05/16/23 It is not ethical to breed animals that suffer and cannot breathe!

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For the new Animal Protection Act: a ban on the intentional creation of sick animals is needed

- Bulldogs, pugs, Pekingese, Persian and Munchkin cats on the list of unhealthy breeds

The Animal Friends Croatia Association believes that it is unethical to breed animals that suffer because of their physical characteristics, which is why, as members of the Commission for the drafting of the new Animal Protection Act, they will advocate that the breeding of such animals be banned in Croatia. Namely, certain breeds of cats such as Persian and Himalayan, munchkin, Scottish fold and dogs such as pug, shih tzu, shar pei, French and English bulldog, Prince Charles Cavalier, Boston terrier, boxer and Pekingese were systematically bred for the wrong reasons. Breeders focused on their appearance, size and temperament, but not on their health. Due to their anatomical characteristics, i.e. the specific shape of the muzzle, head and neck, brachycephalic dogs often have chronic health problems with breathing, heart, joints and skin, gastrointestinal problems and various eye and other diseases.

The Association welcomes the decision banning the breeding of the English Bulldog and Cavalier Prince Charles in Norway in 2021. After an extensive hearing before a judge and two assistant judges, one of whom was a veterinarian and the other a geneticist, the Oslo court ruled that their breeding violated the Norwegian Animal Welfare Act. As of May 2020, pedigrees for brachycephalic dog breeds are no longer issued in the Netherlands. The decision is in line with Dutch law that prohibits the breeding of animals with physical characteristics that may be harmful to their health and offspring. The Dutch Kennel Club has adapted to this and no longer issues pedigrees for the mentioned breeds, but only a certificate of origin to facilitate the identification of breeders who do not comply with the law.

Animal Friends Croatia is particularly appalled by the rise in popularity of some breeds such as the French Bulldog. Such dogs are partially or completely handicapped throughout their lives, they experience immense suffering from living in their own bodies, all because of someone's aesthetic requirements. "It is not normal or 'typical' for an animal to breathe with difficulty, snore, suffocate, vomit or walk sloppily, but it is a genotypic and phenotypic malformation that prevents a dog from living a normal life and negatively affects its well-being," point out veterinarians from the Department of Small Practice Veterinarians in Croatia.

The Scottish Fold cat breed got its name from its folded ears. But such an appearance of the ears is due to an inherited cartilage defect that causes joint pain, joined joints and various other malformations in cats. Munchkin cats were also created as a result of human cruelty: they have very short legs due to a genetic mutation, which causes bone and joint problems. Despite this, they are bred for their "cute" appearance, which is extremely unethical, unjustified and cruel.

"All the so-called purebred animals are victims of human vanity and taking it as our right to design the appearance of a dog or a cat as if we were choosing the color and size of furniture. Animals are not there to fulfill our wishes and desires. Thousands of animals of all ages, shapes, sizes and physical characteristics are waiting in shelters and in the homes of volunteers from various associations. Such animals are grateful and bring immense joy to their adopters. Another advantage of adoption is that those who adopt them know their temperament and can easily recommend exactly who to adopt according to the adopter's habits," says Animal Friends Croatia.

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