The easiest way to tell a responsible breeder is to ask if a puppy's parents have CHIC numbers (i.e., "got CHIC?"). A CHIC number is issued by the Canine Health Information Center to dogs whose health test results are published on the CHIC web site. Each parent breed club chooses health tests that it thinks are most useful for their breed. Responsible breeders health test and make the results public.

This naturally leads to the question - in which breeds do the breeders "walk the walk" (test) ... or do they just "talk the talk" (say health testing is a good idea but do not test). As a partial answer to this question we present the tables below.

Each year the American Kennel Club publishes a ranking of breeds by popularity (most registrations). In an ideal world, the CHIC numbers issued for each breed should follow the same order. Sadly, this is not the case. See the breeds ordered by popularity table below.

Comparing the breed rank against the number of CHIC dogs is only a gross comparison. More popular breeds should have more CHIC numbers. This can make it difficult to directly compare two breeds as to how they are doing with regards to health testing. A more accurate statistic is the number of dogs that are "CHIC dogs" (both parents have a CHIC number or the dog itself has a CHIC number) at a breed's national specialty. After all, the vast majority of the dogs at a national specialty will go on to be breed. And the "best" breeders attend a national specialty. However it is time consuming to compare all the dogs at a breed's national specialty (and their parents) against the list of dogs with CHIC numbers. We have done this for a few breeds, and this will be an ongoing project of this web site. See the tables below.

We publish these results in the hopes that it will encourage more parent breed clubs to encourage health testing. The parent breed clubs that joined CHIC did so of their own free will, saying that they think health testing is a good idea. If they do not like their breed's "CHIC rank", they have only themselves to blame.