The American Kennel Club is recognizing two new breeds in the upcoming year, never mind that one of those can trace its history back nearly five centuries.
The Coton de Tulear, a small fluffy little pup, and the wirehaired Viszla will both be formally recognized by the club. You can get more information here.
Meanwhile, the AKC is biting back after some unfavorable publicity on HBO’s Real Sports with Bryant Gumble. The program, entitled “Unnatural Selection” springs from a 2011 NYT Magazine article about the changes in the English Bulldog over several decades, specifically changes in the University of Georgia mascot. AKC officials have fired back several blog and Facebook posts about how slanted the finished piece looked. Here is a bit of what they felt was unfairly excluded.
I am all for fair journalism, but if the collar fits, you better be ready to wear it. In the bulldog, pugs, King Charles Cavaliers, and many other breeds including my beloved German Shepherds, piss-poor AKC judging, lack of AKC follow up in their breeder programs, and greed on the behalf of breeders have lead us to a huge number of health issues and problems. You can spin that any way you want, but to deny it is myopia at its worst. The other half of that equation is uninformed and cheap buyers who refuse to pay money for the well-bred dogs, buy dogs without health clearances, and then breed litters with no clue as to the pedigree simply because they happen to have an AKC paper. IF you want proof of this, take five minutes to peruse any city’s Craig’s List pet section.
So coming back full circle, the two new inductees into the AKC mix; they have thrived for decades in relative obscurity. Now, that they will be the focus of much attention as the new class of canines, will we see a change in the breed? Will unscrupulous breeders begin milling the fluffy white Coton du Tulear to capitalize on the unwitting public who see this ball of fluff and absolutely must have one? Only time will tell.