Code Of Recommended Practices

Introduction: As a breeder, exhibitor or owner, the Miniature Schnauzer enthusiast is often confronted with the decision and courses of action which can impact not only the health and well-being of his/her own dogs, but also the greater interests of the breed. To aid both the novice and the long-time fancier, the MSCC hereby sets forth these voluntary guidelines, representing a distillation of the personal codes of conduct and valid concerns of its members.

Article I - Breeding Considerations

Section 1 Prerequisites. The first and foremost consideration should always be the desire to preserve and advance the breed. Every breeding should be done selectively, incorporating:

  1. Careful analysis of the health and temperament of the sire and dam, including all possible research into their backgrounds.

  2. Careful study of canine anatomy, the breed standard, the breed's history and function and the basic principles of genetics.

  3. Ethical breeders should discuss openly and honestly the genetic and physical problems that have occurred in their lines. Stud dogs or brood bitches who produce offspring of consistently poor quality or with genetic problems known to be inherited in the breed are therefore of no value as breeding stock and should not be used again, except in breedings directed towards test mating or health research.

Section 2 Legal Requirements. Every breeder should familiarize themselves with and abide by their legal obligations under the By-Laws of the Canadian Kennel Club and the Animal Pedigree Act.

Section 3 Health And Husbandry. All dogs and bitches should receive routine health checks and/or be examined by a veterinarian before breeding to determine that they are healthy and mature enough for this purpose. In addition. to but not limited to, the following are recommended:

  1. All breeding stock should be examined annually by a qualified Veterinary Opthamologist. It is strongly recommended that examinations continue to age 6 or later, in order to detect late onset vision defects. This is especially important if the dogs in question leave descendants who are active in the gene pool.

  2. It is further recommended that all puppies receive a preliminary screening by a Veterinary Opthamologist prior to sale. This is to rule out the recurrance of congenital cataracts in the breed, as well as screen for other vision defects known to occur.

  3. Breeders are strongly urged to take advantage of other testing protocols as they become available - ie: dna testing for the myotonia congenita gene. Those who discover carrier animals should use them with utmost discretion, and only for the purposes of advancing their breeding programs by selecting clear offspring of quality to continue with.

  4. Breeding should be undertaken only when the breeder is in a posit

    ion to properly care for the bitch and litter. The breeder should ensure that recommended vaccination/deworming and proper socialization occurs during this period.

  5. Bitches should not be bred at their first season, preferably not before 18 months of age. Ideally, bitches should also be bred no more than once per year, and certainly, never more than twice in succession.

  6. Stud dogs should be bred selectively. The stud owner should discourage the individual who wants to breed the pet quality bitch or one unsuitable for the stud in question, and explain why this is necessary.

  7. The stud owner also should ascertain that the owner of the bitch has the required knowledge and the necessary facilities to care for the puppies for however long it may take to properly place them.

Article II - Selling And Sales Practices

Section 1 Contracts Problems resulting from sales and sales agreements are perhaps the greatest source of dissatisfaction and ill will in any breed. It's important that the seller be honest with both the buyer and him/herself.

  1. Every person who sells or places a dog should provide the new owner with a signed receipt, copies of all contracts and agreements, complete health records, proof of registration or eligibility for registration and an accurate pedigree.

  2. All agreements and stipulations should be recorded either in sales contracts or by a simple written exchange of mutual expectations. (The MSCC cannot adjudicate sales contracts or agreements.)

  3. Breeding arrangements are often confusing; they are best written and agreed upon by both seller and buyer. Such arrangements "in addition to" a selling price are usually made on an animal of such superior quality that it is necessary for the breeder/seller to maintain said animal as part of a well-planned ongoing breeding program.

  4. It is strongly advised that all puppies graded as "pets" be sold on spay/neuter contracts with an CKC "Non-Breeding Registration".

Section 3 Educational Responsibility The ethical breeder/seller should be honest in informing the prospective of the Miniature Schnauzer's training and grooming requirements. He/she should also disclose all breed health problems as well as each specific animal's physical, mental and nutritional needs and history.

Section 4. Conditions Of Sale Sales prices of dogs and puppies should not be dropped lower than what is customary in any locality, in order to expedite sales. This is not the practice of an ethical breeder.

  1. No puppy should be released or shipped to a new home without having received vaccinations in accordance with local veterinary recommendations. New owners should be provided with a three generation pedigree, complete inoculation records including booster due dates, name and address of the seller's veterinarian, and complete written instructions on diet and care.

  2. Any health guarantee should allow the buyer a specified period of time (usually three days to one week) within which to have the puppy examined by a veterinarian of their choice. Health guarantees should be comprehensive and meaningful, keeping in mind that many known breed defects are late-onset, with symptoms delayed for several years. Health guarantees should not force a buyer to surrender or euthanize a dog to receive compensation, unless it is clearly in the best interests of the animal, and all parties are agreeable.

  3. Ethical breeders do not consign dogs to pet stores, animal brokers (foreign or domestic) or commercial kennels.

  4. All breeders should be careful in the placement of their stock and should not knowingly deal with unethical persons. An ethical breeder should not sell to nor aid in procuring a Miniature Schnauzer for any person who he/she has reason to believe will not provide the proper care and environment, or who may use the dog in any fashion that is detrimental to the breed.

  5. Article III - Lifetime Responsibility

    Section 1. A responsible breeder should be willing to take back, rehabilitate (if possible) and re-place in a suitable home any dog he/she has bred and sold when the original purchaser is unable to keep the dog at any time during the dog's lifetime. If an animal is beyond rehabilitation, the breeder should be willing to either advise humane euthanasia or be responsible for such if the owner is unwilling or unable to do so.

Article IV - Advertising

Section 1. All advertising of puppies, adults or stud service should be factual and without misleading implications. Likewise, advertising of show wins and breeding records should be neither false nor misleading.

Article V - Sportsmanship

The term "sportsmanship" might be strictly defined as the art of playing fair; accepting defeat without complaint and victory without boastfulness. However, the following additional concepts of sportsmanship, when practiced, can enhance the pleasures of participation and the respect afforded the fancy,

Section 1. Courtesy: Every competitor should conduct him/herself at all times in such a manner as to reflect positively on the sport of breeding and showing purebred dogs.

Section 2. Rules: Every exhibitor has the responsiblity to learn and abide by the dog show rules of the governing body of the sport. The MSCC does not enforce dog show rules, but disciplinary action by a governing body may result in supplementary discipline by the Club.

This Code of Recommended Practices (Code of Ethics) was adopted, by ballot of the membership, on August 10, 2001. It replaces the Club's previous Code of Ethics.



Updated August 1, 2005 - All rights reserved