KUSA Protocol for Adopting Breed Standards

Posted in KUSA Breed Standards

Introduction & Brief History:

When the 1975 version of the KUSA Constitution was approved by Fedco, the breeds recognised were those recognised by the The Kennel Club (UK), regardless of whether there had ever been specimens of a particular breed registered or exhibited in the KUSA area of jurisdiction. The Breed Standards adopted by KUSA for the breeds in question were also those of The Kennel Club.

In 1985, Fedco resolved that, when a new breed came into the country, the Breed Standard accepted would be that of the country of origin, development or patronage and, should the majority of breeders and/or owners request it, an existing KUSA (KC) Breed Standard could be replaced by another. The enthusiasts of a few breeds opted to replace The Kennel Club Breed Standard with the country of origin Breed Standard, e.g. the Irish Kennel Club Breed Standard was adopted for the Irish Wolfhound.

This modus operandum resulted in inconsistencies in the allocation of Breed Standards to breeds which, although listed in Schedule 2, had not previously been registered by KUSA, in other words, breeds imported into South Africa for the first time. As a result, in 1995, Fedco decided to delete all the breeds listed in Schedule 2 Appendix A which had never been registered, or had not been registered in the preceding ten years, and to only “re-admit” those breeds when specimens were imported, at which time the Breed Standard of the country of origin, development or patronage would be adopted for them.

At Fedco 06-2015, it was agreed that the following introductory guideline would be placed on every Breed Standard adopted by KUSA:

A Breed Standard is the guideline which describes the ideal characteristics, temperament and appearance of a breed and ensures that the breed is fit for function, with soundness essential. Breeders and judges should at all times be mindful of features which could in any way be detrimental to the health, welfare or soundness of this breed. Only functionally and clinically healthy dogs typical of the breed are to be used for breeding.

At Fedco 12-2017, it was further agreed that the citation [*refer note below] should appear in square brackets at the end of the tail clause of all docked and/or formerly docked breeds, referring to the following footnote:

Regardless of the provisions of the current KUSA-adopted standard, docked or formerly docked breeds may be shown at all FCI- and KUSA-licensed shows in South Africa, whether their tails are docked, or natural. Under no circumstances are judges permitted to discriminate against exhibits on the grounds of docked, or natural, tails and equal consideration for awards must be given to either.

Breed Standards Committee:

At Fedco 12-2018, it was approved that a Breed Standards Committee (BSC) should be appointed to oversee matters related to Breed Standards. It was agreed that the BSC would comprise of a minimum of three Fedco members and be responsible for the recommendation and implementation of

  • Alterations and amendments to adopted Breed Standards;

· Adoption of Breed Standards for breeds not previously recognised by KUSA; and

· Substitution of Breed Standards, upon application and plausible justification.

Gérard Robinson, Lois Wilson and Carol Immelman were the first Federal Councillors to be appointed to the Breed Standards Committee.

Currently adopted Breed Standards:

All currently adopted Breed Standards remain in force until such time as application is made, with plausible justification, to change the Breed Standard to the Breed Standard of the country of origin, development or patronage or to the FCI Breed Standard for that breed. These Breed standards include:

  • All currently adopted Breed Standards of The Kennel Club (UK)
  • All currently adopted FCI Breed Standards

· All currently adopted Breed Standards of the American Kennel Club, the Canadian Kennel Club, or any other Kennel Club recognised as the country of origin, or development, for the breed in question.

Note: KUSA will never unilaterally amend or alter a Breed Standard originating from a breed’s Country of Origin or Country of Development’s Canine Controlling Body.

Amendments to Breed Standards:

KUSA automatically accepts all Breed Standard amendments received from:

  • The FCI,
  • The Kennel Club (UK), or the

· Country of Origin, Country of Patronage or Country of Development Canine Controlling Body,

except in exceptional circumstances, such as amendments contravening KUSA Regulations or Policies, or national legislation.

The only Breed Standards that KUSA can unilaterally amend are Breed Standards originating from South Africa.

The only variance from the above is that if a statement in a Breed Standard is deemed to be ambiguous or unusual, KUSA reserves the right to add an explanatory or clarificatory note in [square brackets] after the statement.

Breed Standards for newly admitted breeds:

Following the recognition, by Exco, of a breed not already listed in Schedule 2 Appendix A as required under Schedule 2 Regulation 17, it will fall to the Breed Standards Committee to recommend to Fedco which Breed Standard should be adopted for that breed. 

In the event of there being no acceptable Breed Standard in English, the Breed may be recognised, but dogs of that breed will not be eligible to enter any KUSA Breed Shows until such time as an acceptable Breed Standard in English has become available.

Docked Breeds:

It was agreed at Fedco 12-2017 that the citation [*refer note below] would be inserted at the end of the tail clause of all Breed Standards of docked or formerly docked breeds and the following footnote would be added to the bottom of the applicable Breed Standards: 

*Regardless of the provisions of the current KUSA-adopted standard, formerly docked or docked breeds may be shown at all FCI- and KUSA-licensed shows in South Africa, whether their tails are docked, or natural. Under no circumstances are judges permitted to discriminate against exhibits on the grounds of docked, or natural, tails and equal consideration for awards must be given to either.

Single Breeds with multiple varieties:

Where a single Breed Standard has been adopted for breeds with multiple varieties, distinguished by coat type and/or size, the breed varieties shall be separately listed in Schedule 2 Appendix A and the same Breed Standards shall be published for each variety on the KUSA website.

Procedure for change of origin of Breed Standards:

An application to adopt a different Breed Standard may be put forward to KUSA by one of the following:

· The Breed or Liaison Council for that Breed;

· A Specialist Breed Club or Group Club for that Breed; or

· A Member in Good Standing* of KUSA, who has dogs of the breed in his registered ownership at the time of application. 

*A current paid-up Member of KUSA who is not under suspension, or Life Member of KUSA

When the KUSA receives a request from a Club or Member to convert a currently adopted Breed Standard into another version of the Breed Standard, the procedure will be as follows:

1. The KUSA Breed Standards Committee will assess the application and either proceed with the conversion process if the application is considered justified, or reject it.

2. If the decision is to proceed with the conversion process, the KUSA Secretary will be required to prepare Survey/Referendum documentation for circulation to Breeders and Owners.

3. The Survey/Referendum documentation must include:

3.1. Complete details of the applicant and the motivation for converting to another Breed Standard;

3.2. A copy of the currently adopted Breed Standard including details of its origin – clearly marked as the Current Breed Standard;

3.3. A copy of the proposed new Breed Standard including details of its origin – clearly marked as the ProposedNew Breed Standard;

3.4. A Ballot Paper;

3.5. The closing date by which the Ballot Paper must be lodged at the KUSA Office.

4. The Ballot Paper must include the following:

4.1. A Clear explanation of the Breed Standard being considered;

4.2. A place clearly marked to vote for, or against, the proposed conversion;

4.3. A declaration that the person voting is a Member in Good Standing of KUSA and breeds, or has bred, or owned, the breed concerned.

4.4. Space for:

4.4.1. Member’s name

4.4.2. Member’s KUSA Membership Number

4.4.3. Member’s Identity Number

4.4.4. Member’s Signature

4.4.5. Date Ballot Paper is signed

4.4.6. Date the Survey Form was returned to the Secretary

5. The Secretary will submit a draft of the Survey/Referendum Form and Ballot Paper to the BSC for approval prior to circulation to Members.

6. Once approved, the Secretary will distribute the Survey/Referendum documentation by email or, where KUSA does not have an email address, by regular mail, to all Breeders and Owners of dogs of that breed registered in the last seven years , provided they are Members in Good Standing of KUSA.

7. Verification of the qualification of a Member to cast a ballot and the counting of votes will be carried out by senior staff members in the KUSA Office. No correspondence will be entered into regarding the result.

8. The result will be determined by simple majority of valid votes cast and the outcome of the ballot will be published on the KUSA website and tabled at the next meeting of the Federal Council for final ratification.

9. The result of the ballot will become effective on either on 1 January or 1 July, whichever date will allow a minimum of six (6) months’ notice of the conversion of the Breed Standard and to inform Judges.