The Breed-Specific Instructions Initiative for Judges
Special Breed Specific Instructions (BSI) regarding exaggerations in pedigree dogs: A health protective project initiated by the Swedish Kennel Club.
A general reflection is that the increasing and necessary focus on health and soundness in purebred dogs contains an increasing demand for advanced knowledge about excellent breed type in judges. Show judges are expected to preserve breed type of the purebred dogs – not only the health and life of the dogs with pedigrees.
Also: see our Downloads section for more information on the BSI... posted ... with permission from
Dr Göran Bodegård
MD PhD Chairman of the BSI group of the Swedish Kennel Club, Stockholm, Sweden
BSI explained at SKKPlay (English)
In Sweden an initiative was taken by the Swedish Kennel Club in order to prevent the destructive influence of extreme typed dogs on the breeding of pedigree dogs:
2006 ten Scandinavian all-round judges scrutinised the FCI breed list to select breeds at risk regarding overemphasis of type characteristics. 50 breeds were suggested as being high profile breeds at risk for unsoundness and threatened health due to exaggerations in breed type. The group of all-rounder has been consulted in the continued work with the project.
2007 cooperation was established with the breed clubs for these breeds. In majority the clubs positively greeted the initiative to make judges more aware of the risk situation and expressed that they had waited for the kennel club to come to help and support with these issues. A minority of clubs considered this to create a very negative focussing on the breeds. The continuous dialogue with the clubs is essential for the project.
Veterinary medical knowledge and insurance company statistics were integrated. This was undertaken by a questionnaire to practising veterinary surgeons 2007 and a continuous consulting of the Breed profiles from the AGRIA/ SKK/ SLU scientific project. The veterinary medical aspects had focussed on the same 50 breeds as the allrounders but another 10 breeds were suggested to also be listed and the number of high profile breeds then rose to 60.
2007 the Swedish Kennel Club arranged a general judges conference focussing on the listed breeds. Another ten breeds were suggested to be added to the list by the assembled judges.
The foundation material (1-4) was evaluated and there was good enough motivation for 47 breeds to be listed in the first edition of the BSI (2008). This edition was applied and evaluated during 2009 at all shows affiliated to the Swedish Kennel Club. Based on the initial foundation material (1-4) plus the judges’ evaluations a revised edition of the BSI was approved by the Swedish KC Central Board to be in use from 2011 – this addition lists 46 breeds.
The BSI routine is integrated in the Swedish show system and will be continuously updated regarding the breeds listed and the areas of risk being focused on. This is done on the basis of the 1 – 5 pillars described above where there are dynamic changes in number 2 (cooperation with the clubs), 3 (updating of the Breed Profiles) and 5 (the continuously increasing amount of judges evaluations - around 4000 from 2009 and 2010).
The BSI-committee of the Swedish Kennel Club has the responsibility for the continuous follow up of the project and its implementation; the list will be revised again at the General Judges Conference in November 2012 when the number and selections of breeds will be adjusted.
The intention of the BSI-project is to raise judges’ awareness of health and soundness matters in general and the risks of exaggerating type characteristics in particular.