Purebred community monitors canine health issues
I am writing in response to the recently published letter “Dog show promotes an unhealthy business,” [Northwest Voices, March 12].
The responsible breeders and owners that exhibit at dog shows aim to preserve and improve the health, temperament and longevity of the breeds they dedicate their lives to. Breeders are most concerned with finding loving, secure homes for their puppies, not how much money they will make.
The letter writer’s assertion that “mutts are much healthier” is incorrect. In fact, there is no comprehensive study of genetic diseases in the general population of dogs. The purebred community scientifically monitors canine health issues, but at this time, there is no such corresponding or comparative effort concerning mixed breeds or dogs in general.
There are now over 60 screening tests that responsible breeders can employ to ensure their dogs avoid illnesses. The American Kennel Club is the only all-breed registry that incorporates health-screening results into the permanent records of all the dogs we register.
AKC dog shows as well as other AKC events like Agility, Obedience and AKC Rally® (which welcome all dogs, purebred or mixed breed) strengthen the human-canine bond and provide a lifetime of enjoyment to many loving owners and their dogs. We encourage the letter writer to learn more at akc.org.
–Lisa Peterson, director of communications, American Kennel Club