IWCA Policies

Policy and Procedure Chair

Bev Stobart

These policies have been established at IWCA Board meetings or at General Membership meetings in order to clarify and augment the By-Laws. A date in parentheses (if one appears) after an item represents the Board Meeting or Annual General Meeting at which the policies were voted into effect. This is intended to be a living document with updates as new policies are established. New policies will be published in the minutes of Board Meetings and AGMs, and updates to this document may be published as needed.

If you, as a member, feel that any policy needs to be changed or added, a written proposal should be submitted to the Secretary and the chairman of the policy committee. Policies are not intended to override or alter any of the By-Laws.

ARTICLE I: Name and Objects


No member shall be paid for their services to the club. (10/05/2013)

ARTICLE II: Membership

Membership Committee

  • Receive applications for membership in the club. Provide list of applicants to the secretary and to the editor of Harp & Hound for publication, and receive resulting letters of comment.
  • The membership chairman will keep files of membership applications. (09/23/1989)
  • New associate members are sent the most recent available copy of the Harp & Hound. (7/30/2016)
  • Associate memberships are not transferable. (01/22/2001)
  • Retain the procedure of charging for the IWCA membership list except for current members of the Board who shall receive it free of charge beginning in 2013. (01/19/2013)
  • It is desirable for those applying for active membership be an associate member for at least two years. (01/19/2013)
  • If an applicant is admitted to membership at the Fall meeting, his or her dues will be considered paid for the following year. (1/16/2016)
  • Sponsors of applicants for Active membership may send letters of recommendation without having signed the original application. (07/30/2016)

ARTICLE IV: Directors and Officers

SECTION 1. (a) Board of Directors

To adopt the latest edition of Robert's Rules of Order for IWCA Board meetings. (02/12/2010)

SECTION 2. Officers. (c) The Secretary

  • Any member who does not want their address published on the membership list should send that request, in writing, to the club secretary. (09/28/1986)
  • The Board minutes will be published on the website within 30 days of the Board meeting and in the next Harp & Hound (07/30/2016). If there is to be a general mailing it will be sent out to arrive thirty (30) days before the next Board meeting.

Succession of Officers

Three (3) positions are critical to the ongoing function of the IWCA, Inc.; President, Secretary and Treasurer. The By-Laws provide for a successor to the President. This policy establishes the means to replace the Secretary and Treasurer should they become unavailable. The interim back-up for the Secretary shall be the second (2nd) Vice President. The interim back-up for the Treasurer shall be the third (3rd) Board member of the Finance Committee, i.e., the individual that is not the President or Treasurer. This policy will become effective immediately. (01/19/2013)

ARTICLE V: The Club Year, Voting, Nominations, Elections

SECTION 3. Annual Election

Nomination of Judges for IWCA Competitive Events

  • The Board will solicit recommendations from Active Members for the Conformation and Sweepstakes Judges. (01/14/2017)
  • There must be 10 (ten) years between a judge’s National judging assignments, effective in 2017. (02/01/2014)

Election Policies

  • Ballots are to be sent to a CPA firm, and delivered to the tellers at the AGM. (06/1997)
  • In the eventuality of a tie for First Vice-President, on the basis of precedent, the winner will be decided by the toss of a coin. (04/19/1988, reaffirmed 04/18/90)
  • All election results are to be posted ASAP at show headquarters and at the show site. (05/03/1995).

ARTICLE VI: Committees

Committee Chairs - Policy for the Destruction of Documents/Materials

Unless otherwise required by bylaws or other policy, after five years, the chair of a committee may shred or properly dispose of club records. (04/29/2018)

Trophy Committee

  • All trophies purchased for the specialty will be of similar quality. (1/30/1993)
  • Challenge trophies may only be retired by an active or associate member. (02/15/1992)
  • Challenge trophies will be held by the club until retired. (05/05/1996)
  • The IWCA Founders Trophy will remain for Breeder of Best of Breed (10/26/2008)
  • Trophy Committee policy changes are to be approved by the Board. (02/12/2010)

Judges Selection Committee


Comprised of up to four (4) members. At least two (2) of the committee member must be IWCA Board members.


To oversee the selection of the conformation judge and the puppy sweepstakes judge for the IWCA National Specialty show.

Puppy Sweepstakes Judges
  • Must be 21 years or older
  • Must have owned Irish Wolfhounds for at least 10 years.
  • Must have competed or currently competes in AKC conformation show. (The AKC requires that sweepstakes judges be knowledgeable in ring procedures and expectations at AKC shows.)
  • Experienced with puppies through:
    • Whelping and raising 4 or more litters. or
    • Owning and raising at least 6 puppies from 6 months to 2 years of age.
  • Must have put a conformation championship on at least 1 Irish Wolfhound as its owner or handler.
  • Must be in good standing with the AKC, IWCA and dog community.
  • Must not have judged the IWCA National Specialty sweepstakes in the previous five (5) years
  • Performed annually.
  • Selected by the IWCA Board of directors at the winter meeting prior to the year from the specialty being selected. (Example: the 2019 National Sweepstakes judge will be selected at the 2018 winter board meeting)
  • Active (voting) members are invited to submit suggestions or nominees to the Judge's Selection Committee. Committee will verify that the nominees are willing to be considered and are eligible before presenting to the IWCA Board for selection.
  • From the eligible nominees, the Board will select three individuals and rank them 1 through 3 for contact. IWCA Secretary or President or their designee will contact each person by rank to offer the assignment as soon as practical or within 10 days of selection.

