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Archive for the ‘animal welfare’ Category

clint eastwood

It’s often said you can tell a lot about a person by who his or her enemies are.

Or to put it another way:

“When a true genius appears in the world, you may know him by this sign, that the dunces are all in confederacy against him.”

–Jonathan Swift

It’s no secret that I have exposed the dog fancy’s sins time and again on this blog, but generally the main perpetrators of  the crime have either been too ashamed to bother with my piddling piece of work.

Or they are of that generation that has no idea how to turn on a computer.

The only thugs I’ve ever dealt with are the bulldog mafia, but their arguments are so bad that they are nothing more than a minor nuisance.

If I had a dime for every time I got the following argument from bulldog owners, I’d be pretty wealthy man. It goes something like this:

My bulldog is entirely healthy! You’re mean!

Lots of data to work with there, eh?

I’ve written much more scathing posts on other breeds, especially Neapolitan mastiffs, a totally fantasy breed that its fanciers swear is the ancient war dog of the Roman legions.

It is, of course, nothing of the sort. It was created by a Swiss writer named Piero Scanziani (he was Italian-speaking Swiss), who wandered around Southern Italy after the War and began collecting farm mastiffs. As a writer of religious fiction, Scanziani wrote a fiction that these dogs were somehow connected to the ancient war dogs of Rome, and the ideas he expressed wound up gaining currency with many nouveau riche Europeans, who  began flocking to Southern Italy in search of a “real Roman war dog.’

And the Italians began to breed dogs solely for this market, and it wasn’t long before some of these local dog dealers began to select for very extreme traits– excessive skin, hanging eyelids, and massive size.

And moronic Northern Europeans and the North Americans bought into the delusion. The Romans actually had a freakazoid dog with a litany of health problems to serve them in war.

I don’t know who would think such a fiction possible, but the Neapolitan mastiff fanciers certainly do.

Which leads me to the attack I received today.

I woke up this morning to several bizarre comments that I absolutely would never approve on this blog.

If hell were frozen over, I would never approve them. They included several personal attacks on other people who had commented on the blog. I guessed that this person had watched too much Fox News and thought that was how we do business on this blog.

Wrongo.

I banned the comment-maker.

And it normally ends there. I probably have to do this maybe twice a year, but normally I don’t hear anything back from these people.

But not this time.

Around noon today, I received an e-mail threatening lawsuits and calling me an idiot, which is to me the sign of someone with a severe mental disorder or a chemical dependency problem.

The person in question was Anne Latimer Goetz, a Neapolitan mastiff breeder, a science-denier, and a Grade-A Moron.

I need to tell Ms. Goetz something.

Apparently, she thinks she can get her way by bullying other people and screaming like a banshee.

Others, I guess have cowered away from her.

Well to quote Walt Kowalski in Grand Torino:

Ever notice how you come across somebody once in a while you shouldn’t have fucked with? That’s me.

Ms. Goetz has had the gall to ask me to retract a blog post.

For real.

Me?  Retract a blog post?

In your dreams!

This was the e-mail I received:

I have a photo of the internet posting that states that MY image of Magic standing on a rock by a river, is your original photo on retrieverman.whatever your blog is…..

Print a retraction.

Anne Goetz

Centurian Mastini

I’m sorry, Drama Queen.

We don’t roll that way.

If you don’t like what I write, then tough shit, Princess.

Not only does she have the temerity– that’s a big word for cajones– to demand that I retract what I wrote about freakazoid breeding Neapolitan mastiffs.

She has no moral authority to stand on.

None.

0.

Let me show you:

See, this crazy bint has her own blog.

A blog that, unlike this tome, has very little readership.

It’s called Neo News, and it’s very revealing about Neapolitan mastiffs and the culture of their breeders.

The most recent blog post is lamenting the death of a dog she produced. It died of osteosarcoma at the ripe ol’ age of three, and it’s full of woo and science denial.

