Breeders Code of Ethics 2015

United States of America Coton de Tulear Club, Inc.



The United States of America Coton de Tuléar Club, Inc. hereafter referred to as the

USACTC, or the Club, is an organization devoted to the preservation and welfare of

the Coton de Tuléar breed. The purpose of this code of ethics is to provide guidelines for the members of the USACTC that promote the ideals and principles necessary to properly maintain and protect the Coton de Tuléar breed. With this in mind, each member must consider the welfare of the breed when engaged in any activities involving competition, breeding and selling of the Coton de Tuléar and must refrain from any activity that would be detrimental to the best interests of the breed and of the Club. Our goal is to produce a Coton that is uniform in type, sound of mind and body, and suited to its purpose as a small versatile companion.

The USACTC endorses the following guidelines as the ethical requirements for Coton

de Tuléar breeders. The breeders’ responsibilities are in two parts:

  1. The first part is the USACTC Guidelines for conducting an ethical breeding program.
  1. The second part is the Agreement and Requirements, certifying a breeder’s commitment and obligation to adhere to the USACTC code standard.


  1. Federal. USACTC breeders are responsible for staying informed of the federal Animal Welfare Act (AWA) which was signed 2 Sep 2013 and went into effect 2 Nov 2013.  Subject to US Department of Agriculture, breeders are responsible for complying with federal licensing laws defining hobby breeders and retailers in the sale of puppies.
  2. State. USACTC breeders are responsible for complying with state, county and residential zoning regulations for conducting a breeding program.
  3. AKC. By registering litters with AKC, USACTC breeders will comply with the AKC breeding program.  This includes utilizing AKC forms for dog ownership and breeding records, and maintaining such records for a period of five years after a Dam or Sire has been retired/removed from a breeding program.
  4. USACTC breeders will review and operate a breeding environment in compliance with AKC rules for inspections of records, kennel conditions, cleanliness, and health of all dogs on premise. Failure to comply or any fines imposed by federal, state or AKC is the responsibility of the breeder and will not by borne by USACTC based on membership affiliation.
  5. COE Breeders Making Application From Other Specialty Clubs must first apply for membership and be approved. As a USACTC member, application for COE can be made.  Indicate on the application form the club affiliation and if a current COE or  holding any club positions where talents can be used.
  6. Applicant’s breedable/show dogs must meet USACTC health testing requirements prior to application, and certification numbers assigned to these tests listed on OFA (  USACTC COE and Health Committee Chairpersons will assist in this process and mentor applicant, if requested.
  7. Requirement for dogs to be registered with USACTC or AKC FSS is waivered for the calendar year of approved application for COE.  However, applicant must have all breedable/show dogs reregistered with USACTC or AKC FSS when making application for COE renewal the following year.
  8. Breeding Each member should understand and accept the AKC breed standard as presented by the USACTC and should, whenever breeding a litter or allowing the use of a stud dog, direct all possible efforts to producing individuals of quality that conform to that standard.

All breeding stock should:

  • Be of characteristic type.
  • Exhibit sound structure.
  • Show stable temperament (neither shy nor vicious).
  • Be in good health and condition.
  • Be free of communicable diseases and genetic defects.

NOTE:  In multi-sire households containing intact males of any breed, all males should be DNA certified through AKC and be issued a DNA Profile Number to identify correct paternity of any puppies produced.

Members should make every effort to:

  • Stay current in their knowledge of genetic problems present in the breed.
  • Utilize available testing procedures to detect genetic defects.
  • Refrain from breeding any dog that displays or tests “affected” of known genetic disorders.

Every mating should be planned:

  • With the intention of conforming to the ideals of the breed standard: type, temperament, health, co-efficient of inbreeding, age.
  • With careful consideration to the conformation of both Sire and Dam.
  • With careful research of the pedigrees of the mating dogs, and genetics.

Health Testing

The following health screening tests will be performed on all dogs being evaluated for breeding:

Mandatory Testing:

  • Patellar evaluations; must be at least 12 months of age.
  • Dilated eye exams can be performed by a certified veterinary ophthalmologist at 6 months of age, but must be completed at 12 months of age to receive credit on dog’s OFA (Orthopedic Foundation for Animals; profile page.  Exam is current for one year from date of exam.  COE Breeder agrees to perform this test every two years throughout a dog’s breeding career
  • Cardiac Evaluations; must be at least 12 months of age.

Optional Testing – select at least one from the following list:

  • Radiographs of hips
  • Radiographs of elbows
  • Thyroid screenings

Optional Genetic Disease Testing – select at least two from the following list. Complete screening of all genetic tests on stud males is recommended, and females for any male that is found to be a carrier of any below listed diseases.  COE breeders will not breed carriers to carriers of any known genetic disease.

