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Questions about kennel cough in a puppy

This is a discussion on Questions about kennel cough in a puppy within the Puppy Help forums, part of the Dog Training and Behavior category; Well - after discussions with my vet, their vet (twice), friends who are vets and the lady that looks after Synnu occasionally (who won't take ...

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Old 07-12-2011, 11:46 AM
  #21
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Well - after discussions with my vet, their vet (twice), friends who are vets and the lady that looks after Synnu occasionally (who won't take in a dog who's had Kennel Cough in the last couple of months) I made the heart breaking decision that I couldn't take on this pup. I just couldn't risk Synnu, my business and my neighbour's and family's dogs (one of which is just 12 weeks old). I told the breeders and they are now saying that they're not going to give my (very substantial) deposit back because it's not their fault.

I don't think the breeders are awful people or unscrupulous but I do feel upset that they're withholding my money. I know it's not their fault - it's just one of those things - but it's not my fault either. Am I being unreasonable wanting my money back in these circumstances? It's not as if I haven't sought professional advice and, trust me, I was DESPERATE for a vet to tell me not to worry and she'd be fine.

This has been a s**t week so far, and it's only Tuesday
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Old 07-12-2011, 12:34 PM
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Did you have some sort of contract with the breeder? The fact that the dog is sick under their care should equal a returned deposit in my opinion.
Sorry you're having to deal with all this Sarah, but perhaps it means there is something better in store.
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Old 07-12-2011, 01:19 PM
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I bitterly regret it, but I didn't sign anything. It also never occurred to me to ask about what happens in the event of the puppy being ill. This may turn out to be a very expensive mistake.
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Old 07-12-2011, 02:56 PM
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Arh Sarah, I'm so sorry you have found yourself in such a rubbish situation but I have to say, I'm certain you have made the right decision.

Your main priority is your family, business and, of course, your other dogs (who will undoubtedly get infected with KC if you introduce Synnu).

Now, the breeders... I suggest you go back to them with the following:

1) You put a deposit down on a healthy puppy. This is not now the case so the goal posts have moved and you will not be getting what you originally agreed to pay for (I know its a living animal but you were still buying her)

2) If (god forbid) the dog died, would they still expect you to take it?

3) You may be happy to fulfil the deal if 1) They prepared to keep the dog until the 3 months "quarantine" period is up 2) They pay for the puppy vaccinations up to this point (as they will have to start again) 3) They agree (by way of a signed contract) to subsidise any vet bills you incur as a result of any long term effects relating to the KC (as your pet insurance will not cover this). This may seem like a lot to ask but you are perfectly within your rights. If they are a reputable breeder then they should appreciate this.

4) If any of your clients paid to come and stay at your B&B and their beloved dog contracted KC you could have a potential claim on your hands. Your reputation would be severely harmed you would be labelled untrustworthy and dishonest and subsequently your business (and lively hood) would suffer. This is not an option.

I know you don't like to think they are being difficult but I would seriously question their integrity. I would also ask if you would be prepared to let me know their name? The fact of the matter is Synnu is likely to have mixed with other puppies they are selling and potential "parents" should know that as I doubt this information will be volunteered by the breeder!

I've been through this Sarah. I don't envy the heartbreaking decision you have been forced to make. We got through it with Loui. Yes its been tough (and very expensive!) but we have come out the other end and now were smiling. He gives us an enormous amount of joy and happiness but I have to question what we would have done if we had of known he had KC before we collected him. I can't answer this but what I will say is that we didn't have any other dogs (neither did any family members) & no business that would be affected so our decision would not have been as difficult as yours.

I've rabbited on again, sorry but really feel for you and quite cheesed off that the breeder is more or less holding you to ransom. They are not being very professional.

Your last resort is threatening Watchdog, or small claims court. It's a matter of principle after you have got over the heartache.

Finally, can I ask where your B&B is? We are always looking for dog friendly places to visit!

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Old 07-12-2011, 03:02 PM
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I'm sorry Sarah.....I know this must be heartbreaking for you.

I know it probably doesn't bring you much comfort but I know most breeders wont return your deposit, especially if they specified it was non-refundable. But I agree with Cali, in that, if the pup became ill, while still under their care, they should either make an exception and return your money or at the very least, a substantial amount of it.

