Torture breeding of dogs - the animal breeding of suffering

Pomeranian Dog cute

What does " torture breeding" actually mean?

The term "torture breeding" means the explicit breeding of certain unhealthy characteristics in a dog breed, which results in the bred dogs having health problems and suffering throughout their lives. Appearance, which follows temporary fashion trends, and the profit made by the breeders are placed above the health of the individual dog and the breed. The animals are condemned to a life of torment - and for what? To make them look cute for their uninformed or ignorant owners. This is nothing other than animal cruelty, which also involves high veterinary costs. This often leads to dog owners being unable to take care of their dogs - and the result is that animal shelters are often overburdened.

Which breeds of dogs are affected by torture breeding?

Many people associate a particular dog breed with torture breeding: big googly eyes, a shortened head and a flat nose - this refers to the Pug. This breeding-related deformation of the head, as in the Pug, often also in the French or English Bulldog or the Boxer, leads to heavy births, breathing problems, brain tumours and other terrible diseases. This clinical picture is called brachycephaly or brachygnathia and is primarily the result of cruelty breeding. Another consequence is, for example, the crippling of the spinal column, which becomes apparent by a stumpy or corkscrew tail. This condition is often accompanied by chondrodysplasia, or dwarfism. Symptoms range from mild back pain, organ displacement and digestive problems to paralysis. The French Bulldog, the Welsh Corgi and especially the Dachshund are also affected.

A blue-grey lightening of the coat, which can lead to severe skin inflammations, also counts as torture breeding. Several dog breeds are affected by the so-called Blue Dog Syndrome, such as the Pit Bull, Great Dane, Dachshund, Australian Shepherd and many others. HD and ED (hip and elbow dysplasia) are joint diseases that are often caused by overbreeding and torture breeding. Especially large dog breeds are often affected. Well-known for HD problems are shepherd dogs, Bernese and Swiss mountain dogs and Rottweilers. Unfortunately, there are many other disease patterns resulting from torture breeding, so the motto is always: watch out when buying a puppy!

What can we do against torture breeding?

The answer is quite simple: never buy dogs from a cruelty breed! Look for a breeder who attaches importance to a healthy continuation of the breed - if it is to be a pedigree dog. The puppy should have papers proving that the parents are free of disease. Torture breeding is prohibited according to the Animal Welfare Act paragraph (§) 11b. However, this does not stop dubious breeders and/or breeders based abroad from breeding dogs with profit-making ideals of beauty. Many online portals and dog clubs speak out against cruelty breeding and offer lists of responsible breeders. In the best case, you can also find your faithful companion in an animal shelter. We stand behind the motto: Adopt - don't shop!

Together against animal cruelty: What always helps is to talk about problems. Discuss with us and with others, make the ignorant aware of the issue. Let's work together against animal cruelty: Do you have ideas and suggestions, projects and inspirations that you would like to start together with William Walker? Write in the comments or directly by email to the author of the blog posts at

Cut Pomeranian Dog in a dog bed

This is how we at William Walker feel about torture breeding:

We need to talk...

We sometimes receive messages criticising our handling of the issue of "torture breeding" or the dog breeds concerned. We regularly post our so-called #friendsofwilliamwalker - breed portraits on our blog, in which we present various dog breeds in the form of a profile. Our aim is to provide purely factual information and not to recommend a purchase or even promote a dog breed. Our blog is there to give you helpful information, to entertain you, to find similarities and differences in the field of dog training and, of course, to discuss them with you. In the breed portrait we have, among others, also portrayed dog breeds affected by torture breeding, of course with a reference to this problem.

It also happens that we post pictures of dogs from torture breeds in our articles or on our Instagram account. We don't choose them explicitly, they just happen to be wearing our collars or leashes on the street or belong to a colleague or friend. Of course we prefer to show you healthy and happy dogs! But even dogs that result from torture breeding have a right to exist for us. They can't help where they come from, they are there and part of this world. To pretend that they don't exist would be ignorant, unfair and not effective from our point of view. We have to draw attention to the problem and we have to portray these races. This is the only way to discuss the issue, the only way to find solutions and approaches to ultimately change something.

In our blog or in our pictures, we advertise our products, our dog accessories, but never breeds. We love all dogs, all people and stand for a social, tolerant and friendly coexistence among all living beings.

We say no to the torture breeding of dogs.

Nevertheless, we would like to speak out clearly against the purchase of dogs from so-called "torture breeding". We urgently advise against buying a dog with a clearly shortened nose or respiratory tract or similar cultivated pathological characteristics from a breed. This is because demand determines supply on the animal market as well. Besides, buying a seriously ill animal is guaranteed to take a lot of time and money with various vets and experts. So you are not only harming the dogs, but also yourself.

However, we would also like to mention: There is no reason why you shouldn't rescue one of these poor, bred creatures from the shelter and adopt it. The dogs are there and they do not deserve to be outcast and lonely because of the irresponsible actions of profit-oriented breeders.

By Louisa Knoll

1 comment

Hey Louisa,
Toller Text zum Thema Qualzucht.

Schön auch der Bezug zum allgemeinen Umgang ;)

Dürfte den ein oder anderen Menschen zur Selbst- Reflektion animieren .


Susanna Vellguth February 10, 2022

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