That is a really sad story. I hate it when stupid back yard breeders do this to people. If you don't have a clue, don't breed. How hard is it for people to do research before they buy. It can save so much money.
The more people post the bad, the more the general public see it. As a breeder for over 15yrs, I have seen a big difference in the questions I get about my dogs/puppies. We just need to reach a few more.
I have no idea what the standard practice is and I would appreciate comments from breeders on this. I personally would not buy from a breeder who's health guaranty only allows for a replacement puppy. Too many breeders are betting on the fact that buyers will be too attached to their new puppy to give it back. Be honest, wouldn't most of us fall head over heels in love in a matter of days if not hours? I would much prefer an agreement that offers money back with or with out giving up the puppy (depending on the circumstances).
I have over 30 years experience as a Bullmastiff breeder. I sell pet puppies on a limited registration now and prior to the AKC making that option available I was selling on a must spay/neuter contract with a $100 of the purchase price refunded after I received a copy of a vet bill showing the surgery had been done. I have multiple generations of OFA certified dogs and also do eye, heart and thyroid checks. My guarantee states if the dog fails to pass OFA it can be returned to me for a FULL refund of the purchase price or the dog may be kept and I will refund ONE HALF the purchase price and if the dog has not been spayed/neutered the surgery must be done. I aso state in the contract if at any time in the dogs life the owner is no longer able to care for the dog is is to be returned to me. I will and have taken dogs back thru the years for various reasons, almost never having any thing to do with the dog its self, divorce, job loss, change in work schedule ,etc.
Just out of curiosity, Drogheda, why not [upon failure to pass OFA] refund the FULL amount and let the owner keep the dog. Seems to me it'd be less expensive to do that than to have the dog returned (for which you do offer a full refund) and have to care for a disabled dog for the rest of its life. Just naively and respectfully wondering...
Or maybe a failing OFA grade is NOT an inevitable disabling sentence for a dog?
The reason I ask is, a friend of mine has a four-year-old female GSD lifetime guaranteed against genetic issues, who has recently been diagnosed with PEI. From what she says, the lifetime meds to keep the dog as healthy as possible are fairly expensive for the average joe. Contractually, the dog's breeder offers a return/refund or return/puppy, but offers no relief if the owner wants to keep and care for the dog. I know my friend read/signed the contract, but it just seems to me that the breeder is banking on the hope that most people will not give up a beloved family pet for a refund or a puppy, so the breeder would be unaffected by the consequences of the illness of his genetically defective dog. IMO, I feel the contract should include a full refund/monthly stipend to help defray the cost of [his] dog's genetic issue's lifetime medical expenses, since a return of the dog would probably cost the breeder much more than that, being he/she wouldn't be able to rehome it easily without failing to disclose the medical problem.
A dog can fail to pass OFA due to hip dysplasia in varying degrees. A mild or moderate dysplasia may have no real effect on the dog's health or activity as long as the dog doesn't become overweight. A severe case will cause chronic pain and no dog in constant pain should be in a household with young children. This is for the safety of the children and to protect the dog from being labeled agressive or dangerous. This is one of the reasons why I do not participate in the American Bullmastiff Association rescue program, their stance is no x-rays are needed for hip dysplacia prior to placing a dog for adoption and that such a high percentage of Bullmastiffs are dysplastic that adopters should know that and pay for their own x-rays after adoption.I tried to be as fair as possible in the wording of my contract. I think there are too many "breeders" who know they are producing unhealthy dogs but are not suffering any penalty because the buyers don't want to return the dog because they fear it will be put down. Who in their right mind would take another dog from someone after first buying one that had something wrong with it?
I had breed aussies for over 15yrs, and now I do mini aussies. My contract states a puppy replacement. I figure the degree of what I decide to refund is on a case to case basis. I was burned one to many times as an aussie breeder, so I no longer disclose a refund on my contract. That is left up to me as I would want depending on the situation. I personally don't know very many people who want to keep a dog that has to have expensive lifetime medicine, but that is just me.
" I personally don't know very many people who want to keep a dog that has to have expensive lifetime medicine, but that is just me. "
I personally dont know anyone that could have a dog for any length of time, and want to return it. Especially one that they have had for four years ? No way. A friend of my sisters bought a German Shepherd pup and before she was even two years old, she started having hip issues. They spent thousands of dollars on medications and surgeries and finally had her put down at five years old, rather than watching her suffer. Had they known what they were up against would they have decided instead to return the pup ? No way. They were attached to her from the very beginning. I live in Washington State. My Frenchies came from , Missouri, Oklahoma, and Russia. Would i have returned any of them had they developed any serious issues ? No way Hosay !
If you are a dog and your owner suggests that you wear a sweater, suggest that he wear a tail.
Drogheda, your contract sounds very reasonable to me. That the kind of contract I will be looking for when I buy my next dog ( if I don't adopt). Too, bad I'm not looking for a Bullmastiff,LOL. I think the type of contract a breeder offers is totally their perogative, but I would be leary of "return the puppy or deal with it" type contracts.
Personally I think that replacement puppy only guarantees are BS, they are a way for BYB to look good, because, like Dusty said, I cant think of anyone who would return a dog that they have had as part of their family, knowing there is a good chance it will be euth'ed. I feel the same way about a health guarantee less than 5 years.