Dogs Not Slaves?

The pedigree dog debate seems to be stepping up a gear, first the BBC and Pedigree withdraw from coverage and supporting Crufts. now protests are planned by by various groups at this years event.

One focus is the working and pastoral group, the protests have targeted this with the tag line “animals should not be slaves”. I have made it clear on this site that my interest is the Working Bearded Collie, outside of the Kennel Club jurisdiction, and some would say and all the better for it.

We have to remember that working is what they do, we call it working but for them it is, as the French say, their raison d’etre. A herding dog uses what is called an ‘aborted prey instinct’ , derived from the wolf stalking it’s the next meal for the pack. For the herding dog it just results in moving animals to where they need to go.

Herding dogs love and enjoy what they do, they thrive on activity. When the wind is howling and the rain is lashing down, if you say to a WBC do you want to go for a walk, they’re up and ready before you finish the sentence. This is what they enjoy. Man and dog have been together for 135,000 years.

Though not eligible for Crufts and excluded by the Kennel Club I would be unhappy with anyone saying the WBC should not be bred or considered a slave. Mine was my best friend and me his. I was his human. The WBC is very special and no one should decide they should become extinct. They have a right to existence.

WBC are happy little souls in a mutually understanding relationship and wouldn’t want to be anything else, anymore than people want to be elephants or Giant Tortoises. I agree with the experts they are so intelligent and energetic, they are too much for most people. But for us who can cope and love them, we, us and them should be permitted our co-evolution.

They are nature and a portal and through them we can gain a deeper and practical undestanding of this life.

The Cruft’s protest is now being covered by Beverley Cuddy, editor of Dogs Today at Cold Wet Nose.

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