About Us    Available Puppies    Breed Information    Puppy Request Form    Choosing A Puppy    Puppy Picture Gallery

Our Boys    Our Girls    FAQ'S    Grooming    Care    Training    Medical    References    Congratulations 


Limited Registration

 What is Limited Registration?

AKC limited registration is a type of registration that "limits" a dog's ability to produce AKC registered puppies.  This type of registration, along with a spay/neuter contract, is often used by breeders to assure that a particular dog is not used for breeding.   A dog with AKC limited registration is still AKC registered but no litters produced by that dog are eligible for AKC registration. 

A dog with limited registration is eligible to compete in any  class at an AKC-licensed dog show, trial or event (including obedience, agility, tracking, field trials and hunt tests) EXCEPT for breed competition (conformation classes).

Why would a breeder choose limited registration for a particular puppy?

There are a number of sound reasons for selling puppies with limited registration.  First and foremost of these reasons is to prevent my puppies from being purchased and used for breeding in a puppy-mill.  Puppy brokers will pay more for puppies that come from champion parents and/or championship pedigrees, so puppy mill operators are always interested in purchasing quality puppies.  Since all of my dogs have championship pedigrees or are champions themselves, my puppies are at risk for a lifetime of abuse and neglect in a puppy mill if I do not take adequate measures to protect each dog I sell.  (For more information on puppy mills, check out my FAQ's page.)

Placing my pet puppies with limited registration makes my puppies less appealing to puppy mills, back-yard breeders and other irresponsible owners that might breed their dog without thought to breed type, health or temperament.  I work very hard and have spent years trying to ensure that the puppies I produce are happy, healthy, quality examples of the Cocker Spaniel breed.  It only makes sense that I would take any and all necessary steps to ensure that someone else doesn't use one of my dogs to produce inferior animals.  (You must keep in mind that each parent provides 50% of the genetic material for each puppy.  No matter how well-bred one parent is, if the other parent carries serious health or structural faults, the puppies produced from breeding these 2 animals would not only be at risk for inheriting and exhibiting the faults of the poorly bred parent, but even those that didn't exhibit the faults of the inferior parent would carry those defective genes and could pass them to subsequent  generations.)

Which leads to my next reason for using limited registration when selling my puppies.  Limited registration helps prevent ANY irresponsible breeder from using one of my puppies in a breeding program that does not do appropriate health testing and in which improving the breed is not the purpose of their involvement with the breed.  This includes puppy mill owners, back-yard breeders and others that want to supplement their income with puppy sales or just want the kids to see a "life experience".   While back-yard breeders and pet owners that produce 1 or 2 litters may not neglect or abuse their dogs as often as puppy mills, most of these "breeders" are not responsible in their breeding practices.

Please don't misunderstand me here - I do not believe that show people are the only ones that should be allowed to breed their dogs.  I believe that anyone should have the right to breed their dog but that they should not do so without appropriate health testing for the breed, without considerable knowledge of the health risks known to affect that particular breed and a sound, working knowledge of the breed standard.  This is the minimum foundation of knowledge from which each breeding should be planned and executed.   Additionally, I feel that all breeders should have some basic veterinary skills to allow them to identify and deal with breeding, whelping and puppy care emergencies and I also believe that anyone that breeds their dogs must:

  1. Be willing to accept responsibility for each puppy for its lifetime in case the new owner cannot keep it.
  2. Have a solid foundation of information on animal care and husbandry so that they will be able to help new owners with training, care and upkeep of the puppy they purchase.
  3. Be discriminating in their placement of the puppies they produce.  In other words, all puppies should be placed with limited registration on spay and neuter contracts unless the breeder is absolutely positive that the new owner shares the same sense of responsibility and commitment to a responsible breeding philosophy as the litter owner. 

