AKCommunicates! March 2012 Edition
AKCommunicates! March 2012
Welcome to the new AKCommunicates!, which now includes the AKC Syndicate.

In this issue:

AKC Communications
Club PR Tips & Tools
2011 AKC Registration Statistics Available for Entire U.S. and Top 25 Cities
AENC Logo In February, the Communications team unveiled AKC's Top 10 dog breeds in America based on its 2011 registration figures with an appearance on the Today Show and a press conference at AKC's New York City offices. The top five most popular breeds, the Labrador Retriever, German Shepherd, Beagle, Golden Retriever and Yorkshire Terrier were represented by puppies of each breeds, while the Rottweiler, who just moved into AKC's Top 10, was also on hand for a presentation and photos.

Making AKC Registration Statistics Work for your Club's Publicity

How do the top breeds in your city compare to the National Statistics? A list of the top breeds in the top 25 cities according to AKC's 2011 Registration Statistics is available here. If your club is a specialty club, try pitching a story about where your breed ranks in the nation.

Statistics are a great way to get the media's attention. When you can compare trends from your area to those on a national level, you're certain to pique a reporter's interest. Visit here or contact communications@akc.org to get the full registration statistics for your top 25 city.

When pitching registration statistics to media, mention breeders in your club willing to act as spokespersons or breed experts. Remember, media aren't just interested in the breeds that made the top of the list; any rare breeds in your community are sure to draw attention. Also, find some breed examples in case you're asked to appear on a local television program.
Save the Date For Responsible Dog Ownership Days This September!
Event Calendar While September seems far away, it's never too early for us to start helping you plan for an exciting AKC Responsible Dog Ownership Days event. This year, we're celebrating the program's 10th Anniversary! To celebrate, we encourage all AKC-affiliated clubs and dog-related organizations to hold a free community event publicly promoting responsible dog ownership anytime during the month of September. We'll also send participating groups a brand new kit filled with giveaways and event resources to celebrate this milestone!

Learn more here.
Social Media Corner
Stop by our Facebook page at the end of March to check out the new Timeline view! This new profile will allow us to post important dates and photos depicting AKC's rich history on Facebook.

Do you have a favorite AKC historic moment, memory or photo that we could place on the Facebook timeline? Send it to communications@akc.org.
News from AKC President, Dennis Sprung
Event Calendar This month, I am pleased to share that we now have more than 7,500 breeders enrolled in the AKC Breeder of Merit (BoM) program. Our AKC breeders have supported this program since its inception in October 2010 and I thank you for your enthusiasm. Litters reaching 100% registration have grown tremendously since 2010.

The exclusive benefits we provide to breeders include customized web banners, a frameable Certificate of Distinction and a special Breeder of Merit silver lapel pin. We've seen many of you wearing this out at shows!

Read more here.
AKC Syndicate
The AKC Syndicate provides free editorial content about all things dog for editors everywhere. If you serve as your club's newsletter editor or webmaster, the Syndicate may be a useful resource for you.

You can access it online here. The username is akcnews and the password is editor. Here are this month's additions to the Syndicate:
Quick Tip:
American Kennel Club Offers Tips on Dealing with a Dog Who is a Compulsive Kisser
Does your dog try to give your feet a bath every time you take off your shoes? While licking is a natural behavior in a puppy's litter, it sometimes continues into adulthood as a greeting, show of affection, or a means of communication. If your dog is a compulsive kisser, the American Kennel Club's (AKC®) Canine Good Citizen® Director and Certified Applied Animal Behaviorist Mary Burch, Ph.D., offers the following tips on how to help stop this behavior.

Among them:

  • Don't reinforce any licking. Until you solve the problem, don't happily fuss over the dog as it "gives kisses" to greet you. In many cases, the licking problem began with the dog giving you kisses.
  • Teach a new skill. Train your dog to do a new command that does not involve licking, but does involve getting affection and attention from you. You can teach your dog to "get your brush" and then spend time brushing your dog when she completes the command. Brushing is also a great way for you to bond with your dog.
  • Try redirecting the behavior. If your dog is a serious licker, try directing the behavior somewhere else, like going outside, throwing the ball around, or practicing some obedience skills. It's important to remember timing. You don't want to start a fun game with your dog while she's in the middle of licking - that will simply reinforce the behavior you don't want.
  • Take a time out. In serious cases, consider giving your dog a brief, two-minute time out. If she licks you and won't stop, say "no lick" and take her to the other side of the room. Put her in a down-stay and do not give her attention for the two minutes - having contact with you will reinforce the licking. After the time out, release your dog. If she starts to lick you again, repeat the process. Make sure that you still do plenty of positive activities and provide play and exercise with her.
For more information on all 174 AKC-registered dog breeds and how to care for them, visit the Meet the Breeds website.

