Poor Little Doggies

The Expert Vet, Dr. Donna Spector
The Expert Vet, Dr. Donna Spector
The Expert Vet

I received an email from Miryam in London, England, asking Dr. Donna Spector and me to devote time on our show, The Expert Vet on the Radio Pet Lady Network (RadioPetLady.com) to discuss the horrible genetic brain malformations SM and CM, that her own little Chihuahua, Mia, is suffering from, as are many Cavalier King Charles Spaniels and their owners. Recently on the show, Dr. Donna (who is also Halo’s very own Expert Vet, too, of course!) and I discussed the nightmare of in-breeding the runts of litters, in order to produce extremely small dogs with large, round heads and big baby-like eyes — all to satisfy dog buyers’ desire for this distorted version of the breeds.

After the show aired, Miryam wrote to us:

Thank you so much for the show you did with Dr. Donna, educating your listeners on the subject of the awful brain abnormalities in many small breed dogs like my little Chihuahua, Mia. I loved the way you emphasized the ridiculous owners who want teeny dogs to carry around like a fashion accessory. Chihuahuas are dogs, not toys. My little Mia never gets carried anywhere, she loves to walk. In fact, my veterinarian is always commenting on how nice it is to see a chihuahua walking on leash and not stuck under someone’s arm, or worse still in a pretty bag. I think it’s demeaning for the dog. In my profession as a dog groomer, I rarely see a sweet-natured Chihuahua, probably because they are not properly socialized or exercised, while Mia loves everyone and everything, on two legs or four. But that’s because I’ve always treated her the same as I would any other dog, socializing her from an early age, walking her daily and of course she comes to work with me every day and meets and greets everyone with such happiness. But you covered the perils of dog breeding in today’s society very well. I hope this show makes people more aware of the unethical breeding habits that are happening everywhere and the sad, heartbreaking consequences of it. Dogs are suffering intolerable lives all due to the supply and demand of humans’ whims. Thank you once again, Tracie. Your show is fantastic: I’ve been actively promoting your show over here in England and hope to continue to get everyone listening and participating in matters close to their heart, as this subject is to me.

I hope all our friends will have a chance to listen to this show — you can find it here. Dr. Donna and I hope it may inspire you to make some different choices in how you add a small breed dog to your own life. And when you do, keep in mind that Halo makes a wonderful food just for the smallest dogs, with their little teeth and nutritional needs in mind — because good health starts with good nutrition.

–Tracie Hotchner