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AKC says “Responsible Breeders” need puppy mills and commercial dog breeders to help us fight legislation and fill demand for purebreds. 


April 2017 Update | TheDogPress

Barbara J. Andrews, Editor-In-Chief, SAAB


Are you still buying that concept? We first asked that in Nov. 2011 and most breeders were offended, many vented privately to this editor - because they didn't want to get on AKC's black list... Yes, several actually used that term.


A lot has happened since then.  Many successful show breeders threw in the towel.  Others were so fearful of local laws and animal rights whackos that they spayed, neutered, and cried a lot on show weekends. Others decided to join the party and become judges instead of trying to maintain a breeding program with only 3 intact bitches.  Some tried co-ownership with responsible people so that they could stay involved in the show ring.


Let's step back a few years and define the term “Responsible Breeder” which was first used by TheDogPlace, in 1998.  AKC appropriated it as a description for show and hobby breeders who sell directly to “responsible” owners.  We took that to mean that Responsible Breeders do not wholesale litters. They don’t sell to pet shops, brokers, or anyone who smells the least bit like a puppy mill.


In 2002 AKC invented another term: "high volume breeder" which sounded better than "puppy mill".  The American Kennel Club must have bought whitewash by the truckload!  The Board tasked its newly created High Volume Breeders Committee{1} with selling responsible breeders on the idea that HVB are needed, that show and hobby breeders can't meet demand, oh, and something about legislation... Judge-Delegate Connie Vanacore's efforts to convince us{2} that it was necessary is just one of the gallons of whitewash used to blur the line between "us" and "them."  At one time, breeders could withhold AKC registration papers which eliminated puppy mill inquiries.  AKC didn’t like that loss of income so it countered by offering Limited Registration. Whoops.  Dogs sold on Limited Registration obtained full registration status without the knowledge or consent of the breeder.  But they could always hire AKC’s Administrative Pedigree Research service{3}


All that rhetoric got my ears up and my nose to the ground, the result being that The Dog Press blew the lid off PRIME, the secret software for pet shops that advances the interests of "High Volume" commercial breeders, i.e. puppy mills, while diminishing the value of a well bred purebred and further thwarting the Responsible Dog Breeders' dwindling puppy sales!

Having tested the waters with changing puppy mills to HVBC dog breeders, it took gallons of white wash to stop a complete revolt when TheDogPress.com revealed AKC's super-secret Pet Shop PRIME{4} software program to help pet shops manage inventory and register puppies right in the store.  If there's any question about the puppy’s pedigree or eligibility to be AKC Registered, there’s a special number to call.  Perhaps that was part of the reason for the Pedigree Research Service?


What does this have to do with defining ourselves as Dog Breeders?  We’ve come a long way baby!  From marketing ourselves as “Responsible Breeders” and a proud part of the AKC Registry, we are now asked to join with pet shops, puppy mills, commercial breeders, and “high volume breeders” to (keep a straight face now) "fight animal rights legislation."


Within two years the American Kennel Club had deliberately obliterated the distinction between “us” and “them.”  But there was more to come.  With show breeders losing good homes to a public increasingly convinced that cross bred dogs are healthier than purebreds, AKC feathered that nest by accepting Mixed Breeds into limited competition in April 2009.  Thus Designer Dog owners can say their dogs are now "AKC registered."  Is that why AKC has never funded commercials or public awareness information that defines why genetically tested, bred-to-the-standard AKC purebred dogs are a better choice than mutts?


The economic impact on private dog breeders has been terrible.  Many are selling show prospects to pet homes - if they can find them.  By 2012 many top show breeders had turned to puppy selling sites to try to sell their pet puppies.


The public neither knows or cares about the difference between high volume breeders and responsible dog breeders. Today they think a puppy mill or shelter dog is as good as a fourth generation purebred Champion with performance titles and health clearances. So how do we separate ourselves from the High Volume Breeder, the Puppy Miller, i.e. Commercial Breeder? We advertise in show magazines but do pet buyers see the ad? No. Do they care? No. Does AKC care? No. Puppies from our top winning special have no more value than a puppy mill caricature of a purebred.

I don’t know about you but I'm a HOBBY BREEDER who excels in the AKC show ring.  I’m picky about who I sell to.  I don’t care what AKC says, I don’t give ANY kind of registration papers with pets until I have veterinary proof of spay or neuter.  Hopefully they won't breed the dog and get AKC to register the puppies, see (3).  Should that happen again, I have an attorney standing by.


I've supported AKC for nearly 50 years but I refuse to be coerced by AKC's need to recapture puppy mill registrations.  If there were NO puppy mills, hobby dog breeders COULD fill the demand for quality purebred puppies.  Do you remember where families got their quality pets or hunting dogs before the 70s?  Before veterans (and Andrew Hunte) got $millions in federal loans and grants and puppy farmers were born?


A reader asked "where are we today?"  The answer is painful but here goes.  A decade after AKC supported PAWS, re-named puppy mills as "High Volume Breeders" and instituted the High Volume Breeders Committee (HVBC) we have been conned into accepting our most dangerous competitor in the puppy sales market.


If you've been around more than a decade (three times the lifespan of the average show breeder in 2012) ask yourself if you have the same demand for your quality puppies?  Y'know, the ones you spend so much time and money to create; researching genetics, doing health tests, showing the sire and dam, raising the precious litter in your home?  Thanks to AKC's wheeling and dealing with puppy mills (and dog food companies that promote shelter mutts) prospective dog owners go to a pet shop for "dogs for sale" sites.


Think a minute: If they go to a local dog show, they see mutts in AKC "show" rings (Obedience, Agility, etc etc) and ever-fewer purebreds, and are unlikely to find a Clumber or Wolfhound they saw on Animal Planet.  They will probably give up and online to a "(insert breed) puppies for sale" site.  Why would they think about calling YOU?  Is there still demand for "show and breeding stock"? Then ask yourself who would risk being raided by animal control, zoned out of existence, or buy a business license and open their homes to USDA, HSUS or local inspectors just to be able to breed purebred dogs?  Oh, wait, I think I hear you saying "only commercial breeders do all that."  Right.  You got the point.


If you disagree or have thoughts on how to preserve our sport, enjoy our hobby, and continue a tradition as old as mankind, email me your signed comments to be included in a follow-up 2017 report.

1211-1641704  http://www.thedogpress.com/editorials/Dog-Breeders-Defined_LP.asp



{1} The High Volume Breeder Committee brainwashing the fancy

{2} An Argument in Favor of "Petland" Project open and shut "NO!"

{3} AKC's New Pedigree Research service Registers ANYTHING!

{4} AKC’s Pet Shop PRIME Puppy inventory management for pet shops!


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AKC Registration Fraud

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See the signed letter offering cut-rates, free deals and overnight registrations!

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