Supporting scientific research

Puppy sat on lady

The International Canine Health Awards

The International Canine Health Awards, an initiative administered by The Kennel Club Charitable Trust and underwritten by a major gift from Vernon and Shirley Hill, founders of Metro Bank, recognise innovative researchers and veterinary scientists whose work has had a positive impact on the health and well-being of dogs. In 2019, the International Canine Health Awards donated £61,000 to scientific research to help improve the health of dogs.

The Kennel Club's own research

To help improve our knowledge and awareness of health issues in the dogs that we register, The Kennel Club have carried out a number of extensive research projects.

Find out more about our health research, which includes:
  • The 2004 purebred dog health survey
  • The 2014 pedigree breed health survey
  • Effective population sizes

The Kennel Club Genetics Centre at the Animal Health Trust

The Kennel Club Genetics Centre at the Animal Health Trust contributes significantly towards research into inherited canine disease, testing around 10,000 dogs each year and creating new diagnostic DNA tests for various inherited diseases.

The Kennel Club Cancer Centre at the Animal Health Trust

The Kennel Club Cancer Centre at the Animal Health Trust helps pets receive the latest treatment and invests in ways to better understand the disease.

Helping researchers get participants

The Kennel Club regularly assists veterinary researchers in promoting current studies by emailing breed health co-ordinators, veterinary contacts and owners of relevant breeds, as well as promoting the studies on social media. In 2018, The Kennel Club emailed around 330,000 dog owners and breeders to promote 66 different independent health surveys, research projects and health clinics.

The Kennel Club Charitable Trust

In the last three years (2017 - 2019), The Kennel Club Charitable Trust (KCCT) donated over £1.5 million in grants, with 61% going towards science and research. The Kennel Club health team currently works closely with the following research groups:

  • Brachycephalic Obstructive Airway Syndrome (BOAS) at Cambridge University - the aim of this study is to improve the health of dogs which are already affected by BOAS and to create breeding tools to help breeders make informed choices and ultimately breed healthier puppies
  • German Shepherd gait and movement at the University of Surrey - a research project to investigate how German Shepherd Dogs stand and move, advancing our understanding and potentially providing information that could be of benefit to all dogs
  • The Veterinary Companion Animal Surveillance System (VetCompass), a not-for-profit research project at The Royal Veterinary College (RVC), investigates the range and frequency of companion animal health problems by using data stored in individual computerised veterinary practice management systems