Puppy selection drama

Discussion in 'Teacher Time Out' started by Sarah5483, Jun 1, 2009.

  1. Sarah5483

    Sarah5483 Companion

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    So I posted in another thread that I'm finally picking up my brand new puppy this weekend... however, this is something weird and I'm not sure how to handle it. When we put down our deposit for this puppy, the breeder told us we were third pick for female. There were six females in all. A few weeks later, we emailed asking about the selection process, and he said that the first pick was going to a family in Florida who would probably select theirs simply based on pictures, so he would only have to make arrangements for the second pick to get there before us, agreeing still that we were third pick. Then, another month passes, and it's coming up on the weekend that we get to choose our puppy, so we email the breeder to check up on the process. He tells us that he needs to check with the second and third picks and he will get back to us about our pick up time.... but, we are supposed to be the third pick? We thought there must've been confusion so we brought it up to him. His response was along the lines of, "Oops, I forgot to tell you but, one of the families who put down a deposit before you wanted a male, but there weren't enough males born in this litter so they are getting a female and they get to choose before you."
    Seriously?? So, we just went from third pick to fourth pick, of six in all. I have had my heart set on one puppy since the beginning. However, I had two back ups in case she got picked, knowing that I'd be guaranteed one of my three choices (I do realize that when I get there, the pictures won't do justice and hopefully I will fall in love with one by personality, but still...). Now, because we got bumped back at the last minute, there is a chance I will get none of my three (actually, the FL people already selected one of my three choices, so I'm already down to two of my original choices with two people still ahead of me).
    Also, one of the puppies requires an additional surgery and will have to be spayed so she doesn't pass on her disease, so I'm SURE no one ahead of me will pick her either, which increases the chances of my first choice getting selected by someone else.
    I am trying very hard to think that whatever puppy I'm meant to have, I'll get, but it is still difficult for me to swallow how this came about. Is this guy being honest with me? Would you do anything about it or just be happy you're getting a puppy, no matter what puppy it is?
     
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  3. JustMe

    JustMe Virtuoso

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    As long as you have emails as documentation that you were third pick before paying the deposit, I feel you are very much in the right to back out of this if you choose. I watch a lot of The People's Court. ;) That said, you're likely to fall in love with any of the puppies!
     
  4. smalltowngal

    smalltowngal Multitudinous

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    Wow, I'm sorry. I would have thought that since you wanted a female in the beginning, they would have kept you at third pick and moved the ones who wanted a male behind you. Of course, I've never dealt with professional breeders before with deposits.
     
  5. Caesar753

    Caesar753 Multitudinous

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    I think it sounds shady and I think you should back out of it.

    Take the money you were going to spend (several hundred, yes?), buy all sorts of fun puppy stuff (leashes, crates, toys, treats, food, bowls, trips to the vet, etc.), and go get a $50 dog from the shelter. Shelter dogs will love you every bit as much as fancy breeder puppies, plus you're literally saving their lives. Shelters always have puppies, too, if you're set on getting a little one.
     
  6. Mrs. Q

    Mrs. Q Cohort

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    I agree with Cassie - this sounds like you might be on the losing end of this deal. I would take your money and look for different options. And yes, I absolutely support the shelter idea. After reading about breeders and watching SPCA shows, I will always adopt a shelter dog. :0) Just a thought! Whether you want a shelter dog or not, I would consider if you're going to get cheated in this particular deal.
     
  7. ku_alum

    ku_alum Aficionado

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    I agree with Cassie and Mrs. Q.

    If you are set on a particular breed, check into rescue groups for those breeds.
     
  8. Ms. I

    Ms. I Maven

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    You still should have been 3rd & the other people should be AFTER you. I'm so glad I didn't have trouble like this w/ my breeder. There were only 2 puppies available & the other people wanted a female & I wanted a male, which is exactly the 2 that were available. I didn't get to choose from a bunch, but I was never upset by it. It was meant for my dog & I to belong to each other! :wub:

    I don't know if you still want to go through w/ going though them or not or not, but it's up to you. People have their reasons for not wanting a shelter or rescue & that's perfectly their perogative.
     
  9. ku_alum

    ku_alum Aficionado

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    Ms. I,

    PLEASE don't take this as an attack, it comes from a place of curiousity, not a place of "I'm right, you're wrong."

