When selecting a breed, look at the characteristics of the adult, not the puppy.
If you have decided on a particular breed, you must find a good breeder. Directories of studs and breeders are available through various governing bodies like Dogs Victoria and other canine associations. You can Google them or find them through dog magazines. Most breeders are genuine. However, as in any group where money is involved, there are unethical and dishonest individuals.
Most breeders will check you out to ensure you will give their pup a good home and encourage you to visit and observe the puppies or if that is not possible, they will video the pups interacting at various stages of development for you to watch. Some breeders encourage you to choose a puppy straight away, so you can visit regularly and share in the pup’s development. Some people prefer to wait until the pup’s personality is more apparent.
Buying a puppy from on-line breeders can be excellent, but also be dreadful. Many on-line breeders are staffed by informed, conscientious people who are keen to find you a good pet, unfortunately though some are not.
Some people will breed puppies just to supply on-line stores, or will unload unwanted litters on them. These pups are rarely well socialized and frequently have health and parasite problems. Animal shelters, lost dogs homes, or welfare organizations can be a rich source of pets, although usually the dogs available are already mature.
Don’t buy a pup for its looks, if is wary or difficult to approach, or it is smelly and ill groomed or badly nourished. Be aware that some breeds such as Brachycephalic Breeds which include French Bulldogs, Pugs etc are prone to enormous breathing problems which may cost you thousands of dollars to rectify on top of the massive cost of the breeds themselves. So do your homework before purchasing any pup whether pure or crossbreed.
- Insist on viewing the puppies interacting at around 5 weeks and then again at 7 weeks. If you can’t view them at the breeder, insist the breeder videos the pups interacting. If they refuse then walk away.
- View the environment the pup’s are brought up in. Is it clean and tidy.
- Do not purchase a pup under 8 weeks of age and ideally no older than 10 weeks.
- Ensure it has immunisation from Parvovirus; Distemper and Hepatitis.
- What are the breeder’s guarantees and refund policy?
- Don’t get desperate! If the pups have not had the early love and care they need to make them good pets, keep looking.