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PETA to USA Network: don't air Westminster!

Uno the Beagle, 2008's Westminster dog show winner We told you last month about the BBC's announcement that it won't air the Crufts Dog Show (the UK's answer to Westminster), citing concerns raised by a BBC documentary, "Pedigree Dogs Exposed," over the health of dogs bred for the show ring.  The BBC reported:

The programme...says dogs suffering from genetic illness are not prevented from competing in dog shows and have gone on to win "best in breed," despite their poor health.

It says physical traits required by the Kennel Club's breed standards, such as short faces, wrinkling, screw-tails and dwarfism, have inherent health problems.

Other problems occur because of exaggerations bred into dogs by breeders trying to win rosettes, it adds.

Now PETA is asking the USA Network, which airs the Westminster show every February, to follow suit.  In a letter to USA's president Bonnie Hammer, PETA founder and president Ingrid Newkirk writes, "Since dog breeders routinely use incestuous inbreeding and genetic manipulation...it's not surprising that as many as one in four purebred dogs is plagued with a serious genetic problem." 

Beagles like last year's Westminster winner, Uno, are susceptible to a wide variety of genetic health problems like hypothyroidism, epilepsy and demodectic mange, according to PETA.

"Countless dogs suffer painful cosmetic surgeries and millions of wonderful dogs die in animal shelters because of the AKC's inhumane policies...USA Network can take a stand against the cruel treatment of animals simply by denying air time to the Westminster Kennel Club Dog Show," said PETA Vice President Daphna Nachminovitch.  And PETA blogger Amy Elizabeth chimes in:

So USA, how about being a good network? Sit. Listen. Roll over. And fetch a few reruns of Law and Order to replace that dastardly dog show…

What do you think -- is PETA right on or out of line?  Will you be watching Westminster this year?  Let us know in the comments.

-- Lindsay Barnett

Photo: Uno, a 15-inch beagle, won Best in Show at the 132nd Westminster Kennel Club Dog Show last year.  Seth Wenig/Associated Press.

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I don't normally watch Westminster. However I will say this: If humans didn't breed dogs, then we wouldn't even have domestic dogs. They wouldn't exist at all. Domesticated dogs only exist because of human-directed breeding.

Some of these PETA people have good intentions, but a lot of them just like to express power over other humans, and they use animals to accomplish that end.

In the name of resisting PETA's attempts to express power over me, this year I will make it a point to watch that show.

"Since dog breeders routinely use incestuous inbreeding and genetic manipulation...it's not surprising that as many as one in four purebred dogs is plagued with a serious genetic problem."

Absolute ROT and a complete LIE!!

Good breeders carefully screen their dogs - that is why the incidence of genetic conditions is know even though an individual who has inherited the condition and tests positive will be asympotatic and never have any problems.

Breed a poodle to a dysplastic golden and odds are 50% of the litter will be mutts with hip dysplasia.

In fact the backyard breereds who breed mutts like the so called 'goldendoodles' and other mutts are highly likely to be breeding dogs with inheritable genetic problems. They do NO screen their dogs. At minimum xrays of the hips, elbows and patelas should be done plus the CERF eye exam (annually), Baer hearing test, cardiac workup and thyroid testing (semi-annual) plus any breed-specific hereditary condition like von Willdebrand's disease. You won't see the breeders of the mutts called 'goldendoodles' doing this - not at the cost of $2000 -3000 per animal!

Linebreeding and inbreeding are NOT bad per se. If the breeding stock is free from hereditary problems, linebreeding and inbreeding can lock in the good genes and carry on the desireable traits. It all depends upon the qulaity of the animals in question. Only the ignorant do not understand this.

I've been in dogs for nearly 47 years.

PETA can go suck eggs. They even rant and rave that Service Dogs should not be trained to assist people.

I think it would be great if the USA Network dropped this show. Let's do a special on the USA Network about all the adorable shelter dogs available!

I hadn't thought of this until now. I wonder if I'm just stupid or that ignorant.

I agree with the post which suggests a special on shelter dogs instead.


This is a prime example of England's progressive thinking and our resistance to follow suit. Regardless of what "home breeders" would like to think Westminister dog show and the like are barbaric displays of what humans do to animals out of a selfish sense of "enjoyment". I hope USA listens to PETA and keeps this cruel display off their network!

It seems to me that promoting pure bred dogs, as the Westminster show does, is irresponsilbe when there are milliions of dogs being killed in shelters every year.

It also seems unfair to the dogs who are exhibited at Westminster, and the thousands bred for this show who don't make it, but who are condemned to live with inbred genetic defects.

I think that USA Network should dump the Westminster show and feature a show on rescued or shelter dogs which are more likely additions to typical families than show dogs.

