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Has animal rights and shelter advertising destroyed the image of hobby breeders? Have the registries betrayed us for bigger puppy mill income?


March 12, 2015 | TheDogPress.com


Janet Underwood sent excellent, doable ideas on Changing The Image Of Dog Breeders, starting with “I agree wholeheartedly with Mike Murray's article {1} about the image of dog breeders. Our rights to breed dogs are quickly being taken away from us by city, county, and state ordinances, and literally unwarranted raids on breeders. It's not going to get any better until dog breeder organizations wake up and start making changes that put them in a better light.”  (Help change the image of dog breeders, please add your comments below.)


Changing The Image Of Dog BreedersThe problem is that we don’t have any dog breeder organizations! “High Volume Breeders” (another of AKC’s acronyms for commercial dog breeders) feed AKC’s hungry belly. Therefore any attempt to unionize hobby and show breeders into a lobbying association is put to sleep before it can even get started.


She also rang the bell about Dog Club Memberships. “The first thing show breeders should do is stop isolating themselves from pet owners. Restructure the national breed clubs to have two levels of membership -- a general membership that is open to pet owners and anyone who wants to become a member and the executive membership, which essentially would be the same as the clubs are presently. The general membership would receive quarterly publications from the club that tell them how to take care of their pets, showcase different breeders, discuss issues regarding pet ownership and how groups like PETA and HSUS really want to take away their rights to own pets. In short, this could become a way of getting our side of the story to the public. It'd also be good to have some fun activities for the general members, such as contests in different regions that would enable people to show off their dogs. Pet owners love their dogs and would love to show them off!”


On improving the image and raising skills of the purebred dog breeder, Janet suggested “The American Kennel Club should get involved and set up a school to teach people how to be responsible and educated breeders, and then have a registry of people who have graduated from this school. The program could be conducted online. In short, dog breeders need to realize it's a new day.”


Janet also highlighted Breeder References. “If you don’t have a waiting list for your most precious product, you have an image problem. Pet buyers are shopping online and they are becoming smarter, looking for perks and add-ons. They are used to seeing “references” and comments from other shoppers for that website or product.”


Referring to Mike Murray’s article on Dog Breeder Image {1} which said we take a lesson from motorcycle gangs who changed their image from noisy belligerent ragtag ruffians to heroes with Toys For Tots, Janet said “We need to change the mindset that has been created in part by the term “backyard breeders” and exaggerated by over-zealous animal rights advocates.”


She missed the problem.  AKC and UKC are not going to offend their biggest customers by promoting the value of a puppy from dedicated hobby show breeders. Let’s face it-they make a lot more money from puppy mill registrations. So much that AKC even provided free software so that pet shops can register “commercially bred” puppy mill puppies at point of sale! What? You didn’t know about AKC’s pet shop PRIME Registration Service? {2}


Janet mentioned an old article in TheDogPress where we asked “Who reading this is brave enough to join with other purebred dog breeders to form a meaningful “union” to protect our image?”


Is it too late? Do dedicated hobby and show breeders still exist? Do real breeders still show to prove the value of their dogs? Or is it puppy mills finishing a dog so they can compete against US for “champion sired” puppies?


We want to hear from you, including AKC who checks every article in TheDogPress. If you want to help change the image of “dog breeders” or you know of a purebred dog breeders association worthy of our support, please tell us below.


Ref #1 Dog Breeder Image Needs Work!          Ref #2 AKC’s Pet Shop PRIME Registration


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