Take A ‘Healthy Selfie’ Of Your Dog For National Canine Health Testing Week

For this year's National Canine Health Testing Week (17 - 21 November), dog owners are being encouraged to show off their healthy and happy dogs by taking a 'healthy selfie' of their pet and uploading it to social media with the hashtags #doghealthyselfie and #NCHTW.

The campaign aims to help spread the word about the importance of using recommended health testing before breeding, and buying puppies from appropriately health tested parents.

The Kennel Club is calling for those who support canine health testing to take a photo of their dogs with a piece of paper or card in front of them with a statement written on demonstrating their support for canine health testing, such as 'I support National Canine Health Testing Week', 'I've been hip scored' or 'Health tested and proud'.  These photos should then be uploaded to social media, using the hashtags #doghealthyselfie and #NCHTW to show the world that dog owners care about the importance of health testing.

National Canine Health Testing Week is one of the Kennel Club's annual initiatives to raise awareness of the importance of breeding and buying puppies responsibly, from appropriately health tested dogs.  During the week, breeders and puppy buyers will be provided with information on which health tests are available for their dogs, tools to assist breeders in making health related breeding decisions and information for puppy buyers to ask the right questions before buying a puppy.

Aimee Llewellyn, Health Information Manager, said: "Posting a 'healthy selfie' during National Canine Health Testing Week is a great way to help raise awareness of the importance of canine health testing.  Everyone loves taking photos of their dogs and sharing them online, and this is a great platform for breeders and owners to highlight health tests that are important for their dogs.

"This is a fun opportunity to send out positive health messages, so if there is a DNA test or a BVA/KC scheme or Breed Club scheme available for a breed, then breeders and owners can use this opportunity to show their support."

The awareness week will also highlight the value of health testing both purebred and crossbreed dogs prior to mating, so the photos posted online can be of any dog, regardless of whether they are a Kennel Club recognised breed or not.

Although National Canine Health Testing Week focuses on health testing, it also raises awareness of the many other important factors for breeders when choosing two potential mates, such as genetic diversity, the way a dog looks and behaves, general health and family history. A breeder's decision should always be well balanced between all of the good qualities of the sire/dam that are being considered.

During the awareness week, the Kennel Club will be publicising statistics, information and resources regarding canine health testing on the Kennel Club Facebook and Twitter accounts.

To find out how to get involved, to view  resources, or see examples of #doghealthyselfie photos, please visit www.thekennelclub.org.uk/health/national-canine-health-testing-week/ or follow the Kennel Club on Facebook and Twitter.

Copyright © The Kennel Club Limited 2019. The unauthorised reproduction of text and images is strictly prohibited.