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Found 97 results

  1. Ian Seath has again stimulated our 'little grey cells' and maybe even touched on some emotions, attitudes, and even deep-seated beliefs in his DOG-ED: SOCIAL ENTERPRISE post (23 June 2020): CULTURE EATS STRATEGY FOR BREAKFAST! Catchy title - firstly - where does that come from, and what does it mean? "Management Guru Peter Drucker famously stated that culture eats strategy for breakfast. So, What does "culture eats strategy" mean for you and your organization? In a very practical sense: No matter what business strategy or strategic plan you try to implement with your team, its success and efficacy are going to be held back by the people implementing the plan if the culture does not support it. " from: SME Strategy Management Consulting Ian's article draws on his extensive knowledge and background in business, strategy, and change management - as well as his fantastic dog expertise - to examine topical international information on COVID-19 and to draw comparisons with challenges in the dog world. He wants to encourage us to think about various aspects of health and welfare in dogs. Further moving his title discussion into the dog world: it means that if those needed to implement and drive change (in attitudes or practices) aren't passionate about the change or at least willing to embrace change or - even worse - if they deny the need for change at all (i.e. deny the existence of 'a problem') or are apathetic to the issues, then you stand no chance implementing a plan. Ultimately it is all about the people. Denial or apathy or resistance to change may occur if there is great passion for and attachment to an existing culture. In terms of the complex problems of the dog world, IPFD exists because it is clear that these issues have many stakeholders who bear responsibilities for the challenges and the solutions. And each of the stakeholder communities has their own culture - and that influences their views and actions and even willingness to collaborate. Ian goes on to describe bench-marking, i.e., ways to define, measure and characterize issues and actions on 3 levels. Let's further describe this relative to the dog world, and with a few possible examples: Metrics (statistics, measures) - tell you “what the performance is” or define and quantify aspects of the issue. E.g., prevalence and increased breed-specific risks of disease in various populations based on quantitative analysis vs. anecdote from personal experience (e.g. MY dogs are healthy!) Challenges: differences across regions, types of dogs, etc.; lack of consensus on how much is too much; perspectives of those who see dogs from different populations - e.g. veterinarians in practice vs. show judges. Lack of comprehensive, clear evidence fosters a reliance on culture-based interpretations...spin! Process (how the situation came to be, or what has influenced those levels): E.g. the influences of breeding practices (how diligently have breeders prioritized health and longevity). It must be noted that these processes have certainly been driven by culture. E.g., breeding for performance vs. for the conformation show ring vs. for companion dogs vs. for the trendy puppy trade E.g. health programs implemented by breed and kennel clubs (Ian gives some good examples) Challenges - the perception of the need for and time frame of change; and the amount of change; the acceptance of any authority over practices and processes from within or outside a community or culture. There is a tendency to look for simple solutions to complex problems - and then to be surprised that the outcome wasn't ideal. Culture tells you the story behind the processes...and that includes attitudes, tradition, beliefs, and habits...of the people involved. Those within a community (e.g. show world, veterinarians, the wider public) may share one culture...or there may be various cultures within a wider community. Culture can change. There are many cultures and communities in the dog world! From those who believe pedigreed dogs are the most important and breed standards are essentially inviolable; to those who feel there is room for evolution and flexibility, even within existing registries; to those who feel pedigreed dogs are not necessary. From those whose culture defines dogs as commodities or chattels; to those who accept dogs as sentient beings with some rights; to those who think they should be essentially be accorded human-level treatment. Challenges - all those attitudes impact what that community, culture, or group accepts as reasonable levels of welfare or disease or longevity. In fact, when cultural influences are strong, they may impact the willingness of those inside the culture to objectively view metrics, or to embrace processes and programs. And let's face it - a group or individual's attachment to their culture may be so strong, that they tend to view it not as one view, but the only acceptable view. 'Cultural norms' may be very different across communities. Rigidity is a major barrier to collaboration. Keys to moving forward Firstly, reflecting sincerely on how YOUR culture influences you, and then, if you want others to respect your culture Being aware of the differences across stakeholders - in their culture (attitudes, attachments, basic beliefs, approaches, etc.) wouldn't if be great if we could respect all views? but at least we must be aware of whether our disagreements are arising from different interpretation of the metrics and evidence OR from a different approach and process OR from the cultural sphere Taking the brave step outside cultural influences - embrace collaboration and collective actions while never assuming there is a one-size-fits-all solution. Leadership from various cultures and communities is needed. The ultimate question is - do we have common ground on which to advance? For IPFD, that would mean that even if we have slightly different definitions on the specifics, everyone comes to the table with a desire to enhance the health and welfare of dogs. Human aspects are critical as well - but there must be a balance.
