Agree that it would be great if someone came up with a scheme breeders would actually use. :lol: So far every scheme anyone has come up with seems eventually to be opposed when it is revealed that results will have to be transparent or that it will; actually cost something. I will be amazed if the European scheme can raise enough from breeders who already complain bitterly about paying for the BVA scheme, at a level that would sustain this one. But sure: I'd advocate submitting scans and test results, absolutely.
But I remain pretty sceptical of this scheme.
According to this newsletter this remains a private pilot scheme, not supported in any offocial way by the FCI that I can see (?), it is just mentioned in the newsletter as a private initiative:
Who thinks the UK has a monopoly on cavalier health projects? Many of the longest standing research projects are international. Much of Clare Rusbridge's work has been based on international collaboration with clubs and individuals in the UK, Canada, Holland, Ireland, South Africa, Finland and Australia in two different breeds with a high incidence of SM (just to name the ones I can think of off the top of my head).
The project can be considered as a pilot project. It is a private initiative set up by breeders from several countries working close together with Universities, genetic people, vets, judges etc.
Rupert's Fund has funded scans in at least three countries though it may well be several more by now. And the groups we work with -- For the Love of Ollie, Cavalier Collection and Cavalier Matters -- all have funded research in several countries, raising 5 figure sums in two separate countries, for projects in several countries. (I do not think the breed clubs in either of the same countries have given as much as these two funds from private, pet owning individuals towards SM research. I would love to see a challenge fund from the clubs to match these private funds!).
Several significant projects have come from and continue to be done in the US and Canada. Not from 'breeders taking the matter in their own hands' either but from breeders working with researchers and pet owners.
I absolutely mistrust several of the statements that have come from Belgium, on this project. The idea that pet buyers no longer have to worry their confused little heads because this private breeder-based initiative (warning! warning!) will mean they only have to look at a privately issued certificate for tests they never get any evidence for, is exactly NOT what puppy buyers should accept, ever.
The tone of the whole newsletter just about says everything though.
I and millins of others certainly hope so -- clubs and breeders should be held to account on breeding decisions and claims about their lines when there is the amount of knowledge about SM and MVD and their spread now. Hmmm though -- in what country on earth so far has the 'population been different' and therefore rate of affectedness been different? Answer: NONE. Cavaliers are all so closely connected. But nice to imply a loophole for less ethical breeders to claim they have less-affected populations.
After the BBC programme “Pedigree Dogs Exposed” the canine world will never be the same again. The media and governments will continuously put demands on pedigree dog breeders and Clubs.
Seriously? "Sadly enough"? Sad for the breeders and puppy sellers, perhaps, but not for openness in breeding practice, pressure being exerted to create a healthier cavalier, or awareness in the puppy buying public who still are routinely told 'there is no SM in my lines (or MVD)... by breeders who don't test. The number of breeders sites and breed club sites which have little to no information on SM or MVD is astonishing at this point. At least the UK club site does.
Thanks to the scientists investigating the diseases we know more about the CKCS and its (hereditary) diseases than several other breeds. Sadly enough this made the CKCS an easy target for the media which had a devastating influence on the way people look at the CKCS.
The reason that the Dutch clubs agreed to the SM scanning scheme is that they faced a court case that could have made this mandatory or severely limited breeding. It was not a sudden rush to help the breed centered in the club. The clubs had a good indication that their future was in trouble unless they took such a step.
The best line of all. "Champion culture"? And how is this remotely different from what most breeders do right now? How could knowing EBVs possibly, possibly make the situation worse than it is? Just how many current show dogs are from just ONE popular sire right now in the UK, for example? :rolleyes:
When introducing EBV’s in a breed, there is always the risk that breeders will only use the dogs with the best EBV’s (= Champion culture). This will lead to exclusion of valuable dogs and finally result in narrowing the breeding pool with the famous bottleneck as a result.
It is odd that not once has the Belgian initiative ever mentioned that this approach for cavaliers was pioneered by UK researchers however and with scans from UK pet owners and breeders. Nor is there any attempt to link up with that scheme. Why? The problem however to my mind is not that a dog's EBV would not be published. It is that actual *test results* are not being revealed and that puppy buyers or one assumes, other breeders are supposed to just accept a piece of paper from this breeder-run project stating the equivalent of 'trust me'. No thanks.
The comments are not meant as criticisms for you to answer, Sins -- they are comments on why I personally don't like the way this scheme is being constructed, how it is being driven, or that results which should be transparent and open remain hidden.
I would love to see international, honest and transparent efforts that link up and don;t expect intelligent puppy buyers to accept some intermediary's piece of paper rather than being able to see documents for themselves.
I am glad to see there is a plan to have a standard for scans and interpretation! :)