As long as 3 to 4 million perfectly wonderful animals are being euthanized in our shelters year after year for lack of good homes, there is no excuse for breeding more animals. Dog shows help fuel the overpopulation crisis by encouraging people to buy purebred dogs instead of saving lives by adopting shelter dogs. I agree--USA should drop Westminster and air a show about shelter dogs instead!

PETA is spot on. The AKC is about money and human arrogance, not about what's in the best interest of dogs.

All of us humans, flawed and "mixed breed" as we are (yes, you are!) should be glad we're not dogs - the AKC and breeders (flawed and multi-ethnic humans, too) would consider all of us to be dirt.

It's about time that someone stood up to breeders! Millions upon millions of healthy, adoptable dogs and cats die in shelters each year because there are not enough good homes. Why? breeders and pet stores. It is beyond me how anyone can justify breeding animals. Way to go PETA!

While breeders churn out pedigree animals—who are susceptible to health problems—countless other dogs, both mixed breeds and purebreds, are euthanized in shelters. After dog shows, shelters tend to see an influx of purebred dogs who were bought on impulse. If you can care for an animal, adopt from a shelter or rescue group, and spay or neuter yor animals.

The distinction of Crufts and the Westminster dog shows is that the audience is looking at the best of the best that breeders have worked hard to produce. The breeders have spent years developing a healthy identifiable pedigreed dog that any family would be proud of. There is a history behind each dog.............a story, a past, a present, and a future. To be able to view what good responsible breeders have produced on a broadcast is the equivalant of watching the Super Bowl or the Olympics.............none of which anyone one of us would want to miss.
Peta and the Humane Society of the United States want to stop pet ownership and they are killing animals as I post this message. They want no one to have a pet or see one on tv period. Don't be brainwashed, the Westminster is intertainment and an education about purebred dogs. Uno is just one example of a breeder's lifetime effort.
Rember what the judge said when he was asked; "How will you know who should be BEST IN SHOW?" His reply, "IN THE MOMENT." Do you remember what Uno did as his handler moved him out? He started to brey like Beagles do when they are on the hunt for hare!!! In the moment, Uno did what all Beagles do and he got a standing ovation. Would you not want to see this again this year??
American Kennel Club registered dogs are the hallmark of quality.

PETA is ridiculous. I admit that I was once ignorant and had only heard, and believed, the bad things about breeders and Dog Shows. Once I met a responsible breeder, who in turn introduced me to other responsible breeders, I realized PETA only portrays the bad examples, that are far outweighed by the good. The dogs and people who are at Westminster are the cream of the crop in this sport. The owners / handlers truly love and care for their dogs. Their goal is to breed the healthy dogs who do not have breed specific health issues. They are also the people who found and support dog rescue groups. They are the ones who end up with, and help the dogs who come from the backyard breeders. USA should definately continue broadcasting this event. They could ALSO run another show on the millions dogs in shelters.

Nice picture you selected to use of Uno. A little mis-leading don't you think? Of all of the wonderful pictures to use of this beautiful Beagle you choose one where he is shaking his head so that he LOOKS deformed and retarded. The only thing deformed and retarded in this article is the L.A. Times and the Liberal Loonies that read it. Rock On Westminster and our wonderful purebred dogs!

I hope that USA does follow the BBC's lead and stops carrying Westminster. From the thousands of puppies bred in miserable, filthy mills to meet the demand for the current popular breed (often promoted at dog shows) to the millions who must be killed every year in shelters due to lack of sufficient homes, breeding dogs is a disaster across the board.

Worse yet, breeding -- more specifically, inbreeding -- results in congenital deformities and other chronic health problems for the "purebred" dogs. It's time to stop pushing the harmful notion that dogs from breeders are somehow better than mutts (often, the opposite is true, in fact). Anyone who wants to bring home a canine friend for life should visit a shelter or rescue society.

What nonsense! PeTA is so full of crap and trying to force their misinformation on caring people. Keep in mind folks - PeTA's favorite solution for animals is to stick a needle in them and kill them and then dump their bodies in the garbage! Their motto is "better dead than fed"! If they had their choice, they would rip even the rescued shelter dog from your arms and kill it rather than have it "dominated" by you. They don't love animals - they HATE people!!

