Continental Kennel Club Answers The Critics
Copyright © Continental Kennel Club 2009
Continental Kennel Club is an international registry with club members
and dogs registered in all 50 states and 30 foreign countries. Since 1991,
Continental Kennel Club has served the dog world as one of the leading canine
registries in the world and used the internet to promote, advertise, and
publicize its services and programs for the dog world. And while the internet
is a wonderful medium for the free exchange of ideas all over the world,
it can also be used to spread rumor and false information about people,
businesses, and organizations. In the past there has been some misinformation
circulated on the internet concerning CKC which has led to some common misconceptions
about the Continental Kennel Club. In this document we have attempted to
answer those misconceptions as a series of frequently asked questions. For
more information about CKC, refer to our official website at www.ckcusa.com,
or call us at 1-800-952-3376.
Does Continental Kennel Club condone puppy mills?
Continental Kennel Club does not condone or promote “puppy mills”.
The majority of CKC registrations come from individuals, not large commercial
breeding operations. In 2006, two percent of our members were registered
as kennel owners (a kennel owner being someone that has ten or more dogs
registered). And, of those ordering applications for litters in 2006, only
10 percent were listed as kennels with CKC.
To deal with unscrupulous dog owners, CKC maintains a strict set of Registration
Rules that all members are expected to adhere to and abide by, whether they
be individual dog owners, breeders, or kennel owners. CKC enforces its registration
rules, policies and procedures among all of its membership through program
checks, customer feedback, and a formal complaint process. In dealing with
a complaint, CKC employs a wide latitude of investigative tools, including
on-site inspections, professional tests, and document-gathering to determine
the merits of a reported abuse of the registry.
Occasionally, we receive complaints about breeders using the CKC registry
who are suspected of “puppy mill” practices. If such a documented
complaint is made concerning a CKC member, a file is opened, and we begin
an investigation immediately. If the breeder is found to be unethical in
their breeding practices or care of their dogs, their club member privileges
will be suspended and/or revoked according to Rule 6b of the Continental
Kennel Club Registration Rules. Rule 6b states: “CKC reserves the
right to refuse registration to any person or to revoke or suspend the club
member privileges of any member who acts in a manner that CKC deems unethical,
fraudulent, or dishonest.” In addition, Rule 6a states: “CKC
reserves the right to refuse registration to any person or to revoke or
suspend the club member privileges of any member who is convicted of a crime
of cruelty to animals in any state, province, or country.”
Does CKC feel that registering a dog as purebred based on two signatures
and three photographs is an accurate means of registration?
We do register dogs that are known purebreds whose registration papers with
another registry have been lost, destroyed, or stolen. In these cases we
require 2 witnesses to verify the dog is purebred and 3 photos to verify
the dog is ‘of proper breed type’. According to CKC Registration
Rules, a dog must be purebred and ‘of proper breed type’ to
be registered as a purebred dog. If a dog is represented as purebred by
the owner and two other witnesses, its registration can still be challenged
if it is not ‘of proper breed type’. The pictures that are submitted
with these registration applications give us insight into whether a dog
is of proper breed type or not. And, CKC will deny registration for any
dog that is not of proper breed type no matter what type of verification
that is submitted for that dog. For example, registration for a dog may
be received on a puppy application with CKC registered parents or on a canine
application submitted with registration papers from another kennel club,
and still be denied registration if it comes to our attention that it is
not ‘of proper breed type’.
Unfortunately, for many purebred dogs, their paper trail has been lost
yet they are good examples of their breed and worthy of contributing to
the gene pool for their particular breed. Purebred dog gene pools are already
constricted enough by closed registries promoting primarily show-type breeding
with little regard for working ability. The CKC registry is an open registry,
and we have established adequate rules to safeguard the integrity of the
registry. CKC registration rules give us the right to investigate any member
suspected of registration infractions. CKC investigates every claim concerning
improper breed type or fraudulent information on registration papers. CKC
removes member privileges and purebred status for all dogs that have been
found to have incorrect or fraudulent information.
The majority of registrations that come into the registration office come
in with registered parents either in CKC or another kennel club such as
AKC or UKC. There are 3 ways to register a dog with Continental Kennel Club
depending on the history and background available for each dog. The most
common way dogs are registered with CKC is using preprinted puppy applications
that are issued for each litter requested by a breeder using CKC litter
services. We also register dogs on canine applications based on registration
information submitted from other registries. A list of accepted registries
can be found on our website at www.ckcusa.com.
