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Old 08.09.2010, 12:12
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How to spot a reputable breeder

With the recent unfortunate incident of first time owners not doing sufficient research before buying a new puppy and unethical breeders out there - especially those across the border, preying on potential dog owners due to the high Swiss prices for a pure breed, I thought it will be great to start a thread for anyone who wants to go down the breeder route. Lots of information has already been posted on rescue dogs and I think the pure breeds deserve a thread of their own.

SOURCE: American Humane Society

So, you've decided to get a dog. You're prepared to feed, exercise, train, go for dog classes, clean up after, work through problems with, and love a dog every day for the next ten to fifteen years.

You've evaluated your lifestyle and know exactly what sort of dog you're looking for (eg: a high energy dog to go running with, or a more sedate dog to lounge on the couch with), and you know that you need to seek out your desired characteristics in an individual dog, not a breed, because a breed is no guarantee of temperament or likes and dislikes.

You've checked out the purebred rescue group for your preferred breed, but still haven't found "The One." In the end, if you've decided to buy a dog from a breeder, you'll want to support one who has their dogs' best interests at heart. So how do you identify a compassionate and responsible breeder?

First and foremost, good breeders don’t sell their puppies to the first person who shows up with cash in hand.


A good breeder will:


- Keep dogs in the home as part of the family—not outside in kennel runs

- Only breeds one or two types of dogs and is knowledgeable about the breeds

- Doesn’t always have puppies available but keeps a list of interested people for the next available litter

- Has dogs who appear happy and healthy and don’t shy away from visitors

- Shows you where the dogs spend their time—in a clean, well-maintained area

- Encourages you to spend time with the puppy’s parents—at a minimum, the pup’s mother—when you visit

- Has a strong relationship with one or more local veterinarians and shows you individual records of veterinary visits for your puppy

- Explains in detail the potential genetic problems inherent to the breed (every breed has a specific genetic predisposition) and provides documentation that the puppy’s parents and grandparents have been tested to ensure that they are free of these genetic problems

- Offers guidance for the care and training of your puppy and is available for assistance after you take your puppy home

- Provides references from other families who have purchased puppies

- Feeds high quality “premium” brand pet food

- Is actively involved with local, state, and national clubs that specialize in the specific breed. They may even compete the dogs in conformation trials, obedience trials, or tracking and agility trials

- Encourages multiple visits and wants your entire family to meet the puppy

- Provides you with a written contract and health guarantee and allows plenty of time for you to read it thoroughly; the breeder should not require that you use a specific veterinarian

In addition, you’ll want a breeder who requires you to:

- Explain why you want a dog

- Explain who in your family will be responsible for the pup’s daily care, who will attend training classes, where the dog will spend most of his or her time, and what “rules” have been decided upon for the
puppy—for example, whether the dog will be allowed on furniture

- Provide proof from your landlord that you are allowed to have a dog

- Provide a veterinary reference

- Sign a contract that you will spay or neuter the dog unless you will be actively showing him or her (only applies to show-quality dogs)

- Sign a contract stating that you will return the dog to the breeder should you be unable to keep the dog at any point in the dog’s life

If the breeder you’re working with doesn’t meet all of these minimum criteria, walk away. Remember, a dog will likely live for 10 to 20 years, so it’s well worth investing some time to be sure you’re working with a reputable breeder who breeds healthy, happy dogs.

Resources:

http://www.skg.ch/

The SKG has been around since 1883 here in Switzerland and it is the body that represents canine interests and healthy breeding in this country. All SKG registered breeders have to undergo stringent scrutiny and tests to ensure that they uphold the high standards of breeding.

Prices will not vary much from breeder to breeder. The community here is small and very controlled. You pay for what you get. Quality and the assurance that your puppy comes from healthy parents who have been screened for the common genetic breed problems before being allowed to mate.

A list of breeders can be found here:
http://www.skg.ch/pid/104.html

There are also groups of dogs out there who have their own separate clubs but are all SKG registered. Some that I can think of at the moment:

Retriever/labrador club:
http://www.retriever.ch/

Terrier club:
http://www.terrierclub.ch/

Bulldogs club:
http://www.suisse-bully.ch/

Rottweiler club:
http://www.rottweilerhunde-club.ch/deutsch/indexde.htm

Beagle club:
http://www.beagleclub.ch/

Daschund club:
http://www.dackel.ch/

For anyone who is thinking of doing down the breeder route, please do not hesitate to PM me if you've any questions about procedures etc. I've bought a dog from a SKG registered breeder less than two years ago and couldnt be happier.