A contract will be prepared for the judge's signature and the IWCA Treasurer's signature. The contract will be sent to the judge who has accepted the assignment in 30 days from the acceptance.

Conformation Show Judges
  • American Kennel Club judge licensed to judge Irish Wolfhounds or licensed to judge Irish Wolfhounds in the country of residence
  • Must not have judged the IWCA National Specialty in the previous ten (10) years

Selected by popular vote of the Active IWCA membership. Two (2) judges are elected for the National Specialties following the vote by two (2) and three (3) years.

  • Requested from active (voting) members in the fall of even years.
  • Active members may nominate up to three (3) judges.
  • Nominations are tallied at the winter Board meeting (odd years).
  • Top five (5) nominees are placed on the ballot
  • The secretary or his/her designee will contact the five (5) nominees to request biographies for the membership voting materials.
  • Judge election ballots mailed with the membership voting materials.
  • All judges on the ballot are ranked in order of the number of votes received.
  • The judge election results will be announced at the IWCA Annual General Membership meeting following the election.
  • Within 30 days of the completion of the election, the IWCA Secretary or his/her designee will contact the judge with the most votes to their choice of one of the two years of specialty assignments.
  • The second-ranked judge will be given the opportunity to take the other year's assignment.
  • If any judge refuses, the assignment(s) will be offered to the next ranked judge(s) until the assignment is accepted.

A contract will be prepared for the judge's signature and the IWCA Treasurer's signature. The contract will be sent to the judge at least one year in advance of the specialty once the dates and locations are determined.

Junior Showmanship, Performance (lure coursing) and companion event (obedience and rally) judges will be selected by the Show Chair.

Nomination, election, and communication procedures will be maintained by the Judge's Selection
Committee chairman and documented in the IWCA Specialty Show Handbook. 4/11/2018 – submitted by Tracey Luty

Harp & Hound

The editor of the Harp & Hound shall have an advisory committee of not less than three members, two of which must be Board members. (04/28/2013)

Harp & Hound Yearbook

With the publishing of the 2013 yearbook (05/02/2016) this committee no longer exists.

Harp & Hound Advertising Policy

Only members of the Irish Wolfhound Club of America, Inc. may advertise in Harp and Hound. The Advertising Policy can be downloaded by members from the Misc Documents section of the documents archive.  (05/2014)

Legislative Committee

IWCA Legislative Committee and approved networks use the IWCA logo on official club correspondence approved by the committee chair or an approved designated alternate. (10/26/2008)


The IWCA Rescue Committee and the Irish Wolfhound Foundation will share the cost of rescue fund requests equally. (01/19/2013)

Internet Committee

The Internet Committee is responsible for managing and maintaining the website, official Facebook group, official mailing lists, and any other online "social media" accounts operating under the club's name. (04/29/2018)

The Internet Committee will report to the Board about content and usage of the website and other club-managed social media outlets. (04/29/2018)

Content updates for the website or other club-managed social media outlets must be sent to the official Internet Committee email address (, in order to document changes and allow for the first available committee member to handle the request. (04/29/2018)

The Board has the authority to remove or change all material posted on the website and all other club-managed social media outlets. (04/29/2018)

Judges' Education Committee & Members' Education Committee

These committees are now combined. The Specialty Chair for each National Specialty shall be an "ex officio" member of this committee. (07/30/2016)

ARTICLE VII: Discipline

In accordance with AKC Rules regarding Event Committees, the Show Chair will appoint an Event Hearing Committee of 3-7 Board members present prior to the start of the IWCA annual specialty. At an event, any member may prefer charges against another member for alleged misconduct prejudicial to the best interest of the club or the breed to the Show Chair, whereupon the Show Chair shall promptly notify the Event Committee as well as the President of the IWCA. If anyone on the Event Committee was present when the alleged misconduct was committed, he/she must recuse themselves from the Event Committee and will be replaced by the Show Chair as necessary. The Event Committee will hold a hearing as soon as possible to resolve the charges, preferably the same day, but prior to the end of the show. (01/19/2013)

SECTION 3. Board Hearing.

It is expected that the complainant be in attendance at a Board Hearing.


