The beloved French Bulldog, also known as Frenchies, have long been bred for their looks, at grave cost to their long-term health.
The cute canines are renowned for being cuddly and affectionate, but they also have to deal with the effects of having evolved to have a malformed skull thanks to breeding practices that shorten their necks and leave their noses and nostrils woefully shorter.
While the result is a lap dop that may seem adorable, these attributes are disastrous for a dog. Most Frenchies are susceptible to Brachycephalic Airway Obstruction Syndrome, which leads to major problems for the respiratory and heart systems of the animal – including death, if not treated with appropriate care.
And with their labored breathing combined with a short coat, their ability to withstand lower temperatures places them at serious risk of worsened health.
One breeder in the Netherlands has been working hard to change the future of the breed for the better, reports LADBible.
Under the motto “We Breed for Health, Not Show,” Hawbucks French Bulldog is hoping to evolve an improved French Bulldog through a healthy bit of “time, effort, thinking, doubt, idealism, frustrations and hope.”
On its website, the breeder explains:
“It is not normal for a dog to be kept calm when it’s above 20 degrees outside. It is not ‘cute’ when a dog cannot breathe without making noise.
“A French Bulldog is first and foremost a dog. A dog is supposed to move freely and not be held back by his body. A dog is at its most beautiful when it’s not obstructed by physical limitations.”
Hawbucks is hoping to set a new example for the industry to prevent the suffering of future generations of Frenchies.
Chantal and Krijn van Kruining, the Dutch pair who run Hawbucks, were sensitized to these issues after taking in a six-year-old Frenchie named Quinta.
After witnessing the abnormalities Quinta suffered, they began scouring the globe for other French Bulldog bloodlines while researching the genetics of these special pups.
Since then, they’ve produced a French Bulldog with both a longer neck and nose. But they’re still hoping to breed one that has fewer abnormalities.
“We do not claim to know it all,” the couple wrote. “The only thing we can do is promise that we will try our utmost best to breed health French Bulldogs. That is what we aspire. That is what we can hope for.”
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