Inspections Maintain Registry Integrity and Educate Breeders
By Theresa Shea, editor
When long-time breeder and hunter Wayne Campbell
received a call last July from AKC Executive Field
Agent Marcus Bach, the two set up a meeting at Campbell#8217;s
Chesterfield, Virginia, kennel the next day.
#8220;When the inspector arrived, we went down and
looked through the kennel,#8221; Campbell said. #8220;Everything
seemed up-to-par, and we came back here to look at
testing ensures the AKC registry is the most
accurate in the world.
Bach DNA-tested a litter of nine Redbone Coonhounds
and later used his laptop computer to see that Campbell#8217;s
breeding and ownership records matched AKC records.
Bach completed the inspections report on-site and
left Campbell with a copy of the report. Campbell
was in compliance with AKC record-keeping rules and
care and condition policies and passed inspection.
This was the second official AKC inspection of Campbell#8217;s
30-dog kennel of Redbone Coonhounds, a follow-up inspection
for one conducted nearly two years earlier in August
During the first inspection, Bach suggested Campbell
consider microchipping his dogs to make it easier
to identify them.
Campbell took Bach#8217;s advice.
#8220;Identifying the dogs with microchips has helped
us tremendously. We#8217;re going to microchip every
puppy that comes out of our kennel before it leaves
our premises,#8221; Campbell said. #8220;We were
#8220;We welcomed the inspection. We set the kennel
up ourselves with runs and septic tanks as clean as
we could,#8221; Campbell said. #8220;Having someone
come in to give us suggestions of a better way to
do things #8211; we think it#8217;s great.#8221;
#8220;Sometimes you do things day after day after
day. It#8217;s always good to get somebody to say,
#8216;Hey, is this the best way?#8217;#8221; Campbell
Campbell#8217;s was one of about 5,000 inspections
the AKC staff of 15 field agents will conduct this
The AKC is unique among the purebred dog registries
in the world in that it maintains a systematic and
sustained investigation and inspection effort to ensure
compliance with standards that support the health,
safety and welfare of dogs and the environment in
which they are maintained.
#8220;One of our goals is education. We want
to help breeders do the best jobs they can,#8221;
said Bach. #8220;Some people are excited to see
us show up to inspect their kennels and dogs, and
some people are a little nervous. We try to put
them at ease. If we find a problem, we help the
breeder take care of it.#8221;
#8220;If, for instance, a breeder is having a
problem getting a dog registered with the AKC, we
can look up the paperwork and figure out what they
need and call the office right then to fix it, if
it#8217;s during office hours,#8221; Bach explained.
#8220;Or if someone hasn#8217;t gotten a litter
kit back yet, we can find out its status. Even if
we can#8217;t take care of a problem that day,
we can often explain what they need to do to get
the problem taken care of.#8221;
#8220;We#8217;re looking at their facilities,
the condition of their kennels, at the conditions
of their dogs and at all their dogs#8217; ownership,
breeding and litter records,#8221; said Bach.
Regarding kennel conditions, inspectors check for
structural soundness of the kennel, sufficient shelter
to protect dogs from the elements, adequate and
breed-appropriate space for each dog per kennel
or cage, a source of fresh air and an ample supply
of artificial or natural light. As far as cleanliness
goes, inspectors look for an overall clean appearance,
absence of fecal material and other debris, clean
water containers with sufficient fresh water, fresh
food provided daily and if bedding is available,
that it is parasite-free.
Inspectors check the dogs for: visible signs of excessive
parasitic infestation; untreated, visible wounds;
matted and dirty coats; and appropriate weight. They
also see whether dogs have access to daily exercise
out of their cages or pens.
inspectors travel with laptop computers and
printers and leave breeders with copies of
the inspection reports.
DNA certification is required for dogs that sire
seven or more litters in their lifetime or more
than three litters in a calendar year as well as
for dogs whose semen is collected for fresh-extended
(chilled) or frozen use. DNA technology allows breeders
and the AKC to ensure that the AKC registry is the
most accurate in the world.
#8220;If the breeder has litters available and
sire and dams on the premises, we may take DNA samples,#8221;
Bach said. #8220;It validates what they already
know and what they already do.#8221;
The AKC Investigations and Inspections Department
routinely conducts inspections of breeders who use
the AKC registry. Any AKC customer (breeder, retail
pet shop or broker) who registers seven or more
litters per year or conducts 25 or more registration
transactions per year is automatically added to
the list for inspection. Inspections are also scheduled
based on supported written complaints. Inspections
may be conducted unannounced or by appointment.
Unannounced inspections occur Monday through Saturday
between 8 a.m. and 6 p.m.
#8220;The AKC's active role through its Investigations
and Inspections Department is protecting and ensuring
the integrity of the registry and improving conditions
for our wonderful dogs and puppies,#8221; said
AKC Director of Inspections and Investigations Steve
#8220;Inspections are a simple process. Inspectors
are courteous and respectful. The system is designed
to help breeders come into compliance with AKC policies
#8220;Only for the most egregious circumstances where
people can#8217;t comply or won#8217;t comply with
AKC regulations, do we take disciplinary action #8211;
but that#8217;s usually only when a breeder won#8217;t
comply because we always work to find a way to help
them,#8221; Robinson added.
|The AKC offers a booklet that clearly
explains the rules for anyone who owns one or
more dogs that they breed, sell, transfer or
give away. Access the rules, regulations and
applicable forms on the AKC website. Or order
a copy of the easy-to-use #8220;A User#8217;s
Guide to the AKC Rules for Record Keeping and
Identification#8221; by contacting AKC Customer
(919) 233-9767. Ask for part number PRWKBK.
|| Ronald N. Rella, director,
Theresa Shea, editor | Email: AKCbreeder@akc.org
Customer Service | Phone: 919-233-9767 | Email: firstname.lastname@example.org
© The American Kennel Club 2005