For release : 5th June 2019
RAIN RESCUE WANTS TO RAISE AWARENESS OF FLAT FACED PETS
South Yorkshire based animal Rain Rescue wants to raise awareness to the public about the problems flat faced pets like Pugs, French Bulldogs and Persian cats are dealing with due to poor breeding.
The rescue which takes in over 400 dogs and cats every year is seeing a rise in the number of these types of animals entering their care and wants the public to be aware of what it means to own one of these breeds after it rescued Edna, a 1 year old French Bulldog who required major surgery when it was found she had narrowed airways and a dropped palate meaning she struggled to breathe properly.
Lauren Sanderson, Deputy Charity Manager, said: “In the last 12 months we’ve taken in three French Bulldogs and a Persian cat who all had what is known as ‘brachycephalic’ breed related health issues - from poor breathing, eye disease, dental problems and skin infections . It may not sound a lot but in Rain’s 17 year history it had only cared for one French Bulldog before this. Edna is also the second dog we’ve had to treat with surgery for poor breeding, the other was a Pug. ”
"Frenchies and Pugs are more popular than ever but sadly the public and those buying puppies do not realise the consequences. It’s often considered normal for these breeds to snore and snort but it isn’t, this is the effect of breeders choosing looks over health. In extreme cases this can mean they need corrective surgery like Edna did. Not only is this a huge thing for the animal to go through it’s can be very expensive, sometimes costing thousands of pounds."
The British Veterinary Association states that last year 93% of companion vets treated flat faced dogs for breathing problems, demonstrating the extent of the problem within the UK. They recently launched their #BreedtoBreathe campaign to get the message out to dog owners to think about choosing a healthier breed or crossbreed instead of prioritising appearance over welfare.
Just last week Holland’s Pug Club banned the breeding of pugs with a nose less than a third of the length of the skull to try and improve the health of the breed.
Lauren continues "Thankfully Edna has now got the treatment she needed, has been adopted and is doing much better, but sadly her breed related issues are not completely over - she still suffers from ear infections, another common issue in these types of dog.
We want to encourage anyone thinking of buying one of these breeds to really do their research, and know what a healthy pet looks like - or better yet adopt. It really is the public that have the power to make things better. We are also pleading with breeders and breeder clubs to change what they look for as desirable. To continue to breed these animals to have shorter and shorter noses and smaller skulls really is so cruel.”
To make a donation to Rain Rescue to help dogs like Edna and the other animals in Rain Rescue’s care please send cash or cheques payable to ‘Rain Rescue’ to Summerfield Lodge, Moat Lane, Rotherham, S66 1DZ or text ‘BARK1/2/3/4/5/10’ to 70500 to donate from your mobile, texts cost your donation amount + standard network charge. Alternatively visit www.rainrescue.co.uk for more information about the work they do.
Notes to editors:
Rain Rescue was founded in 2002 and has saved the lives of thousands of animals to date, primarily dogs at risk of being put to sleep in local authority stray kennels as well as cats and kittens abandoned on the streets. They are also there to support pet owners in times of crisis such as those facing financial difficulties, eviction and bereavement. Receiving no government or lottery funding means they rely solely on the generosity of the public to continue their vital work.
Viewings for animals are by appointment only. Centre not open to public.
For more information from the British Veterinary Association visit : https://www.bva.co.uk/news-campaigns-and-policy/policy/companion-animals/brachycephalic-dogs/