Responsible Breeding Steps


21 -- Encourage New Owners to Register the Puppy with the AKC

Congratulations -- you have successfully bred a litter of puppies! You have performed the health checks, assisted at the birth, worried over the newborns, and laughed at the puppies' antics as they grew. And you have accomplished the most important task-you have found loving families for the puppies to grow up with. Before you send those puppies on their way, be sure to inform their new owners of their best source (besides yourself!) for information on sharing a long, fulfilling, active life with their new pet-the American Kennel Club.

The AKC is dedicated to providing service and support to the owners of purebred dogs. To accomplish this mission, we have to be put in contact with those owners via the registration applications. As a breeder, you can help us reach out to new owners by performing these simple steps:

  1. Register your litter. An individual puppy cannot be registered until its litter is registered; therefore, it is essential that you submit an AKC Litter Registration Application in plenty of time to receive your litter kit prior to the sale of the pups.
  2. Give the individual registration application to the new owners, and help them complete it properly. The application requires information and signatures from you and the new owners. Since the new owners may be unfamiliar with the form, you should see that it is properly completed as the sale is finalized, and that it goes home with them along with the puppy.
  3. Encourage the new owners to submit the form to the AKC. Many new owners erroneously believe that the application is the dog's registration papers. You should explain that their dog is not officially registered until the form is submitted with the proper fee. Show them an example of a registration certificate so they will know what to expect back from the AKC.
  4. Emphasize the importance of AKC registration. New owners should be told that without an AKC registration number, their dog cannot be entered in dog shows, companion dog events, or performance events. They should be told that without an AKC registration number, any offspring of their dog (if breeding is a viable option) will not be registrable. Perhaps more importantly, they should be told that if they do not register their dog, they will be missing out on the wealth of information and services the AKC is eager to provide to the owners of registered dogs.


The AKC appreciates the efforts of breeders who encourage puppy buyers to register their dogs. As a special registration benefit, the AKC has arranged a Complimentary 60-Day Trial of AKC Pet Insurance* for newly registered puppies. Details about this special complimentary benefit will be sent to you shortly after registration. In addition they are automatically included in an outreach program designed to enhance the dog-owning experience. New owners receive a complimentary copy of AKC Puppies magazine and a list of local and national breed clubs. The AKC will keep owners up to date on exciting dog events held around the country, on legislation affecting dog owners, and on advances and alerts on canine health. Owners will be made aware of programs such as AKC Reunite, which can return a lost dog to its home, and the Canine Good Citizen tests, which reward dogs for good manners and promote the benefits of responsible dog ownership. And that's just the beginning.

The AKC respects and honors the bond between dogs and humans. Whether a puppy is purchased as a show prospect, a hunting dog, a future agility star, or a beloved pet, the relationship between a dog and its owners is one that provides many rewards. Those rewards can be multiplied with an AKC registration. As a breeder, you can help make that possible.

AKC 60-Day
* The 60-Day Trial Plan is provided by the master policy issued to the Association of American Pet Owners. Activation required. Administered by PetPartners, Inc. Underwritten by American Pet Insurance Company, 907 NW Ballard Way, Seattle WA 98107-4607. Not available in all states and only available to U.S. residents. Eligibility restrictions apply. Contact PetPartners, Inc. for terms and conditions. Must be activated within 28 days of AKC Certificate Issued date. Visit or call toll free at 1-866-725-2747.