Tuesday, March 10, 2009

Show Me The Proof!

Ever come across dog breeder sites that contain absolutely no real content about their dogs? Their sites will be littered with cutesy pictures of puppies playing with balls and children. Adults being cuddled and all sorts of family type feel-good shots. The content of information about their dogs will speak about how much they love their dogs; how sweet they are; what good pets; what nice markings the parents have; how they have "bone", etc. The key thing missing in all of these sites is evidence to back up these claims. Where are the health clearances? How do they know their dog is of good type? Was it judged by an outside source? How is their breeding stock superior and able to produce good (better) pets to that of the breeder who shows and tests their breeding stock?

There are often incredible claims being made on these websites:
  • our dogs come from European stock and don't have the same problems as North American dogs
  • only show dogs have health problems
  • we only want to produce nice pets
  • we've never had any hip dysplasia
  • we've never produced cancer
  • our dogs have wonderful temperaments and excellent type
  • our dogs have excellent health.


What evidence do they have that European dogs are somehow healthier than North American dogs? How does coming across an ocean cause health problems? How does stepping into a show ring cause health problems? How do they know they've never produced pups with orthopedic problems - have all of them been tested and certified? Have post mortems been performed on all breeding dogs owned and all pups produced to determine cause of death so that they can claim they have never produced cancer?

These type of breeders ride on the coat tails of the responsible breeders who make every effort to test their breeding stock for health problems associated with their breed. Responsible breeders take part in their breed clubs, they attend shows to have their breeding stock assessed by an outside source as to their quality - to ascertain their strengths and weaknesses. They participate in health research and education to the public and rescue. They screen their buyers and will always take back puppies. And most important - they can tell you about the background of their dogs because they have knowledge of the pedigree. They know about the ancestors in the background of the puppy, i.e., orthopedics, longevity, temperament, size, etc. Every breeder will produce pups with problems. What the buyer should want to know is what are they doing to minimize problems (and the only way that can be done is through health testing of parents and ancestors and knowing the pedigree of the parents for the strengths and weaknesses that are in every bloodline).

Compare this to the fluffy breeder websites that can't even tell you who the grandparents are let alone what they might have died of.

I say before you plunk down your hard earned cash for a new puppy ask the breeder to SHOW YOU THE PROOF that this is indeed a well bred puppy.

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