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French bulldog set to become ‘most popular breed’
frenchie
New figures show there were 21,854 French bulldog registrations in 2016.
Registration figures prompt ‘welfare crisis’ concern
 
French bulldogs could soon overtake Labradors as the UK’s most popular dog breed, according to the latest Kennel Club registration figures.

Popular with celebrities including the Beckhams and Leonardo DiCaprio, French bulldogs are currently in third place, after Labrador retrievers and cocker spaniels. If current trends continue, the breed is on course to take the top spot by the end of 2018, unseating Labradors for the first time in 27 years.

New figures show that in 2016 the Kennel Club registered 21,470 French bulldog puppies, 33,856 Labradors and 21,854 cocker spaniels. This represents a 47 per cent increase in the number of Frenchie registrations from 2015-2016 alone, and a staggering 3,104 per cent increase in the past 10 years.

However, the Kennel Club figures account for just 30 per cent of the UK’s total dog population, meaning the number of French bulldogs in the country is likely to be far higher, including dogs that have been imported illegally from Eastern Europe.

There are concerns that the breed’s popularity is rising as a result of celebrity fashions rather than its suitability for owners. Animal welfare charities are already seeing an increase in Frenchies coming through their doors.

“French bulldog welfare services are getting more and more dogs through their doors, so there is a genuine concern that we could be facing a welfare crisis if their numbers keep increasing,” commented Jackie Mavro-Michaelis, secretary of the Pennine and Scottish French Bulldog Association.

Caroline Kisko, Kennel Club secretary, added: “The breed is a favourite with celebrities, who often flaunt them on their Instagram and Twitter accounts for people to coo over. While it’s normal to want to show off your dog, when celebrities do it, it usually results in a surge in the popularity of certain breeds, which is not a good thing as it opens the doors to unscrupulous breeders who see it as an opportunity to breed lots of them without due care to health and welfare.”

Would-be dog owners are being urged to do their research and consider other breeds that may be more suited to their lifestyles. For those intent on buying a French bulldog, choosing a responsible breeder or considering a rescue dog is crucial if they are to avoid contributing to an impending welfare crisis.

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New DNA testing scheme for the Russian black terrier

News Story 1
 A new DNA testing scheme for juvenile laryngeal paralysis and polyneuropathy (JLPP) in the Russian black terrier has been approved by The Kennel Club.

JLPP is a genetic disease that affects the nerves. In affected dogs, it starts with the nerve that supplies the muscles of the larynx leading to muscle weakness and laryngeal paralysis.

To find out which laboratories the Kennel Club is able to record results from, and which labs will send results direct to the Kennel Club, visit thekennelclub.org.uk.

 

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Feline art marks 90 years of Cats Protection

Sussex-based charity Cats Protection is hosting a prestigious art exhibition to mark its 90th anniversary.

More than 200 paintings provided by members of the Society of Feline Artists will go on show at the charity's National Cat Centre in Chelwood Gate (28 April - 7 May).

"Art enthusiasts, students and cat lovers alike will all enjoy the exhibition, and we hope it will also inspire some of our younger visitors to get sketching," said Cats Protection's director of fundraising, Lewis Coghlin.