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Old 15.07.2007, 14:32
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Dog Breeders in Switzerland

Hi, can anyone help! Does Switzerland have a register of reputable dog breeders, like the Kennel Club does in the UK? I don't want to find myself buying one from a puppy farm!!

I used to have a King Charles Cavalier back in England, sadly she died 4 years ago but I now feel settled enough to have another puppy and want to be sure I am buying a healthly pedigree.

Many thanks, Cat
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Old 15.07.2007, 15:54
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Re: Dog Breeders in Switzerland

First, would you consider rescuing a dog? There are so many dogs in need of homes, and most dogs end up in rescue through no fault of their own. You will find dogs of every age in rescue, even puppies.

You could get in touch with this Cav rescue group:

http://www.cavaliere-in-not.de/

(In Germany - but they may know of dogs in Switzerland)

Also, the Swiss Cavalier club tries to help place cavs in need: (Click on 'Notvermittlung')

http://www.cavalierclub.ch/

And the Swiss-wide database for dogs needing new homes can be found at:

http://heimatlos.tierschutz.ch/

I haven't gone through to look for a cav, but there are certainly lots of adorable small dogs needing new families...

I would always encourage those looking for a four footed friend to consider rescue; so many great dogs, with so much love to give, waiting...

-----

But, if rescue is not right for you, please be very careful when going to a breeder - as you suspect, there are far too many unethical breeders and puppy farmers out there. Question any breeder thoroughly, make several visits to the site, insist on meeting both parents, review health records thoroughly, talk to other cav owners. Although SKG (kennel club) membership isn't an automatic guarantee of ethics, this is your best place to start.

The CKCS club of Switzerland will have a Züchtwart, a person responsible for keeping track of which breeder currently has or plans to have puppies. As mentioned above, contact them at:

http://www.cavalierclub.ch/

Click on 'Welpen/Jungunde' that information, or on 'Züchter' for a list of all breeders.

----------

But I would urge you to consider rescue among your options....
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Old 15.07.2007, 16:34
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Re: Dog Breeders in Switzerland

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- as you suspect, there are far too many unethical breeders and puppy farmers out there. Question any breeder thoroughly, make several visits to the site, insist on meeting both parents, review health records thoroughly, talk to other cav owners. Although SKG (kennel club) membership isn't an automatic guarantee of ethics, this is your best place to start.

Is there any evidence of this? I have a feeling that Switzerland doesn't have too many puppy farms and every breeder I contacted when looking for a dog appeared to be very professional. In fact, it was hard to pass the interviews and other requirements to prove my suitablitity to give a home to one of their dogs .
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Old 15.07.2007, 17:55
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Re: Dog Breeders in Switzerland

Swissbob,

Take a look in the free ads, local papers, on the grocery store notice boards, google 'hunde zu verkaufen' - you'll find people advertising puppys for sale - purpose bred cross breeds, non-papered 'purebreds', accidental litters, etc. Call a few, and ask some pointed questions. Breeding outside the SKG is not regulated.

For those who breed within the SKG/FCI the rule are strict, as you have seen. There are rules to determine if a dog is fit to breed, mandatory health checks, limits to the number of litters, etc. While not every SKG breeder is perfect, you'll generally find someone commmited to the betterment of the breed, and to breeding and homing with ethical standards.

I still say, rescue first...

....but if you do go to a breeder, go to one who is an SKG/FCI member, making sure that he/she is a good one - who knows, loves, and has many years experience of the breed, is committed to the welfare of the breed, and to his/her puppies for their entire lives, and one who works to find the best possible home for his/her dogs.

'Cause hopefully that means fewer dogs will end up in rescue.

Last edited by meloncollie; 15.07.2007 at 18:31.
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Old 15.07.2007, 19:47
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Re: Dog Breeders in Switzerland

While I'm sure you're right my efforts with G only comes up with registered breeders, rescue homes, and just 1 dodgy-looking ad. Most of the ad hoc pups for sale ads appear to be from outside Switzerland.

When I looked for our dog I searched a lot and didn't come across any non-registered breeders in Switzerland - could be border collies aren't so common and so the options were limited but I just don't see a widespread issue. I did come across a rescue home where 5 out of their 7 dogs were abandoned by expats leaving the country .
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Old 15.07.2007, 22:01
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Re: Dog Breeders in Switzerland

Well, while you two sort out your differences!! I thank you for your advice you have given me some good places to start!!

I know there are lots of rescue dogs out there that need a loving home - I have actually done voluntary work in an animal rescue centre here in Switzerland so I do realise the help they need. I will look at all possibilities before I embark on getting another dog, I realise the responsibility and care they need. But thanks again you have given me some great links!

