AKC Board Meeting Minutes
July 11th-12th, 2016 - published by AKC 7/21/16
To search for specific subject, person, or word in the American Kennel Club minutes, use "find" command. Wording is exactly as presented in the Minutes provided by American Kennel Club Secretary James Crowley, with addition of bolded subject text.
The Board convened on Monday July 11, 2016 at 8:03 a.m. All Directors were present, as were the Executive Secretary, the Assistant Executive Secretary, the Senior Executive Vice President and General Counsel, as well as the Executive Vice President and Chief Growth Officer. The May 2016 Board minutes, copies of which were made available to all Directors, were discussed. Upon a motion by Mr. Arnold, seconded by Dr. Battaglia, the May 2016 minutes were unanimously approved.
EXECUTIVE SESSION - There was an Executive Session to discuss sensitive business matters.
PRESIDENT’S REPORT Board Action Items -Status Report - Mr. Sprung reviewed Action Items, and reported on staff initiatives.
Action by the China Kennel Union - The Board discussed the policy adopted by the China Kennel Union (CKU), an FCI member club, suspending and cancelling the registrations of any registrant with CKU or participant in CKU activities who participate in any activity organized by AKC, including events held in the United States. This will be discussed further.
FIDO TV - Tad Walden, the CEO of FIDO TV, gave the Board an update. He outlined the platforms for FIDO, which is television, web and mobile. Current providers include: DISH TV, Google Fiber, Century AT&T, and Link Prism. FIDO is currently in negotiations to add such providers as Verizon Fios, Direct TV, Charter, and has already added Amazon Prime (a $3.99 monthly subscription fee). Mr. Walden reported on the various negotiations in progress with content carriers (including Comcast, Direct TV, Charter, Cox and others), it is his belief that by this fall 2016, Fido TV will have turned a corner in generating revenues. Current programing plans include shows on:
• The Breed For You
• Training Rescue Dogs
• Pick a Puppy
• Bark Tank (a contest related to dog products)
• Wolf Daddy
• Dogs of the Secret Service
• Dog’s Best Friend
• Best of Dog Videos
Legal Status Report - Ms. McManus, Deputy General Counsel, presented a status report on pending litigation and other Legal activities for the months of May and June 2016.
Arbitration and Mediation Program - The Board has asked for an arbitration procedure that could address disputes the AKC encounters in all sectors, whether AKC is a party to the dispute or not. The full range of such disputes is extensive and, in most cases, the parties have not sought AKC assistance. At the July 7-8, 2003 AKC Board meeting, the Board voted to insert specific mandatory arbitration language in all official AKC entry forms and the registration applications. The Board subsequently allowed clubs to opt-out of arbitration in its premium lists. The Board discussed the various options proposed by staff to address other disputes. Staff explained that it always wants AKC to be out front in helping clubs and club members to resolve their non-AKC disputes, i.e., disputes in which AKC is not a direct party and do not involve AKC disciplinary matters. In this connection, staff recommended an option that would address specifically two types of non-AKC disputes --(i) internal arguments over club bylaw provisions, parliamentary and policy matters; and (ii) private arguments over ownership - because these are the only non-AKC disputes that occasionally are raised with AKC staff. Following a motion by Mr. Feeney, seconded by Mr. Gladstone, it was VOTED (unanimously) to adopt the following staff recommendations with an implementation date to be determined when staff has finalized the details:
AKC Informal Steps, Followed by CPR Institute's Dog Dispute Specific Med-Arb Processes.
As an initial step, AKC staff should continue its efforts to resolve informally these two categories of non-AKC disputes --(i) internal arguments over club bylaw provisions, parliamentary and policy matters; and
(ii) private arguments over ownership. For those (difficult) disputes that remain unresolved, AKC should offer and encourage post-dispute (voluntary) binding arbitration (and non-binding mediation preceding arbitration) through an outside, expert provider of neutral dispute resolution services. The post-dispute mediation and arbitration processes should be tailored to club and dog-related disputes and not be administered through costly, generic processes available through the American Arbitration Association.
The General Counsel has had considerable experience (over 40 years) in the field of Alternative Dispute Resolution (including mediation, arbitration and other forms of private resolution processes outside of court) (“ADR”) and sits on the Board of Directors of the International Institute for Conflict Prevention and Resolution (“CPR Institute”) that is headquartered in New York City (30 East 33rd Street; www.cpradr.org). CPR Institute is an independent, nonprofit ADR provider offering innovative, practical arbitration, mediation and other dispute resolution processes as well as the services of neutrals. CPR Institute has the advantages of flexibility and cost and has offered to administer a voluntary mediation and arbitration program that is tailored to the needs of the AKC community. CPR is willing to help design and administer processes that would meet AKC’s specific needs.
A voluntary mediation and arbitration program that is tailored to club-and dog-related disputes will be beneficial to all parties. Having a prestigious third-party provider administer such a program, among others things, would enhance the credibility of the program, especially if the party disappointed with the result should decide to second-guess the process. Moreover, as a consequence of AKC’s earlier efforts to resolve these disputes, AKC staff should not formally arbitrate these disputes because that alternative may give the appearance of a conflict that should be avoided --in other words, the AKC staff may not be seen as being a perfectly neutral arbitor of the same dispute once one party believes that AKC staff has been positioned by the other party to informally advise on or resolve that dispute (and regardless of what AKC staff has or has not actually done).
The AKC-designed program the Board is adopting would operate, in broad scope, as follows:
• If informal attempts to resolve either club or registration matters fail within the AKC, the parties would be advised of AKC’s reliance upon the CPR Institute and the ability of the parties to mediate or arbitrate their dispute through the CPR Institute’s dog-related procedures.
• The AKC would provide a link from its website to CPR so visitors to our site could go directly to CPR without previously contacting AKC. CPR would set aside a dedicated page for dog-related disputes, as well; and we would work with CPR to design that dedicated page, including its name.
• AKC would create a simplified set of procedures for expedited mediation and arbitration parallel to CPR’s currently published Fast Track Rules. These procedures would be administered by CPR.
• The mediators and arbitrators would be the AKC Trial Board Chairs as well as former employees of AKC’s Legal department, (and possibly others who are qualified) if they agree. Over time, other former AKC employees of stature and experience could be added.
