The woman who last week was the most recent example of someone keeping dozens of animals in unsanitary conditions lives in our neighborhood, and we blame the American Kennel Club for the proliferation of reprehensible breeders who keep dogs in that same manner. The organization that allegedly represents the highest of canine standards clearly doesn't care what quality dogs you produce so long as the "papers" have been paid for.
These kinds of breeders will never go away as long as dogs can be sold for several hundred dollars. But why so much for an ignorantly bred backyard animal? Because it is registered and purebred, according to the AKC. Ignorant buyers assume this implies some type of quality or standards, though nothing could be further from the truth. If the AKC refused to register mass-produced litters, operators would go out of business because unregistered dogs aren't economically worthwhile to breed, and many breeders are interested only in the money.
It is time this country's primary dog registrar accepts its responsibility and refuses to validate dogs bred in this way. If they want to resume being more than dues-collectors and name-takers, the AKC has to enforce its existing rules or write new ones but it must stop peddling papers to despicable dog manufacturers!
Jeff and Jackie Roberts, Aiken, S.C.