Australian Shepherd Club of America, Please Ban Merle To Merle Breeding

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Australian Shepherd Club of America, Please Ban Merle To Merle Breeding

This petition had 30,230 supporters
Petition to
President of the Australian Shepherd Club of America Ann DeChant and

Why this petition matters

Started by Keller's Cause

The Australian Shepherd Club of America was established in 1957 as the parent club for the Australian Shepherd Breed. They are the largest single breed dog registry in North America and are currently allowing a breeding practice that creates deaf and blind puppies.

These puppies are known as double merles, and they, along with their disabilities are 100% preventable. ASCA has the power to take a stand and prevent puppies from being born with disabilities.

A double merle is created when two merle dogs are bred together. 

In a merle dog you will see a beautiful marbled coat. The merle gene takes what began as a solid coat and strips some of the color, this gives you different splotches of the original coat (black or red) along with lighter areas all throughout the coat. Merle is very flashy, beautiful, and popular. 

When this breeding occurs (merle to merle), each of the resulting offspring have a 25% chance of being a double merle. A double merle inherits the merle gene twice and because of this the marbling and stripping is doubled. The doubling of the merle gene pulls most of the color and pigment from the dog and leaves them with an almost all white coat (in most cases.) The stripping of pigment also puts these dogs at a very high risk for varying degrees of hearing and vision impairments. Many of them are born completely deaf, blind, or both.

These dogs, double merles, are so special. They are brought into the world a little different, but they don't let that slow them down. Keller's Cause and this petition exist because of my special little dog, Keller. Keller is a double merle and was born completely deaf and vision impaired. Keller was also facing death at 5 weeks old because of this. She is the inspiration behind all of this and the dogs out there like her deserve someone to speak for them. No dog should be brought into the world with preventable disabilities, no matter how much they will be loved.

Our idea for this petition stems from the United Kingdom Kennel Club and The Australian Shepherd Club of the UK. Both of these organizations have banned merle to merle breeding. If such breeding occurs, the offspring cannot be registered through their clubs. The idea behind this is that if a breeder cannot register their dogs, they will not perform such breeding.

This is a huge step in the world of dog breeding and we should take note and do the same. Breeding should occur when one is trying to improve or better the breed and that certainly cannot be accomplished with deaf and/or blind puppies.

Currently, the ASCA, recommends to avoid merle to merle breeding, or EUTHANIZE any white puppies in said breeding. This is unacceptable as no dog should be euthanized due to disabilities that were 100% preventable. Help us reach the ASCA and ask them follow behind the UK KC and ASCUK in banning merle to merle breeding.

For more information on double merles please visit:

To learn more about Keller's Cause and how we plan to change the world for double merles visit:


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