Ensuring that breeders of dogs operate responsibly and humanely is a key part of the Irish Kennel Club’s work.
All breeders who wish to have their pups registered with the Irish Kennel Club must agree to our code of ethics, which mandates strict standards among Irish breeders.
Excessive breeding is damaging for the health of mothers. For this reason, any bitch used for breeding must be over one year of age and below eight years of age. Bitches can whelp no more than four litters in her lifetime. If a breeder wants to exceed these conditions, for any reason, he or she must first seek and obtain permission to do so from the Irish Kennel Club.
Like all animals, pups and parents should be kept humanely, with warm shelter and adequate space in which to exercise. Housing and play areas should be kept clean and free of potential hazards, while appropriate food should also be provided regularly.
Breeders should only sell dogs to owners that are aware of their responsibilities and obligations. They should also hand over all documentation relevant to a pup’s parentage, registration and health background.