The benefits of CPR’s administration of the mediation or arbitration program, by contrast to the possibility of going to a three-person Trial Board or the more cumbersome AAA, would be as follows:
• the ability to have mediators and arbitrators with backgrounds in the sport and with AKC;
• the lower cost to the AKC-related user;
• the flexibility that CPR has shown in offering to administer a system we will jointly design;
• maintaining the impartiality of a program administered by a truly neutral and accomplished third-party provider;
• CPR’s standing and experience in administering arbitrations;
• the deference courts would give to the outcome of a mediation or arbitration administered by an experienced, neutral third-party organization; and
• the lower cost to the participants, versus AAA.
The programs, once implemented, would be purely voluntary. Although AKC would undertake the initial cost of establishing the program with CPR, the parties themselves would split the cost of the mediator or arbitrator and for CPR’s administration of the individual case.
AKC should not attempt to compel mediation or arbitration of the larger variety of disputes in which the AKC is not a party ( i.e., the types of disputes summarized under the heading of “Broad Categories of Dog-Related Disputes to Which AKC is Not a Party” in the memo presented by staff). Court challenges are a distinct possibility, if not inevitable, inasmuch as the AKC is not a direct party to these disputes. Moreover, there has been little, if any, regular interest in having AKC intervene (especially by contrast to garden-variety disputes over internal club and dog ownership matters).
AKC should monitor further the subject of whether there are other dog-related disputes for which mediation and arbitration would be advisable and enforceable. In addition, Legal should assess any experience under the AKC’s CPR Institute program. Legal will report back to the Board after a year of experience following implementation.
AKC will update and reissue its eight-year old pamphlet entitled, “Working It Out – AKC Guidelines for Resolving Dog Club Issues,” after implementation of the new CPR program. The revised pamphlet should recommend the mediation and arbitration of co-ownership disputes, as well.
Board Tracking Report - The Board reviewed a tracking report of high impact staff projects that have been Board approved.
FINANCE - Joseph Baffuto, CFO, presented unaudited financial results through the six-month period ending June 30, 2016. Total revenues for the period were $32.4 million, which represented a 4.2% increase over budget and 7.5% greater than the previous year. Registration-related revenues along with Royalties & Sponsorship represent the largest revenue areas of positive performance through the first half of the fiscal year. Total operating expenses of $28.9 million were 5.6% below budget, but 10.9% above the preceding year’s expenses. Operating income as of June 30, 2016 was $3.4 million which was favorable compared to the budget for the period, but slightly below the prior year.
AKC CANINE HEALTH FOUNDATION - Mr. Sprung brought up a request from the AKC Canine Health Foundation to address the terms of the current MOU, item 12 (“The AKC contribution shall be used exclusively for grants except that an annual, mutually agreed portion of the contribution may be used for grant administration expense”) on the 2016 AKC contribution. Following a motion by Mr. Ashby, seconded by Mr. Feeney, it was VOTED (unanimously) to permit the AKC Canine Health Foundation to allocate 5% of AKC’s 2016 new/lapsed donor match donation to grant administrative costs rather than to grants.
PUBLIC EDUCATION - Brandi Hunter, Vice President Public Relations, and Davis Alexis, Public Education Administrator, participated in this portion of the meeting. There was an update on a number of new programs, including:
• Kid’s Corner
• Vet’s Corner
• The donation of books to school libraries
• The Girl Scout patch program
• The development of dog-related lesson plans for teachers
• An AKC online video library
There have also been enhancements to existing programs, including:
• A better organization of available printed publications for download
• A separate listing for available Spanish language publications• Updating the Canine Ambassador Program
• Meet the Breeds
BUSINESS UPDATE - Alexandra Aleskovsky, Executive Vice President and Chief Growth Officer gave the Board an update. Revenues for the first six months of 2016 compared to the same period in 2015 are up by 10.8%. Web traffic is up by 65% as compared to 2015 and Marketplace sessions are up by 67% year over year.
Registration - Year to Date litter registrations are up 7% and dog registrations are up 9% over 2015. Pedigree revenues are 10% higher than in 2015. This continued upward trend suggests we may be at a tipping point for purebred dogs returning as the dog of choice for family companions and a demonstration that many of our initiatives are having a positive impact on achieving our mission.
Marketing: For Marketplace, litter opt-ins increased to 12% for June and 2016 revenue is up by 44% compared to 2015. AKC’s E-newsletters achieved the highest ever open rate and click thru rate of 43% and 22% for June. AKC has been continuously expanding its reach. Total Social followers are up 22% to 3.7MM from 2015. A video on fruits and vegetables that are healthy for dogs reached over 9 million people. AKC did a Facebook interactive live stream with a veterinarian on summer safety tips and additional live stream concepts are being developed. The success and continued growth of our social media efforts is extending our brand and thus awareness of The American Kennel Club to an entire new group of followers.
AKC.ORG - AKC has engaged Com Score, a leader in measuring digital audiences, to assist in measuring the penetration of AKC.org and to use this data to both inform our akc.org development efforts and to provide the value proposition advertisers are looking for when they make ad placement decisions on akc.org. Currently AKC.ORG is currently ranked #3 among dog sites and #8 among all pet sites. And, most importantly, AKC.org ranks #1 in engagement metrics.
E-commerce - The AKC Store has expanded to include additional grooming, accessories, and jewelry products. E-Commerce revenue for 2016 is up by 93% for the same period in 2015. By offering a well curated selection of products the intent is to continue to grow this important part of our revenue streams.
Business Development - A number of corporate sponsorships have been expanded and additional opportunities are being evaluated. AKC Pet Care LLC is moving forward on schedule with architectural and engineering plans completed and selection of General Contractor in-progress.
Technology Services - Critical hires and projects to facilitate strategic cloud migration are underway. A Business Intelligence project with the goal of enhancing and personalizing relationships with our growing customer base by developing full view of the customer and is under development.
TECHNOLOGY UPDATE - Aiden Colie, Senior Vice President, Technology, gave the Board an update.
Goals - The goals of the AKC Technology Services are:
• Build a team and create processes that support the AKC vision
• Develop a business environment which supports career and technical growth of staff
• Transform AKC technologies to provide more business value.
Mr. Colie comes to AKC with a track record of reducing the costs of technology services while at the same time expanding their impact on the business in a way that improves overall business performance. Significant cost avoidance has already been achieved. There is a focus also on minimizing risk to ongoing business operations. The Board was pleased with the direction and asked for periodic updates on progress.
