As pugs remain one of the most popular dog breeds in India, PETA India is erecting a series of sky-high messages across the country to inform the public that brachycephalic (flat-faced) dogs like pugs struggle to breathe and to urge everyone never to buy them. Dogs bred to have short noses and flattened faces often require surgery for serious breathing problems. The billboards are up in Bengaluru, Chennai, Delhi, Hyderabad, and Mumbai.
Pugs, popularised by Vodafone commercials, and other breathing-impaired breeds like French and English bulldogs, Pekingese, Boston terriers, boxers, Cavalier King Charles spaniels, and shih tzus suffer from a debilitating and sometimes fatal condition called brachycephalic syndrome. This can make even going for a walk, chasing a ball, running, and playing – the things that make dogs’ lives joyful and fulfilling – difficult. That’s why PETA India has urged Minister of Fisheries, Animal Husbandry and Dairying Shri Parshottam Rupala to amend the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals (Dog Breeding and Marketing) Rules, 2017, to prohibit breeding these animals.
PETA India also warns that most pet shops and breeders are illegal as they aren’t registered with state animal welfare boards. They typically deprive dogs of proper veterinary care and adequate food, exercise, affection, and opportunities for socialisation – in addition to fuelling the companion animal overpopulation crisis. PETA India encourages those with the time, patience, love, and resources to welcome a dog into their home to adopt one from an animal shelter.