By allowing purebred dogs to be registered with witnesses and pictures,
CKC is allowing a legitimate alternative for purebred dogs such as rescued
and abandoned dogs. Registration provides the new owners with proof of ownership,
a registration number to compete in CKC performance events, access to CKC
online services, and other valuable programs like the CKC Gold Club. In
addition, providing a legitimate means of registering purebred dogs eliminates
the practice in closed registries of registering dogs with false pedigree
information, thus bringing into question the accuracy of pedigree records
Does Continental Kennel Club register mixed breed dogs, and if
Yes, while 98% of the registry is made up of purebred dog registrations,
CKC does offer its registration services to owners of mixed breed dogs.
Owning a mixed breed dog is very common today, and CKC wants to be helpful
to those dog owners as well. Many mixed breed dogs are rescued from shelters
by responsible owners looking for a good canine companion to be part of
their home. CKC encourages registration of these dogs for a number of reasons.
Registration services provide proof of ownership, allow the dog to participate
in our performance events, allow CKC to record the accomplishments of the
owner and these canines, and make available all of the great services CKC
has to offer.
Continental Kennel Club applications and registration papers are designed
to ensure the public understands the different registration classes at CKC.
Puppy applications and registration certificates are stamped with ‘PUREBRED’
or ‘NONPUREBRED’ in bold print so that new owners know what
they are getting. Also, the abbreviation, ‘MISC’ appears in
front of any mixed breed description on the BREED field. In addition, the
CKC unique numbering system for miscellaneous breeds uses different prefixes
so that computer programs can prevent the recording of a mixed breed dog
Why does Continental Kennel Club allow registering dogs that have
limited breeding rights with other registries?
CKC Registration Rules allow for the registration of all purebred dogs.
Because CKC is an independent registry which operates by its own registration
rules, CKC does not record breeding status information from other registries.
And, as with other registry organizations, individual membership status
is conferred and maintained by adherence to the specific organization’s
registration rules, policies, and procedures.
In order to meet its membership needs CKC has established a Preferred Breeders
Program that does offer limited registrations privileges to those breeders
subscribing to the program. The CKC Preferred Breeder Program is an elite
program made up of breeders who subscribe to the highest ethical standards
in animal husbandry and canine care. CKC Preferred Breeders are committed
to improving their breeds.
If a CKC breeder doesn’t want the owners of puppies they
sell, to breed them, what should they do?
If a breeder is selling pet quality dogs and doesn’t want puppies
they sell or place to be used in a breeding program, they need a written
agreement/contract with each person they place a dog with or sell a dog
to. The agreement/contract should state explicitly that the puppy being
transferred is not to be bred or used for a breeding program. Continental
Kennel Club strongly advises that all breeders or individuals selling or
placing dogs do so with a written contract detailing the terms and conditions
of the sale. Contracts are made and enforced according to state laws not
registration organizations. Therefore, if a breeder wants to restrict the
breeding rights of a dog they sell or place, they should do so with a contract
which includes a mandatory spay/neuter clause. Or better yet have the dog
spayed or neutered before selling it.
Does CKC stand for Continental Kennel Club or Canadian Kennel Club?
The answer is both. In the United States, the initials CKC represent Continental
Kennel Club. Canadian Kennel Club doesn’t register dogs in the U.S.
and, therefore, has not established the use of the CKC mark in the U.S.
Likewise, Continental Kennel Club does not register dogs in Canada and has
no need for using the CKC mark in Canada.
Continental Kennel Club and Canadian Kennel Club resolved their differences
over the CKC trademark in 1998 and both agreed to work in ways which would
not confuse the general public in Canada or the U.S. Continental Kennel
Club has respected and adhered to the tenets of the settlement agreement,
although the agreement expired in December of 2003.
In addition, Continental Kennel Club and Canadian Kennel Club represent
themselves differently in their services, advertisements and on the World
Wide Web. Neither club wants to be identified by the services or products
of the other, so there is no problem with the respective kennel clubs or
the general public. Continental Kennel Club always uses its full trademarked
name ‘Continental Kennel Club’ in advertisements, registration
materials, and promotional material.