We kept trying to get the pup back, and when we finally did, his joints were RUINED, btw, he was diagnosed with elbow dysplasia, by Dr Allen, who asked, as we had done, that the puppy be off the concrete! And, she advised high quality food, and medications, and supplements, and the Garcias ignored every one of her recommendations. So,this poor puppy stayed in these conditions for about 6 months. Outside, on concrete, Ole Roy food, no supplements.

We sent a friend to meet Mr Garcia when he finally decided to return our puppy and wait for another litter, (yes, I told him I would replace Blue. I would have done anything to get my dog away from these assholes) And, Mr Garcia met my young, pretty young female friend, and he was so sexually suggestive in his convesation [sic] and interactions with her, that she was frightened. And, the vet records he supplied, were actually, the vaccines we had given Blue prior to our shipping him, to them!!! He received no vet care at the Garcias, until we insisted he be taken to Dr Allen.

Blue is no longer with us. I blame the Garcias. I have to wonder if they are to blame for Moose’s death, also.

So, no, we did not supply them with another male to ruin. And, it won’t happen. Yes, they did take us to small claims court, and we told our story, and the court found against us.

The object of this post, is that we are warning anyone with a litter of neo pups to avoid the Garcias of New Jersey, like the plague.

In that blog post, she blames a dog’s death of osteosarcoma– a cancer with a very strong genetic basis— on vaccines, diet, and keeping the dog on concrete.

But the truth is the reason why the dog died of osteosarcoma is because it was the breed it is.

And a breed is only produced by a breeder. Concrete, vaccines, and cheap dog food won’t make a dime’s worth of difference.

And anyone who tells you otherwise is not a vet.

And it’s not just people like me, who hate the dog fancy, who have problems with Ms. Goetz.

It turns out that she is a dog dealer of the worst sort. On the Spanish Mastiff blog, she is attacked for being an inbreeding apologist and a person who crates her dogs too much. She also produced a litter of Spanish mastiffs, and she found out that she couldn’t sell them for exorbitant prices, so the poor mastinos would be living in cramped cages without enough access to food or water.

Now, it can be debated on what kind of condition the mastinos were in, but I can tell you that Neapolitan mastiff breeders, who are “breeding to standard,” as if that were some sort mission from God, have absolutely no moral authority in the world of dogs.

They continue to produce dogs with ectropion and entroprion. Dogs with bad hearts. Dogs with a very high incidence of cancer. Dogs that spend their entire lives in misery.

Dogs that die before they are 7 years old. It’s very telling that there has never been a dog longevity study on this breed, but most vets will tell you that these dogs are not long-lived. The Kennel Club (of the United Kingdom) did perform some longevity studies on its breed. The median age of death for Neo mastiff is a ripe old 2.33.

That’s pathetic.

But don’t blame the dog breeders, like Anne Goetz.

They are doing their best to “improve the breed.”

By “improve the breed,” they mean “win dog shows.”

And the other part of winning dog shows is to truncate and concentrate the gene pool as much as possible.

It’s pretty obvious to anyone with two or three functioning brain cells that Neo mastiff conformation isn’t healthy, but when you start paring away all that genetic diversity– not that there was much to start out with– you’re playing with fire.

This is the tragedy of the modern dog fancy, It allows scum like this to thrive, when they should be ostracized as much as possible.

In fact, if the AKC, KC, and FCI were worthy of the name of institutions that truly cared about the future and welfare of dogs, they would deep six the entire Neapolitan mastiff breed until someone with a bit more empathy or brains takes the helm.

This is a breed created because of fantasy, and its breeders live in a fantasy world in what is objectively objectionable is celebrated as virtuous.

There is no moral authority here. There is only claimed authority.

And there are too many totalitarians in the world of dogs for this sort of authority to go unquestioned or allowed to run amok in the already compromised gene pools of our domestic dog breeds.

So Ms. Goetz, my advice to you is to find another hobby.

You can continue to lambaste me on Facebook. Among the other things this child attacked me for was the fact that I am single.

I am single by choice.

I am happy as a single person, and I cannot think of anything lonelier than to be a relationship with a person who is totally wrong wrong me.

So if my regular readers can forgive me for my somewhat stroppy post this evening, please understand that the dog fancy has too many people like this.

