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Pedigree dogs subject of new Working Group

FOLLOWING THE controversial BBC documentary Pedigree Dogs Exposed the Associate Parliamentary Group for Animal Welfare (APGAW) is forming a working group on the welfare of dogs.

The group will consider the health and welfare implications on dogs that are bred to certain standards in the wake of the TV programme which focused on health problems in dogs resulting from the practice of ‘inbreeding.’

The Kennel Club have been invited to the group’s review but have voiced fears that the Working Group will be tempted to concentrate solely on pedigree dogs rather than dog breeding in general.

The call has prompted many breeders and exhibitors to ask that this is not just centred on pedigree dogs, and that to be even-handed the group must target cross breeds also.
KC spokesperson Caroline Kisko said: ‘We are aware that APGAW is intending to carry out a review of dog breeding.

‘We are concerned with the statememnt which gives the impression that this review is to be aimed at the breeding of pedigree dogs only.’ Ms Kisko continued, ‘It is critical that the breeding of all dogs should be reviewed - not just that of pedigree dogs, since both crossbreeds and mongrels can suffer health problems,’ added Ms. Kisko.

The KC plan to attend the review and encourage all dog breeders to air their opinions on the matter.

‘All dog breeders are ... in a position to comment and should feel free to do so.’

APGAW Chairman Eric Martlew MP has expressed his delight that the group has responded positively to the issues raised by the documentary and by welfare organisations.

‘It is extremely important that we establish what health and welfare implications there are on pedigree dogs bred to certain set standards, and then have informed and considered recommendations in place to ensure their future welfare which can be presented in a report to the Secretary of State,’ said Mr Martlew.

The deadline for written submissions will be in December. APGAW will publish a guideline as to how these should be presented in due course. In the meantime, if you have any queries please contact Marisa Heath at The Pedigree Dog Working Group, APGAW, C/o Eric Martlew MP, House of Commons, London SW1A 0AA or on Tel 07736 899547.