- 5 years ago
- Wedding: October 2013
I would like to take a moment to discuss a few things and maybe even answer some questions. To start off I should say that I have been fortunate enough to be given a large variety of experience when it comes to the business of selling, fostering, adopting, and training various breeds. After a post I made and after viewing posts of many others I wanted to point out something that bothers me deeply. Reputable breeders and Shelters are not enemies. Shocking right?
The difference between a backyard breeder, a puppy mill, a puppy store, and a reputable breeder.
Backyard breeder: Usually a family that realized they could make a couple extra bucks whenever their dog had puppies. Not usually forced breeding but also no spaying is done. These breeders sell to whoever has the money. Some can be slightly weaned but many ar not.
Puppy Mill: Someone who intentionally breeds their dogs on a constant and regular basis to make money. These dogs are usually not weaned at all and are often sold away from the home so that living conditions cannot be seen.
Puppy Store: A place where after filling out paper work and writing a check is good enough. Often dogs are bought on a whim and the breeds chosen are not usually researched before purchase.
Breeder: Someone that has a love for a breed or breeds and does not breed unless they are in need of a dog themselves, bitch is getting to old and is transitioning into a family dog or are in need of a new show/work dog. After chosing the best of the litter the pups are then sold to other homes.
How to tell a good breeder from a bad one:
1) Do they demand to talk to you on the phone? Most serious breeders demand to either meet or have a phone discussion with potential owners. A breeder that is not interested in trying to know you should be a red flag.
2) Did they discuss the breeds history and traits with you? Serious breeders will want to enforce the bad traits before the good ones. They want to make sure future homes know what they are getting so that problems don’t arrive later on.
3) Do they demand your living enviroment? If you have not been asked if you are a home owner/renter, how many children you have, ages of all family members, sleeping arrangements, and what type of yard you have then that is a serious red flag. Breeders want to guarentee that you have a stable and great home
4) Do they ask senario questions? If your breeder has not demanded answers to emergency situations (like divorce, moving, poverty) then that is a red flag. Breeders need to know that their breed of choice is ALWAYS taken care of.
5)Did they ask your purpose with the dog and if you are getting a companion then did they demand that it be neutered or spayed? If not then that is a red flag
6)What knowledge do they have on the breed and how much pride for it fo they host? A breeder that is ill imformed of the breed and shows little pride is a red flag.
7) Do they require you to check in with them for the remainder of the dogs life? If not then that is a red flag! Breeders want to know that THEIR dogs are well taken care of and need to inquire you from time to time about health.
8) DO you need to sign a contract with them about returning the dog? If not then run because it is not a serious breeder! Breeders do not want their dogs on the street/shelter and want to make sure that their dog will always live in a loving home. Often returned dogs are kept with breeder until suitable owners are found or they are given to the care of breed specific fostering programs.
9) What do they know about genetic issues? Every dog on earth has genetic issues and breeders work their best to keep their dogs healthy and without problems. If your breeder knows nothing about gentic health then turn away!
10) What gene pool will go into your dogs? Do they breed only their dogs? If so then this causes genetic health issues (this problem is common in backyard bred dogs). Breeders use partners to help breed their dogs so that the line remains healthy (deticated breeders can even go out of country to find a match for their bitch or sire).
11) Do they require you train your dog? Most breeders want to have obiedient lines and ask that you wean and train you dog for the first few years of it’s life.
12) How long until you take the pup home? Serious breeders tend to keep dogs longer and collecting a dog between 8-12 weeks is a good time frame to look for.
Questions to ask a breeder:
1) How do you wean your dogs? 2) What medical treatments do the pups recieve before given to homes? 3) What genetic issues does this breed carry? 4) Where are you registered so that I can look at the bitch and sires health exams? 5) How are these exams rated (meaning how does fair compare to good or excellent)? 6)Where are the pups born and where do they stay? 7) who is allowed to see the pups during the early years? 8) What diet is best to keep the breed healthy? 9) What major traits should I know about this breed? 10) How long have you been a breeder? 11) Are you a registered breeder?
Add on to that list as you see fit.
*It is also best to pick up your dog in person
Now when going to a shelter it is best to make sure that you chose a dog that you feel you can handle. Some pups can even be tramatized during early life experience. Work with the shelter to pick a dog that best fits your lifestyle. DO NOT pick a dog based on its looks alone.
If you are unsure of what breed you would like or what type of dog would work with you (hearding dogs, ect.) then consider foster care.
Many shelters use breeders for knowledge when it is needed and many breed specific dogs are taken from shelters to go back into their breed specific rescue. Understand that if you are not interested in a specific breed than it is best to rely on a shelter to find a good match for your home. However, if you have found a love for a specific breed then go to a reputable breeder or a breed specific shelter/rescue.
DO NOT give anyone a hard time for doing something responsible because purchasing from a reputable breeder is extrememly responsible and does help the amount of dogs living on the street. Both shelters and reputable breeders should be encouraged because both are fighting to stop people from purchasing dogs that were made for profit alone. There is no love in the transaction or no punishment if a family leaves behind a dollar dog. It is not ones fault if a shelter dog does not fit their needs nor is it one fault if a breeder dog does not fit their needs. The important thing is that the dog went to a home that DESPERATELY wanted it enough to work for it. Puppies are nearly always sold no matter the seller so one could argue that getting a rescue puppy is more selfish than getting a resuce dog who is mor likely to be put down. Getting dogs is a matter of creating a family and each should dictate what their family needs. If health and assurance is important than it is good to reach out to a breeder so that records of the line are accesible but if having a companion is most imporant then it is best to reach out to a dog in a shelter (so long as the breed you choose fits your nees). I have fostered, owned shelter and reputably bred dogs. I look down on neither situation. Nothing is more tragic then a dog falling into a home where it does not fit the life style.
TO each their own and neither choice in the matter is morally wrong.