Here's a quick little question for anyone. Do you think finding a puppy by way of internet is a good way? Or is it still better to look in the paper, dog mags, and other non internet places. All my dogs were gotten from breeders who posted ads in a magazine.... the internet is full of scams so I don't know if I can trust it...
I personally contacted the AKC breeder referral. I don't think I would trust someone who had to advertise in the paper. The breeders that I contacted for the most part either had a waiting list, or already had several puppies sold from litters that weren't even born! I would just wonder about someone who has to place an ad in the paper.
I sell some of my pups off our web site but we do not ship.I like meeting the people that wants one of my pups. I also like the people to come meet the sire and the dam and so they also can see how my pups are raise and to meet my other dogs.
I found my breeder (Huronbreeze!) on Hoobly - I was a little worried about scams too, but I just told myself, I'd go with my gut. After a couple emails and talking to her on the phone, I knew we could absolutely trust her. And I was right! She's the best.
What made me feel a lot better was the fact that she was close enough to drive to so we could meet her, meet the pups, not have to deal with shipping by air, etc.
I know that personally, it would be hard for me to buy a pup without meeting her first.
I guess its different for everyone. I have gotten all my Siberian Huskies through either ads on TP or the breeder listed on TP. Maybe I've been lucky. I know I've had to fill out puppy applications, two out of three times, and had to be acceptable to the breeder. The questions were all good ones and I had no qualms about answering them. I also had to give them my vets name and phone number. The breeder for one of my girls even allowed my to send the crate back to him, rather than pay for it. That was pretty nice, since I didn't have need of the crate, especially since she was going to outgrow it in a couple of months. Read, read, read and then read some more. Check those references the breeders will give. Are they current? or several years out of date? If they're out of date, WHY? Are people no longer happy with how this kennel does business? Just my opinion, but then like I said I've had very good luck with the internet and TP
I think as long as you approach it in the exact same manner as though they were local to you, you have a good chance of weeding out the bad ones. You have to ask all the questions and if they don't answer or are evasive...move on to the next one.
A great way to find ethical, reputable breeders is to join breed specific chat groups (there are tons of them on yahoo)...just make it part of your research. I've been a member of Chinese Crested groups for quite some time and because of that, if I were ever in the market for one I know exactly who I would go to. Some of the groups can be very political and not fun at all, so you just have weed out the ones that are nothing but bickering, etc.
Just because a breeder is listed with AKC referral does not mean they are ethical breeders. You still have to do your own research.
I actually only sell/place my pups through internet ads. I have placed several in the local area but I've found that advertising in the newspaper tends to mainly draw folks in that want something for nothing (want a purebred WELL BRED dog for under $300) that don't have any desire to spay/neuter their dog or pay attention to whether they are bred. BUT I live in the midwest which makes a difference. There is an abundance of puppy mills/puppy farms in the midwest where folks can get cheap, poorly bred dogs from breeders who don't care.
The key to adopting a puppy from an online breeder is to ask a ton of questions. The breeder should be knowledgable in the breed, should know their dogs, and should be willing and able to provide as many references as you would like - including a veterinarian, and multiple puppy families. I personally make a point of including at least one reference from someone who lives near by and has visited us in person so that they can tell the prospective adoptive parent what our facility, our dogs, and us are like. The breeder should provide the same care and attention to their dogs and puppies that you would (that includes the same level of vet care, food, heartworm preventative, vaccinations, toys, grooming, space, and living conditions - as well as love). A breeder that can't provide these things has too many dogs in my opinion. They shouldn't cut corners that you wouldn't cut. At the same time they should know volumes more than you know about the breed. Research some questions (make them hard!) to ask and don't settle for half way answers. ALL OF THIS IS TRUE EVEN IF YOU MEET THE BREEDER IN PERSON!!!!