Real Estate Report - Representatives of CBRE, the Gensler Architect Company, and Aequitas were present for this portion of the meeting which was conducted in EXECUTIVE SESSION.
Nominating Committee - The Executive Secretary informed the Board that the Nominating Committee for the March 2017 election of AKC Directors must be appointed by August 15, and its report must be received no later than October 15, 2016. Following discussion, the Board elected the Nominating Committee, which is to select candidates for positions on the Board of Directors, Class of 2021, which are to be filled at the March, 2017 Delegate Meeting: Nominating Committee: Patti L. Strand, Chair Robert Amen Karen Burgess John Lyons William B. Tabler, Jr., Alternates: James Efron, Betty M. Winthers
Dachshund Proposed Breed Standard Revision - The Dachshund Club of America (DCA) submitted the proposed revisions to the Color and Disqualifications sections of the Smooth Dachshund breed standard. The current standard was approved by the AKC Board January 9, 2007. Following a motion by Mr. Dok, seconded by Mr. Menaker, the Board VOTED (unanimously) to publish these revisions on the Secretary’s Page for comment, in accordance with the procedures for a breed standard revision.
German Shorthaired Pointer Proposed Breed Standard Revision - The Secretary of the German Shorthaired Pointer Club of America, Inc (GSPCA), received a petition on May 17, 2016 signed by 198 members of the club, which requests a change in the breed standard to include the color black as an allowed color and that a black dog would have black nose pigment. This petition meets the GSPCA bylaw requirement that amendments to the Breed Conformation Standard may be proposed by the Board of Directors or by written petition addressed to the Recording Secretary signed by ten percent (10%) of the membership in good standing. Following a motion by Dr. Davies, seconded by Mr. Menaker, the Board VOTED unanimously to allow the GSPCA to proceed to ballot the membership on the proposed standard revisions to the Head, Color, and Disqualifications sections of the breed standard.
Lagotto Romagnolo Club of America - Application for Member Status - The Board reviewed the application for Membership status which was submitted by the Lagotto Romagnolo Club of America. The member club application has been published in two issues of the AKC Gazette. Following a motion by Mr. Wooding, seconded by Ms. Cruz, the Board VOTED (affirmative: Mr. Wooding, Ms. Cruz, Ms. McAteer, Dr. Davies, Dr. Battaglia, Mr. Gladstone, Mr. Feeney, Mr. Dok, Mr. Ashby, Mr. Menaker, Mr. Arnold, Mr. Kalter; opposed: Dr. Garvin) to deny approval of the application for Member Club status at this time. The Lagotto Romagnolo Club of America must first, hold a proper election in accordance with the club’s bylaws, which shall be reported to AKC. The Board would then reconsider the membership application.
Canine Legislation Position Statement on Pet Choice - The Board reviewed a memo which provided recommendations for a new canine legislation position statement on “Pet Choice” stating AKC support for individual freedom of choice in selecting a pet, and opposition to legislation that seeks to ban the sale of pets from USDA-compliant licensed professional breeders at retail pet shops. This position statement is important because it provides a foundation for AKC GR to advocate clearly and strongly for responsible pet choice regardless of where the prospective pet owner chooses to obtain a pet (including breeders, retailers, responsible rescues or other sources). The underlying position is important because it demonstrates AKC’s commitment to protecting the future of purebred dogs as small breeders continue to come under regulatory pressure. This will be discussed further at the August meeting.
Proposed Bylaw Amendment (Parent Club Membership) - The Board reviewed a proposed amendment to ARTICLE IV – MEMBERSHIP, Sections 1 and 7, of the Charter and Bylaws of The American Kennel Club which was submitted by the Catoctin Kennel Club which intends to facilitate the election of Parent Clubs to membership. The amendment would add wording such that concurrent with breed recognition by the AKC Board of Directors, that breed’s parent Specialty Club shall become a member club, subject only to the requirements of ARTICLE IV, Sections 2 and 3. It would also require that when a Parent Club is not approved for membership by the Board, a reason would need to be given and provides an appeal process to Parent Clubs only. This will be discussed further at the August meeting.
New Breed for Foundation Stock Service® - Braque Francais Pyrenean - The Board was advised that the Staff Foundation Stock Service (FSS) Committee recently approved a petition for the Braque Francais Pyrenean to be accepted into the FSS program.
New Breed for Foundation Stock Service® - Pudelpointer - The Board was advised that the Staff Foundation Stock Service (FSS) Committee recently approved a petition for the Pudelpointer to be accepted into the FSS program.
Parent Club Designation for Russian Toy - The Board was advised that the Russian Toy Club of America has submitted a request to be designated as the Parent Club for the breed, allowing them to hold Open Shows. The Russian Toy Club of America has an active membership participating in Companion Events and FSS Open Shows when available. The club provides regular updates on club activities and Board Meetings. In March of 2013, the AKC Board was presented with a request to select a Parent Club for the Breed between the Russian Toy Club of America and the Russian Toy Dog Club of America. There was no objection and the Russian Toy Club of America shall be designated as the Parent Club representing the Russian Toy with the AKC.
COMPANION & PERFORMANCE
Formation of Rally Clubs - The Board reviewed a recommendation to amend the current Rally regulations to allow for the accreditation of clubs formed for the purpose of holding Rally trials. Given that Rally is now a stand-alone sport, it should be clearly stated in the regulations that AKC is welcoming of new clubs if their desire is to hold Rally trials. This action is part of the larger Sports and Events initiative to make it easier for clubs to join the AKC and hold AKC events. Staff was to determine the impact this would have on existing Obedience Clubs, which also hold Rally events and to report back to the Board.
Formation of Coursing Ability Clubs - The Board reviewed a recommendation to allow for the accreditation of clubs formed for the purpose of holding licensed Coursing Ability Test (CAT) events. The current CAT Regulations do not specifically state that AKC will accredit clubs that are solely formed to hold CAT events. All CAT events are currently held by clubs formed primarily for another purpose. The sport has grown to the point to justify the formation of CAT clubs. This will be discussed with the Delegate All-Breed Club and Herding, Earthdog, and Coursing Events Committees.