They very rarely get to me. Otherwise, I’d stop writing about these issues.

But in the face of a cowardly internet bully who argues like a Fox News commentator, I have to turn upon the jackal as a good leopard must.

And do a bit of savaging.

Now, back to your regular programming.

***

Ms. Goetz is also one of those dumbass breeders who thinks that “incest is best.”

Check out the pedigree of the dog above, which she bred.

Click to make larger.

Click to make larger.

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Photo from Robert Milner's Retriever Training Site. The golden is a Holway.

Photo from Robert Milner’s Retriever Training Site. The golden is a Holway.

The Westminster Kennel Club Dog Show has come and gone, and like most years, I thought we’d have no meaningful discussion about how dogs might be encouraging people to breed and select for unhealthy attributes in dogs.

However, this year, there is a bit of a viral story going out about how preferred phenotype in the show ring might be deterimental to a dog. But unfortunately, it’s very low hanging fruit.

The story started with this pretty good post from My Slim Doggy  about how fat the Westminster Labradors actually are. And I should note that yes, these dogs are fat, and the behavior of the dog show apologist set on that page is abominable. 

That’s a story in itself, but it’s not the absolute worst case I can think of.

The thing about Labradors is that they are the most popular breed in the United States, Canada, and Great Britain, and they are probably the most common “breed dog” in the world today. They are also arguably among the most useful dogs, for they not only are used for retrieving game, they are now the most common guide dog breed. They also great sniffer dogs, and they use to assist people in wheelchairs. There are many, many things this breed can do, and because the typical member of this breed is also among the most docile of dogs, they are very, very popular as family pets.

As a result, they exist in many, many different lines and what might be called “sub-breeds.” There so many different types of Labrador that it would take me too long to describe them all to you, and then I’d probably miss a bunch.

Labradors that are bred for the show ring are an extreme minority of the breed. And as a result, what happens in the ring really does not affect the survival of the breed as a whole.

And not only that, even if a Labrador has a tendency toward portliness, this problem can be easily remedied through a regime of diet and exercise.

So if the biggest problem that Labradors have from being shown is that the show specimens are a often quite fat, this is not such a big deal.

And the simple reality is that the Labrador breed is not a prisoner to the show culture. You can easily get a Labrador that is not a “labrabeef.” And it’s not that hard.

The real scandal is the countless breeds that are.

Within that Sporting group, there is actually very good example of a dog that has essentially been doomed to extinction through selection for a very exaggerated phenotype.

Unlike the Lab, it’s not a very common dog at all. In fact, unless you’re a dog nerd like me, you may have never heard of it.

The breed I’m talking about is the Sussex spaniel.

The Sussex spaniel is doomed. It cannot be saved. You can write it on a rock. It’s done.

The Sussex spaniel is the last survivor of a stupid fad that swept the early British dog fancy– the desire to breed extreme dwarfism in spaniels.

Sussex spaniel

The Sussex spaniel has an illustrious history as a land spaniel in the South of England, but then dog shows got their mitts on them and things haven’t been the same since.

The two most common fancy spaniels in the early British fancy were field spaniels (which were usually black or black roan) and the Sussex, which was liver. Both of these dogs are ancestral to the two breeds of cocker spaniel that exist today, both of which descend from a Sussex/field cross named Obo. Before that, all small sporting land spaniels were call “cockers” as a generic term.

The fad was to breed them as short-legged as possible, and in some situations while doing beating on relatively flat ground and in heavy cover, a dwarf spaniel would have have been of some use.

But the twentieth century has largely supplanted both the field and Sussex as gun dogs. English working cockers and springers are the sporting spaniels of the UK, and in the US, main sporting spaniel is the working English springer. Welsh springers are still worked, and they have a lot going for them, too. And if the right celebrity were to own one, they could suddenly experience a popularity rise that they might not be able to handle.

And there are even working strains Clumber spaniel, which have bred out most of the exaggerated mass and loose eyelids that you see in the ring.

Field spaniels have been saved through the addition of English springer blood, and they are no longer dwarfs.

