Buying A Puppy

Everything you need to know about bringing a puppy into your life starts here. How to find that Schnauzer puppy, what to look for in a breeder, early care, training and feeding are all covered. We even cover Schnauzer crocodile teeth.
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Please do not discuss breeders or raise issues concerning breeders on the forum. This has created problems in the past and many breeders are not members and unable to defend any claim you may make.
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zeta1454
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Buying A Puppy

Post by zeta1454 » 23 Jun 2013, 13:07

There have been a few posts recently from people searching for a puppy and/or a reputable breeder and some who have found breeders not to be reaching the standards they would expect. This area is a bit of a minefield certainly and, even setting aside the very worst kind of breeding establishment, there are many dog breeders whose sole purpose is financial gain and who should be avoided at all costs by anyone looking for a healthy, well-bred puppy. There is an excellent thread on the Forum What to look For When Buying a Puppy but I thought it was worth adding to this here as it is a couple of years since that was put up.

As someone who has experience both as a puppy buyer and as a breeder I wanted to explain a few points that may help those new to purchasing a pedigree puppy:
Kennel Club (KC) registration for a pedigree dog means that the puppy breeder has paid a fee to the Kennel Club to register the puppy and that both its parents are already Kennel Club registered dogs. You would expect when you purchase your puppy to get the official registration papers which will detail the parents' Kennel Club details and any KC required health tests that have been recorded. Kennel Club registration also ensures that the following have been complied with:
The bitch was not under 1 year old at date of mating nor over 8 years old at time of whelping.*
The bitch was resident at a UK address at the date of whelping.
The bitch has not whelped more than 4 litters and has not needed a caesarean section more than twice.*
The KC will not register puppies where the mating is between father and daughter, mother and son or brother and sister*
The puppies will also be refused registration if there is an endorsement on the papers of either of the parents to say they cannot be used for breeding.
*The only exceptions to these will need veterinary evidence or scientifically proven welfare reasons to support the request to register.
If the puppies are not Kennel Club registered then you cannot be sure that the breeder is not actually using a very young or over-age bitch; has not allowed her bitch to be bred beyond 4 litters; has not mated her with a closely related dog; or that they have not actually imported the puppies from outside the UK or broken a contract with the breeder of either the dam or sire of the puppies in order to breed from them despite an endorsement. The BVA eye testing scheme registers the results against the Kennel Club registration number so I would not expect a non-KC registered schnauzer to have been eye-tested either.
While Kennel Club registration does not ensure that the puppy is a well-bred one from a reputable breeder, it does provide minimal safeguards that some welfare needs have been complied with. If you purchase a puppy without KC registration you have no safeguards at all.

The Assured Breeder Scheme
This scheme which has only recently obtained accreditation is the Kennel Club’s attempt to raise the welfare standards and requirements on breeders who belong to the Scheme and who will now be inspected before being allowed to join (or be inspected within 3 years if already a member). The requirements are much higher than those applicable to standard registration and there is another thread on the Forum relating to those requirements which include lifetime support to puppy buyers, good socialisation of puppies before going to their new homes and mandatory health checks on parents and litters. Membership of the scheme, certainly at the present date, is not a guarantee that a breeder is complying with the requirements but where a breeder is reported to the Kennel Club for non-compliance and found to be at fault by their inspectors, they will be removed from the list and many such have been. What it does do however is provide a puppy buyer with the details they need to look for when seeking out a breeder. As with anything you purchase you need to check out for yourself whether the seller is someone you trust to be fulfilling the requirements you are looking for and not just accept a logo on a website or certificate on the wall. Find out what a breeder should be offering and if they are falling short – go elsewhere. The outline requirements can be seen by clicking this link:
http://www.thekennelclub.org.uk/item/4778" onclick="window.open(this.href);return false;

When buying a schnauzer puppy (most especially a mini schnauzer) you are looking to bring into your life a companion, a playmate, a new member of the family who will want to be part of everything you do and who may be dependent on you for anything up to 16 years – or maybe more – for their health and happiness. You are not buying an object or accessory for your home and yet many people spend more time researching a mobile phone or car they are wanting to buy than they do when looking for a puppy. If you are a new schnauzer owner you need to spend hours, days and more if necessary into researching and finding out as much as you possibly can about the breed and its characteristics, grooming requirements, exercise needs, hereditary health risks etc and you need to put an equal amount of serious research into finding the right breeder.