Poodles Eligible to Participate in the Spaniel Hunting Tests - The Board reviewed a recommendation to permit miniature and standard size Poodles to be eligible to enter the Spaniel Hunting Test program. Titles earned in Spaniel Hunting Tests will be designated with a “U” to differentiate the title from those earned in Retriever Hunting Tests (example: JHU). Poodle clubs with documented experience in upland hunting activities can apply to become licensed to hold Spaniel Hunting Tests for tests held after the effective date of this recommendation. This will be discussed further at the August meeting. If approved the recommendation would become effective with the Spaniel Hunting Test held in conjunction with the PCA National Specialty in April 2017.
Agility - Participant Comments - The Board reviewed a document that shared Agility participants’ opinions about the different organizations that offer agility competitions including AKC.
JUDGING OPERATIONS - Doug Ljungren, Vice President Sports and Events, participated in this portion of the meeting. Tim Thomas, Director Dog Show Judges, and Leslie Fetzer, Education Project Manager, participated by video conference.
The Grading of Online Breed Standard Examinations - The Board reviewed a staff proposal to modify the criteria used to determine the requirement to pass the open book breed standard request. The tests have already been modified to remove all leading “none of the above” or “all of the above” answers. Following a motion by Dr. Battaglia, seconded by Mr. Kalter, the revised recommendation below was VOTED (unanimously; absent: Mr. Feeney). Following a motion by Dr. Garvin, seconded by Mr. Gladstone, it was VOTED (unanimously to keep it as two missed questions being considered a failure.
RECOMMENDATION - As a result of this review, Staff is requesting the Judges Review Committee endorse the following recommendation to revise the section related to Breed examinations included current Judging Approval Process (page 6 of 13) to the following. Effective date of the revision is to coincide with the launch of the AKC Canine College.
Breed Examinations - Currently
reads: Successful completion of an open book breed examination shall be
required of each applicant for each breed for which Permit status is requested
or for which group approval is requested without breed approval. An application
fee of $25 per breed shall be required of each application. In the event that
Permit status for a breed is not granted, any fee paid shall be a credit for any
future breed application.
Two or more missed questions or missing
one DQ question is considered failing an exam. The judge will be advised to
retake the breed exam. If the exam is not passed on the second attempt it will
result in the denial of the breed application for six months. Judges may apply
for approval of affected breed(s) after six months and a realistic effort to
The examination and applicable fee shall be completed online in AKC’s Canine College as required with each application for each breed or Group. Link to AKC Canine College: http://www.caninecollege.akc.org. Breed exams not yet available in the Canine College are available on the AKC website or upon request from Judging Operations.
Two or more missed questions or missing
one DQ question is considered failing an exam. The judge will be advised to
retake the breed exam. If the exam is not passed on the second attempt it will
result in the denial of the breed application for six months. Judges may apply
for approval of affected breed(s) after six months and a realistic effort to
Rules, Policies & Guidelines for Conformation Dog Show Judges - The Rules, Policies and Guidelines for Conformation Dog Show Judges is a handbook for all judges and aspiring judges that summarizes Rules, Policies and Guidelines as they relate to procedure and conduct. The Judging Operations Department reviewed the current booklet and is recommending modifications to provide greater clarity as far as AKC’s expectations of its judges in the areas of procedure and conduct and to be consistent with current policy. The Board reviewed the memorandum which contained recommended revisions to specific sections of the Rules, Policies and Guidelines for Conformation Dog Show Judges. This will be discussed further at the August meeting.
Conformation Judging Statistics - The Board reviewed statistics related to conformation judging applications considered by the Judges Review Committee in the previous three months. They were presented with the list of New Breed (NB) and Additional Breed applicants presented for final approval during the months of April -June, 2016.
2016 YEAR TO DATE APPROVAL STATISTICS - Statistics for New Breed and Additional Breed applicants through the 2nd quarter of 2016 (January – June).
FINAL REVIEW ACTION SUMMARY
FINAL REVIEW ACTION SUMMARY 2016
ADDITIONAL BREED JUDGING APPLICANTS
FINAL REVIEW ACTION SUMMARY
2016 YEAR TO DATE
CONFORMATION - Doug Ljungren, Vice President Sports and Events, Mari-Beth O’Neill, Vice President Sport Services, Glenn Lycan, Director Operation Support, Alan Slay, Director Event Programs, and Bri Tesarz, Manager Dog Show Rules, participated in this portion of the meeting via teleconference.
Reinstatement Procedures - There was a discussion on procedures for the reinstatement of a dog disqualified for attacking. At the June 2016 Delegate Meeting, it was reported that the following steps have been taken:
• AKC took out an accident insurance policy to cover all judges at AKC events.
• Criteria was established for proof of insurance by the owner of the dog being considered for reinstatement
• A disqualified dog must immediately leave the grounds. The same is true for a reinstatement examination
• A club will be notified two weeks in advance of a reinstatement procedure at is show, and the club may agree or disagree to it.
The Board considered a requirement that a DNA swab be taken of any dog disqualified for attacking at a show. The dog would also be DNA swabbed at the time of the reinstatement procedure. The fee for reinstatement would be raised to $500 to cover all costs of the reinstatement procedure. This will be discussed further at a future meeting.
Non-Regular Classes - The Board considered a proposal to permit spayed bitches and neutered dogs to compete in all Non-Regular Classes for single dog entries at independent Specialty Shows. The proposal had been discussed at the Delegate Parent Clubs Committee in June and Board input was being sought. Currently, spayed bitches and neutered dogs may only compete in the Veterans Class and as the Stud Dog or Brood Bitch in the Stud Dog or Brood Bitch Classes. Extending this to other Non-Regular Classes would thus entail a rule change. Staff was directed to explore the idea and to report back to the Board. Government Relations was to be consulted to determine what if any impact this might have on our legislative position on mandatory spay/neuter.
All-Breed Show Judging Procedures - Staff was directed to look into developing a proposal to address the perception that current scheduling in judging programs results in unnecessary delays in judging and in events ending unnecessarily late. This will be discussed further at a future meeting.
Closing Date for Conformation Entries - Following a motion by Dr. Garvin, seconded by Mr. Gladstone, the Board VOTED (unanimously; absent Mr. Feeney) to amend Rules Applying to Dog Shows Chapter 6, Section 9 – Premium Lists and Closing of Entries, to change the time of closing for entries to “no later than 11:59PM”. The Board discussed the fact that entries received past the current closing time were few and the ability to provide more flexibility was important to our Club’s exhibitors (customers). In addition, it was noted this will have a positive impact on the sport by adjusting the closing time to benefit the trend in entries towards electronic submission. This rule change will be read at the September Delegates meeting and voted at the December Delegates meeting. If approved, it will become effective on January 1, 2017.