But the Sussex remains.

Col. David Hancock writes about the fate of the Sussex:

The history of the breed standard of the Sussex Spaniel tells you a great deal about show gundog fanciers. The standard in use in 1879 didn’t include words like massive, brows and haw or mention a rolling gait. In 1890, in came ‘fairly heavy brows’, a ‘rather massive’ appearance and ‘not showing the haw overmuch’. In the 1920s, in came ‘brows frowning’, a ‘massive’ appearance and ‘no sign of waistiness’ in the body. These words were approved by the KC, the ratifiers of all breed standards. In 1890 the breed’s neck had to be ‘rather short’; from the 1920s it had to have a long neck – in the same breed! The need for this breed to walk with a rolling gait is, relative to the long history of this admirable little gundog breed, relatively recent. Here is a breed of sporting spaniel, developed by real gundog men,subsequently, with the connivance of the KC, altered to suit show dog people, most of whom never work their dogs. It is a sorry tale, with echoes in other breeds.

The so-called ‘Chocolate Drop’ spaniels of Richard Mace have their admirers in the field. Originating in a cross between a working Cocker and a Sussex Spaniel, they are seriously effective working spaniels, strong, biddable and determined. In the last ten years, pedigree Sussex Spaniels have only been registered in these numbers: 89, 98, 70, 82, 68, 79, 77, 74, 61 and most recently 56. What would you want? A dying breed prized for its unique rolling gait, characteristic frown and waistline-free torso? Or a proven worker benefiting from a blend of blood? Gundog breeds which lose their working role soon lose their working ability and then the patronage of the shooting fraternity. I see much to admire in the Sussex Spaniel and long for a wider employment for them in the field.

I would love it if those “Chocolate Drop” spaniels became part of the Sussex breed and reinvigorated it.

But that is not going to happen.

Having written about Sussex spaniels before, I have rarely met with more obtuse dog fanciers than those associated with Sussex spaniels.

Too many of them are part of the blood purity cult, and the breed is also caught up in the double speak of “dual purpose” breeding that I so often encounter in gun dogs.

You will often hear people who have a rare gun dog breed brag about how their breed hasn’t split in type like golden and Labrador retrievers have.

The reason why golden and Labrador retriever have split so much is that they are actually used quite a bit, and the dog shows require parts of the phenotype that are largely antithetical to efficient movement on the land or water. The excessive coat in show goldens makes them easily bogged in the water, and the lack of soundness in many show Labs makes them easily worn out while doing retrieves.

These minority breeds, though, exist within a culture that is obsessed with the Delusion of Preservation.

Part of that delusion isn’t that you must keep the breed pure at all costs.  Within rare kennel club-recognized breeds, there is also a delusion that you have to show in order to breed. The standard make the breed unique, and if you really want to preserve it, you have to test it against the standard.

The problem with standards is they are like scripture:

They are written by fallible people and by devious people, and they are then interpreted by fallible and devious people.

So these very rare breeds become trapped in the show culture.

And though people are using the dogs at tests and working events, they aren’t selecting for those traits alone.

But working springers and cockers are.

And there is absolutely no way that Sussex spaniels can survive this situation.

No redneck hunter is going to go out and buy a Sussex when he can get a springer from working lines for third to half the cos and no waiting list.

But Sussex spaniel people are still trapped in the hope that it might change.

But it can’t.

This is now a show dog that is trying to be preserved within the show system itself.   Fewer and fewer people want this dog, and fewer people know that it even exists.

And whatever the merits the breed might have, it’s just not going to make it.

And then you have its very real problems as a breed:

Not only is it the gun dog with the rolling gait, it is also the only gun dog I know of that has problems with its discs (a common dachshund malady) and a very high incidence of hip dysplasia– 41. 5 % are affected according to the OFA.

Would a serious gun dog person go out of his or her way to get a dog with those sort of structural problems?

They would take their chances trying to slim down a fat Lab!

Obesity in show Labradors is discussion worth having, but it’s not the biggest problem with dog shows.

Labradors are not trapped. They are thriving as no other breed ever has.