It is a total misconception that mixed breeds are more healthy than purebreds. Responsible breeders routinely screen for health problems. A mixed breed dog has no such testing and can inherit problems from many ancestors. PETA's ultimate agenda is not only to do away with pets but that everyone will be Vegans and we will have NO animals. Animal Rights people will stoop to intimidation, harassment and violence to get their way. They target Westminster every year and USA should not cave into their demands. It is all PR for PETA - they always have some publicity stunt aimed at the Westminster dog show. As for a special on shelter dogs. I have no problem with that type of program BUT people need to realize that we DO NOT have the pet overpopulation problem we once had. It is a known fact that shelters are importing dogs to sell! Not all dogs in shelters are poor homeless strays. The public needs to realize also that kennel clubs like Westminster and responsible breeders help to educate the general public about dogs. TV shows like Westminster help to educate the public not only about dogs in general but responsible dog ownership. They also show the many ways dogs assist people; yes as pets but as therapy dogs, search and rescue etc.

One of PETA's main objectives is to ELIMINATE pet ownership.
"In a perfect world, all other-than-human animals would be free of human interference, and dogs and cats would be part of the ecological scheme, as they were before humans domesticated them and as they remain in some parts of the undeveloped world."
-- From The PETA Statement on Companion Animals
That starving stray cat in your alleyway? That is what PETA is striving for.
That stray dog that hangs out by the school? That is how PETA wants animals that humans developed and select to live WITH humankind.
Your beloved companion that shares your bed? PETA wants that outlawed.
The dog in the shelter waiting to be adopted? PETA euthanized over 85% of the animals that it took in in 2003.
The breeders and exhibitors at Westminster are not the people filling the shelters with dogs. They usually breed only occasionally and remain responsible for every dog for its entire life. That means you can't keep Fluffy? They take him back.
Yes. There are breed specific health problems- good breeders test their prospective "parents" and are working to eliminate these problems. You are just as likely to run in to health problems in a shelter dog or a mixed breed. The difference is a responsible breeder will be there to help you through it, or if you can't deal with it, take the dog back, and support you and the dog they bred.
Bottom line-these exhibitors love dogs. PETA does not.
If you don't like dog shows, change the channel.

Dogs bred for the show ring are the HEALTHIEST dogs on earth. This is why we have breed standards (set by parent clubs and adopted by AKC) and each breed has health testing standards and a Code of Ethics. PETA needs to look for a different foothold because this is a quagmire of rubbish.

As far as adopting from a shelter: If what you want is a pet for your family, then I am ALL FOR THAT. If what you want is a dog for a specialized activity, then you should find a reputable breeder.

Yes, I will absolutely watch Westminster.

I will watch Westminster. PETA is a group that wants to stop all animal ownership...no dogs , no cats, no cows, chickens, etc. They are a radical group which iborders on a cult. I hope that every dog can find a good home and am not opposed to people adopting shelter dogs but get in touch with reality. PETA wants all breeding of animals to stop. This is an opportunistic ploy from this group. Don't be fooled to PETA a dead dog is better than a pet dog. I suspect that their companion group HUSU will come out with a similar message. BEWARE.

I have had purebred dogs all my life (50+ years) and have never had one "plagued with major genetic problems." Of course, I have always gotten my dogs from reputable and ethical breeders. You know, the ones that show their dogs at Westminster. I currently have 3 shorthairs and none of them have been "plagued with major genetic problems." I guess the next shorthair I get will have problems according to the statistics cited in the article. I wonder where Ms. Newkirk got her statistic of 1 in 4. I didn't see a reference anywhere in the article. When I see an article like this that quotes statistics I am always skeptical when a source is not referenced. Anyone can make up numbers.

I will be watching Westminster this year just as I always do. It is a wonderful show and a great way to learn about the various breeds. Thank you USA Network for broadcasting this show and I hope you continue to broadcast it for many years to come.

Oh my gosh! No one listens to PETA anymore. There they go again, the animal abolitionist trying to severe the human/animal contact anyway they can leading to dogs dying or sterialized so, you got it, no more dogs. I bet they think every pet in the world should be sterialized or a dog should be punished for the breed they are and not the deed. Does a picture need to be painted any clearer and, what do people not understand about animal abolutionist part in animal destruction, in the name of organizations like PETA, HSUS and a host of other animal abolitionists? Ingrid needs to busy herself in unloading the freezer because the hazardous waste truck comes tomorrow to pick up the puppy body bags and containing frozen sweet little fluffy pups that once ran and played, and soft, once softly purring and playful sweet little kittens, the death picked up the last couple of days. But instead is attempting to take freedoms from those involved in the sport of showing a beautiful purebreed dog. All of this for what? So everyone will be forced to stop eating meat, and we can all become vegetarians. You got to be kidding! BELIEVE ME PETA and many AR groups are NOT KIDDING. That is the plan. I like beansprouts on my salad .........with my steak.

John -- you're neither ignorant nor stupid, but you have bought two specious arguements of PETA's, first that there is a substantial and increasing number of dogs in shelters and second, that Good Hobby Breeders (the type of breeders whose dogs are exhibited at Westminster) are responsible for the shelter dog population.