Official Business

All official IWCA business will be dated with month, day and year. (02/01/2014)

Use of Club Logo

The registered trademark artwork, more commonly known as the IWCA logo, USPTO Reg. No. 3,094,911 is to be used only on the Harp & Hound magazine, official club correspondence, show trophies, and show literature. All other usage, including fund raising, must be approved by the Board of Directors. (05/15/2011)

Memorial Fund

Donate $500 annually to the IWF in recognition of all members who have passed away in the previous year.” (2/25/2015)

Conflict of Interest and Confidentiality Policy

This policy may be downloaded by members from the Club Communications section of the documents archive. (8/30/2014)

Policy for the Destruction of Documents/Materials

Unless otherwise required by bylaws or other policy, after five years, the chair of a committee may shred or properly dispose of club records. (04/29/2018)

Use of Club Equipment

An active member of the IWCA may request to use club equipment by submitting a written request to the chair of the committee in charge of such equipment. The request will include the dates and purpose for which the equipment is needed. The borrower is responsible for pick up and return of equipment within the stated timeframe. The borrower is also responsible for the equipment to be returned in the condition it was at the time of being borrowed or repaired or replaced at their own expense. (04/29/2018)

Purina ProPlan Club Policy

The Board would like to encourage those that use Purina products to send in their weight circles and UPC codes to Purina so we may continue to earn these funds. (01/24/2015)

AKC Studbook

Any IWCA member in good standing may apply to receive the AKC Studbook (Irish Wolfhound entries only) by filling out the application on the AKC website. Please read the requirements very carefully. Do not send the application to the AKC; it must come through the IWCA Secretary. The signed application may be mailed or sent as an attachment to an e-mail to the Secretary for her to send on to the AKC. (05/24/2015)

IWCA National Specialty

Judge Replacement

  • In the event that a Judge engaged by the IWCA to judge its National Specialty is unable to fulfill his/her assignment, the Judge(s), in contracted order will be given first right of refusal. If a substitute is not established, then the results from the most recent judges’ election will be utilized, starting with the next judge on the list until the position is filled.
  • In the event that an advertised judge is unable to fulfill his/her assignment either after the opening of the show or after part of the classes have already been judged, the IWCA will substitute a judge according to the AKC Rules and Regulations, Chapter 7, Sections 10-11. (08/03/2007)

The IWCA Board of Directors shall have an opportunity to review the premium list for the National Specialty before the printing and distribution of same. (04/28/2013)

The judge may request a Ring Steward of his/her choice. The steward must be knowledgeable in AKC ring procedures. (02/01/2014)

Regional Specialties

  • The Board will approve only one (1) specialty per year for any regional specialty club. (05/18/1994)
  • Regional Specialties may not be held sooner than one month prior to the National Specialty and 30 days later than the National Specialty. Dates for Regional Specialties must be approved by the Board of Directors of the IWCA.
  • Specialties sponsored by regional clubs must be separated by 30 days if the location of the shows is within a 200 mile radius of each other. Preference for dates is to be given to the club who has the oldest AKC approved corresponding show dates. Exceptions may be considered on a case by case basis. Effective date is Jan. 1, 2007. (02/03/2006)
  • The IWCA Board may approve Regional Specialty Dates for 3 years in advance.
  • The Board may approve Regional Club Specialty applications in accordance with AKC rules. (07/30/2016)

Breeder Judges

The IWCA will consider supporting Breeder Judges at All-Breed and Group shows, on a case by case basis. (01/14/2017)

IWCA On-Line Breeder Directory

During the membership renewal period, one member/breeder of each household may complete the Breeder Directory form on the IWCA website. Space on the form will be provided to include the contact information as it would appear on the directory.

The Secretary shall forward this contact information to the IWCA webmaster. Contact information will include: Member's full name, Kennel name (optional), City, State, Telephone number (optional), Email address. Each breeder is required to sign and abide by the IWCA Standard of Behavior for Breeders.

Any Active member in good standing with the club is eligible to be listed on the online Breeder Directory. The IWCA reserves the right to remove a breeder from the on-line directory if he/she is not in good standing with the IWCA or the AKC.

Breeders will provide referrals only through the IWCA Breeder List, IWCA Contact list or the IWCA Rescue list.  Breeders will be listed alphabetically by their last name under the state in which they reside.

Each page of the Breeder directory will include a legal disclaimer to read:

The following directory of Irish Wolfhound breeders is provided by the Irish Wolfhound Club of America strictly as a public service. Listed breeders have signed the IWCA Standard of Behavior for Breeders and have authorized the publication of their names and contact information on this website and are solely responsible for the content and accuracy of their listings.

Breeders who are current IWCA members are eligible to be included in the Breeder Directory, whether or not they currently have puppies or adult dogs available for sale or placement. Please be advised that the IWCA does not inspect or monitor the facilities, breeding practices or sale, refund or return policies of its member-breeders, and therefore provides no guarantee, warranty or endorsement, express or implied, with respect to any listed breeder, or animals produced or sold by them.

This page was last updated 06/15/2019.