DogWellNet.com is the web platform for the International Partnership for Dogs (IPFD), and will function as an information hub, providing links, documents, and additional resources to breeders and others in the dog world. However, it will be much more than ‘Google-for-dogs’.
The whole design and structure of the platform revolves around ‘building community’ – bringing people together. This will be accomplished by both the way the IPFD will develop the site (e.g. using IPFD staff as well as volunteers from partner institutions), and from functionality inherent in the design of the site. For example, the software allows for the creation of ‘Forums’ where groups can effectively communicate, share information, reach consensus, etc. Some Forums and panels are already active on DogWellNet.com.
One Forum will be an Expert Panel addressing issues in using genetic testing in dog breeding. These international experts will meet (virtually), have discussions, review evidence, evaluate information available on the web and from around the world, and then produce guidelines and advice publicly on DogWellNet.
Another Forum will address an important goal of the IPFD and DogWellNet.com: to facilitate actions. Specifically, to support existing and new efforts at international collaborations on breed-specific health and breeding strategies. Individuals with experience in creating and sustaining such collaborations will offer a practical perspective on such developments and serve as an ongoing support for breed groups seeking to improve international collaboration. If needed, DogWellNet.com can accommodate international groups themselves, if they need an internet presence and online support.
The main content areas of DogWellNet.com include our Pedigreed Breeds Database compiling important information from around the world, Health and Breeding a large section including information pertinent to breeding dogs, including national and international issues; Welfare a section including information on Welfare and Health, Legislation, and more; Research; and Education. Development is continuing by the staff and consultants of the IPFD. The first priority has been to focus on the broadest issues of health in breeds and breeding. However, ongoing funding initiatives are being pursued to increase the breadth, depth, and speed of development in order to expand the content as quickly as possible.
DogWellNet.com was launched at the 2nd International Dog Health Workshop, hosted by the German Kennel Club (VDH), in Dortmund in February 2015. It is open to the public at this time; however, we are still in 'beta-testing' mode; only collaborators, staff from our Partners and volunteers invited to participate have been/will be given Advanced Member access as they assist in continuing development of the website. Further information on the structure and functionality of the website is in the About DogWellNet category.