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Dutch to crack down on the breeding of short-snout dogs

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Dutch Prime Minister Mark Rutte has announced a plan to enforce the prohibition of the breeding of 20 types of brachycephalic dog. The government is set to enforce a 2014 law that forbids the breeding of dogs with short or squashed noses.

By Nick Whittle , 10 Jun 2019

The enforcement comes after it was determined that the five-year-old law was an insufficient deterrent for some breeders. The law, introduced in 2014, was in aid of an improvement of the health of dog breeds that have for centuries been bred with short snouts. However, the law, which demanded breeders join programmes to monitor breeding, was flouted by many.


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Fitness tests

In March the government issued a decree that all squashed-faced dogs such as Pugs, Bulldogs and Boxers must undergo fitness tests prior to their being used to breed.

The tests include fast-paced walking and various exercises followed by veterinarian monitoring of heart rate and recovery rate. Dogs which fail the tests are prohibited from breeding.


This week the Dutch Pug Club has announced, with immediate effect, that the breeding of any pug with a nose less than a...

Posted by Cat The Vet on Thursday, May 30, 2019

The premise of the law is based upon a traffic light system of characteristics:

‘Red’ warning is of dogs with a snout that is shorter than a third of the length of its skull. The red characteristic is seen predominantly of pugs and bulldogs (English and French). The Dutch government has prohibited further breeding of these types of dog.

‘Orange’ warning is of dogs with a snout that is equal to a third of the length of the skull. The government decrees breeding will only be permitted under special circumstances.

‘Green’ warning is of dogs with a snout that is at least half of the length of the skull. These dogs are permitted to be bred.


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Milo Laureij from animal welfare group Dier and Recht told the Vet Times: ‘That law is now being made enforceable, so the animals can really benefit from it. That is very important. We have been trying to help the muzzled dogs since 2010, and now there is finally a result.’

The move by Holland is sure to have implications for breeders elsewhere in Europe and the UK.