Veterinary Support at Shows Regulation Change

Following the recent announcement of a change to the regulation relating to the required level of veterinary support at shows, a further review has been undertaken taking into account the feedback received.

Consequently, the Kennel Club has announced that with immediate effect the requirement that all shows scheduling 200 or more classes are to have a veterinary surgeon on site has been removed and is now replaced with the following amended regulation:  

Regulation F12

'A Show Society is required to arrange veterinary support compatible with the arrangements for the show and the anticipated entry. At shows at which a veterinary surgeon is present, he/she must be on site when the show opens and for the duration of each day's judging. All General and Group Championship Shows must have a veterinary surgeon on site.'

Show societies now have the discretion over their veterinary arrangements, regardless of the number of classes scheduled at their shows. The only exception is general and group championship shows, which must continue to provide an on-site veterinary surgeon.  

Despite the change to the regulation, show societies are still required to undertake a risk assessment to decide whether an on-site vet is needed. Some relevant factors may be:

  • the number of incidents at previous shows where a vet on site would have been beneficial
  • the number of dogs entered at the show - with more dogs, comes the risk of increase in incidents
  • the logistics of providing facilities for an on-site vet

The health and welfare of dogs must be of paramount importance and it is beholden on show societies to provide the appropriate level of veterinary cover for their show.

Caroline Kisko, Kennel Club Secretary said: "Having reviewed the feedback received on this matter, the General Committee felt strongly that it was no longer appropriate to have a baseline requirement to determine a show's level of veterinary cover, except at general or group championship shows. It was appreciated that for some show societies it is no longer financially viable to appoint a vet to be on-site throughout the show, and that the alternative arrangement of having a vet 'on call' had become custom and practice without significant adverse effect on the health and welfare of dogs at shows."