I'll let you know how I get on!!
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Old 16.07.2007, 01:16
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Re: Dog Breeders in Switzerland

i have heard that many swiss people go to Hungary to buy purebred dogs, because its cheaper than getting ones in switzerland. i heard it was very expensive to have puppies and sell them in switzerland with vet and legal restrictions. does anyone know about this?

i own a vizsla (pic on profile) and have been stopped on the street by people wanting to breed their dog with mine. but i am reluctant to do so, as im not a expert breeder. plus afraid to if their is all these laws and vet bills.

also i would have to say, rescuing from a pound is not always the best. its better to find a dog and breed that works best with you.

good luck.
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Old 16.07.2007, 12:31
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Re: Dog Breeders in Switzerland

I am not sure that the phrase "expensive" should really apply. I bought a Bernese puppy just after we moved there from a breeder in the Bernese Oberland and paid 1800CHF. This included his first vaccinations, registrations, a 18Kg bag of food, a first collars and leash and a pet passport.

As a comparison, a pure bred Chiuaua in the UK costs approximately £1800 just for the dog!

I don't feel putoff by paying a suitable price of a dog because it should, hopefully, put off the people who are buying animals on a whim for gifts, etc. We asked thebreeder, where we bought Tom, if she had ever refused to sell to anyone and she told that she had done so to someone who wanted to buy a BMD as a present for his Fiancée.
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Old 17.07.2007, 02:26
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Re: Dog Breeders in Switzerland

Hi
Here ist link of the Kennel Club (SKG)- look under Züchtertafel

http://www.hundeweb.org/hundewebd/index.html

LG Rahel
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Old 17.07.2007, 15:32
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Re: Dog Breeders in Switzerland

Hi,
May I just second Meloncollie's very advice about rescue dogs, and may I just comment about puppy farms. I only wish to share my opinion, and I am happy to receive any criticism or correction. I am only a very dedicated dog person.

Although I do not currently reside in Switzerland, my work in rescue here in Spain will very much mirror that of all rescue situations no matter the country. rescue dogs are given up by their owners for countless illogical reasons, and these dogs are psychologically/emotionally more loyal and show more gratitude to their new adoptive homes than ones who have not suffered this trauma of pack separation (I do not suggest trauma is a good thing).

I have never purchased a pedigree, I have always rescued my dogs. I am not at all against pedigree dogs. I am against unethical breeding. I have rescued the most beautiful and loving rotweiler, and now Belgian Shepherd and a Border Collie. For me, it is not relevant that my dogs are pure-bred. I will tell you why. There are too many unethical "breeders" out there who are crossing the sister with the brother and yes, these people are registerd and licensed. Unless you or the police stand by and witness the mating, there is hardly any way to really guarantee against this type of in breeding without going through expensive DNA tests. I am sure the legislation in Switzerland is strict, so perhaps the incidence of this inbreeding will occur less than in countries who do not have strict laws governing proper breeding. Nonetheless, the issue of inbreeding is global. I am very sure there are plenty of ill-conceived breeders there who may pass off their environment and references as genuine and the real thing.

Moreover, I always advise anyone who is looking for a pedigree dog to read up on the ethics of breeding. Learn about what ethical breeding really means, and then you will know exactly what to look for when you visit the property. It is only with an informed and educated background that you will develop a critical eye. There are tons of guidebooks on ethical breeding if you google it. (It may be difficult to find any "inbreeding" websites advertising inbred pups, so dont be surprised that you do not find any information on who the bad breeders are, and where to find them) I cant stress enough how important it is that you visit the home, and see the parents of the pups. Please never buy any dog without having thoroughly checked this out, and then go back and check again. A good breeder will allow you this type of scrutiny, as this is a serious investment. Also, an ethical breeder is someone who has the proper environment, which is clearly defined in these books. A good breeder will stand behind their service and will never question why you are asking so many questions. A bad breeder on the other hand will do and be exactly the opposite!

As for finding a very good dog, a rescue dog is definitely a fine way to go, they are every bit as wonderful and trainable as any pedigree. I can say that from the personal joy of having only rescue dogs. As we know, behaviour is never about breeds, it is about the people. So from a behavioural point of view, there is no difference between a good pedigree and a rescue dog

From a health point of view, they say a rescue dog is often healthier as the cross of breeds seems to have a positive long term effect.

From a functional point of view, there is clearly a purpose in pedigrees. If you are specifically looking for a dog to herd sheep, then you would want a border collie. If you want a dog to pull your sleigh in the snow, then a Husky is a great option, and so on.

