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National Code of Practice of Responsible Dog Ownership

April 2020


Each member, upon being elected or re elected to membership of a Member Body of the ANKC Ltd shall be bound by the National Code of Practice subject to each States relevant legislation. (Amended 10/19, 6.1)


1. A member shall not knowingly or recklessly misrepresent the ANKC Ltd or the member’s Member Body.

2. A member shall not engage in any behaviour that is contrary to the standards accepted by the community.

3. A member shall display good sportsmanship and conduct at all times so as to reflect credit upon themselves, the ANKC Ltd and the member’s Member Body.

4. Members shall constantly strive to improve their knowledge of their chosen breed or breeds, and their knowledge of the requirements for the care, welfare and betterment of dogs.

5. Members shall ensure that all dogs under their control are properly controlled, housed, fed, watered, exercised and receive veterinary care as required.

6. A member who leaves a dog owned by them in the care of another person shall remain ultimately responsible for that dog.

7. A member shall take all appropriate lawful measures to assist a dog in distress.

8. A member shall positively enhance the reputation of dog breeders and owners by ensuring that dogs owned by the member are not a danger or nuisance to the community.

9. A member shall not participate in nor support any activity in that involves cruelty or damage to animals, excluding legal hunting activities.

10. A member shall not dispose of dogs owned or bred by the member to a pound or animal refuge. Breed Rescue Clubs run by ANKC Ltd members are exempt. (Amended EM#180, 04/20.  Effective 01/07/20)


11. A member shall breed primarily for the purpose of improving the quality and/or working ability of the breed in accordance with the breed standard, and not specifically for the pet or commercial market.

12. A member shall not breed with a bitch unless the bitch has reached adequate maturity for that breed as determined by the member’s Member Body.  Refer ANKC Regulations Part 6 Clause 8.2.

13. A member shall not breed a bitch (except under extenuating circumstances) causing it to whelp more than twice in eighteen months without the prior approval of the member’s Member Body.

14. A member shall not breed a bitch (except under extenuating circumstances) causing it to whelp more than six times without prior veterinary certification of fitness for further breeding, and without prior approval of the member’s Member Body.

15. A member shall not breed a bitch which is eight years of age and over unless it complies with ANKC Regulations Part 6 Clause 8.3.

16. A member shall not permit any of that member’s pure bred dogs to be mated to a dog of a different breed, to a cross bred dog, to an unregistered dog of the same breed, or to a dog not on the ANKC Ltd Main Register without the prior approval of the member’s Member Body. (Amended 10/19, 6.1)

17. A member shall take responsible action to reduce the incidence of hereditary diseases in accordance with the ANKC Ltd Code of Practice for Hereditary Diseases.

18. A member shall not, within Australia, sell or otherwise transfer from that member’s care any puppy under eight [8] weeks of age without the approval of the member’s Member Body.

19. A member exporting a puppy must comply with all current requirements of the Australian Department of Agriculture. (10/15)

20. A member shall not knowingly sell a dog to any person residing in an overseas country known to be involved in the utilisation of dogs for the meat trade without first satisfying the member’s Member Body that the purchaser is a member of an ANKC Ltd recognised canine controlling body in the overseas country. The member and purchaser must further acknowledge in writing to the member’s Member Body that the intention of the sale is for the improvement of the quality of that breed in the overseas country, and not for any other purpose.

21. A member shall ensure that persons acquiring dogs from that member understand the requirements for the care, welfare and responsible ownership of the dog, and that they have the time and facilities, e.g. adequate fences, sufficient room and proper shelter, to fulfil their responsibilities.

22. A breeder shall be expected to maintain reasonable contact with the purchasers of dogs from that breeder and to offer continued advice and reasonable assistance.

23.    A member shall register all puppies bred by that member that are living at the date of registration. Such registration must include all puppies from the litter on the one litter registration application form and must be applied for within eighteen [18] months of the date of whelping or prior to sale or rehoming.  (06/08) (10/16)

24. A member shall provide to all recipients of dogs sold or otherwise disposed of by that member, written details of: (Amended 10/19, 6.1)

.1 The breed characteristics;

.2 Current vaccination certificate signed by a veterinary surgeon evidencing that the dog has been immunised against Canine Distemper, Hepatitis and Parvo-virus;

.3 Microchip number verification and transfer

.4 Responsible dog ownership information; and

.5 All documentation required by the member’s Member Body, including but not limited to –

(i) A written receipt clearly stating whether the dog was sold on main or limited

(ii) Any other conditions of sale and/or agreements

25. A member shall not incorrectly describe nor knowingly misrepresent the characteristics of a breed.

26. A member shall ensure that all dogs sold or disposed of by that member are in the best possible state of health. Where a dog with a health issue or disability is disposed of the member must obtain from the recipient written and signed acknowledgement of the condition of the dog.

27. A member shall not:

.1 Sell or dispose of a dog to a commercial pet wholesaler or retail pet shop. (10/15)

.2 Allow a dog owned by that member to be given as a prize or donation or to be auctioned.


28. A member shall not conduct or permit mother / son, father / daughter or brother / sister matings. The member is fully aware that puppies as a result of such matings will not be registered without first gaining approval from the Member Body for the mating for scientifically proven welfare or veterinary reasons. (Added EAP 07/11)

29. A member who provides or makes available a dog for use in a film, advertisement, promotion, or any media or public display must ensure that:

.1 The dog is portrayed in a manner consistent with its breed characteristics and temperament as described in the Standard for that breed; and

.2 The dog is presented in a manner that is unlikely to create a negative reaction to dogs generally or that breed in particular and that if there is any likelihood of a negative impression, this is at the same time corrected through the development of a story line that presents the dog or breed in a balanced manner.

30. A member shall not indulge in false or misleading advertising relating to the conformation, characteristics or performance of that member’s dog.

31. A member shall not misrepresent nor malign the conformation, characteristics or performance of another member’s dog.

32. It is mandatory for an ANKC Ltd Member Body Membership Number to be displayed on any advertisement for dogs whatever the media and all members must include the following wording in their advertisements:

“Please contact Dogs [insert State/Territory] on email: [insert email address] to verify my membership”.  (Amended 10/17, 6.1)

33. A member shall not use spiked or electronic collars for the purposes of training. (Added 10/18, 6.17.1)


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