  • BNA (Bandera’s Neonatal Cerebellar Ataxia)
  • DM (Degenerative Myelopathy)
  • CMR2 (Canine Multifunctional Retinopathy
  • Von Willebrands
  • PH (Primary Hyperoxyluria)
  • HU (Hyperuricosuria)

CHIC Canine Health Information Center

The Canine Health Information Center known as CHIC, is a centralized canine health database jointly sponsored by the AKC/Canine Health Foundation (AKC/CHF) and the Orthopedic Foundation for Animals (OFA).  The CHIC works with parent clubs by providing a resource for breeders and owners of purebred dogs to research and maintain information on the health issues prevalent in specific breeds.  In depth definition of the purpose, goals and objectives as well as the benefits and policies can be found on the OFA website.

OFA will issue certificates for all health testing posted on a dog’s profile page.  In addition to the USACTC COE breeder health testing requirements listed herein, a breeder can strive to obtain a CHIC rating through an additional battery of health tests.  Dogs who have a CHIC number will be listed in the OFA database with the CHIC logo, which will be linked to the information in the CHIC database.

Eye Examination by a boarded ACVO Ophthalmologist

  • Results registered with OFA

Patellar Luxation

  • OFA Evaluation

Hip Dysplasia

  • OFA Evaluation

Health Elective (One of the following tests)

  • OFA Cardiac Evaluation
  • OFA Thyroid evaluation from an approved laboratory
  • OFA Evaluation of Von Willebrands test
  • OFA Elbow

*Note – In addition to the breed specific requirements above, a CHIC requirement is that the dog must be permanently identified via microchip or tattoo in order to qualify for a CHIC number.

All forms for the performance of any of these health screenings may be obtained from the OFA website or through any laboratory whose test results are accepted by OFA. Upon completion, test results will be posted to a dog’s profile page on the OFA website.

Kennel Management

  • Ethical breeders shall be physically and financially able to provide for the special health and nutritional needs of brood bitches and their litters before breeding.
  • Breeders agree to maintain the best possible standards of canine health, sanitary living conditions, and veterinary care. Breeders agree to provide proper socialization and to provide a mentally stimulating environment for their dogs.
  • Breeders understand that all dogs owned by them should have some form of permanent identification, i.e. tattoo, microchip, and/or DNA profile.


  • Ethical breeders shall be discriminating in the placement of their Coton de Tuléar puppies. This includes thorough screening of all prospective buyers to determine their suitability for Coton de Tuléar ownership.
  • USACTC does not consider ethical any of the following practices:
    • • Over-breeding of bitches for profit, with no regard for the quality of the puppies. or health of the female.
    • • Consignment or sale outright to pet shops, catalogue houses, animal brokers, or other commercial sources of distribution. •
    • Donation of Coton de Tuléar as prizes for raffles, auctions, or contests.
    • Wholesaling of Coton de Tuléar litters to puppy brokers and pet shops.

USACTC breeders should provide buyers with:

  • Instructions on care to include grooming, feeding, house-training, and complete health care. •
  • Puppies or adults in good health with a Veterinarian health certificate in states where required. •
  • Consultation after completion of a sale.
  • Assistance, sponsorship and/or mentoring in regard to Club membership, breeding, conformation, training, socialization, and exhibition of the Coton de Tuléar, if requested. •
  • A sales contract indicating guarantees, warranties, condition of refunds or replacement, and conditions of spay/neuter and registrations.
  • • A copy of a USACTC membership application.


USACTC breeders may have ethical considerations they adhere to in addition to  those mentioned here. It is recognized that legitimate exceptions to this code of ethics may arise from time to time. •In such cases, a member may request the situation be reviewed by the President, or the President’s designee(s). •The President (or designee) will make a recommendation to the Board of Directors. •Upon sufficient evidence and under conditions where the welfare of the breed is assured, the Board of Directors may waive any of the foregoing provisions.

Nothing in this code of ethics should be construed to be in violation of the rules and regulations of the American Kennel Club or the constitution and by-laws of the USACTC.



Breeder’s Requirements and Agreement

I accept the following terms and conditions of a responsible USACTC COE Breeder:

