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Would you buy a pup if ...

(32 Posts)
cheesentoast Fri 03-Feb-17 23:25:38

... both parents are KC registered but neither has been showed? Past pups we've bought have all had parents who have been in the showring. The parents of this pup haven't. Everything seems above board with health checks, not a puppy farm, breeder recommeded by reputable source etc.


tabulahrasa Fri 03-Feb-17 23:36:34

No, Without showing, competing in something or working I don't see why they'd be breeding those dogs.

TrionicLettuce Fri 03-Feb-17 23:38:52

Have either parent done anything other than showing? Sports? Working? Anything involving measurable proficiency or independent evaluation? Do either have particularly rare lines?

If the answer to all the above is no I'd definitely be asking why they decided to breed from that particular bitch and why they put her to that particular dog.

Personally I generally wouldn't go to a breeder who doesn't do something with their dogs to assess their quality beyond them being nice pets. The only time I'd compromise on this is if the mating was specifically planned to improve genetic diversity in the breed by introducing very new foreign lines. My current three who were purchased as puppies all came from a successful show breeder. For the future I've got a breeder in mind who both shows and does breed appropriate sports with her dogs.

WombattingFree Fri 03-Feb-17 23:41:18

Are you talking about the morals of those who are breeding?

I guess not all family trees started working/showing from the off and had to just begin breeding. I would look at how many litters have been had before and how long the dogs had been owned. They could be breeding good lines for people who want to show - they may just not want to show themselves.

cheesentoast Fri 03-Feb-17 23:49:49

Gosh, quick replies! No to all those questions asked by Trionic. They've bred so as to keep a pup from their bitch. The breeder told me that she had hoped to show her and was advised to by an experienced breeder of same breed, but simply life got in the way and she didn't get round to it.

Wombat, not really talking about the morals of breeding per sé but what you have said in your second paragraph pretty much hits the nail on the head. Is there anything wrong with buying from someone who doesn't show but is passionate about the breed and continuing a good line? This is the second and last litter.

Thanks for the comments!

tabulahrasa Fri 03-Feb-17 23:56:36

The thing is a good line by itself is meaningless really, if there's nothing to show that those dogs are something other than just nice pet dogs, what's the point in breeding them? Morally I mean.

If the bitch was going to be shown, is from good lines and a good example of the breed, but life got in the way of their plans...why didn't they use a stud who had been independently judged as being a good example at shows?

Do they own both parents? Because it's hugely unlikely that anyone owns two dogs who are good examples of the breed and that complement each other's traits.

cheesentoast Sat 04-Feb-17 00:06:48

Completely understand what you're saying tabula, especially having experience of the importance of bloodlines in another industry. Mum and Dad definitely aren't owned by the same people. I guess this is what's causing my hesitation .... like I said we've only bought dogs from show parents before. They've been fabulou and much loved pets. But we don't show and we certainly have no intention of breeding - this pup will be a pet, so I question whether we need the full show background given that if all health checks etc are above board.

Someone within the breed, put me in contact with a person who had used her stud dog. She had a suitable pup but I walked away because she was clearly in to simply to make money - not keeping a pup and pups were overpriced given the breeding on the mum's side. So I know that I'm sensible enough that if we decide to go and see this litter that I can and will walk away if I have any qualms.

I suppose I'm wondering whether everyone who buys from a breeder as opposed to rescue ensures the parents have some sort of 'form'.

Rambling really!!

WombattingFree Sat 04-Feb-17 02:24:04

I bought from someone who was breeding to keep the lines going, they were good on the health checks but they didn't show.

I own 2 Pugs, one who was bought by previous owners as a stud and I rehomed him once he'd served his purpose and had been snipped. They couldn't even tell me his name as I don't think he had a permanent one. My poor boy!

My little girl is from a good line, has little to no known health issues from that line (and aside from a few general dog issues). I bought from the breeder because she was passionate about her babies, loved all the puppies, kept one for herself and she had the mum running riot in the home. She was clearly a breed enthusiast who only bred her bitch twice and mine was from the last of her litter. Gut instinct works best in these situations smile sounds like you know what you're doing

TrionicLettuce Sat 04-Feb-17 02:25:18

Just thought I'd add a caveat to my previous post as I was answering very much from the perspective of my own breed.

There are certain breeds which have such exaggerated conformation that it puts them at high risk of health issues. Unfortunately at the moment in most of these breeds there's a lack of movement towards more moderate dogs being rewarded in the show ring. When it comes to these sorts of breeds I'd be perfectly happy with a breeder who didn't show but bred for improved conformation and health.

I'd still prefer for them to be out doing things with their dogs but realistically a lot of these breeds are never going to wow the agility world or anything like that so I'd certainly settle for enough taking part in activities to at least show a good level of fitness and sound temperament.

