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Hairless Dogs Photo Series Brings Attention To Ethical Breeding Practices

By Kimberly Yam - Source: http://www.huffingtonpost.com/

Hamster, a Chinese crested dog. Photo © Sophie Gamand

A photographer is capturing the beauty of hairless dogs to make a statement about the ethics of breeding.

France-born, New York-based photographer Sophie Gamand has always been “intrigued” by hairless canines, but told The Huffington Post in an email that their looks don’t always elicit a positive reaction from others. Gamand did some research and learned that while some hairless dogs are victims of overbreeding, others have naturally evolved that way.

Darla, a Xoloitzcuintli and Chihuahua mix. Photo © Sophie Gamand

Darla, a Xoloitzcuintli and Chihuahua mix. Photo © Sophie Gamand

So, the photographer created a photo series with the aim of showcasing the elegance of hairless dogs, while also bringing attention to the importance of responsible breeding.

“Ethical breeding is important because ethical breeders pay attention to the health of the breed,” she said.

Bodhi, a Xoloitzcuintli. Photo © Sophie Gamand

Bodhi, a Xoloitzcuintli. Photo © Sophie Gamand

To properly understand her subjects, Gamand reached out to rescue groups and ethical breeders. She says the experience opened her eyes to the serious consequences of irresponsible breeding. According to the Canadian Veterinary Journal, genetically manipulating dogs to serve human purposes can result in canines inheriting serious genetic diseases or physical traits that are detrimental to their health.

“The first layer … is the strange beauty of these dogs. Then when you dig more, you uncover the truth — that these looks were often crafted by men, or at least maintained through breeding,” Gamand told HuffPost. “Ultimately, we have a responsibility towards them and towards nature in general.”

Godfrey, a Xoloitzcuintli mix. Photo © Sophie Gamand

Godfrey, a Xoloitzcuintli mix. Photo © Sophie Gamand

See more at: http://www.huffingtonpost.com

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