Tips & Advice
Tips & Advice

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Tips for breeders

Puppy Buying Tips

Having a dog in your family is a huge responsibility, regardless of whether you adopt, or buy one from a breeder. You have to carefully think it through so you make the right choice. Remember it will not only affect your life, but the dog's life as well. We all know many dogs sadly end up in shelters; unfortunately this is often because the owner didn't make a responsible decision, or chose the wrong breed or dog. DON'T BE ONE OF THEM.

Wuuff was designed with this huge responsibility at the front and centre.

There are so many factors and issues that have to be considered; and all the other websites suggest you ask all of these many questions to the breeder. However Wuuff wants you to see them on our website, upfront, and without having to ask; because you should have all the necessary info for your decision, in one place, and easy to understand.

The tips below will help with how to understand everything you will see and how to take these successfully into consideration when comparing and choosing your dog.

Providing a Home for the Right Breed

Choosing the breed that perfectly fits your lifestyle is the single most important decision you have to make. This topic is so broad that we cannot cover it in just a few paragraphs here. In itself it requires several pages, lots of reading of doggy descriptions, watching videos, and speaking with breeders.

And you may well have fallen in love with a particular breed from seeing it on the big screen or TV... but it is paramount that you make sure your decision is based on research or personal experience. This way you can truly know if the breed is a good fit for you.

The most important things that you have to keep in mind when you do your research is how your chosen breed will fit into your daily routine and lifestyle, and your living conditions. You have to decide whether you are capable of doing the necessary work the chosen breed normally requires (feeding, exercise, grooming)... and if your home is suitable for the dog considering its size and its energy level. Having allergies, the climate in your location, and children in the family all need to be considered. And regardless of breed, dogs are social animals and dislike being isolated. Caring for a dog takes time, and the amount necessary varies depending on the breed.

Socialization

Socialization is about the forming of social bonds and the ability of the puppy to integrate into human society, and family life. This is a lifelong process, but socialization starts even before the puppy is born. A puppy will have a very difficult start if the parents were kept in a small cage or in a miserable condition.

A dog that is not given proper socialization early in life can hardly or never be rehabilitated later. They are far more likely to struggle to fit into home life, and be very timid, or misbehave and cause disruption.

The most critical period is in the first three months with the breeder. In the first four weeks socialization happens with the dam and littermates, as the puppy receives its first life-lessons. In the second month there is gentle introductions to humans and other animals, which becomes more frequent. In the third month pups continue to have positive socialization with people and other animals; and also begin to be introduced to new places, as they start to be bolder and more ready to explore.

It’s very important that the breeder ensures that the puppies get used to interacting with people and with the environment around them on a regular basis (objects, sounds, different situations). With these early experiences the breeder can establish a solid foundation for the puppy’s future socialization. This is why it is important you choose your pedigree dog from a responsible breeder.

Choosing the Right Breeder

Some people actually prefer to choose a breeder first, rather than the puppy. Either way you must put your trust in a breeder before you reserve your dog. And you can only do so if you feel confident in their reputation. It is our aim to ensure breeders provide as much information as possible to help you make the best choice.

Consider all the information a breeder provides, but also the info that is missing. It is preferable to choose a Breeder that has their own Profile Page on Wuuff, where you can find more information, so there is even more to help you decide:

  • Their experience
  • The number of breeds they have
  • Their commitments as a breeder
  • The adult dogs, their health screening and show results
  • Whether the breeder has a verified kennel name
  • Do they provide a guarantee or a contract

These are just to mention a few...

Remember, if you want to choose a puppy responsibly you should look at not just the photo but all the information about the puppy. And then check the information about the parents and what is included in the price with the puppy. Also the quality of the photos can be a good indicator of how professional the breeder is.

After choosing your puppy, a good breeder will provide you with further help and advice if you request it. We certainly suggest that you choose a breeder who is excited to talk about their breed, as it is a good sign that the breeder will be able to help you later down the road.

A responsible breeder, will most likely be curious about you, and you may sometimes find them to be very inquisitive. But do not take this as a personal intrusion. A good breeder knows that if they get satisfying answers to their questions, the dog will go to a good home. A breeder should advise you if they think the breed is not for you and they can also help you to choose which puppy is best for you and your family’s lifestyle.

A good breeder feels a strong connection with their puppy and wants the very best for them. Financial gain is not the motivation for a responsible breeder, purely the necessity to maintain their high standards.

Reviews matter

One of the unique features of Wuuff is the verified reviews.

When choosing a breeder you should also consider the amount and quality of the reviews, as they are based on real, first-hand experiences of puppy lovers like you. Our reviews are meant to indicate if a breeder is trustworthy and honest, and if they can be relied upon for advice and help.

You cannot rate or review a breeder unless you have paid through Wuuff, or if the Breeder’s Profile enables reviews. This is how we provide relevant and 100% accurate information about the breeders and buyers. Find out more here.

Considering the Price

Owning a dog is expensive, regardless of adopting or buying. In any case, if you want a healthy, truly beautiful dog with great character, try not to save on the purchase price, after all it is a one time only amount. Getting a puppy for a little less can result in very costly vet bills later in life.

