No more English Bulldogs and Cavalier King Charles Spaniels. At least in Norway, which lately banned selective breeding of these two dog breeds. The group who campaigned for this law was Animal Protection Norway group, who commented it this way:
"The man-made health problems of the bulldog have been known since the early 20th century. This verdict is therefore many years overdue. For many decades, sick dogs have been bred illegally. What is happening here is a systematic and organized betrayal of our four-legged friends. Today it was finally determined that this is a violation of the law."
The lawyers representing the Animal Protection group also stated, that it was no longer possible to maintain the health of the breeds.
It is true, that both breeds are known to suffer a lot from serious health issues and that those health issues only worsen in recent years. The Bulldog is especially prone to breathing health problems, while the Cavaliers are prone to heart conditions. Both dogs also have other issues, such as skin and eye problems.
So the court basically found it cruel to continue selectively breeding these two dogs, so it decided to ban it. They also mentioned, that the solution might be in carefully crossbreeding these breeds with other healthier, but similar breeds, to lower the health issues.
And even though everyone probably agree that something must be done about this, that something must be done with the bad health of many many dog breeds, it is hard to say if this is the right way how to do it.
This will be only my opinion, but i think it is very questionable if banning the breeding of English Bulldogs and Cavalier King Charles Spaniels will actually end the breeding. Or will it only affect the pedigree breeders who actually had the option to change the breed for the good?
I am aware that pedigree breeder does not mean a good and responsible breeder, but they are definitely better than backyard breeders and puppy mills, who seems not to be affected by this law. And even if they would be affected by the law, did any bans ever really banned something for good? There will always be some underground breeders who only care about quick cash and it will be impossible to stop them. If there will be demand for the breeds, there will always be supply.
Also, it seems, that importing these dogs will still be possible, so it will only affect breeders directly in Norway, but if people will still be able to import these dogs from neighboring countries, will it really help the breed? Will it really lower the health issues of these dogs?
Also, i found it quite weird, why is this law only affecting English Bulldogs and Cavaliers. What about Pugs or French Bulldogs? There are many other breeds that suffer so much from the same health issues, but they are not affected at all by this law. Is it really cruel to breed Cavaliers, but is it okay to breed Pugs? But i guess this might be just the beginning and the law might be extended or amended.
The last thing i have problem with is, that this law and especially the articles online that wrote about this law make it seem, that selective breeding is something bad, something that should be avoided, which definitely is not true.
With the exception of few breeds, such as New Guinea Singing Dogs and similar landrace dogs like that, all the breeds we have today are result of selective breeding. They might evolved naturally in the past, but recently, they are all selectively bred. And most of them do not suffer from serious health issues if they are bred responsibly.
The problem is that today, most often, we dont breed dogs for function anymore, but we breed them for appearance. And if the dog is bred for aesthetic purposes, it can truly be cruel. Today we are breeding dogs that once were amazing hunters, protectors or herders for cuteness. To have large eyes, large head, smaller body and other stuff that is considered cute by majority of people. This can all result into bad health in the breed.
And i am happy to see that some country is actually trying to do something with this problem on national level. But i am not sure, if this will have any impact on the health of these dogs. To be honest, i believe nothing will change until people will stop buying unhealthy dogs, only because they are cheaper.
Dogs are very smart animals that are capable of learning many words from ours, humans, vocabulary. But have you ever wondered how many words dogs actually understand? According to a new study made by Applied Animal Behaviour Science, on average dogs understand 89 words and phrases.
89 words is very specific number, so how was this number achieved? Scientists made this research on 165 dog owners, who were given a list of 172 words and phrases dog could understand. Then they would say, if the dog understand the words or not and they could also add some other words into the list.
When i saw that dogs understand 89 words on average, i was pretty surprised as the number seems quite high, but it is nothing in comparsion to the most talented dog from this research, who understands 200 words! That is impressive! And that is still nothing in comparsion to some of the most talented dogs in the world, who could understand approximately 1000 words! But those are dog geniuses, lets get back to the research and to ordinary normal dogs.
Because the research was made on a small sample, it was impossible to say which specific breeds are the most talented, but the researchers divided the dogs into six types, which you can see on the photo.
I think it is not shocking, that herding dogs understand a lot of words, as they belong into smartest dogs in the world. Toy companion dogs are probably bigger surprise, but again, i think there is easy explanation for it.
Toy dogs are very often all day with its owners and many owners talk to their dogs a lot, which is why they have larger vocabulary than some other working dogs, who probably understand certain commands much better, but they do not understand other words.
So the dog type does affect to some extent dogs ability to understand words. What does not affect this ability is age, sex or the social background of the owner.
The statistics also shown that service dogs and other dogs that are profesionally trained had much larger vocabulary than ordinary dogs. It is only logical that for example service dog for blind people must understand more words than ordinary pet, since it is necessary for its utilization.
Most dogs understand to different commands, names, food, toys and games and to certain phrases, such as good boy or lets go out. TOP 10 words, almost all dogs understand are according to the study these words: sit, come, good girl and good boy, down, stay, wait, no, ok and leave it. I am curious if your dog understand all these words as well! And also tell me in comments what is your dogs favourite word! Does your dog understand some words most of other dogs dont understand? I am curious, tell me in comments.
Of course, the research was made on a small sample of owners, so the number 89 is only indicative. Owners could also overestimate the abilities of their dogs, that would also be natural. But it does show us how much are dogs capable of understanding us, which is probably one of the reasons why they are the most popular animal companions in the world! And not only that they understand us verbally, they also got our non verbal comunnication and they understand our emotions as well. They are just amazing.