PETA is a radical group dedicated to ending all human ownership and use of animals as quickly as possible.

Here are some TRUTHS about Good Hobby Breeders:

GOOD HOBBY BREEDERS spent enormous amounts of time and money researching pedigrees, educating themselves about their breed and dog health in general, do extensive tests on potential breeding stock, look at generations of health testing of potential breeding stock, as well as the laterals (littermates) of potential breeding stock, all in the the attempt to produce the best, healthiest dogs.

GOOD HOBBY BREEDERS donate to and help raise money for canine health research, such as the Morris Animal Foundations $5 million Canine Cancer Campaign (to find the cure and cause of the most common canine cancers), the Rabies Challenge Study (to prove the current rabies vax provides 7 years of immunity so that laws can be changed and dogs not over-vaccinated) and the Seize the Gene Initiative (to find the gene that causes canine epilepsy and the genetic test for it).

GOOD HOBBY BREEDERS interview potential puppy buyers very thoroughly, to insure that potential owners understand the time, effort and cost of raising and training a puppy and having that dog throughout its lifetime. They do NOT sell puppies to anyone just because their credit card clears. They check potential puppy buyers references and offer a long list of their own.

GOOD HOBBY BREEDERS support and educate their puppy buyers for the life of the dog, offering knowledge about the breed and their line of dogs.

GOOD HOBBY BREEDERS sell puppies on contacts that mandate the dog be returned to the breeder if the owner can not keep it for any reason. Their dogs do NOT end up in shelters.

GOOD HOBBY BREEDERS prove the worth of the breeding stock by competing with them in the confirmation ring, companion and performance events.

GOOD HOBBY BREEDERS support the sports of dogs by being active members of local and national breed, kennel and performance clubs.

GOOD HOBBY BREEDERS are extremely proud of their dogs and extremely honest about their dogs. They will dicsuss each dog's strength's and weaknesses and will clearly articulate how they hoped to produce better dogs with a planned breeding.

GOOD HOBBY BREEDERS breed dogs for the love of dogs and the love of their breed. While they make make some money on some litters and lose money on others, overall breeding dogs is not done as a money-making venture.

I own, train and show sporting dogs in confirmation, agility, obedience, tracking and field. I attend Westminster every year and one day I hope to show there.

How about if, in conjunction with televising Groups and BIS at Westminster, the USA Networks did a special on responsible dog ownership, discussing the time, effort and money it takes to own a dog????

Owning a dog is an expensive, time-consuming, long-term commitment.

Owning a dog is also one of the greatest joys on this planet. But as with all good things, it isn't free -- it must be earned.

Why did they use the worst photo they could find of this lovely, sound dog?

PETA is NOT an authority on dogs or any other animals, I don't understand why any newspapers pay attention to them at all.

PETA is becoming the Nazi's of today's society. Telling people what they should and shouldn't watch, what we should & shouldn't eat and the list goes on. I thought this was America? Our country was founded on Life Liberty & the persuit of happiness. I don't like the thought of PETA telling me I can't own a dog or be a breeder. If PETA was so into the ethical treatment of animals, how come they euthanize more animals than any other organization? I'm over PETA and their Terrorist activities. I will be watching Westminster this year - It is my right as a citizen of the good old US S

Peta is just another radical animals rights group

I think people should have the choice of where to get a dog, whether a reputable breeder or a shelter,

The last time I checked, this was still the land of the free, and we have the right to chose.

I am an older person. I don't want a big, unruly dog, with an unknown background. i want to be able to choose a smaller dog, with a background that I can see, and parents that are n premise.

I want to know that a puppy has a certain genetic makeup that will cause it to stay a certain size, with certain type of fur, and certain type of personality. A hound is not a lap dog and would never be happy in that role. Why should I be forced to get a puppy whose health background is not known OR not know how big said puppy will grow up to be.

What do shelter workers know about the dog other than what they can see at a shelter, which is NOT a home environment. Many of the dog bites and dog attacks in the statistics I have read are from shelter dogs!

Please don't take away another right. Those of you who enjoy the fun of having an unknown entity in your home, then more power to you. Enjoy having your cute little mixed breed puppy grow up to be a 100 pound house destroyer!

