Many people seem to be confused as to the purpose and difference between Limited and Full registration papers. It really is quite simple:
Limited registration is for people and dogs that are going to be pets, hunting companions, even hunt test or other AKC sanctioned event contestants. They will NOT however, be used as breeding animals.
Not because there is anything necessarily wrong with them, but because either the breeder or the owner has decided that they will not/should not produce puppies. The dog with the Limited reg. papers IS registered! The only difference is that his or her PUPS CANNOT be registered.
The dog cannot be bench (dog show) conformation shown since this is a “show case” of breeding animals only. They can enter and gain points and titles in “activity” related events, such as hunt tests, field trials, agility, fly ball, dock dog, etc…..
Limited registration came about when AKC found out that breeders were withholding registration papers from pups that went to non-breeding homes. When the new owners would apply to AKC for new papers (some doing so because they went ahead and bred their dog anyway), they found that they could not since their dog was actually still registered in the breeders name.
AKC investigated and found that the breeders were not trying to be fraudulent or mean, they were just trying to protect the breed and their breeding lines against puppy mills and back yard breeders.
AKC came up with the Limited papers to help breeders selling non-breeding dogs to the public without having to keep those people from entering activity events with their dogs.
Full Registration ~ Full reg. is for breeding stock dogs and those that are being actively shown in the bench (dog show) conformation ring. Period.
If you ARE NOT a breeder, you DO NOT need full registration on your dog. The only difference between Limited and Full reg. is that with Full registration, the papers that you get are bordered in purple instead of orange, and IF your dog has pups, they can be registered with either Full or Limited registration.
Limited registration can be changed to Full registration by the breeder once the dog has meet whatever criteria the breeder has set forth to do so.