Due to improvements in the health of the French Bulldog and the
substantial health programmes put in place by the parent breed
club, the Kennel Club today (Wednesday 30thOctober) announces the
removal of the French Bulldog from the high profile breed list with
The removal means that French Bulldog Best of Breeds or
potential Champion dogs will no longer be subject to a veterinary
health check at Championship shows. The visible health of the breed
will continue to be monitored by the Kennel Club as the breed moves
from the highest classification on its Breed Watch system, category
three, to category two.
Under category two of Breed Watch, the French Bulldog breed
health co-ordinator will still be required to submit a
comprehensive annual breed health report and judges will still be
required to submit mandatory health monitoring forms after each
appointment. The Kennel Club will continue to work closely with
breed representatives and offer support and advice with health and
The decision to remove the French Bulldog from the high profile
breeds list was made by the Kennel Club following a recommendation
from the Kennel Club Dog Health Group, which has been following the
health of the breed and discussing the health programmes with the
breed health co-ordinator, Penny Rankine-Parsons.
Penny Rankine-Parsons says: "We have been working hard to
progress the health of the French Bulldog and we are encouraged
that our efforts have been recognised and the breed has been
removed from the high profile breed list.
"The breed has seen a dramatic growth in popularity in recent
years, and with this has seen a rise in the number of people
breeding, which is why it is vitally important for us to
communicate with everyone about the need to follow our health
programmes which are easy to follow and are available for anyone to
see on our website."
Caroline Kisko, Kennel Club Secretary explains: "The Kennel Club
no longer considers it necessary for French Bulldogs to undergo
veterinary health checks at General & Group Championship Shows,
as the breed health co-ordinator and breed representatives have
been consistently and comprehensively managing visible health
concerns within the breed and therefore fulfil the high profile
breed removal criteria.
"The French Bulldog representatives have demonstrated to the
Kennel Club an improvement in the visible health of the showing
population and provided detailed information of a long and short
term health and welfare strategy to ensure they safeguard the
future of the breed.
"What we want to see is improvements, which are now clearly
visible in the show population, across the breed as a whole. Show
dogs are seen as being the leaders in breeding and the improvements
we have seen in dogs competing in the show ring will undoubtedly
have an effect on the health of non-show dogs. Furthermore, due to
the hard work of the French Bulldog breed clubs and breeders, puppy
buyers are more informed than ever before and are encouraged to
join in with health initiatives. Higher numbers of French Bulldogs
in the show ring will mean the more we can help make a difference
to the health of the breed as a whole.
"I would like to commend the dedication, passion and commitment
of the French Bulldog owners and exhibitors who have participated
in health testing for both visible and hereditary conditions. The
French Bulldog is a breed pre-disposed to conformational health and
welfare concerns, however those who have been involved in the breed
health scheme have demonstrated that with responsible ownership,
considerate breeding, transparency of information and accessibility
of education and advice to owners, French Bulldogs can live long,
happy, healthy lives."
There are now 13 breeds which remain on the Kennel Club's High
Profile Breed list: the Basset Hound, Bloodhound, Bulldog. Chow
Chow, Clumber Spaniel, Dogue de Bordeaux, German Shepherd Dog,
Mastiff, Neapolitan Mastiff, Pekingese, Pug, St Bernard and Shar