Tag: victoria stilwell
Lennox the alleged pit bull is scheduled to be euthanized in Belfast this week, despite continuing international efforts to save him.
A protest Saturday in Belfast included demonstrators who flew in from the U.S., England and Dublin, according to UTV in Belfast, and demonstrations are scheduled at the British and Irish consulates in New York today, organized by No Kill New York.
Victoria Stilwell, host of “It’s Me or the Dog” on the Animal Planet network, offered to find Lennox a new home in the U.S., and cover all expenses, but on Sunday she told msnbc.com she has received no response.
The 7-year-old dog was seized in 2010 after pit bulls were banned under the UK’s Dangerous Dog act.
The dog’s owners say he is an American bulldog-Labrador mix, but dog wardens, after taking measurements, declared him a “possible pitbull type” and claimed that — though he has bitten no one and been the subject of no complaints — he had a personality disorder.
Protesters say they are trying to raise awareness not only about Lennox but also to show that breed specific legislation is unfair.
Posted by jwoestendiek July 9th, 2012 under Muttsblog, videos.
Tags: animal welfare, animals, bans, belfast, breed, breed bans, breeds, dangerous, demonstrations, dogs, euthanasia, execution, facebook, ireland, laws, lennox, news, offer, pets, pit bull, pitbull, protests, save lennox, twitter, uk, victoria stilwell
That’s the slogan of a new RSPCA campaign aimed at shifting the emphasis when it comes to breeding purebred dogs — from looks to health.
The campaign launched yesterday, with this ad — featuring a pug as the poster child — in the Daily Mail.
It’s directed mostly at breeders, who the RSCPA asserts often seek to meet dog show breed standards that place appearance above canine health.
But it’s also meant to change the thinking of consumers, who help create the demand and often aren’t aware of the genetic health problems many purebreds face.
“Everyone needs to be aware of the serious health and welfare problems affecting pedigree dogs and that dogs bred for looks are born to suffer,” RSPCA senior scientist Claire Calder said.
“A cute-looking puppy or dog can be hard to resist, but the result of not looking beyond this can be thousands of pounds spent on vets’ bills and a pet with long-lasting health and welfare problems. This is one of the biggest challenges facing dog welfare in the UK today.”
As we’ve written before — here and elsewhere — it’s one of the biggest challenges in the U.S., too, even though it rarely seems to rise to the forefront.
One major exception came last month, with an in-depth article in the New York Times magazine about the plight of the purebred bulldog.
But, by and large, the UK is leading the debate, which, while long-lurking in the shadows, was retriggered by Jemima Harrison’s documentary for the BBC, “Pedigree Dogs Exposed.”
Between its impact, and the efforts of the RSPCA, there have been some changes, mostly in kennel club’s breed standards that seemed to place appearance above health.
The RSPCA website elaborates on some of the problems those standards have led to:
“According to scientific studies some of the UK’s favourite breeds of dogs have been bred to such extremes that they can no longer breathe or walk normally. For example, dogs with short, flat faces often have narrow nostrils and abnormally developed windpipes. They can often suffer severe breathing difficulties and may have difficulty enjoying a walk or playing.
Dogs with folded or wrinkled skin are prone to itchy and painful skin complaints, and dogs with bulging or sunken eyes are prone to injury, pain or discomfort. These are only a few examples and a recent study showed that all of the 50 most popular breeds have some aspect of their body which can cause suffering
Recent research by the RSPCA shows the public is prone to thinking buying a purebred dog ensures that dog will be healthy. But dogs “bred for their looks,” the RSPCA says, ”are vulnerable to unnecessary disease, disability, pain or behavioural problems.”
Among those quoted in an RSPCA press release is Victoria Stilwell, dog trainer from the TV show “It’s Me Or The Dog.”
“I have nothing against dog showing and nothing against responsible breeders, she said. “But what I do have something against is breeding animals just for the way we want them to look, even though that animal is compromised both physically and, a lot of the time, mentally. So we have to change. Why are we destroying these animals just because we like the way they look?”
Unlike in the U.S., where interest seems to rise and fizzle, the issue isn’t likely to go away anytime soon in the UK.
Harrison is now working on a sequel to “Pedigree Dogs Exposed,” which promises to be just as hard hitting, or maybe harder hitting, than the first. You can keep up with those developments on her Pedigree Dogs Exposed blog.
Posted by jwoestendiek December 19th, 2011 under Muttsblog.
Tags: animals, appearance, awareness, breathing, breed standards, breeders, breeds, bulldog, campaign, dog shows, dogs, genetic, health, health problems, jemima harrison, pedigree, pedigree dogs exposed, pets, public, pug, purebred, purebreds, rspca, trainer, uk, victoria stilwell
There are three weeks left to vote in the American Humane Association’s Hero Dogs Contest, a competition aimed at shining a light on the thousands of specially trained dogs giving comfort to people every day.
The American Humane Association and Cesar Canine Cuisine, are honoring the work dogs do in eight different categories — service dogs, guide dogs, hearing dogs, therapy dogs, as well as those in law enforcement, the military, and search and rescue.
An eighth, catch-all category will honor an “emerging hero dog.”
Browse through the nominees and you’ll find a few dogs that have been featured on our pages before — including Surf Dog Ricochet and, though he’s no longer in the competition, Miracle Dog Patrick.
Patrick is the dog who survived being tossed down a trash chute and abandoned at a high-rise apartment in Newark, N.J. While his story “is one of heroism in the face of horrific abuse and neglect,” contest officials said, the person who entered him asked that his name be removed to avoid further complications in the continuing controversy over who should have legal custody of the dog.
“Many people call us the heros for not euthanizing him,” notes his owner. “We respond that Rigby is the true hero for loving life and not letting his disability in any way slow him down.”
Winners in each category will be determined by online voting — you can cast your ballot at herodogawards.org — and the grand prize winner will be selected based on those votes and the decision of a panel of judges.
Judges for the contest include Betty White, Whoopi Goldberg and Victoria Stilwell.
For every online vote, Cesar Canine Cuisine will make a donation to the AHA, with a limit of $200,000.
Voting ends July 31.
Founded in 1877, the American Humane Association is the oldest national organization dedicated to protecting both children and animals. It’s the organization that issues the “No Animals Were Harmed” stamp on film and TV productions.
Winners in each contest category receive $5,000 for the charity they have designated. The grand prize winner receives $10,000 for their specified charity. They also win a trip to Los Angeles for the Hero Dog Awards on October 1st in Hollywood. (AHA officials say a tribute to Patrick is planned as well, even though he’s no longer an official entry.)
The presentation will air on the Hallmark Channel, November 11 at 8 p.m.
Posted by jwoestendiek July 9th, 2011 under Muttsblog.
Tags: american humane association, animals, assistance, betty white, cesar canine cuisine, dogs, guide dogs, hearing dogs, hero, hero dog contest, hero dogs, honoring, judges, law enforcement, military, miracle dog patrick, online, patrick, pets, rigby, search and rescue, service, surf dog ricochet, therapy dogs, victoria stilwell, votes, voting, whoopi goldberg, work