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SSMF Code Of Ethics


Code of Ethics & Constitution/Bylaws

March 30, 1995, Revised September 2000

The SOUTHERN STATES MASTIFF FANCIERS requires its members to adhere to the following guidelines which constitute its Code of Ethics.  The Club also requires that members, breeders, and stud owners not aid or abet the violation of these guidelines by anyone else.  This Code details certain practices necessary to implement the objectives of the Club as outlined in its Constitution.

l.  I will consider only the betterment of the breed when breeding a bitch or allowing a breeding with any stud dog, being conscious of controlling and eliminating inherited problems.  As breeder or stud dog owner, I shall plan each breeding with the paramount intention of protecting the breed, and only when the parties involved agree the breeder is in a position and has the knowledge to give proper care to both the bitch and offspring. 

As a breeder, I will not produce more than six (6) litters, owned or co-owned , in a twenty-four (24) month period.  As a stud dog owner, I will not knowingly allow my stud dog to be used in a program which has already produced more than six (6) litters in a twenty-four (24) month period.

2.  I will not allow a bitch to be bred prior to reaching twenty-four (24) months of age; nor shall any bitch be bred after her seventh (7th) birthday. A bitch shall not be bred more than once a year unless she fails to whelp a litter, the litter is still born, or as part of a veterinarian’s recommendation for treatment of pyometria. One live puppy shall constitute a litter. I understand that a licensed veterinarian’s written recommendation for the treatment of pyometria must be received by the Recording Secretary prior to the mating for the Board’s approval.

3.  I will sell a Mastiff only to a buyers I believe to be interested in the protection of the breed and who agree in writing to provide the highest quality care for said Mastiff, including quality food, water, proper shelter from heat or cold, active companionship, appropriate exercise, socialization and professional veterinary care whenever necessary.  I will not knowingly sell or provide a Mastiff for resale, gift or prize or to a broker/agent for resale.  I will not engage in the brokering of puppies (selling or buying) except in a case that would prevent a potential rescue situation.  I understand that all such cases must be documented by a letter to the Recording Secretary.  I will not sell a Mastiff for the purpose of attack training, fighting, or any other sport detrimental to the breed and its reputation.

4.  I will not sell a puppy/adult that is sick; nor will I deliver to the buyer a puppy less than eight (8) weeks of age.  I will not ship a puppy less than ten (10) weeks of age.

5.  I will sell/place each Mastiff puppy/adult on a written contract signed by all parties. Said contract shall contain (but is not limited to):

  1. complete care/feeding instructions

  2. complete record of inoculations and worming with a recommended continuation schedule

  3. a five (5) generation pedigree on the litter

  4. a signed AKC registration or transfer unless written agreement is made with the buyer that such papers are withheld or are to follow

  5. a provision that ensures that the breeder is contacted whenever an owner can no longer keep a dog at any time in the dog’s life

  6. a requirement that the buyer have the Mastiff examined by a veterinarian within five (5) working days of the sale (or whatever is applicable in your state of  residence) to determine that the Mastiff is healthy.  If the veterinarian determines that the Mastiff is not in good health, the breeder will, upon the Mastiff’s return, refund the purchase price or replace the Mastiff.

6.  All Mastiff puppies/adults that I place or sell as pet quality will be sold or placed with a spay/neuter contract or a limited registration.

7.  I, as the breeder or seller of a Mastiff puppy/adult, agree to be responsible for the welfare of each puppy/adult I sell or place from the day it is whelped until the day it dies.  If I should find myself unable to physically take back a Mastiff that has been displaced, I will assist in the rescue and the placement of said Mastiff.  I understand that, should the breeder of record refuse to meet their obligation, the responsibility shall fall to the stud dog owner.

8.  I will show good sportsmanship at all times and in all matters relating to Mastiffs.  I will maintain the highest degree of honesty and integrity.  I will not knowingly make any misstatements in any serious discussion or promotion of my Mastiffs or the Mastiffs of any other Mastiff owner to persons not qualified to judge the facts for themselves.

We believe this Code of Ethics to be in the best interest of our breed and new Mastiff owners.  This Code of Ethics is a binding commitment required of every member of the Southern States Mastiff Fanciers and there will be no appeal process.  Failure to adhere to this Code of Ethics will be immediate grounds for fine and suspension.

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