The Statement from the Finnish Griffon Club concerning the registration protocols of the brachycephalic dog breeds
The Finnish Griffon Club wishes to express its deep concern regarding the recently made definitions in the Netherlands in order to reform their animal welfare laws when it comes to the snub-nosed and brachycephalic breeds. The Dutch legislation defines accurately the cranio-facial ratio of the brachycephalic parents intended to breeding and the breeds currently involved are affenpinschers, boston terriers, english bulldogs, griffons belge and bruxellois, petit brabançons, japanese chins, king charles spaniels, pugs, pekingeses and shih tzus. In practice this definition is putting the stop to the registration of all these above mentioned short-muzzled breeds. The definition is not based on the researched evidence of the health matters in these breeds, nor it is based on the impact of the muzzle-length in the animal welfare, but this agenda is pursued by other motives.
These new registration terms will make the breeding and the registering of the Griffon breeds in the Netherlands simply impossible. At the same time the increased numbers of non-registered ”black market” puppies will be seen. As the consequence it is apparently possible to get destroyed for good some historical breeds, as we got to know them. The breeders and the breed clubs have remained powerless in this matter. The legislation ignores completely the huge international effort that has been made for the future welfare of these breeds in the standard respecting manner.
Also in Finland they have put a plenty of effort into the development of the suitable surveying methods that would be measureable, repeatable and therefore reliable in collecting the health data. For example the Finnish KC’s walking test that is designed for the brachy breeds collects the data from the dog’s breathing, body temperature and his or her ability to recover from the exercise. Within the Griffon breeds the effects of the brachycephalia seem to be minor when it comes to the breathing and the general welfare of the dog. One possible reason for this is the long establishment of the breed: the breed type is old and stable. The breed hasn’t stepped onto the path of breeding exaggerations during the recent decades for example when it comes to the short muzzles, but has remained very much the same all the way from the 19th century.
Altogether 29 (May 2020) Griffons have been surveyed in the authoritized FKC’s walking test events during the years 2019 and 2020. All these tested Griffons have passed the test and the majority of these (26/29) has got the BOAS0 grading. The rest three got the BOAS1 grading.
We sincerely hope that the work that the breed clubs are doing for the research and the welfare of their breeds would be cherished and the Dutch example would not get more growth base in the European legislation.
The dog’s welfare and the improvement of the health matters must be in the centre of all our actions. Basically we believe in the co-operation and expertise between the dog owners, the breeders, the breed clubs, the scientists, the veterinaries, the breeding committees, the kennel clubs and the FCI.
In his open letter also the President of the FCI Mr. Tamas Jakkel has reacted to the Dutch definitions that are to restrict the breeding of the brachycephalic breeds. You can read his letter here:
For more information about the Dutch definitions see: