Monday, November 09, 2015

Can the Bulldog Be Saved?

In January 2009, Adam Goldfarb of the Humane Society of the United States told The Augusta Chronicle that bulldogs are the “poster child for breeding gone awry.” Studies have found that some modern breeding practices — including inbreeding and breeding for “extreme traits,” like the massive and short-faced head of the bulldog — are detrimental to the health and welfare of dogs.

A healthier breed of bulldog might look like the dog on the right:
A) short snout made longer; B) skin folds reduced;
C) body made leaner; D) tail elongated; E) hips widened.
One former bulldog breeder from Tennessee said:
 “Most can’t have sex without help — they’re too short and stocky. Most can’t give birth on their own — their heads are too big. A breed that has trouble doing those two things is, by definition, in trouble.”
Many say that unless kennel clubs and bulldog breeders accept a leaner standard for the breed the quality of life for bulldogs will remain compromised. David Levitt thinks he might have the answer. Through crossbreeding he has developed the Old English bulldogge, an athletic breed that looks similar to the bulldogs of 1820 but also has a friendly temperament.
More: The New York Times

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