Resist the pester power, vets urge parents as Pug film hits screens - Veterinary Practice
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Resist the pester power, vets urge parents as Pug film hits screens

Vets fear that parents may soon be
fielding more requests for pet Pugs
as Disney’s latest film, featuring flat-faced “hero” Patrick, hits screens. The
BVA is urging parents to resist any
pester power prompted by the film
because the dogs are prone to painful
breed-related deformities.

In an effort to dissuade families
from adding a Pug to their household, BVA has released new statistics
showing that 98 percent of companion
animal vets treated brachycephalic
dogs for health issues last year.

Overall, 95 percent of practices
treated at least one brachycephalic
dog with eye problems, 93 percent
treated breathing issues and 89 percent treated skin problems.

BVA President John Fishwick said:
“We know from past films that when a
dog takes a starring role their breed
often experiences a surge in popularity for years afterwards. That’s why a
film featuring a flat-faced Pug is unhelpful at a time when vets and other
welfare organisations are desperately
trying to discourage ownership of
these breeds.

“Filmgoers, including young children, may well be charmed by the
antics of Patrick but the reality is that
thousands of Pugs and other flat-faced dogs such as French Bulldogs
struggle with serious health problems, which often require invasive
and costly surgery to correct.”

The Brachycephalic Working Group
(BWG) has met with Disney to provide
advice and information on how the
company can manage this anticipated
interest in the breed. The BWG has
fed into and agreed on a number of
actions with Disney, including the
addition of a welfare message into
the credits section of the film, leaflets
describing the health issues of the
Pug breed to be distributed at UK
cinemas and a ban on merchandising
of Patrick Pug memorabilia.

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