We finally have someone at the helm of AKC who gets the ARs!

-----Original Message-----
-- Defending Our Rights --

New York, NY - For years, animal rights extremists have focused on attacking
the health of purebred dogs based on what they determined were improper
breeding programs, and have indiscriminately discredited dog breeders with
unsupported anecdotal stories as opposed to facts. We all know the
unsubstantiated accusations all too well.

Unfortunately, the rather gullible media simply accepted these allegations
without objective investigation. A case in point is the untruthful story
about Bulldogs published in the New York Times Magazine. Interestingly,
while we supplied significant factual information about the health of
Bulldogs, as did the Bulldog Club of America, the article was selective -
which is just a nice word for "biased" - in the utilization of those facts.
In the end, the story was simply propaganda, not journalism.

But starting last year, there was a subtle, yet very noticeable shift in the
communication tactics of the two largest animal rights organizations.
Previously, for the most part, they had practiced a strategy of either
ignoring or dismissing the AKC. Simply put, they did not see us as an
organization of any concern to them in their quest to eliminate dog
ownership through the elimination of breeders. As they have made very clear,
their stated goal is "no new puppies" - a goal they intend to accomplish
through legislation and ballot initiatives to mandate spay/neuter and
restrict breeders to the point of oblivion.

So, what changed? We did. In the past few years all of us - you, your clubs,
and the AKC - have become more aggressive, more organized, more vocal, and
more visible in legislative matters.

The tipping point last year appears to have been our proactive approach to
the proposed APHIS rule changes, which included both a well-documented,
reasonable, and thorough review of all the issues with suggestions to make
the intent of the regulatory changes achievable without unnecessarily
damaging hobby breeders, and a petition of support signed by over 75,000
concerned dog owners. Our response to APHIS caught the extremists completely
by surprise and sent them into a whirlwind of activity that amounted to
nothing. Most likely, their evaluation after the storm was that the AKC
needed much greater attention from them.

But the proactive plan around the APHIS rule changes was just the tip of the
spear the AR extremists have been feeling of late. The AKC Legislative
Department, led by the pleasantly indomitable Sheila Goffe, has made our
presence, knowledge, and commitment felt on a myriad of legislative issues
around the country. Last year, Sheila's department monitored more than 1,500
pieces of legislation. Contrary to what the AR extremists would have people
believe, we are a respected resource in dog legislation for legislators and
governmental organizations charged with animal care oversight. Our Care and
Conditions of Dogs Policy is accepted as an intelligent and fair standard.
Our careful analysis of proposed legislation helps reveal unreasonable
requirements buried in a bill that would make it virtually impossible for a
legislator's constituents to be in compliance. Our individual financial
support of legislators' campaigns has made new and strong friends for the
AKC and our mission.!
And your clubs, and the hard-working AKC legislative liaisons at both the
state and local levels, have made significant inroads in protecting our
rights to own and breed our dogs responsibly.

Today, the AKC is neither being ignored nor dismissed by the AR extremists.
Instead, those organizations are now attacking us using the same propaganda
tactics of lies and innuendo. I believe our position as squarely in the
sights of the AR extremists is a status and a challenge we should accept
with resolve and great pride.

As a former ad guy, I am reminded of a 1915 magazine ad for Cadillac
considered one of the greatest print ads of all time. It only ran once - in
the Saturday Evening Post. I believe that ad, titled "The Penalty of
Leadership," captures the essence of the American Kennel Club and the
challenges we face from AR extremists. The ad explains why companies that
honor "standards of excellence" become "targets of the envious."

Here are a few pertinent sentences:

"In every field of human endeavor, he that is first must perpetually live in
the white light of publicity. The reward is widespread recognition; the
punishment, fierce denial and detraction. When a man's work becomes a
standard for the whole world, it also becomes a target for the shafts of the
envious few. If his work be merely mediocre, he will be left severely alone.
If he achieves a masterpiece, it will set a million tongues a-wagging.

The leader is assailed because he is the leader. The follower seeks to
depreciate and to destroy. If the leader truly leads, he remains - the

How are we leading in this fight for our rights?

First, we are proactively taking our messages of the Good Things We Do (the
Parent Club rescue network, AKC kennel inspections, AKC CAR, and our
collective commitment to improving the health of dogs) to the public; we are
telling the facts about purpose-bred dogs and the desirability of owning a
well-bred purebred as the family dog; and we are telling the stories of the
passionate commitment of our breeders to protect, preserve, and improve
purebred dogs. We are doing that through a combination of an aggressive
public relations strategy utilizing every media opportunity imaginable to
get our story told correctly and in its entirety. In addition, we now have
an expert in social media, which gives us the ability to tell the narrative
of the AKC throughout the world of social media. For the first time, we will
have a constant and consistent platform to reach the general public every

Second, we will always be aggressive in responding to AR propaganda posing
as media stories. The difference in our response to the Bulldog story and
the response to the New York Times attack on the AKC is a demonstration of
our new commitment to act quickly, broadly and emphatically.

While the cost to have a day-in and day-out public outreach program and an
immediate response program is significant, we can afford it. In fact, we
can't afford not to have it.

With Churchill as inspiration, our mantra now is this: we will fight with
growing confidence and growing strength; we will defend our rights, whatever
the cost may be; and we will never stop fighting.

Your comments and suggestion are most welcome mailto:atk%40akc.org.


Alan Kalter

Stop P.U.P.S! Contact your Representative and Senator at this link:
It is quick and simple...Do it today to save your right to breed and raise

November 16, 2009 HSUS CEO, Wayne Pacelle, made the suggestion:
...every "responsible breeder" is a "puppy miller", every "family farmer" is
a "factory farmer" and every "responsible hunter" is a "poacher".
This is what HSUS really thinks about anyone involved with animals!  
Don't donate and don't believe them when HSUS says they protect animals.