I have done tons of research for breeders around here that will have puppies in the time frame I need and seem to be reputable.
I think I've found one. She sent me an e-mail in response to mine saying she'll have puppies in July and will let me know when they arrive. So I'm wondering, what's the next step? What's the process you take in buying from a breeder? I've never done tihs before (always rescued)and I don't know how it works. Should I meet her in advance and meet the parents to know if they're what I want?
***Edited By: pyrmom on 2/3/2007 4:52:53 AM*** Reason: *
contact her and ask to come for a visit and see her place and her dogs. meet the mom and dad dog. if the male is not there, find out who he is. spend some time interacting with her dogs and watching them. ask her if she uses a contract, a health guarantee; ask to see those. it's best if the contract has a 72 hour guarantee against parvo, distemper, and some other things. see if you can get another puppy or a refund if the puppy is unhealthy soon after adoption or dies (the times frames would be spelled out in the contract.) ask what health and genetic testing she does. if she says "none, my dogs don't need it, they are fine," that's a red flag. research what health and genetic problems there are with bichons. find out if she keeps a list and where you are on it. ask if she sells on a spay and neuter contract. ask if she shows her dogs. ask if she is involved in the breed club. ask what problems healthwise have cropped up in her line. ask how many litters she has each year. find out how many dogs she has. find out where the puppies are raised, in the home or in a kennel. ask if she requires a deposit to hold a spot for a puppy for you. if so, and you are comfortable with her, put a deposit down. i did this with my pug and lab breeders, and the pug breeder was quite impressed, and i got my puppy ahead of some other people on her list! if she is a good breeder she will be pleased and impressed you are asking all these questions. near the time the puppies are due, you can contact her and ask if the puppies have been born.
I know I sound like a broken record but here it is again. Buying a dog is an enormous responsibility. Not just on the buyer's side but also on the breeder's side as well. It is important that you take all those steps that were mentioned above. Also, don't buy a dog from someone who doesn't show. Breeders show there dogs to prove there worth to breed. It is proof of their conformation. Find out if the dog is registered and with whom. That may include ofa, akc etc. Then make sure that what they say is true! Get copies of the dog's pedigree and their medical records. Here is a link on how to buy a pure bred dog. http://www.danemist.com/ABCs/buyingapurebredpuppy.html Link "what a breeder does" http://www.danesonline.com/dcforum/DCForumID15/659.html Link "red flags" http://www.danesonline.com/cgi-bin/dcforum/dcboard.cgi?az=read_count&om=614&forum=DCForumID15&viewmode=threaded A great way to start is to go to some shows and talk with the people there. That way you will learn a great deal about the breed and the people in the community. The breed community is pretty small and you will meet plenty of people who know each other. Ask a ton of questions. Nothing is more flattering than you as a potentional adopter trying to learn more about the breed that the 'show er' loves. After going to a few shows ask about breeders and if you like a breeder there that you get along with real well then you can wait for one of his/her litters or if they are reputable they will recommend another good breeder. Just my 2 rubles worth ;0
I didn't notice her saying that she does health testing on her bichons, like CERF or OFA. Most reputable breeders announce that straight away on all the sites I've seen. I also notice she doens't have pedigrees up that show you if the dogs she's breeding are champions, which makes me suspect that they're not, and that she doesn't show her dogs. Maybe I'm wrong and they're pointed though.
These do look like beautiful dogs. I agree with the above post that is a little worried about no championships being on the site. If you are wanting a pure bred dog I would definately find one that is worth breeding and showing. These seem like nice people. I am just not certain from the website that they are great breeders.
Your breeder will probably have a whole lot of questions for you as well. Some of the questions I want answered by prospective buyers include: 1. Have you ever owned a dog before? 2. Where is that dog/s now? 3. If you lost your dog as a result of an accident what have you done that will prevent it from happening again? 4. Do you own or rent your home? -will your landlord give written permission for a dog -do your neighbours have pets, what kind? -how do your neighbours feel about you getting a dog? 5. Do you have a fenced yard? 6. What do you want to do with your dog? 7. What will you do with your dog when you are not at home? 8. Who is giving obedience classes in your area? 9. Are there any children in your household, and what ages are they? -how does your spouse/signifigant other feel about the new family member? -how do the other family members feel about it? 10. What hobbies do you have? 11. If you have had a dog before would your vet be willing to give you references? 12. What can you tell me about Goldens, Cockers, Akitas.... (insert breed of dog you are looking at)? If a person wants to purchase one of my dogs I insist that they come to me at least twice, I want to see them interact with my dogs. I talk to them several times on the phone. When it is time for puppy to go home, if the new owners live within reasonable driving distance I like to deliver puppy to see where they are going to live. If the puppy is shipped it has to be to a purchaser who is refered to me by someone I know and trust. Not all breeders are going to ask you all of these questions, some will ask less, some a whole lot more. It is a good idea to have done your homework. Best of luck finding your new furkid.
