The best of breed (BOB) basset hound winner will no longer require a vet check at Crufts as The Kennel Club (KC) has reclassified the breed.

The basset hound is the fourth breed to be reclassified from category three to category two on The Kennel Club's Breed Watch system.
The basset hound is the fourth breed to be reclassified from category three to category two on The Kennel Club’s Breed Watch system.

The club said it has moved the breed from category three (high-profile breeds) to category two of its Breed Watch system, with effect from 1 January 2017.


According to The KC, the move follows a recommendation from The KC Dog Health Group and, despite the BOB winner or those winning their third challenge certificate no longer requiring a veterinary health check at championship shows, the health of the breed will “continue to be monitored” by:

  • the basset hound breed health coordinator continuing to be required to submit a comprehensive annual breed health report each year
  • the same person being a “key” contributor to the Breed Health and Conservation Plan for Basset Hounds
  • judges continuing to submit mandatory health monitoring forms after each championship appointment

Breed health coordinator Tina Watkins said: “I am sure I can speak on behalf of basset hound owners that we are delighted with the news the breed has been reclassified from category three to category two.”


Category three breeds

Eleven breeds now remain on The KC list of category three breeds:

  • bloodhound
  • bulldog
  • chow chow
  • dogue de Bordeaux
  • German shepherd dog
  • mastiff
  • Neapolitan mastiff
  • Pekingese
  • pug
  • St Bernard
  • Shar Pei

Mrs Watkins continued: “The Basset Hound Health Group is committed to working on the health of the breed, supporting research and health education, and we are encouraged these efforts have been recognised.

“The real work begins now and I am sure this will continue with the dedication developed within the breed to progress.”

The KC secretary, Caroline Kisko, said: “We would like to commend the dedication, passion and commitment of those basset hound owners and exhibitors who have participated in the Basset Hound Health Scheme and other health testing.

“The breed clubs and their health group have worked hard to ensure their community has been involved in all health initiatives undertaken by the breed. The KC will continue to work closely with breed representatives, and offer support and advice, with ongoing health and welfare initiatives.”

Continued effort

The KC said the reclassification will be reviewed in 12 months’ time.

The basset hound is the fourth breed to be reclassified from category three to category two on Breed Watch and the most recent after the reclassification of the clumber spaniel in 2014.

More information on basset hound health and welfare initiatives can be found on the Basset Hound Health Group website.

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