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Breeds and Breeding

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Part of the Animal Welfare book series (AWNS,volume 4)

Abstract

There are several hundred breeds of dogs and they are usually categorised according to function. Many of these dogs are now companion animals and do not engage in what they were initially bred for. Pedigree dogs used for breeding are registered by a kennel club. Most dog breeders have one or two breeding animals and they try to produce puppies that meet the breed standard for physical and behavioural characteristics. Some of the breed-standard physical characteristics are extreme and may cause welfare problems. Inbreeding and line-breeding have tended to increase the incidence of hereditary diseases. Emphasis on physical characteristics may have led to breeders paying insufficient attention to behaviour. The physical and behavioural characteristics of some breeds make them unsuited as companion animals. There is now a more definite effort being made to reduce the incidence of hereditary diseases in some breeds but the costs of developing and using diagnostic tests may make it difficult for breeders to utilise them effectively. Genetic counselling for breeders is a major development in veterinary science and will hopefully reduce hereditary disease while maintaining breed characteristics. Minor changes in the physical breed standard of some breeds could have significant effects on the welfare of pedigree dogs.

Keywords

  • Companion Animal
  • Labrador Retriever
  • Kennel Club
  • Cocker Spaniel
  • Breed Standard

These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.

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  • DOI: 10.1007/978-1-4020-4362-8_3
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© 2007 Springer

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(2007). Breeds and Breeding. In: The Welfare of Dogs. Animal Welfare, vol 4. Springer, Dordrecht. https://doi.org/10.1007/978-1-4020-4362-8_3

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