Reputable Breeder vs. the Backyard Breeder

Backyard Breeder

Reputable Breeder

1. Motive for breeding: "fun", "good for kids", "to make money". Does not screen buyers and seldom refuses to sell, even if buyer is unsuitable. 1. Dedication to producing quality dogs is serious avocation. Has so much invested in dogs that he struggles to break even, not make a profit. Will sell pups only to approved buyers.
2. Breeds the family pet to any convenient pet of the same breed just to have purebred pups. Has no understanding or concern with genetics, pedigree bloodlines, or breed improvement. 2. Can explain how planned breedings are used to emphasize or minimize specific qualities through linebreeding, outcrossing, or more rarely, inbreeding.
3. Though the pets (sire/dam of pups) may be well loved, they were not tested for hip dysplasia or for other genetic problems such as cardiomyopathy and hypothyroidism. 3. Does not breed dogs younger than age 2. Has breeding stock x-rayed to check for hip dysplasia, echo/doppler run for SAS, holtered within the last year for boxer cardiomyopathy (also known as ARVC) and thyroid screened. Can produce certification to prove claims.
4. Offers no health guarantee beyond proof of shots, if that. Unqualified to give help if problems develop. 4. Written contractural commitment to replace a dog with genetic faults or to help owner deal with problem.
5. Seller has little knowledge of breed history, the national breed club or of the AKC breed standard. May claim this does not matter for "just pets". 5. Loves the breed and can talk at length about its background, uses, and ideal type.
6. Pups raised in makeshift accommodations, sometimes unsanitary, indicating lack of long-term investment in breeding and lack of true care for the puppies well-being. 6. Has an investment in dog equipment and the puppies environment is sanitary and loving.
7. Even when selling "just pets", may produce AKC papers or "championship pedigrees" as proof of quality. Yet seller does not increase his own knowledge through participation in national, regional, or local breed clubs. Is not involved in showing their dogs to "prove" quality. 7. Belongs to national, regional, and/or local dog clubs, indicating a love for the sport of purebred dogs. Shows their dogs as an objective test of how his stock measures up.
8. May be unwilling to show a buyer the entire litter or to introduce the dam of the litter. Cannot or will not compare/critique pups or pup’s ancestors. 8. Shows litter and dam in a sanitary environment. Helps buyer evaluate and choose a pup. Explains criteria for "show prospects" versus "pet picks".
9. Prices are at the low end of local range, since must move pups quickly. Advertises in the local newspaper classifieds. 9. Prices will be at the high end of local range. Price will not reflect all that is invested in the pups. A reputable breeder never profits from the sale of puppies. Does not advertise in the newspaper. Has an established waiting list for the pups.
10. No concern for the future of individual pups or the breed as a whole. Does not use AKC’s limited registration option or ask for spay/neuter contract to guard against the breeding of sub-standard pups. If you cannot keep pup, tells you to take it to a dog pound or to sell it. 10. After purchase, will help you with grooming or training problems. Will take back a pup you cannot keep rather than see it disposed of inappropriately. Sells pets with spay/neuter agreement and on AKC limited registration.

A Few Guidlines for Selecting a Boxer Breeder

1. A reputable breeder will not breed dogs under the age of 2. 1. A reputable boxer breeder will conduct (and can provide proof of) the following genetic health tests on their breeding animals and will require them of the sire (father) should they "hire" a stud dog for the litter:

Holter monitor test yearly
Full thyroid panel yearly
OFA (for hip displasia), a one time deal done at or after age 2

Beware of breeders who scoff at genetic testing and say their particular breed/line is problem-free.

2. A reputable breeder requires that "pet-quality" animals be spayed or neutered and sells them on Limited Registration. Be wary of breeders who do not mention altering.

3. A reputable breeder provides a written contract with the sale of the pup. This will vary from breeder to breeder, but usually spells out the rights of the seller and buyer, health information, genetic health guarantees (should be at least 2 years), required altering and buy-back/return policy.

4. A reputable breeder typically has a waiting list for the unborn puppies and does not advertise in the newspaper classifieds.

5. A reputable breeder shows passion, love, and tremendous knowledge about the breed. He or she cares about placing puppies in excellent homes and will often interview potential buyers thoroughly, will make referrals to the local boxer rescue group, ask for references and will refuse to sell a dog if the home is not appropriate for the breed or for a puppy.

6. A reputable breeder recommends the local boxer rescue organization to potential homes. Explaining that these dogs make wonderful family pets and companions.

7. A reputable breeder will hold on to puppies as long as it takes to place them in the right homes and will continue to recommend rescue even though they have puppies available.

8. The environment (typically a home) in which the breeder keeps the dogs should be clean and well-maintained. Do not agree to meet the breeder off site. TRUST YOUR INSTINCTS ON THIS!

9. A reputable breeder is actively involved in the dog fancy, including showing and/or breed clubs. While there are exceptions--a retired individual who has shown dogs for 20 years--a person who is not involved with others in the breed can be suspect.

10. A reputable breeder is willing to provide answers to questions you may have and is willing to provide names of others who have purchased pups from them.

11. A reputable breeder will allow you to meet the puppies parents if available and, if the father isn't available, they will show you pictures and provide you with the information on how to contact the owner of the sire(father).

12. A reputable breeder follows up on puppies. He or she is interested in how the pups develop physically and mentally, difficulties in the owner/dog relationship and health problems.

13. A reputable breeder will not let puppies leave their home prior to 8 weeks of age and often not until 10 weeks of age.

14. Tails and dew claws should have been removed from the puppies by 3 days old.

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