Is it wrong to offer a prize for a health tested veteran cavalier?
An interesting discussion has been taking place on CavalierChat, where Mark Marshall has upset breeders by offering a cash prize for a class of veteran cavaliers ( over 7 years old ) that have been MRI'd free of SM and have no heart murmur.
They do not seem to appreciate his generous offer.
As Mark said.....
"In my ignorance I actually thought that a senior dog, within the Breed Standard - without a syrinx or a murmur would be desireable to many".
The reasons given for the objections are interesting..........
"lets hope the poor old souls have good hearts or the greedy may drag out oldies just to get the money
Strange remark considering Mark's offer was originally made on a thread where breeders had just been congratulating a twelve year old for winning best veteran at Midland Counties. Interesting too that they, themselves, are running a scheme to give small cash prizes for veterans at all the major shows.
Slightly worrying is this comment by a cavalier health representative.......
"I don't know many people that would want to put an elderly dog under heavy sedation or anaesthetic to win £200 even with a good heart!!"
Is seven really that old in a cavalier? In most breeds a seven year old dog would not be considered elderly. At Crufts I have seen twelve year old border collies competing in flyball competitions.
One poster says.......
"he's hoping it's going to be a male that wins, then he can use it at stud! The £200 will be part of the stud fee ...
A crass and ungracious reply to a generous offer. I would imagine a lot of people would be interested in such a dog, and the snide remark about the stud fee would seem to be pure malice, as it would appear to be a no-strings-attached offer.
"It's not about silly gimmicks such as your 200 quid fiasco."
£200 is serious money, nothing silly about an amount like that.
I think you could describe it as putting your money where your mouth is, and there are not many people prepared to do that.
It appears these health conscious breeders have all decided that Mark should donate the money to research, despite a very sensible post which said.......
"It could be a great PR opportunity to showcase the best of veteran stock.
Obviously it wouldn't want to eclipse or detract from the winning dogs on the day who merit the acclaim on their big day out...but there's possibly something in the idea worth exploring surely.
So what if someone is interested in using an older dog at stud??
If these old boys came to general notice and still had something useful to contribute to someone's breeding programme,then why not?
I'm a bit surprised that a very real positive PR opportunity is being dismissed.
On the other hand does anyone think that such a dog doesn't actually exist?
I asked someone a while back about older heart clear scanned cavaliers.
The reply was "there have been more reported sightings of a Yeti, me dear"
I suspect that the last sentence goes to the core of the objections.
It is not that these older dogs don't exist, I know of one ( pet owned, scanned, nine year old, no murmur, no SM ) but because breeders will not scan their older cavaliers.
Cavaliers......Tommy Tuppence 2000-2012 and a half share of Faith.
Japanese Chins.... Dandy, Benny, Bridgette and Hana.