The selective breeding for 'cuteness' has been heavily criticized by animal welfare groups. This includes the popular French Bulldogs and other similar breeds, such as English bulldogs and Pugs. Many people think those are just traditional-looking dogs with short muzzles but in fact, they changed a lot compared to their original appearances.
The Australian Veterinary Association (AVA) banned breeding and showing dogs with muzzles shorter than 1/3 of their skulls. These dog breeds often suffer from a condition called Brachycephalic Obstructive Airway Syndrome (BOAS), which causes them to struggle for breath during even minimal activities. Since Frenchies, English Bulldogs, Pugs, and Boston terriers are among the most popular pets in the world, unreliable breeders found a perfect opportunity to earn money. They decided to produce ‘cuter’ versions of these dogs with shorter muzzles and a result is a growing number of unhealthy dogs.
Brachycephalic Obstructive Airway Syndrome is difficult to heal health condition that doesn’t allow a dog to live a normal life. Dogs with BOAS can’t exercise, sleep, eat, and do all those stuff that healthy dogs do. Besides, they are incapable to regulate their body temperature because their nostrils are too short and narrow.
So-called ‘backyard’ breeders also deformed the corkscrew tails in Pugs. Unlike Frenchies that have no tails, Pugs are on a higher tendency to suffer from spinal and neurological problems due to this feature.
Is there a light at the end of a tunnel?
Fortunately, the RPSCA thinks there is hope for all those deformed pooches. The damage can be remedied by crossbreeding extremely flat-faced dogs with other breeds with longer muzzles. In that way, deformed Frenchies and Pugs will try to get back to their original appearance from 50 and more years ago. The cruel trend of producing unhealthy pups didn’t end here. Cavalier King Charles Spaniels are also victims of backyard breeders who reduced the size of their skulls to look cuter to inexperienced buyers. The result is less space for their brains, health issues with vision, severe headaches, and dizziness.
Australia is not an isolated case. Norway banned English bulldogs and Cavalier King Charles Spaniels for the same reason. The case was even taken to court by Animal Protection Norway. That’s why it’s extremely important to choose a reliable breeder when buying a puppy. Regardless of the breed you want to buy, scammers are everywhere. Please, don’t be fooled by the low price. French bulldogs, Pugs, and all other dog breeds have the right to be bred healthy. Thanks to the Australian Vets Association and Animal Protection Norway, this is a historic verdict that attracts international attention.