But if you want a companion most of all, there is clearly no difference whatsoever between pedigrees and non-pedigrees. The only real point then is the obvious one, that this world has too many dogs and not enough homes. Too many dogs are put down that could have been rescued. Its from this point of view that only the best licensed, educated, certified, ethical breeders should be allowed to create more dogs. If I were to buy a pedigree, only the best would do. I would never want to pay less to an unethical breeder, and contribute to the problem.

Best wishes in your decision.
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Old 17.07.2007, 16:06
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Re: Dog Breeders in Switzerland

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Hi,
Although I do not currently reside in Switzerland, my work in rescue here in Spain will very much mirror that of all rescue situations no matter the country.
I think you've highlighted a point I was (poorly) trying to get across. In Spain I've seen stray dogs roaming around in twos and threes, emaciated, uncared for, abandoned. Same goes for parts of Italy. I've seen the same but more rarely in France and the UK. But I haven't seen any in Switzerland yet (5 years and counting).

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...... and these dogs are psychologically/emotionally more loyal and show more gratitude to their new adoptive homes than ones who have not suffered this trauma of pack separation (I do not suggest trauma is a good thing).
Seen any research that supports this? I think it's a case of anthropolymorphism (I love that word ). As for 'pack' separation, don't get me started. Domestic dogs are not pack animals (await flaming for that one but I have the research to back up that statement). The most you'll see naturally is 2's and 3's hanging out together. They exhibit some of the traits of pack animals but by no means all.

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But if you want a companion most of all, there is clearly no difference whatsoever between pedigrees and non-pedigrees. The only real point then is the obvious one, that this world has too many dogs and not enough homes.
Absolutely and I'm not disagreeing with anything you say about inbreeding either. Mongrels are typically healthier and longer living than 'pedigree' breeds.
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Old 17.07.2007, 20:56
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Re: Dog Breeders in Switzerland

"Domestic dogs are not pack animals (await flaming for that one but I have the research to back up that statement). The most you'll see naturally is 2's and 3's hanging out together. They exhibit some of the traits of pack animals but by no means all"

Hi Swissbob,

Thank you for the reply. I sincerely am enthused to provide and share this research showing the emotional abilities of dogs. It begins with this book: Coren, Stanley(2004) How Dogs Think: Understanding the Canine Mind, Free Press, USA. The ISBN number is: 0743222326 or you can visit his webpage at www.stanleycoren.com He is a very well respected psychologist devoted to dogs. He is a major contributor to the general thinktank on animal behaviour. I have heard from people who have adopted dogs from shelters say to me later that the dog is entirely different from the one they had since a pup (nothing to do with pedigrees). They are making a comparison between the non-shelter dog they already had, and the second dog that came from a shelter. Of course, there is no objectively quantifiable hard scientific evidence regarding this, it is only anecdotal. But behaviour cannot be objectively scrutinized the same way physics or math can be scrutinized, but that is a philosophical debate.

The other research that I drew upon when I made that generality about rescue dogs being more grateful comes from my interpretation of this research: LeDoux, Joseph (2000), Emotional Circuits in the Brain, Centre for Natural Science, NY University, NY, NY. It was published in the Annual Review of Neuroscience, (2000) Vol. 23: 155-184,
ledoux@cns.nyu.edu It was a focus on how animal' brains support the ability for emotions, much the way the brain supports the neurophysiology of fear.

Really, I am happy to share these bits of information about dogs for anyone to read, it is incredibly interesting stuff, if you are into that sort of thing.

Sorry I dont know how to highlight your quote the way you highlighted mine! In reference to what you had posted, I was taught dogs were direct descendants of the wolf, at least that is what my canine communications course taught me. Furthermore, the breed (which is man's manipulaton of the wolf) is only what the dog's skill represents, but behaviourally, cognitively, intelligently, they are wolves, which live in pack societies. I would genuinely be interested in the research that shows how domestic dogs are not pack animals. There is no one single authority on any of this, so I really would be interested to read another point of view. I am very open to learning, as other points of view may be valid also. I have definitely seen packs of dogs out in Spain, of about 10 or so, but that tells you how bad animal welfare is here! They are not emaciated because all the people leave tons of food out for them so they do not starve to death. However their state of health is another story altogether. They certainly looked like a pack of wolves to me, roaming the streets, foraging for food, never fighting. They were territorial against my Rottweiler when we would walk by, but I didnt see this as aggressive, just territorial (they never touched her, though!).

Kind regards
CC
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Old 17.07.2007, 23:14
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Re: Dog Breeders in Switzerland

Hi Caninecounselor,

as you might have guessed - I am into that sort of thing . I have read some stuff by Coren and have issues with the analysis, measurements, and conclusions that we would need a beer or two to discuss properly.