  1. I will observe and comply with the rules and regulations of The American Kennel Club, the constitution and bylaws of the United States Of America Coton De Tuléar Club, and this code of ethics.
  2. I will understand and accept the breed standard as presented by the United States Of America Coton De Tuléar Club and should, whenever breeding a litter or allowing the use of a stud dog, direct all possible efforts to producing individuals of quality that conform to that standard.
  3. I will be a member in good standing of the USACTC.
  4. I will register every Coton I own and/or co-own by 18 months of age and every litter produced by me by 8 weeks of age with the American Kennel Club.
  5. I will comply with the AKC breeder regulations for record keeping and identification of dogs.
  6. I will utilize the AKC Dog Ownership and Breeding Record forms and retain them in a binder for a period of 5 years after a breeding Coton is retired.
  7. By registering my dogs and litters with AKC, I accept the AKC breeder program and I am subject to both records and kennel/environment living condition inspections.
  8. As the owner of a stud dog, I agree that I will use a written contract for all stud service agreements and agree to sign an AKC litter application form once the requirements of my stud agreement have been met. I will require that the bitch’s owner sell all resulting puppies that are of companion/non-breeding/limited quality with a spay/neuter agreement.
  9. I will utilize testing procedures to detect genetic defects in my breeding Cotons and refrain from breeding any dog that either displays or is known to be “affected” by identified diseases.
  10. I agree and will comply with screening and testing for the purpose of obtaining normal/clear health results before breeding.
  11. I will only breed a bitch or stud that is in excellent physical condition and has full breeding registration with the AKC.
  12. I will complete OFA forms and send results to OFA to be posted on their website for all of my breeding Cotons.
  13. If a breeding occurs where a bitch has multiple partners either through a breeder’s intent or from an accidental breeding, then I will perform DNA sampling of all males and all puppies to assign correct parentage of the prodigy.
  14. I will sell every Coton de Tuléar that is produced by me with a sales contract and an application for USACTC membership.
  15. I will sell all provisional Coton de Tuléar puppies with a contract requiring mandatory health testing.
  16. I will sell all non-breeding/limited registration Coton de Tuléars with a spay/ neuter agreement.
  17. I agree that any advertising of my Cotons, either verbal and/or written, will be truthful and shall in no way conflict with the goals of good breeding practices.
  18. I will not engage in the wholesaling of litters of Coton de Tuléar puppies, or the sale of breeding stock or individuals to pet shops or other commercial sources of distribution.
  19. My personal website will have a link to the USACTC website.
  20. I will be of assistance to all newcomers to the breed, if requested, so they may be guided in the way that will best serve the Coton de Tuléar.
  21. I agree to be discriminating in the placement of my Coton de Tuléar puppies and adults. I agree to screen prospective buyers to determine their suitability for ownership of a Coton de Tuléar.
  22. If, at any time, the owner of a puppy decides to relinquish that puppy for any reason, I shall offer full assistance in placing the puppy in a good home.
  23. I will accept the responsibility for each Coton de Tuléar bred by me for its lifetime, and will do whatever is necessary to ensure their welfare.  I will unconditionally accept the return of any puppy produced by me.
  24. Should a Coton de Tuléar turn up in a rescue situation, I should do whatever is necessary to ensure the welfare of the dog, either retrieving the dog personally or assisting rescue in every way possible.
  25. I will observe the highest standards of sportsmanship, conduct and good will at conformation shows, obedience and agility trials and any other event involving the Coton de Tuléar, and will present my Coton De Tuléar in proper condition and free from infectious diseases and shall attend to their health and well being at all events.
  26. I will be respectful and observe the highest courtesies toward others and/or when discussing other breeder’s programs, dogs, pedigrees, associations and reputations. This will include any form of media, technical communications, emails, Facebook, twitter, texting or any chat group.  I will honor and respect breeders from all of the specialty clubs in the endeavor to share information conducive to the variety of methods of preserving the Coton de Tulear.  To this end, I will not bring disgrace on USACTC or any of its goals, objectives, or policies.  Should I no longer feel that my association will further USACTC, I will withdraw my membership with the understanding that I will receive respectful treatment from USACTC in honoring my request.

  Additional Acknowledgements

  • I understand that recognition in the breeders directory is a privilege that is granted to me by the Board of the USACTC.
  • I understand that approval granted by the Board is based upon my agreement to follow the requirements listed above for Code of Ethics breeders.
  • I understand that by agreeing to this Code of Ethics, this does not constitute the Club’s obligation to endorse my application for listing on the USACTC breeders directory.
  • I understand that members of the Board of Directors or officers of the Club may not take an active part in decisions that personally affect them.
  • I understand that if an ethical complaint is filed against me or my kennel, that I will be able to dispute any allegation(s) in writing and appeal any sanction against me.
  • Prior to acceptance by the Board for listing in the Breeders’ Directory, I understand that I must complete the breeder’s application and remit the necessary fees.
  • By the voluntary submission of my application for the COE Breeder’s Directory, I understand and agree to all requirements, guidelines, and acknowledgements herein. I agree to abide by the above USACTC Code of Ethics to the best of my ability, putting the welfare and advancement of the Coton De Tuléar breed first and foremost, over and above my personal interests.

USACTC’s Commitment to COE Breeders

  • Any request, recommendation, appeal or challenge will be fairly and respectfully treated. A breeder’s right do so will be fairly acknowledged.
  • Any COE breeder exercising his/her decision to be removed from the directory or membership as a COE will be fairly considered, treated with respect, and so honored with no repercussions.
  • The Board of Directors will guide, assist, advise and direct all requests for mentoring of new breeders approved to wear the title “COE”, either as first time breeders or breeders from another specialty club who have been approved for USACTC membership.

(revised 1/16/15)