KC registration isn’t the be-all and end-all for pet parents, but it certainly has its perks.

Kennel Club membership is open to everybody — whether your canine companion is a pedigree pup or a mixed breed barker — and it comes with plenty of rewards and benefits.

A decision on whether to sign up ultimately boils down to the plans you have in store for your four-legged friend’s future and whether you feel the privileges of joining suit those plans.

The advantages include exclusive access to data, information and advice, a subscription for Kennel Club publications and reports, invitations/access to pedigree breed shows, access to KC competitions and events such as heelwork and canine sport, an affiliate loyalty card that offers a range of special offers, discounts and merchandise, and much more.

If you breed pedigree dogs, however, then Kennel Club registration is a must in order to receive their formal breed paperwork, which we’ll delve deeper into throughout this blog.


What is the Kennel Club?


The Kennel Club is the largest organisation in the UK devoted to dog health, welfare and training.

It is the all-seeing, all-hearing, all-singing, all-dancing, formal umbrella branch for devoted dog breeders and owners.

On their own website they claim that their main objective is to ‘ensure that dogs live healthy, happy lives’ with responsible and trusted pet parents.

Officials manage and oversee the ‘Assured Breeder Scheme’, which promotes responsible dog breeding throughout the United Kingdom and points potential puppy purchasers in the direction of reputable and certified breeders.

Their database holds detailed records of adult purebred dogs and lists of litters born to purebred parents, which helps them maintain and promote the highest breed standards while keeping track of the identity and traceability of a puppy’s ancestors, like a family tree for our furry family members.

As well as incorporating hereditary and health improvement campaigns for all recognised breeds, it also runs the world-famous Crufts Dog Show, which can only be entered by registered dogs and owners.


Does registration matter for your dog? What are the benefits?


KC registration can be hugely beneficial for both pets and pet parents, though acquiring such status isn’t always plain-sailing, or even possible.

Gaining Kennel Club kudos, and the assurance of that royal seal of puppy approval, is possible for all dogs, given they register more than 250,000 pedigree and crossbreed dogs every year.

Think of the Kennel Club as your best friend, the dependable one you’d turn to for solid guidance and advice when you need it the most.

It’s that one friend you’re proud to have in your life and the one that heightens your standing and reputation simply by association.

They can offer you unrivalled relationship advice about our four-legged friends, help you explore bloodlines/family trees, and they can get you access into all the exclusive invite-only clubs and events.

The benefits of owning a dog registered by The Kennel Club are: Your dog will display the characteristics of the breed, in both looks and temperament; you will be able to breed from your dog and register the puppies with The Kennel Club; your paw-some pet will be able to take part in shows and activities licensed by The Kennel Club (including Crufts); you can obtain a pedigree certificate for your dog — a unique record detailing your dog’s family tree; and you can see the results from health tests or screening schemes (if submitted to the KC) for every pedigree dog they register.

Having that connection and affiliation with a revered and reputable ‘governing body’ will also stand you out from the crowd of unassociated breeders when looking for loving new homes for your loveable litter of pups. Registered members really can reap the rewards!


What happens if my dog isn’t KC registered?


Well, first of all, non-registered dogs would miss out on all the previously mentioned pet perks, which could grow to become a pet peeve for pet parents.

Sometimes, however, it just might not be possible to register your four-legged companion with the Kennel Club, due to endorsements that have been set, enforcing certain restrictions, irrespective of whether they’re pedigree pups.

The KC can activate endorsements, instigated by the breeder and not the club itself, that prevent their progeny (offspring) from being eligible for Kennel Club registration.

This might be to protect the integrity and desirability of their breed line, with admission only bestowed on the puppies considered to be a good example of that specific breed.

Any endorsements placed by the breeder would prevent future litters — in relation to dogs with restrictions imposed — from being registered with the Kennel Club, which means they’ll be unable to breed registered pedigrees of their own.

It can also make life difficult, or impossible, to trace the lineage of pups that aren’t registered with the KC. That raises question marks over the dog’s health and heritage, because any historical defects can not be explored.

The Kennel Club, which also maintains high breeding standards, imposing strict rules on how many litters a mother can whelp, promotes DNA tests and screening schemes to help breeders maximise their chances of getting a healthy puppy.

Results of these tests can not be accessed if dogs are not registered with the Kennel Club, which can compromise the health and well-being of future litters from untracked pups.


How to join the Kennel Club


Kennel Club membership has a raft of advantages and opportunities for both pets and pet parents, which can be hugely beneficial if your precious pup is eligible for registration.

Their vast database can aid an owner’s understanding of specific breeds, provide them with an opportunity to explore their history and heritage, offer advice and guidance on health matters, assist with those wishing to breed, while advertising special events that members have exclusive access to.

All this ties in with the Kennel Club’s objective of ensuring our dogs live happy, healthy lives alongside responsible owners.

To join the Kennel Club, visit their website for more information.

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