Hi everyone, I have been breeding Dobermans for a couple of years. I have only sold 19 puppies and am in constant contact with the families. I have NEVER had acomplaint. I also do not crop, but leave that to my customers. On 09/06/06, I had 3 puppies cropped. 2 were flown 5 days post surgical to MA. I have recieved nothing but glowing emails from both families since. The family in question sent an email 7 days ago stating that "she is an absolute love" "no problems with her ears" - "doc has high hopes for her ears to stand." Last visit they "looked good and he did not anticipate any problems with them". NOW this woman sent me an email (unsure of date) that stated that the original box that the ears were to be taped to for 2 weeks post surgical had come off. So she decided to start "taping the ears". I told her at that time to see her vet immediately. She choose not too. She is now stating that the puppies ears are infected and have been a problem from day one. She also states that the puppy has a bacterial infection that will not go away. NONE of my other puppies ahve this problem. She also states that the puppy smells like a dog and that she has bathed it 4 times in the last 3 weeks and she can't not get rid of the "dog smell". She also states that she changed the dog food from Natural Choic Puppy Large Breed to Science Diet Adult, although the puppy is only 14 weeks old. She is now very nasty and is blaming me for her extra vet bills. She is also accusing me of deliberately misleading her. I am devasted by this. I give a one year health agreement, but the puppy must be seen by a vet within 7 days. I do not know that she did that. I do not give out bad information nor do I sell unhealthy puppies. She is implying that all these problems are my fault and that the extra vet bills should be paid by me. She states, I know it is a done deal but..." Can anyone give me advise on how to proceed? I kept the puppy 5 days post surgical to make sure she was okay, I cropped at her request, using a vet that crops Dobies from all over the country, I got a health certificate before flying the puppy. I do not feel like I did anything wrong. Should I take the puppy back? She does not want that, just the vet bills taken care of. As I said, nothing but glowing emails, last one dated 7 days ago. Now this. Please give me your thoughts. I am a new breeder and take great pride in my dogs. They are my children, and anyone who visited our site can attest to that. Thank you.
While I don't think that you're under obligation to do anything - especially since you have emails from her stating that "everything was fine", I guess if it were me I would make the offer to "buy back" the dog at the original selling price. Let's face it... you're not comfortable with the dog being with her, the dog is not being cared for properly and the woman is simply going to be frustrated. Having dogs costs money - she should have realized that BEFORE she bought the pup.
Bring your baby home and find him a home worthy of the Sweetie he is. That's just my opinion...
Now I don't breed dobies but I would think first of all the so called doggy odor she is smelling is actually the infection, second of all, when you crop ears, isn't the risk of infection mainly related to the proper care and wrapping of the ears that the dog continues to receive (or not receive)? Therefore I wouldn't think it would be the breeder's fault unless the pup actually arrived with infected ears. Unless she is experienced with proper wrapping of the ears, then she should be having a vet handle that, who would then be examining them each time for infection. And improper wrapping can cause infection.
Yes, take pup back, refund money, but I would not pay a dime of the vet bills.
***Edited By: luvmydoxys on 10/4/2006 3:20:20 PM*** Reason: add
I feel so bad for you and the pup. Sence the ears are infected couldnt they end up looking messed up?
I agree with everyone bring her home and find her a good home with someone diffrent. The doggy smell could be anything from the ears or the pup farting from being on food she cant handle or puppy breath or even just the doggy smell that comes with being a dog. My mother in laws griped about rocky smelling like a dog. He does not stink or anything honestly i dont think he smells like anything strange. but of corse he smells like a dog because he is a dog. Now rocky says "so Im a freaking dog what do you want me to smell like? Plus you dont smell so hot your self but I dont make a point to say something about it" Of corse i have to help him out because she does not under stand doggy. Maby the lady has a strange nose that hates the smell of dog.
Thank you all so very much for your kind words of support. I have asked for her back twice today and have not yet recieved a response. I went back through all my records and correspondence. She told me that she knew what she was in for before she took her home. Then once the after care work began, I started to get emails about how discouaged she was, it was alot of work. Then, 5 full days before the puppy was to go for her 2 week check up she stage one taped her ears over the sutures! Then discovered that you shouldn't do that! OMG!!!I did not remember that piece of the puzzle, and I was shocked and reminded her immediately of the proper care for the poor thing. I sent her pictures on several occasions in the 5 days of post surgical care I gave her. She was happy and healthy! I have not seen a picture of her since she went home. I have been in touch with all my other puppy familes ( I always stay in touch and make sure things are a okay!) and no one else has hasd any problems. All the beauties I sold that were cropped (6 out of 19 in 2 litters) have all been done by the same vet and not ONE complaint. And all the ears stand. I will violate whatever health guarentee I made, I just want her back. I am SO worried. My babies are my life. I have only Dobiekids and she was one of the loveist pups! Thank you for your prayers, which I know are flying heavenward. I will keep you posted. Peace! You can see her pictures at our website, NO puppies for sale! view only! Lavelledobermans.com Thank you all for a great site.