Limited Number of Events Policy - In May 2016, the Board approved an addition to the Limited Number of Events Policy to include optional criteria of road mileage between show sites. In order to balance with the existing policy of 75 straight-line miles between territories the optional criteria for isolated status would be 100 driving miles between show sites. Following the May meeting a request was made to further reduce the driving mileage between show sites to 75 miles. This change will provide additional clubs the opportunity to apply for isolated status. In an analysis of potential shows sites it was determined that 47 sites/clubs may be allowed to hold additional shows at their show sites by decreasing the driving mile threshold to 75. (This includes 21 clubs currently considered isolated in the continental US). When compared to the 100 mile driving distance this is an increase from 9 additional potential isolated sites to 26 additional potential isolated sites (in addition to the clubs determined isolated, based on 75 straight-line miles between territories). Following a motion by Mr. Gladstone, seconded by Mr. Dok, it was VOTED (affirmative: Mr. Gladstone, Mr. Dok, Ms. Cruz, Mr. Wooding, Ms. McAteer, Mr. Menaker, Mr. Kalter, Mr. Arnold, Mr. Ashby, Dr. Battaglia, Dr. Davies, opposed Dr. Garvin; absent: Mr. Feeney) to further reduce the 100 driving mile option to 75 miles, the updated policy follows:
Limited Number of Events Policy (April 2009 Board meeting. Amended March 2015 Board meeting, Amended July 2016 Board meeting) A local all-breed or limited-breed club has the option to hold two shows in a calendar year. Local specialty clubs have the option to hold shows on two days per year. Local specialty clubs holding two days of shows per year have the option to hold one additional show in conjunction w ith their breed’s national specialty. There is no limit on national clubs. All-breed clubs in Alaska, Hawaii, Puerto Rico, and geographically isolated clubs and or show sites have the option to hold up to four shows. Show or obedience clubs have the option to hold any number of obedience trials.
Geographically isolated clubs are determined by: no AKC club within 75 straight-line miles between territories unless the clubs show site is greater than 75 driving miles from the nearest show site. Google maps will be used to consider the show site to show site option.
AKC NOHS Program Enhancements - The AKC National Owner-Handled Series (NOHS) continues to gain popularity with exhibitors, resulting in an increasing number of clubs offering the NOHS at their events. Based on feedback from participants and Executive Field Representatives (EFR), staff recommends the following changes to be effective January 1, 2017:
1. Convert the NOHS Policies & Best Practices into NOHS Regulations. By converting the policies and best practices into regulations, there will be more consistency in how clubs administer the NOHS.
2. Add more structure to the NOHS judging panel requirements. Staff is recommending the following changes to the NOHS judging panel requirements which will be programmatically enforced:
• Require a different judge to be assigned to the same NOHS group for each day of a weekend/cluster/circuit (approved by the Board at the April 2016 meeting).
• Require a different judge be assigned to the regular and NOHS group/BIS at an event.
• Judges will not be approved to judge a breed, the NOHS Variety Group of which the breed is a part and NOHS Best in Show at the same show.
The Board also felt that there should be a limit on the number of NOHS groups that a judge could do at a show and staff was asked to include a proposal on this matter in August. This will be discussed further at the August meeting.
Conformation Junior Showmanship, Canine Partner - The Board reviewed a staff recommendation that proposes to increase the participation in the current AKC National Junior Organization by allowing Juniors with AKC Canine Partners listed dogs to compete in Conformation Junior Showmanship. The implementation of allowing Juniors to handle an AKC Canine Partners-listed dogs will bring new young people, enhanced our ability to work with 4H Clubs as well as their families into the AKC, which will support the future of clubs and events. If this were adopted the Junior would disclose to the Judge which purebred dog they associate with their dog and it would be presented to the judge as that breed. If approved, this would become effective January 1, 2017. This will be discussed further at the August meeting.
Junior Showmanship Regulations Minimum Age - The Board reviewed a Staff recommendation to revise the Regulations for Junior Showmanship, Section 5, to reduce the minimum age to 8-years old. Additionally, Staff recommends the approval of a revision to the Junior Showmanship Judging Guidelines, Section 6, Judging Routine, to state that, at the judge’s discretion, a ramp may be used instead of a table for all dogs normally judged on a table. If adopted the PeeWee special attraction would end at seven years of age. This will be discussed further at the August meeting.
Growth Strategy for the AKC National Junior Organization - The Sport Services Staff proposes to increase the participation in the current AKC National Junior Organization by researching a number of new initiatives and launching those that will have the most positive impact. Some of these initiatives are:
1. Survey current Junior participants to gain additional knowledge about current participants.
2. Reduce minimum age of participants in Junior Showmanship to 8.
3. Allow Juniors to handle a Canine Partner in Conformation Junior Showmanship.
4. Research current camps for youth and dogs, which will result in a program.
5. Research and develop a Team Competition for Juniors.
6. Create a new program to maintain the involvement of the 18–25-year-old age group, which may include reinstituting the intern program.
7. Develop outreach to families that have participated in the Pee Wee Competition
8. Extend outreach to other youth organizations or activities to introduce information about AKC Events and incorporate AKC programs into their programs.
9. Develop new educational materials for all age groups for use by youth organizations.
This will be discussed further at the August meeting
Two All-Breed Shows Spread Over Two Days - The Board asked Event Operations staff to look into the possibility of a club(s) holding two shows over two days with the format being the same four groups for both shows the first day, and the remaining three groups and Best in Show for both shows the second day. This option is allowed under the current rules and could provide a benefit to both exhibitors and clubs. Exhibitors would be able to shorten their show weekend and thereby reduce their costs. With fewer unique dogs participating on each show day, this option would position clubs to explore the use of smaller, less-expensive venues for their show. Staff will notify clubs that this option is available for them and ask them to contact AKC if they are interested in holding shows in this format.
