I asked a breeder why they breed their dogs, and this is the answer I got what do you think? ************************
There are a number of reasons I chose to breed Lucy, perhaps none of which totally and 100% 'justify' the deed in this day and age of so many 'unwanted' animals that get put to sleep daily.
1) I've said for years I wanted to have a litter of pups.
2) I 10+ year goal of raising and breeding show boxer and developing my own 'line' that is so damned healthy and solid/good looking that everyone wants that 'line'.... something that stands out above all the rest.
3) Love of animals and baby animals? Not really a reson Ibred, but something I am learning about me.
4) Desire to work with animals 100%, to own a farm, live on my own efforts (not employed by this sick world, I'm in a bad mood today and terrible sinus headache on top of it). Thoughts of possibly doing so with aid of resources from raising a few animals. I personally have problems and ethical issues with this, so this is a test of how I TRULY feel about this issue.
5) A need/desire to buy land in country so all of us (dogs and horses) can be in the same location. I can sell my house 'as is' but I lose at least $40K in equity vs if I finish a few incompleted projects on the home for under $5-10K.
So, bottom line: an effort to make some $$$$ for larger bigger picture goal for ALL of us (animals and me).
Is doing it for financial gain a good enough reason to breed? No. It's a test of who I AM as well and I DO have struggles with it.
So, that's it in a nutshell... and perhaps you think less of me for it. I kind of think people should, really.
But, I do know that I want the animals to be in GOOD and PERMANENT homes and will NOT sacrifice that knowingly for the sake of 'cash'. A LIFE is a LIFE! And money cannot buy that nor can my conscious accept Life=cash only. SO, hjave to be good homes. ******************* She's selling Boxers and although some of this sounds good, she did no genetic testing and didnt warn or tell me about the health problems with the breed. Like 1 in 5 boxers have heart problems. From our talks she doesnt seem to know much about Boxers. I felt I knew more and I've never had one. Is this someone with good intentions bad decisions? What about the money thing? Shes trying to make money to buy land. She's selling her Boxers for $800. Kinda high if you ask me.
Desire to work with animals 100%, to own a farm, live on my own efforts (not employed by this sick world, I'm in a bad mood today and terrible sinus headache on top of it). Thoughts of possibly doing so with aid of resources from raising a few animals. I personally have problems and ethical issues with this, so this is a test of how I TRULY feel about this issue. ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
this alone would turn me off. i dont care how bad you feel or what your views are in this world. i dont want to hear them. seems like she has a few personal problems she is trying to cure by breeding her dogs for money.
Not good at all I would say. If you feel you know more then a breeder thats usually a turn off and breeding for money. I don't see making money on them as bad, you always sell dogs for a price and its usually not a profit but and using that money to go back into the dogs is the right thing to do, but using them to make a profit is different extra cash is different then selling your quality pups at a reasonable price. How many CHs have they owned/bred if they have been in for 10 years? I think this is a really high price for what they are producing and sounds like the usual claims of a person who doesn't really show just breeds and says they are show dogs and one who talks about how good and healthy and wonderful their dogs line is when its all empty claims. $800 seems very high from a breeder like this. If you want beter quality I would pay that (or more) to a different breeder, if you are comfortable with a breeder like this I would find it cheaper and not give into someone peddling high priced although I don't really agree with any breeders like this the ones who "overcharge" are worse.
Hey, I raise boxers too, and I just want to dispell the myth of health testing. The trueth is most people don't get health testing done, and that doesn't mean you are getting a bad puppy. If the parents ARE tested does NOT guarantee that every pup in the litter will be free of genetic problems. Period--ask a VET. The majority of people are LYING if they are staying that they are getting OFA health testing on boxers, and most other breeds too. Go to the official OFA website like I did, and look at the numbers. They don't lie. Heart and cancer are the primary problems with boxers but only 888 heart evaluations have been done SINCE 1974!!!!!!!!!!!! This breed has been ranked #7 for years and registered over 37,700 pups with AKC alone last year. Also boxers are ranked #67th as far as hips, and I have never heard of any boxers in my area having dysplasia. My vet does not feel that it is necessary for boxers to be tested. Furthermore, I will never put my dogs under general anesthesia just for the sake of doing a hip test they don't need just because of hype and it being the 'in thing' to say was done. Again, there have only been 3671 boxers to EVER have had hip testing done with OFA. I am sure some will say, well we get the testing done, but don't register with OFA. Why wouldn't you register with OFA after you bothered to get the testing done? I would ask to see the testing results and call to check with the vet who did the proceedure. I don't think the VAST majority of breeders are doing any testing other than pre-breeding exams....if you are lucky. Pre-breeding exams just check to see if the bitch has no super major problems which would keep her from bearing puppies. Please look at the total situation, how long has this person been breeding? Where do they keep their dogs? Do they have vet references? GO VISIT, before you buy. Don't base 'good breeder' 'bad breeder' on genetic testing alone.The flip side is that they may health test and have dogs that look nothing like the breed standard and crappy personalities (which are also PARTIALLY genetic).
