Northern Inuit Association Code of Ethics
The code of ethics has been designed to protect, preserve and advance the Northern Inuit breed and to ensure that future and potential members and puppy owners buy a puppy ethically raised and according to the Association’s current breeding strategy where high standards are always upheld by the breeders and members. It has been put in place to protect our members and ensure that they are treated equally and with respect.
All members agree that they:
● Will properly house, feed, water and exercise all dogs under their care and arrange for appropriate veterinary attention if and when required. The following minimum guidance will be used to assess this statement:
(a) For kennelled dogs living outside: the space should be large enough to allow separate sleeping and daytime activity. The dog should be able to stand and stretch without touching the sides and be able to go on hind legs. Please note that the Association does not encourage housing our dogs permanently in the outdoor kennels.
(b) For indoor dogs they should have sufficient space to be able to stand and stretch etc, and crates should not be used as a permanent living space.
● Will agree without reservation that any veterinary surgeon who performs an operation on any of their dogs which alters the natural conformation of the animal may report such operations to the Association (removal of hind dew claws is allowed until 3 days of age to avoid potential health issues later in the puppy’s life).
● Will abide by all aspects of the Animal Welfare Act.
● Will not allow any of their dogs to roam at large or to cause a nuisance to those carrying out official duties.
● Will ensure that their dogs wear properly tagged collars and will be kept leashed or under effective control when away from home.
● Will clean up after their dogs in public places or anywhere their dogs are being exhibited.
● Will abide by the puppy / dog contracts signed when they have purchased a dog / puppy from one of the breeders who are Association members.
● Will not use social media to make derogatory comments – direct or implied – about another member, the Association or an official of the association. The complaints policy should be followed if there are allegations made about another member or official of the Association.
● If they transfer a dog / bitch under different ownership to notify the Association within 28 days of such transfer providing new owners name, dog/bitch’s microchip number, kennel name and registration number.
All breeders, in addition to the above, agree:
● That no healthy puppy will be culled. Puppies which may not conform to the Breed Standard should be placed in suitable homes.
● Comply with spot checks by the Committee of their dogs welfare and housing arrangements.
● Not to breed from a dog or bitch which could be in any way harmful to the dog or to the breed.
● To carry out appropriate health tests before breeding (please see below for a current list of the tests required and those that are encouraged / recommended in addition to the requirement) and those tests have to be forwarded to the health officer before the dog / bitch is being bred from.
● Any resulting puppies from a carrier to clear mating have to be tested for DM and / or OSD3 genes before being placed in their new homes. This is to ensure that (where possible) clear dogs / bitches are being selected for the breeding pool and ultimately all resulting puppies to be clear by parentage. In exceptional circumstances the breeder can put a request to the Committee to agree for a particular litter to be excluded from this requirement.
● Will ensure that no bitch whelps before the age of two.
● Will ensure that a bitch does not whelp after the age of 8, however relief from this restriction may be considered provided an application is made prior to the mating, the proposed dam has previously whelped at least one other litter, and the application is supported by veterinary evidence as to the suitability of the bitch involved in the proposed whelping. The proposed mating should also be advantageous to the aims of the Association and the current project and will be subject to committee approval.
● Will ensure that no bitch whelps more than 4 litters in her lifetime.
● Will not breed from any bitch who has had two C sections.
● Will not breed from any bitch within a year of the last whelping date.
● Will ensure that no dog is put to stud before the age of 18 months.
● Coordinate with the Committee of The Northern Inuit Association regarding future breeding plans to ensure that the aims of the Association are met., i.e., protecting the health and future of the Northern Inuit breed.
● To share breeding plans with other breeders to ensure that the aims of the Association and overall breeding strategy set for the current project are met.
● To ensure that all puppies are microchipped and that the microchip is registered to the breeder before transfer to their new owners.
● No puppy should leave the breeder before they are 8 weeks old.
● To retain any unsold puppies at their own home until a new owner can be found.
● Puppies under breeders care have to be properly wormed and a statement providing historical worming regime should be provided to the puppy owners.
● No puppy / adult which has any apparent physical defects or which shows any definite departure from the Breed Standard should be knowingly sold without the buyer being made aware of such defect and its possible consequences. Breeders should only sell puppies and adults which to the best of their knowledge and belief, are in good health at the time of sale. If the puppy / dog is not well at the time of sale an appropriate veterinary attention should be arranged before the sale takes place and new owners need to be made aware and given a choice whether they are still prepared to purchase the puppy / dog.
● To complete all documentation, relating to their activities as breeders, required by the Association by the deadlines set.
● To follow up with owners of puppies on a regular basis and no less than once a year to monitor health and temperament. Any problems should be accurately reported to the Health Officer for inclusion in the database.
● Only to sell dogs where there is a reasonable expectation of a happy and healthy life and will help with the re-homing of a dog if the initial circumstances change.
● To supply written details of all dietary requirements and give guidance concerning responsible ownership when placing dogs in a new home.
