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American Bouvier des Flandres Club
Code of Ethics
Revised effective May, 2018

This Code is designed to establish a standard of conduct to be followed by all members of the AMERICAN BOUVIER des FLANDRES CLUB in the course of breeding, selling, exhibiting and advertising Bouviers.


  • a)  Members will consider the welfare of the breed when engaged in any activities involving breeding, exhibiting and selling of Bouviers, and will refrain from any actions which would be prejudicial to the best interests of the breed and the Club.
  • b)  Members will provide appropriate and humane care to each dog they own or have in their possession including quality of food, water, proper shelter from the elements, active companionship, appropriate exercise, socialization and routine veterinary care.
  • c)  Members will never abuse or knowingly allow abuse of these same dogs.
  • d)  Members will provide appropriate and safe containment and control of their dogs at their residences and while in public.
  • e)  Members will properly train their dogs so they are assets to the community.


  • a)  The goal is to breed carefully and with discrimination for the purpose of improving the breed,
  • b)  A Bouvier without registration papers shall not be used for breeding.
  • c)  All breeding stock shall be in good health and free from communicable disease.
  • d)  It is strongly suggested that individuals whose dog or bitch is to be bred to another follow the CHIC health requirements and complete the recommended tests prior to breeding. It is also suggested that all results be posted on the respective health registries. A CHIC number is issued when test results are entered into the database satisfying each breed specific requirement, and when the owner of the dog has opted to release the results into the public domain. The CHIC number itself does not imply normal test results, only that all the required breed specific tests were performed and the results made publicly available.
  • e)  No bitch shall be bred at the time of her first season unless this occurs after 12 months of age. No bitch should be bred more often than two out of three heat cycles unless in excellent health and under the care of a licensed veterinarian.  No bitch should be bred after the age of 8 years unless under the care of a licensed veterinarian.
  • f)  If a bitch is to be bred to more than one stud dog during one oestrus cycle as allowed by the AKC, the owner of the bitch shall follow all AKC requirements and verify parentage of all offspring including companion animals.
  • g)  Full disclosure of what a dog or bitch has previously produced and background details as known should be provided when requested by either party to a proposed breeding.
  • h)  It is strongly suggested that, to protect all parties, stud service contracts are to be made in writing and executed and signed by both parties.
  • i)  All breeders shall be responsible for any dog for which they are the breeder of record that is in need of rescue or is in the Rescue program. If the dog is in the Rescue program, the breeder shall be responsible for the cost of returning the dog.  Should the dog remain with Rescue for whatever reason, the breeder is required to conform to all Rescue guidelines and must reimburse Rescue for all reasonable and agreed upon costs incurred.


  • a)  No member of the club shall engage in wholesaling of litters of Bouviers or individual sales of puppies or adults to pet shops, pet dealers, catalog houses or other commercial establishments, nor shall they be given as prizes in contests nor exploited to the detriment of the breed or of pure-bred dogs. Donation of puppies or adult Bouviers is not allowed to laboratories or any entity, with the exception of established/reputable service training organizations (i.e. guide dogs, etc.). Bouviers are not to be offered at auction.
  • b)  All Bouviers sold shall be in good health and condition, free from communicable disease. No adult or puppy shall be sold without adequate immunization against disease in terms of its age.Once fully immunized, titer testing can be done. Veterinarian protocols should be followed for immunization.
  • c)  Puppies will not be sent to new owners until the puppy has reached the age of 7 weeks.
  • d) It is strongly suggested Puppies be microchipped prior to sale, including the breeder’s contact information until such time as the new owner can change the contact information.
  • e) The Breeder shall disclose any known health and hereditary issues of sire and dam to the buyer prior to sale.
  • f)  The Breeder will ascertain information about the buyer and home conditions prior to sale.
  • g) Pet quality stock shall not be misrepresented as show prospects.
  • h)  A puppy showing deviations from the standard, rendering it unsuitable for breeding or showing, will be registered by the breeder with a limited registration. Only the breeder may request the AKC to remove the limitation at some later date, when conditions warrant such action. All other puppies eligible for registration will be registered within the time constraints of the AKC. Papers may not be withheld without a signed agreement with the buyer.
  • i)  Sellers are to provide buyers with the following papers: 
    1. A sales contract specifying all conditions of the sale and signed by both buyer and sellerThe contract shall specify any: health guarantees; reimbursement, relinquish, return and replacement conditions, and any required testing/screenings.
    2. The rules pertaining to limited registration and conditions of co-ownership, if appropriate.
    3. An application to register or an application to transfer ownership with the necessary information filled in unless the sales contract specifies that papers are to be withheld until certain conditions of the sale have been completed.
    4. A four-generation pedigree.
    5. Health records and care instructions will be provided to the new owners at the time of delivery of the puppy.
  • j)  Should the owner need to surrender the puppy or dog for any reason, the breeder(s) have first option in obtaining this puppy/dog. The Breeder(s) will offer to take back the dog or assist in finding another home if circumstances warrant.
  • k)  Breeder will follow AKC regulations related to sales