Dog Breeding in Switzerland
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Last edited by summerrain; 24.11.2010 at 13:54. Reason: More info about dog clubs
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Old 08.09.2010, 12:14
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Re: How to spot a reputable breeder in Switzerland

I thought this was going to be another "dating in Switzerland" thread
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Old 08.09.2010, 12:28
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Re: How to spot a reputable breeder in Switzerland

All of that is spot on summerrain.

Our Toy Poodle called Bruce agrees 100%.
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Old 08.09.2010, 12:38
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Re: How to spot a reputable breeder in Switzerland

Good post, Summerrain!

I'll add another criteria:

Has the breeder asked if you have completed the SKN?

The TschV is now fully in force - meaning that any first time dog buyer/adopter is required to have completed the theory portion of the Sachkundenachweis before purchasing or adopting a dog. While the law places the onus on the buyer/adopter, an ethical breeder will not allow one of his/her puppies to leave without having seen proof that the new owner in in compliance with the law.

If your breeder has not mentioned the SKN, perhaps you should look for your pup elsewhere.


ETA:

Another thing to add: Under the TSchV (Art 70), puppies may not be separated from their mothers (or the Amme, had that been necessary) before the 56th day. One may reserve a puppy well before that, and many good breeders will encourage you to visit during that time so that the pup gets to know you. But you may not take a puppy home earlier. Should a breeder suggest that you take a puppy younger than that, not only should you walk away, but you should also let the breed club know.

Last edited by meloncollie; 08.09.2010 at 13:49.
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Old 08.09.2010, 12:46
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Re: How to spot a reputable breeder in Switzerland

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Don't look for a breeder... adopt! Just thought I would add that as well..
If you read the beginning of my post, I've said that there are lots of information for people who want to adopt, but not enough on breeders.

The objective of this thread is to provide a source of info for people who want to go down the breeder route, and not for anyone to bring their adoption propoganda into this - which I have absolutely nothing against, and even encourage.
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Old 08.09.2010, 13:12
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Re: How to spot a reputable breeder

Very useful information, Thanks!


One questions....what is an acceptable age to take over the pet?
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Old 08.09.2010, 13:14
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Re: How to spot a reputable breeder

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Very useful information, Thanks!


One questions....what is an acceptable age to take over the pet?
The acceptable time for a puppy to leave its mum is 8 weeks onwards.
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Old 08.09.2010, 14:53
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Re: How to spot a reputable breeder

Should be made a sticky. There should also be another one, especially for people who have not had pets yet and imagine that they are some cuddly toys that can be thrown away once you get bored. Before taking a pet, they should consider that

They are not cute and well-behaved all the time. Or most of the time.
They scratch, pee, bark and meow, whine and howl, run away, bite, jump, get hit by cars, fight, chew, drool, cause allregies, eat your best shoes and the new sofa etc etc
They need attention - walking, feeding, training, grooming etc etc. all the time. even when it is not convenient for you.
They are expensive. Food, supplies, training, vet visits..
You cannot move to wherever you want to any more, but have to consider your 4-legged family members, who are not welcome or woudl feel comfortable everywhere.
You cannot just go on holiday, but need to find a kennel/petsitter and even then you are constantly worried and call your sitter twice a day to check if the pets are allright (or is it just me?). You cannot even go out for drinks after work on a moments notice, but have to go home first to walk the dog.
Can you do this for the next 15 or so years?
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Old 08.09.2010, 16:11
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Re: How to spot a reputable breeder

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Should be made a sticky. There should also be another one, especially for people who have not had pets yet and imagine that they are some cuddly toys that can be thrown away once you get bored. Before taking a pet, they should consider that

They are not cute and well-behaved all the time. Or most of the time.
They scratch, pee, bark and meow, whine and howl, run away, bite, jump, get hit by cars, fight, chew, drool, cause allregies, eat your best shoes and the new sofa etc etc
They need attention - walking, feeding, training, grooming etc etc. all the time. even when it is not convenient for you.
They are expensive. Food, supplies, training, vet visits..
You cannot move to wherever you want to any more, but have to consider your 4-legged family members, who are not welcome or woudl feel comfortable everywhere.
You cannot just go on holiday, but need to find a kennel/petsitter and even then you are constantly worried and call your sitter twice a day to check if the pets are allright (or is it just me?). You cannot even go out for drinks after work on a moments notice, but have to go home first to walk the dog.
Can you do this for the next 15 or so years?