We are all familiar with different shapes of dogs noses and snouts, such as flat faced Bulldogs, long snouted Greyhounds or uniquely shaped Bull Terriers snouts. But have you ever seen these double nosed dogs? There are at least three different breeds, the Catalburun, Andean Tiger Hound and Pachon Navarro, for which this kind of a nose is very typical and in this video i will show you all of them.
All of the double nosed dogs are extremely rare and they can be mostly found in their place of origin and even there it is very hard to find them. It is also important to say that not all members of these three breeds must have the double nose, but it is quite typical sign of all these breeds.
Another important thing to mention is, that the double nose is natural for these dogs, they are born with it, it is nothing caused by some accident or injury.
All the three dogs are hunters and it is believed that their unique nose is a reason why they are excellent at hunting, since it gives them superior sense of smell. But since these dogs are extremely rare and there are not scientific evidences about this claim, it is very hard to say if it is a reality or just a rumor.
The first double nosed dog i will talk about is the Pachon Navarro. It is one of the few Spanish Basque breeds and it is believed to be one of the oldest pointers of Iberian peninsula, with dogs similar to them painted in art since the Middle Ages. The breed can be almost exlusively found in Spain and its numbers are estimated on approximately 1000 specimen.
The second breed is the Double Nosed Andean Tiger Hound, a breed that was used by Bolivian hunters to track and hunt Jaguars in Amazon rainforests. For a long time, this breed was considered as a myth, as a legend, but that changed in mid 2000s with photographic evidences made by Colonel John Blashford-Snell. This Bolivian dog is believed to be related to the Pachon Navarro, which were most likely brought to the area of todays Bolivia with the Conquistadors and that over the time evolved into the Andean Tiger Hound we have today.
And the last dog in this video is the Tarsus Catalburun, also known as Turkish Pointer. It is extremely rare breed, originated in Mersin in the southern Tarsus province of Turkey. It is extremely rare breed and it is estimated that there is only about 200 of pure Catalburuns today. Just like the other two breeds in this video, even the Catalburun is excellent hunter, especially known to be amazing at hunting partridge, but it is also loyal, active and loving companion dog.
Dogs are helping us in several important medical areas. The first one are dogs that are directly helping people with disabilities. Those are called service dogs. Then we have the therapy dogs, who are trained to provide comfort and affection for people with different mental ilnesses – for example an anxiety. Next area, where dogs are our big helpers, are so called medical detection dogs, who are for example able to detect some forms of cancer. And lastly but not least we have the dogs in medical research. The fate of these dogs is kinda sad, but they are definitely helping us, the people, because thanks to them, some new drugs have been explored.
Lets start with the service dogs. If you are watching this channel for longer time, you probably know, that i was training a puppy as a future service dog for a blind person. But service dogs are not only helping people with visual impairment. People with hearing impairment, epilepsy, seizures or mobility impairment can also benefit vastly from having a service dog. People with diabetes and post traumatic stress disorders are also frequent owners of these dogs.
The service dog must have good physical and mental characteristics. They must be big and healthy enough to help their owners but they also must have great temperament. They must be patient, extremely trainable, eager to please and pretty loyal. Two breeds, that are used most by far, are Retrievers (especially the Labs) and German Shepherds.
The dogs are helping with various tasks and it really depends on what their owners need from them. They can be leading blind person on different routes (for example to the shop), they can calming down people, they can picking up dropped objects or alert hearing disabled on alarm and bell.
Service dogs are not only helping their owners with the disabilities, they are also helping them emotionally and they are improving their social life. But if you are in need of emotional support, you can also have the therapy dog.
The therapy dog is professionaly trained dog, which is providing affection, comfort and stress relief. They are not only used by individuals, but also by hospitals, retirement and nursing homes or in areas of disaster.
I think all the people who owned a dog will agree, that dogs can help us when we are not feeling well and they just make us happy. So its no wonder that they can help people with real issues, like anxiety and depression. Its proven, that only touching a dogs fur is calming our mind. Dogs are also helping people with depression and anxiety, because they are giving them daily program. They just have to go out with the dog, they have to go feed them. Having a dog will entertain the mind, which is a big help for mental ilnesses.
Now lets talk about the medical detection dogs. Those are professionaly trained dogs to to identify human diseases by sniffing out unusual odours. Dogs have extremely sensitive noses and even though it might sound like science fiction, they are truly able to detect cancer, malaria or neurological diseases from different samples, for example from samples of urine, faecal, and skin swab.
It’s likely that all diseases are associated with biochemical changes that cause changes in odours emanating from our bodies. That is the reason, why the dogs are able to detect these diseases.
But medical detection dogs are also helping as so called medical alert assistance dogs. They are basicly helping people who are having life threatening health problems, especially diabetes and Addisons disease.
The dogs are able to detect small changes in blood sugar levels or hormon related odour changes. When the change is too big, the dog will alert its owner, so they have more time to find proper help or to get their medicine.
And now the sad part of the video, which is about the medical research dogs. As you probably know, not only dogs are used for medical research. This table shows us how many and what animals are used for this purpose in the USA.
Probably the most important scientific researches, where dogs played their role, were the use of insulin to treat diabetes and the discovery of anti rejection drugs for organ transplants.
Majority of dogs used in this industry are Beagles, because of their trusting personality. They are too loyal and friendly to people, that they can be manipulated to doing almost anything.
Most of the people who are watching these videos have dogs and we can not imagine the life without our four legged friends. But for some people, the dogs are more than that, they are literally giving them freedom and in some cases, they are keeping them safe from dying. Dogs are just playing amazing roles in humans lifes.