More on brachycephalic dogs: Why don’t we see it as cruelty to allow them to be born this way?

Pugs are cute but have poor health

In this week’s podcast, the main topic of discussion was an ongoing theme for me at the moment: Pugs and other short-nosed dogs that have such severe breathing difficulties that they need surgery to allow them to continue to live a normal life.

Health problems in brachycephalic dogs

This subject is one that I feel strongly about, and I plan to continue to campaign for changes in the way such puppies are produced and sold. The main veterinary representative organisation in Ireland ( called “Veterinary Ireland”) has taken a strong stance on this, publicly stating that the intention is that within ten years, no Pugs will be born that cannot breathe naturally, without the need for corrective surgery. Discussions are currently planned with other organisations (including Dogs Trust Ireland, the ISPCA and the Irish Kennel Club) to try to move this agenda forwards.

Pugs don’t need to have breathing problems: relatively minor changes to their anatomy would allow them to breathe comfortably while still being as adorable. As an example, look at the photo below: a “long-nosed Pug” would still make a great pet.

Pugs could easily be bed to have longer muzzles, like this dog

Pugs could easily be bed to have longer muzzles, like this dog


Questions from listeners

In the podcast, Pete also answers a number of questions from listeners, including a fat Beagle who cannot lose weight, a Japanese Spitz who always gets diarrhoea when he goes for walks and a dog who gets anxious during the long summer evenings, needing to have the curtains pulled to calm him down.

Listen to the podcast:

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Please note that I am unable to answer veterinary questions in comments. If you have questions or concerns about your pet's health it is always better to contact your vet.

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