Just don't take away our right to chose.

this is the most horrible thing I have seen yet, PETA needs to get a life, there are responsible breeders all over, they just choose to show ones that are not, I want to be able to own a dog, and when my kids grow up I want them to be able to do the same, if you all support PETA this right will end, and no one will have a loved and cherished pet in there homes
GO Responsible Dog ownership, and GO all the great breeders/Exibitors out there!!!!!!
Cant wait to see Westminster, hopefully USA is not stupid enough to fall for this,

Instead of spewing all of PETA's letters to everyone else, I wish one of these newspapers would have enuf gumption to do a story on HSUS and PETA's lies - how they mis-spend the money they've collected from people - how they distort the truth for their own means. If people don't won't to watch Crufts - turn the channel. That is censorship in it's true form if it's not carried because of one group's idiotic rhetoric. If PETA wants to cry so much about unadopted shelter animals and how they have to be euthanized, maybe PETA members should stop the practice of picking up animals from a shelter for adoption when in actuality, they are taking them into a back of a van and KILLING THEM themselves.
Wake up LA Times and the rest of you newspapers and do a legitimate story on the farce these 2 organizations are.

Purebred dogs are not the issue...backyard breeders and puppy mills are the issue. The VAST majority of dogs in shelters and rescues are dogs that are either mutts, or originally came from a puppy mill or backyard breeder. You do not routinely find purebred dogs from RESPONSIBLE breeders in rescue. Responsible breeders, the breeders of the vast majority of dogs participating at Westminster, use health tests to ensure that they are not breeding dogs with genetic health problems. Sure, there are some breeders who will lie and present themselves as responsible but aren't....but they are the minority in the show world amongst the true responsible breeders, and there are people in every industry, in every situation that do the same. The minority should not be able to control the rights and privileges of those who are responsible. PETA's strategy is to find the worst of the worst in every possible animal industry/situation and mark it as the norm so that they can slowly remove animals from peoples' lives......please don't let that happen....the more they accomplish, they more momentum they gain.

What people need to understand is that there are no humans or animals without some genetic difference or degree of abnormality. Line breeding and in breeding done with genetically healthy animals will set good traits and should be done by educated individuals. Mixed breeds and poorly bred animals can produce healthly animals or unhealthy animals depending upon the animals being bred.
The only organization that supports healthy breeding and standards is the AKC and the individual breed clubs. What the animal rights activists fail to tell you on purpose is that mixed breeds carry more genetic problems along with a broad range of zoonotic diseases that can be transferred to humans. Witness the family whose young son lost his eye to a worm infestation contacted from a shelter adoption dog. Shelters have been told to keep these diseases from the public because the knowledge would impact upon the public's interest in adopting a mixed breed animal. It is well known that buying from a responsible breeder ensures a healthy animal and clean quarters which is safer for the family. For PETA to claim that only purebred dogs have genetic problems is a smear campaign. They know perfectly well that all animals and humans carry some level of genetic defect. Only responsible breeders have done something about this by breeding responsibly and testing their stock. To lie to the public and say this only happens in purebreds is an out right lie. Mixed breeds adopted from shelters have more health and genetic problems present and future than any responsibly bred pure bred dog. To pick on the few problems within any line is slanting the information since breeders are the only ones working to remove these problems from purebreds by testing and breeding responsibly. As society we don't even test humans for genetic defects before marriage. The only animals tested and bred for health are the purebred dogs when bred by a responsible breeder working toward the breed standard. This is an attempt by PETA a financial supporter of the ALF a terrorist organization to eliminate dogs from our society. They kill more dogs than place and they have killed more feral cats than any group on this earth. What people do not realize is that feral cats and dogs help humans as we help them. Feral cats keep down the rodent populations as 98% of their diet is rodent remains. Without feral cats we especially in the southwest would be subject to the plague or black death as this is one of the remaining locations of this virulent disease. The newspapers should be educating the public on the necessity of living with animals and the good they do for the earth and humans. Printing pr lies for the HSUS and PETA does not represent good public education or help the public to understand the good that domestic animals do. Be aware that PETA and HSUS want to make owning an animal any animal so expensive that domestic animals will be eliminated from this earth. "We have no ethical obligation to preserve the different breeds of livestock produced through selective breeding. ...One generation and out. We have no problems with the extinction of domestic animals. They are creations of human selective breeding" ** Wayne Pacelle * Director of HSUA
PETA supports with money the actions of the ALF and ELF both terrorist organizations.These people are teaching our children that it is their duty to murder, commit arson, and to value human life less than animals. Check your schools and your universities for these cults, don’t support the teaching that human life is of no value. This is a major cult taking over our country and it is using your love of pets to do it. "Even if animal tests produced a cure for AIDS, "We'd be against it."- Ingrid Newkirk, PETA (_Washington_Post * "The optimum human population of earth is zero" .-Dave Foreman, Earth First! "I would be overjoyed when the first scientist is killed by a liberation activist." ** Vivien Smith of ALF (USA Today

Why would anyone listen to a terrorist organization like PETA? What about all the dogs and cats they destroyed rather than find homes for?

