This summary report posted in June 2019 highlights key activities and progress on relevant action items.
More information on BWG is available at www.ukbwg.org.uk.
Action 1: The Kennel Club to develop Breed Health and Conservation Plans for several brachycephalic breeds, including Bulldog, French Bulldog, Pekingese and Pug.
Action 2: For BWG members to review the breed standards for brachycephalic breeds and recommend any changes for consideration by relevant breed health co-ordinators and breed clubs, the Breed Standards & Conformation Sub-group of the KC Dog Health Group and the KC Breed Standards and Studbook Sub-committee.
Action 3: The BWG to review points of concern for brachycephalic category 2 and 3 breeds, including exaggerated conformation and “difficulty breathing”, and make recommendations to the Breed Standards and Conformation Sub-Group of the KC Dog Health Group.
Action 4a: BWG to understand and review current judge training (including continuing development) and practice, including the use of in-show health assessments such as exercise tolerance tests, with opportunity to make recommendations to the Breed Standards & Conformation Sub-group of the KC Dog Health Group.
Action 4b: BWG to review the current vet-check systems in place at major dog shows, with opportunity to make recommendations to the Breed Standards & Conformation Sub-group of the KC Dog Health Group.
Action 5: BVA to investigate brachycephalic health scheme with breed health co-ordinators and Kennel Club, informed by other BWG members.
Action 6: BWG to communicate with companies and marketing bodies to seek commitments that they will not use brachycephalic breeds in their designs and imagery.
Action 7: Following 2017 launch with the Kennel Club, ensure Puppy Contract and Puppy Information Pack are prominent in BWG member communication channels...
Action 8: Veterinary members of BWG to collaboratively undertake activities at the individual, community and national levels (as outlined above) to influence demand for healthy dogs.
Action 9: BWG members to promote, support and engage with research that aims to improve and increase the evidence base on brachycephalic dog health and welfare... (formed, a Brachycephalic Research Team).
A communications sub-group of the BWG has been made up of the BVA, KC, PDSA, Dogs Trust, BSAVA, RSPCA and breed health representatives, and have developed a strategy for the group.
Obesity Position Statement:
Given the strong evidence that exists to support associations between obesity/overweight and welfare issues in brachycephalic breeds and the reality that obesity/overweight is a reversible and preventable condition, the BWG has prioritised obesity/overweight for specific focus during 2019. A position statement on obesity/overweight is currently being drafted which will be followed by a range of activities by BWG member groups to highlight the health benefits from maintaining a healthy body condition score in brachycephalic dogs.