I am surprised and disappointed that Our Dogs has one again allowed Archie Bryden to spout his, in my opinion, bigoted and totally unsubstantiated opinions on homeopathic medicines, although at least this time he has said nothing about herbal treatments. At least he has learned one lesson, but here he is once again, attacking something about which he knows less than nothing, with no evidence, no examples and nothing but personal opinion.
His favourite phrase when arguing (which he does regularly) is "put up or shut up." Surely this should be said by the victim to the attacker, not the other way round?
For instance, if someone criticised Mr. Bryden's dogs, he would expect them to say why. He would ask for evidence, and would again be saying "put up or shut up" and yet that is how he ended his last letter on this subject, when he was the aggressor and the manufacturers of medically licensed products, not to mention many thousand of dog owners around the world, were his victims. We are not interested in his personal opinion on this matter, we know what works for our dogs, so it is up to him to try to prove himself right.
Until he has some evidence he really should shut up and stop making himself look so foolish.
There are some anomalies in the letter quoted last week by Beverly Cuddy from Michael Gove. It is disingenuous to say the very least.
For instance, while there is no doubt that the new regulations coming in this year will have some positive effects on a range of issues the fundamental problem will remain for his statement that 'everyone involved in the breeding of dogs will now need a licence' although not inaccurate in itself is nevertheless misleading for there is an exemption for 'hobby breeders'. Having been involved at every level in the debate surrounding the several attempts to solve what has become a long-term breeding conundrum, my experience leads me to the conclusion that there will be many 'hobby breeders' who should be licensed who will find ways around the legislation.
On a related subject, may I draw your attention to a website helpful to both breeders and those looking for a puppy. It is a not for profit community: the National Register of Pedigree Dog Breeders (www.ibreedpedigreedogs.uk
). The site has been set up under the auspices of the Animal Care College. Registration is free after signing up to the Code of Best Practice although there is an option to place more information on each breeders' page for a nominal annual fee. The site also has advice for new owners (which includes a free short course on acquiring a puppy) and a generic puppy contract. Information and advice for breeders can be quickly circulated and all suggestions as to ways in which it may be improved are welcomed.
David Cavill FRSA
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