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The Dutch Kennel-club is in violation with the Rules of the FCI

The decision of the Dutch Kennel-club, not to issue pedigrees from May 18th  2020, is in our opinion a violation of the regulations of the FCI, the umbrella organisation of the kennel-clubs from all over the world. We will try to clarify.

How did we came there?

In the Netherlands, the government had enforcement criteria drawn up by the Faculty of Veterinary Medicine of the University of Utrecht, to prohibit breeding with brachycephalic dogs. The dogs are condemned on the nose length in the CFR. In short, the CFR indicates the ratio between nose length and skull length. If it is below 0.3 then it is not allowed to breed with it. The University of Utrecht assumes that there is a causal relationship between nose length and BOAS, the disease that concerns respiratory problems that occur in dogs with a short muzzle. 

The director of the Dutch Kennel-Club deceives the FCI, by mentioning that it is allowed to breed with Brachycephalic dogs with CFR>0,3 and denies the generalist principles of the law. This cannot take away that the Dutch Kennel-Club makes a public statement that it concerns 12 breeds. In short, they acknowledge that they agree with the generalist and discriminatory principles of the enforcement criteria of the minister who denies the integrity of every dog on its own. The FCI does not. This should lead to a confrontation between the Dutch Kennel-Club and the FCI.

The Dutch Government does not prohibit the issue of pedigrees.

A pedigree is a proof of parentage, to be issued by the Dutch Kennel-Club according to its contractual obligation towards both the breeders and the FCI.  That it is not forbidden by law to issue this pedigree,  is confirmed by the Kennel Club by issuing another, an adjusted proof of parentage which clearly states that it is not a pedigree. In doing so, the Kennel-Club goes further than the government. This pedigree ban for brachycephalic dogs has been introduced without consultation with its members, the breed associations concerned, as well as with the FCI. This misstep can hurt the Dutch Kennel-Club deeply.

The Dutch Kennel-Club is in a difficult position. Partly due to its position among other members of Fairdog (a group, that once again, tries to bring healthy and responsible bred dogs onto the market) including the action group (‘Animal and Law/Dier en Recht)’. An impossible position has arisen due to the continuing attacks of the action group, to refuse pedigrees to the short muzzled breeds. It is known to ‘Animal and Law’ that pedigrees are a weak spot for the pedigree breeders. They set the  goal to tear down pedigrees. And as a cross-breeder stated correctly ‘the Dutch Kennel-Club has become an ocean steamer in the canals of Amsterdam’.  Their freedom of movement is limited on all sides. This continuous navigation makes it impossible to manoeuvre hence the position they are in now.

The devil is in the detail. 

We cannot deny that the Dutch Kennel-Club must keep pedigrees of dogs that comply with the breeds and standard, recognized by the FCI. (see Article 20.13 of the Statutes and Article 20.1 of the Standing Order). There is only one exception possible; if the dog suffers from hereditary diseases (see article 20.5 of the Standing Order) . However, by refusing pedigrees to breeds instead of dogs, the Dutch Kennel-Club cannot use this exemption rule, because they cannot demonstrate that the dog meets this exclusion criterion.  The life-threatening danger for the FCI, is that if the Dutch Kennel-Club gets away with this exemption rule, the FCI implicitly recognizes the Dutch enforcement criteria of the Brachy breeds and thus ban all of them, yes all of the brachycephalic breeds. A consequence which, in our opinion, will not be welcomed in the rest of the world. This seems to me an unthinkable situation, nor is it the intention of this exemption possibility.

In short, if the Dutch Kennel-Club does not register any more pedigrees of the brachycephalic breeds, it is acting contrary to article 20.13 of the Statutes and 20.1 of the Standing orders and/or it does not recognize all breeds of the FCI, which is also contrary to the Statutes. Because of this, the Dutch Kennel-Club no longer complies with the condition to be a member of the FCI.

And then there’s another nasty misunderstanding:

The point that the Dutch Kennel-Club states in one of its publications that they are disappointed that our government doesn’t ban the import of the short muzzled breeds surprised the president if the FCI.

‘The Dutch kennel-Club regrets that the minister does not implement the necessary additional regulations for example on the import of short muzzled dogs’ writes the Dutch Kennel-Club.

The irony is, by telling half-truths to the FCI, it back fires. After all, the Dutch Kennel-Club is probably thinking of all the puppy mill dogs and look-a-likes that are now allowed to cross the Dutch border freely while the FCI president is thinking of the short muzzled pedigree dogs. Both are right because an import ban would hit both categories. A conversation between the two organisations is going to be really necessary.

A quote from the FCI chairman Tamás Jakkel:

 “accepting the national legislation is one thing but calling for more, needs a serious discussion with our member”

The upcoming meeting between the FCI and the Dutch Kennel-Club

The conversation could already have two items on the agenda. We hope, a constructive and open discussion between both parties, but it seems to me that the Dutch Kennel-Club should put its intention to refuse pedigrees as of the 18th of  May on hold until after the meeting.

Going radically against the obligations of the Dutch Kennel-club with the FCI seems to me something that can not only be decided by the board of the Dutch Kennel-Club, but something that requires a general meeting of members and breed clubs concerned. After all, it is no longer just about the Netherlands, but it has consequences for all countries and Kennel Clubs that are members of the FCI.

Edwin Meyer Viol

Stichting Ras en Recht

Foundation Breed and Justice

The statutes of the FCI:

‘20.13. The pedigrees issued by a Member or a Contract Partner must be accepted by all the Members and Contract Partners as “documents proving that the pups are born of pedigree parents from the same breed’.

In de standing orders of the FCI find:

Article 20 – Studbooks

20.1. Every Member and Contract Partner must keep a studbook for all the breeds recognised on a definitive basis by the FCI

20.5. Any Member or Contract Partner can refuse to (re)-register in its studbook, or alternatively can (re-)register with a “limited registration: not to be used for breeding”, a DOG suffering from hereditary defects or featuring defects which go against the Article 3 of the Statutes or a dog which does not comply with the rules of selection defined by the Member or Contract Partner in question.

The Dutch Kennel-club is in violation with the Rules of the FCI

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