  2. This article is a summary we (IPFD) have created describing the issues, the dialogue and challenges around regulatory actions in the Netherlands as of June 2020. The issue is having a polarizing effect across stakeholder groups, and it is our belief that the best results for all dogs are to be achieved by collaborative efforts. IPFD also promotes the considerations of impacts on dogs, breeds, and people when programs are put in place, given the complex nature of issues of health and welfare. This article is a compilation of resources for those who are exploring the situation. Table Of Contents Key points of the situation and background from 2019 Dutch Kennel Club - Breeding Criteria Documentation (English) Stakeholder Responses DogWellNet Coverage and Dog Health Workshops Resources Kennel Club Programs Questions & Moving Forward... (also a good summary of major issues) Some key points: The government of the Netherlands has created a set of criteria about the conformation of short-muzzled dogs and regulations that prohibit breeding of any dog when one is of these is exceeded, regardless of the other criteria. Although the regulations apply to all breeders, as for other issues, pedigree dog breeders who register puppies with the national kennel club (Raad van Beheer, Dutch Kennel Club, DKC) are the most visible and traceable and there is an emphasis on the DKC to enact and enforce these guidelines. And it does not restrict ownership of these dogs or purchase and importation of dogs. Controversies and challenges include: In the 12 designated breeds, pedigreed dog breeders account for a very small proportion of puppies of these breeds being sold in the Netherlands; most are from non-pedigreed breeders and imports. How will the legislation help the majority of dogs? The 12 breeds: i.e., • Affenpinscher • Boston Terrier • English Bulldog • French Bulldog • Griffon Belge • Griffon Bruxellois • Petit Brabançon • Japanese Spaniel • King Charles Spaniel • Pug • Pekingese • Shih Tzu - although sharing some similarities in facial conformation do not have similar risks for Brachycephalic Obstructive Airway Syndrome, based on available statistics. As stated by the DKC in their response to the proposed legislation: The government's criteria restricting breeding describe exaggerated conformations, which DKC agrees are not desirable and the DKC has concurred with almost all criteria and is supportive in monitoring the breeding stock of pedigree dogs. (See table in Breeding strategy proposal Dutch KC, below). However, the DKC does not agree with the breeding-prohibiting criterion of the Craniofacial Ratio (CFR), stating that, “This criterion would make it impossible to breed certain breeds while the prognostic value and the reproducibility of the CFR are being questioned among scientists.” The scientific evidence for the use of the CFR in the way proposed by the government and their experts is not robust for the breeds studied or should at least be subjected to further review. The government criteria may overemphasize only one aspect of the problems in some of these breeds. Most of the 12 breeds were not part of the key cited study. The DKC is now under pressure from the government and welfare critics and members of the show world for meeting government demands. The situation is being hotly debated through much of the pedigreed dog world and beyond, with some expressing the concern that this regulatory approach is defined in a way to eventually eliminate these breeds and may lead to further restrictions for other breeds. Unfortunately, there are some voices dismissing compelling evidence that there are health problems in certain breeds. It may be that groups who support, in general, attention to the health and welfare of brachychephalics, and have spoken in support of the legislation, may not have carefully considered the evidence or wider impacts. Some are worried that other counties may follow the lead of the Netherlands, without careful consideration. Background: Health and welfare management of brachycephalic dogs is the issue; there are implications are for all dogs and owners. The health and welfare of brachycephalic dogs is a highly complex situation - and yet current reactions and efforts tend to be rather narrow. Positions on various sides seem to becoming entrenched. When narrow or unilateral solutions are enacted without adequate participation of all stakeholders, conflict rather than collaboration or collective actions is often the result. The intensity in published statements and discussions online these days, sometimes extending to hostility, will not lead to an improvement in relations and certainly not to an improvement for the health and welfare of dogs. Responsibility lies with all stakeholders. Simple solutions to complex problems are unlikely to be effective and generally produce unintended consequences. For background and commentary on the recent situation in the Netherlands, please see Dr. Brenda Bonnett's Blog from August 2019, where concerns are expressed that the proposed legislation in the Netherlands was not likely to achieve its goals and the balanced report of the Dutch Kennel Club was presented: Brachycephalic dogs in the Netherlands Since then, the government of the Netherlands has enacted its regulations, to address what they consider to be a pressing need to protect the health and welfare of brachycephalic dogs. Unfortunately, the proposed solutions do not seem to have taken into account the full scientific evidence about the problems nor possible solutions; they may not tackle the full range of concerns; and the focus/enforcement on pedigree breeders may not achieve population-wide benefits for the majority of dogs. While these regulations are under the mandate of one country's government, there is the potential for more harm than good to come from these efforts, with broad implications for owners, dogs, and breeders, both within and beyond the Netherlands. Raad van Beheer (The Dutch Kennel Club, DKC) has translated information on the background and particulars of government regulations regarding breeding brachycephalic dogs - effective in the Netherlands as of May 18, 2020. Links to extensive coverage of the issues are located on the Fokken met kortsnuitige honden page on Raad van Beheer's website. Links to the eight documents that are are available in English (accessed June 2020) are listed below. Below are compiled resources on the 'discussions' and issues as well as resources, including those calling for inclusive and collaborative discussions. This resource page will be updated as the situation evolves. ...
