Not sure where to put this, so I thought I'd just ask here…
My question is: Is it ever a good thing to see that a companion dog breeder is USDA licensed?
I frequently see this from online breeders whose practices I find to be questionable and not at all transparent. However, their websites frequently list this accreditation as a mark of integrity to their kennel. I looked up the licensing requirements (PDF file) for becoming a USDA Class A or Class B breeder, and the results were a bit disturbing to me. Basically, I see this registration as an admission that the pets being bred on site are there for the "breeder" to make a living – that is, they're there for profit.
Breeders with three or fewer breeding females are exempt from registration requirements, so the implication is that anyone with even a Class A registration, the smaller of the two, probably has more than three breeding females on site.
And breeders with a Class B registration can engage in puppy brokering and "wholesale selling," which is where we get into puppy mill territory…
Theoretically, I guess a breeder could have Class B registration because they... raise a small herd of free-range bison for dog food and only happen to have one breeding female on site. But I'm guessing that with certain breeds, or especially with non-working breeds, the likelihood of this scenario is pretty slim...?
This came up in another forum that I frequent, and I just wanted to get some feedback from Basenji folks here whom I have found to be so knowledgeable about breeding practices. I would especially be interested in hearing from dcmclcm4, whom I know has a lot of experiences with USDA auctions.
Thanks in advance.