ALL good points!! And no... It's not just you
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Old 31.10.2011, 00:26
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Re: How to spot a reputable breeder

Oh !!!! yes... I remember everything! When he was 6 weeks old was coming to the bedroom 5 o'clock in the morning and waking me up, 4 month old he rip £3600 Italian leather sofa, 6months - all my trainers stolen ,my wife bough designers jacket on sale, he destroyed it. He done so much damage, ....the garden look like hose racing track,tripe stinks, ......but ones when I was fixing my car in the garage ,my kid fall down in the deep pond and he saved her life, 9 months ago(he was 3 years old) I was waiting my wife from work (she is nurse) and suddenly the dog get mad ,When I open front door he ran away , I ran after him .....80 meters away from our house ,in London ,in St John's wood my wife was attacked ,......we got him.....after this we moved to small town in France, all family....he fill good here.. Oh yes you wiil fill always guilty for living him alone, you will get a flu walking him in a rain, you will look at his poo ,you will pay the vet bill ,all your life will be ed... but ....,get yourself a dog and he will be your best friend, and he will listen to you, does not matter what you say, and he will be happy to die for you, and when he dies you will remember him,and know he will wait for you on a rainbow bridge.
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Old 16.02.2012, 12:45
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Re: How to spot a reputable breeder

Adding to this thread, as lately there have been several posts asking for breeder recommendations in neighboring countries.

The Federation Cynologique Internationale (FCI) is the umbrella organization of the kennel clubs worldwide. To find the kennel club in a given country, see here:
http://www.fci.be/membres.aspx


Once one has found the appropriate kennel club (SKG or the VDH for instance) contact that organization for a list of breed clubs - this is where you will usually find a listing of breeders.

Last edited by meloncollie; 17.02.2012 at 23:06.
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Old 16.02.2012, 12:55
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Re: How to spot a reputable breeder

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Adding to this thread...
Thanks for pulling this back up. I was trying to remember where it went!
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Old 09.03.2012, 10:48
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Re: How to spot a reputable breeder

Personally I think money should not play a part in the selection of a breeder (within reason). Compared to the cost of food and vet bills etc the extra cost of buying from a reputable breeder is a drop in the ocean.
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Old 29.01.2013, 15:48
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Re: How to spot a reputable breeder

Does anyone have information/links on cat breeders in Switzerland (Zurich)?
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Old 23.03.2013, 11:24
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Re: How to spot a reputable breeder

Another article in Le MATIN newspaper yesterday, warning people re the sale of puppies from puppy farms coming from Eastern countries, and sold cheap. The under-cover documentary tells a dreadful tale, of mums being kept in cages all their short lives, having to produce 2 litters a year. Puppies being taken from mum far too young, and often having all sorts of hidden medical problems, and behaviour/psychological problems. etc. Chihuhahas seem to be the most prevalent breed produced and sold this way - they are bought for very little and resold here for large sums of money, and yet much cheaper than reputable breeders. Please, do not support those vile and cruel breeders.
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Old 04.11.2014, 15:49
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Re: How to spot a reputable breeder

Hi All
I always have dogs from shelters
like life, not all factors can be calculated for those married or divorced
you probobly know what i mean...
having said that..adopting a dog from a shelter is an act of mercy that is intself a reward.
I feel sad for those buying pure bred dogs knowing that mixed breeds will have most of the time less health issues though more unpredictable factors for sure
My dog has her issues but she is a love child, a mixed breed from a good shelter .
I do not see any point in getting a dog for status reason, nor would i want a dog as a result of breeding,
i love my baby, she is very intelligent and is a love child from a very good animal shelter, Gossau tierheim.
vist animal shelters , many have profiles online
Good idea to mix those gene pools, for those who also married foreigners, i think the message is clear.
Good luck and remember, a dog is like a marriage without a divorce
though i wish some men could be placed in shelters before being released again for breeding...JK




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With the recent unfortunate incident of first time owners not doing sufficient research before buying a new puppy and unethical breeders out there - especially those across the border, preying on potential dog owners due to the high Swiss prices for a pure breed, I thought it will be great to start a thread for anyone who wants to go down the breeder route. Lots of information has already been posted on rescue dogs and I think the pure breeds deserve a thread of their own.