COMPLIANCE - Revised AKC Disciplinary Guidelines - Following a motion by Dr. Battaglia, seconded by Mr. Arnold the Board VOTED unanimously (absent: Mr. Feeney, Mr. Gladstone) to approve the staff recommended revisions to the Disciplinary Guidelines. (Attachment A) The AKC Discipline Guidelines are set by the Board of Directors pursuant to Article XV, Section 3 of The AKC Disciplinary Guidelines, which have been in effect since 1992. The Revised AKC Disciplinary Guidelines are effective July 12, 2016.
Article XII Complaints - The Board reviewed a Staff recommendation to better define the process for receiving and reviewing Article XII complaints. Complaints which allege conduct prejudicial to the best interests of purebred dogs, purebred dog events or The American Kennel Club are filed pursuant to Article XII, Section 1 of the Charter and Bylaws of the American Kennel Club. Such complaints must be signed and sworn and accompanied by a deposit, the amount to be established annually by AKC’s Board of Directors (see Filing Fee Increase memo). The Board determines whether AKC shall entertain jurisdiction. The desire is to set a policy to allow these Charter and Bylaw Complaints to be handled in a more consistent and efficient manner. Staff recommends the following policy be adopted:
The AKC Board of Directors will review Charter and Bylaw Complaints that are submitted with the following information and in the following form:
1) Short complete description of the steps the complainant has taken to resolve the matter. If a club matter, an affirmation that the complainant has read and taken the steps set forth in the brochure Working it Out-AKC Guidelines for Resolving Dog Club Issues; 2) A concise statement of the facts; 3) A concise statement of how the facts alleged are conduct prejudicial to the best interests of purebred dogs, purebred dog events or the AKC; 4) The entire complaint should not exceed ten pages in length and be at least in 9 font size, with 1 inch margins; 5) Must be sworn to before a notary; and 6) A deposit in the amount of $500 must be submitted with the complaint.
Complaints submitted without all this information and in this form will not be presented to the AKC Board of Directors until the complainant has met these criteria. The Director of Compliance will review each complaint submitted and within ten (10) business days of submission and will provide the complainant(s) with a notice that either the above criteria have been met or a detailed response as to what is missing or if matters need to be clarified will ask for the additional information. Staff also recommends that the AKC Board of Directors establish a policy regarding matters that would not generally be considered conduct prejudicial to the best interests of purebred dogs, purebred dog events, or the AKC: The AKC Board of Directors generally does not consider the following to be conduct prejudicial to the best interests of purebred dogs, purebred dog events, or the AKC:
1) Differing personalities; politics; philosophies in running or operating clubs; 2) The application of parliamentary principles, parliamentary authority or procedure; or interpretations of bylaws supported by the opinion of a Parliamentarian who is a member of The National Association of Parliamentarians and adopted by the club’s Board of Directors.
This will be discussed further in August.
Dogue de Bordeaux Society of America - At its May meeting the Board directed that the Dogue de Bordeaux Society of America (DdBSA) be advised that unless an agreement was reached between the parties or arbitration agreed to by July 1, 2016 and The AKC notified by July 6, 2016, the Board would revoke the DdBSA’s status as the AKC Parent Club. Both parties in this dispute have agreed to arbitration.
CLUBS - A written report was provided on requests for AKC Membership (to be published in the July and August AKC Gazette: Hendersonville Kennel Club
A written report was provided on Member Club Bylaws approved in May and June: American Pomeranian Club (1900) • Dalmatian Club of America (1905) • Dayton Dog Training Club, Dayton, OH (1972) • Greenville Kennel Club, Greenville County, SC (1950) • Leonberger Club of America (2012) • Providence County Kennel Club, Providence County, RI (1919) • Santa Ana Valley Kennel Club, Anaheim, CA (1953)
A written report was provided on new clubs licensed in May and June: Carolina Irish Setter Club • Hungarian Pumi Club of America
Request for AKC Membership Approved:
Berger Picard Club of America, 95 Households, First License Show: February 7, 2009, Published in May and June Gazettes
Irish Red and White Setter Association of America, 95 Households, First License Show: February 7, 2009, Published in May and June Gazettes
Retired Kennel Name Request for De Strathcona - The Board VOTED to approve the request of the Briard Club of America, Inc to retire the “De Strathcona” kennel name.
Bulldog Proposed Breed Standard Revision - The Board VOTED to approve the proposed revisions to the Head: Eyes, Color of Coat and Disqualifications sections of the Bulldog standard with an effective date of August 31, 2016.
Bulldog Standard Sections with Revisions (underlined): Head: Eyes and Eyelids -The eyes, seen from the front, should be situated low down in the skull, as far from the ears as possible, and their corners should be in a straight line at right angles with the stop. They should be quite in front of the head, as wide apart as possible, provided their outer corners are within the outline of the cheeks when viewed from the front. They should be quite round in form, of moderate size, neither sunken nor bulging, and in color should be very dark. Blue or green eye(s) or parti-colored eyes are a disqualification. The lids should cover the white of the eyeball, when the dog is looking directly forward, and the lid should show no "haw." Ears -The ears should be set high in the head, the front inner edge of each ear joining the outline of the skull at the top back corner of skull, so as to place them as wide apart, and as high, and as far from the eyes as possible. In size they should be small and thin. The shape termed "rose ear" is the most desirable. The rose ear folds inward at its back lower edge, the upper front edge curving over, outward and backward, showing part of the inside of the burr. (The ears should not be carried erect or prick-eared or buttoned and should never be cropped.) Skull -The skull should be very large, and in circumference, in front of the ears, should measure at least the height of the dog at the shoulders. Viewed from the front, it should appear very high from the corner of the lower jaw to the apex of the skull, and also very broad and square. Viewed at the side, the head should appear very high, and very short from the point of the nose to occiput. The forehead should be flat (not rounded or domed), neither too prominent nor overhanging the face. Cheeks -The cheeks should be well rounded, protruding sideways and outward beyond the eyes. Stop -The temples or frontal bones should be very well defined, broad, square and high, causing a hollow or groove between the eyes. This indentation, or stop, should be both broad and deep and extend up the middle of the forehead, dividing the head vertically, being traceable to the top of the skull. Face and Muzzle -The face, measured from the front of the cheekbone to the tip of the nose, should be extremely short, the muzzle being very short, broad, turned upward and very deep from the corner of the eye to the corner of the mouth. Nose -The nose should be large, broad and black, its tip set back deeply between the eyes. The distance from bottom of stop, between the eyes, to the tip of nose should be as short as possible and not exceed the length from the tip of nose to the edge of underlip. The nostrils should be wide, large and black, with a well-defined line between them. Any nose other than black is objectionable and a brown or liver-colored nose shall disqualify. Lips -The chops or "flews" should be thick, broad, pendant and very deep, completely overhanging the lower jaw at each side. They join the underlip in front and almost or quite cover the teeth, which should be scarcely noticeable when the mouth is closed. Bite -Jaws -The jaws should be massive, very broad, square and "undershot," the lower jaw projecting considerably in front of the upper jaw and turning up. Teeth ¬The teeth should be large and strong, with the canine teeth or tusks wide apart, and the six small teeth in front, between the canines, in an even, level row.