    What are some potential reasons people don't want to adopt a shelter dog or a rescue dog? I can come up with these: they want to know a dog's history, they value a pedigree, they plan to breed the dog.
     
  10. Aliceacc

    Aliceacc Multitudinous

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    We actually went to the shelter, twice, before buying a dog elsewhere.

    When we went, they had no puppies, and we most definitely wanted a puppy. And I wanted to know the breed and the history of the dog we ended up with.

    I have 3 kids. I know that any animal is unpredictable. But I wanted to do everything possible to ensure that my kids would be safe. My concern with a shelter dog is that there could be some gesture or action that would trigger the dog to behave in a way that would hurt my kids.

    I would be more than happy with a mutt puppy, as long as someone could tell me that the breeds involved were kid-friendly.
     
  11. ku_alum

    ku_alum Aficionado

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    Thanks, Aliceacc. :)
     
  12. Kindergarten31

    Kindergarten31 Cohort

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    Were the deposits made before the litter was born? If so, how could the breeder promise anyone either sex when no one knew the amount of either sex? And if the deposits were after the litter, how come the people who wanted a male didn't get one?
     
  13. Ms. I

    Ms. I Maven

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    Oh no, I don't take it as an attack, but thanks for your gentle words! :)

    Don't get me wrong, I've had dogs in the past & I didn't get any of them from breeders before. I've visited shelters & I know there's so many that need homes, etc. & those little faces just go straight to your heart. I know not to get pets from newspaper ads & pet stores.

    I personally wanted a very specific (& unique-looking) breed, plus I wanted a puppy from the beginning to raise from day 1. (I never intended to breed myself or even put mine in shows).

    Here's some reasons why people may NOT want dogs from shelters/rescue grps. Now everyone doesn't have to agree w/ these reasons, but again, everyone has the right to do what they want. Also, I'm not implying that purebreeds from breeders that cost $1000+ are any better than mutts in any way.

    - Just the pleasure of having a dog from puppyhood to old age to raise solely for their entire lives. (Some people can't take only having a dog for a short time & dealing w/ a pet's death too often after they've gotten attacehd to them).

    - Wanting a purebreed (& I realize that there's purebreeds on occasion at shelters & definitely at breed specific rescues).

    - Wanting a very specific or rare breed

    - Not having to worry about undoing bad or aggressive behaviors. Some people may just prefer to raise a dog their way from day 1 including the foods they want them to eat.

    Have you asked Sarah5483, the OP, why she wants a dog from the breeder?
     
  14. chemteach55

    chemteach55 Connoisseur

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    I am with you ku_alum--I can not understand paying thousands of dollars for an animal when there are so many that get euthanized daily in pet shelters waiting for a home. I have had experience with purebred animals from breeders and mutts from the shelter because my parents will only have purebred dogs and all of the animals that we have had were unwanted in some way. Four of the 5 aminals that my husband and I have had were tiny puppies or kittens at the time that we got them. We have only had 1 that was an adult. The adult was an older German Shepard who was old when we got him and the owner actually paid us to take him because he could not keep him and knew he was too old to be adoptable in a shelter. We took him and had a wonderful 2 1/2 years with him until he died. We have never had an agressive animal.
     
  15. rachaelski

    rachaelski Habitué

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    Mixed breeds are less likely to pass on diseases or ailments. For example, golden retrievers are known for their hip dysplasia (breed defect multiplied by overbreeding). Get a mixed breed significantly less likely to happen.

    I firmly believe that dog temperament is nurture over nature. My dog is a boxer/pit bull mix and he is the sweetest and most gentle dog you have ever met! He loves children and plays with my cats. He literally lays dog to make sure he doesn't overwhelm them.
     
  16. chemteach55

    chemteach55 Connoisseur

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    This is very true. My mom had a schnauzer that was so overbred that he had horrible skin problems. The vet said that they see it a lot in schnauzers with many champions in their line.

    I had a shepard/chow mix and she was the sweetest, most gentle dog you would ever want. She had been dropped off at the ballpark and was actually so young when we got her that we bottle fed her.
     
  17. ku_alum

    ku_alum Aficionado

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    Have you asked Sarah5483, the OP, why she wants a dog from the breeder?