SOURCE: American Humane Society

So, you've decided to get a dog. You're prepared to feed, exercise, train, go for dog classes, clean up after, work through problems with, and love a dog every day for the next ten to fifteen years.









You've evaluated your lifestyle and know exactly what sort of dog you're looking for (eg: a high energy dog to go running with, or a more sedate dog to lounge on the couch with), and you know that you need to seek out your desired characteristics in an individual dog, not a breed, because a breed is no guarantee of temperament or likes and dislikes.

You've checked out the purebred rescue group for your preferred breed, but still haven't found "The One." In the end, if you've decided to buy a dog from a breeder, you'll want to support one who has their dogs' best interests at heart. So how do you identify a compassionate and responsible breeder?

First and foremost, good breeders don’t sell their puppies to the first person who shows up with cash in hand.


A good breeder will:


- Keep dogs in the home as part of the family—not outside in kennel runs

- Only breeds one or two types of dogs and is knowledgeable about the breeds

- Doesn’t always have puppies available but keeps a list of interested people for the next available litter

- Has dogs who appear happy and healthy and don’t shy away from visitors

- Shows you where the dogs spend their time—in a clean, well-maintained area

- Encourages you to spend time with the puppy’s parents—at a minimum, the pup’s mother—when you visit

- Has a strong relationship with one or more local veterinarians and shows you individual records of veterinary visits for your puppy

- Explains in detail the potential genetic problems inherent to the breed (every breed has a specific genetic predisposition) and provides documentation that the puppy’s parents and grandparents have been tested to ensure that they are free of these genetic problems

- Offers guidance for the care and training of your puppy and is available for assistance after you take your puppy home

- Provides references from other families who have purchased puppies

- Feeds high quality “premium” brand pet food

- Is actively involved with local, state, and national clubs that specialize in the specific breed. They may even compete the dogs in conformation trials, obedience trials, or tracking and agility trials

- Encourages multiple visits and wants your entire family to meet the puppy

- Provides you with a written contract and health guarantee and allows plenty of time for you to read it thoroughly; the breeder should not require that you use a specific veterinarian

In addition, you’ll want a breeder who requires you to:

- Explain why you want a dog

- Explain who in your family will be responsible for the pup’s daily care, who will attend training classes, where the dog will spend most of his or her time, and what “rules” have been decided upon for the
puppy—for example, whether the dog will be allowed on furniture

- Provide proof from your landlord that you are allowed to have a dog

- Provide a veterinary reference

- Sign a contract that you will spay or neuter the dog unless you will be actively showing him or her (only applies to show-quality dogs)

- Sign a contract stating that you will return the dog to the breeder should you be unable to keep the dog at any point in the dog’s life

If the breeder you’re working with doesn’t meet all of these minimum criteria, walk away. Remember, a dog will likely live for 10 to 20 years, so it’s well worth investing some time to be sure you’re working with a reputable breeder who breeds healthy, happy dogs.

Resources:

http://www.skg.ch/

The SKG has been around since 1883 here in Switzerland and it is the body that represents canine interests and healthy breeding in this country. All SKG registered breeders have to undergo stringent scrutiny and tests to ensure that they uphold the high standards of breeding.

Prices will not vary much from breeder to breeder. The community here is small and very controlled. You pay for what you get. Quality and the assurance that your puppy comes from healthy parents who have been screened for the common genetic breed problems before being allowed to mate.

A list of breeders can be found here:
http://www.skg.ch/pid/104.html

There are also groups of dogs out there who have their own separate clubs but are all SKG registered. Some that I can think of at the moment:

Retriever/labrador club:
http://www.retriever.ch/

Terrier club:
http://www.terrierclub.ch/

Bulldogs club:
http://www.suisse-bully.ch/

Rottweiler club:
http://www.rottweilerhunde-club.ch/deutsch/indexde.htm

Beagle club:
http://www.beagleclub.ch/

Daschund club:
http://www.dackel.ch/

For anyone who is thinking of doing down the breeder route, please do not hesitate to PM me if you've any questions about procedures etc. I've bought a dog from a SKG registered breeder less than two years ago and couldnt be happier.

Dog Breeding in Switzerland
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Old 04.11.2014, 16:30
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Re: How to spot a reputable breeder

Starshine, while I applaud all who rescue dogs in need, this is the wrong thread.

My life is devoted to rescue work. Yet I also encourage those who seek out a responsible, ethical breeder, who makes an informed choice and a life long commitment. I do not see any incongruency in my stance.

