Yesterday I stopped at a little produce stand set up along the road. While there browsing, I noticed the cutest little puppies. I asked the breed because I am horrible with breeds....anyway, the mennonite guy said they were jugs and proceeded to tell me the price. $600. I was so shocked. I of course, did play with the puppies, they were just too cute to resist. He proceeded to tell me the mother was on site and the father was not, however, if I was interested he could arrange for me to see the father.
These dogs were mutts! I know this subject has been beaten to death, but I just had to vent a little. It was so hard to not tell this guy that his puppies weren't designer breeds, but mutts. It wouldn't have helped though.
These puppies were so cute and I am sure he will have no problems finding owners. It will be people like myself who stopped for the produce and end up with a Jug(Jack Russel/pug). What a name!
I understand your frustration but I agree with Rottluvr, stop buying anything from that guy. If everyone stopped buying these mutts, they wouldn't end up in shelters and many dogs would be saved from being stuck in inadequate living spaces and being forced to reproduce.
In order to really enjoy a dog, one doesn't merely try to train him to be semi human. The point of it is to open oneself to the possibility of becoming partly a dog. ~Edward Hoagland
I wish to God no one ever decided that "designer dogs" were the IN THING!!
I have a puggle, yep a so called designer dog. Why? Because he was 4 months old and we heard about him HOURS before the owners were to put him down...
It was given to them, by her brother who paid about 600 or more for him, he had spent his first four months in a cage in a garage, never been on a leash, only out a few minutes int he garage, twice a day, no name, etc.
We naturally fell in love with him when we saw him. His owners explained it away with the "we are cat people" answer when we asked them why. Upshot. We got a tremendous dog, (Puggle), we named, Rocky, we got his kennel with him, we got his shots, had him neutered, took him to obedience classe, and we are NOT young.
We have had dogs all our lives and Rocky is by far the best we have ever had. I swear they know you rescued them.
PLEASE do not patronize Back yard, side of the road, whatever, breeders. Go to your nearest shelter and adopt one, they come fixed, all shots, and they can give you an idea of their temperment etc. and those animals KNOW they have been rescued and will give you and your family the most JOY you have ever known.
The best to you and many many thanks for asking others opinions, even if you choose not to follow anyones advice at least you asked. Bless You!!
Normap, you deserve a big pat on the back for rescuing your Rocky! I sure you face similar predjudice that certain "dangerous" breed owners face. I think it's great that you have Rocky and I want you to know that anything I ever say about "designer dogs" and their "breeders" is in no way directed towards you or Rocky. Unfortunately as long as people see dogs as fashion accesories and buy them b/c their the "in thing," many other dogs will end up just like Rocky.
I think what kills me is that 20 years ago, those same puppies would have been put in a cardboard box and GIVEN away... It amazes me how gullible the general public is. If someone gives it a cute name, it's no longer the same activity that random pet owners have been doing for a century. Years ago, if you called yourself a breeder, it meant you were breeding quality dogs and really taking things seriously. If you had a litter of mixed breed puppies, you were having a litter to give away to the neighbors. You got back what you put into the litter - nothing but love. Now every person on the street thinks they can make a couple of bucks by pawning off mixed breed puppies with a cute name with high dollar price tags.
I've always wondered if those people took the price they paid for their Jack Russell and the price they paid for their beagle, combined them and decided that is how much you charge for their mixed breed puppies...?
I wouldn't buy a thing from the guy. He obviously views dogs the same way he looks at his produce - as a product. That's not the kind of human being I want to deal with on any level.
I think what kills me is that 20 years ago, those same puppies would have been put in a cardboard box and GIVEN away... It amazes me how gullible the general public is.
