Tue, 09/01/2020 - 5:37pm

Question of the Week

After much ado -- and some creative guesses by our readers -- AKC debuts its new comparison-shopping page.

Last weekend, the American Kennel Club sent a mysterious email entitled "Big Announcement Coming Tuesday!"

It promised to reveal a "paw-some surprise" today, plus a bonus to "the first 1,000 folks who act fast!"

Turns out the surprise is a "new product recommendation program" called Retrievist. The page on the AKC website compares everything from toys for tough chewers to dog beds, and lists pros (but no cons) for each. Every product we clicked on led to Amazon.

We're not sure what the first 1,000 people to sign up got. The email announced a "Wag + Win Sweepstakes" with a grand prize of $3,000, but the fine print says it runs through November 24. When we visited this morning, there were almost 9,000 visitors on the page, which would suggest that early-bird quota will be met pretty soon.

Retrievist (we keep wanting to type Retrieverist, which could be a problem) is "your one-stop-shop for all things dog, giving you honest reviews of what dogs like, what the experts at the AKC love, and what dog owners — like you — will enjoy," the AKC said in an email this morning. 

A couple of days ago, in advance of the announcement, we asked the dog fancy to guess what the big news might be.

Joan Yerkie of Whitehall, Michigan, came pretty close. "I don't know exactly what their big surprise will be," she wrote, "but I'd bet the farm that it will involve us paying them money for a product or service!"

Here are some of the other answers you sent us. Predictably, some are sarcastic, some are serious, and some reflect various levels of the fancy's current frustration with the kennel club.

No matter what the tone, we stress that the below are not real! (Though maybe some of them should be.)


• • •


They are going to leave the offices in NYC.

They are not going to charge recording fees for entries.

They have bought UKC.

They are opening up/buying another LLC!

They have joined up with FCI.

That's all! — Johnny Shoemaker, Las Vegas, Nevada


• • •


All the board members are going to be furloughed. They will all be replaced with women fanciers! — Arlene Grimes, Martinez, California


• • •


I think the big announcement will be that anyone will be allowed to become a Terrier judge. No experience necessary and no knowledge of Terrier breeds, either. Oh, wait! ... Never mind. Oh, and the bonus for the first thousand? They'll be given the whole Terrier group. — Karl Stearns, Mountainhome, Pennsylvania


• • •


This is truly hilarious! Love your sense of humor and of the absurd! —Gay Dunlap, Palm Desert, California


• • •


I believe they are going to announce a website that actually works and that they will be hiring back all of their hard-working employees.


I have been waiting for a registration certificate for weeks because they have one or two people doing the work of dozens. — Iva Kimmelman, Stow, Massachusetts


• • •


A Breeders Stakes (Generations) class at the AKC National Championship. — Vicki Seiler Cushman, Xenia, Ohio


• • •


AKC is pleased as punch to inform The Fancy of our new program. We encourage everyone to participate because we need more money. 

With the recent success of the virtual dog show, Rally Novice and Intermediate, Trick Dog Titles and other competitions, we have developed plans for exhibitors and dogs to share their cooperative showmanship in a show-like setting. 

Dogs will take the lead in moving their handler through a series of virtual challenges. Look for courses combining agility, barn hunt, CGC, conformation, field trials, flyball, grooming, hunt tests, obedience, Rally, scent work and tracking. It’s the best of everything! Your pawsome pal directs your progress around ten very fun stations, encouraging you to display the years of training the two have shared. No tight leads. No lagging. Lots of encouragement. 

You name it, it’s on the course! Sound fun? Sound challenging? Sound ridiculous? Sound like AKC committees at work? 

Did April Fool's Day move to September 1?

Additionally, designer dogs — that’s you, Goldendoodle owners — get bonus points. 

So get ready, it all starts in Orlando at the National Dog Show December 12 and 13, 2020. 

Invitations in the mail for qualifying teams. — Cynthia Lancaster, Lake Jackson, Texas


• • •


The AKC has decided to hire back all laid-off personnel so your phone wait time and accuracy of dog enrollments, registrations WILL be restored. You wont grow bald, gray or senile waiting to talk to the wrong representative who can’t help you, no matter the 45-minute-long wait you just endured! Be the first to register your dog with the reinstated staff to have your name included our next article you won’t see. — Lynn Vellios, Wildwood, Missouri


• • •


Doodles are going to be fully recognized as a breed with varieties. That is, Golden-doodle, Labra-doodle, Aussie-doodle, Berna-doodle, etc! — Elizabeth Pina, Magnolia, Texas


• • •


AKC has decided in its great benevolence to triple rates for litters and individual registrations. — Louise Lertora, Sonora, California


• • •


My guess is that AKC will announce some new kind of virtual dog shows to be held under their jurisdiction, with their rules, their point schedules and entry fees to be made out to and sent to none other than, you guessed it, AKC! Everyone involved in the dog sport (not to mention everyone else) is hurting financially, as well as in many other ways, from the current COVID-related lack of shows and lack of opportunity to participate in our favorite activity. I think AKC is coming out with some kind of “fix." — Lilian Barber, Lake Elsinore, California


• • •


AKC’s big announcement is the brand-new AKC authorized medallion showing that you haven't sent any money to the AKC since March. This one-time keepsake can be yours if you send money to the AKC. – Jan Simonds, Novato, California


• • •


All employees are back to work by October 1st!!!! — Nancy Stephens, Williamstown, West Virginia


• • •


The big surprise is that the first 1,000 people won’t have to pay entry fees for a year. — Ann Lettis, Staten Island, New York


• • •


Rocket launch to release Starlink satellite is scheduled for tomorrow. Internet is supposed to be more available than before to remote areas. We'll see. 

What could this mean for AKC? Faster and easier viewing of event calendar and results on their site. Not likely, that would take a miracle! A new site makeover. Yes, that's more likely. — Kathy Bube, Elizabeth, Indiana


• • •


Whatever I thought of, it would have been AKC suicide for me. — Honi Reisman, Baldwin Harbor, New York



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