When looking to get a new dog, you want to make sure you are going to get a healthy pup who comes from a good breeder is important. Not all breeders are the same, and the health and temperament of your dog can be negatively affected.
Deciding if a breeder is ethical or not can be a difficult task. There isn’t always a simple answer, but there are a few signs that a breeder is good.
Look at intentions
Look into the intentions of the breeder. Does the breeder seem to be in it for the money? Or do they seem to care a lot about the dogs?
Often times a good breeder is not breeding dogs to make a profit. They are breeders because they genuinely care about dogs and keeping a particular breed alive and thriving.
For example, a white lab breeder should care a lot about labs as a breed and genuinely care about all of their dogs. They shouldn’t just be breeding labs to make a lot of money.
Does the breeder offer any guarantees? A responsible breeder will often provide a health guarantee. This means they promise that the puppies they breed are healthy. They often give refunds or replacement puppies to any owner whose puppy develops certain disorders.
The breeders often require a vet’s proof of a sick puppy but will try to help make it right. An ethical breeder wants to prevent health issues related to unethical breeding. They help ensure this by creating these guarantees.
They may also offer guarantees to help with training or behavior. They may even take the puppy back if the puppy has behavioral issues.
Most breeders will get their puppies the first round of vaccines before they even let you take them home. Ask the breeder about what vaccines it has or will provide before you bring the puppy home.
Vaccines are critical to a dog’s overall health. Getting them earlier is better. Breeders who refuse to vaccinate puppies for you or who seem unconcerned about a puppy getting vaccinated are not looking out for the dog’s health.
The breeder should have a clean and safe environment for their puppies. They should also provide their puppies with plenty of toys, treats, and good quality dog food.
The breeder should also start to train their puppies at a young age. Suppose a breeder doesn’t seem to have any control of their dogs, especially of the mother. In that case, the breeder probably isn’t very good with dogs.
If anything about the puppies’ environment seems off, that is a pretty good sign that the breeder isn’t very responsible,
Questions about you
The breeder should ask you questions about your lifestyle and needs. Suppose a breeder is willing to give you a puppy without knowing anything about you. That is a sign that they care more about selling their puppies than finding them a good home.
Ethical breeders want to make sure that their puppies are going to a good home where they will be taken care of.
An ethical breeder should also be able to easily answer any questions you have for them. If they cannot answer questions about the puppies, breeding practices, and health concerns, that should be a red flag.
A good breeder will provide you with references to vets, groomers, and overall best practices. If a breeder isn’t giving you any recommendations on properly caring for your puppy, including diet and exercise, that is a bad sign.
Ethical breeders are well connected to the dog community. They should be able to give you contact information for good vets and groomers that can help you take care of your new pup.
Ethical breeders can trace the family history of their puppies for a few generations. You should be able to ask questions about the puppies’ parents and grandparents. Ask about the family history of health and temperament.
A good breeder should also be able to provide you with proof of genetic testing that was done to ensure a healthy litter.
If a breeder can’t provide any family history, this is not a good sign.
A puppy’s overall health is an excellent way to tell if they were bred correctly. An unhealthy puppy is a sign of a breeder who does not actually care for their pups. While obvious signs like fleas or rugged appearance can be a good indicator, sometimes you need to dig a little deeper.
An unhealthy puppy is easy to spot based on its fur or face. A sick puppy will have red eyes, sores or puss on their face or skin, or a less shiny and full coat.
Getting a new dog can be a wonderful experience. If you are getting yours from a breeder, it is a good idea to make sure the breeder is ethical. Look for signs of unethical breeders, and don’t purchase from them.