One of the biggest reasons I advertise on the internet - and ship - is that I am not limited to homes within driving distance for my puppies. I want the freedom of being able to say "I am not willing to sell a puppy to you!" because I don't like the level of care the owner plans to provide (just like you should expect from a breeder, we expect our puppy families to provide the same level of care that we provide our dogs). I have only been displeased with 2 of our puppy families in the past 4 years after the puppy has gotten home.
On this same line - by being able to look at breeders hundreds of miles away you are not limiting yourself to breeders in your area that may not have what you are looking for. We just recently adopted an Australian Shepherd puppy a few months back and her breeder is in New Mexico (we are in South Dakota). She had the pedigree, the structure and the temperament that we wanted - more importantly the breeder knew what she was doing, knew her dogs, provided excellent references, an unbelievable health guarantee, and when we spoke on the phone we clicked with her (we are just started to breed Aussies and she offered to share any information we needed). She also answered our e-mails quickly and every question was answered thoroughly. The next closest breeder that we even thought was OK was a 6 hour drive for us both ways and the New Mexico breeder that we went with made her look like chopped liver. So it was an easy decision. Your area may not have a breeder that you click with, and you may be able to find one else where that you like.
Not every breeder online is scamming people. Use your common sense. If you smell something fishy then run for the hills. That's why it is important to ask lots of questions - and us reputable breeders not only understand your need to verify that we are legit, but we LOVE that you are an informed "consumer" and are not making a snap decision. I am always more inclined to place a puppy in a home where the family has asked me a list of questions first, because it shows they care. It is always nice to meet in person - BUT you still have to be careful of breeders in your immediate area because just because you can shake their hand and look them in the eye doesn't mean they know what they are doing either! I've been scammed by a breeder that lives 30 minutes from me (years ago before I started breeding) that I met three times before I adopted the puppy. Use your own judgement!
Make sure you deal with a breeder that has a contract. Ive had friends that have bought a dog online and got no dog at the time of delivery. That same friend of mine (poor thing!!) bought another dog online, got the dog but no AKC papers as promised!! So its hard to make sure you will get what you say you are going to get. I agree that buying online is more expensive, but I also believe you are dealing with higher quality breeders. You get what you pay for. I am a breeder and I use contracts, references and I always welcome anyone to my home to check it out. I sell online because selling my pups locally, farmers want my pyrs for $100. I put alot into my dogs and raising them and I too put forth a great effort to find them the right home. I will not even fly my pup if it will be a long day with long flight connections. I have had a good turnout, great families for my pups and a good time doing it!! Thats important, I do it because I love my dogs, not for the money..
I would have to say that most breeders don't advertise through AKC. Their classifieds are something fairly new. I think a better choice would be to look up the local (or not so local) breed club and ask for breeder referrals. Also look up show kennels on line for your breed of choice. Breeders of show quality also have pet quality puppies, and they come out of the same tested parents and have the same amount of time and money put into them as a show puppy. Besides the puppies we have kept for ourselves, only two puppies have gone to people that we know in town. (both for show) We don't advertise in the local paper. 6 Standard Poodle puppies have been shipped to owners from AZ., CA., IL., KY., and SC. No toys have been shipped. All the others are in Washington/Oregon and the owners have come to see/pick-up their puppies. Hope this helps!
From the "other side", as a breeder...I was able to meet with all but 2 of my pups' new "parents" (including one gentleman who flew from Conn. to S. FL to meet me, the sire & dam and "play with" the pups when they were about 9 weeks old).
There was constant communication between all of them and myself from the very begining until the pups went to their new homes. We shared pictures, pet stories and family stories for MANY weeks (a minimum of 2 months in all cases, more in most).
I had to be equally secure in the homes the pups were going to as they had to be with me. Remember, while there ARE contracts, when the pups were going to live so far away, I had to be as certain as possible that the new owners were actually going to abide by those contracts once they had possession of the pup.
AKC lisitings are great, but remember, I could just as easily have placed an ad with them, if they'd have the service as I did in posting one on TP. Assuming I had pups for sale (don't, won't), if you and I were not comfortable with one another through a regular internet ad first contact, there's no guarantee that we'd like one another any better if you found me through the AKC ads.
