Who sets dog breed standards?

The History of Dog Associations and Kennel Clubs


The deliberate crossing of canids with selected traits brought about the numerous dog breeds that exist today. Their wide variety made their organization and classification necessary, leading to the creation of the first kennels clubs and cynologic associations.

In 1873, The Kennel Club, which still operates in the United Kingdom, was founded. Today it recognizes 210 breeds divided into seven groups.

In 1882, two other European organizations were created: the Société Centrale Canine (SCC) in France and the Ente Nazionale della Cinofilia Italiana (ENCI) in Italy.

In 1883, the American Kennel Club was founded. This club recognizes seven groups of 173 breeds, with partial recognition for 15 breeds in the Miscellaneous class, and another 60 rare breeds registered in its Foundation Stock Service.

In 1888, the Canadian Kennel Club was formed, which recognizes 175 breeds divided into seven groups.



In 1911, a group of European countries founded the Fédération Cynologique Internationale, which today is a world canine organization located in Belgium. It has the kennel clubs of 86 countries as members, among which are Australia and South Africa.

FCI recognizes 343 breeds, each of them owned by a specific country who sets the standard of the ideal example of the breed in agreement with the FCI, who classified the breeds into 10 groups. There are 27 kennel clubs independent of the FCI among which we can find clubs in the United States, Canada, and United Kingdom.

Breeds Classification According to Different Canine AssociationsScreen Shot 2017-05-09 at 5.56.26 PM

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