    No, Ms. I, I did not. I did recommend to her to check shelters and rescues. Your response to her included a comment that not everyone sees shelters/rescues as an option, that is why I directed my question towards you.

    Dog lovers are dog lovers are dog lovers. :)

    Chem - bottlefeeding an abandoned puppy, how heart-breaking.
     
  18. chemteach55

    chemteach55 Connoisseur

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    She ended up having a very good life--she was with us for 11 years. There were 3 left that day. We kept all 3 until we were able to wean them from the bottle. I was a stay at home mom at the time so we took them and bottle fed them every 2 hours. My son was a baby at the time and I would have him in one arm and a puppy in the other each drinking from a bottle and each of my daughters would be giving the other puppies a bottle.
     
  19. JustMe

    JustMe Virtuoso

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    Okay, hear me out...

    Some people feel very strongly that one should adopt a shelter puppy or dog before one from a breeder because the ones at the shelter are so much more likely to go unadopted and in some cases killed. But, please allow me to compare this to human babies. :) Should women not have their own biological children and instead adopt children in need of a home? After all, those children needing to be adopted will likely travel from foster home to foster home or live in an orphanage. Instead of adding to the human population, perhaps everyone should focus on taking care of the babies alive and in need already.

    It may seem absurd to treat the two situations the same, but I don't think it's all that different. And please let me say that I grew up on a dairy and never had to worry about picking a puppy--they are dropped off for us! People feel better about abandoning their pets on a farm, like all farmers need is another mouth to feed. Of course, we did keep them all. I've had so many mutts that I can't possible recall them all in great detail. And goodness how I loved them!

    My point is, it's all about personal choices. There are reasons for adopting a pure bred from a breeder and reasons for adopting from a shelter. Just as there are reasons to have your own child and reasons to adopt. I would like to see the population of needy animals (and children) decline significantly before adding to the population, but...well, I guess I'll shut up now. :)
     
  20. MissWull

    MissWull Cohort

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    I agree with whoever said you should have still been #3 and the other people should have just been put behind you. I'm not necessarily sure they're completely shady, but if you go there and do not see one you like, I'd ask for my deposit back and say that you chose 3 potential pups, but since you were placed #4 (after they said you were #3), your choices are no longer there. Then go to another breeder.

    But with that said, I think personality is more important than looks. When you finally go there you may just find the one you want isn't there...but come across a really friendly and spunky one that you connect with right away! I hope that happens!

    Did you check refs on the breeder?


    On a sidenote with the shelter/breeder talk: I love animals and do not like the fact that shelters are so overrun with un-wanted animals. But, I have owned 3 animals all from breeders. I wanted a puppy, I wanted to know they came from good genes, I wanted to be able to train them and raise them in a good way, and I also wanted a specific breed. For all of those reasons, I did not go to a shelter.
     
  21. Ms. I

    Ms. I Maven

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    JustMe and MissWull, I agree w/ what you both said. And BTW, that was me who said that the OP should have stayed #3 & the rest are after her in line. :)

    ku alum, I agree, it's just nice that so many people are dog/animal lovers. There's a pet expo that goes on annually in a county away from me & it's so crowded w/ people every single year. We humans do love our animals!
     
  22. Caesar753

    Caesar753 Multitudinous

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    Shelters always have puppies. I'm just sayin'.

    We got one of ours from a shelter when she was 9 weeks old. We raised her and trained her from the get-go. She's wonderful and fantastic, and I know that she's not any worse than some breeder puppy with "good genes".
     
  23. chemteach55

    chemteach55 Connoisseur

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    If people would just spay or neuter their pets then there would be a lot less in the shelters and running around with no place to live. Unfortunately I think with the economic crisis, we are going to see more adult animals in shelters because their owners could not afford to keep them.
     
  24. Caesar753

    Caesar753 Multitudinous

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    You bring up a good point. There was a story in the news the other day about people who are keeping their pets in spite of feeling the effects of the bad economy. Evidently many are avoiding getting their pets spayed or neutered because it costs too much.

    The shelters are just going to keep getting fuller and fuller.
     
