Friday, December 08, 2006

Being contacted about breeding

Occasionally, I'll get an email or phone call from an individual wishing to breed their bitch. The calls that I'm speaking of are from an individual who owns a pet girl and wants her to have a litter. There is never any mention of clearances for hips, elbows, and eyes. Of course, my first thoughts are that the girl shouldn't be bred and should be spayed. I write back though and explain with as much kindness as I can that before any breeding can even be considered the bitch will have to have OFA clearances for hips and elbows as well as an ACVO clearance for eyes. I also explain as tactfully as possible about the expenses that go into just doing a breeding, notwithstanding having to whelp and care for a litter of puppies. Most of the time, I never hear back from the people and assume that they have found someone who will do the breeding without clearances. I would like to think that they have gotten the message and will decide NOT to breed their bitch. Only once or twice have I gotten the opposite request: to breed one of my girls to their wonderful male. Everyone loves their dogs and thinks that they are the best looking and smartest in the world. Most people who aren't breeders don't realize that there are many other criteria that need to be fulfilled before any breeding takes place.

This is also the time of year when requests come in for Christmas puppies. We never sell a puppy at Christmas, simply because there is too much activity and the concept of having a puppy as a "gift" isn't a good one. Puppies become dogs and are a lifetime committment, not a throwaway windup toy. There are many articles about why getting a puppy at Christmas is a bad idea. Here is a link to one:
The best thing to do is to give books about Labradors and puppy raising, study them and get the puppy after the holidays are over!

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