 Sorry for the little side trip up above there, but I wanted to make myself clear.  Now that we've gotten that taken care of, let's get back to my reasons for using limited registration.  As I was saying, while I  strive to produce puppies that are healthy and meet the breed standard, other (unethical) breeders could use one of my dogs to produce puppies that would reflect poorly on my kennel and bloodlines.   The limited registration option helps me prevent the indiscriminant breeding of dogs from my kennel.  This, in turn, helps to assure that my name, my kennel name and my dogs' bloodlines are not associated with poor breeding practices or inferior animals.  This is, of course, in addition to protecting my puppies and potential offspring of my puppies from puppy mills.  But, hold on to your hats, there's even more good news!  For the icing on the cake, limited registration also helps to reduce the number of poor quality, genetically unsound puppies that are sold to the unsuspecting public and that weaken the breed as a whole. 

As you should be able to see from the information above, limited registration is a tool that responsible breeders can use to improve the lives of the animals they produce.  By taking advantage of this form of registration I can be sure that my puppies will not end up as the next generation of breeding stock for an irresponsible breeder.  I can rest easy knowing that the puppies I sell are safe and snug in their new homes with families that value them for their  loving companionship

Please understand that if you have contacted me to purchase a pet dog and I told you the dog would have limited registration, this does NOT mean that I think YOU are a puppy-mill owner or a bad person!  If I have told you that the puppy you want will have limited registration, I have not picked you out with the intent to discriminate against you and I am not somehow prejudiced against you in particular.  I insist that ALL pet dogs have limited registration and that decision rarely has anything to do with the person that is asking to purchase the puppy.  I'm just doing what I think is necessary to assure that my puppies go to the best possible homes.

The following is an excerpt from the AKC Rules and Regulations on Registration of Dogs.
Limited Registration means that the dog is registered but no litters produced by that dog are eligible for registration.

Chapter 3, Section 4A of the AKC's Rules Applying to Registration and Discipline states the following: "Limited Registration may be requested for a dog when application for individual registration of the dog is submitted, provided the application, together with a request for such limitation, is filed by the owner(s) of the litter at birth.

No offspring of a dog for which Limited Registration has been granted is eligible for registration. Each registration certificate for such dog shall carry notice of the limitation, and the limitation shall continue, regardless of any change of ownership, unless and until the owner(s) of the litter at birth shall apply to AKC for removal of the limitation."

A dog registered with an AKC Limited Registration shall be ineligible to be entered in a breed competition in a licensed or member dog show. It is eligible, however, to be entered in any other licensed or member event. These events include: Obedience, Tracking, Field Trials, Hunting Tests, Herding, Lure Coursing, Agility and Earthdog.

Limited Registration is determined by the litter owner(s). The litter owner(s) check the Limited box on the AKC Dog Registration Application.

Limited Registration certificates are white with an orange border; the Full Registration certificate is white with a purple border.

What if I am possibly interested in showing or breeding my puppy, but I am not sure?
Can I still buy my puppy as a pet and decide to show the dog later?

In certain situations, a puppy may be sold with limited registration, but the new owner and I may have discussed and agreed to the possibility of said dog being a possible candidate for future use as a breeding and/or show dog.  If such is the case and there is an established agreement (show/breeding contract) for such use of the dog in question; AND the new owner and I have agreed that said dog does indeed have the potential to be shown and/or bred; AND we have agreed to the need to remove a limited registration designation from said dog's registration certificate, then AKC does allow me to file a form that will remove a dog's limited registration status.  

It must be understood, however, that I will only remove a dog's limited registration status if there is a signed show and breeding contract in place.  These contracts generally require that a serious attempt will be made to show and title said dog in an AKC event (conformation, obedience, agility, hunting tests, etc.) and that the dog will not be bred until it has passed applicable health testing (hips and eyes).  My contracts also require responsible placement of puppies produced - spay/neuter contracts unless the puppies are going to established show homes that have agreed to the same show/health and breeding guidelines that were previously established for the original dog purchased from Sandcastle Kennels.

If you have any questions or would like more information about our Cocker Spaniels,
E-MAIL ME.    Thanks,


Copyright Sandcastle Kennels 2004

Last revised: December 16, 2005