But the dog fancy really is destroying breeds

It’s just that it’s not destroying those breeds that have a life outside of the fancy.

With this going on with breeds like the Sussex spaniel, it makes all the attention we’re giving to obese Labradors seem a bit trivial.

Dog shows really aren’t that important to the breed population of Labrador retrievers, but they are the main constraint facing the Sussex spaniel.

And this is where the Sussex will go extinct.

I don’t know when, but it is almost certainly going to happen.

It’s trapped, and no one is saying anything.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Because I’m a prick, that’s why.

i don't always eat giraffe

marius sacrifice

 

Denmark Zoo Kills Giraffe

 

hyenas eat giraffe

 

free rye bread!

Marius the giraffe

You can use the memes as you’d like.

But you might just be going to hell with me!

 

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marius feeding the lions

I must have missed something along the way to learning how to care for animals, but maybe I didn’t.

I remember when I was a little boy asking my parents why my grandparents killed their young roosters (the technical term is “cockerel”) and left the young hens to survive (the technical term is “pullet.”)

Every year, their flock of mixed meat and egg chickens would have a ton of chicks. The foxes and raccoons got a few.  And others got fried.

Almost all the fried ones were cockerels, not pullets.

As a juvenile male with an inquiring mind, I asked why such a fate always befell the young males.

My parents explained to me that the reason why the young roosters became dinner is because a farm doesn’t need many roosters. If it has too many roosters, all that will ever get done is crowing, fighting, and hen-chasing. If you want to manage the flock better– have the hens lay nice eggs and get nice and fat– you cull the young roosters.

And I thought that people understood this concept.

Well, as I’ve started writing about animal welfare issues, I’ve noticed that many people don’t get it at all.

Take the great outrage of this past week:  The Copenhagen Zoo’s decision to cull a young male giraffe to prevent inbreeding in their herd.

I’ve notice most of the outrage comes from the United Kingdom, a place where there is a sort of animal rights cult that runs deep into the body politic. I don’t know where it comes from, but I, as an American, find it absolutely bizarre.

That’s not say that the US is AR-free. The state of California is full of this sentiment, and I’m sure you could find people whining about hunting somewhere.

But in the US, this is the fringe.

I suppose in Denmark, it is too.

That’s because in the real world of animal husbandry, things are not always nice.

Animals die. Animals fight. Animals get sick. Animals get hurt.  Animals need culling.

In dogs, we cull all the time. We just don’t call it that. We call it selling it to a “pet home only.”

In farm animals, the animals culled are the animals that become food. The animals with the best traits are kept back for breeding, and this is how we’ve been able to breed productive meat animals.

Reputative zoos are really farms, but unlike the farms we have to produce meat, these farms are engaged in a different kind of breeding. It’s actually the exact opposite of the kind of breeding that has been so lauded in breeding dogs over the years.

In dog breeding, the main goal has been to breed from top performing or winning stud dogs in order to spread their genes throughout the breed. It’s madness, if you ask me, because it leads to more and more inbred populations and attendant gene loss.

Zoos are trying to do the exact opposite. The goal of a zoo breeding program is to retain as much genetic diversity as possible i their breeding populations.

Now, this makes sense, even for species that aren’t endangered.  If the wild population of a given species suddenly becomes rare and genetically compromised, zoos that have maintained healthy, genetically diverse populations will be able to use that genetic diversity that they have set aside to save the species.

Zoos that breed this way are the genetic savings accounts.

A lot of the misunderstanding of the death of Marius comes from a misunderstanding of conservation breeding, and it also comes up against another piece of the puzzle:

The Copenhagen Zoo does not do contraceptives. In Scandinavia, almost all dogs are kept intact, and I believe in either Sweden or Norway, it was actually illegal to spay or neuter a dog as an elective surgery.

In the zoo situation, they keep their animals intact, so they have a full complement of hormones and relatively natural social structures. That means that females and males are going to mate whether the mating makes sense for the purpose of conservation breeding or not.

I don’t have a problem with this attitude. It makes quite a bit of sense for the welfare of the animals involved. They get to live complete and full lives.