● To ensure that all relevant documents (pedigree, vaccination records etc) are provided to the new owner when selling or transferring a dog, and agree, in writing, to forward any relevant documents at the earliest opportunity, if not immediately available.
● Not to sell any dog to commercial dog wholesalers, retail pet dealers or directly or indirectly allow dogs to be given as a prize or donation in a competition of any kind.
● Not knowingly misrepresent the characteristics of the breed nor falsely advertise dogs nor mislead any person regarding the health or quality of a dog.
● To not allow a mating where the statistical coefficiency of inbreeding will be higher than 25% measured over 10 generations and coefficiency of inbreeding for a given litter will be disclosed to the potential puppy owners before making their decision to purchase a puppy from the breeder.
● The dog / bitch that they are planning to mate should be fit and healthy. It is not permitted to knowingly mate a dog / bitch who is unwell.
● That If they allow their dog / bitch to be mated with a stud dog / breeding bitch who is not registered / approved by the Association then the resulting puppies will not be registered with the Association and pedigrees will not be produced. The breeders should also ensure that the potential puppy owners who want to buy a puppy from the resulting mating will be notified in writing of this fact and under no circumstances state that those puppies have been approved by the Association. The Committee may ask for written evidence to be produced of the above statements being provided to the potential puppy owners.
● That they will always act with integrity, professionalism and respect and that they will not bring the Association into disrepute.
● To work with the Northern Inuit Association, it’s breeders, members and dog owners, to ensure the aims of the Association are met with regard to the commitment, protection and future of the Northern Inuit. The current breeding strategy forms a part of this document and therefore all breeders should read and agree to follow it’s guidance.
All Committee Officers in addition to the above, agree that they:
● Will follow the constitution and its rules ensuring that the Association is going towards the direction set by the Gold and Breeder members.
● Will always use the Association finances in line with the aims set out in the constitution.
● Will uphold the Association’s values in ethical breeding, good gene pool management, professionalism, integrity and ensuring that it is heading towards the aims set out in the constitution and the current breeding strategy document.
● Will aim to keep all Gold and Breeder members up to date with the latest actions / events / improvements and news regarding the Association’s work.
● Take reasonable steps to ensure that the code of ethics is being adhered to.
Breach of these provisions may result in expulsion from club membership, suspension and/or disciplinary action by the Northern Inuit Association and/or reporting to the relevant authorities for legal action, as appropriate. Depending on the type of breach, those penalties will be decided on by the Committee taking into account the severity of the breach. If a Member, Breeder or Committee Officer has ever received two written warnings during the whole time of their membership they will be expelled following a third breach. If a Committee Officer breaches the code of ethics he / she will be excluded from the penalty decision making process.
Current health testing required to be performed on any dog before a decision is made for him / her to be bred from and accepted to the Northern Inuit Association gene pool. Please note that these might change as a result of updates within the health records:
● British Veterinary Association hip and elbow scoring
Current average for the breed is 12 in total for hips and 0 for elbows. The dog / bitch cannot be younger than 1 year of age at the time of the x-rays being performed. If any dog / bitch is scored higher than the current breed average (or more than 8 on either side in terms of hips) then they will undergo an assessment from at least 3 members of the Association committee as to whether they are suitable to be bred from, what they are contributing to the breeding strategy and their conformation to the breed standard. If approved, then a test mating will be performed and random selection of puppies tested under the BVA scheme.
● British Veterinary Association eye testing scheme
Tests cannot be performed on the dog / bitch under 1 year of age and the results have to be “clear” for all breeding dogs.
● Degenerative Myelopathy
If one of the parents is a carrier of this gene then the dog / bitch must be tested for this disease. Any resulting carriers have to be matched with other clear dogs / bitches. No carrier to carrier and carrier to affected mating will ever be permitted.
● Oculoskeletal dysplasia
OSD3 mutation has to be tested for if any of the parents of the dog / bitch are carriers and any carriers have to be matched to a clear dog / bitch. No carrier to carrier and carrier to affected mating will ever be permitted.
In addition to the above, the below are health tests recommended and encouraged to be performed by the breeders:
● Genetic profiling
All breeders are encouraged to perform a full genetic screening panel on their breeding dogs eg. through Embark, MydogDNA or other available genetic testing lab of their choice. Embark is a preferred provider due to the depth of testing and ability to extract the data into other programmes. If genetic profiling is performed then the results are required to be sent to the Committee and Health Officer for evaluation and addition to the pedigree database. These are fantastic tools and, when used alongside other health and pedigree information by the breeders, can really enhance the overall breeding decisions made and contribute to the gene pool management going forward.
● Glaucoma eye test
Breeders are encouraged, where possible, to perform gonioscopy testing on their dogs at least once through the dog’s life.
● Annual eye testing
Breeders are encouraged to test their dogs annually (or before a mating takes place if more than a year has passed from the last eye test) to ensure there is no development of any new diseases through the dog’s life.