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Keep Up With the Times, AKC!

Written by PETA | December 4, 2008

There’s been a lot of good news for doggie kind lately. First, our canine friends in the U.K. got a break when the (British) Kennel Club announced that it would be reviewing and revising breeding standards for its “recognized” breeds. The first step was to inform breeders of Pekinese dogs that it was no longer acceptable to breed dogs with such flat faces because (duh) it’s difficult for them to breathe through their poor little squished-up noses.

Then, the American Veterinary Medical Association (AVMA) recently voted to revise its policy on tail-docking and ear-cropping to say that it definitely opposes these unnecessary cosmetic procedures—and that it encourages their elimination from breed standards! (Dear breeders: Please stop lopping off pieces of your dogs to make them “prettier.” Love, the AVMA.)


With these precedents in mind, PETA has written a letter to the American Kennel Club (AKC) asking it to adopt some seriously long-overdue guidelines to reduce the discomfort, diseases, and disorders that plague inbred—sorry, purebred—dogs.

Crippling hip dysplasia, blindness, deafness, heart defects, skin problems, and epilepsy: These can all be results of the genetic manipulation and inbreeding that breeders rely on to achieve “desired” traits such as perky ears or short legs. If the folks at the AKC really cared about dogs, they’d want to prevent them from being ill or in pain, right? … right?

Of course, if the AKC really cared about dogs, they wouldn’t be encouraging people to add to the dog and cat overpopulation crisis in the first place—but that’s another story.

You can check out our letter to the AKC here—hopefully, there will be better times ahead for doggies here and abroad.

Written by Amanda Schinke

Commenting is closed.
  • Cooper says:

    This is sooo funny I loved it so true.

  • joanna says:

    Instead of complaining about the breed clubs AKC its possible to join them attend their meetings and educate and develop support for natural ears and tails from within the membership. Same thing PETA has done to corporations and the share holder meetings.

  • SavethePits says:

    Spaying and neutering is a much more invasive dangerous procedure and some could argue completely unnecessary. Medical decision should be mae between an owner and their particular vet.

  • Kim Bogue says:

    I appreciate the Goals of most of PETA’s stances However I have to say often your tacitics do more harm to the Cause than help. I would be a huge advocate for requiring not only Breeding stock to be evaluated and licensed but also the Breeders themselves. We have failed to focus on requiring DVM certifications and State Licensing for Breeding operations. I own a Broodmare and a Colt breeding stock. I would LOVE to have a DVM certify them as High quality worthy stock for reproduction. this would not only provide me with a ‘Quality breeders reputation’ but increase the value of those animals I produce.A Breeders Certification would also attest to my ability to practice sound animal husbandry methods thus a testiment to their health. What could move this to the forefront is to focus on the Financial benefits to DVM’s and The State. Cert’s Licensing of both Breeder animal and Annual Renewal fees. you have to focus on Money. The incease in price a licensed Breeder can charge due to ‘value added’ Quality assurances Revenues for the State and Income for the DVM’s. Fines for Non compliance should be High to the Breeder thus detering the ‘hobbiests’.who’s animals end up at shelters or euthanized or sent overseas as food or neglected to death. Just as it makes more sense to reduce Unwanted pregnancies to reduce or eliminate the pracitce of abortion in Humans reducing or elimiating Unwanted animals will resolve overpopulation in animals. As for Veganism I’m about as likely to convert to that as I would become an Evangelical Christian Not Gonna happen. My food tastes and requirements are Dictated by my biology I have the digestive system of an Omnivore no Cecum.

  • Jenn says:

    I would have to second what Joanna said in that PETA ought to be sending the letter out to the breed clubs as well. See if you can work with the clubs to make things better for the dogs. Not all breed club members are good and not all are bad but in my experience I have shown with or seen members breed for no other reason than “oh I want another to show” or “I want to be the first to have a Ch.BISBISS ” fill in the blank uncropped smooth different color etc or “oh cute puppies congrats!” like stage mothers envying eath other …there seems to be a trend towards NOT gathering data through OFACERF or even bothering to use the services if one’s vet determines the dog or bitch to be “healthy”. And do not kid yourselves there are show breeders who breed on the scale of small puppy millers only their animals live in some form of “indoors” rather than rabbit hutches and they make a nice income doing it…there is still way to much breeding going on for no purpose beyond what I stated earlier. It’s very sad and I’ve chosen never to breed or show again. Not when fellow “breeders” can’t seem to wrap their heads around a simple Mendel square for color let alone the health problems seen. Good luck with this and those myself included who still love purebreds don’t forget to give donations to your local rescue group this holiday season…they are very much in need.