Nemosnemsis Sat 04-Feb-17 05:53:18

I've got no time for 'backyard breeders' but I don't think involement in the showing scene is always a reliable indicator. For one thing, I know that some show breeders are so competitive that the primary concern becomes conformation and 'show quality', with temperament and suitability as a pet taking a back seat. As wombatt says, gut instinct is sometimes the best way forward.

cheesentoast Sat 04-Feb-17 08:02:22

Thanks ao much all of you. When I spoke to the breeder, I liked her. The bitch is a very much loved family dog - Facebook is very enlightening 😁. We'll see what the pups themselves are like ... afterall, we may not like them!

Thewolfsjustapuppy Sat 04-Feb-17 08:08:10

My pup came from parents who had never been shown and a breeder wh wasn't interested in showing. She is a rare breed with only 300 or so pups registered from the breed last year so it is very hard to find one. I new the breeder long before she had the litter I loved her bitch and I was so excited when she said she was having a litter. It never occurred to me that technically that made her a back yard breeder. On the flip side if only show breeders bred this breed there would only be 50 or so a year.
I wanted a pet but I also specifically wanted this breed, What I have is the dog that has exceeded all my expectations.she conforms to breed standards and past her parents has an amazing pedigree but her personality is genuinely outstanding. She was loved and very well socialised with her litter mates and every pup in the litter found an outstanding home (there were nearly 50 applicants for the litter so plenty to choose from).
I guess I have justified my choice of puppy breeder by saying that it depends on the breed and the circumstances.

frenchfancy Sat 04-Feb-17 08:13:05

I would. Unless I wanted to show myself then I wouldn't see it as a criteria. Our DDog wouldn't pass the show criteria for her breed but it doesn't stop her being a lovely dog.

Evilstepmum01 Sat 04-Feb-17 08:17:41

I wouldn't buy a puppy. I adopt. Look at your breed rescue? I'm not having a go, I just can't understand why folk buy a puppy when thousands of lovely, some pedigrees, dogs are put down every day because there's not enough homes. Anyway, I hope you find the right bloodline or paper or whatever, very glad you've checked it's not a puppy farm!

Evilstepmum01 Sat 04-Feb-17 08:17:43

I wouldn't buy a puppy. I adopt. Look at your breed rescue? I'm not having a go, I just can't understand why folk buy a puppy when thousands of lovely, some pedigrees, dogs are put down every day because there's not enough homes. Anyway, I hope you find the right bloodline or paper or whatever, very glad you've checked it's not a puppy farm!

Nemosnemsis Sat 04-Feb-17 09:29:44

Evilstepmum The simple fact is, many dogs in rescue centres have behavioural issues of one sort or another. Not their fault of course, it's because their previous owners didn't bother to train and socialise them properly and then ended up with adolescent dogs they couldn't cope with. It's a lot harder (and less guaranteed) to undo someone elses damage than it is to train a puppy from scratch. It's not a job for a novice.

Most of the pedigree or 'designer cross' dogs that end up in rescues will have been bred at puppy farms, which comes with its own set of behavioural hang-ups, and means they are probably going to be a ticking time bomb for serious health problems.

It's great that you adopt rescues. I hope that one day in the future I will be in a position to offer a home to another rescue. A few years back I adopted an elderly spaniel in the early stages of heart failure that no one wanted. It was two years of heartbreak. I don't need to be 'held responsible' for the owners of these dogs who put them in shelters in the first place. I never have and never would abandon a dog. I think you should consider redirecting your vitriol and energy to the people out there that buy puppies on a whim from puppy farms, fail to rear them properly, then abandon them as soon as the going gets tough. Not to mention the puppy farms themselves.

TheoriginalLEM Sat 04-Feb-17 09:40:18

i would prefer a pet line anyway. I wouldn't want to encourage an industry that encourages animals that, for example, have breàthing difficulties, can only birth by cesarean etc etc just to fulfil a breed standard and look good in the show ring.

WombattingFree Sat 04-Feb-17 12:14:13

Nemo I agree. I'm technically unsuitable to Rescue a dog. But I will look to foster the rainbow bound dogs once my two go. How people leave these creatures during their time of need i dont know. Hats off to you and Nemospaniel. But yes... evilstepmum please leave your vitriol elsewhere and don't make this into an attack about people who chose to not foster or adopt dogs.

Ylvamoon Sat 04-Feb-17 12:52:32

A dog show is like a beauty pageant- the winner is (to some extent) in the eye of the judge.
On the other hand, some breeders spend years breeding dogs in the hope to produce that one winner - whatever the cost.

So, when you approach a breeder, make sure dogs are breed for temperament & type. There are lots of breeders (showing and not showing) who do just that.