I thnk that if you look at the stats and data feature of http://www.offa.org it gives a better idea of what testing should be done.
Since Canine Hip Dysplasia was specifically emntioned, I will use it as an example. Despite the fact that many don't test for it, according to OFA data, 10.9% of all boxers that have had hip x-rays done are coming out as dysplastic. To me, that's not a small percentage. By comparison, thyroid problems are serious too. 13.6% of dogs tested for thyroid are abnormal.
Also, only 3.3% of boxers tested had excellent hips. That's not very high. Compare this to labrador retrievers. In labs OFA hips is taken very seriously. THey rank 72 wth 12.4% coming back as dysplastic. But on the opposite end, 16.7% have excellent hips. I Know far far more labs were tested, but still, how are you actually going to know if there's a problem unless you are doing hte testing?
***Edited By: Minniyar on 5/14/2005 10:27:26 AM*** Reason: add
The sample population of hip dysplasia is too low to tell. 3,671 boxers in 30 years... and of those 10.9% are dysplasic. That is barely 100 per year being tested. With that, if several large breeders that did have a problem with their lines had all of their dogs tested they could skew the numbers for the entire breed. This may or may not be truely indicitive of actual numbers for boxers. Again, in my area I have never heard of dyplasia being a problem. Though I don't know if it is fact- I have heard that boxers in the Southern States have more dysplasia problems. Dysplasia in ANY breed is NOT due to genetics alone, but other factors such as nutrition and growth rate. I also stand by the fact that you can get every genetic test in known for parents and STILL come out with a problem puppy- it does not guarantee anything other than the parents are healthy. It is just lowering the chance that the puppy will not have problems. I find the OFA numbers fairly odd anyway since boxers do have significant problems with heart murmurs and off the 888 tested in the past 30 years (read less than 30 per year) 97.2% were normal, 2.2% equivical and only .7% affected. That seems very low to me and I would guess the actual number of heart problems in the breed to be much higher. The next OFA sponsored clininc in my area is in October, if I get my 15 adults heart tested as planned it could TOTALLY skew the numbers based on my bloodline alone-- but that wouldn't mean that boxers all over the country are more or less healthy. Other than the labradors for hip dysplasia- which had the highest test numbers, and they were only 166,501 evals done in the last 30 years and labs register over 146,692 puppies in 2004 alone with AKC. My whole point is the VAST majoirty of people don't do genetic testing and testing does not guarantee perfect puppies. Nor does it make breeders that do not test irresponsible, unehtical, money hungery, uncaring, don't take care of their dogs, puppymill etc... I know of many Ch or pointed show boxers in my area that come from strictly show people that do not have testing done, and these are some of the finest examples of the breed in the country. I would rather breed my bitch with an untested Champion than a genetic tested dog that had otherwise poor breeding and physical flaws.
I dont think that because everyone else doesnt do it I shouldnt. I also dont think that If the parents were tested I'd have a healthy pup for sure. I think It would show that the breeder took the time to find out if she was breeding health sound bitch and sire, increasing the chances for the pups. Just think If people did It would really help. Of course this is the real world and I know people wont, but when looking for a pet its something I look for. In this breed I think atleast Heart testing should be done. Its a big problem with the breed. As for this woman I just found it odd that she said she was really responsible and took all the steps to make sure she was breeding right but no genetic testing. She also talks a good game but when ask questions she gives answers that show she doesnt know what she's doing. I just wonder how much research she did before she jumped into this. And for $800.... what would make her sell at that price point? Thats a bit high. If you look most Boxers go for 400-600.
She's selling her pups as fathersdays specials, Using the words rare colors,
I think I figured her out. She's not a bad person she's just misguided a little .
Okay, I think testing is important and with some breeds there are certain tests that should be done in order to determine if a dog should be bred (or can be without passing on genetic problems in large numbers).
HOWEVER - I think one of the biggest downsides to testing is that it is allowing novice breeders to start breeding, saying they have healthy dogs, when all they have done is a couple of odd tests. Does it matter if your dog has excellent hips if they are going to pass on seizure disorders to a good majority of their puppies?
I think testing is great but breeders that just do the tests and don't do any research into the background of their dogs are lazy and are often the ones saying that breeders that don't test are irresponsible. There are hundreds of genetic problems that there is no test for. There are dozens of tests that can be done that don't get done on every breed because most breeders just do the "breed specific" ones. Shelties are often Thyroid tested, but almost never heart tested. What if your dog doesn't have a thyroid problem but does have a tendency to pass on heart problems?
I did things the hard way and actually researched each of my dogs before deciding to breed them. I got them from breeders who were willing to not only tell me all about the problems they had had with their lines, but also referred me to their breeders, to folks that purchased dogs from them as pet and breeders. I spoke to folks who had brothers, cousins, aunts, neices, great uncles. It was a heck of a lot of work - but it showed me that the occurance of major health issues is low in my line (because I couldn't find any cases of major issues - that doesn't mean they aren't there, it just means I couldn't find them).