  • kelly says:

    Breed club members are even WORSE scumbags. First of all they profit from puppy mill blood money from the AKC to spend on their “hobby.” Puppy mill money pays for dog shows breed club activities etc etc Is that ethical? And Mr Puppy Mill Mr HUNTE CORPORATION Andrew Hunte the most infamous puppy mill broker in the US belongs to the German Shepherd National Breed Club!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! That is the type of human garbage that belongs to National Breed Clubs. Is it any wonder that AKC breeders are considered a joke by the bulk of the population?

  • joanna says:

    If you really want to talk to the people that write the breed standards in the USA you should contact the National breed clubs that use cropping or docking as part to their standard. National Doberman Dog Club etc. The National Breed clubs write and revise the breed standards. The AKC accepts those standards and uses them for the judging of the dogs. The national breed clubs are made of the actual breeders and fanciers of the breed that are most concerned with that breed and these are not puppy millers or commercial breeders. Those type of volume breeders don’t give one hit about health or temperment or anything other than volume. The breed clubs form committes to review changes and present issues to the membership at regular meetings. The members can vote for any of the changes they feel are important. In my breed club not a cropped or docked breed we have discussed the issue for dew claw removal. Historically the dew claws were removed. In the days when hunting was a major occupation for the dogs the arguement was the dew claw would get ripped off in the field it not removed on the puppies. As time has passed some of the best qualtiy dogs in the breed have had their dew claws left on. This has set an example to all the other breeders that its okay to show a champion show dog with wiskers untrimed and dew claws on..All Natural. Now we see more and more owners and handlers showing their dos natural. When discussed at the national breed club level there are still a variety of opinions but it is at least acceptable for any owner or breeder to leave the dew claws on. There is no language in the standardto say the dew claws should be off. It’s also necessary for the public to see more of the breeds that have been cropped and docked historically in their natural ears and tails. Most people don’t even know what a natural Rottweiller Doberman Boxer dog looks like. If people see them in their natural state on TV around town and in magazines they will begin to expect the dogs to look natural. Consummers are also part of the transition for the breeds to considered normal in their natural ears and tails.

  • Amber Falobas says:

    I have to say I don’t support the AKC. But I do have to say… both of my dogs are purebreds…. They were not bred that I am aware of i don’t know. i rescued my chihuahua off the streets of Johnson County. she was about 1 week old and left to die. Her name is Cheewa. And my german shepard she was tied to a pole and left to die. Our friend told us about her and he brought her to us and she’s very healthy now and cute! her name is Miekepronounced like MeeKa It’s german. Michelle. How about people RESCUE purebred dogs’ instead of breed them?? Or how bout people own mutts? Honestly I love mutts so much better. Even though I love Cheewa and Mieke. My cousin has a terrier dalmation beagle sort of mix…and he is AMAZING!

  • Mike Quinoa says:

    Sometimes humour is the best way to deliver a serious message. One of PETA’s best.

  • Leigh says:

    I live in South Africa a developing country mind you and as long as i remember the cropping of ears has not been permitted and recently tail docking is no longer permitted. I can’t believe a socalled “developed” country can continue these barbaric practices.

  • Rex's Mom says:

    I love watching Animal Planet “cop” shows when they show a Rottweiller or a Doberman that still have their tails and ears unaltered or cut. All dogs should have a tail unless they are born without one but I can’t think of any breed that doesn’t have a tail at birth except maybe an Old English Sheep Dog. But I could be wrong. Stop cropping and docking!

  • kelly says:

    The AKC does not care one whit for dogs. They care about BREEDER INCOME. After all this is the AKC who makes their $$ registering puppy mill puppies!! httpwww.bogartsdaddy.comBouvierBouvPagesarticleinquirepuppymillsAKC.htm Most of these AKC breeders do their own tail docking and ear cropping no vet and using no pain medication.