The Dutch dog breeders’ association is taking steps to improve the health of pedigree dogs, in particular by ensuring they don’t have problems because of their extreme appearance, broadcaster Nos says on Thursday.
Vets will be present at all dog shows from 2016 and will make their own judgements about ‘best of breed’, alongside the judges, Nos says. The aim is to have eradicated health problems caused by physical deformities such as very flat noses and multiple skin folds by 2024.
The association’s plan, entitled Fairfok, or ‘fair breeding’, was presented to junior economic affairs minister Sharon Dijksma on Thursday.
From 2018, pedigree dog family trees will be able to apply for Fairfok approval, which shows the breeding has taken place with appropriate consideration for the behaviour, health and welfare of both the parents and puppies.
There are between 1.5 million and 1.8 million dogs in the Netherlands, of which around 500,000 are pedigrees.
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