The breeders who are represented at Westminster are breeding better healthy dogs..We all should applaud their efforts..The problem is the backyard breeder who breeds for profit and gives no thought to health or conformation..

Please don't listen to the request from PETA. I always watch Westminster. The truth about Purebred dogs is truly NOT found in any extreme opinion. What would help dogs the most is to educate the public. The Westminster broadcast does a fine job towards that objective.

If all folks seeking a dog for the family were to talk to a reputable breeder and learn about the breed they want to have in their homes, then fewer dogs would end up in rescue. Education is paramount.

Don't buy from a pet store, don't buy from a puppy mill, don't buy from a backyard breeder ...... DO ....Rescue and use reputable breeders. DO take the time to learn. Don't be hasty in your decision to acquire a dog.

Take the time to think things through and consider your responsibility for the length of the lifespan of the dog.

If people would either adopt from a shelter, a rescue organization or use a reputable breeder, then these problems would be diminished.

Please keep Westminster Dog Show on the air. THANKS!

QUOTE: "However I will say this: If humans didn't breed dogs, then we wouldn't even have domestic dogs. They wouldn't exist at all. Domesticated dogs only exist because of human-directed breeding."

And therein lies the rub. If anyone really and truly wishes to know what PETA and HSUS are about, read their very own charters, and financial statements!
There is NO connection between these horrid corporations and your local Humane Societies. They are Animal Rights Activists with one and only one intention: to rid the world of all animals kept in 'captivity' as they say, by human beings. If they get their way, there will be NO MORE PETS, no more meat production or egg production in the world. It will take them time, but at the rate that they bilk the public out of money daily with their very few good deeds and lies, it WILL HAPPEN.
Yes there are bad people in the world, but there are also 'preservers of the canine and feline breeds', who know how to breed responsibly and with proper health testing. PETA is going after the wrong target here, they need to stay on the puppymills, and get OFF the backs of the good responsible breeders who do not breed for money, but for the preservation of their breed.

We are now in an era with the animal rightists trying to destroy and discredit breeders of purebred dogs. It must be duly noted that there are no health statistics kept on mixed breeds, just on purebred dogs. Who knows how many mixed breeds die of disease or breed problems gotten genetically from their mixed parentage? Yes, our dogs do have health problems which are recognized by the public because purebred dogs are recognizable and parent clubs try to keep a record of problems, fund research to increase diagnosis, treatment, and hopefully someday elimination of problems.

We need to educate the public about the problems in our breed not hide our heads. We also need to educate the public about the far reaching agenda of the Animal Rights extremists such as PeTA and the HSUS who envision a world where there are no domestic animals or pets enslaved by ownership (animals will run free as nature intended) and everyone will be a VEGAN (the most restrictive and controversial form of vegetarianism). We need to begin to fight fire with fire when it comes to these AR Extremists who seek to undermine our personal freedoms as guaranteed in the Bill Of Rights.

Westminster needs to be aired and the AKC needs to step up to the plate be an integral part of educating the public about the the real objectives of PeTA and the HSUS.

I have three pure bed dogs, all the same breed - all of which are less allergenic than most any dog one could find in a shelter. Having grown up allergic to both dogs and cats, this breed represents the first time I could tolerate not only living with but petting and hugging dogs. They have brought such happiness to my life. The first two were purchased from excellent, reputable breeders our third dog is in fact, a rescue that we were able to adopt by getting involved with the breed club to begin with so when there was a need, we could step up to the plate. Our breed club takes responsibility for seeking out and trying to re-home or offer shelter assistance for our dogs when they appear on Petfinder and in local newspapers. I know that without the AKC and breeder's of my dogs, I would not have the quality and type of dog that I do so I am thankful and able to appreciate when I watch shows like Westminster.

PersonallyI think before anyone responds about suggestions they should thoroughly investigate what PETA and similar organizations are actually about and what they have been attempting to do legally to all of us and our human rights.

I normally do not watch the Dog Show, but since PETA is trying to squash it and make a mountain out of a mole hill yet again, I will make a point of watching it, writing the network about how much i would like to watch it, and tell everyone i know to do the same.

One comment is correct about domesticated animals becoming extinct w/o breeders. While likeit is in every other job there are good and bad, This is no different with breeders and why you should check sources you deal with carefully. To those who state breeders have numerous health issues from incestual breeding, you should see what many of those shelter animals bring home with them.

Most reputable breeders also contribute to rescue groups in some manner and profit is more often non-existent. Many do this for the love and committment of a breed. I thought America wasn't about a group of people being able to push their standards or wishes on an entire nation, or are we quickly accepting the premise of Orwell's "1984?"
Food for thought. :o)

I have been attending dog shows for over 40 years and have watched the Westminster Dog Show every year it has been aired. The Westminster show is the second oldest continuously held sporting event in the US. It is second only to the Kentucky Derby (another event PETA would like to see ended).

