Thursday, November 20, 2008

Caroline Kisko May Not Be a Liar ...

I may have to apologize to Caroline Kisko at the Kennel Club.

In the past I have suggested that she is little more than a paid apologist and knowing liar.

I may wrong about that. She may simply be an idiot.

How else to take her comments to Dog World which reports:

THE ASSOCIATE Parliamentary Group for Animal Welfare (APGAW) is forming a working group ‘on the welfare of pedigree dogs’.

The group which, APGAW said, has been set up in the wake of the documentary Pedigree Dogs Exposed, will aim to establish what health and welfare implications are on ‘pedigree dogs bred to certain Standards’.

So what is Ms. Kiscso's deep thinking on the matter? She says:

We are aware that APGAW is intending to carry out a review of dog breeding.

We are concerned with the statement which gives the impression that this review is to be aimed at the breeding of pedigree dogs only. It is critical that the breeding of all dogs should be reviewed – not just that of pedigree dogs, since both crossbreeds and mongrels can suffer health problems.

Now the reason I think Ms Kisko may simply be an idiot is that she does not seem to understand the difference between a certain small level of inherent defect, deformity and disease in a large population of any animal, and and the intentional creation of defect and deformity, and a predictable rise in disease, in a small and deeply inbred population.

To make the analogy to humans, there will always be a certain number of people born every year who are dwarfs, who have adolescent rheumatoid arthritis, who have heart murmurs, or who have defective eyes of some sort.

Human populations, like wild animal populations, are essentially random-bred animals with some natural selection and with frequent new gene infusions due to long-distance migrations.

That said, there is a law against Ms. Kisko having sex with her father! Ditto, as the producers of Pedigree Dogs Exposed pointed out to Kennel Club Chairman Ronnie Irving, there is a law prohibiting people from having sex with their daughters. Why does this law exist, and why is it older than the Bible?

The answer, of course, is that even the most primitive of pastoral people know that deeply inbred populations of animals (and humans are nothing if not animals) will result in an increase in known, predictable defect.

Since society will bear the burden of caring for the sick, the broken, the lame, and the retarded, the most early laws of man have centered around the taboo of incest and the mating of close family members.

But Ms. Kisko's Kennel Club does not merely turn a blind eye to the taboo of incest and the mating of close family members; they positively require it in some breeds, where a small initial genetic pool has been choked down and bottle-necked to the point that 50 percent of all dogs in that breed can be predicted to have a named serious (i.e. fatal) genetic defect!

And then there is the little matter of intentionally mating circus dwarves and side show freaks for profit.

No, no, it is not done with humans. But it is done with dogs in the Kennel Club, where entire breeds exist for no other reason than to make humans laugh because the dog can barely walk, can barely breathe, is so small it can fit in a tea cup, is so large it can be ridden like a pony, etc.

"Step right up," the carnival barker screams, "and see the teacup dog whose brains are spilling out of its too small skull! Watch it have seizure after seizure! See the Pop-eyed Pug, whose face is so flat it has no room for its eyes or its tongue! Look at the English Bulldog, whose very existence speaks of the collapse of Empire."

Of course, the laugh-riot here is that the Kennel Club not only wants to "review" the breeding of all dogs, including random-bred and "mongrel" dogs, but they want to ban anything but pure breeds sold and licensed by members of their own Club!

Don't believe it? Believe it, and read all about it here.

So what to make of it?

Is Caroline Kisko little more than a paid public relations liar-for-hire, or is she a genuine idiot and/or ignorant?

Are her actions due to limited brain capacity brought about (perhaps) by close-inbreeding between family members, or is she simply a mongrel without a trust fund who is saying what she thinks she has to in order to hold on to the paying job she desperately needs to survive?

I hope it is the latter!

You see ignorance can be cured, ethics can be improved, and liars can tell the truth, but real inbred brain-damage is forever.

Just ask the dogs.


an American in Copenhagen said...

Thanks for all the great recent posts.

I think some of the fear of outcrossing by conformation showers is that they think it will improve the dogs health wise but ruin all their hard work in terms of establishing good conformation (I am not speaking about the people who's hard work has been towards establishing deformed conformation).

I was talking with a top breeder of standard schnauzers about outcrossing purebred dogs and she told me about breeders of German pinschers in Finland ourcrossing to schnauzers. (In the 1800's the two breeds were the smooth and wire coated version of the same dog and were born in the same litters.)

Apparently the German Pinschers trace back to 10 or less dogs. Von Willebrands disease runs rampant and other diseases are probably bubling their way to the surface too. German Pinscher people are about as breed obsessed as any group can be. However, a group of die hard breeders in Finland decided to outcross with Schnauzers in order to widen the gene pool and to improve the shoulder angles in their dogs. After 3 generations or so no one can tell the difference between a dog that still traces to the original 10 and one that has a bit of schnauzer in it--except that the ones with Schnauzer blood are healther and have better conformation. It wasn't clear me from the conversation whether the breed club in Finland will register the 3rd generation dogs as purebred yet or not.

I have heard of similar outcross projects (maybe even here) such as English Setters to Dalmations to get back some gene related to the urinary tract or something, Corgies to Boxers to get a naturally docked tail, etc. I would love to see someone (maybe even you) write a nice article about how ourcrossing can bring great things to the table and will not ruin a breed in terms of predictable looks, coat color and texture, temperment, size, or showring conformation. Outcrossing can improve genetic diversity and superficial things simulaneously and the breed is be back to better than ever in about 3-4 generations.

Caveat said...

Ms Kisko is just 'spinning' for the public, most of whom know jack about dogs, animal welfare, etc.

You'd be amazed at the nonsense people will believe these days, especially about dogs.

The KC probably figures everybody will accept that breeders of mutts are just as guilty of harming dogs as the extreme dog snobs are.

It kind of tells you how dense they must be if they think the rest of us will fall for it.

Sam said...

We can start addressing design issues in mongrels, mutts and crossbreeds now by developing a set of breed standards, except I guess you wouldn't call it a BREED standard.

PBurns said...

By definition, mutts and mongrels are always going to be dogs bred outside of any organized breeding scheme. That said, in the US today most "mutts" are actually two purebreed crosses. For example, a friend of mine just adopted a REALLY cute little dog that is one of 11 puppies born to a beagle. Who is the dad? From the looks of things, most likely a black and tan dachshund. Whether the dog misses on any genetic problems is a hit and miss, but one thing is in the pups favor: this is a real outcross to two different gene pools. What is not known is what either gene pool actually looked like.