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BUYER BEWARE OF PUPPY BROKERS
The decision to get a new puppy was joyous, then the realization you’re looking a new family member sets in, the stress of can be over whelming and let’s be honest it’s a big investment, a 10+yr investment.
With the unprecedented growth of this breeds popularity in this country, and especially in the warm southern states, hundreds and even thousands of "would-be" breeders have appeared. People who may have owned a dog, people who thought breeding dog was easy money, or bought an overpriced puppy with the hopes of returned investment, in a short period of time decide that they are ready to start breeding dogs. In spite of the fact that they lack knowledge mentorship and experience, they print up flyers, distribute business cards, build websites place ads on hoobly, craigslist, facebook, instagram and even ebay.
In an attempt to get "the best price", the unsuspecting customer calls the number listed on the flyer or in the ad and asks for a price. Often, such operations are run out of a mail drop or on an answering machine, but someone usually calls the customer back. When you get the price, you are really pleased at how much this person says the puppies are and how great the quality is, even that they don’t agree with the high prices some people charge, after all a puppy is a puppy right? And the best home is all that really matters right? Then the story begins. The puppy peddler tells you he is going to need a large portion of the money up front, to hold your puppy. He may say he needs it to pay for shipping arrangements, puppy shots, or to pay for another puppies needs because its new owners is slow to pay. He may even tell you about the unexpected medical bills he had to pay for a sick puppy (that he really doesn't have), in hopes of gaining your sympathy.
If you’re lucky you will actually get your puppy as promised, as many do not. At first things may seem fine, and you still think you’re lucky. So many times within the first week month or year health issues begin to arise. In the early stages its usually intestinal, internal or external parasites, or fleas things your vet assures you is treatable and common but still breaks your heart.
Then the excuses begin. After a week has passed, with no response, you call your puppy peddler. All you get is a recorded message, so you leave a message, politely requesting a return phone call. Several more days passed, with no response, so you call and leave another message, not as polite as the first. When the puppy peddler does call, he is very apologetic and tells you about some catastrophe involving his dog, his family, his job or another breeder. He promises to call you back in a few days to figure it out. A week later he still hasn't called back, or he does and explains how this is your fault.
Sound ridiculous? Well it happens every day, often with the new owner losing hundreds or even thousands of dollars in vet bills, with more never even receiving their expected new family member. You, as the new owner have little recourse other than to pursue the matter in court.
In a day in age where google and facebook forums give birth to overnight experts in a breed, an alarming amount of puppy peddlers talk the talk, where the falter is walking the walk.
Here is where I would like to invite you to please shop around, compare what you learned about us, our dogs and dedication to others. The more you shop, the better we look. The positioning here isn’t fluff or bolstering an ego it will honestly educate you and save you and your family from years of heartache having purchased an unhealthy puppy from unhealthy, un proven parents raised by less than experienced or dedicated people.
To help you in finding the perfect new addition to your family we’ve made a list of questions to ask a breeder, you’re interviewing, and why those questions are important. We know some of these questions may seem odd, but the answers may alarm you.
1. How old are the sire and dam (mom and dad)? All too often we see females being bred on their very first heats or what should be well into their retirement. What possible benefit could come of this? Typically, males reach sexual maturity before females, meaning some males can sire a litter when they are six months old or less. Females take a little longer to mature. But the best practice is to wait until both are fully mature so you can assess their physical traits and find the best mate to breed away from any faults. You should also wait for your dog to fully mature so that you can perform any necessary health checks on them to make sure that they won't pass on any heritable diseases or conditions. The only motive is money.
2. How many litters has the Dam (mom) had? How many litters do you have a year?
3. Do you show your dogs or participate in any dog sports? The sport of showing orginated as a way to prove your dogs worthiness to be bred, PERIOD. Where a dog was judged to the breed standard and competed against other dog to weed out the best of the best for breeding stock. Breeders who show their dogs are not necessarily better than those that do not. However, if you want a puppy that has show potential, you need to visit a breeder who shows. The same is true in other sports. Even if your puppy is going to be your companion and friend, do not immediately rule out such a breeder. You might end up with a pet that may not be show quality, but an excellent dog. However if a breeder is making boastful statement about the dogs being the “best” without having competed in a ring, proven its worthiness… those are no more than boastful statements.
4. Does the puppy come with Health certificate and certificate of sale? Ask the breeder if he will supply a health certificate for the puppy issued by his veterinarian, most states REQUIRE a puppy being sold to have a valid heath certificate issues no more than 10 days prior to the sale. Some states require also a certificate of sale. A health certificate is a minor expense and there is NO EXCUSE for a breeder not supplying one, both as a safety nets for the breeder as well as the buyer. It does insure at the time the puppy appears healthy and is free of internal and external parasites.
6. Are you a licensed business with the state? LLC, Inc. ? Are your licensed with the USDA? Several new laws and additions were passed by the USDA September 10th 2013, for the protection and welfare of animals that require even “hobby breeders” to hold and license and be subject to inspection. The long and short of the new laws cover almost everyone who breeds dogs to be licensed. The cliff’s notes: If a breeder has more than 4 breeding females (animals with the capacity to be bred, meaning not spayed) on their premises, or they ship puppies SIGHT UNSEEN, they must be licensed.
7. Ask for a list of references! I cannot stress this one enough, don’t be shy either, in our glorious technology era you can really get a lot of information easily, but do your due diligence when checking references. Best reference in the world is a “repeat customer” When you can find a breeder who has customers come back again and again over the span of many years you’ve found a breeder you can count on for the next 10+ yrs of your new family members’ life. Please don't just go by reviews on the internet talk to references in person..
8. Ask to come and visit the kennel in person , if you can not come see the dogs in person at your breeders home then consider the possiblity they might be a puppy broker. No excuses like at my partners home , another chapter etc. You need to be able to see first hand where your new family member is being raised . If you can't visit the kennel you are buying from ask for videos of the parents and puppys.
With that being said Topdogbullies has a open door policy , if you are one of our clients you are welcome at anytime to see our dogs in person and their puppies. We will make sure you can see the parents and ancestors if possible . All our puppies are shipped out of our home so we know you are to get the qualtiy you deserve.
Placing our puppies in responsible, quality homes that will care for and love them the way we do it, is a TOP priority! . If you have ANY questions do not hesitate to ask, our line is always open-
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