  3. English bulldogs have been in the spotlight of authorities and media for a long time. The breed has a striking appearance and is often mentioned when health issues in pedigree dogs related to their appearance are discussed. With this background and as a starting point the Swedish Kennel Club in collaboration with the Swedish Club for English bulldogs have recently launched a new breeding strategy for the breed. The strategy presents hands on advice for breeders on how to make visible progress over the coming five year period by focusing on the main health issues associated with the breed.
  4. 2020... Hélène Denis from the Club du Bulldog Anglais shared the French Kennel Club's BREATH Protocol (BRachycephalic Exercise Aptitude Test for Health) - SCC Service Santé et Gestion des ressources génétiques
  5. FECAVA: Healthy Breeding Brachycephalic issues: shared resources (multiple country's resources) Extreme Breeding Infographic BREEDING FOR EXTREME CONFORMATIONS - What is the problem? & What can we do? Causes, consequences... Raising awareness about health and welfare issues associated with excessive breed-related traits such as brachycephaly is important to FECAVA. The Federation has recently adopted a Europe-wide position paper on this topic. The Cambridge BOAS Research Group opened their new website in 2016. Great information on their programs and progress. Also background information on BOAS at a level for informed breeders, veterinarians and others. There are possibilities for dog owners and breeders in the UK to participate in and support this work. Owners and breeders: See the flyer for an overview.
  6. Consequences and Management of Canine Brachycephaly in Veterinary Practice: Perspectives from Australian Veterinarians and Veterinary Specialists Fawcett, et al., including Paul McGreevy, University of Sydney, Australia Animals 2019, 9, 3; doi:10.3390/ani9010003 https://www.mdpi.com/2076-2615/9/1/3 For: Veterinarians, health care professionals, all stakeholders Review: Brenda Bonnett, DVM, PhD This comprehensive review covers the health problems and welfare issues in brachycephalic dogs highlighting a veterinary perspective. The text of the paper comprises 19 pages and includes a wide-range of topics. This paper is an excellent resource for veterinary health care professionals and clinicians. However, topics in this paper are also important for all stakeholders involved with the brachycephalic issue in dogs. At the end of the paper, there is an important discussion of the ethical challenges for veterinarians, both as individuals and the profession as a whole. Concerned that readers, especially those who are not clinicians, may not persevere through the clinical information to reach this important section, I will highlight the importance of that discussion below. First, a general overview: “Simple Summary: Canine and human co-evolution have disclosed remarkable morphological plasticity in dogs. Brachycephalic dog breeds are increasing in popularity, despite them suffering from well-documented conformation-related health problems. This has implications for the veterinary caseloads of the future. Whether the recent selection of dogs with progressively shorter and wider skulls has reached physiological limits is controversial. The health problems and short life expectancies of dogs with extremely short skulls suggests that we may have even exceeded these limits. Veterinarians have a professional and moral obligation to prevent and minimise the negative health and welfare impacts of extreme morphology and inherited disorders, and they must address brachycephalic obstructive airway syndrome (BOAS) not only at the level of the patient, but also as a systemic welfare problem.” The broad range of topics include: · Concern that “Despite well-documented conformation-related health problems, brachycephalic dog breeds are increasing in popularity.”; · Detailed enumeration and description of associated health problems; · Behavioural impacts of brachycephaly, as well as · “substantial evidence that brachycephaly compromises the welfare of affected dogs”, highlighting insurance data and research findings; · Problems for individual dogs and their owners as well as for breed populations; · Immediate concerns as well as future perspectives; · Clinical diagnosis and management of BOAS and other problems in brachys, and · A thought provoking discussion of “Ethical Challenges Associated with Brachycephalic Breeds” and the role of veterinarians. Understanding the Complexity – the veterinary perspective Past all the discussion of clinical findings and approaches, the section on ethical challenges has excellent coverage of the concerns and conflicting interests for veterinarians. For example, the best resolution for competing issues is not always clear, e.g.: · the best interests of an individual dog, in general, and in relation to a specific health event; · its owner’s attachment, attitudes, wishes, needs, and ability to provide care; and · concerns for the breed overall, as well as · the practical reality of the veterinarian as both a caregiver and a business person. Two of the authors have also provided this summary: “Vets can do more to reduce the suffering of flat-faced dog breeds”: February 12, 2019 2.16pm EST http://theconversation.com/vets-can-do-more-to-reduce-the-suffering-of-flat-faced-dog-breeds-110702 It is important for all stakeholders to be aware of the challenges facing others as the dog world moves toward doing is what is best for dogs. Also see: DWN's Extremes of Conformation Category Latest on brachycephalics from Sweden Approaches to Breed-specific Extremes