  25. MissWull

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    Well to be honest, "good genes" matter to me because I like to make purchases being comfortable with them. I do my fair share of research on several high price/high use items I purchase. Dogs are a very important part in a persons life and to me that is no different than researching an item in order to try to get the best. I am going to research a breeder and see what genetic problems I may have to deal with. Why put my husband and I in a predicament if we get a dog from a shelter and end up having to spends hundreds or thousands on a possible disorder that I could have avoided if possibly buying from a breeder. I'm not saying that there is a 100% health guarantee from a breeder (that does not exist), but there is definitely less chance of running into that type of situation if you know the genes/bloodlines/history. If I want the joys of owning a dog, and buying from a breeder is more realistic for ME than that's what I'll do.

    If other's want to go to a shelter, that's their prerogative. I agree with both sides.
     
  26. Sarah5483

    Sarah5483 Companion

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    Thank you for saying that! That has been one of my many points as I try to justify myself to friends and family. I am an avid animal lover, people have teased me about it all my life, because it's just who I am. Now they are really giving me grief about getting a purebred and not going to a shelter. But, I have about two years before my husband and I are planning to have children (we'll both be completely done with our master's, and if we can help it, we're waiting until then :)), so it seems like the perfect time for me to have a brand new puppy. I grew up with a dog we adopted at two years old from a family who could no longer have her, she was a purebred English Lab, best dog I've ever known... then in college I adopted from a shelter a Weimaraner who was also older, loved her tremendously, too. I have never had a puppy and now is probably the only time in my life, for a long time, that I will just be able to fully enjoy a puppy (almost all to myself, as I am off for the summer and my husband works) and take the time that is needed to really work with her.
    I know I could get a wonderful dog at a shelter, and I will, for my second dog. I can't explain why I just want this purebred German Shorthaired Pointer puppy over another dog. I have felt very selfish and guilty for not going to the animal shelters, but it really doesn't seem much different than why you want to have your own children verses adopting (although I am planning to adopt after I have a child or two of my own).
    As far as the breeder goes, things have calmed down quite a bit. I do not think he is being shady as I first though, now that we have addressed the issue with him and sort of put him in his place. He has been very accommodating and seems genuinely sorry for his mistake. He has not agreed to put me back in third pick, but he has gone out of his way to make several other accommodations.
    Regardless, I have become very attached to these puppies, as the breeder has sent us pictures about every three days since they were a week old, and I am going to go try to pick one out this weekend. If I decide I don't want one, he will refund my deposit and I will go find one at the local shelter.
     
  27. Sarah5483

    Sarah5483 Companion

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    And that has been another argument of mine... when people say, "Why spend this much on a dog when you can spend $50 at the shelter???" Yes, I am spending $600 on this dog (well, less now that the breeder has bumped me), but quite frankly, that is nothing compared to the costs of vet bills and I am hoping that I will not have to take many "extra" trips to the vet, as this litter has come from excellent bloodlines. A shelter dog, you usually have no idea what the history is there. I too agree with both sides, though.
     
  28. Caesar753

    Caesar753 Multitudinous

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    I respect your decision to purchase a dog through a breeder. I just think that it's unfair to say that shelter pups are any less good or healthy than breeder dogs. I just don't think that's true. Breeder dogs, especially purebreds, are very often inbred to the extreme. Purebreds are much more likely to have genetic disorders for that very reason. Mutts are much less likely to have genetic disorders because the gene pool is more diverse.

    I also think it's unfair to suggest that people who get breeder dogs are more concerned about their dog because they take more care to research the dog's past. For starters, many people (not saying you) purchase from breeders without knowing exactly under what conditions the dogs are bred. Very often, too often, breeder dogs appear to come from regular, good breeders but actually have been transplanted from puppy mills. Second, I certainly didn't get my shelter dogs on some whim and without concern for either their health and well being or their ability to fit in with my family. Just knowing who a dog's parents are is not enough to tell you whether that dog is a good fit.

    I understand and respect the desire to get a special dog of a particular breed. I personally love German Shepherds because those are what we had when I was little. I won't say that I wouldn't get one if the opportunity presented itself. However, I think it's off the mark to suggest that shelter dogs aren't as good. I find that pretty offensive and sad, actually. They really are as good as breeder dogs, and if you ask me sometimes they're even better because they know how close they came to their great nap.

