Why join the Scheme FAQs

Why should responsible breeders join the Scheme?

Although many responsible dog breeders fulfil the Scheme's requirements, the KCABS ensures that the puppy buying public know which breeders are declaring to follow good practice. Breeders and the Kennel Club can work together to force irresponsible breeders, or puppy farmers, out of business as they will no longer be able trade on people's ignorance.

There are various accolades within the Scheme, to reward those more experienced breeders, who set exemplary standards to which others can aspire. The Kennel Club already has some very high profile breeders in the scheme, who are helping to lead the way.

Every single Kennel Club Assured Breeder will be inspected by the Kennel Club, a UKAS accredited certification body, in order to ensure that the Scheme is recognised as the essential quality seal for puppy breeding and buying. UKAS accredited certification will be given to all breeders who have passed an Assessment Visit since 1st January 2014 and will be backdated for those breeders who have successfully passed an inspection in 2013.

I breed my dogs infrequently, is the Scheme for me?

The majority of people who register their dogs with the Kennel Club do not breed large numbers of litters. 75 per cent of people who register litters with the Kennel Club breed only one litter per year, or less. However, we need all breeders, large or small, to be part of the Scheme - even if you only ever sell one or two puppies outside of your family in a lifetime. Irresponsible breeders and puppy farmers may use the excuse that they breed infrequently and so do not need the Scheme  - but if all of those people who are genuinely in this position sign up then disingenuous breeders will no longer be able to trade.

What experience is required to become an Assured Breeder?

Many Assured Breeders have a wealth of experience and will have bred for many years, and we do require breeders to have bred at least one litter prior to acceptance. However, if an applicant has not previously bred a litter but has received a successful Breeder Assessment Visit, the applicant’s yearly payment will be activated and the membership will remain in a Pending state until the applicant applies to register a litter that meets all the requirements of the Assured Breeder Scheme.  

The "Experience Accolade" denotes those breeders who have bred more than 5 litters.  However, the Scheme is open to any breeder, regardless of experience, providing they subscribe to and abide by good breeding practice and fulfil the health testing requirements.

Does the Kennel Club profit from the Scheme?

The Assured Breeder Scheme exists to improve the health and welfare of dogs; it is certainly not a way for the Kennel Club to make money. The money that the Kennel Club receives goes back into the print, marketing and administration costs of running the Scheme.

Further developments, such as the implementation of a network of Regional Breeder Assessors and our call to make the standards of the Scheme mandatory for all breeders by law, means that the Kennel Club is continually investing in developing the scheme further.

Assured Breeder Accolades - Breeders' Priorities Highlighted

The Assured Breeder Accolades give buyers information about where the breeders' priorities lie. For example, the 'Stud Book Accolade' indicates that the breeder has enjoyed some show ring success and is clearly breeding dogs that have a level of quality that are typical of the breed.

Additionally, every Assured Breeder is required to complete a 'Statement of Experience' which is made available to people requesting information. This provides an ideal opportunity to inform the public about additional health tests that they carry out and indeed any other information about themselves which is relevant.

Will there be improvement courses for Breeders?

We feel it is important to provide as much information about the breeders as possible and this was why the experience accolade was introduced, for those responsible dog breeders who have bred more than five litters. However, the KCAB accolades are designed to reward those breeders who are following exemplary standards.

As new scientific knowledge in the health and well-being of dogs increases every year, it is vital to keep up-to-date with these changes. That’s why the Kennel Club created the Kennel Club Academy with dog breeders in mind. The Kennel Club Academy is the home of accessible online education to build upon and expand your knowledge in the world of dogs where you learn at your own pace. There are different resources that will appeal to breeders, such as our Breeder Education learning resources that provide insightful films that cover topics from pre-breeding considerations right through to rearing, owning and caring for the health of your dogs. Sign up now for free to start your online learning now.

What is UKAS?

UKAS is the United Kingdom Accreditation Service, and is the sole national Accreditation Body recognised by government to assess against internationally agreed standards. Accreditation by UKAS demonstrates that the Kennel Club has been assessed against internationally recognised standards to demonstrate its competence, impartiality and performance capability.

What does UKAS accreditation mean?

The Kennel Club is recognised by the United Kingdom Accreditation Service (UKAS) as a certification and inspection body and, as such, is able to issue UKAS accredited certificates to members of its Assured Breeder Scheme. It is a level of quality assurance which means that the Kennel Club is checked and audited by UKAS in a similar way to the way that breeders are checked during a visit by the Kennel Club, to ensure that the rules of the Scheme are followed. This gives confidence to puppy buyers that ABS members are part of a robustly run Scheme where breeders are monitored to ensure that they adopt the good practice set out. As such puppy buyers will have the best possible chance of buying a well reared and healthy puppy.

What happens after membership has been accepted?

Once accepted for membership, Assured Breeders may use the Scheme literature and, if they use the Find a Puppy service, their litters will be highlighted to show that an Assured Breeder has posted them. Listings on the Find a Puppy Service are free of charge for Assured Breeders. Additionally, Assured Breeders who register more than four litters per year will still have access to the Kennel Club Find a Puppy service. Assured Breeders will also have prioritised access to supplementary information and advice from the Kennel Club Health and Breeder Services Department.

What should the Puppy Sales Wallets contain?

Assured Breeders must use a Puppy Sales Wallet for each puppy going to a new owner. The Puppy Sales Wallet is designed to contain the following:

  • Assured Breeder's contact details
  • Breed Club contact details
  • A copy of the contract of sale and written explanation of any endorsements
  • A new owner questionnaire
  • Written advice on socialisation, training, feeding, exercise, worming regime, immunisation measures as well as copies of any health or other relevant certificates.

So how much will I have to pay?

The annual payment fee costs £60. New applicants to the Scheme will initially pay £80 which is made up of a £20 joining fee and £60 annual fee.

More information



Related Topics

Dog Breeder Assured Breeders Assured Breeder Scheme
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