I Have been a licenced breeder since 2014 and a kennel club assured breeder since 2008 .
October last year a star rating was introduced , and we were lucky enough to be rated 5 star
Heres what the kennel club say about the ratings :
The new regulations also include a star rating system. The new star rating system has been designed to both reward high performing breeding establishments and to give further help to the puppy buying public in identifying good breeders.
Licenced breeders will receive a star rating from one to five stars. Those with a five star rating will receive a three year licence, pay a lower fee and will be inspected less frequently. Those at the other end of the spectrum will only receive a one year licence and will pay a higher licence fee and will be inspected with greater frequency. The star rating that is awarded will be based on two factors: the welfare standards against which the breeder is operating (i.e. whether the breeder makes use of health tests etc), and their risk rating which is based on whether the breeder has a history of meeting these standards.
Breeders operating to higher welfare standards and who have a history of maintaining these standards should receive a higher star rating, whilst those who are operating to the minimum standards and have no compliance history should be awarded a two star rating. A one star rating will be awarded to breeders who have minor failings.
We had our inspection and handed in all our paperwork, did a meet and walk around and the inspector and her inspector friend had some fabulous points, the system itself doesn’t make perfect sense to them nor me and we debated a few things that we all felt needed improvement, but the just of it is heading in the right direction
Im personally not completely sure id feel happy being classed as high risk simply for being new, especially when breeders are being urged to have a licence, t o then be told they are high risk regardless – this is what the guidelines say :
Alongside welfare, the breeder’s compliance history will also be assessed, to determine whether the breeder is either a low risk or high risk operator, i.e. whether it should be expected the breeder will maintain their standards for the duration of their licence period.
To obtain a low risk rating breeders will need to demonstrate they have been maintaining acceptable standards for a minimum of three years. Factors that will be considered include history in meeting licensing standards, nature of complaints received and how they were dealt with and the quality of record keeping. Only compliance history which has been obtained either through local authority licensing or through a UKAS accredited scheme, such as the Kennel Club Assured Breeder Scheme, will be considered.
Breeders who haven’t held a dog breeding licence before or haven’t been members of a UKAS accredited scheme, such as the Kennel Club Assured Breeder Scheme for a minimum of three years will automatically be categorised as high risk and will not be able to gain the highest star rating at first and benefit from a three year licence duration.
I think welfare and countability need to be really taken to a higher standard, I also don’t think all of the points to become a 5 star licence holder are fair , an example of this is you can only have 1 section and never breed that bitch again, while this is ok for me, with my breeds its certainly going to mean a lot for breeds that have a much higher rate of sections, and if they decided to be 5 star and not do more than 1 section then will that effect the breed as a whole? Will it reduce numbers or bloody lines in breeds that have small, sectioned litters, rare breeds etc?
I don’t think multiple sections are good, I never have but I do think some of this licence is not as clear cut as the paperwork insists it should be
Regardless any step towards policing breeding should surely be welcomed, for nothing other than the dogs sake have a look at some of my previous owners comments on the guest book ;)