HOW TO EVALUATE A BREEDER

The reputable breeder feels responsibility toward the breed itself, towards the dogs he or she produces, and to the person who buys them. A reputable breeder spends time and money on matters that are in the best interest of the breed.

HOW TO RECOGNIZE A REPUTABLE BREEDER.

1. A reputable breeder participates in events sponsored by national clubs such as the American Kennel Club or United Kennel Club. These events include conformation shows, obedience, agility, field and herding trials, and coursing and tracking. This is the reason he or she breeds dogs, not to produce a cash crop.
2. A reputable breeder never sells puppies to pet shops or brokers, but only through direct contact.
3. A reputable breeder does not release a puppy into a new home until it is at least 8 weeks old.
4. A reputable breeder shows you the mother and all of the puppies rather than bringing out one puppy at a time for you to view.
5. A reputable breeder sells puppies that are properly vaccinated and advises you of any screening (such as hip x-rays) that should be done as the puppy grows older.
6. A reputable breeder will give you the following documents when you buy a puppy:
a. A health record listing the dates and type of vaccines and worming treatment received by the puppy so you can present this record to your veterinarian.
b. The registration papers or a contract under which the registration will be given when you provide proof that the puppy has been spayed or neutered. If the registration papers have not been returned from the registry, the breeder will give you the name of the dam and sire, their registration numbers, and the puppy's date of birth.
c. A copy of the puppy's pedigree and, for a puppy or dog purchased in California, a copy of the Dog Pedigree Registration Disclosure signed by you, the buyer.
7. A reputable breeder will also discuss the pros and cons of owning this particular breed and will advise you of the training the puppy will need. Even after you buy a puppy, the breeder's help and advice do not end, but continue throughout the dog's life, a responsibility cheerfully accepted by the reputable breeder.

CODE OF ETHICS

This code is set forth with the realization that ethics cannot be legislated and that most individuals intend to do what is right. The purpose of the code is to set forth principles of practice advocated by the Council as members strive to preserve the quality of their breeds. The code represents the minimum in ethical practices; how best to conform to these practices should be determined by the good judgment of individuals and their national or regional clubs.

QUALITY

I shall:

1. Comply with all AKC and/or national breed club rules and regulations and breed dogs according to the approved national breed standards.
2. Use only physically and temperamentally sound dogs and screen for genetic defects using available resources such as OFA, GDC, and CERF testing, when appropriate. I shall permit breeding only to registered, healthy, quality animals, appropriately screened for inherited diseases, owned by individuals who give satisfactory evidence that they will give their dogs proper care and attention and who are in agreement with this code of ethics.
3. Measure the quality of my dogs by regular participation in events sponsored by the AKC, national breed clubs or equivalent recognized organizations.

ETHICS

I shall:

1. Not sell stock under false representation, nor use misleading or untruthful statements in advertising or selling.
2. Not degrade any person, nor his or her breed or kennel, who meets the standards of the Council's Referral Service.
3. Help educate the public in those areas of the dog fancy with which I am familiar.
4. Provide full disclosure on all dogs and puppies sold. Full disclosure covers all medical records, information on the history, behavior, temperament, diseases, idiosyncrasies, and the care and feeding of my breed.
5. Not breed a bitch until she is mature, or more often than once a year.
6. Not place a puppy in a new home until he or she is at least eight weeks old.

RESPONSIBILITIES

I shall:

1. In the interest of improving the breed, maintain complete records on litters bred, puppies and dogs sold, medical and general records and comments on the behavior of my dogs.
2. Before breeding, consider the full responsibility of placing the puppies I do not intend to keep. I shall accept full responsibility for every dog that I breed. I shall sell on a contract that ensures that the breeder is contacted whenever the owner cannot keep a dog at any time in the dog's life. As the breeder, I shall either assist in the placement of the dog or accept its return. As owner of a stud dog, I shall assist in the placement of, or accept the return of, any dog sired by my stud dog whose breeder of record is unable to fulfill his or her responsibility to the progeny.
3. Issue restricted registration papers, subject to the rules of the AKC, or withhold registration papers until proof of spaying or neutering is presented on any dog sold or placed as a companion. If feasible, I shall provide spaying or neutering prior to selling or placing a dog, in order to prevent the overpopulation of my breed.
4. Not place at auction or sell or consign puppies or adult dogs to pet stores, brokers, or other commercial dealers.
5. Ensure that my dogs are not a nuisance to my neighbors or my community.
6. Under no circumstances, surrender a purebred dog or puppy to a humane society or shelter. If the animal cannot be placed for reasons of health or temperament, I shall take responsibility for the euthanizing of the dog.
7. If a dog of my breed is in need of being rescued, notify breed rescue or make the rescue myself, if feasible.
8. If I participate in rescue, either spay or neuter all rescue animals before placement or assume the responsibility of ensuring that it is done.