    Spending $1,500 for a dog doesn't make that dog any more special than the one with sad eyes and fleas at the shelter. The only difference, aside from being able to say that this one is purebred and this other one, well, we don't know what it is, is that the breeder dog will find a home, and the shelter dog probably won't.
     
  29. Ms. I

    Ms. I Maven

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    All this talk reminds me of something that happened before I got my dog. When I was still narrowing down & researching the breeds I was possibly going to get, I was at an upscale outdoor mall in a city I like to visit every several mos (Newport Beach, CA).
    My BF & I were browsing a bookstore & outside the window, I saw a man walking a French Bulldog, which you see very rarely in day-to-day life, if at all. Also, they're a very expensive breed mostly because the pups have to be born by c-section due to the breed's large-sized heads that cannot fit through the female's birth canal.

    My BF & I ran out of that bookstore to catch up w/ the man because that was a breed I was interested in. We asked him where he got his & he said Hungary (as in the country). I personally wasn't surprised because I know breeds are shipped from other countries to people who really want them & Frenchies sometimes come from that country.

    I love Frenchies, but I wouldn't go so far as to have one shipped from another country, probably not even another state.

    I was so glad when I saw that my breeder lived a 40 min drive away (1-way).

    My mom, 2 aunts & I drove an hour to get my aunt's Bichon Frise puppy that I helped her find.
     
  30. silverspoon65

    silverspoon65 Enthusiast

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    Wouldn't a more accurate comparison be a woman adopting a child from foster care, or picking out parents to create a "perfect" child with good temperament and genes? Unless someone on here can give birth to their own dog, I don't think this is an accurate comparison at all. (and if you can give birth to a dog, PLEASE let me know... I want pictures.)

    I think it was mentioned in this thread before, but pure bred dogs are FAR more likely to carry health problems. Those "good genes" are from generations of inbreeding. So what you are saying about there being "less of a chance of running into that type of situation" is totally wrong. Many breeds carry diseases and problems like stomach turning, hip dysplasia, temperament issues, and many other problems that mutts tend not to have. Plus, you can save sometimes upwards of $1000 when adopting, so you have a nice cushion for any health problems.

    I hope AT LEAST anyone buying a purebred puppy is going to a reputable breeder and touring the facilities before they give the breeder any money. I live near puppy mill central, and I can tell you first hand, some of those puppies are dealing with issues much more horrifying that what is happening at a shelter. I met a girl who adopted a dog, and the dog can't stand or walk now because it's first month were spent in a cage. It never walked on the ground.

    Ok, off soapbox now.
     
  31. chemteach55

    chemteach55 Connoisseur

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    :soapbox:purebred or mutt--all animals deserve someone to love them. I just hate to see animals mistreated either by people allowing their animals to reproduce with no thought of who is going to take care of the babies and then dropping them off at a park or other public place. My VP opens up the school building every morning at 5:30 and last week there was a box with 3 puppies in it at the front door. The were full of fleas and skinny. We brought them to the vet, got shots, and had them defleaed (the school paid all the vet bills) and then 3 students "adopted" them. Personally the dog that cost us the most money was the purebred German Shepard that we adopted as an adult. My mutts all stayed healthy, lived outside all their lives, went to the vet once per year and died from old age. The German Shepard had a hip problem and went monthly to the vet for a shot to reduce swelling and pain for the last year of his life.
     
  32. JustMe

    JustMe Virtuoso

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    I still stand by my comparison especially because I am considering the population aspect of both dogs and humans. I don't think you get my point at all, but that's okay.
     
  33. silverspoon65

    silverspoon65 Enthusiast

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    I get it, I just don't agree that's its similar.
     
  34. ku_alum

    ku_alum Aficionado

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    I'm with you, Silver.
     
  35. JustMe

    JustMe Virtuoso

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    Hmmm...well, okay. It's just that you're making a different point with your comparison than I am making with the one I provided, so thought perhaps we were on different wavelengths. And by the way, I'm so not trying to be negative or argumentative, so don't let me come off that way. :)
     
  36. chemteach55

    chemteach55 Connoisseur

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    :agreed:
     
  37. Sarah5483

    Sarah5483 Companion

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    Honestly, there is nothing wrong with adopting a dog of choice from a breeder, so long as the adopter has done the necessary research. There is also absolutely nothing wrong with going to the shelter to pick out your dog. It seems like people on this thread are feeling like they need to defend the choice for a mutt from the shelter, but there is no one on here who has even insinuated that there is something wrong with that. A poster simply asked the question, "What are some reasons one might go with a purebred from a breeder?" and those of us who have some reasons have tried providing our personal answers. We definitely are not attacking the choice to get a dog from a shelter - I think we are applauding that.
    Also, please give those of us who are going with a breeder the benefit of the doubt that yes, we are doing our research prior to choosing one.
     