Color of Coat: The color of coat should be uniform, pure of its kind and brilliant. Colors are red, white, fawn, fallow, or any combination of the foregoing. Patterns and markings may include brindle, piebald, ticking, black masks, black tipping, and a minimal amount of solid black in piebalds. All other colors or markings are a disqualification. The merle pattern is a disqualification.
Disqualifications: Blue or green eye(s) or parti-colored eyes Brown or liver-colored nose. Colors or Markings not defined in the standard. The merle pattern.
Leonberger Proposed Breed Standard Revision - The Board VOTED to approve the proposed revisions to Leonberger standard with an effective date of August 31, 2016. Leonberger Standard with Revisions (underlined):
SIZE, PROPORTION, SUBSTANCE
Size: An adult male is 28 to 31˝ inches in height (30 inches preferred). An adult female is 25˝ inches to 29˝ inches, (27˝ inches preferred). Weight is in proportion to the overall size and structure. When proportion, substance, and balance are present, a slight deviation above standard is tolerated.
PROPORTION: Height to length of body is 9:10. Height is measured at the withers; body
The head, in its entirety, is deeper than it is broad, rectangular shaped, with no wrinkles. The length of muzzle to length of backskull is equal. Cheeks are only slightly developed. The male head is strong and masculine, while the female head always expresses femininity. Mask: Face is covered with a full black mask that extends from the nose up to and over the eyes. A lesser mask is acceptable, but not desirable. Expression: Goodnatured, soft, and intelligent expression. Eyes: Dark brown is preferred over light brown. Eyes are medium size, oval to almond shaped, neither deep-set nor protruding. Eyelids are close fitting, not showing any haw or sclera. Ears: When alert, ears are level with top of skull and set slightly forward. They are of medium size, triangular, fleshy, hanging flat and close to the head. Tips are level with corners of the mouth. Skull: As seen from the front and in profile, backskull is slightly arched. Skull is slightly longer than wide and the width of backskull is only slightly broader than it is at the eyes. Stop: Clearly recognizable and moderately defined. Muzzle: Nasal bridge of even breadth, never running to a point, level or slightly arched (Roman nose); never dipped. The jaw remains broad and strong between the canines. Planes: As seen from the side, the planes of muzzle and backskull are parallel. Nose: Large with clearly outlined nostrils, always black. Lips: Tight, corners closed and dry, outer lips black in color. Some depigmentation due to aging is acceptable. Teeth/Bite: Complete dentition of 42 teeth (20 upper, 22 lower), strong, meeting in a correct scissors bite, lower incisors touching inside of upper incisors. A level bite is accepted. Serious Fault - Lips - Drooling or wet mouth. Disqualification – Expression/Mask: Complete lack of mask. Teeth/Bite: More than one missing tooth other than M3s.
NECK, TOPLINE, BODY, TAIL
Neck: Muscular, well set on shoulders, blends smoothly into withers, of sufficient length to allow for proud head carriage. No dewlap. Topline: Withers set above a firm level back that flows into a gently sloping croup. Rump not higher than withers. Body: Chest is broad, roomy, and deep, reaching at least to the level of the elbows, pronounced prosternum. Ribs: Well- sprung, oval. Underline: Only slightly tucked up. Loin: Broad, compact, strong, well-muscled. Croup: Broad, relatively long, gently sloped, flowing smoothly into root of tail. Tail: While standing relaxed, tail hangs straight down with the last vertebrae reaching to or below the hock. In movement, tail is carried no higher than the level of the back, with a curve up at the end permitted. An exuberant tail carriage, though higher than ideal, should not be confused with a high, incorrectly placed tail. Serious Fault - High tail carriage with tail curled over back at all times, whether standing or in motion.
Rear Assembly: Powerful, muscular with substantial bone. Angulation: In balance with forequarters. Legs: Viewed from the rear, the legs are straight and parallel, with stifles and paws turned neither in nor out, placed widely enough apart to match a properly built body. Thighs: Upper and lower of equal length, slanting and strongly muscled. Stifles: Angle clearly defined. Hocks: Substantial bone with a distinct angle between lower thigh and rear pastern; well let down. Dewclaws: Rear dewclaws may be present. Feet: Turned neither in nor out, and may be slightly elongated. Toes arched.
Leonbergers have a medium to long, water resistant, double coat on the body and short fine hair on the muzzle and front of limbs. Outer coat is medium-soft to coarse and lies flat. It is straight, with some generalized wave permitted. Mature males carry a mane, which extends over neck and chest. The male coat is typically longer than the female coat. The undercoat is soft and dense, although it may be less so in summer months or warmer climates. In spite of the double coat, the outline of the body is always recognizable. Leonbergers have some ear feathering and ample feathering on fore and rear legs. Tail is very well furnished. Leonbergers are to be presented with no sculpting, scissoring, trimming of whiskers, or any other alterations whatsoever, except for neatening of the feet. Fault: Parted or curly coat.
Coat colors are lion-yellow, golden to red and red-brown, sand colored (cream, pale yellow) and all combinations thereof, always with a black mask. All colors may have black tips (some with long black tips) on the outer coat, but black must not be the basic color. Dark coat colors are accompanied by a lighter colored undercoat and feathering of front and hind legs, that blend harmoniously with the basic body coloring. A small, unobtrusive stripe or white patch on the chest and some white hairs on toes is tolerated. Disqualification: Any coat color other than those listed. White hair on chest that exceeds 5 inches in width; white extending beyond toes.