© The American Kennel Club, Inc.
Breed of the Month
AKC MEET THE BREEDS®: Treeing Walker Coonhound
Treeing Walker Coonhound Called "the people's choice" of the coonhound breeds, the energetic Treeing Walker is perfectly suited for the task for which it was bred - tracking and treeing wild raccoons. The breed's competitive spirit makes it an ideal choice for competitive coonhound events. The breed's coat is short and glossy, yet dense enough for protection. The ideal coat should be tri-colored - white, black and tan. White may be the predominant color with black marking and tan trim; or black may be the predominant color with white marking and tan trim, such as a saddle back or blanket back. White with tan spots or white with black spots may be accepted.

Read more here.
AKC News
Public Education
New Deadline: If you are a Public Education Coordinator ordering materials for your club's show or event, please submit your Club Event Material Order Form at least 60 days in advance. This allows us sufficient time to process your order and ship the materials to arrive free of charge approximately two weeks before your event. We cannot guarantee fulfillment of orders placed less than 60 days before an event. In such cases, customers will be required to pay rush shipping charges and materials may be limited. Contact publiced@akc.org with any questions.
Kudos To...
Kudos to the following club for promoting AKC events, activities and opportunities across the country. Recognizing and utilizing your members' particular expertise and capabilities to put your own "spin" on AKC's message points helps them go even further.

Kudos to...

  • San Antonio Kennel Club San Antonio Kennel Club for their publicity blitz prior to their March show. Public Education Coordinator Murrel Purkheiser contacted the "Animals Matter" columnist at the San Antonio Express-News with information about the show and made it into the column! The cluster show dates were included along with information about public-friendly events like "Meet the Breeds" and dog show tours. They were also able to schedule a live television spot Thursday morning on the FOX 9 - 10 AM news where the crew shot some judging and two of AKC's newest breeds, the Norwegian Lundehund and the Xoloitzcuintli. Lastly, United States Congressman Lloyd Doggett and Bexar County Commissioner Tommy Adkisson presented the trophy for Best in Show. The San Antonio Kennel Club identified local contacts (newspaper pet columnist and television assignment editor), made contact and got results! Learn more about how you can promote your show here via our Spreading the Word: PR Tips and Tools booklet.

Has your club gone above and beyond in the community? Let us know at communications@akc.org and you could receive a Kudos!
Website Spotlight
Potomac Valley Samoyed Club
Potomac Valley Samoyed Club Writes webmaster Tamara Somerville:
"Since the PVSC's new website went up in May 2011, the club has experienced a surge in new member applications. If all these prospective new members to-date are ultimately voted in, they will constitute a more than 20% increase in club membership.

We have had so much success with this website that we urge other clubs to follow suit.

The website is updated frequently, links to the PVSC Facebook page (whose membership has nearly tripled, from 36 to 95) and utilizes Twitter. There is extensive use of slideshows and some video. The website also showcases AKC resources and our national parent club's online resources. The Links page is extremely comprehensive as it is meant to serve club members and the general public. Another interesting feature is the "Samantics" section which reprises a long ago newsletter masthead and is now a platform for members to write articles on a variety subjects."

Do you think your club's website could serve as an example for other clubs? If you think it deserves recognition, let us know and we could spotlight it here. Send us your website address at communications@akc.org.
Social Media Spotlight
We'd also like to start featuring clubs that have outstanding social media pages. Does your club have a fabulous Facebook page? Do you tweet regularly? Can prospective club members check out your YouTube page? Send us a link at communications@akc.org and you could see your social media page here.

Thanks to all of the clubs that routinely generate positive media coverage. If your club has an idea or success story to share, please send it to: Stephanie Smith, Club Communications Manager, American Kennel Club, 4th Floor, 260 Madison Avenue, New York, NY 10016 or send us your brag in an email to communications@akc.org. We look forward to hearing from you.


The AKC Communications Team

© 2012 American Kennel Club