However, the question of what to do with the surplus offspring is not a trivial one. Historically, zoos sold their surplus animals to private owners. This is one reason why there are so many tigers in the US, and it was also a major source for the canned hunting industry.

Many argued that the Copenhagen Zoo should have just allowed Marius to go to another zoo, but if that zoo isn’t part of the same breeding network, it would not make sense to allow Marius to become part of  it.

The zoo in Yorkshire that offered him a home sounds like a possibility, but it’s not a viable option. Let me explain:

These reputable, accredited zoos all support each other. Smaller zoos can go under– and many often do. If something were to happen to that Yorkshire zoo, there could be a chance that poor Marius could wind up sold to a circus or put in a canned hunting operation.

I don’t think Marius’s biggest supporters want that to happen.

So euthanasia was the best option.

Marius was killed with a rifle shot to the head. That is precisely how we kill cows in West Virginia.

He was then given a public dissection, which resulted in the British animal rights activists sneering at the Danes for doing such a thing. I mean it’s not like the British would ever show a giraffe dissection on television, would they?

Of course, after Marius was dissected, he was fed to the lions. The poor lions probably have never tasted giraffe flesh before, and in the wild, it’s pretty rare for a lion to kill a giraffe. But if they didn’t feed Marius to the lions, they would just have to feed them some domestic meat, which was slaughtered just as humanely as Marius was. In this way, you could almost think of Marius saving the lives of a few cows that would have had to have been killed to feed the lions.

But now the zoo is getting threats.

Are you kidding me?

I don’t understand this. I guess I learned something when I was five years old that ton of people never have learned.

Animal husbandry isn’t pretty. Sometimes, things must die for the greater good.

I feel very sorry for Bengst Holst and his staff. He’s trying to do what is right for the animals, and all these bleeding hearts who claim to love the animals are screaming for his head.

It’s kind of like the Animal Rights Tea Party.

The animal rights movement has done nothing for the conservation of our planet and its biodversity. It is simply a movement of fanatics who refuse to listen to reason.

I have no use for them. I don’t think they really help animals in the long term, and if their demands were adhered to, we would see utter collapse of ecosystem after ecosystem and the extinction of countless species.

Animal husbandry requires both empathy and reason. Without reason, empathy can often do as much harm as good. Without empathy, the animals just won’t be cared for properly.

The problem is too many people are obsessed with the empathy side of the equation.

And it’s not helping at all.

***

Here’s a clip of Bengt Holst trying to speak some reason to an antagonistic British presenter:

Source.

***

I still am having a hard time understanding the British animal rights movement:

You had more protests over a badger cull than you did over austerity.

There is something very pathological about that.

And I say this as someone who might be better called a “hard-core leftist.”

But I don’t get this stuff at all.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Simona, Kali dog’s human, sent me this photo of a dog dealer’s shop in Kathmandu.

nepalese dog shop

She says that the the shop usually has little fuzzy bichon/poodle-type dogs available in the store, but you can order a golden retriever or German shepherd pup from the store’s catalog.

This is Nepal, a country that occasionally has a Maoist government take over (through elections of all things), but they allow this bit bourgeois decadence to go on.

And don’t be smug.

You can still find shops like this in the US, and at one time, they were very commonplace. As recently as 20 years ago, every pet store sold puppies.

And we still have mass-production facilities for puppies.

It’s just in Nepal, it’s still politically correct.

 

 

 

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Source.

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madness and stupidity bulldog

What I am about to suggest is something rather extreme.

I wouldn’t have deliberately plagiarized Lenin in the title if I were to write something somewhat milquetoast and banal.

But right now, there is a major welfare problem in the world of dogs that I don’t think can be solved with gentle suggestions and politically correct language.

One must be blunt and clear about the problems and the solution.

Right now, I would argue the biggest welfare problem facing domestic dogs in the West can be found in a single breed of dog. I choose  to take on this breed not because other breeds are without problems. I choose it because there is no breed with as many problems occurring at once, and in the United States, it is sadly becoming even more popular, despite it being well-known that these dogs have very real issues.