Be careful, even if it's someone close enough to visit. Check them out and be happy if they make the effort to do the same. That means they are more interested in the welfare of the pup than they are in making a dollar.
Hi Wolf, I bought my puppy online and even though i wouldn't trade her for the world now, I think I would use a local breeder or ad in the newspaper, if I had to do it all over again. I'd want to meet the breeder face to face, see the puppy's parents and their living conditions. I joined this site when I got Cookie and I was @ my wits end with my sick puppy. She's great now, thank God and the breeder and I have "made peace" with the situation. Like I said, I wouldn't trade my little girl for anything in the world.
Pharlane - Thanks for the offer. I'll keep it in mind. Our oldest female is just shy of a year so it will be at least a year before we are ready for a litter (have to have hips X-rayed, etc...). We have two females (a black tri and a red merle) and one male (a black tri). Shelties are our first breed (or Mom's and mine really as my parents and I have seperate houses on the same property. Mom and I are big sheltie people as we have had at least one in our lives for 20 years now, but Dad has always prefered Aussies and I have to admit I am in love with them as well now.
This has been a hot topic-what I'm about to bring up. Just because a dog is AKC does not mean you can trust the breeder or that the dog is going to be healthy-just that is the registry the breeder has chosen to use. The AKC, like any other registry, cannot provide referrence on it's breeders-it is a purebred lineage tracking and dog relations organization that tries to do it's best-but will register any dog from a breeder with proper documentation and who hasn't been in violation-this means they could be either a commercial kennel, backyard breeder, private breeder or as I hate to use the word-puppymill. I know of breeders that use only AKC for their dogs and I would never in a million years refer anyone to them-it has nothing to do with the AKC, but their personal standards. Even though the AKC site would be a good spot to start, just don't assume anything from anyone advertisting there or anywhere. I use the internet and have a website for our dogs, so I"m not critizing anyone doing that, but just want to make it clear that an ad should read Quality AKC puppies, not AKC quality puppies (this referring that since they are AKC they are better quality). Some breeders bank on the AKC or any other credible registry in selling their puppies-so look past the registry, dig deep and get to know them first and you'll find exactly what you want in a puppy! Best of luck!
One other piece of advice. I see many puppies advertised as show quality and then go on to say that the puppy is a teacup or will be a few pounds below the standard-WHAT! That's not a show quality pup. I know many breeders that will not sell a true show quality pup until they've either began their show career or are much older than 8 weeks. There may be some out there that can truly tell-a very seasoned breeder with years of experience-but I think it's a lost art for someone looking to sell an undersized dog with a hefty price tag. So be careful there and really read the breed standard, as some breeders will sell a puppy that is correct for the age, and I think that is a better way to go-even though they can change as they grow-but generally a more honest breeder. Also be sure of their deposit refund policy, health guarantee, etc.
I happen to be a breeder that sells on the internet as well as in the newspaper and in the dog magazines. I get alot of my business online. I actually prefer it as these days selling puppies from your home can be quite dangerous. I have had other breeder friends of mine that have been robbed of both there possesions and there pups. I now make sure that my husband is always home before I allow anyone to come over to look at the puppies. Anyone that contacts me from the internet and would like to pick up there puppy is always more than welcome to come just on a pre arranged visit. In addition if I sell someone a puppy locally in my state I encourage them to come visit there puppy as often as possible to help with the bonding and transition to the new home.
You do of course have to beware of people, but in general everything usually goes fine. I have bought a couple of dogs myself off the internet including out of the country and all went well.
Trust your instinct, if it dosn't feel right, pass and find another puppy. A true GOOD breeder will speak with you on the phone along with give you there address to mail the check to. Feel free to ask for references including a vet. I am always up for someone who would like to have references including my vet. Another good sign of a breeder is that they have a waiting list or puppies are sold before they are born. This means people have seen or heard about them and they like it.