  7. Updated information from the FKK: https://www.kennelliitto.fi/en/about-us/news/finnish-kennel-clubs-walk-test-helps-eliminate-dogs-severe-breathing-problems-breeding The Finnish Kennel Club (FKK) has today released information about a ongoing project 'Fitness examination being prepared for Bulldogs' [Dated link; see Internet Archive: https://web.archive.org/web/20151012050702/http://www.kennelliitto.fi/en/news/fitness-examination-being-prepared-for-bulldogs]in the English Bulldogs. This is a collaborative program between the kennel club, the breed club and The University of Helsinki Veterinary Hospital. Thirty English Bulldogs are being monitored for breathing, balance, a walking test, skin problems and x-ray'd from head to tail. The FKK has bought some equipment for the project and will pay for the study of the 30 dogs that the Breed Club has chosen to be tested. The aim is that this test could be used to evaluate dogs that would be suitable for breeding. Ultimately, the idea is to decrease health problems in any brachycephalic breed.
  8. 2020... The Brachycephalic Working Group has posted resources on Bulldogs, French Bulldogs & Pugs... VetCompass developed infographics, which summarise brachycephalic breed research... What's available? Bulldogs in the UK: Facing up to some challenges + full paper; French Bulldogs: Soaring UK popularity + full paper; Pugs: Weighing up health priorities + full paper
  9. As many of you may know, there has been a lot of focus of health and welfare issues in brachycephalics and in the spring information about Pugs in the Netherlands. The situation of government regulations on dog breeding is a complex one, and without appropriate inclusion of all relevant stakeholders, we cannot be sure that the best interests of dogs will be served. Our partners the Dutch Kennel Club have been working intensely with various groups and have come out with their thoughtful and evidence-based recommendations in the attached breeding strategy document. Thanks to veterinarian Laura Roest for sending us this communication. Dear reader, Enclosed you find the translated proposal the Dutch Kennel Club ‘Raad van Beheer’ has sent to the Dutch Government. This is not a certified translation, but gives us the opportunity to inform the international community. Please feel free to ask questions regarding the document. In March 2019, the report “BREEDING BRACHYCEPHALIC DOGS*" was published in The Netherlands (in Dutch) with enforcement criteria for the breeding of brachycephalic dogs. These criteria were active from that day onwards. The Raad van Beheer concurs with almost all criteria and wishes to adapt them in its own regulations, in close collaboration with the involved breed clubs. The Raad van Beheer does not agree with the Craniofacial Ratio (CFR) as a prohibiting criterion for breeding. This criterion would make it impossible to breed certain breeds while the prognostic value and the reproducibility of the CFR are being questioned among scientists. The Raad van Beheer wants an exception for the regulated pedigree breeding, so these breeds can be bred in The Netherlands in a healthy form and with the effort to achieve a longer muzzle. We hope to receive soon a positive reaction on our proposal from our Government and we will keep the International Dog World posted! Kind regards, Laura Roest, DVM and Gabri Kolster Board Member Raad van Beheer Breeding Commission Dutch Kennel Club ‘Raad van Beheer’ Translated version: English... Breeding strategy brachycephalic dogs in the Netherlands.pdf Also see: background articles/resources: Stricter rules for breeding brachy dogs https://dogzine.eu/en/newsarticle/stricter-rules-breeding-brachy-dogs *FOKKEN MET KORTSNUITIGE HONDEN (Dutch) Fokken_met_kortsnuitige_honden_.pdf Utrecht University posted an article in January 2019... Criteria for breeding healthy short-nosed dogs https://www.uu.nl/en/background/criteria-for-breeding-healthy-short-nosed-dogs "New animal welfare criteria The report Fokken met kortsnuitige honden ["Breeding with short-nosed dogs"] by the Expertise Centre Genetics of Companion Animals outlines a limited number of enforcement criteria and describes numerous additional criteria that can further help vets and breeders to select for healthy parent animals. The report is available Dutch and has been translated into English and German." Internal English - eng_breeding_short-muzzled_dogs_in_the_netherlands_expertisecentre_genetics_of_companionanimals_2019_translation_from_dutch.pdf Internal German de_zuchten_mit_kurzschnauzigen_hunden_-_kriterien_zur_durchsetzing_-_ubersetzung_aus_dem_niederlandischen.pdf
