Wednesday, April 15

AKC Announces new Program for Mixed Breed Dogs

Well, folks who own mixed breed dogs and participate in dog agility, rally-o, obedience, and other dog sports will be pleased to know the AKC has decided to allow mixed breeds to compete.

Or will they be pleased after all?

AKC's proposal leaves many a bit dry in the mouth, a tad sick in the stomach, with its comparison to the racial integration of schools back in the 1960s.

Or particular note, from the AKC Program details:

2. Mixed Breed classes can only be held at standalone AKC Agility, Obedience, and Rally Events. The class could not be offered at All Breed Shows, Group Shows, or independent specialties, even if Agility, Obedience, or Rally events are being held.
a. The definition of standalone AKC Companion event is an AKC Agility, Obedience, or Rally event that is not held on the same date AND show site as an AKC all-breed show or independent specialty.

Heaven forbid our mutts are REMOTELY near a purebred dog show. We can only showcase purebred dogs, folks - mutts are shameful things we must keep swept under the rug.

3. Mixed breed dogs will compete in separate class divisions from AKC purebred dogs.
a. The club is not required to hold the classes in separate rings under separate Judges. The purebred classes can be held in the same ring, under the same Judge, as the mixed breed classes. Placements and titles will be scored and awarded separately.
b. For example, in Agility in the Regular class, all purebred dogs entered in the Regular 16 inch class will run, followed in the same ring by the mixed breed dogs entered in the Regular 16 inch class

My favorite part in this bit is that they will "allow" purebreds and mutts to have classes in the same ring (quite generous) but not at the same time. We don't want our precious purebreds getting any of those nasty mutt germs, after all.

5. Mixed breed dogs will earn different titles from purebred dogs.
a. Mixed breed dogs will earn titles with a Mixed Breed suffix (i.e. NAM-Novice Agility Mixed Breed)

I am just at a loss for words on this one. Now, in CPE agility, for example, which allows both purebreds and mutts to compete against each other (gasp!), dogs at a lower jump height that they measure into do get a slightly different title. That makes sense, because they aren't doing the same amount of work/effort as the other dogs who are in their proper jump heights. But why, oh WHY do mutts get different titles? Didn't they do the exact same thing as a purebred? Give 'em their yellow star of David! They must be singled out and kept separate from the purebreds.

And we can't have mutts competing against purebreds - because what would happen if a muggle born totally showed up the pure blood, I'm sorry, Harry Potter slip of the tongue there - what would happen if a mixed breed showed up a purebred? GASP!! Folks might go to shelters and ADOPT MUTTS to compete with!!

6. Dogs competing in the class will be eligible to earn similar (but separate) titles as purebreds, including MACH-M (Master Agility Champion Mixed Breed), OTCH-M, and RAE-M.

Again, if a dog earned a MACH, it shouldn't matter if it's a mixed breed or a $5,000 purebred. A MACH is a MACH is a MACH.

On a group I'm in, one of the members sarcastically raised the question if, at these new AKC events, the mixed breed dogs were going to have a separate bathroom area from the purebreds.

I think it's a legitimate question.

And for the record, I own two purebred dogs and three mixes. One mix does agility, as does one purebred. I had never considered doing AKC agility before (higher jump heights than CPE) and now I wouldn't touch them with a twenty foot pole.

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