The Pet Food Institute, (PFI), the Pet Industry Joint Advisory Council and the World Pet Association have announced that they will be providing funding for a research project to be conducted that will develop independent, scientifically validated animal care and welfare standards for the responsible breeding of dogs. The two-year project by Purdue University's Center for Animal Welfare Science will be led by Dr. Candace Croney, director of the center.
The goal of the research is to develop, implement as a pilot project and evaluate substantive, science-base standards for the care and welfare of dogs raised by commercial breeders. “We will have new standards of care for dog breeders by the fall, and the evaluation process will begin shortly thereafter," said Duane Ekedahl, president of PFI. "These practices will be thoroughly vetted by experts, including breeders, and refined as necessary prior to implementation.”
The first phase will be to draft comprehensive care practices for dog breeders that are based on the most up-to-date research on animal welfare science, including health, genetics, behavior and reproductive management. Once drafted, Purdue will enroll breeders in Indiana and several other Midwestern states in a pilot project to evaluate and monitor the health and well-being of animals while the new standards are followed.