The NYT printed an interesting opinion piece in the wake of the two PETA protesters storming the ring at Westminster just before Sadie the Scottish Terrier was selected BIS. The piece is called “Feeling Guilty about Your Purebred Dog.” Liz posted it on her facebook page and I felt compelled to share it here.
Four individuals involved with dogs in some professional manner chime in:
Mark Derr – Author of “A Dog’s History of America”
Ted Kerasote - Author of "Merle’s Door: Lessons from a Freethinking Dog”
Stanley Coren – Professor of psychology and author of “The Intelligence of Dogs,” “How Dogs Think,” and “The Modern Dog”
Francis Battista – Best Friends Animal Society
It’s interesting; when Bug first came home to me I felt a lot of guilt about choosing a purebred over a rescue (again). I *felt* as though some judgment was passed by certain people. I think the judgment I *felt* was mostly of my own construction. I wrote an entire post about it at the time that I never published.
Since then I have resolved my feelings of "guilt."
For me personally, I have specific activities I want to take part in with my dogs (agility & herding). (If I were just interested in competing in agility breed would be less of an issue.)
It is important for me to know what health issues I will face with my dog.
I want the support of a breeder.
I also want to support responsible breeders. Responsible breeders are not the ones populating the shelters. Most responsible breeders will take back a dog no questions asked.
Lest you think I grew up with only purebreds and that is where this stems from….growing up we had about 50/50 in terms of rescues and purebreds: 2 purebreds (GSD & Beagle), 1 purebred rescue (GSD), 1 backyard mutt (Lab x GSD), 1 rescue mutt (BC x who knows what). None of them had unusual health issues. Our first GSD was put down due to cancer and the last mix/rescue was dysplastic and ended up dying of cancer at 13+ (and she was a BIG dog).
I support rescue. I think it is incredibly admirable and selfless that people devote themselves to rescue and choose only to rescue. However, for me I think it is more important to know the origins of my dog on multiple levels and to have the support of a breeder. I would certainly consider breed rescue in the future.
This is my opinion.
What is yours? I think this is a pretty loaded topic and could make for some really interesting discussions.
4 days ago