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Vets raise concerns about show dog health at Crufts
A number of vets raised concerns about posters on the bulldog stand, particularly one that claimed: ‘The biggest reason for bulldog caesarian sections is lack of out of hours veterinary care’.
Bulldog posters criticised for showing inaccurate information 

Vets and animal welfare campaigners have voiced concerns about the health of dogs with exaggerated features at Crufts this year.

TV producer and journalist Jemima Harrison, who directed Pedigree Dogs Exposed in 2008, tweeted photographs showing the exaggerated features of best of breed winners for the pug, bulldog, French bulldog and Neapolitan mastiff categories.

A photo of the St Bernard best of breed showed a fractured upper right second incisor, among other issues.

Jemima also raised concerns about ‘brachy-creep’ in breeds such as St Bernard’s and even border terriers, whose muzzles appear shorter when compared to historical photographs.

Commenting on the show, which took place from 8-11 March, TV vet Mark Evans tweeted: ‘‘If you love dogs, don’t watch #Crufts’. Well said @deborahross It isn’t all bad but the freak show ‘beauty pageant’, and the perverted K9 eugenics that underpins it, is unforgivable in the 21stC. Surely we can come up with a better way to celebrate man’s best friend. #muttimesup’.

Bulldog Caesarians
A number of vets also raised concerns about posters being displayed on the bulldog stand, particularly the claim that: ‘The biggest reason for bulldog caesarian sections is lack of out of hours veterinary care’.

In response, Cat The Vet tweeted: ‘ALL vets in the UK provide emergency cover for their patients, there is no ‘lack’ of out of hours here!’

Simon Doherty, junior vice president for the BVA, said he had contacted the Crufts vet on the evening of 10 March, ‘who took immediate action to see that this was removed’ before the following morning.

‘We will consider whether any further follow up is necessary. #AStrongVoice ForVets,’ he added in a tweet.

Once the poster was removed on Sunday morning (11 March), it was replaced by the following statement:

‘Many Bulldog Breeders can and do self whelp their pups. However [according to a 2017 survey] the number one reason for fear of having puppies out of their regular vets hours was that they would prefer to go to their normal vet rather than risk having to visit a vet with no history of their dogs if they needed an emergency c-section.’

Breeding concerns
The RSPCA also tweeted information on the numerous health issues affecting different breeds being showcased at Crufts. While it praised some elements of the show, such as the less exaggerated breeds being shown and positive advice given on neutering and buying puppies responsibly, the charity criticised Crufts for discussing exaggerated features in a positive way.

A tweet by the charity read: ‘Very disappointing to hear the #Crufts commentary talking about exaggerated features like short faces and twisted tails in a positive light. These features can cause pain and suffering to animals and should not be celebrated.’

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Charity reveals it treated thousands of pets with dental issues last year

News Story 1
 Battersea Dogs & Cats Home has revealed that its veterinary team performs dental procedures on more than 170 animals every month. Last year the charity says it extracted hundreds of teeth from more than 800 animals and carried out thousands of routine scales and polishes.

To combat the problem, Battersea is urging pet owners to get regular dental checks at their vets, implement a daily oral care routine, feed a good dental chew and only give toys that are designed for dogs, including gentle rubber toys that are less wearing on the teeth. 

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News Shorts
Voting opens for RCVS council elections

Eligible veterinary surgeons can now vote in this year’s RCVS Council elections. Four out of the 10 candidates are already on council and are standing for re-election: David Catlow, Mandisa Greene, Neil Smith, Susan Paterson. The remaining six candidates are not currently on council: John C Davies, Karlien Heyman, John Innes, Thomas Lonsdale, Matthew Plumtree and Iain Richards.

Further information on the candidates can be found on the RCVS website: