What is a pedigree dog?

A pedigree dog is one born from two dogs of the same breed, and who's also registered with a recognised club or society that maintains a register for dogs of that breed. There are a number of pedigree dog registration schemes, of which the Kennel Club is the most well known. Purebred dogs are similar, but they aren't registered with the Kennel Club or other registration schemes.

What does Kennel Club registered mean, and does it matter if a puppy isn't registered?

The Kennel Club's registration system is simply a record of a puppy's birth. Around 250,000 puppies are registered on the Kennel Club breed register every year. Being Kennel Club registered doesn't mean that a dog comes from a responsible breeder nor will it guarantee that you're buying a healthy, happy puppy


We believe the term 'Kennel Club registered' is being used by breeders and traders as a marketing tool for selling puppies because they know people believe it stands for quality. Whatever type of puppy you¿re buying, it¿s important to be puppy smart...

Buying a pedigree dog

Many dogs have been bred to look a certain way and now suffer from serious health and welfare issues because of it. It's therefore important to choose a dog that's free from exaggerated features and inherited diseases. If you're buying a pedigree dog, remember:

  • Read up on the characteristics: if you're looking for a particular breed, you can find out about the character traits and health traits typically associated with them. However, every dog is unique and their behaviour depends on many other contributing factors.
  • Choose your breeder carefully - just because you're buying a pedigree dog, it doesn't mean that the person you¿re buying from is a responsible breeder.

To help ensure you're buying a healthy puppy from a reputable breeder, we've put together a useful guide that covers everything from finding the puppy that's right for you to what questions to ask the breeder. Read our advice on buying a puppy.

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