Recently, I read the hot news from the American Barbet Club, spreading the message in a world-wide barbet forum on facebook! Worth knowing? Not much!
In their posts, it is to be read that 27% barbet is the carrier of the eye disease Prcd-PRA. This figure is calculated on 33 tested barbets. Nothing about the size of the total population or the test’s design and origin, selection, whether the test is validated for the barbet? How many are affected and is it a problem for the breed in whole? Are breeders and stud owners testing their old dogs used in breeding to follow up their own evaluation?
It is a great opportunity to educate, but instead, the breed club blows up a scarecrow that completely lacks anchoring in a wider perspective. Misleading information that creates anxiety and fear is definitely the wrong way to go if we want to enlighten and guide to help. How can we track a source when we refuse to recognize the background of our dogs? Can we be helped by studying the health history of the other breeds actually in the barbet? As usual, few facts are provided surrounded by a variety of many many unanswered questions.
We stare ourselves blind to an isolated detail while we refuse to recognize our dogs originate. To create perspective, to understand and get a more complete picture of reality. Of course, we need verified information, but we must not forget the great value of education in how to interpret and use these data.
Breed clubs are informers and guides and should think carefully before they publish their information. The Swedish Breed Club has acted irresponsible, the American show the same tactics. The Swiss Breed Club makes its own guidelines that benefit some and disadvantages others. A fact that has now led owners to go abroad to mate their females and thus get their puppies registered in other countries. The French Breed Club cracked and SCC (the French Kennel Club) seems (?) to be the one who took over responsibility for the Barbet. In Britain, with its distinguished Kennel Club (KC), the barbet is not yet an approved breed, instead, breeders register their dogs in France. Misleading the statistics, which also imparts an incorrect picture of reality. The German Breed Club for Barbet wrote with good review in their latest news that the French Breed Club reached the end of the road. The big question is if we do not jointly lead the breed on the same track when we inferiorly ignore both knowledge and education?