Last night Pedigree Dogs Exposed aired a review of any changes made in the three years since they first showed what really was happening at Crufts. I think the fact that the RSPCA and Dogs Trust pulled out of sponsoring Crufts really shows how bad things have really gotten for a number of breeds in England because of the guidelines of what a breed 'should' look like. By the end of the programme I was speechless.
One breed mentioned was the Cavalier King Charles, which some have now branded as 'doomed' due to the amount of Cavaliers possessing certain medical problems such as heart murmurs and Syringomyelia (SM). As an owner of a Cavalier I was both angered and deeply upset by a number of stories, such as one Cavalier (who had actually won a number of awards at Crufts) had sired HUNDREDS of litters with the owner having the knowledge that their dog suffered from SM.
Dalmatians are known to suffer from a severe problem where they cannot break down uric acid, which eventually would cause their bladder to rupture if it could not be unblocked. A solution has been found for dalmatians which have been breed with Pointers to eliminate this issue. There is some hope for Cavaliers though, the kennel club will be launching MRI screening for SM, where those looking for a Cavalier puppy can check to see if their parents have been screened and what the result of the screening showed.
It doesn't take a degree to realise reducing genetic diversity causes a whole array of problems. The thought that the Cavalier King Charles may not be here for generations to come to enjoy with their amazing temperament and beautiful nature is heartbreaking.
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