I heard from the lady this morning. She said that my response to her, with dates of emails and what was said, records of my care, what she did (very detailed, I keep detailed records of every litter and puppy) etc. Took 2 hours to write, as I wanted to be professional, not mean. She said I am starting a "cat fight" with her. I asked several times in the letter for her vets info. She did not send it. I told her that per our standard breeders agreement, I would give her a puppy from my next litter, which is what she agreed to in the health contract, as the puppy is being returned for "health" reasons. She said I am treating this puppy like "it is a piece of furniture" don't I know they have personalities????? Has she seen my website? I run a pregnancy care center and I will saddly admit that my dogs are treated better than some of the children I meet. Heck, I drive to another state just to get the treats they like! LOL!!! So again, I am starting my day upset. No crying today. I am Irish, the crying only lasts a minute, now the anger is setting in. I believe this woman wants financial compensation and I just want my puppy back. If you all are praying people - please feel free to first pray for my puppy, then for this lady! Thanks you again and I will keep you posted.
She does not want to give to give the dog back. She is probably quite attached to the dog. She wants you to pay for her vet bills becuase she thought she could handle it. Rationaly, irrationaly, or premeditatedly she is attempting to get compensation for this.
She may or may not truely belive what she is saying but she has decided that course of action. Do not forget, people lie and stick to their lies until they are almost the truth. You are an easy target as the breeder since these days breeders are bad.
You can stress about this, be devistated, cry, pray, or do whatever makes you feel better. Chances are that you will not get the dog back and that this will eventually blow over with a bitter buyer and a happy dog. They happen. How she treats you reflects a lot.
Unless you are ready to to give her cash to make her happy (some people belive breeders are made of money and you can keep pumping them for cash and it just flows out of the cash hole) or attempt to legaly get the puppy back (Prob aint going to happen) or tell her to go away, or tell her to come back when she has an actual game plan you can follow, but stressing isen't going to do anything for it now. You have a buyer attempting to make you a victim, your vicitimization is your choice.
In your contract and such does it say anything about how she has to care for the pup or something about her taking care of the ears Or anything were you can take the dog back? Honestly If you dont trust her with this pup would you trust her with another one?
Do you live close to her? If so you could try going to her house and talking with her, Maby even be able to work something out were she can keep the pup but you are able to pop in any time to check on her and at any time you find the pups living conditions to be under your standerds you can take the pup.
She messed up and didn't care for the ears right, and now she has infected ears and a vet bill. I don't know how in the world she could think that would be YOUR expense. It take all kinds I guess. I wouldn't give her a dime either, but would offer to buy the pup back. She is not feeding puppy food, so if she runs into trouble because the pup isn't getting the right nutrition is she going to want you to pay that vet bill too?
Thank you agin for all the kind words and advice. I am very explict in my contract. I sent very detailed instructions, both written and verbal. It states very clearly that we do not guarentee copping and aftercare is the sole responsibility of the new owner. But I do put them through a ton of questions before they are approved as a family. I will in the future have a puppy contract and will demand a phone call with their vet before hand. She told me she had a compatent vet, turns out she had to find one that dealt with cropping after she got the puppy home. I live in NY and they live in MA. So I can not visit in person. I also stae in my contract that I will take the dog back for major health issues. The contract was vioded becuase they did not take the puppy to the vet for a check up, as per the contract. It also states that if a health issue is found, we will take any puppy back after speaking to the vet. Hence my request for his information. You are also right about the money. I spend a fortune raising these dogs. There is not a whole lot of profit and that has been spent on winterizing. I do this because I love Dobies and believe they deserve the best. I feel it is a ministry for me, as they bless their families lives. And I do agree with the comment that people believe their own lies. Scares me! I put ethics number one in my life, I have to I work with hundreds of teens. My ehtics are everything and I do not compromise. Especially regarding my dogs. I offered to take the puppy back and refund only the cost of the puppy. I would not give her another. I will pay for the flight, which will hurt us financially, but the puppy is more important. I was disappointed that I did not get information to contact her vet. She will be responding to me again later today and I will tell her directly that she needs to tell me exactly what she wants me to do. I will NOT pay her vet bills, nor will I reimburse her for the cropping. And again, you are right, woryying and stressing is not going to help. I will not be a victim. I did nothing wrong. And have lots of evidence to prove that! She is very accusatory and could not believe I defended myself. And to say that I consider my dogs like furniture. I know more about this puppy's personallity than she does! I was with her from birth to almost 11 weeks old. She has been with them 3 weeks. I just do not like to be insulted when it comes to my dogs. Insult me personally - whatever, but not my dogs or the care I give them. I will keep you all posted and thanks for the support and great advise! Peace!