Every breeder needs to be aware of the background of their dogs - not only for health issues but also for conformation and temperament issues. I want to know if a great uncle of one of my dogs had aggression problems before I breed them. Testing is not fool proof (as alicat said as well). Two OFA excellent dogs can have a hip displaystic offspring. It happens. Mother Nature doesn't always play by our rules and genetics will do what they want.
I also think that sometimes testing gives pet owners a false sense of security that they are getting a healthy dog - no matter what. (Oh my breeder tests for several different things so my dog will not have problems - and then the dog gets something off the wall like Cushing Disease that wasn't tested for) It easy to say "I test" - and very difficult for most breeders to specific that "I test my hips - but that doesn't mean your dog isn't at risk for a skin disorder".
My personal opinion - I won't purchase a dog from a breeder that has less than a 2 year health guarantee and I also want to know that IF I get a dog that develops a problem that I won't be getting a replacement puppy from the same parents. One year health guarantees are the most pointless thing I have ever seen. Most major defects don't become apparent until after a year. Most hip displastic dogs don't show signs until at least 18 months. Luxating Patella is not apparent until about that time as well. There is a reason that they won't let you test for these things until 2 years of age. So a 1 year guarantee is the breeders way of saying "I'll stand behind my dog for a year and only on defects that basically will leave your dog paralyzed and cost you thousands of dollars". I want a breeder to tell me that "I stand behind my dogs NO MATTER WHAT (provided that the dog is well cared for - obviously)". I hate health guarantees that say "I only cover this and this and this. Period". I actually looked a breeder in the eye and said "so you only cover defects that you have read about and not the ones that you aren't educated about".
And as far as "Why some breeders have hips X-rayed but don't submit to the OFA". The X-ray costs money to start with. Then it's $200 bucks to submit to the OFA. I'm pretty comfortable with my vet examining the X-ray and letting me know what they say. Why do you think breeders who have all their testing done ask an arm and a leg for a puppy? Because they have so much money invested into the parents. Not a bad thing. But the average Joe can't afford $800-1000 for a pet. They don't see the logic in insuring that they won't have huge vet bills. They just see the initial dollar signs - or most of them do. It took me starting to breed myself before I understood the difference. I just bought a $1000 Australian Shepherd puppy last winter. She has a 3 year health guarantee (no questions asked, cover everything known to man as long as you can provide veterinary proof) a gorgeous pedigree, hip X-rayed parents, the breeder provided references from 9 previous buyers from the last 8 years (ranging from a buyer that adopted a puppy from her 8 years ago to one that had just gotten their puppy a month earlier)...
And I am going to add in here as well that it doesn't matter how healthy your dog is physically if it's temperament is poor. I'd rather have a dog with diabetes or thyroid problems that has incredible temperament than a healthy dog that is a nut case. Temperament is genetic. So Mom and Dad, and Grandma and Grandpa, and so on... had better be the world's greatest examples of the breed in the temperament area. I also want a dog from a breeder that has hands on and socializes their puppies well - and I want to know what they do and HOW MUCH time is spent with the puppies. I don't want a dog raised in a barn - or in someone's bedroom. I want one that grew up in a clean, safe, stimulating environment. And I want the breeder to either show it to me, or provide pictures and I want it explained in detail.
Raising puppies should never be compared to raising livestock. period. You want a breeder that lives and breathes for THEIR dogs (and they better be willing to stand behind their puppies for the rest of the puppy's lives). Mine are my kids, and treated as such. In fact, I wouldn't doubt that I treat my dogs better than some folks treat their kids. :) There are awesome breeders out there! Expect to wait for a puppy (for at least 1 month - and as long as a year. 4-6 months is reasonable) because you want a breeder that has a demand for their puppies. You want a breeder with a wait list. And you want a breeder that is equally concerned about what YOU want and what you have to offer their puppies. I personally value communication from a breeder as a huge asset. My Aussie breeder answered all of my questions. She returned phone calls and e-mails within 24 hours - and still does months later. Don't settle for a breeder that you have doubts about!!!
IcyHound - is it really only $35 to submit to the OFA? When I printed off the cost chart for each test that they offer about 2 years ago it was right around $200 a submission on hips if you only did one dog at a time. I know they give a big price break when you test multiple dogs. Do you happen to have the link to the cost break down? I would be interested in looking at it again (I can find it myself, but wondered if you had it already). I don't doubt that I may be off on my figure. I may reconsider having my results submitted. I know CERF testing is cheaper. I can have mine done for $23 a dog from an opthalmoligist (sp?) that comes up from Denver every 3 months. Thanks!
I was just about ot post the same thing Icyhound. And if you do hips/elbows together, it's only $35. I don't think $30 for a one time submission to the OFA database (not $200, good lord that's outrageous) is too much to ask.
Thanks for the link! I wonder if I wasn't including the cost of X-rays and such when that figure stuck in my head? I'll definitely have to start submitting my X-rays to the OFA. With that new knowledge I then agree that it's kind of pointless to have hips X-rayed and then not submit the results. Thank you people with more knowledge than me. :)