New PETA Ad Takes Aim At Deadly Costs Of Breeding Dogs In Run-Up To Crufts

For Immediate Release:
2 March 2011

Sandra Smiley +44 0207 357 9229, ext. 229; [email protected]

Birmingham – PETA has just erected an illuminated bus shelter ad in Birmingham’s city centre which won’t be leaving dog breeders wagging their tails with joy. That’s because the ad shows a small dog cowering under the barrel of a gun and reads, “Boycott Breeders or the Mutt Gets It. Don’t Kill Shelter Dogs’ Chances. Adopt. Never Buy”. PETA placed the ad just days before the start of the world’s largest dog show, Crufts, which is organised by the pro-breeding Kennel Club.

“When people buy a dog or a cat from a breeder, they might as well be holding a gun to the head of an animal in a shelter because that animal then misses out on a home”, says PETA Manager Mimi Bekhechi. “The breeding industry is based on greed, whereas adopting a homeless animal from a shelter is a true act of kindness.”

Dog shows encourage people to buy dogs from breeders instead of adopting a perfectly healthy, loving dog languishing in an animal shelter. The Kennel Club alone registers more than 270,000 dogs per year, and there are thousands more bred by unregistered breeders each year as well. At the same time, a staggering number of stray and abandoned dogs are picked up off UK streets by local authorities – more than 100,000 between 2008 and 2009 – and that doesn’t include those abandoned at animal shelters. Each year, thousands of highly adoptable dogs are killed in UK animal shelters because there are not enough good homes while breeders churn out dogs to sell and dog shows promote breeding.
Breeding dogs for certain unnatural physical features can also be cruel because pedigree dogs often suffer from debilitating hereditary and congenital defects, such as hypothyroidism, epilepsy, cataracts, allergies and hip dysplasia. In fact, the RSPCA withdrew its support of Crufts because, as it states on its website, the approach to such shows “actively encourages both the breeding of deformed and disabled dogs and the inbreeding of closely related animals”, which is “morally and ethically unjustifiable”.