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Warning over flat-faced dog trend

Thursday April 7th 2016

Researchers are warning pet lovers over the increasing trend for flat-faced dogs. They say the loveable pugs are generally unhealthy with several breeds developing severe medical problems.

Study co-author Kendy Teng says these breeds are particularly vulnerable to infection, the Telegraph reports. She also says that their skin folds often hide bacteria. Protruding eye-related problems and breathing difficulties are other issues they face.

Yet Ms Teng says these smaller dogs are increasingly in demand on a regular basis dating back 30 years. These dogs, such as French bulldogs and pugs with flat, wide snouts, are called brachycephalics.

It is thought that their popularity can be gleaned by the 7.6 million-plus Instagram posts when searching for the pug hashtag. The report authors attribute this popularity to city dwellers who have downsized their homes.

People are also increasingly looking for companionable dogs rather than work ones. Canine Genetics and Epidemiology has published the report.

Copyright Press Association 2016