You see, my goal is that every dog born will find loving family who will commit to giving him the best possible life for his natural lifetime.

I used to be more strident in my promotion of rescue, but the 20-plus years I have been rehoming abandoned dogs, 20-plus years of shedding tears over the irresponsiblity of humankind, 20-plus years of feeling like the boy with his finger in the dike as the problem only grows worse... these 20-plus years have taught me that another approach is needed if we are ever to get to the root cause of the homeless pet problem.

I now see that where the dog comes from is less important than the commitment an owner makes to the dog. It is fostering that committment, educating owners as to their responsibilities, that I now see as critical.

Toward that end, if a family feel that a puppy from a breeder is the right option for their situation then that is the right way for them to go. A good breeder will ensure that the family understand the nature of the commitment they are about to make.

Good breeders are the first line of defense against more dogs ending up in shelters.

We need to stop the breeder vs rescue war. Good breeders and good rescue groups should be allies.

Irresponsible breeders, BYBs, the filthy barstewards running battery farms, the idiots producing mutts and calling them silly trendy names - these need to be stamped out, no doubt about that. I will always work against these evil practices.

But this thread is not about the dark side.

The good breeders, those who are working hard to further the health and temperament of our beloved dogs, who carefully select responsible families who will love and care for their pups for the pups' entire natural lives, who will step in and help in an emergency - these folks should be applauded for the good work they do.

Yes, if one is interested and has the ability I would hope that rescue would be the first choice when one is looking for a dog, and will do all I can to encourage that. Rescue is, and always will be, my choice. But it would be naive to say that it is the right choice for everyone.

When a breeder is the right choice for a family, then all who love dogs should help that family find a good, responsible, ethical breeder. That is exactly what this thread is about.

After all, the goal of every rescuer is to be put out of a job. I dream of the day when the only way to get a dog is through a responsible, ethical breeder.

.

Last edited by meloncollie; 05.11.2014 at 08:53.
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Old 17.01.2015, 14:16
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Re: How to spot a reputable breeder

In terms of the reply that 'the acceptable time for a puppy to leave its mother is 8 weeks', that is true - it has been the acceptable/normal age that puppies are sold off at. Some breeders sell puppies younger - don't buy them.

I disagree with 8 weeks - I think a puppy should remain with the mother a minimum of 12 weeks. This means the puppy can wean naturally - in some cases this continues until the 7th or 8th week, and then the puppy has more socialisation time, play time, and adjustment time for food etc. This socialization period is between 8 and 12 weeks. I have heard from dog trainers that a puppy that is longer w[/I]ith its mother does tend to be better socialised.

The puppy is then more 'independent' to take on a new life, often, though of course not always, a life where it is the only dog in its new home. I have never understood the hurry of some breeders to sell puppies at 8 weeks.
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Old 17.01.2015, 14:55
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Re: How to spot a reputable breeder

Jacquiam, just so you know, the legal age under the TSchV before which a puppy cannot be sold is 56 days - eight weeks - which is I think what 'acceptable' meant in that post.

But yes, I agree that 10-12 weeks is much better for the pups.

It is very important that a buyer understands first what is required of an early socialization program and then evaluates the the breeder against that standard.

A breeder who keeps the pups 12 weeks but leaves mom and pups isolated in a whelping kennel or otherwise unsocialized is far worse than a breeder who has a solid early socialization program, all the relevant developmental equipment indoors and out, who has ensured that the pups meet and greet people and other animals as is age-appropriate - but who hands over the pups at 8 weeks.

Unfortunately many buyers don't realize that time spent with the mother is only one facet of necessary socialization. Today our dogs live in a human world - so the breeder (and new owner) have a lot of work to do in order to give the pup the best start in life.

The breeder with a solid early socialization program and who keeps the pups 10-12 weeks is to be commended.
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Old 20.03.2015, 19:55
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Re: How to spot a reputable breeder

I personally am also a rescuer
But i did go to a breeder recommended by our Vet... I flew to Berlin to get her , paid a fortune , and later found out that her microchip began with the numbers for the country of Romania ...YEP , purchased for 50 Euros from a puppy mill , papers false, passport also a scam, we love her no matter what. I now just go to the US when I want to purchase another dog, its easier , and saves a bit of money. I have imported 3 horses and 1 puppy , not including the 2 dogs and cat I arrived with 9 years ago. This breeder that falsified all the paperwork was a nice woman, even gave me a hand book with the dog and how to care for her . She is a wonderful little dog regardless
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