QuestionableMouse Sat 04-Feb-17 14:08:40

Conformation showing isn't always good for the breed though. I'd rather have a healthy, functional pup than one whose form has been distorted to fit the ideals of the showing.

Eevee77 Sat 04-Feb-17 14:21:15

I wouldn't buy a dog with a strong show history unless I wanted a dog to show. Which isn't my thing. They're bred on looks and ridiculous KC standards. Health isn't a priority for a lot of breeders (not all obviously) they just want to tick their boxes and the dog wouldn't necessarily make a good family pet. I suppose it depends why you want a dog and how it's going to fit in with your life style. Much the same way, I wouldn't buy a dog with a strong working history because it's unlikely that I'd meet its mental and physical needs to learn and burn off energy.

I know some breeders who breed because they have genuinely lovely family dogs with a great health history and wonderful temperaments. They're very popular with family's who don't want working or show dogs for the reasons I stated above.

tabulahrasa Sat 04-Feb-17 15:21:13

"Our DDog wouldn't pass the show criteria for her breed but it doesn't stop her being a lovely dog."

It won't do smile

It's just if I'm going to pay someone for a puppy, I want their ethics to be better than breeds lovely pets for no particular reason.

Any dog from any source will more than likely end up being a lovely pet...

If someone has no reason to be breeding (btw whoever mentioned rare breeds, yes that's a reason) over and above that they have a nice dog, then I don't see any reason for them to be producing puppies.

Dogs bred from shown parents should be health tested, healthy and have a temperament suitable for the breed - showing alone isn't good enough, but, neither is healthy and nice.

With most breeds there's no shortage of them, so unless they have a specific reason to be breeding them and sufficient knowledge of the breed and lines and exactly what they're putting together and why...they shouldn't be breeding IMO.

It shouldn't be a case of pet vs show quality, good breeders should be producing dogs that are capable of both...and with most breeds you will find breeders doing exactly that.

Evilstepmum01 Sat 04-Feb-17 15:37:10


I apologise if you thought my post was vitriolic. It wasnt intended as a dig, I genuinely do not understand why you'd buy a pup. Pedigree or not, papers or not, show quality or not. I couldnt in good conscience put my want for a pedigree dog over the horrible situation in rescues all over the country.

Until breeding is regulated, I dont think I'll ever buy a pedigree pup. Personally, I believe all breeders should spend the day in the back of a rescue centre to appreciate the over population problem (NOT a personal attack, simply my opinion).

I guess we'll have to agree to disagree on this one grin

Oh, and my energy and vitriol do go towards illegal puppy farms etc!

LumelaMme Sat 04-Feb-17 16:26:07

Breedings of unshown dogs help to maintain the width of the gene pool of a particular breed. There is not much point there being X thousand puppies of Y breed produced every year if they all descend from a handful of sires (who are, if they are of the current show fashion in the breed, possibly related anyway). The effective population size of a lot of breeds is pitifully small, and provided the health and temperament of the dogs in question is up to scratch, keeping those genes flowing is a good thing.

I wouldn't, though, get a working breed puppy from unworked parents, even if I only wanted it as a pet, but that's my personal foible.

Nemosnemsis Sat 04-Feb-17 17:05:33

Evilstepmum of course your post is a dig, how can it not be?

You say you still don't understand why anyone would buy a puppy - did you read/understand my last post? And there's nothing wrong with loving a specific breed. I'd never be without my spaniels. If you suggested to me I got anything other than a spaniel, you may as well be suggesting I get a rabbit instead of a dog. It's not the same, many breeds have very particular personalities.

It's great that you would only have a rescue, I know plenty of people that say the same. I'm glad there are people like you out there. How many dogs have you rescued?

But you can't tar all breeders with the same brush. There are a few really great breeders out there, working hard to produce lovely family pets, and eradicate genetic disease and undesirable behaviour traits in their particular breed. Often operating at a considerable net loss because they are in it for the love of the dogs, not the money. We should be encouraging and supporting them, not persecuting them.

You have totally missed the point of this thread. The 'show quality' 'lines' etc mentioned by OP and others is all about how to find a responsibly bred puppy that has the best chance of growing into a happy, healthy family pet.

Oh and all our vitriol needs to be directed towards the legal puppy farms, as well as the illegal, and working towards a change in the law that allows them to exist. And introducing stricter regulation of all breeders. I also think we should bring back dog licensing. If you read any of my other posts on this board, you will see that I have absolutely no time for anyone who buys a puppy on a whim/buys from a puppy farm/fails to undertake the proper research. But you must realise that this does not apply to everyone who buys a puppy. FWIW, I have never paid for a puppy, nor owned a pedigree dog, in my entire adult life. I speak here not from self-defence, simply from a deep understanding of the complexities of the issue.

The world is also becoming overpopulated with humans. Do you also haunt the conception boards to have a go at the new mums-to-be for not adopting?

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