This morning I dropped the youngest children at Junior School and today the teacher that teaches our youngest Tilly, who is five years old, was bringing in her puppy to visit the class. We had been asked prior to the pup coming in if any of the children are allergic to dogs.
This teacher started with the school in September and is leaving us at Christmas due to her husband who she married this year, getting a job in South Devon and in passing conversation with the teacher, it turns out her husband is a vet. She is nice enough and I have observed that she likes the designer labels in life in the way she dresses and always has a fullface (makeup) on. I remember her coming for part of her interview with Mr Norton our headteacher and she had a short skirt on (she did have thick tights on as well), which although most might feel wrong on a moral call, I would think shows an impractical side to a person, she is working with little children, so surely trousers would be more practical for getting down and doing things with them and I was amused when I saw she got the job, maybe wearing a short skirt is more practical for a job interview than I realised.
Before leaving Tilly at school this morning I asked her teacher what type of puppy she had and with much excitement she told me it was "A Boston Terrier and would you like to see him," as he was crated just outside in the car. The school bell had not yet gone and although I was a bit taken aback with her saying she had got a Boston Terrier, because of them being an extreme brachy breed and her husband being a vet, my interest got the better of me and I was giving her the benefit of the doubt, maybe this pup was on the less extreme scale of the breed.
Now I think because she knows I breed Cavaliers, she probably wrongly guessed that I like flat faced breed look and far play she does not know that I'm out crossing them to breed away from this gross exaggeration which has left breeds bred this way with a litany of health problems.
As we walked to the car, I said, "They are quite rare to find in this area", she told me "Yes, I was lucky I found this litter at Bristol, she is around ten weeks old . They are a bit rare in the UK." She then said, "I will breed from her." I got the feeling she will breed from her because rare (rare most often equals dogs with lots of health problems), and most importantly people will pay through the nose for them, they will literally hemorrhage money at you if rare is put into the equation with dogs. Don't people wonder why something is rare ? Rare most often indicates there are problems, hence the rareness of them and the problems are normally to do with health. Rareness does not equal health in dogs.
In a Kennel Club survey of Boston Terriers it has been recorded that 90 % of them are born by c-sectionin in the UK. I would suspect two problems cause this figure. The first is the obvious one, the anatomy of the face being flat and broad across the cranium causes birth to be slow or in some cases the cranium is to board to pass through the pelvis. The second reason is purely a monetary one, the fact they are rare and thus command a high price in the market, that if a bitch is a bit slow in birthing the pups, the owner gets fidgety and is more likely to ask for a c-section because the cost of that is less than the cost risk of losing a pup, these pups are sold for anything from around £1000 to over £3000 per pup. Amazing that the more unhealthy and rare a breed gets, the more higher a price it seems able to command.
Health problems are common in this breed and the most common are cataracts, corneal ulcers (because of there protruding eyes), patellar luxation, curvature of the back (called roaching), deafness and skin allergies. The list don't stop there. They are also prone to heart problems, mast cell tumours, because of their short muzzle they cannot regulate their temperature well, so are not tolerate of heat or cold weather and they obviously are prone to respiratory problems due to being extreme brachycephalic and often have stonetic nares which is narrowing of the nostrils causing problems to breath through the nose and thus having to breath through the mouth causing a higher risk of lung infections, because particles in the air are not filtered out in the same way as air that passes through the nasal chambers.
If you are a regular reader of my blog you might understand how I felt as she lifted the boot of her car and saw a Boston Terrier puppy looking at me with no muzzle and bulging eyes. I don't often get up close to these really extreme brachy breeds, but every time I feel the same disgust and repulsion at the way they have been bred by humans to look, coupled with a huge wave of empathy for them, as I know the suffering that these dogs endure to look like that for their owner. Her husbands a vet, so this is not born out of ignorance, so no excuse. I looked at the pup and I looked at her puzzled and said, "Your husbands a vet and you bought a breed like this. Sorry, you do know the health problems with breeding dogs brachy and with flat faces. Not my cup of tea I'm afraid." I feel bad because she obviously thought she has got the bees knees with her little pup and I had just burst her bubble (I suspect only for a second, no doubt her choice of dog would be reaffirmed by cooing from the children at the pup later), she looked uncomfortable and said, "Okay, that's fine." I turned and just walked off shaking my head in disbelief and honestly, holding back tears. Sorry, I know it's Christmas and all, but with other things that have been happening around the world and then this, this morning, it felt not like a piece of straw that had broke my back, but a ton of it, I truly felt despaired.
“The greatest pleasure of a dog is that you may make a fool of yourself with him, and not only will he not scold you,but he will make a fool of himself, too.”
― Samuel Butler
Me with Bumble and Blottie, waiting patiently to be unleashed, November 2018
Hello, I am Jane, you might of guessed, I love dogs. We are situated in the North Devon countryside, England, United Kingdom. Our home is occupied by my husband, David, our children, pack of dogs and me.