A while back, in a post entitled For Veterinarians, Silence Has Been Golden, I noted the complicity vets have in the diseased, deformed and defective pedigree dogs that we see today:
Pencil it out, and the big money in veterinary care is not in once-a-lifetime vaccines, but in the big stuff: shot hips, wrecked eyes, recurring skin conditions, Cesarean births, and mounting rates of cancer.... The vets are nearly silent about the litany of pain, suffering, shortened life, and rising expense...
For those who think my post was too cynical, I recommend going over to the Purina Care blog, where veterinarian Larry McDaniel writes about the recent New York Times piece on English Bulldogs (for my take on that, see here). McDaniel writes:
I vividly remember a conversation I had with an established Veterinarian when I was starting out in practice in Montana. He told me that one sure fire way to get my practice going was to help establish the Bulldog as a breed in Western Montana. I thought he was joking, but he was serious. All the Bulldog people in the Western Part of the state saw him as the expert and brought their dogs to him. He told me that much of his success was based on the Bulldog.
Is this kind of advice rare in the veterinary field?
Apparently, not at all. Veterinarian Emma Milne, in the U.K., once gave a presentation about health problems in pedigree dogs to the British Veterinary Association when an opthamological veterinarian stood up and said, point blank: Why would I want a healthier dog when it's the wrecked Kennel Club dogs that bring in the money?
Was this being said as a joke? At the time, some thought so, but maybe not!
One things for sure, as I noted in my earlier piece:
Just go to your vet and ask if he or she has a written list of breeds they actively caution against.
It's not going to be there.
Fact sheets on heartworm? Check. Even vets in Maine will have that in hope of maybe making a sale to a gullible customer.
But a fact sheet that says "avoid these breeds which are walking cancer bombs?"
A brochure that says "just say no to anchondroplastic dogs and brachycephalic breeds?"
Nope. Still not there. Some things never change.
A re-post from November, 2011.