The Kennel Club’s announcement on litter restrictions has been welcomed by the founder of a website that provides responsible dog breeders with the opportunity to showcase their dogs on the internet.
Mark Roach, managing director of Champdogs, hailed the news that, from 2012 the KC will normally register no more than four litters from any one bitch because of concerns that the current legal limit of six litters can potentially be detrimental to a bitch’s welfare, as a ‘positive step forward’.
And he called on the organisation to now turn the spotlight on the minimum age at which the KC registers a litter to a bitch.
“We are pleased that the Kennel Club has taken a positive step to help prevent the over breeding and exploitation of dogs,” said Mark. “This is not before time, however, and we at Champdogs have for many years applied a limit of four litters on our members.
“As the only recognised registrar of pedigree dogs in the UK, it is important that the KC sets a high standard and does not allow its registry to be exploited by puppy farmers and commercial breeders. This move will go some way to achieving that aim.
“We hope that the next step will be for the Kennel Club to review the minimum age at which they will register a litter to a bitch. We believe the blanket rule of 12 months for all breeds to be far too young. Ideally each breed should be considered differently as they all mature at different ages.”
Champdogs (www.champdogs.co.uk) was set up in 1999 and has almost 20,000 members. It positively promotes responsible and healthy dog breeding, and has strict conditions of membership to prevent puppy farmers and commercial breeders from using the firm’s facilities.
It also features a healthy discussion forum at www.champdogsforum.co.uk which runs alongside the main site.
Members on the forum have also welcomed the Kennel Club’s announcement.
Mark, who is based in Bingley, West Yorkshire, added: “The discussion on our forum indicates that the Kennel Club’s decision on litter restrictions is being hailed as a good move by responsible members of the dog world. We would now urge that attention is focused on the minimum age that the KC will register a litter to a bitch.
“At Champdogs, we apply a minimum age limit of 24 months at the date of whelping unless the relevant national breed club stipulates a different age.”