What do dog breeders want from vets?

The BVA are debating this meaty topic at their congress, but I suspect they'll not be touching all what Pete the Telegraph vet is blogging about. Click here for the full version.
Here's an extract!

When I spoke recently with Jemima Harrison, the producer of BBC’s “Pedigree Dogs Exposed”, she told me that she was disappointed that she could not be there herself today. She said that that she’d heard that the draft title of the talk was “What Breeders Want From Their Vets”, and that this had prompted her to come up with the following suggestions:

* To carry out Bulldog Caesarian sections, with no questions asked.
* To cull ridgeless Rhodesian Ridgebacks and those with dermoids (an inherited defect) with no questions asked
* To carry out surgery to correct the inherited inturned eyelids of Sharpei dogs, with no questions asked
* To agree to not submit that very high hip score - or to suggest, after a preliminary examination, that a hip test might not be a good idea
* To not report cosmetic operations to the Kennel Club
* To not point out that they shouldn¹t be breeding from that dog with a serious inherited problem
* To not point out that the extreme conformation of their dog is not in the dog¹s best interests
* To not suggest that their dog has syringomyelia. After all, don¹t all dogs scratch?
* To not think that vets are in any way qualified to comment on dog breeding
* To stop recommending that people should buy cross-bred dogs
* To greater embrace reproductive medicine so that those dogs that wouldn¹t be able to breed naturally can pass on their genes. (After all, it will guarantee income for vets for generations to come.)

It’s an interesting list: whilst there are many good dog breeders out there who’ll be incensed at any suggestion that they’d want their vets to behave in such ways, the sad truth is that until vets take a hard line (or are made to take a hard line) on all of the above issues, there’s unlikely to be any quick fix to the problem of inherited disease in pedigree dogs.


jo siemieniowski said…
I agree completely ! at one time you took whatever the vet said to you as the honest truth, and the best advise that could be given, such a pity that some vets conform to the wishes of the breeders now, luckily my vet is one of the old school, and does what is right by the pet.
Anonymous said…
i have defended your views (as well as j harrison's) in the past, but this latest contribution from the filmaker is just ridiculous.

how dare she lump all of us into the category of cheats, liars and bad animal keepers.

if jemima was actually enthralled in the day to day work that is required to breed and raise healthy happy dogs, then i might give her more credit.

as it stands, she is just trying to make a ££ at the expense of those who DO put health first.

how absurd.
Anonymous said…
reall appalled that you saw fit to include this dribble on your blog.

thanks for another blow below the belt to those who work hard to make a difference.
Beverley Cuddy said…
Yikes Jemima has hit a nerve here!

Think we all know that there sadly are people who do want their vets to do such things. What we need is for vets to say no!

The good breeders should be asking for this even more loudly rather than moaning about Jemima bringing up a touchy subject!
Anonymous said…
touchy? if you call blatant mischaracterization of an entire group of people a touchy subject, then i see where you are coming from.

jemima, like yourself, profits (how much so financially and how much so egotistically i am not certain) by these inflamed comments.

sad that you drag everyone down with these jibes. shame on you beverly.
Anonymous said…
sounds more like Jemima hasnt had her monthly "fix" of seeing her name in the national press more than her actual concern for dog welfare.
Anonymous said…
I shall be reading the full article but I have to say I agree with the points she has raised. There are too many vets out there with an eye on the money and to hell with the consequences.

If you see it for what it is, she is not lumping all the breeders into one, but clearly marking out the comments for those who do no justice to their respective breed and dogs as a whole.
In the pink said…
Better for JH to be positive and say what dog breeders DON'T want. They want vets who are honest and put the dogs welfare before £ signs. Sadly in the 'sueing society' we live in maybe vets can't always be as honest as they'd like to be???
Fair enough. But what do pet owners want from their vets?


* Never, ever, mention that little Emma is morbidly obese and headed for an early grave. A prescription for sensible diet and regular exercise is oppressive and mean.

* Do not under any circumstances notice that King is treated like his namesake and not only has no manners, but has "bite people who annoy me" on his short list of daily options. Pretend that a catch pole, three techs, two muzzles and a squeeze cage are normal equipment for an ear-cleaning. A referral to a trainer is not appreciated by His Majesty.

* Refrain from any semblance of judgment when I appear with my sickly puppy-mill (you call them puppy farms) purse dog that I just had to have, 'cuz it's the latest trend. Smile and agree that she's the cutest lil' morkie-poo ever, and spare not a thought for her trembling, shit-covered parents.

Ah, I could go on ...

When I sit in my vet's waiting room and watch the human zoo, I am glad I am not a vet.
Beverley Cuddy said…
What do pet owners want from breeders might be a good question...

Reliable temperaments
Good socialisation/early training
Every effort to prevent health problems
Lifetime of aftercare

Perhaps if someone started giving accolades out for those qualities we'd all see the way forward!
Wouldn't breeder shows be interesting where the pet owners judged them!
Maybe Dogs Today should launch such a competition?
Anyone got any breeders they'd care to nominate as role models?
Email me your suggestions.
Best of Breeder, sounds like a competition to me!
Beverley Cuddy said…
Oh and by the way Sirius, I can see you! Was out and about yesterday so posting comments on a Blackberry standing up in a crowded train didn't much appeal... so I let you go un-outed!
bet hargreaves said…
If it had not been for Jemima Harrison's PDE TV Program ,would any notice been taken by many Dog Breeders ,and they would still be Breeding from Unhealthy Dogs.

Bet Hargreaves
bet hargreaves said…
Would any notice have been taken by many Dog Breeders Breeding from Unhealthy Dogs ,if it had not been for Jemima Harrison's PDE TV Program .?I think Not.

Minds are sure being focused now, particularly since there is a possibilty that a Breeder can be being Sued ,if they have sold a Puppy ,that Puppy developes a Health Problem known to be in the Breed ,and the Breeder has not Health Tested for that condition.

Bet Hargreaves

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