Thursday, May 24, 2018

Good Vs Bad Breeder: What Is A Reputable Breeder?

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Category: Want a Schnauzer

austin stance


Although I am a proponent of rescue and responsible pet practices (spay and neuter).
I enjoy seeing excellent examples of our breed and would hate to see it destroyed by the glutted and often uneducated "consumer " market. The easiest way to ensure this doesn't happen is by educating the general public about  good vs bad practices and why things need to be done within an ethical  set of  guidelines .

Lets talk a little about investment .


People seem to automatically jump to investment having to do with getting MONEY back but don't realize that work doesn't always have to do with money. Sometimes investment is seeing your hard work to make something you love better or to strengthen it. Good Breeding has more to do with improving a breed and keeping it true to its intent.

There are some interesting articles by Catherine McMillan of Minuteman Miniature  Schnauzers, I have a lot of respect for Ms.McMillan  and I enjoy her articles because they allow us to look at our breed history and see both where we come from and where we go and even though I personally have no intent on ever breeding. I seriously can appreciate a carefully planned breeding program and reading the words of someone who puts so much effort into doing it right. Ms. McMillan has a defined set of values and practices and a clear vision of what she is striving for.


Minuteman Minis have earned nearly 100 Championship titles on 4 continents since 1983. They include Best In Show, group and Best in Specialty Show winners on both sides of the equator and top producer sires in Canada, the US and Australia. (Typically, there are about 8 puppies born here in a year.) Breeding show dogs - or good ones, that is -can be an extraordinary challenge. The successful breeder must be geneticist, emergency technician, midwife, personal trainer, nutritionist, artist, ethicist and canine psychologist. It doesn't hurt to be a little obsessive compulsive, as well.

What is most interesting is her stance on out-breeding genetic defects instead of totally annihilating the line and the more I think about it honestly the more I agree with her. Yes ,those dogs that are known carriers should be used sparingly and under careful watch; But if it's a 50 /50 chance they even produce a carrier and there is also a chance a carefully planned litter may be free of that defect. In a few generations the gene can be bred-out without loosing all the good genes and further strengthening the breed .

in her  words

"Breed towards the good, not away from the bad. It is better to breed from a dog with obvious virtues and obvious faults, than it is to breed from one of overall mediocrity. What does that mean? When faced with a choice between a beautiful bitch with a bad bite and an ordinary bitch with a good one, I'll take the one with the bad bite in a heartbeat. Breeding out a bite problem is simple. Breeding in quality is hard."

It's something to think about....but also keep in mind this is not a puppymiller looking to make a buck, this is someone who has spent years of her life indexing and pouring over pedigrees and photos and histories of Schnauzers all over Canada and the world . Who isn't just out to make a buck, but to really improve her breed and keep it healthy and strong , and also a person who can see the faults even in her own dogs. Sometimes  a cure by omission is more destructive than simple careful planning. I would suggest if you're interested in the breed to read all her articles there is a lot of interesting stuff here, and take what is valuable and apply it to your own dogs.

A check list for helping you Identify a Reputable Dog Breeder.
Reputable Breeder

1. Dedication to producing quality dogs is serious avocation. Has so much invested in dogs that he struggles to break even, not make a profit. Will sell pups only to approved buyers.
2. Can explain how planned breedings are used to emphasize or minimize specific qualities through line breeding, outcrossing, or more rarely, inbreeding.
3. Does not breed dogs younger than age 2. Has breeding stock x-rayed to check for breed related problems . ie: for hip dysplasia, eyes checked , and thyroid screened. Can produce certification to prove claims.
4. Written contractual commitment to replace a dog with genetic faults or to help owner deal with problem.
5. Loves the breed and can talk at length about its background, uses, and ideal type.
6. Has an investment in dog equipment and the puppies environment is sanitary and loving.
7. Belongs to national, regional, and/or local dog clubs, indicating a love for the sport of purebred dogs. Shows their dogs as an objective test of how his stock measures up.
8. Shows litter and dam in a sanitary environment. Helps buyer evaluate and choose a pup. Explains criteria for "show prospects" versus "pet picks".
9. Prices will be at the high end of local range. Price will not reflect all that is invested in the pups. A reputable breeder never profits from the sale of puppies. Does not advertise in the newspaper. Has an established waiting list for the pups.
10. After purchase, will help you with grooming or training problems. Will take back a pup you cannot keep rather than see it disposed of inappropriately. Sells pets with spay/neuter agreement and on AKC limited registration.

another site that has excellent articals on breeders and ethical practices is

list of more articles:
sample :
So you want to be a breeder Not for the squeamish - but then neither is breeding
Things to think about BEFORE breeding your dog
Should I breed my dog?
Miracle of Birth video
I want to stand my dog at stud

and more .....including
Breeding Information
Thoughts on dog breeding
Its just one litter
I want my dog to be a mother
Think before you do
Before you breed
The cost of having a litter
Pet Overpopulation
Should you breed your dog or bitch?
So you want to breed dogs do you?
Breeding Your Dog
Seven Foundations for a Successful Dog Breeder