Examples of American Kennel Club dog breeders include Belcarra Labradors of California, Blazen Papillons of Texas and Marma Farms of Georgia. The AKC maintains a database of AKC Breeders of Merit, recognizing breeders who meet certain criteria and demonstrate a commitment to AKC standards. The AKC database is searchable by name and state, and registered breeders also often share their status as Breeders of Merit on their websites.
Other AKC Breeders of Merit include SandStorm Kennels, which specializes in Chinese cresteds and weimaraners, and Stuarthome Cavaliers of Michigan. To become a Breeder of Merit, a dog breeder must be involved with AKC activities for a minimum of five years, earn AKC titles on at least four dogs, join an AKC club and ensure that the dogs receive thorough health screenings. In addition, the breeder must register all of puppies with the AKC.
To find a responsible breeder, the AKC recommends utilizing the search tools on the club's website or visiting dog shows to meet breeders in person. The prospective dog owner should find an experienced breeder with whom the owner feels comfortable, and should visit the breeder's kennel and observe that the dogs are healthy and well cared for. The buyer should research the breed and inquire about any common health concerns. In addition, a responsible breeder should supply paperwork documenting the animal's pedigree.