American Canine Association

Updated August 2, 2021
Cardigan Welsh Corgi litter of puppies

The American Canine Association's website asserts that the organization is "the largest veterinary health tracking canine registry" in the United States. While it does serve as a registry for purebred dogs, it does not have the reputation of registries such as the American Kennel Club (AKC).

About the American Canine Association

The American Canine Association (ACA) is not affiliated with the AKC. Headquartered in Clermont, Florida, the ACA has been in operation as a canine registry since 1984. The organization is a purebred dog registry that provides a variety of services to dog owners and breeders who choose to register their dogs.

Health Tracking Registry

Health records of dogs registered with the ACA are updated and tracked every day. Part of the health-tracking service the ACA provides is documentation of congenital defects as a means of playing an active role in healthy breeding practices. This information benefits professional breeders and individuals who purchase purebred canines.

Pet Safety and Protection

The association also focuses on helping pet owners protect their registered pets. It provides microchip registration for all dogs that are signed up for a plan with the organization. Additionally, with the Worldwide Lost and Found Pet Tag program, you'll receive an identification tag with the association's phone number on it along with your dog's registration papers. Both benefits are designed to help increase the chances of a safe return home if your pet is lost.

Registrant Customer Service

When you register your dog with the ACA, you will have access to the organization's customer service center. Services are available via telephone, email, and the website. Ask-A-Vet and Ask-A-Trainer expert services are available to registered pet owners directly from the website.

Resources and Service

Owners of ACA registered dogs can request and receive information related to registration, dog care and training, details about relevant legislative matters, and more. The service center also handles veterinary health tracking and can provide registrants with referrals to qualified veterinarians.

ACA Dog Show Events

A variety of ACA-sanctioned educational events, trade shows, and dog shows are held throughout the United States every year. There are many types of shows and competitions, ranging from breed conformation to agility, field trials and more. ACA registered canines are eligible for participation in these events. A calendar of events is published online at Dog shows are held throughout the country.

How to Register With the ACA

Registering your purebred dog with the American Canine Association is easy. You can see a list of dog breeds eligible for canine registry at ACA Breeds. Assuming that your dog is eligible for registration, you'll find that submitting the necessary paperwork is quick and easy. You can fill out the registration forms online.

ACA Registration Requirements

In order to register a litter from ACA-registered parents, you need to fill out the litter registration application and send it in with your fees, which are payable online. If your pet's lineage is documented through a different registry, such as the AKC, you can apply for dual registration. When you fill out the online dual registration form, you will need to attach a three-generation certificate of pedigree along with your pet's existing registration certificate or completed ACA application form. If the dog or litter has no existing papers and you cannot prove their lineage, you cannot register a dog with the ACA. In this case, a dog can register with the International Canine Association (ICA), which simply tracks pets and does not require purebred status.

ACA Registration Fees

The ACA registration cost for a litter is $18 and the fee for registering the parents is $19 each. The cost to obtain a three-generation pedigree of your dog is $15, with an additional cost of $25 if you need express delivery.

Finding ACA Registration Status for a Dog

There is no ACA dog search on the ACA website. If you want to verify that a dog is registered with the ACA, you must either ask the breeder for a copy of the registration, or contact the ACA customer service department directly for assistance.

What Does ACA Registration Mean for a Dog?

If a dog is ACA registered, this simply means that the dog's pedigree has been submitted to the ACA for registration. It is not an indication of quality, and there is no vetting of breeders who submit registration paperwork. The ACA has developed a bad reputation compared to registries such as the AKC and is often regarded as a service for puppy mill breeders and backyard breeders.

How Is the ACA Different From the AKC?

The AKC has more stringent standards for breeders and for breeds that it accepts for registration. It has a better reputation than ACA and is the oldest registry in the United States. With the AKC, you cannot register a dog that is not the offspring of AKC-registered dogs. However, dogs from other countries are eligible for a Foreign Dog Registration if it was registered with a foreign registry and can provide a three-generation pedigree. The AKC is also more expensive, with basic registration starting at $37.99 if done via the mail or $33 online. Litters are $25 plus $2 per puppy, or $60 plus $2 per puppy for expedited service. If the litter was conceived through artificial insemination, the fee is $30 plus $2 per puppy.

What Happens if You Breed an ACA Registered Dog to an AKC Registered Dog?

The AKC will not accept the registration of a litter if both parents are not registered with the AKC. With the ACA, you can dual-register a dog and then register the litter of an AKC/ACA dual-registered dog to an ACA dog.

Additional Information About the ACA

For more information about ACA, you can submit the online contact form at, email at or call 1-800-651-8332. If you buy a puppy from a breeder who uses the ACA for registration, it's important to research them carefully. You can find a quality dog registered with the ACA, but remember that registration through the ACA is not an indicator of anything other than a dog's pedigree.

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American Canine Association