  10. SWEDEN Collaboration and problem solving -- brachycephalic breeds... thanks goes to the SKK for their continued work to address health and welfare issues in dog breeds. Here you will find information pertaining to management of brachycephalic dog breeds - discussion and actions - by representatives from Swedish Veterinary Association, the Swedish Board of Agriculture, the County Administrative Board, the Swedish University of Agricultural Sciences and SKK. Many thanks go to SKK's Linda Andersson for sharing this write-up with the DogWellNet community.
  11. The Extremes of Conformation Theme has been discussed at the Dog Health Workshops held in 2012, 2015, 2017 and 2019. This document provides a timeline-based group of resources available on DogWellNet including articles, blogs and links to plenary presentations from the workshops. brachy - extremes theme - dwn - idhw - 1-4 - timeline.pdf During the past decade a great deal has been accomplished to address health and welfare issues that relate to conformation extremes across breeds. Particular focus has been paid to health challenges present in the short muzzled breeds, several of which have become exceedingly popular in recent years. Efforts have included scientific research, Kennel and Breed Club educational programs, involvements by veterinary associations located throughout the world and governmental approaches to regulating breeds provide an informed view of how extremes can impact health and welfare of dogs - views come from different stakeholder groups. We at DWN are pleased to be a part of sharing information from the Dog Health Workshops as well as other collected resources with the community.
  12. Packer RMA, O’Neill DG, Fletcher F, Farnworth MJ (2019) Great expectations, inconvenient truths, and the paradoxes of the dog-owner relationship for owners of brachycephalic dogs. PLoS ONE 14(7): e0219918. https://doi.org/10.1371/journal.pone.0219918 Abstract Popularity of brachycephalic (flat-faced) dog breeds is increasing internationally despite well-documented intrinsic health and welfare problems associated with their conformation. Given this apparent paradox, greater understanding of the expectations and reality for brachycephalic dog owners and factors driving the dog-owner bond are needed. This study reports a large-scale online survey with valid responses from 2168 owners of brachycephalic dogs (Pugs: n = 789, median age of dogs 2.5 years; French Bulldog: n = 741, median age 2.0 years; Bulldogs: n = 638, median age 2.5 years). The most common owner-reported disorders in their dogs were allergies, corneal ulcers, skin fold infections and Brachycephalic Obstructive Airway Syndrome (BOAS). One-fifth (19.9%) of owners reported that their dog had undergone at least one conformation-related surgery, 36.5% of dogs were reported with a problem with heat regulation, and 17.9% with problems breathing. Despite awareness of their dog’s health issues, 70.9% owners considered their dog to be in very good health or the best health possible. Paradoxically, just 6.8% of owners considered their dog to be less healthy than average for their breed. Dog owner-relationships were extremely strong across all three breeds. Emotional closeness to their dog was highest for owners of Pugs, female owners, and owners with no children in the household. Ownership of brachycephalic dog breeds is a complex phenomenon, characterised by extremely strong dog-owner relationships and unrealistic perceptions of good health set against high levels of disease in relatively young dogs. Perceptual errors in owner beliefs appear to exist between brachycephalic owner perspectives of their own dog’s health versus the health of the rest of their breed, which may be fuelled by cognitive dissonance processes. These novel data improve our understanding of the cognitive processes and relationships that facilitate the rising popularity of breeds that paradoxically are affected by high levels of conformation-related morbidity. Comment: Breeder View This study may be of interest to clubs or breeders who are responsible for educating buyers regarding health concerns present in Pugs, Bulldogs and French Bulldogs. Value exists in educating potential owners of these breeds as to health concerns that may impact owner experiences with their dogs over a given dog's lifetime. The reality is, the dog's ages represented in this survey may have had a some influence on owner assessments of costs of veterinary care and of owner perceptions of time and resources dedicated to caring for their dog - costs and perceptions that may change as their dog ages. It was not entirely clear to me the source of dogs whose owners participated in this survey - in other words from whom were the dogs purchased - show breeders (health tested/conformation evaluated dogs) or other sources. The references listed in this research provide perspective. DogWellNet has collected a number of resources that address the Brachycephalic Issue. The IPFD's Dog Health Workshops have included plenary talks from the Extremes of Conformation theme in which stakeholder concerns over management of health and welfare in brachycephalic breeds and actions to improve matters are addressed. Related article: JAVMA: Owners of brachycephalic dogs are a complicated lot Posted Oct. 9, 2019 https://www.avma.org/News/JAVMANews/Pages/191101h.aspx This article is an easy read and summarizes the study.
