Breeder Code of Ethics

At Good Dog, we’re on a mission to put an end to inhumane, unethical, and deceptive practices by bringing transparency and accountability to the system through an online community committed to responsible practices that prioritize the health and well-being of all dogs.

Breeders in Our Community

Each breeder in our community is held accountable to a set of standards created in collaboration with our breeder, veterinary, and academic advisors. We know that there is no, and may never be, one consensus about how best to take care of and raise our dogs. However, membership in our community represents a breeder’s commitment to provide for the health and well-being of their dogs, honest communication with their customers and follow responsible breeding practices. Membership is not an endorsement by any one member of the practices of any other member, but rather a commitment to bring transparency and accountability to their practices in order to promote, and enhance, the welfare of their dogs.

Breeding and Care

All participating breeders agree to:

  1. Ensure that every litter is the result of conscientious planning, including consideration of parents' temperament and physical well-being, clearances for hereditary diseases, pedigree and parentage.
  2. Provide the proper care and a clean, safe environment for all dogs on the premises, which includes at a minimum:
    • Veterinary care for dogs when sick or injured
    • Indoor spaces with protection from extreme temperatures
    • Outdoor access when temperatures are safe for specific breed of dog
    • Appropriate daily food and water (in accordance with breed, age, and size)
    • Regular interaction, exercise, socialization, and other enrichment (e.g. toys)
    • If housed in kennels:
      • Appropriate living space with no wire flooring
      • Cleaned at least daily with comfortable, padded spaces for sleeping
      • Access to toys and other enrichment items
  3. Provide the proper care and a clean, safe environment for a female and her litter, which includes the following (in addition to all the above):
    • A quiet, non-stressful environment for nursing/whelping separate from other dogs
    • Enough space to move around alongside, and not on top of, puppies
    • Whelping area should be cleaned more frequently due to the extra waste from the puppies
  4. Not breed a female before she is physically and mentally mature (which depends on breed), and then only if she is in excellent health and has been approved for breeding by a licensed veterinarian.
  5. Not breed a female beyond the appropriate age for her breed or as is advised by a licensed veterinarian.
  6. Not allow a female to rear more than the appropriate number of litters in her lifetime (which is generally no more than 4 to 6 litters).
  7. Ensure all puppies are seen by a licensed veterinarian as a part of a full veterinary exam with a clean bill of health (unless an exemption is applicable), are given appropriate shots and are dewormed or have a negative fecal exam before going to a new home.
  8. Comply with all applicable federal, state, and local laws and regulations.

Placing Dogs with New Owners

All participating breeders agree to:

  1. Keep puppies for as long as it takes to make sure they are placed in suitable homes.
  2. Not allow any puppy to leave for its new home before an age appropriate for its breed (which is generally 8 weeks).
  3. Screen all prospective owners to determine their suitability and motives for acquiring a dog by interviewing owners with specific questions.
  4. Disclose any known health issues of a dog before it goes to a new home.
  5. Never misrepresent the characteristics of a breed or a dog.
  6. Make sure that each dog, upon release to its new owners, is accompanied by the following:
    • Health certificate including vaccination and deworming dates and all prior health records (unless an exemption is applicable)
    • A sales contract (preferable)
    • A health guarantee (preferable)
    • National registry registration documentation (if applicable)
    • Resources regarding breed-specific health problems and expectations (preferable)
  7. Maintain detailed records of each litter they breed.
  8. Refrain from selling, consigning or transferring dogs to pet dealers, pet stores, pet brokers, pet wholesalers, contest sponsors or to individuals with known or suspected intention to resell.
  9. Be available to answer questions and offer guidance to new owner for the entire lifespan of the dog.
  10. Regardless of the reason or circumstances, take the dog back or help in rehoming it if the new owner is no longer able to keep the dog.
  11. Encourage new owners to abide by our Dog Parent Code of Ethics.