***Edited By: Fergusmagee on 10/5/2006 11:08:11 AM*** Reason: add information
I agree with NoDogYet 100%. She has not given you the vet information. If I were in this situation, I would want to prove it to you by giving you the vet's name. This makes no sense.
You did nothing wrong. How could she want a Doberman with cropped ears and not know the care. It takes months of care and that little girl should be seen by a vet immediately if something is wrong. I don't believe she even took the little girl to the vet. Poor baby. Have her fax you the bill thus far from the vet. You need proof.
I wish you all the luck. I'm going to go look at your web site. I want a Doberman in the future.
To NoDogYet, she has done nothing but give me figures on what she has already spent, but wants me to know that she doesn't expect me to cover shots, as they expected that expense. From her words and tone, I think she wants me to pay her the $280.00 that she has already incured for the ears (no proof), and for the medications to treat the infection and for all the rest of the vet bills related to this cropping until the ears stand. She advised that the vet already told her the ears will need reconstructive surgery. She is complaining that she has to take the dog back to the vet to have it's ears taped! Now honestly, I do not crop. With this litter, 3 folks decided to have them cropped. I know breeders from all over the country use my vet for this (he is a Dobie expert and fanatic, one of the reasons we moved to a new house last year, to be closer to him, for our "furniture", sorry couldn't resist! My vet actually has a puppy from my last litter! The girl also wanted it cropped, didn't do the proper after care and when my vet finallly saw him he bought the puppy on the spot! Actually paid her triple what she paid me, he so loves my dogs!) BUT - the 2 others that were cropped, they were 3 sisters - 2 went to MA and one is doing great! Another one went locally and the lady had a heart atttack the night she took her home, she will be okay (thank God) but will not be able to care for the puppy. She was heartbroken! So we of course took her back. I got nothing but offers from other breeders for her, so we diecided to keep her ourselves. She is doing great and I take her to the vet once a week and he tapes her ears, cause I do not have enough experience with this. She knew that! Croppings are a commitment! I would not have done it had they not requested it!
Anyway, I will not pay these vet bills, she can lawyer up or whatever. I stand behind my puppies and will pay her what she paid (oh and another thing, she SO convinced me that she would be the best family for thsi girl pup and she couldn't afford my asking price, so I gave them a $200.00 discount on her! That is how much I beleived this was a good home!!!!). But as of right now, I have no proof she even went to a vet. I really just want the puppy back. But I am not going to pay for things I did not cause. Isn't that like an admission of guilt??? Thanks again everyone and I will continue to keep you posted! Sorry for rambling!
You might want to add to your puppy application form an entry for the vet name and contact info. That way you can check in advance if that vet is experienced in areas that you feel are important, or if your potential client pays their bills.
Hi Everyone. Update. She will not give me her vet information. She states that I never offered her mine in one email I sent. However, that is because I do that in every intitial call about my puppies. His information is readily accessible on my web site. It is routine for me, but I am not going to argue with her. She also did not give me any difintive plan on how she wants this resolved. She again went on about an error in information that I gave her on the type of stiches used. I have already accepted responsbility for this error, but it has nothing to do with the care she gave. She choose to tape over ears that were obviously still visible and healing. I know our puppies were cropped on the same day. It does not take a genius to figure that out. She states that she never said her vet said the current problems were my fault, I responded that I know that, however, she implied over and over that this was due to my care. I asked her specifically what she wants me to do to resolve this. She said I am a poor breeder because I can not accept that someone does not like the outcome of purchasing on of my pups. I told her had she indicated the problem from the start I would have asked for her back. She has still not said that she will return her to me. SO again, thank you for your support and I will keep you all posted.