There are some great posts on this thread. I loved the links that rarelamb posted, TJRuff & Pearl posted some great questions and I agree with Minniyar that the Bichon site is a bit suspicious. The claim that they are breeding "AKC Bichon Frise" simply means that the puppies are purebred dogs of known parentage. "AKC" is not an indication of quality; it's simply an indication that the dogs are purebred. The site shows no photos of the parents, no pedigrees...nothing to indicate that the sire and dam are of sufficient quality to consider for breeding. Just as a comparison, try visiting my web site: http://www.talbothillbeagles.com. Be sure to click on the links on the "Puppies" page for information about our adoption process and about our breed. Photos, show records and parentage are given for each of our dogs. We offer information about our breed and our adoption process as well as links to other reputable breeders and related sites. Yes, you should meet with your breeder in advance and meet the parents of the litter. Ask questions about the breed and her own breeding program. Ask if she shows her dogs and if she does any health screening. Pay attention to the condition and temperament of the animals and the environment in which they're kept. Ask her about her adoption process, ask to see her contract and ask about any guarantees. Does she take back any of her puppies if they no longer have a suitable home? And.....if she's a responsible breeder, she'll take just as much care in screening her puppies' new homes.
I e-mailed her with some questions and she sent back the answers. everything seemed convincing, but two thing were odd to me. What do you think? #1 She doesn't do genetic testing on all of her dogs. #2 Some of her dogs are rescues and she won't show them because she's had bad experieces with show people and wants to sell for people who just want pets.
I don't think breeder should be breeding dogs as pets. There are plenty of pets at the shelter. Also, most breeders keep a tight circle of fellow breeders. They want to improve the breed by keeping the breeding lines from crossing. If this person were breeding quality dogs she would want to be best friends with a breeder of the same type of dog. I wouldn't buy from this person. Sounds like they are trying to make a little extra cash.
IMO - genetic testing is what a breeder does for betterment of the breed. If she has rescues and breeds them, what does she really know about the history of the dogs. And if they are rescues, I don't think she can show them anyway.
You should visit the breeder, and ask to meet the parents. Ask the breeder if you can contact any people who bought puppies from them before. Check out how clean the place is, and ask a lot of question
Yeah, this is my first experience buying from a breeder and I really want the full experience. I want to have the "perfect" puppy. I really do want the chance for once to know it's whole history. And her puppies are coming kind of late. I hoping to have one I can actually bring home in June or July. Question: Should you meet the breeder and parents before they have a litter? Please keep giivng me lots of info! It's really helping. Thanks for everything so far.
Please visit the first link I posted above if you haven't already. Here are some excerpts: " After researching the breed and finding breeders, the buyer needs to start the interviewing process. By no means should this be done via email. The buyer either should make contact by phone or in person. This is a two way street. The buyer can see and/or hear what the breeder is like and the buyer is showing the breeder how dedicated he is in his search for the right puppy. The relationship between buyer and breeder is very important. Who else will help the buyer at 3 a.m. in the morning with a puppy question? A good breeder will be available to answer all questions, day and night, on weekends and yes, even on Christmas. Be sure to familiarize yourself with the terminology. Know what a pedigree is, know what AKC stands for and know what OFA is. Ask questions if you donít understand something. If the breeder claims to show, ask to see pictures and be leery of a bunch of blue, red, yellow or white ribbons. In essence, this means nothing in the quest for a championship. The buyer should ask the breeder questions and if the breeder doesnít have the answers, the choice of that particular breeder should be reevaluated. Some of these questions should include: 1. How many years have you been involved with this breed? (Preferably over fifteen.) 2. Why did you decide this was the breed for you? 3. Do you show your dogs? How often do you attend dog shows? How long have you been showing your dogs? 4. Do you have both parents on the premises? (This is a trick question. If the sire of the litter is there and is not a champion, this was probably a convenient breeding and no research has been done on pedigrees. Run.) 5. What health tests have been done on the parents of the litter? A visit to the veterinarian last week doesnít count when it comes to health testing. (At the very minimum, OFA hips, CERF, and thyroid testing should be done. Do not accept the statement that the parents are very healthy and donít need to be tested. The breeder should be able to back up a claim of testing with certificates. Actually take the time to look at the health papers and study them.) 6. Are the sire and dam registered? (A word here about registration. American Kennel Club or AKC registration is preferred. There are other registries out there but they are less stringent about their registration procedures. Donít be taken in by the answer of ďyesĒ. Ask to see the registration papers.) 7. Is there a pedigree for the puppies that I can look at? (A good breeder will have one of these available.) 