Golden Retriever Breed Rules of Eligibility

Please read the following and send any comments you may have to GRCC Secretary, Christine Kobler at by July 29th, 2015. The GRCC Board will be making its decision on the recommendation for the wording for the Golden Retriever Breed Rules of Eligibility at the 2015 ABM.

The Canadian Kennel Club is proceeding with the establishment of Rules of Eligibility for all dog breeds recognized by the CKC.  This is a requirement of Agriculture Canada under the Animal Pedigree Act, since it was revised in the 1980s.  Unfortunately CKC has fallen behind in meeting this requirement.  Many of the purebred animal registries covered under the Animal Pedigree Act concern only one or a small number of breeds, not 175 dog breeds.  So the process of establishing the ROE is a long and arduous one.  The big problem is Agriculture Canada will not allow the full recognition of any new breeds until this requirement is met or at least well underway.  There are 21 breeds currently waiting.  The referendum on ROE passed last year and seven breeds had their ROE accepted.

The purpose of the ROE is to provide a brief, concise physical description of the animal.  They are suggesting only 40-50 word description, which in my opinion is a bit sparse.  It does not replace the Breed Standard.  The wording should describe the basic physical appearance of the dog so that any dog not having these characteristics will not be considered a Golden Retriever.  There will be an impact on CKC registration, in that future litter registration applications will require the breeder to certify that the parents of the litter meet the Rules of Eligibility.  The ROE would be used by an Examining Committee if a dog was challenged as being purebred.  The ROE do not apply to competitions nor should they be concerned with undesirable characteristics that may exclude an otherwise purebred Golden from being registered.  (i.e. disqualifications in Goldens such as outside the size limits, bad bite, etc.)

Parent Clubs are being contacted where they exist, to help draft the ROE.  The ROE will be published for comment online.  As it stands now, Golden breeders who have had litters within the last 5 years will receive ballots.  I challenged the ROE Committee on this, as I would not qualify to vote and suggested that active individuals be allowed to request a ballot.  Members will be able to comment once the ROE is published online.  Only CKC members of the specific breed fancy will vote on their respective breed ROE.

Ainslie Mills, as Chair of the Breed Standard and Judges’ Education Committee, was appointed by the Board to participate in the conference call with the CKC and draft the initial proposal of the ROE.

Rules of Eligibility (ROE):  (Template from Agriculture Canada. ROE required for all breeds of animals covered by Animal Pedigree Act).

  1. Size (Limited to Small, Medium, Large or Very Large)
    Medium Large

  2. Coat Colour
    Lustrous golden of various shades, ranging from cream to deep red-gold; feathering may be lighter than body coat.

  3. Colour Markings
    Areas of white hair on head, chest and feet and areas of black hairs can occur.

  4. Coat Texture/Length
    Dense, water repellent, resilient with good undercoat. Straight or wavy. Moderate feathering on back of forelegs, heavier on front of neck, back of thighs, underside of tail.

  5. Body
    Level topline, well-balanced, short coupled, well-sprung ribcage. Chest depth reaches to elbows.

  6. Ear Shape/Placement
    Rather short, drop ear with front edge attached well behind and just above eye, rounded tips reach to inside corner of eye.

  7. Tail Shape/Carriage
    Set on following natural line of croup, well-feathered, bone reaches to point of hock, carried level or with some upward curve

  8. Unique Characteristics
    Head: kind, friendly expression. Dark, medium large eyes. Black or dark brown pigment. Skull broad, slightly arched. Muzzle nearly as long as skull.

  9. Genetic/Observable Variabilities
    Dudley nose

  10. Feet
    Medium size, round, compact, thick pads