How a Breed Becomes a Breed

Once approved for a Miscellaneous certification number, the breed may be considered for recognition after three years minimum. At that time, a notice is published asking other breeders to come forward, and assuming all is in order and most are in favor, a new breed may be recognized. (An application must be submitted to Agriculture Canada by CKC to amend the articles of incorporation.) The biggest difference, though, is that there is no minimum requirement for the number of dogs or importers when the board considers recognition. While the U.S. has certain quantities that must be met, in Canada, that number can vary greatly.

Dogs Across the Pond

Before His Royal Highness Prince George of Cambridge arrived on the scene, Kate Middleton and Prince William were parents to Lupo, a beloved black Cocker Spaniel.

Of course, that breed has long been acknowledged by the U.K. Kennel Club, and there are 24 enthusiast Cocker Spaniel breed clubs around the country. But for new breeds hoping to forge their way to recognition in the U.K., there are specific application guidelines, the paperwork for which is ultimately reviewed by the Kennel Club General Committee.

The U.K. Kennel Club was founded before the U.S. and Canadian versions, back in 1873. Thus far, 210 breeds have been recognized in seven categories: Hounds, Gundogs, Terriers, Utility, Working, Pastoral and Toys.

The application must include names and addresses of U.K. owners and importers (and at least 20 — preferably unrelated — members of the breed should reside in the U.S.). Once again, copies of pedigrees going back three generations are required, as are recognition status and statistics in the country of origin. Details of any inherited conditions that are common to the breed must also be listed, plus a brief history with photographs and standards from the country of origin.

As a spokesperson for the organization says, the checks and balances in recognizing breeds are important “mainly for the health and welfare of the breed, sound development in the U.K. and making sure there is a good gene pool.”

Though in 2013 the Turkish Kangal Dog and Portuguese Pointer were recognized, in recent years no new breeds have been added. It goes to show that no matter what country you hail from, if you’re looking for easy recognition, you’re barking up the wrong tree.

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