Breed Watch Enhancements

The Kennel Club will shortly be announcing some changes to Breed Watch and the following email outlines how the changes will affect your breed.

The Kennel Club is expanding its monitoring of breed health and welfare to ensure that we can provide breed health representatives with more information to enable them to continue to protect the future health of their breed.


Breed Watch is now a 3 tier process which all breeds form part of and your breed falls in to Category 1. Being in Category 1 will not affect the way your breed is exhibited.  Currently no visible points of concern have been listed against your breed on Breed Watch. Therefore judges are not required to provide mandatory reports on the health of the breed.


The Kennel Club now has a clear process in place to demonstrate how the visible health of breeds is monitored and how breeds are added and removed from Breed Watch.  This new process is clearly shown on the diagram attached.

The structure of Breed Watch is changing to allow for a greater involvement by Judges in the reporting on and monitoring the points of concern and the Kennel Club will enter into regular communication with and feedback to clubs on any significant issues which are reported. This does not change the Breed Club(s) ability to report any suggestions or changes for Breed Watch.


How will judges be involved?


From 2014 all Judges at Championship Shows will have the opportunity to report on any visible conditions or exaggerations that they consider to be detrimental to the health and welfare of any breed.  Therefore for breeds such as yours, which are not currently listed on Breed Watch, a simple, straightforward form will be provided in the back of each championship show judging book.  Judges are being encouraged to take this opportunity to be part of breed health monitoring. Once the form is returned to the Kennel Club, these comments will be added to those from other judges and reviewed by the Dog Health Group.


These changes are also to ensure that Judges have an important role in maintaining the highest levels of canine health and welfare in pedigree dogs. With the introduction of the new reporting systems, Judges are now at the heart of improving the visible health of pedigree dogs. Whilst there are already a number of show regulations in place which give authority to withhold awards or suggest or request a dog be removed from the ring or in extreme circumstances to exclude a dog from the ring on the grounds of health and welfare; judges are now being given the opportunity to report on any emerging health or welfare issues they pick up on whilst judging. This does not change the Breed Club(s) ability to report any suggestions or changes for Breed Watch.

The Kennel Club has produced a set of frequently asked questions (FAQs) to address a range of queries which you might have. These and a copy of the Breed Watch booklet are enclosed for your information.

The changes announced in this letter will provide breed representatives and the Kennel Club with early warning of emerging points of concern, which in turn will allow for the correct resources to be put in place to protect and improve the health of a breed. It also demonstrates a transparent process for removing and adding breeds to Breed Watch.  Throughout this process there will be regular communication with Breed Club(s)/Councils.

If you have any queries or require further information about Breed Watch please contact the Kennel Club, Health & Breeder Services Department by emailing [email protected]


Copies of the FAQs and the Breed Watch Booklet will are now available in the documents section.

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