Breeding dogs; have you ever considered breeding your dog? There are many reasons I hear why people want to breed their dogs;
- We love her so much we want a puppy from her.
- I want my kids to see puppies being born and raised.
- We could use the extra money.
- My neighbor wants a puppy from her.
Any of these sound like things you've considered yourself? Well there are other things to consider before breeding your dog.
- Are you willing to do all the necessary health tests? (Hips, elbows, eyes, skin disorders etc?) These are essential to producing the best physically healthy puppies you can for people.
- Have you studied your dogs pedigree; do they have a strong and healthy lineage? A dog can be healthy but if they have bad genes these can be passed onto puppies.
- When searching for a stud dog you must find a dog who has been tested as well.
- What about temperament? Is your dogs temperament stellar? Is the stud dog's temperament stellar? A good percentage of temperament is genetic, unless your dog has an amazing temperament you may be passing on problems to the puppies.
- Are you financially equipped to handle huge medical bills should something go wrong? Puppies may need to have medical treatment, the Mother may need a c-section etc.
- Veterinarian visits are essential; prenatal, postnatal, during and puppy visits. Can you afford these?
- Are you willing to risk the life of your dog for the sake of having puppies? Things can go wrong and dogs can die while giving birth.
- Are you up for screening possible puppy buyers with a fine tooth comb and potentially turn people down?
- Are you prepared emotionally to hand over your puppies to new owners? It's pretty heavy.
- If things simply don't work out with new puppies and owners are you ready to accept puppies back into your home and re-home them?
- Are you planning on having the litter in your home? Perhaps in the middle of your living room where they can be subject to daily life?
- Puppies need mental stimulation right from the start; they need constant socializing, this takes time. Do you have the time to do this?
- Are you going to temperament test each puppy to best match it with a future guardian?
- Nutrition is a big part of raising a litter; cost should not factor in when choosing foods.
- What if you cannot sell all the puppies? This is a common occurance; especially in these economic times. Can you keep a houseful of puppies?
I could go on and on with this list.
Oh yes this is a long and daunting list; but if you are not prepared to do all of this and more don't even let the idea of breeding cross your mind. I know many many dog breeders and if done right; breeding does not make you money. You are lucky to break even as things always arise that put big demands on your wallet. Breeding is not for the faint of heart; things go wrong all the time and you must be strong enough to deal with all of the issues that arise head on.
There are far too many unwanted dogs in this world already; this list is a tiny look at things to consider about breeding dogs. If everyone checked off at least these before breeding we would have a lot less people breeding dogs; which is a good thing. Spay and neuter your dogs please.