  13. The severity of Brachycephalic Obstructive Airway Syndrome (BOAS) is assessed by means of walk tests. With the help of walk tests, individuals with the most severe symptoms can be eliminated from breeding.
  14. Assessment of welfare and brachycephalic obstructive airway syndrome signs in young, breeding age French Bulldogs and Pugs, using owner questionnaire, physical examination and walk tests Authors: Aromaa, M; Lilja-Maula, L; Rajamäki, MM Source: Animal Welfare, Volume 28, Number 3, August 2019, pp. 287-298(12) Publisher: Universities Federation for Animal Welfare DOI: https://doi.org/10.7120/09627286.28.3.287 https://www.ingentaconnect.com/contentone/ufaw/aw/2019/00000028/00000003/art00005# (Internal) Assessment of welfare and brachycephalic obstructive airway syndrome signs in young, breeding age French Bulldogs and Pugs, using owner questionnaire, physical examination and walk tests.pdf Study based on Finnish data... Publication date: August 1, 2019 BOAS signs limit the daily activities of dogs - walk tests performance appears to be a more accurate reflection of tested dog's exercise tolerance than owner's perceptions. Excerpts... "Only four out of 95 French Bulldog and Pug owners reported that the BOAS signs limited the daily activities of their dogs. However, according to the physical, examination-based veterinary BOAS grading, 31/95 of the dogs had moderate to severe BOAS signs. In both breeds, the more severely affected dogs performed both exercise tests more poorly than those with no or mild BOAS signs. The longer exercise, namely the 1,000-m test, seemed slightly better able at differentiating between affected dogs and less affected ones. The results of this study further support the use of exercise tests as an important part of the breeding selection in French Bulldogs and Pugs. By influencing the breed standards set by Kennel Clubs and by using breeding selection tools, the harmful impacts of brachycephaly can be diminished." "By combining information from the physical BOAS assessment, namely the functional BOAS scale, nostril stenosis and exercise capacity, the breeder has the opportunity to make responsible breeding decisions related to BOAS."
  15. I was honored to address the French Bulldog Club of America at their National Specialty in Louisville, KY on October 31st, 2018. The invitation came from the Health & Genetics Committee of the French Bull Dog Club of America (FBDCA). This invitation was prompted by my presentation on the IPFD Harmonization of Genetic Testing initiative at the AKC-CHF Health Conference in St. Louis in August 2017. Jan Grebe, Calvin Dykes and the others on the Committee stressed that the "club is dedicated to Frenchie health, and the harmonization project will be an invaluable resource for breeders". The final presentation, following discussions with the committee, reflected various issues impacting the breed - and I complement the FBDCA on their interest in health and welfare of their breed and in both a national and international perspective. French Bulldogs are challenged by issues including alarming increase in numbers, health concerns related to the brachycephalic condition and scrutiny by veterinary and regulatory groups throughout the world. The FBDCA video-taped the presentation and we have made this available here. It was quite an experience to be in a hotel with about 300 French Bulldogs. The incredible commitment and attachment that Frenchie owners have for these dogs was very evident. I was excited to see information and videos on the increased interest in performance activities for this breed. What a great way to identify and highlight those dogs who are healthy and active. See other relevant resources on brachycephalic issues internationally and coverage of these issues from the 3rd International Dog Health Workshop (IDHW) in our discussion paper. More international actions for health and welfare will undoubtedly be forthcoming following the 4th IDHW in May, in the UK.
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