8. Are the dogs conformation champions, obedience title holders or do they have CGC (Canine Good Citizen) certificates? Are these certificates available for viewing? And if so, do the names on the certificates match the names on the registration papers? (All these things are ultimately temperament tests and very important things to consider for the future member of your family. If the breeder boasts about certain accomplishments, donít take his word for it. Have him prove it) 9. Why did you breed this litter? (If the answer to this is anything but ďI want to keep a puppyĒ, run as fast as you can. Litters of puppies are hard work and expensive to produce. Serious breeders donít breed just to have puppies. They want to continue their lines and of course want to keep a puppy to show, etc.) 10. Do you have a sales contract? Ask to see a sample. (Companion dogs should be sold on limited registration. If there is nothing in the contract about spaying and neutering, ask yourself if this is a person you want to deal with.) 11. What health warranties do you have? What is the health history of the sire and dam of the litter? What did the ancestors of the puppies die of and how long did they live? (A minimum of three years for a warranty is fair for genetic defects such as hip dysplasia and progressive retinal atrophy or PRA. Know beforehand what diseases afflict your chosen breed. Every breed has something.) 12. What happens if I canít keep this dog? (A good breeder will take the dog back at any time, no questions asked and find another home for it. The dog is the breederís responsibility for the dogís entire life. This is called a right of first refusal clause.) 13. Do you have references? Ask for names. 14. When you see the puppies, are they clean, friendly and well fed? Runny eyes or puppies that hide in the corner are indications of problems down the road such as an illness or a fear biter. Ask to see the whole litter. Donít accept the excuse that the rest of the puppies are sold and you donít really need to see them. It is very important that you do see them. Maybe there are problems with the other puppies that the breeder is trying to hide. 15. What are the temperaments of the parents like? 16. Are the puppies raised in the home? Socialization is important for a well-adjusted puppy. If the puppies are kept in a shed out in the backyard or a kennel run, thank the people for their time and drive away. 17. Is the breeder a member of the parent club for his breed or an affiliate club? These clubs have their own screening processes for membership. If the breeder claims to hold membership, ask for the name of the president of the club and check this out. 18. How does this person interact with the dogs? Kindly? Harshly? How do the dogs interact with him? Friendly? Fearful? Dogs have a sixth sense about people and observing a dogís behavior serves as an important barometer. 19. Ask other people in the breed about this person. What is the reputation of the breeder? Beware of long silences or responses like, ďI canít recommend themĒ. If you are going to deal with this breeder, he should have a sterling reputation in the breed. 20. Lastly, what is your gut feeling about this person? Trust your instincts and people skills. Be wary of the fast talker, the one who boasts extensively. If they canít provide proof to any claims, then they arenít the breeder for you. You should feel comfortable with dealing with this person because you will have a long term working relationship with him. Now itís the breederís turn. The questions you are asked may be rather pointed and personal but donít take offense. A good breeder wants to make sure you can supply a stable environment for the puppy. Breeders are sometimes leery of unmarried couples and people who rent their homes. Problems can crop up with these situations and more than likely the dog will end up going back to the breeder. Also, the breeder will ask you for references. Be wary if these things donít happen. The least favorite thing a breeder wants to hear is that you ďjustĒ want a pet. This implies that you are willing to sacrifice quality for a lower price. This will jeopardize your chances of buying a puppy from a good breeder. You need to dedicate yourself to finding the right puppy for you regardless of the price. Certainly a budget can be made and things have to be taken into account like feeding and vet expenses but think very carefully about what you really want. A healthy puppy that looks like the breed it is supposed to be will cost money. However, in the long run, it will also be a money saver. Vet expenses will be kept to a minimum over time. This dog will be a member of your family for years to come. As with anything, buying a purebred puppy is a buyer beware market. Do your homework, take your time and be careful. " Puppy visit checklist http://www.danemist.com/ABCs/checklist.html " Go to shows. You can find the location and dates for shows in your area through www.infodog.com, www.onofrio.com or www.akc.org. When you locate a show, view the judging program for specific times and ring numbers. These judging programs are usually posted the week before the show. Once at the show, look at the dogs and see which ones you like. Contact the person who has those dogs after the judging." Know before you buy link: http://www.danemist.com/ABCs/greatdanepupinfo.html The original link: http://www.danemist.com/ABCs/BuyingaPurebredPup.html Please read before you select a breeder.
I got the message back from my second breeder with the answers to those same questions. Everything she said was perfectly okay, excpet she doesn't show. She says it's expensive, but there are champions in the bloodline from previous dogs. It makes sense, since breeding AND showing I'm sure costs tons of money.
Frosty...most breeders count on the costs of showing dogs. Yes...it is expensive. Good breeders breed because they love their breed, and want to improve it. I know how many times you have read this...but good breeders don't make money...most don't even break even when you consider all the costs included in showing dogs. But that all goes with the 'good breeder' thing. Really...she should be showing her dogs. If she can't afford to show them...it kinda makes you wonder what else she can't afford. Genetic testing...vet care...OFA certification...breeding is VERY expensive. Too bad some of the good breeders couldn't make about 1/8 of the money the puppymills do.