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LETTERS TO THE EDITOR

Issue: 24/01/2020

Disappointing

What a disappointing letter from Ali Wilde in response to my criticism of the experiments carried out on dogs by the Emory university in Atlanta.
She may possibly be right in suggesting that the dogs could have become ‘gently acclimatised’ to the noises made by MRI scanners, but this would have taken an inordinately long time before the experiments could begin, and it’s doubtful if the university would have taken that time.
She states as a fact that “there is absolutely no force involved” as if she was present.  In fact, force would be the only option to prevent the dogs from moving, as the slightest movement would render the scan unusable.
You only have to look at highly trained Obedience dogs during a five minute down stay. Most of them have occasional wriggles, fidget about, and virtually all of them look around them.  The slightest movement of the head would totally negate the scan, and the only way movement could be completely prevented is by tying them firmly and tightly to the bed of the scanner.
Such scans can take anywhere between 20 minutes and an hour, and can in no way be compared to the few seconds it takes her to put drops in her own dog’s eyes.
No true dog lover could agree with such actions, and Ali Wilde’s defence of such abhorrent treatment of dogs is as bad as the university’s actions in conducting the experiments. Also, as I said in my original letter, it was not even for medical research but for a completely pointless purpose.
Yours etc
Roy Wheatley

Come on breed clubs

AT THE moment there are many established owners/breeders showing concern about the lack of interest in the average owner,  with what is felt to be a lack of support and the breed  being run for the few.
After being associated with a breed I love for many years (GSD) I am really surprised that there has been a decline in support for new owners, whatever breed they may have chosen.
We all pay a fee to major clubs to be able to learn about  our chosen breed, also to get encouragement and possibly participate in things which hopefully would encourage responsible dog ownership.
In many cases if one does not follow the new pasttimes which are participated  in by major clubs one appears to be isolated. (things such as general Obedience - Competitive Obedience and Working Trials) but in my particular one  finds that the few tend to be encouraged to do Schutzhund etc. Not all wish to do this.
Newsletters and events for  average dog owners seem to be on the decline and encouragement is lacking. Support at open and champ shows is also dwindling, as well as Obedience and Working Trials and at present the Good Citizens is suffering, as many clubs no longer appear to support this.  A  sad state of affairs.
In return many a show is not supported in the way it used to be. I can remember even when classes were split in both Show and Obedience, and exhibitors  often were seen doing run offs in car head lights! Even if the entry appears to be well supported very few (sometimes none) appear to take part.
What actually do we pay for when joining a club? Surely it is not too much to get a monthly news update and possibly, if more events were run, support would increase. Unfortunately this appears not  to be the case. Now is the time when requests for dues arrive - the question being what do I gain for being a member??
 We also see that there is a lack of show results appearing  in OUR DOGS, now the one and only dog paper. Championship Shows in my own breed have been two in the last month, but as yet not reports. One does wonder whether some judges cannot be bothered or are embarrassed by the entry number eventually attending....or just cannot or cannot put into writing why the places have been given?
Yours etc
Name and address withheld

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