Questions to Ask

Breeding

  • Are you the person who selected the dogs to breed?
  • How many litters do you have per year?
  • Do you breed other breeds?
  • How long have you been breeding this breed/combo?
  • Do you use a broker?

Health & Genetics

  • What genetic and health testing have you done on the sire and dam?
  • What genetic and health testing have you done on THEIR parents?
  • Which vet do the puppies see?
  • When do the puppies see the vet (at what age)?
  • What is the vaccine history on the dam (most recent parvo/distemper/rabies)?
  • Who administers the first vaccine? You or the vet?
  • Can you provide me with your vet’s contact information and give permission to discuss your past litters with me?
  • Do you do early neurological stimulation?
  • What food and supplements is the dam on during pregnancy?

Behaviour

  • Where are the puppies raised? (barn, shed, yard, home, basement)
  • Who lives in the house?
  • Will the puppies be exposed to different people (ages, genders, races) between 5-8 weeks of age?
  • Do you plan socialisation visits to various urban areas with the puppies in a stroller?
  • Will the puppies be accustomed to harnesses and leashes as well as crates prior to 8 weeks?
    • How do you do that, exactly? 
  • Do you provide an enriched environment?
    • What does that look like?
  • What does your early socialisation plan look like for these puppies?
  • What sort of handling do you do with them and at what age do you start?
  • What is your protocol for potential adopters wanting to visit at 5-6 weeks of age?

History

  • Will you provide me with specific details on the puppy’s parents and their parents?
  • Have you had to stop breeding a specific dog or pair in the past?
    • For what reason?
  • What is the most typical complaint that your adopters have?
  • Have you ever had a puppy returned?
    • Why? 

Process

  • Do you have a health guarantee? 
    • What does that look like? 
  • Do you have a contract?
    • Can I read it before I give my deposit? 
  • Do you fly the puppies to their new homes?
    • Where will you ship them?
    • In cargo or with a person? (Who?)
    • At what age will you ship them?
  • How much is the deposit?
    • What happens if a puppy is not available for me in this litter?
    • In what cases would I get my deposit back?
  • What happens if in X years, I need to re-home this dog? Do you have first rights?
  • How are you working around social distancing (Covid-19)?