I must start by thanking all of you who sent flowers, cards and messages when Debbie and I had to say goodbye to Fizz. As I have said so many times all dogs are special to their owners, but to know how many of you had lovely memories of Fizz meant so much to both of us. I also learned that there is an Elkhound breeder and Exhibitor in the US who reads my notes which was lovely to know. Interestingly she told me she had always followed the breed since her first trip to Crufts in 1976 which introduced her to them, on that occasion she also met several Buhund owners and bought things from the club’s stall, something of course we do not have nowadays. Further trips to visit Kitty Heffer also helped her appreciate them.
It has been a week of up and downs, the up was the good news that the Kennel Club Charitable Trust who funded the Canine Genetics Centre when it opened at the AHT in 2009, will now fund it at the University of Cambridge, they have been storing 40,000 plus samples since the AHT closed. The centre when at the AHT found DNA tests for over 50 breeds. The centre will be led by Dr Cathryn Mellersh who helped us with the Ataxia DNA test. It is hoped that DNA testing will start again in July, which is good news so that we can test any Buhund that is not already tested for Ataxia, and you never know we might even get a test for HC one day!
The down has been the cancellation of Crufts, although to be honest I think it was the right decision in these unpredictable times with Covid. The Crufts committee have detailed all the reasons that made them come to their decision. I know many will be sad, but much better for all concerned to cancel it now than at the last minute, and it would not have been a Crufts as we know it, so better to cancel rather than have a second-rate event. Hopefully, the other Ch shows will be able to go ahead, certainly many of them are outside shows which should help, then the dogs who have never even been to a show will be able to qualify for next year’s Crufts. Please give a thought though for the organisers of all events. In the past I was the secretary for 25yrs for one of the biggest one-day horse shows in the country, so I know only too well all the problems that can crop up even on the night before the event and that was without worrying about Covid!
With summer on its way and remembering how hot it was last year for several days I was reading an interesting article on heat stroke in dogs. You may remember that last year I was shocked to suddenly realise ‘Time’ was beginning to suffer, when he had been out in the garden on a very hot day and as far as I knew had not been doing anything much. We all know how dogs can die in hot cars and not to walk or exercise dogs in the heat of the day, but Time had just been out in the garden on his own. I had seen dogs in the past suffering with heat stroke, so I knew what to do and quickly took him into the shower and soaked him with tepid water, even then it still took him a while to recover, and I was just about to take him to the vet when his breathing calmed down. The article said over half of the dogs that are taken to vet with severe heat stroke, die. This number can be greatly reduced if cases are recognised and treated early, either by cooling down by the owner with tepid water if they are able to do this or are taken to the vet, speed is of the essence in all cases of heat stroke as the dog can deteriorate very quickly. The most common signs are breathing problems and the dog not wanting to move. It was a large study over a period of a couple of years, in the most severe cases dogs had seizures, vomiting and went unconscious, once dogs were at this stage, they were much more likely to die. The article said raising awareness of the early warning signs was vital in making sure dogs survive.
Stay safe everyone.
Margaret Deuchar firstname.lastname@example.org
The views expressed in Margaret’s Breed Notes are hers and hers alone and do not necessarily reflect the views of the Norwegian Buhund Club of the UK.