Questions to ask a dog breeder

In order to adopt a healthy purebred puppy that’s right for you, you’ll need to find a reputable, responsible breeder. The following is a list of questions to ask a dog breeder to determine whether they have a responsible breeding program and if you should adopt one of their dogs.

How long have you been dealing with this breed?

Ask how many litters they’ve bred and if they’re a member any clubs or organizations associated with the breed. Keep in mind that the length of time a breeder has been breeding dogs may not be the best indicator of how well they do things. Some first-time breeders can be extremely knowledgeable and more than capable of choosing a puppy that’s a good match for you.

Are you involved with other dog breeds besides this one?

A good breeder will usually only be involved with one or two different breeds, sometimes three. If you find a dog breeder dealing with more than three breeds, consider whether they’re truly dedicated to raising quality dogs.

What are your goals in breeding this litter?

If the breeder wants competition and show dogs or has a particular purpose in mind, like breeding working dogs, they’ve probably planned this litter thoroughly and taken the necessary steps to ensure the puppies are healthy and well socialized.

What are the bloodlines of the parents? Why were they selected?

The breeder should know the pedigree of their puppies by heart and have information about their ancestors. A good litter is the result of careful planning and research by the breeder to ensure the best traits of the breed are passed on to the puppies. If a breeder knows little more than a few dogs’ names, it may be an indication of poor planning for the litter.

How do you handle the puppies to promote socialization?

This is particularly important if you’re adopting a puppy older than 7-10 weeks. All the puppies in a litter should be handled individually on a regular basis and exposed to different people, situations, and environments. As this article on questions to ask a dog breeder at advocates, the puppies should have regular access to the breeder’s house so they’re accustomed to the noises of wash machines, vacuum cleaners, and other household items.

Do you test your puppies’ temperaments?

Ask if they administer the puppy aptitude test or another means of evaluating temperament. You want to know that a puppy’s personality will fit you before you bring him home.

Ask for references of people who’ve bought puppies before

Take the time to contact every reference. Ask them if the breeder gave them a puppy that was a good match for them and their family. If there were any unexpected problems with their puppy, make sure the breeder was willing to help them out.

In addition to these questions, ask your dog breeder anything else you may be interested in knowing about the breed or a particular puppy.

Before you adopt a puppy, you should see the dam and sire of the litter. If the sire isn’t available, which may be the case if he was only used for stud service, the breeder should have photos and information about him. They should also have a good reason for choosing this particular dog, not just because he was convenient. If you don’t like the temperament or physical characteristics of the dam or sire, don’t adopt their puppy.

If the breeder doesn’t feel that there’s a puppy in the litter that fits your needs, you should thank them for being honest with you. It’s hard to find a good home for a puppy and the breeder should be commended for making sure that happens, even if the home isn’t yours.


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