It still amazes me that the general public is gullible enough to pay so much for any dog, mutts and purebreds alike, especially for just a pet. I almost felt guilty charging people so much for a pet (almost). Around here, people still get their pets from a “cardboard box” for free. In fact, my current dog came from the neighbor’s mutt for free. Most here do not give a crap about pure breeds, not when they got to pay for one. A dog is a dog is a dog. No matter what lineage it came from. As log as they are happy with the size, look and temperament, they could not care less. When I tell people what I used to do and what I was charging for them, they think I am pulling their leg. It just does not compute.
It is no wonder that there is a $40,000,000,000 per year pet industry in the US. Somewhere along the line, people in the USA got their priorities all screwed up and lost sight of what a dog really is.
But then again, this is the American way, is it not? See a need and feel it? Give people what they want and make a few bucks in the process? Capitalism at its best.
If I seem to have a superiority complex, it is because you make it so easy.
<-- I have a "Jug". She was purchased, but for not nearly as much as that guy on the road was selling them for. She wasn't advertised as a "designer breed" and I admit that I went about obtaining a new family member the wrong way (internet ad).
That was just over a year ago. I now spend most of my time tell people that she's a Pug/JRT cross (NOT a Jug) and if they want one like her, to go to petfinder (or similar rescue site) or to keep their eye on the pound/humane society.
I found this site AFTER I had her and now know better as how to obtain the next member of my family when that time arises. The pounds/rescues are just too full of mix breeds/poorly bred dogs to keep people like that guy (and the lady I bought my pup from) in business.
You have enemies? Good! That means you've stood up for something, sometime in your life.
Well Juno-I can tell you the reason I spent what I did for my purebred dogs. Plain and simple-I wanted a healthy dog! The parents of both my dogs were OFA'd, so I knew I had a much better chance of getting a pup with good hips/elbows. Also, the dogs in the line all hunt. Important to DH, because that's why we chose a pointing breed. Could I have bought a cheaper dog? Heck yeah! If I wanted to get one from a newspaper ad, where someone had a brittany and their brother in law had a brittany so they decided to breed them. But silly me-I consider health and good breeding more important than saving a dollar (or $600, as the case may be!)
We do adore him,l and like Doggy Daddy, I know there are a lot of pups put to death every year sadly because they didn't come up to standards.
As long as there is a craving for "something no one else has" Designer dogs will be around.
Mutts are wonderful pets, through the years, we have had mutts, at least 5,then we decided we wanted a Yorkie, we researched the heck out of it, (no internet then) contacted 3 different breeders and finally made a choice. We knew we wanted a pet, so no problem signing the papers to get him registered(for the breeder) and having them fixed as soon as the vet had time.
Five years later our Cat died and we purchased another Yorkie same process. The oldest lived to be 14 1/2 the second 15 years. We had been dogless for almost 2 years when we heard about Rocky. We almost didn't go, cause we weren't sure what the heck a puggle was or the kind of training he would have to have, etc.
There are a few Puggle Owners on this site, and we all agree, they are the most LOVING dogs, we have ever seen... They are very stubborn, but the trainer told us once they finally let go and listen to you, the battle is won. It is true!!!
We have had Rocky 17 months, and can't remember life without him. Good luck finding a dog. The right one is out there for you!! Norma
I never feel guilty charging what I do for my puppies. I keep my prices reasonable - but they reflect how much time, energy, and money I've put into insuring I'm breeding healthy, well bred puppies. It's not cheap to do hip X-rays, eye CERF's, MSU Thyroid panels... It's not cheap to go to dog shows (which I feel is necessary for me to verify that what I'm breeding is structurally sound). It's not cheap to feed a great quality food, or keep your dogs on monthly heartworm prevention and Frontline. It's not cheap to buy good cleaner, good shampoo, good toothpaste. To have clean dog beds for each dog. It's a lot of work and a lot of money on an annual basis. I do it because I love it and I love my breed. But if I'm going to place pet puppies I ideally would like to attempt to cover SOME of my expenses that I put into raising them! I always hope the people buying pets from me understand what I put into each litter. I'd give them all away to good homes if I was independently wealthy - but I'm not... :)
The "healthier" argument is bogus. My grandmother had a shihtzu/lhasa apso mix that lived 17 years.. he was a rescue dog at 5. After he died we got a boxer that died from health issues when he was 2 and a half. So, that argument is out the window.