The only other thing I can think of, if you otherwise like this breeder, would be to ask if you can then apply your dep. to a future pup...that is if you are still interested in acquiring a dog from them? Or waiting until this little girl is through the 'danger zone' and has a clean bill of health?

I actually preferred to have my pups come from their breeder when they were around 4 to 5 months old. It's just something that worked for me, I know you do not want to wait that long and I'm not sure your breeder would agree to hold the pup that long, even if you did. Some breeders do and some don't.

When I got Quagmire, he was 5.5 months old and he was still very much a puppy but also very trainable and we bonded instantly. I really don't believe I missed out on much, except soggy bums and 2am potty breaks... I know getting an older puppy isn't for everyone so it's just a thought.

I told her then that I was interest in a red female and asked if she would keep me in mind, although she didn't have them often and when she did - they usually went strickly to a show home but within 7 months she did have a single red female that she was thinking of keeping.....I hounded her from June until October while she was "deciding"...lol and finally convinced her to let me have the little red ball of Naughtiness, now known as Mischief! It was a long wait but I don't regret it and would have waited longer for her because she is just amazing. She finally let me have her when she was 4.5 months old and I just wanted you to know that, anything you think might be lost or missed out on, by getting a pup later, was not an issue, for me anyway.

Not sure I'm explaining myself right...Even at almost 5 months old, she was still able to bond and learn our way of doing things, plus she was a more confident and socialized, happy and healthy pup so we enjoyed her all that much more.

Whatever happens with this breeder or another one in the future, I know you are a great dog owner and I wish you nothing but the best.
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Old 07-12-2011, 03:12 PM
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Just realised, Synnu is your dog, I read it as the puppy you were due to collect! sorry my lengthy post refers to the puppy as Synnu! Apologies!
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Old 07-12-2011, 05:10 PM
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I'm sorry...

I agree with some of the above. You put a deposit down on a healthy puppy. They're breaking their end of it, not you...

And besides, if their dogs were properly vaccinated (I get the impression they aren't), then there would have been less of a chance of this happening. These pups should not have been exposed to kennel cough in any way. A lack of common sense is the only possible way that a breeders dogs should get this, sorry. These pups should have started with vaccines at 8 weeks of age. Maternal antibodies can be disappearing as early as that.

I'd fight like hell to get that deposit back. I also wouldn't accept another pup down the road from them if they try to offer you that.

I'm really sorry :-(
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Old 07-13-2011, 02:12 AM
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NB: this is not legal advice.

You are entitled to your money back.

They agreed to supply you with a healthy puppy at 8(? whatever, I can't be bothered going back to check) weeks of age. They cannot supply what you agreed to pay for. In contract law, it's called a total failure of consideration. Failure of Consideration legal definition of Failure of Consideration. Failure of Consideration synonyms by the Free Online Law Dictionary.

Although they might have been able to retain the deposit if you simply changed your mind, they don't get to keep your money when they are the party in breach of the contract. You are entitled to accept their fundamental breach and terminate the contract.

Put a demand for the return of your deposit in writing. (Put it in terms that makes it clear that they can't supply the dog, rather than saying things like "I'm not going to take the dog now" eg "In view of your inability to deliver a healthy 8-week old pup on X date, as agreed, please return my deposit immediately".

I'm so sorry you aren't getting the little girl, although it is lucky that her illness was diagnosed before you got her and not after. That could have been a whole lot worse for you, Synnu and your business.
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Old 07-14-2011, 12:41 AM
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Thanks for all your support and advice. I've taken advice from the government consumer helpline and they have said pretty much the same as you cornetto. I really don't want the situation to get nasty but I'm not going to just walk away either. They haven't responded to my last email so I'll be writing another today - and then, if I get no response to that, I'll have to move to more formal correspondence.
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Old 07-14-2011, 02:48 PM
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I've just noticed this thread!

I'm so sorry that you've had to make such a heartbreaking decision, although in my opinion it is the right decision. If you're paying a hefty amount for a puppy you don't want to start off with a pup that isn't healthy, plus put Synnu at risk. And I would be paranoid about her developing further problems due to the virus. I'm so sorry And I hope you get your deposit back!!
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