  38. mollydoll

    mollydoll Connoisseur

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    Jun 3, 2009

    Yes. This. Please. If you want a specific breed of dog, every state is full of breed specific rescues. In general, though, mixed breed dogs are healthier than pure bred, especially since many breeds are prone to specific ailments (ie Bernese Mountain Dogs, etc). Getting your dog from the shelter is a win-win for everyone, most especially the dog who gets a new chance at life.
     
  39. Sarah5483

    Sarah5483 Companion

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    Jun 3, 2009

    In addition to that, a lot of you are sharing some great success stories about mutts that you've had, which is great. I'd like to share my success stories with the purebreds I've owned. When I was born, my parents had a beautiful golden retriever. He was my best friend. He died when I was in fourth grade of old age (both he and his mom died at 14). It took me a veeeeery long time to get over that. When I was in fifth grade, my dad, who is a horse vet. brought home a 2 year old English Black Lab. She was bred for show, but the woman who owned her got into a car accident and was paralyzed. She turned into the most amazing pet. She was the most loving, sweetest, calmest little lady I've ever known. She was huge, but wouldn't hurt a fly. She eventually became a trained therapy dog and had children reading to her in schools and also visited nursing homes with my aunt. She died when she was 14 (almost 15). Her death was quite similar to how Marley died if you've read that book. No dog will ever compare to her. My most recent dog was actually my boyfriend's dog but she lived with me for a few years in college because my boyfriend's house wouldn't allow pets. My boyfriend had adopted her from a shelter when she was a year old. She was a purebred Weimaraner but was too wild for the family who had her before us and their small children. We have since broken up, but I still see pictures of her on facebook and she is still happy and healthy as a horse at 10 years old.
    So, the argument goes both ways, and quite frankly there shouldn't even be an argument. All types of dogs are great, everyone obviously has their preferences of breeds and no one should be given a hard time about their preference.
     
  40. Sarah5483

    Sarah5483 Companion

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    Jun 3, 2009

    This is truly an honest, genuine question... how are mixed breeds healthier than purebreds if mixed breeds are typically made up of purebreds? You mention Bernese Mtn dogs are prone to a specific ailment, but would a dog that has Bernese Mtn in it be safe from this ailment? I'm sure there is a great explanation, it just doesn't make sense to me.
     
  41. mollydoll

    mollydoll Connoisseur

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    Jun 3, 2009

    The short answer is that most of these things are genetic, so if the dog is getting genes from sources other than only carriers of the "bad" genes, the likelihood is much, much less of the dog developing the problem. I am not a vet, but I worked for one all through high school, and this is what all the vets I know have always said. I believe it is another factor in the recent popularity in dogs like cockapoos, etc.

    With Bernese Mountain Dogs, it is a heart defect. It varies by breed, and obviously not all breeds have these issues, but many do, so it is something to look into when choosing a dog. I have a friend who has always had Bernese Mountains and all 3 of her dogs suddenly died from heart attacks when they were 6-8 yrs old. I understand there has been some progress made among breeders on eliminating this trait, but it would still be a big consideration to me.

    I am not denigrating purebred dogs at all. My childhood companion was an English Springer Spaniel who was the runt of a litter from champion show dogs. He was the most wonderful dog anyone could ever ask for. He was so gentle and patient that he would let our parakeet climb all over him and pick at the hair between his toes. He also made friends with all the rabbits and squirrels in the yard.

    I do, however, firmly believe in saving the lives of dogs who are in shelters and rescues, purebred or otherwise. If I got a dog again (not sure that my parrot would approve), I might choose a purebred puppy, I don't know. I would just get the dog from a rescue. One nice thing about dealing with rescues is that they often are very familiar with the needs and personalities of the dogs they have so they are able to help match people up with the dog they will be most compatible with.
     

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