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Discussion Starter #1
Okay so in a year or two, I know I'm looking at this really early, we're wanting to move into a house from our apartment. We have currently, a 3 year old, almost 4, shih-tzu mix. I've fallen in love with American Eskimo, and I've researched temperament, grooming needs, and health issues (or general lack there-of).

I really want a Toy, but Miniature is fine too, Prince is a smaller dog and he'd love someone around his size.

What's the best way to find a breeder and to vet them? Around my area (western washington), there's basically none, so any dog I get we either spend a few days driving or flying to get. Average prices for puppies I've seen are around 700-1500 depending on websites I've found (lower prices being males), which is why I want to start early for saving (I feel somewhat fortunate I'm looking at a breed that is not as expensive as my mom's Havanese).

My worries is anything long distance can easily be fabricated. If anyone has any good tips, or ways of vetting a breeder, I'd really appreciate it.
 

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Go through breed clubs and associations. Look for ones that keep "blacklists" of breeders doing underhanded things. Ask breeders for references from people who have bought their pups. Find out what titles each parent has, and find out what the titles mean.

If you're open to the idea, you could also go through a rescue. That way you are opting not to support bad breeders, but in a different way. Some really lovely purebred dogs come through rescues. You can search for them on sites like Petfinder.
 

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Go through breed clubs and associations. Look for ones that keep "blacklists" of breeders doing underhanded things. Ask breeders for references from people who have bought their pups. Find out what titles each parent has, and find out what the titles mean.

If you're open to the idea, you could also go through a rescue. That way you are opting not to support bad breeders, but in a different way. Some really lovely purebred dogs come through rescues. You can search for them on sites like Petfinder.
I do love rescues, Prince was a stray himself, but I'm also really wanting a younger dog, preferably a puppy, but okay with "teenage" too. I'm not new to puppies so I know what I'm in for.

Where would I start with breed clubs? I have 0 experience interacting with registered breeders- all our dogs (now and growing up) with the exception of one, were all rescues.
 

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Where would I start with breed clubs? I have 0 experience interacting with registered breeders- all our dogs (now and growing up) with the exception of one, were all rescues.
Most typically have websites where you can contact someone. Do that and see if theyre going to have any shows. You can also look up local dog shows and talk to the people showing them and ask about litters and club memberships, stuff like that.
 

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Most typically have websites where you can contact someone. Do that and see if theyre going to have any shows. You can also look up local dog shows and talk to the people showing them and ask about litters and club memberships, stuff like that.
I'm looking through registered AKC breeders right now (seemed to be a good place to start?). So I should ask for previous buyers and ask them their impressions? Check their upcoming shows to see if they're legit? That sort of thing I'm guessing?
 

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Yes. That's a good place to start. If any breeders don't want to give you numbers/emails of previous buyers that's a red flag. Also inquire about health testing. Not familiar with Eskie health issues but I'm sure you can google them. If they don't provide health tests then that's also a red flag. It's also important they breed the dogs *for* something--conformation, agility, therapy/service dogs, etc. Breeding dogs fr a purpose (esp other than conformation) usually means they care about the dogs' temperament as well as physical health rather than just being cute. You usually also want to see a breeder that asks you lots of questions. If it seems like they don't care that much about you, then that means they don't care much about their dogs and where they go.
 

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Yes. That's a good place to start. If any breeders don't want to give you numbers/emails of previous buyers that's a red flag. Also inquire about health testing. Not familiar with Eskie health issues but I'm sure you can google them. If they don't provide health tests then that's also a red flag. It's also important they breed the dogs *for* something--conformation, agility, therapy/service dogs, etc. Breeding dogs fr a purpose (esp other than conformation) usually means they care about the dogs' temperament as well as physical health rather than just being cute. You usually also want to see a breeder that asks you lots of questions. If it seems like they don't care that much about you, then that means they don't care much about their dogs and where they go.
Very true, I agree totally on the questions bit. It seems to be the biggest health issue is some eye degeneration/eye disease if I understood it right.

I've sent out some emails, so we'll see if any bite back!
 
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