As part of the National Greyhound Welfare Strategy, Greyhounds Australasia is proposing to introduce some national rule changes relating to brood bitches and breeding. The following will help you to understand what is being proposed and why.
What will the proposed changes mean?
There are four key changes being proposed that participants need to be aware of. They are:
- A Requirement for all brood bitches to be registered with controlling bodies as a “breeding female” prior to being bred for the first time.
- A new rule that will prevent brood bitches over the age of eight from being mated, without prior veterinary certification of appropriate health and fitness and the approval of a controlling body
- The establishment of a National Breeding Review Panel which will decide whether a brood bitch who has had three litters is allowed to be mated with for a fourth or subsequent time
- A new rule limiting the frequency of litters for an individual brood bitch to two litters in any 18 month period
Why are the changes being proposed?
A number of welfare benefits will be achieved by these proposed changes. Among the benefits will be:
- Ensuring the health and fitness of the brood bitch is not adversely affected
- Ensuring that all litters of pups have the best chance of receiving adequate nutrition for the critical stages of growth and development during pregnancy and suckling stages
- Providing an opportunity for new breeders to be educated about all aspects of the breeding process
- Preventing the ongoing breeding of brood bitches that have not produced successful offspring in their first three litters (unless there are extenuating circumstances)
- Ensuring breeders review their brood bitch’s success as a producer of racing greyhounds prior to planning their next litter
- Reducing the number of pups born that have very limited chances of ever racing
- Bringing the industry in line with other breeding Codes of Practices and Codes of Ethics
How many brood bitches over the age of eight are currently being bred with?
Industry statistics show most litters are whelped when the bitch is aged between two and six years of age. Very few brood bitches whelp litters after the age of seven.
How many brood bitches have four or more litters?
Industry statistics show most brood bitches have one to three litters in their lifetime. Only 13.5% of all bitches have a fourth litter and less than 6% have five or more litters.
When will the proposed changes be introduced?
The new rules will come into effect in Victoria on…