Right now my best friend has a pure bred schnauzer that -always- has ear problems, teeth problems.. everything you can imagine. My shih tzu/toy poodle mix has only had one ear infection in three years and is otherwise completely healthy. That card is way over played.
Now, I'm not condoning paying 600 dollars for a mixed breed dog.. but I don't condone paying 600 dollars for ANY animal (that is if you're buying for a companion minus the showing).. most purebreds you can find at a shelter just as well. Learning what I've learned about people out for a quick buck with their backyard breeding, I would never purchase another "shihpoo" like I did Duchess. However, I do not regret it. She's the best dog I've ever seen and knowing what I know now I would have easily paid 600 dollars for her at that time. Hopefully people will learn from this site, like I did. The lady I got her from was in her 60s and had only the one shihtzu. She was the only litter of pups she had period. It was a different situation, really.. but now that the fad has caught on it's gotten way out of hand.
Bottom line is, all puppies are cute. If someone goes out on the side of a road with puppies.. no matter what the breed, they are automatically going to be interested. If they have kids, it's even worse. Purebred, or mutt.
Halo's fire, you didn't mention if either of the two purebreds came from breeders who did health testing. If they came from backyard breeders who put any two "registered" dogs together, then no wonder the weren't healthy. Anyone who's ever taken a college statistics class, or science class can tell you that you need way more than four dogs to make that kind of argument. In English composition personal experience is considered the least persuasive and is often discouraged when writing a college level paper.
***Edited By: Rottluvr on 7/30/2008 12:37:42 AM*** Reason: I can't spell worth a darn!
Well, now, I had a purebred Mastiff that came from an excellent show breeder who did all the testing...and she lived to be nearly 14 (which is really long for a dog that size). My cousins well bred cocker lived to 16. My friends mutt died before it was one.
You can find evidence to support whatever argument you want. There are always anomalies, but bottom line is, a well bred dog from a breeder that puts endless effort into their dogs is going to produce a healthier dog.
Even if you are on the right track, you will still get run over if you just sit there. (Will Rogers)
normap - I wasn't really responding to your post! I'm sorry! I was trying to subtly respond to an earlier poster without calling them out...
Every dog can have health issues. The occurance of them in well bred, well planned puppies from a knowledgeable breeder is a lot less than from someone who takes two "papered" dogs and breeds them together. And I mean A LOT less. I have a friend who has been breeding/showing for 35 years. She just lost an 18 year old Sheltie. Almost every single one of her dogs, barring fluke problems/accidents, lives to be at least 14-15 years old and they are healthy, happy, and active into their teens. I have a purebred, "papered" Sheltie I got from a puppymill before I started breeding and showing who is 7 years old - she's got joint problems and is already on heavy duty arthritis meds, is hypothyroid, has both food and environmental allergies... and again - she's just 7... Things started going south when she was a little over a year old.
I am also a BIG proponent of pet owners understanding that the breeder IS only doing 1/2 the work. You have to take good care of your pets - and the standard of care I consider "good" isn't what MOST pet owners do, unfortunately. MY dogs are going to live to be active happy teenagers. But I groom everyone weekly, keep teeth pristine white (brushing them 2-3 times a week, scaling them at home, providing lots of chew bones, and dental cleanings at the vet as needed - and by that I do NOT mean "when it's so bad I can't stand the smell of their breath"), keep them at their ideal, healthy, athletic weight, feed a good food, keep them on heartworm prevention and flea/tick prevention, keep MYSELF current on what is healthy vaccine protocol and what good nutrition is...