Amongst pedigree dogs the price can vary a great deal. This can depend on the dog’s future show potential, the parents’ bloodline, their show achievements and health screenings. On the other hand, a dog that appears cheaper, while still from a reputable kennel, does not necessarily mean less quality. Do not judge the dog or the breeder based on the price only. Do your research and if everything about the breeder looks good, then possibly they simply consider the puppy not suitable for breeding or showing, but good as a family pet.

Finally, prices are not universal, even within a country, and there can be especially large differences in other countries for the same breed.

For breeders, responsible breeding takes money, time and effort to maintain a proper environment for the dogs and the litter. This includes proper nutrition, regular vet care, and compulsory health screenings to ensure the dogs are healthy.

And the breeder will spend an immense amount of time and energy and, if necessary, often will work through the night to ensure that the puppies will grow up to be beautiful, happy and balanced dogs that you can enjoy for 10-15 years. We believe the final result is just as important to you too.

Pedigree

Many people consider the pedigree to be just a piece of paper that increases the price of the puppy. In truth, a pedigree has more significance. First of all it proves that the dog is purebred. It also assumes that the parents have met the requirements for breeding. This includes their appearance and breed conformation, as well as correct temperament.

Some breeders may want to convince you that the pedigree -- and everything it entails -- is unnecessary and expensive, and this is the reason why their dogs do not have one. However it’s also untrue. Getting a certificate of pedigree costs around 30 euros, but for the breeder to get to the point of receiving a pedigree it is far more expensive (health checks, exhibitions, etc). Of course a dog without a pedigree could still be purebred but when you think about it, what is the proof?

In many ways a pedigree acts like a seal of approval, the breeder has literally put their name to their puppy so their connection is permanent and they can be traced and contacted easily.  A backyard breeder offering no pedigree can easily walk away after, as there is nothing connecting them to the puppy.

For this reason only dogs with pedigrees (including birth certificates) are allowed to be posted on Wuuff.

The Sire and Dam

When choosing a purebred dog, the three pillars of health-personality-looks should always be the guiding principles. And there is no better indicator of these than the parents of a puppy.

Kennel clubs will advise you to get information about the puppy's parents from a breeder, so you get a better idea of what you can expect from your dog… as they say, the apple doesn’t fall far from the tree. However Wuuff has gone further, by allowing and encouraging breeders to include this information within the puppy ads.

On Wuuff you can look at the parents’ details on the puppy’s page to gain a better picture about the expected future qualities of the puppy. Consider:

  • How do they look?
  • How big are they?
  • What kind of temperament do they have?
  • Have they achieved any titles or awards?
  • Have they been health tested?

Dog shows and Sport Results

Many people outside the dog world do not understand conformation shows, or ability and sport exams. But showing a dog is an important part of establishing its quality and evaluating its behavior in such a situation.

Dogs that never leave their yard may have unknown traits (such as aggression or fear) that can only reveal themselves in a new, foreign environment. While titles prove on many occasions that a dog has the perfect temperament for a given breed. And dog shows are not just about the character, but also provide a great opportunity to see the look and conformation of the dog.

Look on the puppy’s page for the titles earned and exams passed by the dog’s parents.

Vaccinations and Deworming Schedule

It’s beyond argument that vaccinations and deworming are important, effective, and often the only thing that saves puppies’ lives. Recognizing this importance, only puppies that have, or will receive, all required vaccinations and dewormings are permitted to be posted on Wuuff.

Read more about the suggested vaccinations and dewormings a dog must receive.

Microchip

This is for the individual identification of the dog. The vet will insert it into the dog, in most cases, at the same time as the six-week vaccination. At the very latest the dog must be chipped when four months old.

In most countries, the microchip is a legal requirement, so do not collect any dog without this. Following the purchase of the puppy, your veterinarian should register the dog’s chip to your name. With this easy step you can protect yourself from later inconvenience.

Wuuff requires that each dog posted on our site receives a microchip before it gets to the new owner.

Breeder’s Guarantee and Contract

It is important to find out what kind of guarantee is provided with your puppy. There are many questions you must consider when making a responsible decision to choose a puppy. Such as… What happens if you find the puppy has a serious health condition? If you can no longer care for the puppy, will the breeder take it back or help you re-home the puppy?

Look at the puppy’s page to see if the breeder’s guarantee is offered with the puppy. Also, in the Breeder’s Profile Page read the breeder’s commitments, to find answers for the questions above.

Photos

In the world of smartphones and digital cameras, it is expected that we can obtain as many pictures about the chosen puppy as possible. However, in a standard litter there may be 4-10 puppies and a photoshoot requires considerable preparation because a breeder will not want to produce poor quality pictures of their puppies. Even in the cleanest kennel puppies get a little dirty during feeding and playing, so they have to get prepared for a photoshoot, which they may not particularly like (and like babies who often don’t like to dress up, a puppy does not like to be brushed either). Taking all this into account, please do not be disappointed if you receive only weekly photos of the puppy, after you make a reservation. Please try to avoid unnecessary stress for the breeder and the puppy.

Getting Ready to Receive your Puppy

We promote responsible dog keeping and seek to fight back against puppy mills and backyard breeders selling underaged dogs. For this reason, the date when the puppy is ready to enter it’s new home, indicated on the puppy’s page, is always set no earlier than 8 weeks from the date of birth. Please note when buying a dog from another country that the puppy may not be allowed to travel until four months of age, and in some cases the wait can be even longer.

Read more about what you need to know before receiving your puppy.