The Leonberger has a ground-covering, even and balanced gait. The stride is powerful, free and fluid, with good reach and strong drive, giving the impression of effortless power. In motion, the Leonberger maintains a level topline. Viewed from the front and from behind, forelegs and hind legs travel straight. As the dog’s speed increases, the legs tend to converge toward the centerline.
The gentle character and even temperament of the Leonberger is of utmost importance for fulfilling their role as a family companion. The Leonberger is confident, with a steady, playful demeanor. The breed is willing to please and possesses a good capacity for learning. Serious fault - Quarrelsomeness or hostility towards people or dogs in normal situations; unwarranted show of timidity or nervousness.
Any deviation from these specifications is a fault. In determining whether a fault is minor, serious, or major, these two factors should be used as a guide: Deviation - The extent to which it deviates from the standard; and Impact - The extent to which such deviation would actually affect the Leonberger’s phenotype or ability to fulfill its role as a family companion, and working dog.
Mask - Complete lack of mask
Teeth - More than one missing tooth other than M3s.
Color - Any coat color other than those listed. White hair on chest exceeding 5 inches in width, white extending beyond toes.
Agility – Change in Required Wearing of Identifying Numbers - The Board VOTED to amend Chapter 1, Section 19 of the Regulations for Agility Trials to eliminate the mandatory use of identifying stickers/armbands worn by agility exhibitors. Clubs may, at their option, still issue stickers/armbands if they desire. This is effective August 1, 2016.
Section 19. Running Order - Paragraph 4
Exhibitors may be provided stickers (or armbands) indicating their dog’s catalog number for that trial. These may be mailed with the judging schedule or available for pick up at the trial. The exhibitor must wear the sticker (or armband) if provided by the club.
Allow Junior Only Trials in Agility, Obedience and Rally - The Board VOTED to allow clubs licensed for obedience, rally and agility to hold Junior Only Trials. The purpose of a Junior Only Trial is to provide for camaraderie and mentoring available in a relaxed atmosphere. A Junior Only Trial must be open to all breeds, including dogs listed with AKC Canine Partners and dogs must be eligible for the classes in which they are entered. All regular classes held at Junior Only Trials will count toward titles. Junior Only Trials may be held in conjunction with a club’s regular event or may be a stand-alone event. This change is effective February 1, 2017.
TSA Working Dogs - The shortage of working dogs both for detector and patrol work in the United States has been highly reported in the news media. At Dr. Battaglia’s suggestion, AKC is currently exploring ways in which we can help develop a reliable source of dogs for use by TSA and other groups. A brief report on two trips to TSA facilities were given, with more discussion planned at the August 2015 meeting.
AKC DISCIPLINE GUIDELINES -EFFECTIVE JULY 12, 2016 Explanatory Notes
• Articles XII and XIV allow for discipline for “conduct alleged to have been prejudicial to the best interests of purebred dogs, purebred dog events, or the AKC.”
• Discipline in excess of the Aggravated term, or less than the Mitigated term, must be approved by the AKC Board of Directors (“Board”). Discipline imposed for cases not covered by the Guidelines must be approved by the Board.
• Circumstances that could, but would not necessarily result in an act of misconduct being Mitigated would include, but not be limited to:
The lack of any prior offense.
The lack of experience as a participant in events.
The minimal nature of the offense.
Recognition of wrongdoing.
The recommendation of the Events Committee.
• Circumstances that could, but that would not necessarily result in an act of misconduct being Aggravated would include, but not be limited to:
A record of prior offense(s).
Extensive experience as a participant in events.
The seriousness of the offense.
Refusal to acknowledge wrongdoing prior to formal issuance of Charges.
The recommendation of the Events Committee
The action(s) of the individual resulted in the death of dog(s)
• An especially egregious offense will result in a more severe length of suspension and/or fine than suggested in the Guidelines.
• Multiple serious offenses may result in a lifetime suspension of all AKC privileges.
• These Guidelines will be reviewed from time to time.
• Event Suspension is a suspension of event privileges for the individual and applies to dogs registered or co-registered at the time of suspension, or subsequently obtained during the term of suspension, which may not be entered or compete in events during the term of suspension unless they are transferred to another individual.
• Registration Suspension is a suspension of registration privileges, which means AKC will not accord registration of any litter, or individual dog or transfer ownership of a dog solely or in part by the suspended individual. In addition, AKC will not register any litter of dogs if the sire of the litter was owned solely or in part by a person who is suspended on the date the mating occurred.
• Suspension of all privileges would include both event suspension and registration suspension.
• When discipline guidelines become less punitive, the new penalty (suspension period and conditions and fine, if applicable) will be applied to persons currently under suspension for that offense.
• For violations denoted with an asterisk (*), reinstatement is contingent on passing an AKC kennel inspection, which will be scheduled only after the associated fine has been paid.
• The classification of an offense(s) within these Guidelines will be made by either the Management Disciplinary Committee (“MDC”) or the Staff Event Committee (“SEC”). SEC will base the classification on the wording in the complaint and may determine that multiple offenses apply. The penalties for multiple offenses will run concurrently unless MDC or SEC determine that based on the severity of the offenses or record of prior offenses consecutive penalties are warranted.
IN THOSE CASES WHERE AN EVENT OR REGISTRATION SUSPENSION IS CALLED FOR, THE AKC MANAGEMENT DISCIPLINARY COMMITTEE MAY RECOMMEND THE SUSPENSION OF ALL PRIVILEGES, WHEN WARRANTED BY THE SEVERITY OF THE CASE. SUSPENSION OF ALL AKC PRIVILEGES
Definitions of Offenses:
Abuse: Improper treatment which could cause serious injury to an animal.
Cruelty: Conscious action or inaction
that may endanger life or cause serious health consequences to
Harassment: Inappropriate comments and/or conduct regarding but not limited to another individual’s, race, color, religion, disability, national origin, age, sexual orientation, or gender.
Improper Treatment: Inappropriate treatment or handling of an animal not likely to cause serious injury, e.g. excessive or harsh discipline/training.
Neglect: Inadequate care or voluntary inattention to basic needs, ignoring the safety and well-being of animals because of haste or ignorance.
Deceased Judges: Ms. Harriette D. Borsuch, Mrs. Hildegard Compton, Mr. Robert A. Gough, Mrs. Peggy Kessler, Mrs. Cindy McElderry, Mr. Russell J. Samuels, Mrs. Mary Jo Shields, Mrs. Dorothy Welsh
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