Whippet dog lies in the veterinary clinic next to a sign with a question mark and looks questioningly into the camera.

Round The Table

Question: Why did the CCC program start, and how do we know it’s not a ploy promoted by animal activists that will harm us?

Answered by: John Troyer Canine Care

The Canine Care Certified Program was created by Dr. Candace Croney at Purdue University, at the request of some Indiana dog breeders. These breeders understood that many people were not happy with what they were doing and hoped that science could help them.  They approached the Purdue leaders to find help, which they in turn introduced them to Dr. Croney, who had recently done such a thing for livestock producers in Ohio. If she created standards of care from what the science said, couldn’t everyone agree that is good for dogs? If breeders were following the most up to date science on raising healthy happy dogs, then they most certainly could not be puppy mills, right?

Now there were some rough starts in the beginning. We breeders out in the community kept hearing we should be Canine Care Certified, but all the details about what the program was and why the standards were only shared with breeders wishing to become certified didn’t reach us, so we thought it was secretive and maybe not for us. We were confused. Now keep in mind this was something we breeders asked for but many of us weren’t participating in.  That was frustrating for the Purdue team, so Dr. Croney called a meeting to see what is happening and to ask us why are we not participating? After all, this research was done and the program that we asked for had launched?  Long story short we left that meeting in awe at how hard Dr. Croney and her team had worked to create something that was proven science that would truly help dogs and puppies, breeders, and our industry. 

west highland white terrier working with microscope and test tubes in lab

So, this program has some things that might seem like it is driven by animal activists, but that is not the case. Purdue is about animal welfare, they go by science and not emotions, and when we follow those recommendations, our dogs and their puppies do better, and when they do better, we do better. This is not about trying to force us to stop breeding dogs, it is about helping us to do it well. My favorite quote from Dr. Croney is “Ask the dogs, they don’t lie.” That is so true. They don’t know how to lie. Maybe we should be more like our dogs in that way. What she means is if you want to prove that what you are doing is helping your dogs, just go look at them. Are they clean, friendly, healthy, happy? If yes, you are protecting their welfare and what you are doing with the science is working.

How can we be sure that this is true? True that the science they give us is to help us do better, and is not a plan to shut us down? I think we should not overthink this, but I do applaud breeders for considering it. My answer to that will be my own experience. My experiences with them have always done nothing but build my trust. And wow, have they earned my trust in every aspect from the research studies that my kennel has participated in to the way the 3rd party auditing for the program is conducted. This trust has gotten me so many benefits from the CCC program. Remember it is voluntary, so if at any point you are concerned, you can just drop your Canine Care Certification. I have not regretted doing this extra work for all the rewards I have seen in my dogs and puppies. 

And the customer feedback is awesome! So just trust and try it! 

What is the best flooring for a kennel?

Answered by: Jonas Lapp, Trubuilding Design

Primary Runs

Concrete. This is probably the most common of all floor types used in kennels today. We always recommend applying a sealer if using concrete. You can use a low-cost, clear sealer or if you are looking for a more durable, decorative surface, you may want to apply a poly aspartic or epoxy coating. In those applications, the floor is typically grinded to a course surface for better bonding. You can then add various flakes, chips, or other textures to the coating to give you a very nice and professional looking floor. While this is definitely more expensive than a traditional sealer, you will get much more life and beauty with it.


Typically seen in more upscale kennels, tile laid on concrete is a great option if you are looking to add a classy look to you kennel, while being able to clean easily. Keep in mind, tile is more of a hard, cold surface, and will not do well at absorbing sound. 

For maximum dog comfort, I recommend radiant floor heat to be used with tile.


This pervious flooring is commonly seen in raised pens, where the feces and urine fall to the floor or tray below. If you are considering using this product, you will need to find out if the dog law in your state allows this type of floor for primary runs. Also, when using such a product, we recommend at least a partial solid floor surface for maximum dog comfort. Planking. Vinyl deck boards or fiberglass channels make a great raised floor if you are looking for something to use in a wash-down application. This provides a comfortable surface for your dogs, while allowing drainage when washing down. Build this over a sloped floor with a presloped floor gutter, to quickly rid of any water and avoid excessive moisture in the kennel. Outside runs

Decking Boards. 

Vinyl decking is very commonly used for flooring in outside runs. Unless you are using shavings, this is my recommended floor surface for outdoor runs. Choose a decking with a semi-smooth surface, for easier cleaning. 


This works well when bedding, such as shavings, is used. When used without any bedding, your dogs are likely to get wet feet and stained legs, from stepping into puddles of urine. I do not recommend concrete unless bedding is used, or unless you have fulltime personnel in the kennel, cleaning up after the dogs. 


Like all other floor types, there are advantages and disadvantages with using gravel for your runs. Very importantly, if you do use gravel, use a smooth, rounded stone to prevent your dogs from cutting their paws. I recommend a ¾” washed stone, or similar. Smaller stones will cling to the dogs’ paws and will drag into your kennel, and unwashed stone is likely to get messy when wet.

veterinary woman auscultating a dog in clinic

What is Hormonal Imbalance?