The American population should know that PETA is not just against purebred dogs, they are against all pet ownership. PETA is not a friend of shelter animals and has killed nearly every animal ever put in their custody. If you think you agree with PETA, just visit their website and keep an open mind. Just don’t let your brains fall out.

In defense of purebred dogs, dedicated breeders make your pet healthier, better tempered, and more suited to be a part of your family. Do you know that the American Foxhound, a breed developed by George Washington, our first President, is more endangered than polar bears, blue whales, or gorillas? Do you know that several other iconic breeds are also perilously close to extinction?

68 million Americans own dogs. As likable as Owen Wilson and Jennifer Anniston are, people are flocking to the theaters to see the PUREBRED Labrador Retriever in “Marley and Me”, currently number one at the box office. So who are you going to listen to, 68 million dog owners or the guys who want to take your dog away from you?

Billy Wheeler
Dog Show Poop

The website of the Mar Vista Animal Medical Center says that demodectic mange is not a genetic disease, but is a condition caused by a mite which is present on all dogs. Peteducation.com says that "Demodectic mange is not an inherited condition..."

Is PETA simply wrong, or are they trying to mislead me?

Doesn't the LA Times have any fact checkers?

If PETA was truly concerned about the welfare of animals
they would stop killing them themselves then throwing the bodies in dumpsters. Just like the HSUS they are against pet ownership altogether. It is not the purebreds bred by responsible breeders that end up in shelters it's the mutts and puppy mill dogs. Why don't these organizations target the people causing the problems instead of breeders that are doing all they can to produce healthy sound dogs like the ones the public is fortunate to see at shows like Westminster.
What sport will they want to stop having broadcast next?

Sadly, there are still those who BELIEVE in the crap that PETA and the HSUS are spouting. Granted, they talk a good line, but it is all to cloak the fact that they don't want ANYONE to own a dog, cat, or any other "pet." It wasn't that long ago that PETA drove from VA to NC (or the opposite, I forget) to go to a shelter and get animals, telling the administration that they had homes for them. What did they do? They euthanized them right in their van and threw the dead bodies in a dumpster behind a shopping center. They purport to want the best for animals when, in fact, what they want are NO domestic animals PERIOD. Each step is designed to take away people's rights to own an animal. And you all do know that for those of us who love animals, a pet is part of our FAMILY. I totally agree with the responsible breeders who have posted here. EDUCATE yourselves, people, before you take the word of a "domestic terrorist" group such as PETA. Learn about the love, devotion, emotional investments, and heartaches that responsible breeders endure....all for the love of their breed. Responsible breeders do not make a penny on the puppies they sell. I am all for adopting shelter animals, 99% of which come either as mixed breeds or the pure breeds come from COMMERCIAL puppy farms (translations puppy mills.) What we do need to shut down are stores that sell pups, often imported from Mexico with a miriad of health issues, or from local puppy mills who do not take care of the parents, but breed them in small cages until they can no longer breed (or even walk, many of them), then they "put down" those that are no longer worth anything to these "commercial breeders."

Why are you only quoting one side of the story? Why not interview someone from Westminster Kennel Club, the AKC, or a dedicated and reputable purebred dog breeder? It's time for the general public to stop swallowing PETA's propaganda and realize that animal RIGHTS and animal WELFARE are two VERY different things. If you truly want to support groups that work for the better treatment of animals, stay AWAY from organizations like PETA, whose ultimate goal (among others) is to END pet ownership. Meaning, no more pets to enrich our lives.

Susan Palius wrote: Here are some TRUTHS about Good Hobby Breeders:"

Excellent post Susan... and add to that Breeders are responsible for Breed Rescue groups. It it weren't for BREEDERS there would be no Breed Rescues.

H$U$ and PETA need to shut up and put their money where their mouth is... they have millions and millions of dollars.... they could rescue and house every single dog in every single shelter in this country!

It's about time that someone stood up to breeders! Millions upon millions of healthy, adoptable dogs and cats die in shelters each year because there are not enough good homes. Why? breeders and pet stores. It is beyond me how anyone can justify breeding animals. Way to go PETA!