A good breeder will want to be convinced that you understand the breed and its needs, that you realise the extent of the on-going financial commitment you are making, that you are committed to giving the puppy they have bred the best life possible, with love, companionship and care for their lifetime. They want to know that if you work full-time you can and will make the necessary arrangements to have some form of doggy daycare/dog-sitter available for part of the time you are out of the house. They are highly unlikely to sell you two puppies from the same litter knowing the difficulties this entails for pups and owner. And they are much more likely to take an enquiry seriously if it explains in full who you are and why you want a puppy from them than just a call or e-mail that saying ‘How much are your puppies?’ or ‘Have you got a puppy for sale now’. The best breeders have invested time, money and emotional commitment into breeding the very best, healthy puppies they can and they will offer you a lifetime of support and advice if needed as well as being there to re-home or help with re-homing a dog if by any mischance you can no longer care for it. They will endorse the puppies they sell against being used for breeding or being able to be exported out of the country (without their written permission forwarded to the Kennel Club)to try and protect them against being thoughtlessly bred.

For the right breeder, you will be prepared to wait and for the right breeder you will be prepared to travel just as, from the responsible breeder’s perspective, they will wait for the right puppy buyer and will not sell if they do not feel the person wishing to obtain a puppy from them cannot give that pup the best chance of a happy fulfilled future. In the best cases breeder and puppy buyers remain in contact - sharing pictures and information on how the pup is developing and possibly meeting up at schnauzer events or walks. Buying a puppy should never be like buying an object or accessory - it is an emotional commitment much more than a financial one and should be the beginning of a wonderful new chapter in your life and the puppy's. :)
Dogs are not our whole life, but they make our lives whole. ~Roger Caras

Magic - Silversocks Sharade at Darksprite
Trilby - Darksprite Rosa Bud

dogsbody74
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Re: Buying A Puppy

Post by dogsbody74 » 11 Aug 2013, 09:35

I endorse all you say here absolutely. excellent advice.

Incidentally always consider your life style and whether it suits having a dog. Dogs Can be a big tie and if you plan to be going away a lot on cruises etc who will look after your dog?

I personally do not like any single dog being left alone for too long. I am afraid I never sold a pup to people who were out at work all day. Half a day okay-- but not all day long unless able to get back to see to the dog.

So many dogs Are left all day-- I realise that-- but Hate it. So always need to think very seriously before getting a pup or older dog.

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Eddie
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Re: Buying A Puppy

Post by Eddie » 11 Aug 2013, 10:25

There's some good information there so I've made this thread a "sticky".
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Re: Buying A Puppy

Post by BeeBee » 11 Aug 2013, 11:43

This is great. I'd like to add a tiny bit about what to look out for in order to avoid supporting bad breeding practices, and puppies that are being sold through dealers and are from the puppy farming end of breeding, some are not obvious to the uniniated but there are red flags. I'll spend a bit of time making it succinct and then add here.
Jasmine 13.06.96-13.12.10 loved her more than we thought possible
Renae mini b.01.11.10, gorgeous sister to Susie-Belle & Twinkle-Berry puppy farming survivors showing us what matters in life.
https://www.facebook.com/pages/Susie-Be ... 0289434936
http://www.janettaharvey.com/
@SusieBSchnauzer

dogsbody74
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Re: Buying A Puppy

Post by dogsbody74 » 11 Aug 2013, 13:52

re Bee Bee above. Absolutely.It is a minefield out there. Our local papers are full of pictures of pretty little Puppies==mostly designer dogs-- and I bet your bottom dollar the majority come from puppy farms. Too many people fall for these pretty faces-- but when they go to see the pup more often than not-- there is No Mother and no litter mates. People often fall for pups with sad faces and buy them.

Buyer Beware. Always think of the awful background so many of these pups come from, when the poor mother is kept in hideous conditions-- expected to churn out pups after every season. Their lives are Hell. So heed the above advice and look around the place you visit. Also there are too many pet shops selling live puppies. Do not buy from pet shops. Many of those pups come from abroad-- bred to order for whichever breeds are the flavour of the month. Always go for a private breeder who specialises in one breed--not these multi breed establishments.

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