New campaign targets the use of Pugs, Frenchies + Bulldogs in the media

I am getting phenomenally irritated with the bandwagon use of Pugs in advertising in the UK (and elsewhere). They are absolutely everywhere this Christmas and being used to flog everything from supermarkets to laptops.

The one above from Vision Direct has got to be just about the worst, though.

Here, Vision Direct, is why you've got it wrong.

• first it's just horrible to be manipulated into thinking the Pug has fallen through the ice and drowned. This doesn't emotionally hook us - every dog lover will just hate you for you putting them through the emotional mill. 

• Pugs suffer a lot of eye problems - corneal ulcers because they bump into things because their faces are so flat (no muzzle to act as abuffer...). So sticking glasses on a Pug is pretty much taking the piss out of disability.

• This Pug has stenotic (pinched) nostrils, which impairs his breathing

• This Pug has excessive facial wrinkling and is fat - both welfare concerns.

Today, I am announcing the soft-launch of CRUFFA - The Campaign for the Responsible Use of Flat-Faced Animals (in advertising and the media) - a new lobby group born out of  concern over the increasing use of Pugs, Bulldogs, French Bulldogs and other 'brachycephalic' breeds used in advertising and the media.

While many people find flat-faced breeds cute, they suffer from health problems as a direct result of having been bred with a very short muzzle. Their current popularity - in part fuelled by the media - has led to a huge surge in the numbers being bred. It adds up to a lot of suffering.

CRUFFA does not seek to ban the use of Pugs, Bulldogs and French Bulldogs in the media; rather to educate advertisers, suggest alternatives and to promote the use of a healthier phenotype - e.g Pugs and Bulldogs that are not overweight, have good eyes, less wrinkling and wide-open nostrils.

Please join us on our Facebook page here.  You can help by posting links to ads which use brachcyephalics -and in lobbying advertisers to use more normal 'cute' dogs next time.

To come in the New Year... a website, literature and a press release formally announcing the launch.