During my ongoing education on puppy mills the question of certifications and what potential owners should be on the lookout for continues to come up.
So, let’s look at Zoey’s certifications. She has one: She is APRI registered. I had never heard of APRI before the upscale boutique we bought her from told me how meaningful it was and how happy we should be that she had it. At that point, I figured it must be fabulous, since I wasn’t yet aware of the owner’s true modus operand.
After we brought Zoey home and she became so desperately ill, I talked to the trainer who worked with Abby when she was a pup. She was horrified when I told her Zoey was only APRI registered, indicating that this one marker was not enough. So, I did additional investigating online and found this from the Denver 7 Channel News:
Q: Is there a different between registry with the American Kennel Club (AKC) and other registries like America’s Pet registry (APRI), Continental pet Club (CKC), American Canine Registry (ACR)?
A: These organizations (and others) are pet registries. One big difference between pet registries and the AKC is that pet registries have “voluntary compliance” with breeding standards. DNA testing is not required, so a breeder can mate a female with several males but list only one sire. In fact, the breeder can list any male dog, even if he was not mated to the female because there’s no proof required. Lax rules and lack of accountability can lead to poor quality dogs, congenital defects and dogs that are not in fact purebreds. Many of the so-called “designer dogs” such as Labradoodles (Labrador/poodle crosses) and Puggles (Pug/Beagle crosses) can be registered with the pet registries. These dogs cannot be registered with the AKC because they are not purebred breeds.
Pet registries are referred to as “breeder friendly” because of the lack of accountability required. Hobby breeders, backyard breeders and puppy mills use pet registries and sometimes register the same dog under different names with different registries. Reputable breeders who truly care about breed standards and healthy dogs with good temperaments will register their dogs with the AKC only. The AKC will not allow multiple registrations.
The Coton de Tulear, Zoey’s breed, is not yet in the AKC. That said, the breed standard is white and Zoey is black and white. After speaking with a few knowledgeable people in the dog community, it’s very likely that Zoey’s father was actually a mix of a white Coton and a black Havenese.
Please let it be known that I could really care less what breed my dog is. I adopted my other dog, Abby, from the Fort Smith Humane Society. For the longest time we had no clue what she was until learned about the concept of pet DNA testing from Jeff Lewis on the Bravo show “Flipping Out.” We thereupon swabbed Abby’s mouth to get a sample, sent it to a lab for testing and discovered roughly a month later that she’s a Shih-Tzu/Maltese mix.
The Collie we had when I was growing up was of a champion bloodline and AKC registered but I’m pretty sure we didn’t follow up on her registry. So, I am actually 0-3. The odds of me ever caring about my dog’s registration are little to none but for those of you who do care, I hope you found the above info helpful