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No AKC Papers, No Puppy

No AKC Papers? No Puppy!


If you buy a purebred dog that you’re told is eligible for registration with the American Kennel Club (AKC) at the time of purchase, you are entitled to receive a registration application form from the seller, which will enable you to register your dog. If the registration application is not available at the time you acquire your dog, the seller must provide a signed bill of sale and full identification of your dog in writing.


  • Breed of dog
  • Date of birth of the dog you’re acquiring
  • Sex of dog, color and markings
  • Registered name and number of the dog’s sire (father) and dam (mother)
  • AKC litter number, if available. Your dog is not eligible for registration until the Litter is registered.
  • Name of breeder
  • Date of sale or delivery
  • Signature of seller
Although shows or obedience and performance events may not be in your current plans, you may later decide to participate in one of the many AKC events. To participate, your dog must be AKC-registered. AKC rules require that your dog be registered within 12 months of the date the litter is registered. Late registration may be considered, but a penalty is imposed.

When acquiring a purebred dog that is eligible for AKC registration, don’t be misled by promises of “papers” to come later. Demand a registration application form or proper identification in writing as described above. If neither is supplied, don’t buy the dog!