Tuesday, January 22, 2008

Another AKC dog owner survey

The American Kennel Club, desperate to boost their revenues, is considering starting a new club for mutts (possibly named the All American Dog Club), so they can collect registration fees from even more dog owners. The club would give members access to a website that would include "fun features" like forums, contests, games and advice (the kind of stuff that's already available all over the web) a free initial vet visit, and a free trial period of pet insurance (so they can then sell you some of that, too!). In addition, the AKC says members would be able to earn Canine Good Citizenship certificates (already available to all dogs, whether registered with the AKC or not) and compete in AKC Rally-O and Agility.

They are currently running a survey of pet owners to gauge support for their desperate venture. You can take the survey here. I took the survey and told them I don't want to join their club, thanks anyway, and that the AKC could disappear from the planet and dogs would be better off. It was interesting to note that in the little space where they ask you to explain why you chose a mixed-breed dog, they only give you space to write a very short sentence, so no long rants about what genetic nighmares many pure breeds have become thanks to rampant inbreeding (to "better" the breed!) and the AKC's closed-registry policies that have reduced gene pools to shallow puddles. Also, on one mandatory question about how I think their new mutt club would benefit me, they didn't include a "none of the above" answer, so I was forced to lie and claim some benefit just to continue the survey. Great way to hear no evil, AKC!

13 comments:

Elayne said...

I loved the bias in the survey for the dog legislation questions. All laws limiting breeding or requiring spay/neuter are labeled 'unreasonable'. Well who is going to say they're in favor of any law about anything that's 'unreasonable'? I've never seen such blatant propaganda in a survey.

I hope they give up on this stupid lark, I'd hate to see mixed breeds competing on unequal footing with the purebreds. And of course I hate to see them get more money.

They may not give you much space to say why you prefer a mixed breed but they have a space to comment about why you don't want to join and another at the end for general comments about the AKC. I'll confess, I wasn't shy.

Johann The Dog said...

Thanks for the heads up, we're off to take the survey. And we'll post about it today.

wishy the writer said...

We have a mixed breed and purebreds. Have never attended an AKC trial because our mix wouldn't be welcome. Not sure if I'd like to try AKC agility if they allow mixes in a partial manner. And there are only so many weekends to compete anyway and USDAA keeps me pretty busy. We'll see.

Pacco de Mongrel said...

the situation is same here in Malaysia...instead of AKC, we have MKA...

they charge me, the mixed breed with more expensive fees, just because i want to join their trials...

i wish they would also dissapear for all i care..

Vic said...

My mutt will be excited to hear about this new development from the AKC...

BTW, your blog was mentioned in today's Wall Street Journal.

Lisa B. said...

The WSJ? No way!

It's too bad that in a cost-cutting move designed to keep myself competitive in today's economy I gave up my WSJ subscription because it was hella expensive.

jdege said...

They emailed me the survey. and I responded honestly.

Told them my purebred dog was registered with the JRTC, that I select mixed-breed dogs because of the genetic wreckage caused by the Kennel Clubs, that there is nothing that the AKC can offer that I would be interested in, until they disallow closed stud books and allow performance standards for their breeds.

Johann The Dog said...

Found part of a reprint here on the WSJ article...

http://kaoshi.wobuxihuan.org/The_Wall_Street_Journal-20080128-Consumer_Technology-_Blog_Watch

Congrats!

Lisa B. said...

Thanks!

Vic said...

I think I still have that edition and you're welcome to have it if you want it.

Lisa B. said...

Thanks Vic--it's just a littyle blurb and now that I've satisfied my curiosity I'm good to go. But it's nice of you to offer ;-)

Elf said...

I didn't go into nearly so much detail with my answer, but when they asked why I had picked a mixed-breed, I did say "because it's not a purebred." And let them read between the lines.

I am not thrilled with AKC and never have been. In my part of the country, we don't need them and don't want them (for non-AKC dogs to do agility). But in many parts of the country, AKC is all that's offered, and if they let dogs compete on an equal footing, it might open up opportunities for people who otherwise wouldn't get the chance.

-ellen

Lisa B. said...

If that's the case, I guess I'd prefer to promote and help spread the other venues than see the AKC get stronger. There was a time when AKC was almost the only thing around here but now we have all sorts of options. I think some of the AKC trials aren't filling now--which may be why they're reaching for the mixed breeds.