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The Annual IFEZ Meeting 2017

In his capacity of current IFEZ President, Professor Dr. Kurt Kotrschal of the Eurasier Club Austria, ECA, welcomed the attendees of the individual clubs at the meeting in Stockerau near Vienna, organized by the ECA. As a special guest, he introduced Professor Dr. Heiko Scholz, President of the Kynologische Zuchtvereinigung, KZG who expressed his interest in the IFEZ work by attending the meeting.

Dr. Kotrschal briefly summarized the itinerary and went over the main points of discussion concerning the database and its possible replacement which were addressed during the year. The discussion about the future of the IFEZ was mentioned as well. Both topics should definitely be discussed in a constructive manner, not only during the meeting but also in the future.

The first part of the meeting concentrated on the application of the Eurasier Club Italiano, ECI, for associated IFEZ membership. After a brief examination of the information submitted by the ECI, confirmation of a successful data exchange by Mr. Georg Petermayer and a short discussion, the ECI was unanimously accepted as Associate Member of the IFEZ.

During the second part of the meeting many different topics pertaining to the Eurasier, the IFEZ database and the future of the IFEZ were addressed.

    • The new, amended version of the Standard 291 which was approved by the VDH (German Kennel Club) was again submitted to the FCI for approval.
    • The following health topics were addressed and discussed:
    • For the first time diagnosed in a Eurasier: A dysplasia of the ligamentum pectinatum (eye disease); Specialists of the DOK (Ophalmologists‘ Forum of Dortmund) are being consulted.
    • Lumbosacral Transitional Vertebrae are increasingly diagnosed. It cannot be determined yet if it will develop into a bigger problem in the breed although one meeting participants reported about severe difficulties in an affected dog.
    • The University of Munich Veterinary Clinic conducts a research project initiated by the KZG to determine a marker for hypothyroidism.
    • The continued propagation to spay and neuter dogs without medical indication must be limited with the help of thorough information of dog/Eurasier owners, among other things via digital media.
    • Many reasons for the partial increase of stillborn puppies were discussed. In none of the clubs there was a special tendency towards „one“ specific cause.
    • The ideas and suggestions determined by a working group that discussed the future of the IFEZ were presented. One specific point was the access of the IFEZ database with its extensive information possibilities for breeding officials.
    • The basic discussions concerning the new direction of the database showed many different possibilities, e.g., the development of a propriatory software, the adjustment of programs offered on the market or the upgrade of the current program and different access possibilities.
    • After all general regulations were addressed, the presidency was transferred from Dr. Kurt Kotrschal to Mr. Beat Kempf, President of the Eurasierfreunde Switzerland, EFS at the end of the meeting. It was a special highlight.
    • Professor Dr. Kurt Kotrschal, Chairperson of the Wolf Science Center near Vienna held a very interesting and entertaining lecture about the wolf-dog-human relationship. http://www.wolfscience.at

    The meeting was enhanced by all the personal, intensive discussions amongst the representatives of the clubs who, during the course of the year, mostly only get in touch via phone or email. It was an all in all successful and attractive meeting for the well-being of our breed with just one disappointment:

    The planned visit of the Wolf Science Center in Ernstbrunn under the supervision of Dr. Kurt Kotrschal had to be cancelled to the disappointment of all. The storm „Herwart“ reached Austria on Sunday morning and all parks in the area were closed as a precaution. Very sad but, a natural misfortune that could not be influenced.

    © Gisela Aach, IFEZ-Sekretariat; Translation: Ute Molush; Photo courtesy of Beat Kempf