Long face sad fate of breed­ing

The West Australian - - WORLD -

Vet­eri­nar­i­ans fear the trend for breed­ing do­mes­tic an­i­mals to fit hu­man ideas of what is at­trac­tive, even if it dam­ages their health, has spread to horses, as im­ages emerged of a “car­toon­like” colt bred with fea­tures like a Dis­ney char­ac­ter.

Ex­treme breed­ing prac­tices have left an­i­mals such as French pugs strug­gling to breathe.

Or­rion Farms in Wash­ing­ton, US, has an Ara­bian colt for sale with ex­ces­sively wide nos­trils, big eyes and a flat­tened nose, like the char­ac­ter Buck from Dis­ney’s Home on the Range.

The farm boasted the horse was a step to­wards per­fec­tion.

Tim Greet, a horse spe­cial­ist in New­mar­ket, Eng­land, said Ara­bi­ans were known for their “dished” fea­tures, but the mod­i­fi­ca­tions had been taken “to a ridicu­lous level”.

The de­for­mity could be even worse for a horse than a dog.

“Dogs can mouth-breathe. Horses only breathe through their nose,” he said. “Ex­er­cise would def­i­nitely be lim­ited for this horse.”

US vets who claim to have ex­am­ined the colt say it has no res­pi­ra­tory is­sues.

El Rey Mag­num, a young Ara­bian horse with a dras­tic con­cave pro­file.

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