And the problem is even further exacerbated when one discovers that well over 90 percent of the breed’s fanciers have their heads shoved squarely up their arses. They live in a fantasy world in which deformities are actually assets, where they live in the delusion that their dog is tougher than all the rest, when it is indeed perhaps the most fragile.

The breed I’m talking about is the bulldog.

The bulldog is the old baiting and butcher’s dog of yore. A creature much ballyhooed for its legendary courage, which eventually made it a symbol of the British Empire.  It is the canine John Bull, and one sort of gets the impression that much of the breed’s current phenotype is really nothing more than attempt to turn much more lithe old bulldog into a caricature of that patriotic figure.

This breed has a lot of health problems and not a single one of them is new. This breed was messed up within twenty years of becoming part of the “dog fancy,” and as it became more and more extreme, there was actually a robust debate about bulldog health even back then.  Perhaps most famously, there was a bulldog “walking race” in which the very “typy” dog wound up positively knackered within a mile.

These dogs have problems breathing and cooling themselves efficiently– which tells you they couldn’t possibly be used to bring down an animal the size of a bull! They problems with infections resulting from their inverted tails. The dogs are so top-heavy that they cannot mate without people holding them or the use of a breeding rack, and in the US, many are produced through AI. Almost all bulldog puppies are delivered through C-section, and the breed has the highest percentage of dysplastic hips, according to OFA hips.

And those are but a handful of the problems this breed faces.

And they’ve been going on and on for a century without any degree of improvement.

But there is now another problem that is coming to the fore:  This breed is now among the AKC’s most popular.

They have been popularized on “reality television,”  and every young idiot who watches too much TV wants one. They are so cute!

This is such a difficult dog to breed that the puppy mills have had a field day with them. They can charge much higher prices for these dogs than all the other mass-produced breeds and crosses. They will sometimes add a bit of boxer to their bulldogs to make them easier whelpers and then dock the puppies’ tails to make them look pure.

So we have a breed that is utterly screwed by its own fanciers and then is getting it double from the really ugly underbelly of the pet market.

Both of these systemic problems mean that it is going to be very hard to help this breed.

It is simply madness and stupidity all around.

This is not to say that there aren’t some good bulldog fanciers out there who are trying to moderate the breed, and there are dozens of breeding programs out there that are trying to produce an “old-fashioned” bulldog.

But these people are fighting an uphill battled against an entrenched idiocracy.

With so many things going against this breed, how can it be saved?

The thing is, I don’t think it can be– not unless there is a very strong cultural revolution against the powers that be.

We must stigmatize anyone who buys this breed as a pet.  We must not be nice about it.  If you buy a bulldog, you are participating in the deformation of a dog. You are encouraging people to breed unhealthy freaks. You are encouraging the misery of living things, and these living thing suffer every breath they take. In this way, the breeders of the extreme bulldog are worse than dog fighters. Dogs that are bred for fighting suffer. It’s certainly true. However, they don’t spend their entire lives struggling to oxygenate themselves or keep themselves cool.

If you are breeding bulldogs as they currently are, you are worse than Michael Vick.

If you measure the amount of suffering each type of cruelty, the bulldog breeder is encouraging far more than the dog fighter.

And what’s more, there is nothing illegal about what the bulldog breeder does. Indeed, what a bulldog breeder does is celebrated!

It is evil that is not seen as evil, and to steal from Hannah Arendt, it is evil that is banal.

People accept the suffering that bulldogs undergo because it is institutionalized and legitimate.

And it is this legitimacy that we must attack at its core.

The dogs deserve so much more.

The radical step is to say that this breed must stop. If it cannot be put on the road to healthier phenotype, then the breed must be stopped.

I would hate to see it go this far, but it may wind up that all bulldogs will be required by law to be spayed or neutered unless put into a breeding program designed to select for a healthier phenotype.

I wouldn’t want to see this happen, but it seems to me that there is very little that be done to stop the madness.

But at some point, this is where this breed is headed.

And in the end, all dog people of conscience have to say stop.

No more.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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