What Is A Preservation Breeder?
Here are two articles I've written about how to navigate the process of buying a companion animal from a reputable breeder.
How to determine a quality breeder?
Broadway Dobermans & Poodles.
I would look for a breeder that has CLEAR information on their webpage about what they do with their dogs BESIDES breed them.
Do they have CKC or AKC Championships on their breeding dogs? Good structure and temperament are measured by putting conformation titles on dogs. Breeding to the breed standard is the whole point of breeding well bred dogs. If not..Why not?
Do they have titled dogs in performance sport... agility, obedience, rally, retrieving titles, scent work ect? If not...why not?
Do they belong to any National or Provincial breed clubs? Poodle Club or Canada or Poodle Club of Ontario? If not... why not?
How many litters do they produce a year. Any more then 3 and I would have some serious questions.
Can they provide you with proof of health testing. OFA testing is public on the OFA website. Hips, Elbows, Eyes, Cardiac workups plus up to date blood panel for liver, kidney and thyroid.
Plus all of the genetic testing that should be in place. DNA testing for VwD, NE, Neonatal Encephalopathy, DM (Degenerative myelopathy) plus coat colour DNA. All testing done through a reputable lab like Vetgen.
These are the basics. Beyond that. Do they have a good reputation in the Poodle world with their peer preservation breeders? Do they have clean facilities? Are the dogs even registered?
Saying the puppies are CKC registered really means nothing. It does not make the kennel producing them reputable. The CKC is ONLY a registering body. They do nat guarantee quality or good breeding practices. They do not hold anyone accountable for what they do.... for the most part.
Everything I stated above is what sets a quality preservation breeder apart from a backyard breeders or kennels that are just shade above a backyard breeder.
There is a MASSIVE difference between a purebred dog and a wellbred dog!
Why Buy A Puppy From A Show Breeder
Broadway Dobermans & Standard Poodles
Show breeders are breeding family pets as well as keeping a few puppies to show and move forward with their breeding programs.
When people dismiss show breeders saying. I’m not looking forward a show dog, I only want a pet. My dog is sweet and championships don’t matter, they perhaps are just ignorant of what show breeders are producing. It’s like saying it doesn’t matter if the Contactor building my house is qualified, knows what is up to code or not or has experience in the trade.
The original point of conformation shows (dog shows) across all species. Dogs, cattle, horses. Is to EVALUATE BREEDING STOCK. Structure, movement, soundness, temperament. To make sure that the animals being bred are worthy of breeding. And will have the health, structure and temperament to do the jobs they were bred for.
If you like taking your dog hiking and to run and swim at parks. Then it would be in your best interest to buy a puppy with a correct front assembly. As bad structure can lead to injury and lameness. And it sure doesn’t hurt that puppies placed in pet homes from show breeders will stand out to the uneducated eye as very attractive. Even if one does not know exactly why it appeals. It’s because balance and correct structure are always beautiful to look at.
Buying from a Reputable Breeder who shows their dog’s lines, pedigrees and health tests, belongs to National Breed Clubs, and is involved in the preservation and betterment of the breed to me only makes sense.
These type of reputable breeders call themselves preservation breeders. Breeding dogs to their breed standard, and then offering their stock to be judged against other stock keeps the quality higher. Much higher then someone who has never set foot at a dog show, doesn’t know form, function and structure, and probably has never even read the breed standard set out by the CKC air AKC. Otherwise known as backyard breeders.
If a breeder is not titling in conformation or performance. (Obedience, Agility, Dog Sport or breed specific activities), one has to ask. Why? Why then produce?
How can you be producing quality puppies. Without measuring your breeding dogs to the basic level of the breed standard. If breeders have no use for titles or god forbid health testing. They do fall into the category of backyard breeders. Breeding whatever they may have in their house. Probably without real knowledge of the pedigree behind their dogs and certainly at a much lower level of structure and temperament.
Excellent conformation and temperament are genetic. Knowing the health and longevity behind a pedigree is only stacking the deck in your favour when buying a puppy. It’s not a 100% guarantee. But it sure is a step in the right direction.
Buying a pet quality puppy from an outstanding well bred, fully health tested litter means you would be getting a puppy of the same quality as the show pick puppy in health and pedigree. A breeder chooses their keepers on conformation preferences that would not register to most people looking for a family pet. A pet from this type of a litter would far surpass the best puppy from a backyard breeder.
And a breeder of merit will offer a lifetime of support to you and that puppy. And will take that puppy back at any point during its lifetime.
Health testing. A quality breeder should offer up to date health testing for you to see on paper well before you pick up a puppy. And most of it should already be submitted and posted on the OFA website. OFA.org This is a site that posts health testing that has to be conducted through reputable Vetrinary sources. With each dog’s microchip read and confirmed against registration papers to prevent fraud. And in most cases the health results are submitted to the OFA by the veterinarian directly. Again preventing unscrupulous behaviour.
Breeders who belong to the National Breed Clubs also must adhere to the clubs bilaws and rules. How many times a bitch can be bred, and other ethical stipulations. Belonging also opens themselves up to peer accountability.
National breed clubs are a good place to start when looking for a breeder.
If there are red flags when looking into a puppy, it’s probably because the breeder you are dealing with is not in fact a reputable one.
No health testing or health guarantees
No contract for the puppy sale.
Allowing you breeding rights to the puppy.
House is dirty
They cannot tell you about the age, health and where abouts of the dogs behind the sire and dam of this litter.
Can’t see the dam of the litter.
FYI. Many reputable breeders do not use a sire that they own or that lives at their house. They may. But more often then not people producing puppies who have both the male and female in their house is a red flag.
One of the biggest tell tale signs of a reputable show breeder vs the others is.....
A reputable preservation breeder will not allow you to come into their home and ‘pick which puppy you like’.
If a breeder lets you pick your own puppy. You can be assured this is not a breeder who breeds for show and conformation or performance sport.
A breeder who has spent ages choosing the right combination of dogs to breed, spent a ton of money on championships and health testing on the dam of this litter. Paid a stud fee to another top dog who compliments the dam. Spent 8 weeks raising this litter with time, attention, quality food and stimulation. Grades the puppies for conformation and also temperament tests the litter. They will NOT let a puppy buyer come in and pick whatever they like. Nor do they place puppies on a first come first serve basis.
They hold back what they want to show and keep, and place the pet puppies in the homes that have the best match. Of course they will try and give people the sex and colour they might want. But it doesn’t always work out that way.
I would never place the most dominant and high drive puppy with a senior couple looking for a companion. They would need a nice medium to low energy puppy.
Nor a shy or too laid back puppy with a busy family with kids. They would need a confident middle of the road energy puppy.
After 8 weeks of watching the puppies, the breeder will know best what kind of home each puppy will thrive in.
Buying from a show breeder, you would get all of this often for less money then some backyard breeders are charging for their puppies.
Conversely, if a puppy is $500 you are not buying from a reputable breeder who has done any kind of health testing. As raising a quality litter costs money. And the famous saying, you get what you pay for definitely applies.
If you are looking for a puppy. Go to a dog show and ask around. Look for National Breed Clubs or Chapter Clubs. Contact a breeder who’s website shows that they are CURRENTLY showing their dogs in AKC or CKC. Or performance venues.
FYI. The CKC and AKC breeders lists so not vet people on it. They are just registering bodies. A National or Chapter breed club list will have breeders who have agreed to more then just registering their dogs.
Purebred does not always mean Wellbred.