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Evergreen Golden Retriever Club

code of ethics

The code of ethics of the Evergreen Golden Retriever Club is designed to provide specific guidelines by which the membership can meet the objectives of the Club as stated in the Constitution: to preserve the structure, temperament, natural abilities and personality of the Golden Retriever as described in the breed standard and to do all possible to bring their natural abilities and qualities to perfection; to accept the standard of the breed as approved by the AKC as the only standard of excellence for the Golden Retriever; to protect and advance the interest of the breed by encouraging sportsmanlike conduct; and to provide education on the Golden Retriever.


All members will exhibit a high standard of sportsmanship, goodwill, integrity and friendship and will act solely in the best interest of the Club and the Golden Retriever. No member of the E.G.R.C., its Board of Directors, delegates, or committee members will use their position within the Club to further their own interests. All members will comply with an AKC rules and regulations. Whenever the provisions of this document shall conflict with any AKC edict, the appropriate AKC edict shall govern; however, the remaining provisions of this document shall remain in full force and effect.


Members should ensure that their dogs are not a nuisance to their neighbors or the community in general and that they are properly controlled at all times. Members should try to do all they can to foster good relations among dogs, their owners and the community.


The Club encourages all members to become informed about all aspects of the Golden Retriever breed. Indeed, this is a fundamental principal of the club. Discussion, even diversity of opinion, is encouraged as an integral part of the educational process. Members are encouraged to contribute and share their knowledge and practices with one another. Members are expected to recognize the presence of a diversity of goals and fundamental differences of opinion among colleagues, but are expected to treat such diversities with fairness and to treat each other with courtesy and respect.


Members must provide their Goldens with proper exercise and attention. Dogs must be kept under sanitary conditions and be provided with proper shelter, water and nutrition. All dogs must be given proper health protection through a program of regular inoculations, worming, and veterinary care.


Breeding is an art as well as a science. Delineating the principles of an art is not always easy so some leeway must be left to the breeder's judgment. One must look at the sum total of the dog, not just the medical facts. It is recognized that while there is no genetically perfect breed, one should attempt to reduce the problems recognized to exist in the Golden Retriever. To a majority of breeders the following are necessary components of a sound breeding program.

  1. All breeding stock will be in good health, of sound temperament and should be free from known major hereditary defects at the time of breeding.

  2. The sire and dam will be carefully and knowledgeably selected so that each litter will be appropriately planned with parents of quality, as described in the AKC Official Standard.

  3. The hips, elbows, eyes and heart of all breeding stock should be evaluated by a qualified veterinarian. It is highly recommended that the appropriate clearances for hips, elbows, eyes and heart be obtained as follows:

    • The hips and elbows radio graphically by the Orthopedic Foundation for Animals (OFA).

    • The eyes by either a Board Certified Ophthalmologist and/or CERF.

    • The heart by a Board Certified Cardiologist and/or a sonogram or an echocardiogram performed by a qualified veterinary specialist when a Board Certified Cardiologist is not available.

  4.  Consideration should also be given to other defects or problems that may contain a genetic component and that sometimes may occur in the breed, including but not limited to: skin allergies, hypothyroidism, epilepsy, elbow dysphasia, panosteitis, osteochondritis dissecans (OCD), von Willebrands disease (VWD) and cancer.

  5.  Only mature dogs and bitches should be bred; preferably after 24 months of age, and bitches not after 8 years of age.

  6. Breeding stock and litters will be kept under sanitary conditions and health protection will be given through a program of inoculation, worming, veterinary care and proper nutrition.

  7. Socialization of the litter will be given to encourage sound temperament.

  8.  A bitch should not be bred more than two (2) successive seasons if the seasons are less than one (1) year apart.


  1. The breeder will carefully screen prospective purchasers in order to place puppies into safe and healthy homes.

  2. Members will not sell or consign puppies or dogs to pet shops, commercial brokers, raffles or other promotions.

  3. Puppies should not leave the breeder before six (6) weeks of age, preferably seven (7) weeks of age.

  4. Puppies should be sold with full disclosure of the strengths and weaknesses of the breeding pair and the clearance obtained, as well as the condition of the puppy.

  5. Breeders are required to use clear, concise written contracts to document the sale of puppies.

  6. Spaying and neutering should be required for those puppies which for any reason are not to be used for breeding.

  7. It is recommended that the AKC Limited Registration be used when appropriate. In addition to the contract, the breeder will provide the purchaser with the following;

    •  AKC registration papers, full or limited; (breeder has the right to with hold AKC papers, if the contract is not signed by the puppy buyer).

    •  A pedigree of three (3) or more generations;

    • An inoculation and worming record;

    • Written instruction on puppy care, feeding schedule and housebreaking methods;

    • Information about the care, raising and training of the Golden Retriever and their assurance that they will be available to -answer future questions.

    • Written statement specifying that the breeder be contacted whenever an owner can no longer keep a dog at any time in the dog's life and it will be the obligation of the breeder to assist in the placement or disposition of the dog. Breeders will keep accurate records of all their dogs, breeding, litters and pedigrees; as well as owners names, addresses and telephone numbers for each litter, in accordance with AKC rules and regulation.


Any member of the E.G.R.C. who violates this Code of Ethics, may be subject to suspension or expulsion from the E.G.R.C. as provided for in the Club By-Laws {Articles VI, Discipline).


This document may be amended following the amendment procedure for the By-Laws set forth in Article VII of the E.G.R.C. By-Laws. This document will be reviewed every two (2) years, and amended if necessary.