Crufts presenter to probe breeding issues

Crufts presenter Clare Balding will examine health and welfare issues surrounding dog breeding when the controversial contest returns to TV screens, More4 said today.

The BBC, which had been broadcasting Crufts every year since 1966, announced in December 2008 that it was dropping its TV coverage of the programme following concerns over certain breeds of pedigree dog in the competition.



More4, which is screening highlights from Crufts this year, said that between March 11 to 14, Balding will look at "the serious side of dog breeding with an emphasis on health and welfare issues that surround it".



Topics discussed over the four days of coverage will include puppy farming, status dogs and cross breeding, with a vet on hand to answer viewers' questions.



Hamish Mykura, head of More4 said: "I am really pleased that More4 has the opportunity to show Crufts 2010... Crufts is a national TV event that has been bringing pleasure to dog-lovers for decades and the current controversy over pedigree dog breeding is as interesting as the show itself.



"Crufts provides the perfect platform to educate viewers about these issues, and to highlight best practice."



Last month, Crufts organisers the Kennel Club announced that breeders will be able to access a "doggie dating website" to find the perfect match for their pedigree dog, with the aim of improving the health and genetic diversity of such animals.



In addition to the coverage from Crufts, More4 will also be showing Good Dog, Bad Dog, a one hour documentary about dog health. It will use the controversy over dog breeding and genetic problems faced by some pedigree dogs as a starting point and give guidelines for best practice.



Concerns were sparked by a BBC documentary which claimed pedigree dogs bred for shows were suffering a high degree of genetic illness.



The controversy prompted the Kennel Club and the Dogs Trust to jointly fund an independent inquiry, which made a number of recommendations to tackle inbreeding in pedigrees, puppy farming and other welfare issues for dogs.



Balding said: "I am very excited to be presenting Crufts once again and am looking forward to working with More4 for the first time.



"I am pleased that the Kennel Club are working hard to correct the problems that have emerged with some pedigree dogs."



The club has also launched a new breed information centre on its website to help prospective owners find responsible breeders in their area and see which type of dog would best suit their lifestyle.



Professor Bill Reilly, president of the British Veterinary Association, said: "The televising of Crufts is a controversial move, but a welcome one if it can be used to engage and educate the public and highlight health and welfare issues in dogs.



"In particular, the British Veterinary Association sees Good Dog, Bad Dog as a way to keep the debate in the public eye.



"It is essential that potential dog owners have access to the right information before buying their pup so they can understand how to prioritise health and welfare and ensure their pet has the best chance of a happy, healthy life."

Discover more property articles at Homes and Property
Suggested Topics
PROMOTED VIDEO
Travel
The shipping news: a typical Snoozebox construction
travelSpending the night in a shipping container doesn't sound appealing, but mobile crash pads are popping up at the summer's biggest events
Arts and Entertainment
'Old Fashioned' will be a different kind of love story to '50 Shades'
film
Arts and Entertainment
Tracey Emin's 'My Bed' is returning to the Tate more than 15 years after it first caused shockwaves at the gallery
artTracey Emin's bed returns to the Tate after record sale
Arts and Entertainment
Smart mover: Peter Bazalgette
filmHow live cinema screenings can boost arts audiences
Environment
Neil Young performing at Hyde Park, London, earlier this month
environment
Property search
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

iJobs Job Widget
iJobs General

Project Coordinator

Competitive: The Green Recruitment Company: The Organisation: The Green Recrui...

Project Manager (HR)- Bristol - Upto £400 p/day

£350 - £400 per annum + competitive: Orgtel: Project Manager (specializing in ...

Embedded Linux Engineer

£40000 - £50000 per annum + competitive: Progressive Recruitment: Embedded Sof...

Senior Hardware Design Engineer - Broadcast

£50000 - £65000 per annum + Benefits: Progressive Recruitment: Working for a m...

Day In a Page

Save the tiger: The animals bred for bones on China’s tiger farms

The animals bred for bones on China’s tiger farms

The big cats kept in captivity to perform for paying audiences and then, when dead, their bodies used to fortify wine
A former custard factory, a Midlands bog and a Leeds cemetery all included in top 50 hidden spots in the UK

A former custard factory, a Midlands bog and a Leeds cemetery

Introducing the top 50 hidden spots in Britain
Ebola epidemic: Plagued by fear

Ebola epidemic: Plagued by fear

How a disease that has claimed fewer than 2,000 victims in its history has earned a place in the darkest corner of the public's imagination
Chris Pratt: From 'Parks and Recreation' to 'Guardians of the Galaxy'

From 'Parks and Recreation' to 'Guardians of the Galaxy'

He was homeless in Hawaii when he got his big break. Now the comic actor Chris Pratt is Hollywood's new favourite action star
How live cinema screenings can boost arts audiences

How live cinema screenings can boost arts audiences

Broadcasting plays and exhibitions to cinemas is a sure-fire box office smash
Shipping container hotels: Pop-up hotels filling a niche

Pop-up hotels filling a niche

Spending the night in a shipping container doesn't sound appealing, but these mobile crash pads are popping up at the summer's biggest events
Native American headdresses are not fashion accessories

Feather dust-up

A Canadian festival has banned Native American headwear. Haven't we been here before?
Boris Johnson's war on diesel

Boris Johnson's war on diesel

11m cars here run on diesel. It's seen as a greener alternative to unleaded petrol. So why is London's mayor on a crusade against the black pump?
5 best waterproof cameras

Splash and flash: 5 best waterproof cameras

Don't let water stop you taking snaps with one of these machines that will take you from the sand to meters deep
Louis van Gaal interview: Manchester United manager discusses tactics and rebuilding after the David Moyes era

Louis van Gaal interview

Manchester United manager discusses tactics and rebuilding after the David Moyes era
Will Gore: The goodwill shown by fans towards Alastair Cook will evaporate rapidly if India win the series

Will Gore: Outside Edge

The goodwill shown by fans towards Alastair Cook will evaporate rapidly if India win the series
The children were playing in the street with toy guns. The air strikes were tragically real

The air strikes were tragically real

The children were playing in the street with toy guns
Boozy, ignorant, intolerant, but very polite – The British, as others see us

Britain as others see us

Boozy, ignorant, intolerant, but very polite
How did our legends really begin?

How did our legends really begin?

Applying the theory of evolution to the world's many mythologies
Watch out: Lambrusco is back on the menu

Lambrusco is back on the menu

Naff Seventies corner-shop staple is this year's Aperol Spritz