Please try to ignore the Sensationalist title.Pedigree Dogs Exposed claims that some pedigree dogs are so inbred that they're suffering from genetic diseases and health problems that can cause them pain and discomfort, and the number of these genetic problems is increasing at a frightening pace.
Basically, the genetic and mutation-based deformities are being increased at an exponential rate due to mother-son and sibling breeding for nothing other than cosmetic purposes.
No one is hitting the dogs with a stick, they are highly pampered, but the breeding program leaves them with such things as dysplasia, crippling arthritis, epilepsy, etc; frankly, these diseases hurt perhaps as much as being beaten with a stick.
The Kennel owners are claiming the genetic science is faulty and there is nothing wrong with the dogs. But others are claiming this is widespread, unchecked animal cruelty.
Just to give you an idea of the cosmetic changes:
I think the physical problems with breathing and movement are obvious.
Just as a side note, I own a CKC registered Newfoundlander, pure black class. But she wasn't showable due to some Landseer popping up (slightly droopier eyes and about 2 dozen white hairs sprinkled throughout her coat). When we bought her, we had to sign an agreement that we would never breed her. No problem, I just wanted pet.
Now out vet says she is the perfect, healthy specimen of a Newfie. Good hips, strong legs, her back isn't disproportionately long. The breeders have just ensured good healthy stock has been removed from their pool. Just for an example, as the Newfies aren't in nearly as much trouble as some other breeds.
The documentary last night claims that the show pool for pugs in Britain is so shallow that despite 5000 show dogs, genetically it's as though there is only 50 which should place them on the endangered species list.
And to be fair to the other side, the British KC have issued new standards which should help eventually - if it isn't too late. Check for your dog here.
Should inbreeding be considered animal cruelty?