Monday, 19 December 2011

Bred for looks, born to suffer: pedigree dog health and welfare

Imagine what a wolf looks like. Now conjure up an image of a pug. Very different, aren’t they?

The pug, like every dog, is descended from the wolf.

I think we’re so used to seeing the many breeds of dog available today that we just accept the problems they suffer due to their short legs, long backs, large heads, or other exaggerated feature.

But if you compare these dogs to their ancestors it’s obvious that nature didn’t mean them to have the flattened faces and wrinkled skin that for some reason we humans find so endearing.

We shouldn't be allowing this to happen.

Dogs have been bred for the way they look over many centuries and lots of them – and in particular pedigree dogs – are now vulnerable to unnecessary disease, disability, pain and behavioural problems.

The RSPCA has launched a new campaign, Bred for looks, born to suffer, in order to raise awareness of the issue.

TV presenter and dog trainer from the hit TV show It’s Me or the Dog Victoria Stilwell agrees that dogs shouldn’t be bred solely for the way they look and has recorded a message of support for the RSPCA’s campaign.

We've also created a new hard-hitting press ad:


I think this says it all.

To add your voice to the campaign, please sign up at

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