Have you read "A new understanding of canine origin, behaviour, and evolution" by sled dog champions Raymond and Lorna Coppinger ISBN 0-226-11563-1. This is one of the best books on dogs ever written (IMO) and explains so much of what I observe on a daily basis. If not, I think you will love it even if you don't agree with the hypotheses presented in the text. One thing, she has bc's competely sussed .

For me, it clearly shows how dogs and wolves may have had the same common ancestor much like us and apes, but that they split in a similar way and now have little to do with each other. There is no physiological evidence that domestic dogs descended from wolves.

Fact: Wolves are way more intelligent than dogs - did domesticating them make them less intelligent?

Fact - dogs do not naturally form a pack with a hierarchal social structure, engaging in hunting and other mutally benefical activities, they are more a gang of scavengers with a much more basic social structure.

It's a great read .
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Old 18.07.2007, 01:33
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Re: Dog Breeders in Switzerland

Blimey.....!
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Old 18.07.2007, 02:25
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Re: Dog Breeders in Switzerland

Anyway, thank you I really appreciate all your comments and advice!

I've had word back from my landlady and she says I need a 'Hundhaltebewilligung' in order to have a dog in our apartment. What exactly is this? Usually, when she says we need something or other it costs us a few hundred francs!!

Cheers!
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Old 18.07.2007, 08:48
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Re: Dog Breeders in Switzerland

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Anyway, thank you I really appreciate all your comments and advice!

I've had word back from my landlady and she says I need a 'Hundhaltebewilligung' in order to have a dog in our apartment. What exactly is this? Usually, when she says we need something or other it costs us a few hundred francs!!

Cheers!
Essentially a dog license. Price is different per canton, maybe even per town. Ours is 70 CHFs a year I think. Some cantons provide a disc for the dog to wear showing they are licensed. Increasingly, the microchips are being registered instead.
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Old 18.07.2007, 09:26
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Re: Dog Breeders in Switzerland

Thank you SwissBob, now all I have to do is convince is my husband!
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Old 18.07.2007, 14:35
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Re: Dog Breeders in Switzerland

Hi Swissbob,

Would love to meet and discuss this over a beer! (or two!) but it will have to wait until the next time I travel there. I would genuinely love to chat about your views on Dr. Coren's methods of measurement, etc. I must read this book again. No doubt you are right, there are always areas to criticise when it comes to measuring behaviour objectively. I feel it is our obligation to challenge and criticize all we are "told" (IMO) which can only lead to new and clearer understanding (reasons for war, for example).

I have read that the GSD is the first real wolf descendant, but that doesnt make sense. I totally agree that wolves are far superior than dogs in intelligence, and I have also thought man's breeding has reduced this intelligence. Did they lose intelligence because mane changed their environment too much? (no need to hunt, no threat from predators) Is it a question of polyanthromorphism? . (I must understand this word!) But is it also possible that domestication made the wolf/dog more able to detect our energy states, including our physiologial imbalances, such as cancer?

I think it is a very complex subject, and is in many ways a specialised type of research because there just doesnt seem to be any real concensus yet. I love this forum because there are so many positive and interesting people to chat with (unlike so many others out there), who make great contributions to every topic. I have learned a lot about Switzerland just from reading all the forums, its been very worthwhile.

I am very thankful to you for the wonderful book reference, especially since she has sussed out the border collies, cause I need some sussing!! My bc is such a lunatic, no wait, a complete muffin, no hold on she is a very maniuplative teenager, no.....I have rescued her only 4 months ago, and she was already 18 months or so. She completely stole my heart!

I hope to be able to live there soon, I am afraid to move there because I do not want to put by Belgian Shep (talk about wolf look-a -like) at risk of failing this test and surrenduring him to be euthenised. I have completely put the entire move to Lucerne on hold, until I can be certain he will be okay, no matter how long this takes. This has created a big problem for us as a family as my partner has a business there.

Sorry, this was meant to discuss pedigrees, breeding, and canton laws....


Best wishes
CC
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Old 18.07.2007, 15:53
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Re: Dog Breeders in Switzerland

ok, CC. Agreed - thread hijack over (although a lot of relavence to breed choice) . I'll pm you .
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Old 20.07.2007, 13:19
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Re: Dog Breeders in Switzerland

Does any one know of good weimaraner breeders in the French-speaking part of Switzerland and the pros and cons of these dogs? I have my heart set on one and have hopefully found a good one just over the border in France who comes recommended but it would be good to have another one as back-up incase his bitch does not fall pregnant. I gather these dogs might not be bred at all in Switzerland but if anyone has any information that would be helpful. thanks.
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