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Updated 19.05.23

What is the problem in breeding animals for extreme characteristics?

On this page you will find information on what selective breeding has done to animals. Dogs, cats, rabbits, hamsters and other non-human animals have been bred for favoured (by humans) characteristics that results in disabilities and deformities that cause life-long distress and illness.

Genetic disease is the most common problem caused by selecting for particular characteristics such as a flat face (brachycephalic). Respiratory health is compromised, eating is difficult, the mouth cannot close properly and breathing difficult.

Breeding for large build dogs causes skeletal issues such as hip and shoulder displacement, pelvic imbalance and cancer. Why the latter results from this selection is not well understood.

However, research has found that when one part of the body is selected for exaggeration another part of the body is linked genetically and thus, the animal is compromised from birth.

The two .pdf files will give more information and allow you to decide for yourself if breeders and breed clubs are responsible in terms of animal welfare.

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