If you groom your dog once every 4-6 months, don't keep their teeth clean or ears clean, don't trim their nails, feed a cheap, low grade food, and allow them to be more than about 15% overweight consistantly - ummm... no matter how great a job I did as a breeder, you're not going to have a dog that lives a long, active life.
And I'm sorry halosfire - If you can say that you don't think anyone should pay $600 for a pet, then you don't understand what actually goes into being a good breeder. I HOPE for show prospect puppies - but honestly, in my breed, if I get 1 out of a litter of 5 I'm happy. That means I have to find a way to pay for health testing, show expenses, vet bills... some other way... I'm not breeding to sell show prospects for $2000... I show to verify that what I'm breeding is excellent quality. So my program is for ME - but there is going to be pet puppies in EVERY litter (unless I hit the lottery :) and I ALWAYS equally think about whether the puppies from a litter I'm planning will be happy, healthy pets.
I agree that it's important to rescue or adopt from the shelter. I am active with Sheltie rescue. I have a rescue dog that I fostered and kept. The Sheltie rescue contact person for my area is my "mentor" - so I know what she has that she's looking for homes for and I'm always keeping my ears open for the right home for rescues as well. However, it is NOT right for everyone - and I firmly believe that if you're not going to rescue you should be using a breeder who is actually doing their JOB as a breeder. I take this seriously. I attend health and conformation seminars (I spent a whole day at our breed national this year in a health seminar that covered 3 of the biggest health concerns for my breed) whenever I have the chance. I study. I plan. I do NOT make a living breeding dogs by any means. In fact, I end up picking up part time jobs usually 2-3 times a year to cover my expenses... I think GOOD breeders have a right to ask for their puppies a reasonable price that will help them continue to run great breeding programs.
I DO agree that BYB's and Puppymills that cut corners and breed irresponsibly totally irk me to no end because they essentially make a KILLING on their puppies because they aren't using that money to breed responsibly - they are using it for selfish, greedy purposes and are theoritically robbing the unsuspecting people who buy puppies from them...
I have had both mutts and purebreds that have lived for 13+ years so I guess that blows halos out of the water
My mutt on one hand had tooth and back problems his whole life, he had 4 surgeries on his mouth and could barely walk in the winter sometimes.
Now my 2 purebreds who are 13 and 11 have never had any major issues, my male has epilepsy, which was diagnosed at 2, he has never needed medication for it, and has a seizer every 6-8 months maybe, the only thing it affected was breeding him, I neutered him. At 13 Ruffian has arthritis a little, she can only stay out long enough to pee once it hits -30ish, but once the snow flies she doesnt want to be outside anyway, LOL.
Got to read between the lines in order to get my post. I touched on several different issues that all tie in to the OP. Not necessarily my POV, just some recent observations of mine.
This is just the POV from the area I am in now. I guess my post was too disjointed and subtle for you to get it. Just keep in mind that the OFA, CERF and AKC-like organizations are not world wide. In many places they are simply not needed or wanted. The “hybrid vigor” argument is not all a myth. It is a well established fact that the demand for pure breeds, the willingness of people to pay obscene amount for them and the things the well meaning show people did to their breeds over the years, really messed up many breed and caused the need for all those tests and organizations. Those problems are just not that prevalent in others parts of the world. Most of these problems were self induced by greed, ignorance, vanity and apathy. In the old days and in many other parts of the world, Survival of the fittest is still the rule. Dogs are not viewed in the same way as in the US. People do not spend a whole lot on pets. When a dog has a costly medical problem, its owner priorities and often dumps it (literally). Since most dogs are a dime a dozen, there is not much profit in breeding, no point in keeping them around for that purpose. They do not live long enough to reproduce. Why spend so much on a dog when you can get a new one for free. Whole litters are being culled where in the states they would just be sold for top dollars as a new and improved designer breed. The American mentality and values toward dogs is just that, not everyone everywhere share it.
If I seem to have a superiority complex, it is because you make it so easy.