Hello, it is not breeders and pet stores that dump dogs it's the BUYER that no longer wants them. If they dump a breeder or pet store bought dog, why would they go and adopt??? Stop blaming the breeder because the buyer lets their pet down. What a load of crap that has been fed to you and you believe it. Sue

I see the PETA loonies have made it to this site.. LOL.. they are so stupid it is not funny.. really NOT funny.. the saddest thing is that the LA Times would even bother to carry this "letter" and write an article on this insanity.
I exhibited my dog a t Westmsisnter.. did pretty well too.. It was so mcuh fun and oh my.. the quailty fo the dogs .. well.. amazing.. Uno looks NOTHING ike this picture but then we can get vidoes of Lloyd Levine picking his nose too..oh and having a bad hair (plug) day.. not every human or dog gets a great shot every time.. Uno is health tested and will probably sire some wonderful dogs.. will they end up the local shleter.. somehow i doubt it.. more likey that you will be seeing them on the next Westminster show.. i will be GLUED to my TV...USA netowrk.. is exactly what it says USA.... for and by the people.. not by PETA....hmm now where did I put that burger.. the one wth bacon.. and cheese.... LOL

Purebred dogs are not the issue...backyard breeders and puppy mills are the issue. The VAST majority of dogs in shelters and rescues are dogs that are either mutts, or originally came from a puppy mill or backyard breeder.

Why in g*d's name do you blame the the seller?? The person that bought the dog is at fault for not following through on their commitment. It doesn't matter what KIND of dog is in a shelter there was an OWNER that dumped them there. Sue

LOL.. "Englands progressive thinking".. now that is FUNNY.. I suggest Caroline get a one way ticket.. to tha land of little hot water.. no "mixer taps".. the highest rate of dental carries in the Western World.. and socailzed medicine.. not too mention.. cameras on every corner.. and weather that makes California look down right tropical. even the English are leaving in DROVES.. more room for you dear Caroline...Please join the "English" and leave us alone..

PETA is about money, power and celebrity endorsements. They kill most of the animals they take in and do NOT, DO NOT care one bit for any dog, cat, or fish OOPPPSSS... sea kitten. They care about control and sensationalism. Don't eat meat, don't eat fish, don't eat eggs or butter. That poor couple accused of murder for feeding their children a vegan diet that died- YAY, go PETA.

Wake up and think for yourself people. All the politicians are on all fours wagging their tail for PETA hand outs and passing laws that will eventually end pet ownership all together OR, just pass the monopoly on to someone like the H$U$.

If USA network buys that crap PETA feeds or agrees with them I hope every dog food and pet store pulls every ad they may have. I'll never watch it again.

Before long we'll have to crawl on all fours to make PETA happy and they'll have their way... buying us all out one at a time. Sue

I'm sorry but I don't think some of you people understand what Westminster is. It is basically like the Superbowl for NFL. Maybe PETA should try and cancel that? Whoever stated the dogs that don't make it??? I have dogs eligilble to go and I haven't entered them because I might think the judge is bad, or I might not be able to get off work to go, there are a thousand reasons why someone might not take a dog to Westminster. People need to research and find what is real and what isn't. The dog show world is wonderful and has brought so much to so many peoples lives and dogs. PETA should be ashamed. Oh and if some of you didn't know not only dogs are shown cats and birds are also shown. Just like 4H cows, pigs, and many other animals. Oh and yes I've seen this on tv and in the newspaper.


As long as 3 to 4 million perfectly wonderful animals are being euthanized in our shelters year after year for lack of good homes, there is no excuse for breeding more animals. Dog shows help fuel the overpopulation crisis by encouraging people to buy purebred dogs instead of saving lives by adopting shelter dogs. I agree--USA should drop Westminster and air a show about shelter dogs instead!

Oh yes, the shelter dogs... those does IMPORTED into the states that don't have enough shelter dogs to meet the demands of the consumer. The folks taking poor, helpless dogs and SELLING them in the name of adoption and calling all breeders bad- Some of the shelter dogs are even brought in from outside of the country. ARG- wake up and quit buying all the garbage you read. Sue

By far the greatest number of people who are breeding with the intent to produce the best and healthiest dogs, are hobby/show dog breeders. Is this process perfect? NO -- but there's active discussion in every breed, beside every show ring, and on thousands of email groups on what the issues are and how best to improve.

Hobby breeders were the ones to identify most of the known defects and have provided nearly all the money to develop tests and improve breeding strategies.

As other posters have pointed out, these problems are nowhere near as common as the animal rights campaign or the PDE film would have you believe. We've sold around 60 puppies over eight years, we're in touch with all of them, and there are no significant defects yet.

PETA's approach is equivalent to a car owner blaming the mechanic who tells her why her auto stopped on the highway. "Ms. Newkirk, you can blame me all you want, but I've got the tools, the parts, and the experience to fix it, and I don't see any grease under your fingernails." Saying the Westminster show ought to be cancelled is just Ingrid's way of saying "I want the whole thing junked."

And that's exactly what PETA and HSUS do want. The only reason anyone listens to these lying bums is that they have tons of money.

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