond you establish with your dog, for receiving recognition for a job well done. Don't we all seek approval? That is basic human nature.
But according to the ARistas, dogs have the right to not be exploited at the hands of the exhibitors, judges and breeders.
In a newly-released statement, the Canine Alliance states:
was formed to represent everyone involved with pedigree dogs, and to negotiate when necessary with any related organisations in the interest of all breeds. Its aims are to protect and support the well-being of pedigree dogs, to uphold the ethics of responsible dog breeding, to encourage health checking of all dogs and to allow the exhibition of pedigree dogs without bias or discrimination.... It pledges to be fair and totally transparent, always working to the benefit of pedigree dogs." Alliance
Any related organizations? Like who? YIKES! The Pedigree "exposers", perhaps? The RSPCA, an animal rights group? The very group that has actual police authority? Don't they have enough power already to enforce their anti-dog breeding agenda on society? Guess not.
You don't negotiate with terrorists! Those with nothing to lose don't actually compromise very well. It's all take and no give. The demands just keep on coming!
Anyone with a lick of common sense realizes that if you give animal rights extremists an inch, they will definitely take a mile. But sadly, those whose country is overrun with AR laws and bleeding-heart sentiment just don't seem to "get it". Exactly where do they envision this path to the future leading us?
Harrison, leader of the dog rights puritans, lays her cards on the table in her recent blog, as she mocks the published goals of the "Canine Alliance". Here is her plan for the path:
At last! An organisation that I can sign up to! After all, I'm involved with pedigree dogs and I can sign up to most of those aims. I also protect and support the well-being of pedigree dogs; I am happy to uphold the ethics of responsible dog breeding and to encourage health checking of all dogs….
So what shall we do first, CA?
- Limits on popular sires and inbreeding?
- KC registrations dependent on taking and actually passing breed specific tests?
- Health reps educated in rudimentary genetics?
- Proper breed health surveys?
- Ban dog shows in their current form (I mean, didn't you say you were working to the benefit of pedigree dogs?)
It's so exciting, isn't it? Together, we can achieve so much!
My my, someone who neither breeds nor shows dogs, but "involved" so intimately. So thrilled to have such "achievements" to crow about. "Together", eh? Unfortunately, with all the conciliating that the KC has done, I'm sure she does feel that such "achievements" are hers to boast about.
And, if I didn't know she was a pet owner rather than a breeder, this idea would clue me in immediately. Requiring PASSING breed specific tests simply to be registered? And what end, pray tell, would such folly serve? Do many people seeking out a purebred dog really want an unregistered dog? And when we move beyond registration to actual showing and breeding, shouldn't breeders have the license to decide whether or not they wish to throw the baby out with the bathwater?
Oops, guess not. After all, in true AR form, these folks believe it is horrific to pass on any defective genes. Dogs must be 100% disease-free to bred. Or, in the case of the British, to simply be exhibited! Ah, make that, must be disease-free to even be registered!
Is it any wonder that people resist health testing when there is such a social stigma attached to the "unhealthy" dog and its "bad breeder"? According to the events unfolding in the
And, the problem with such simple-mindedness is that there is no 100% healthy dog. ALL dogs, just like all people, can and do suffer from health problems, and yes, many are genetic. All animals carry some genes for detrimental health traits. Geneticists believe so, and I think they probably know whereof they speak.
In "Removing the Stigma of Genetic Disease", Dr. Jerold
Purebred dogs as well as outcrossed dogs all carry problem genes. And dogs with extremes of conformation…..excessively short legs or short noses, for example….are not necessarily inbred, PDE rhetoric notwithstanding.
Geneticists advise against automatic dismissal of disease carriers. Such practices further limit genetic diversity. Such practices give us the same result as popular sire syndrome! For some of the endangered breeds, narrowing the gene pool by eliminating dogs with whatever health problem you are looking at is not always a black-and-white decision.
What the devil is a "proper" breed health survey? Oh, I'm sure the omniscient ARs among us will be waiting in line to help craft such projects. The very people who believe that elimination of hip dysplasia in domestic dogs is a realistic goal.
If one is actually "educated in rudimentary genetics", they would not recommend such drastic winnowing away at breed gene pools. Eliminate every dog with borderline or worse hips, and a significant proportion of ALL dogs will be gone. Canine orthopedists know that few breeds are free of hip dysplasia, and many if not MOST breeds have significant numbers of affected dogs.
So there go most all the breeds on hip issues, with the possible exception of sighthounds and standard poodles. In some of the toy breeds, eliminating all dogs with patellar issues would mean entire breeds would be tossed out.
Eliminating every Clumber with a diamond-shaped eyelid, as the AR extremists wish, would eliminate, well, EVERY Clumber Spaniel, wouldn't it? This from the KC breed standard:
"Acceptable to have some haw showing but without excess. Free from obvious eye problems."
"Haw" shows with a mild degree of ectropion. Apparently this part of the standard conflicts with the stated goals of the newly-instituted health checks. Wouldn't it be grand if they could get their act together and coordinate the goals here?
The KC just released information on breeds that are in danger of extinction in their country due to low numbers and closed gene pools.** Twenty-nine breeds are now considered endangered species in the
Way to decimate the gene pools of the breeds most in danger of extinction. Jolly Good Show!
Ronald Reagan reportedly once said, "The nine most terrifying words in the English language are: "I'm from the government and I'm here to help."
Substitute "Kennel Club" for "government", and you have the ten most terrifying words in the English language.