Cancellation of Health Day 2017



Many of you will know that the Great Dane Breed Council’s 4th Bi-Annual Health Day at Liverpool University’s Leahurst Campus,  Chester had to be cancelled.  This decision being taken due to the disturbing lack of interest shown by those involved in the Breed. Those who had booked tickets were once again mainly attendees of previous HD’s.  With the exception of DCM featuring at each Health Day, a variety of subjects have been put on, from Bone Cancer, Conformational Eye Defects, Bloat etc. This despite general requests for topic suggestions that have not been forthcoming. The venue was moved from Crick to Leahurst following complaints that the former was too far South!

Conspicuous by their absence at previous HD’s were many of the leading Dane folk, together with the newer enthusiasts. This does not bode well for the future of Great Danes at a time when show entries are falling, little interest in health matters and Club Committee membership seems to be the order of the day.

It is a historical fact that members of our breed do not respond enthusiastically to matters relating the health of our breed. A typical example of this is the Wobblers project that had to be abandoned when only twenty blood samples were forthcoming in fifteen years and much money had been ploughed into the project. We really should “hang our heads in shame”.

Over the years since the Breed Council was registered, there has been criticism from certain quarters that the BC does little or nothing, when actually that is far from the case. The list of actions generated by the BC is extensive eg Obtaining, together with Liverpool Uni some £60k from the Kennel Club Charitable Trust for Research into DCM, the addition of the Mantle to the Breed Standard, obtaining a place on the Give a Dog a Genome Project being carried out by the Animal Health Trust in conjunction with the KC (Wobblers being the selected issue), to name but a few from list far too long to note here.

There is no doubt that many are reluctant to support/get involved in any initiatives that the Breed Council’s eight Member Clubs bring forward. Indeed, if we are unable to give support to opportunities provided by your Breed Council/Clubs, how will we be able to cope with the demands of the Judges Competency Framework (JCF),  in particular those that directly affect the Breed Clubs? Perhaps we can look forward to an excellent response to the Breed Judges Survey that the BC is launching in relation to the JCF.

If you disagree with any of the above we would be pleased to hear from you and as to why there is an apparent lack of interest and support.

Tony Pearce

Breed Council Chairman

October 2017