There are many wonderful programs that set the American Kennel Club (AKC®) apart from all other dog registries. The AKC, for example, is the only all-breed, not-for-profit dog registry in the United States that has a significant kennel inspection program. The AKC Investigations and Inspections Department conducts inspections because it is vital to the AKC's commitment of promoting responsible dog ownership and breeding practices, and protecting the integrity of our registry.
The AKC Investigations & Inspections Department conducts an average of 5,000 breeder inspections a year, which include inspection of the record-keeping and dog identification practices, DNA testing, and an examination of the care and conditions of the dogs and kennel facilities. Inspections are primarily conducted based on the number of litters registered each year with the AKC, as well as on written, signed, and substantiated complaints.
A critical component of AKC’s Inspections and Investigations Department is enforcement of the AKC’s Care and Conditions Policy. This policy has been established to make certain that dogs that comprise the registry have access to adequate food and water, are in good physical condition, and have access to daily exercise. The Inspector also makes certain that the kennels or enclosures are safe, clean, and of a sufficient size so that overcrowding does not exist. The AKC will suspend the individual’s ability to register dogs with the AKC and compete in AKC events if they refuse an inspection or do not correct areas identified as needing improvement. AKC privileges will only be reinstated once the problems have been addressed. If any unsanitary or unhealthy conditions found during the inspection, then proper federal, state or local agencies will be notified.
In addition to inspections, all AKC Inspectors have a strong desire to educate and help breeders. Recently, a long-time breeder contacted the AKC Government Relations Department (GR) regarding pending legislation in their state. The breeder had just been inspected by the AKC and enthusiastically relayed to GR how they were incorporating into their breeding program the many helpful tips and recommendations that they had received from their Inspector. This breeder knew the thoroughness with which an AKC inspection is conducted and they took great pride in the positive report they received.
AKC Inspectors also take great pride in their work and understand the vital role they perform for the AKC. They provide helpful advice, suggestions, and information about the numerous beneficial programs AKC offers—all as a way to help breeders raise quality puppies and to maintain the integrity of the AKC registry.
Tell your legislators about this program! Print this one-page flier to distribute to public officials to show that the AKC takes a stand when it comes to responsible dog ownership and care.