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Breeder Education Program

The mission of the Breeder Education Committee is to assist Newfoundland breeders and potential Newfoundland breeders by providing access to on-going education utilizing breeder education forums and outreach programs.

A Breeder Education Mentor Program has been developed as one aspect of the outreach programs. Qualified NCA members work with novice and potential breeders using whatever means of communication best suits the needs of the person or persons requesting mentoring and the style of the NCA member doing the mentoring. Telephone calls, e-mails, or personal contact are some of the ways the mentoring is accomplished. Mentoring services are available to both NCA affiliated and non-affiliated breeders.

Potential users may choose a mentor from the geographical listing of mentors

Featured Article:


It has been said that co-ownership agreements are only as good as the people who make them. They can be wonderful, or turn into your worst nightmare.

From a breeder’s perspective, there are many reasons for placing a promising show prospect on a co-ownership agreement, especially when that buyer is acquiring their first show puppy. With this arrangement, the breeder can maintain some control over that puppy’s show career and eventually its contributions in a breeding program, helping the new owner learn along the way. For breeders who have just too many dogs at home, it allows them to place a puppy with someone else while reaping the advantages of co-owning it. Most breeders require that the dog be shown to its championship, and it is not unusual for them to also request a puppy back when a bitch is bred or to use a dog the co-own at stud at no charge or a reduced fee. Some put more stringent requirements in their agreements – from additional performance titles the dog must obtain, total control of the dog’s stud career or, in the case of a bitch, additional puppies back from each litter the bitch whelps. The stipulations can seem endless.

On the other hand, the buyer can be at a great advantage with a co-ownership agreement if it is a fair and reasonable one. The buyer can learn from a breeder who has years of experience in and out of the show ring and whelping box. For those buyers not adept in handling their own dog in the show ring, the breeder usually has the expertise to show the dog themselves. The breeder usually has vast knowledge of the pedigrees involved in each of their dogs’ lineages; the pedigree is one of the best sources to turn to when it comes to the eventual breeding of the dog. When puppies are born, their breeder can be an excellent source of help in making sure that all resulting puppies are placed in good homes. Many lifetime friendships have been forged and partnerships created through co-owning a dog.

But buyer beware! For each successful co-ownership agreement made, there are dozens that end up in litigation, ruined friendships and a loss of love for the sport.

Before you sign on that dotted line, make sure you thoroughly understand all of the clauses that come with the ownership of your new puppy. Don’t assume anything! Ask questions if you don’t understand any part of the agreement. If you find something you absolutely cannot live with, be honest with the breeder that you have reservations. If it can’t be changed to your satisfaction, don’t sign it – even if it means having to forego acquiring a particular puppy!

Be careful and understand the document you are being asked to sign in exchange for that incredible bundle of love.

Copied with permission of the author Susan B. Lybrand, Bearded Collie breeder. Originally published in the Bearded Collie column of the American Kennel Club Gazette, December 2001. Submitted by Betty Mc Donnell, Kilyka Newfoundlands


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