Q. What health checks have you done
on the dam & what health checks have been done on the sire?
Will you show me the results?
A. Both the dam & sire have OFA (hips, elbows, cardiac), CERF
(eyes) & thyroid testing.
A. You can see the results, I have them right here for the dam
& sire. Since most puppies are sold buy the dam's
breeder/owner, it is OK for them to say- I can have the breeder of
the sire email/fax them to you.
Links: OFA- http://www.offa.org/
, CERF- http://www.vmdb.org/cerf.HTML
, Thyroid- http://ahdc.vet.cornell.edu/docs/Canine_Thyroid_Testing.pdf
Q. Can I breed my dog?
A. While this puppy was bred in the hopes of being a show dog, we
don't feel that's a good fit for this dog, so we will require that
the dog is spayed/neutered.
Q. Will I be able to meet the parents of this puppy & its
A. Absolutely. (The seller should be able to introduce at least
the dam) and any litter mates that haven' already been delivered.
This SHOULD be done at the breeders house (there is no good reason
why a breeder should resist letting you see their property).
If at all possible, the breeder should try to arrange a meet w/
the sire (and preferably their breeder/owner), although the
distances may not be practical for that to happen. *NOTE: Most
puppies are placed by the owner of the dam, so the sire is not
often on site.
Q. Do the parents have any sort of behavior issues?
A. No. If there is an issue, but no bite history, the seller
should disclose what issues they have seen or know about. (If
there is a bite history, it should be disclosed, but the buyer
should look for another puppy.)
A+: No & the dam/sire have both earned their CGCs (Canine Good
Citizen test administered by an AKC Recognized Evaluator)
A+: Any other titles such as CD/CDX (Companion Dog/Excellent),
UD/UDX (Utility Dog/Excellent), DD (Draft Dog), WD (Water Dog), AX
(Agility Excellence) etc.......
Q. Are you a member of the National Breed Club? What about the
A. Yes (in this case the Akita Club of America)
A+: We're also members of our "Local" Kennel Club (i.e. Akita Club
of Tampa Bay or Jacksonville Dog Fanciers Association)
Q. Are the parents both Champions or actively being shown &
winning points towards their Champion title or completed their
A. Yes. The sire already has his Champion title & the dam has
XXX points towards her Champion title.
Q. Why Not? (There really is no good reason for a No answer)
Q. When can I pick up my puppy?
A. They have to be at least 8 weeks old before they can be sold.
(IMO, it is a plus if the seller adds add'l weeks).
Q. Are the dam/sire registered & can/will the puppy be
registered? With what registry?
A. Yes, AKC (American Kennel Club) or CKC (Canadian Kennel Club)
or UKC (United Kennel Club). Outside of the US: FCI
(Fédération Cynologique Internationale) or KC
(Kennel Club UK).
(The list of legitimate registries is accurate & complete for
established confirmation/performance registries. The
non-legitimate list should not be considered complete as
"registries" can be created to try to validate any practice).
Q. Are you available to help me for the life of my dog if I have
any questions or issues? What about the sire's owner (see NOTE)?
A. Yes. And if for any reason you believe you cannot keep the dog,
the Contract you sign requires that the dog be returned to us, at
a minimum the dam's owner.
A+: Using the term "from womb to tomb" (or "the life of the dog")
acknowledges that the breeder understands that the commitment to
taking your dog back for any reason at any time (unexpected
aggression, medical conditions that have become too costly,
unexpected circumstances- no matter the reason, the breeder WILL
A+: A letter of the support from the sire's breeder/owner is
great. *NOTE: Most puppies are placed by the owner of the dam and
they commonly hold the entire responsibility for finding the home
for the puppies. The NPB should at least get contact
information for the sire's owner;
this is especially
important if genetic health issues develop or behavior issues
arise (the sire's owner needs to know so they can address it in
their future breeding).
Q. Do the dam & sire have good temperaments & are they
well behaved around people? What about issues with food
A. As you can see, the dam is well behaved (since you've
already asked to "meet the parents'") & the sire is fine with
people too. "Food Aggression" - It is ok for the breeder to say
the dam/sire has food aggression issues if those issues are ONLY
with other dogs & not people
A+: The dam and/or sire have been Temperament Tested by the ATTS
& received its TT (a PLUS the puppies have been tested using
the Volhard Aptitude Test scoring mostly 3s or 4s & the
form/scores will be supplied to you)
Links: American Temperament Testing Society http://atts.org/
, Volhard Aptitude
Q. Is my puppy going to be house-trained & crate trained when
I pick it up?
Q. Where the puppies born indoors? In a whelping box or whelping
room? Have they had good people socialization & other
A. Yes, we have a whelping box in our bedroom (den, home
office.....). We've made sure the puppies got handled at least an
hour a day (in 5-10 minute segments) & they've been introduced
to a few strangers & unusual noises.
A+: They already know how to "sit" on command.
Educating yourself as a puppy buyer is critical. The following are
some links to help you out:
Are You Ready For a Dog? http://www.dogbreedinfo.com/ready.htm
"Dogs are not to be disposed of like old toasters when they do not
perform as you wish. They are living creatures."
Finding a Responsible Breeder: Myths & Facts http://members.tripod.com/antique_fcr/goodbreeder.html
Animal Planet's Dog Breed Selector http://animal.discovery.com/breed-selector/dog-breeds.html
Dog Breed Info Center® Search http://www.dogbreedinfo.com/search.htm
(finding the right breed for you)
The Dog Place "A Dog's Best Friend is a Responsible Owner" http://www.thedogplace.org/
Acquiring A Dog - What a Rescue Can Tell You http://armac.rescuegroups.org/info/display?PageID=3191
Dog Safety Information for All Ages http://Dog-Safety.net
Woof! The Mag with A Wag! http://woofmag.in/
(Woof! is one of the best dog magazines I've seen in a long time.
It is digital only, but well worth every penny spent on a
Who Killed These Dogs? http://www.dogstardaily.com/blogs/who-killed-these-dogs
A great article about why it is SO VERY IMPORTANT TO RESEARCH BEFORE
YOU BUY YOUR PUPPY!
Buyer Question & Answer Sheet
The Cost of Owning a Dog, a worksheet
for children & families provided by the AKC
Puppy Buyer Etiquette
Irresponsible Dog Owner
This is a letter written by a very
well respected lifetime Rescuer. Before
consider getting your puppy, read this.
If you have any questions, you can email Jen@ENPB.org
© Jen Fone, The ENPB Movement, Dog-Safety.net - Permission is
given to reproduce in whole or in part as long as this © is
included (if you put this on your website, please let me know)