February 29th, 2012 | Uncategorized | 1 Comment
It really doesn’t seem to matter how much proof there is that “purebreed” dogs are physical wrecks, there continues to be a demand for them. I think most of you will have seen the BBC documentary on the subject, and how the breeders hated that programme! Now there is a follow up, but will it make any difference? You would think so but I’m not so sure. I still receive many enquiries specifying particular breeds ( and almost always young puppies), and while there’s not any dog that I don’t like there are a lot of breeds that I would never choose to have, and can’t imagine why anyone else would either.
The irony of of the whole business is that while people will pay a lot of money to have a dress, for example, that is unique (as in haute couture) those same people will pay extra to buy an off-the-peg dog, just like the one next door and same one that a thousand other people have. Leaving that aspect of purebreeds aside, there is the cruelty of deliberately breeding dogs to have defects that will be painful or even life threatening. Who can really think that German shepherds, with all their beauty and majesty, should really be allowed to pass on bad hips and the other long list of common congenital disorders. Here’s the list: Aortic stenosis, diabetes, haemophilia, keratitis and cataracts, pancreatic insufficiency, cauda equina syndrome (spinal cord) and sudden puppy death. That’s apart from the hips and back legs making many German shepherds virtual cripples. I don’t believe there’s a single breed that doesn’t have a hereditary weakness – or a few – and the only time we really see this in mongrels is if they have inherited the problem from a “breed” ancestor.
There is still the strange idea that mixed breeds are somehow untrustworthy and aggressive, but as I have said many times it’s extremely rare to find a dog that is naturally like this. It’s true, dogs like people are born with a personality, but it’s the way they are treated that can mould that into a loving and happy nature, or turn it into a fear biter. It starts from a very early age, and again it’s exactly the same in human babies. The formative weeks and months of a puppy’s life are vital, and depriving them of company, play, touch and kindness will have a permanent effect. If you smack a young puppy as a way of training you are instilling a fear of humans from the very beginning. Corrective training which involves barking commands, choke chains and physical punishment of any sort is another way to teach a dog that humans are bad. What else could they think when a person who is much bigger than they are scares the **** out of them on a regular basis?
Personally I love the variation in looks and character of mongrels, and the surprise of seeing how they turn out as adults (in looks, I mean). We have seen a lot of very beautiful and unusual dogs that were homed as puppies, and how anyone can say they are in any way less special or valuable than a boring labrador (sorry lab fans, but they are too alike to be interesting to me) is beyond me.
Anyway, here’s the link to the programme and you can judge for yourself :
There’s an event coming up very soon (8th March) that while not being an actual HKDR one is still going to benefit us as one of the nominated charities. The City Fight Club is hosting an evening with a difference; dinner with Mixed Martial Arts fighting. I’d heard that this is now a very popular sport and having recently seen the film “Warrior” I’m now a bit more clued-up about what MMA is. Not to put you off, these are all “white-collar fighters”, men and women who have jobs like investment banking by day, and Supermen (women) by night. “Our” man, Ben “Boom Time” Hartwell (equity trader) is going to be fighting for HKDR so we need as many supporters there as possible to cheer him on. It may not be an ordinary quiet evening out but that’s what makes it exciting and interesting. And as a special deal for HKDR supporters, you can buy a ticket for the usual “whole table” price, that’s $1500 instead of $1800. If you want to take advantage of this special price please let us know so we can confirm you are a bona fide HKDR supporter! Remember the whole event is for charity and your ticket give you drinks, dinner and an evening to remember. Get your friends together and make a night of it. You need to book in advance as there will be no tickets at the door.