Canine Research Grants 2012
The Australian National Kennel Council’s (ANKC) Canine Research Foundation has announced research grants awarded for 2012.
The grant money will be utilised to conduct research into:
Q Fever, a bacterial disease with serious symptoms for dogs and one that can be transmitted to humans, so this research will benefit both species.
Drug-resistant urinary tract infections in canines.
Developing a way to specifically target canine tumours, which will pave the way for research beneficial to all species affected by cancerous tumours, including humans.
The cause of epilepsy in dogs (and therefore new treatments). The first stage of this research has been funded by a university grant, and the CRF grant will fund the second stage of the research.
For full details of what this research will entail please visit the ANKC website
$1 from every pedigree puppy registered in Victoria is donated to this important foundation.
American Staffordshire Terrier - Tracking Star
Zforce Sweet Surrender, or "Jessie" was advertised as being free to a good home. Her owners said she was destructive and they were finding her difficult to train.
When Lisa Staszek read the ad she knew the 18 month old American Staffordshire Terrier would be perfect for her family as they already had another dog of the same breed and age that they adored.
“We already had our Amstaff boy Dezzy and trained him with the Ballarat Dog Obedience Club so we knew that Jessie would be welcome there too,” said Mrs Staszek. “The club is fantastic and has never discriminated against our dogs for their breed. They are registered, pedigree dogs, well bred and extremely well socialised.”
Lisa’s 11 year old daughter Tamika bonded to Jessie immediately and began working with her to train in obedience and compete in Tracking competitions. She found Jessie was easy to train and eager to please her new young owner.
The pair has now earned two “very good passes” in the sport, a bragging right that even experienced competitors in the sport envy.
“It just goes to show that every dog is trainable,” said DOGS Victoria President Peter Frost. “Some can be more challenging than others, but with good instructors and the right attitude any dog can become a well-trained pet that is a pleasure to have around.”
Some breeds are easier to train than others and DOGS Victoria suggests undertaking thorough research before purchasing a puppy to ensure that the breed you choose will suit your age and stage of life and fit into your family in terms of cost and time it will require. See our pages on Choosing the Right Dog for more information.
Farming Puppies for Profit
DOGS Victoria supports the RSPCA in a campaign to stop dogs being used by uncaring people operating puppy farms in Victoria.
“DOGS Victoria promotes the responsible breeding and ownership of dogs,” says the president of the not-for-profit organisation, Peter Frost. “The DOGS Victoria code of ethics is very clear on this: breeding should not be done for commercial purposes or profit, but rather to improve the breed’s function, health and temperament.”
This problem must be approached from both ends: the producer and the consumer.
DOGS Victoria and the RSPCA advise purchasing a puppy from a reputable breeder or adopting a pet from a shelter or rescue organisation.
In addition to educating consumers, DOGS Victoria has been in discussions with the state government to legislate against these high-volume breeders.
“DOGS Victoria has its own strict code of ethics,” explains Mr Frost. “We encourage the government to use this as a model, holding all dog breeders in the state to the same high standards of DOGS Victoria registered breeders.”
DOGS Victoria believes this will reduce the over-supply of dogs and puppies in Victoria, ensuring that every puppy begins life in a positive, loving environment and every dog spends its life in a loving home.
Photo courtesy of DOGS Victoria
Pedigree Dogs Make the Best Pets
Dog owners the world over were buzzing with the BBC show "Pedigree Dogs Exposed", shown in Australia on ABC, calling into question the ethics and practices of purebred dog breeders in Australia.
Quite contrary to what was implied in this show, ethical, responsible breeders are working together to create healthier dogs that make better pets.
The Australian National Kennel Council requires certain breeds to undergo heritable disease tests as a prerequisite to mating. Additionally, many breed clubs throughout Australia have their own required breeding practices determined from careful and ongoing scientific research.
“Yes, dogs of certain breeds are more prone to certain genetic problems,” said Peter Frost, President of DOGS Victoria, “but by facing the reality of those problems and developing responsible breeding programs, breeders of pedigree, purebred dogs are taking positive pro-active steps toward eradicating the problems. Australian breeders go to extremes to import semen for artificial insemination as well as entire animals to ensure their breeding lines remain varied, strong and healthy.”
Too often, breeders of non-pedigreed dogs, crossbred dogs and so-called “designer” dogs do not test for heritable diseases. This isn’t because diseases don’t exist in these animals. It is simply because the genetic combinations make for an unknown risk of diseases. By choosing not to test for any disease, these breeders are turning a blind eye to potential problems and allowing them to continue to pass from one generation to the next in a genetic lottery.
The major health problems seen in dogs across Australia, therefore, are not in the pedigree, purebred dogs.
DOGS Victoria has been working diligently with the state government to introduce groundbreaking new legislation last year that makes it an offence to sell or give away a dog with a heritable disease. They are continuing to work together to develop a code of practice and more specific guidelines for managing heritable disease and creating a future full of healthy, happy family pets.
ANKC Media Releases
Please visit the ANKC Media web page to download official ANKC media releases.
Previous DOGS Victoria Media Releases
Dog attack response - 18 August 2011
Government Lobby on Puppy Farms