Don’t buy puppies from pet stores to “save the puppies from being mistreated!!” While this is done with the best of intentions, the puppy mill problem isn’t really about the puppies- the actual puppies are usually treated okay, it’s the parents that are kept in horrible conditions and forced to breed until they die. While you may be giving a home to one dog if you buy from a pet store, you’re supporting the misery of hundreds of other dogs with your money.
USDA certification isn’t a sign of a reputable breeder. It’s actually the mark of a puppy mill and if you see this, run fast in the opposite direction. CKC registration (Continental Kennel Club, not Canadian) is also a huge red flag.
But having AKC registered puppies doesn’t mean they’re reputable, either. While most good breeders (in the US) will have AKC registration, AKC isn’t picky about which dogs they register, so plenty of bad breeders do too. Also, “champion bloodlines” means nothing unless they’re at least in the second or third generations of a pedigree.
Stereotyping breeds is not “like racism for dogs”. Humans weren’t strategically bred for hundreds of years to develop traits to assist them in specific tasks. Dogs were, so retrievers retrieve, greyhounds run, shepherds herd, and terriers fight. It’s not “all in how you raise them”. Genetics. They do stuff. Science. And hey could we maybe not compare the systemic oppression of minorities to people saying chihuahuas are barky? Thanks
Designer breeds i.e. labradoodles, maltipoos, cavachons etc. are not “the best of both worlds!” Again, genetics…that’s not how they work. Also realize that most of these dogs (especially since they are common products of puppy mills) don’t come from well-bred parents because reputable breeders generally don’t allow their dogs to be used to breed crosses. Like I’ve seen poodle breeders literally write it in their puppy contracts that they will take back the dog if they find out it’s being used to create “doodles”.
If you support importing foreign rescue dogs but use the “overpopulation of shelter dogs in the US” factoid to protest dog breeding you’re a fucking hypocrite.
Don’t tell people “you can find any breed in a shelter!” Like ??? Yeah lemme just go find Cesky Terrier at my local humane society! I genuinely have no idea why people say this when it’s obviously not true?
Puppies aren’t a blank slate, and adult dogs don’t all come with awful baggage. If a puppy is genetically predisposed to aggression, all the early socialization in the world might not help at all. And while any adult dog will be shaped by its past, not all rescue dogs are abused and many are there because of circumstances completely unrelated to them and have had perfectly normal lives. You also have the advantage of already knowing their temperament, energy level, and any behavioral issues.
My friend Jude and I weren’t able to think of something productive last Thursday after following up some of our requirements for our internship this coming school year. We weren’t even motivated to have fun and we were totally broke because of the fees we’ve spent for the papers, so we ended up visiting this place.
Hey could you tell us some about cavalier king charles spaniels? I really want one in the distant future but I want to know more about stuff they're prone to and what to look out for. (the only thing I ever hear anything about is the heart valve problem because it's the most common thing)
The heart valve problem is definitely the most prevalent and most concerning condition in this breed, but it’s not the only concern.
Please note the disclaimer. These
posts are about the breed from a veterinary viewpoint as seen
in clinical practice, i.e. the problems we are faced with. It’s not
the be-all and end-all of the breed and is not to make a judgement
about whether the breed is right for you. If you are asking for an
opinion about these animals in a veterinary setting, that is what you
will get. It’s not going to be all sunshine and cupcakes, and is
not intended as a personal insult against your favorite breed. This
is general advice for what is common, often with a scientific
consensus but sometimes based on personal experiences, and is not a
guarantee of what your animal is going to encounter in their life.
Mitral Valve Dysplasia is extremely common in Cavalier King Charles Spaniels. It occurs when one of the heart valves is leaky, allowing blood to flow backwards and each heart beat becomes inefficient. I could explain further, but Richard has already done so very well.
Mitral Valve Dysplasia does occur in other breeds, but it seems to occur much, much younger in CKCS and it seems like 80-90% of these dogs will develop this condition.
You might guess from those floppy, heavy, hairy and otherwise beautiful ears that the breed is prone to ear infections, and you’d be correct. they are not as notorious as the Cocker Spaniel, but they are prone to them.
They are also more prone than average to dental disease, and for some reason I see them particularly affected in the premolars. It’s worth noting that chronic dental disease can worsen heart valve disease over time, so it is definitely worth treating in these dogs, which are already vulnerable.
From a skeletal point of view, luxating patellas are the most common concern, where the kneecaps pop out of joint, and are relatively expensive to treat surgically. They do also get hip dysplasia and tear their cruciate ligaments, but the luxating patellas are more common.
Some of these dogs have particularly unfortunate eyes and are prone to exposure keratopathy if their eyes are particularly bulgy and stick out. This is more of a structural issue than a prevalent breed issue, but it’s worth noting.
Chiari-like Malformation and Syringomyelia have had a lot of attention since Pedigree Dogs Exposed, but I haven’t actually diagnosed a case. There’s not a huge number of dogs that end up in a CT scanner though, so maybe it is a case of not looking hard enough.
I do like these dogs, but I’m so paranoid about their heart health that I doubt I’ll ever keep one.
Something everyone should watch: Pedigree Dogs Exposed and Pedigree Dogs Exposed: 3 Years After.
The idea of judging worth on eugenics and pageantry alone is outdated and wrong. We look at Hitler and his ideals–entirely based in the theory of eugenics and a “perfect specimen”–and we meet him with absolute revulsion. If it’s wrong to subject humanity to a “perfect ideal” then it is wrong to subject animals to the same criteria. Form follows function, folks. Function does not follow form.
The Kennel Club, The United Kennel Club, The American Kennel Club, The Continental Kennel Club, and any Kennel Club that supports an outdated, scientifically unsound idea and uses that idea to promote an image of “prestige” is wrong. Trotting an animal around the ring and calling that work and a pivotal part of judging the “worth” of the animal is wrong.
The more the general public educates itself to what these organizations really are (money hungry boards of absolute destruction), the more we can stand up and say “Enough is a enough.”