  • a)  Members shall conduct themselves at all time in a manner which will reflect credit upon themselves and upon the breed, regardless if the location or circumstances, but especially when attending dog club meetings or shows, whether as an exhibitor or spectator.
  • b)  Members will adhere to the AKC code of sportsmanship at all times and maintain the highest degree of honesty and integrity.
  • c)  Members will respect the property of others, including facilities used for dog events, especially by use of proper sanitary measures.
  • d)  No Officer, Director or other member shall knowingly represent his/her personal opinion to be the official position of the ABdFC or of its Board of Directors in the media or other means of public communication.

AKC Code of Sportsmanship PREFACE: The sport of purebred dog competitive events dates prior to 1884, the year of AKC’s birth. Shared values of those involved in the sport include principles of sportsmanship. They are practiced in all sectors of our sport: conformation, performance and companion. Many believe that these principles of sportsmanship are the prime reason why our sport has thrived for over one hundred years. With the belief that it is useful to periodically articulate the fundamentals of our sport, this code is presented. • Sportsmen respect the history, traditions and integrity of the sport of purebred dogs. • Sportsmen commit themselves to values of fair play, honesty, courtesy, and vigorous competition, as well as winning and losing with grace. • Sportsmen refuse to compromise their commitment and obligation to the sport of purebred dogs by injecting personal advantage or consideration into their decisions or behavior. • The sportsman judge judges only on the merits of the dogs and considers no other factors. • The sportsman judge or exhibitor accepts constructive criticism. • The sportsman exhibitor declines to enter or exhibit under a judge where it might reasonably appear that the judge’s placements could be based on something other than the merits of the dogs. • The sportsman exhibitor refuses to compromise the impartiality of a judge. • The sportsman respects the AKC bylaws, rules, regulations and policies governing the sport of purebred dogs. • Sportsmen find that vigorous competition and civility are not inconsistent and are able to appreciate the merit of their competition and the effort of competitors. • Sportsmen welcome, encourage and support newcomers to the sport. • Sportsmen will deal fairly with all those who trade with them. • Sportsmen are willing to share honest and open appraisals of both the strengths and weaknesses of their breeding stock. • Sportsmen spurn any opportunity to take personal advantage of positions offered or bestowed upon them. • Sportsmen always consider as paramount the welfare of their dog. • Sportsmen refuse to embarrass the sport, the American Kennel Club, or themselves while taking part in the sport. GSSPT2 (11/16) American Kennel Club


  • a)  All advertising shall be truthful and ethical. Any claims made must be provable. Fraudulent advertising, misrepresentation or misleading statements shall constitute prima-facie evidence of violation of the intents of this Code. In the case of untruthful or unethical advertising, the censured must, at his expense, have a retraction printed in the same publication and in the same size as that of the advertising for which he was censured.
  • b)  Members who do not own or co-own the dog must have written permission to use photographs from the owner of the dog for any form of advertising, including web sites
  • c)  All health clearances must be identified with certifying body and number.
  • d)  All titles earned must be identified.  If the title is non-AKC, the titling body must be identified.


Violations or infractions to the Code are to be brought to the Board's attention and dealt with in the manner prescribed by the Club's Constitution and By-Laws.

Last Updated on Thursday, 05 July 2018 23:07