Answered by: Revival Animal Health 800.786.4751 or visit RevivalAnimal.com

Hormones are chemicals that serve as messengers, carrying important communications through the body. When these messengers are not balanced, there are unwanted side effects such as skin problems, hair loss, increased drinking and urinating, weight loss or weight gain, weakness, lethargy and/or excessive panting. But, hormonal imbalances in breeding dogs can cause even more issues and disrupt their reproductive cycle. Hormonal imbalances can cause a female to not come into season, have split cycles, short cycles and/or low progesterone levels to cause the absorption of a litter. In males, a hormonal imbalance can impact testosterone levels, sexual vitality and libido. 

The good news, certain herbs and roots can naturally provide support for female dogs with hormonal imbalance. Breeder’s Edge® Problem Female™ is a supplement with natural herbs, roots and other ingredients to support a female’s natural reproductive hormone production and balance. A proper balance of estrogen-progesterone helps support her complete reproductive cycle so she can ovulate, breed, maintain a pregnancy and deliver a healthy litter. Problem Female™ contains Ashwaganda and Angelica Root Extract to support proper metabolic rates, Chase Tree Berry powder to help maintain a healthy estrogen-progesterone balance and Dong quai, Motherwort and Shatavari Root to support immunity and uterine tone. 

When a female is having heat cycle issues, you don’t always know the cause. In some cases, heat cycle issues stem from a B-vitamin deficiency, while other times it’s due to hormonal imbalance. Oftentimes B-complex vitamins, minerals and amino acids such as those found in Breeder’s Edge® B Strong™ help support healthy heat cycles in females. Meanwhile, for dogs with hormonal imbalance, adding Problem Female in addition to using B Strong helps support a healthy heat cycle and pregnancy. Not every female dog with heat cycle issues has hormonal imbalance and vice versa. So, knowing what to use when may be confusing. The good news is, it is safe to use both B Strong and Problem Female™ together if needed: 

  • B Strong –this may help as a blood builder to support a healthy heat cycle. 
  • Problem Female™ – when there are signs of hormonal imbalance, use to help maintain hormone production so she can get and stay pregnant.

Hormonal imbalance while she is pregnant can lead to miscarriage. That’s why maintaining hormonal balance throughout the pregnancy is important. Problem Female can safely be used during pregnancy and in combination with prenatal supplements such as, Breeder’s Edge® Oxy Mate®. 

For males, Perna mussel, DHA and amino acids L-carnitine and L-arginine support healthy production of quality sperm. Saw palmetto and sarsaparilla support hormone levels and maintain testosterone levels naturally. Ashwagandha and maca support an increase in libido and sexual vitality to get his job done. Breeder’s Edge® Problem Male™ contains all of these ingredients to help support sperm quality and help maintain hormone levels including testosterone.


What kind of questions do you ask in your questionnaire that you email to prospect buyers?

Answered By: The Dog Journal

Whenever someone first reaches out about a puppy, I answer any questions they have, and then I email them a questionnaire to fill out. This Questionnaire has very basic questions like: Do they have a good vet they work with? Do they have a plan in place for if the puppy should ever be alone? Do they have an adequate exercise plan in place? Any breed specific questions that they should be thinking about? 

The idea isn’t to make it difficult for them to buy a puppy, it’s more for making sure that they think about what’s going to still need to be taken care of before they actually make a final commitment. Also, this signals dedication. When someone takes the time to fill out a questionnaire like this, they will probably follow most other recommendations you make, which can drastically help to make the transition process smoother.

As a dog gets older, will the chances of it passing on genetic disorders and diseases increase, or doesn’t age affect that?

Answered By: PawPrint Genetics

For a female all her eggs are already formed at birth, so age doesn’t affect what genetics she passes on. For males because they continuously produce sperm, things are a little different. It is not so much that the chances increase it is just that should any of the gametes undergo point or de novo mutations (that means during that animal’s lifetime) then they may pass those on, however this is rare and not something that really affects the decision to breed one dog over another.

This is only a partial listing of the most commonly used floors. Feel free to contact us at Trubuilding Design at 717-945-3612 if you wish to go more in-depth with kennel designing. We would be happy to help you out! Jonas Lapp, Trubuilding Design

Looking For More To Read?


The Socialization Period and Process

Puppies are referred to as “neonates” during the first two weeks of life. They often sleep in a stacked heap and nurse frequently. Their eyes and ear canals are not opened. Mobility is limited as they are unable to do more than paddle with their legs and slide. Senses of smell and touch are more operational, which many scientists believe allow the puppies to maintain contact with their mother. 

What Kennel Flooring To Use

Purdue University: Kennel Space and Flooring

Dog welfare is more than just food, water, and good physical health. Several aspects of the environment can impact a dog’s welfare. Dogs have a very different sensory experience from humans.

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