Saturday, August 6, 2016

Purdue University’s Center for Animal Welfare Science says more rigorous standards for commercial dog breeders is needed

Candace Croney, director of Purdue University’s Center for Animal Welfare Science, was motivated to lead research that resulted in new, higher standards for the treatment of commercially bred dogs not just because she is a scientist.

She is a dog owner and wants the best for her pet as well as all dogs.

Croney knows that federally mandated minimum standards breeders must meet are just that - the minimum.

“My guiding question has been is minimum standard good enough? Do we really want that?” Croney said. “Dogs deserve better than that. We can raise the bar. I would think all dog owners want that. The public wants it, too.”

The research by Croney and others at the Center for Animal Welfare Science over the past three years resulted in a new national certification program that sets rigorous standards for the care of dogs and puppies by professional breeders.  

Canine Care Certified was announced Tue., Aug. 2 in Las Vegas during a national conference of the pet care industry.

The voluntary program has been pilot-tested with 16 professional breeders since early 2015. Croney said every breeder in the pilot has shown improvement in the care of their dogs.

Croney said no other program sets standards as comprehensive as those provided by Canine Care Certified. The program exceeds other canine welfare programs and state and federal laws that often provide only a minimum level of standards and do not fully address areas such as dogs’ behavioral needs, such as socialization.

Also, breeders seeking certification under Canine Care Certified must meet the criteria and pass a third-party audit of their operation. Other voluntary programs do not have substantive measurement and evaluation provisions. 

More information about the Center for Animal Welfare Science is at

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