How do I find out about a specific breeder? - Havanese Forum : Havanese Forums
Ask A Breeder Have questions about a breeder or what a breeder should do? Questions about what to look for in a breeder? This is a great area to ask.

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post #1 of 17 (permalink) Old 05-30-2013, 12:46 PM Thread Starter
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How do I find out about a specific breeder?

We have found a breeder who is local to us and is charging $1100 for a puppy. We are going to her home this weekend to see the puppies that she has available and to possibly take one home. She does not do any health testing on the puppies. She gives a 1 year health guarantee and has given the first round of shots and dewormed. I should mention that we just want a companion dog. We are not looking to show the dog and we don't care about if his parents are show dogs. We like the breed and we love the personality of the Havanese. Can anyone offer any insight on how I can be sure that I'll get a good pup? I can't find anything about the breeder on line. I know she also breeds Maltese.
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post #2 of 17 (permalink) Old 05-30-2013, 01:15 PM
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I would like to say initially I would recommend that you do not go to look at the puppies until you have more information. It's very tempting when someone is close by and they currently have puppies. It's also hard to say no to the cute little fluffballs once you set eyes on them, so take a step back and think first.

It's very important that the parents of the pups are health tested. Not just vet checked, that means next to nothing. I understand that championship lines may not seem important to you if you want "just a pet", but there's more to it than that. The best way to make sure you get a healthy, sound dog with a good temperament is to obtain a pup from a breeder who health tests the parents and breeds wisely. Your dog will be a part of your family for a long time. It is worth paying a little extra for a properly bred pup to lessen the chances of health problems later which might be costly. The fee you are stating is not far from what some good breeders charge.

I am not an expert and I'm sure many others will chime in with more facts to help you.
The good folks on this forum know their stuff and it would be wise to listen to them. Don't rush in to anything, as tempting as it is.

PS: If the dogs parent's are not show dogs, where did they come from? Could they be puppy mill dogs?
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post #3 of 17 (permalink) Old 05-30-2013, 01:30 PM Thread Starter
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Rita,
Thank you so much for responding. I am totally second-guessing going this weekend and I have submitted an application to a responsible, well-respected breeder. The only problem is that we will have to wait a while for a puppy. Possibly several months. But I suppose it is worth it for a happy, healthy puppy.
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post #4 of 17 (permalink) Old 05-30-2013, 02:08 PM
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Stephanie,
It is absolutely positively worth the wait. I learned that lesson the hard way. Not only is the health testing important, but finding a breeder who will match a puppy's personality to your lifestyle is priceless and can save you a ton of heartache.
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post #5 of 17 (permalink) Old 05-30-2013, 02:17 PM
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I can't say this enough - it IS worth it to wait! I have seen so many people get pups from less reliable breeders and it opens the door to so many health issues down the line. Not to mention expense. And the guarantees are not always so useful. Once the dog is yours, you are in love, and would never think about returning it to the breeder. That would be heartbreaking. One friend of mine got a dog who developed unbelievable allergies after about a year. He was scratching and biting himself so badly and constantly and suffering so much that he eventually had to be put down. Come to find out that another person's dog from the same breeder had the same horrible allergies! Good breeders are those who take pains to make sure that they are developing lines of dogs who are healthy physically and emotionally. Hold out for the best breeder you can find. And be willing to travel. We live in New York and went all the way to Florida for our puppy. There are many great breeders right here on the forum. And be suspicious of anyone selling a Havanese for less than $2000. Good luck in your search!
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post #6 of 17 (permalink) Old 05-30-2013, 02:27 PM Thread Starter
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I found a little more info. This is what she says: AKC registered, CERF, champion bloodlines. 16 years breeding experience.
How can I verify this?
Also - doing the tests...how does that guarantee a healthy dog? We had a pedigree Cairn terrier when I was a kid and he developed Cushings Disease and a brain tumor. Please help me understand.
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post #7 of 17 (permalink) Old 05-30-2013, 03:08 PM
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Personally, at a minimum I'd like to see hips, eyes, elbows, patellas, heart, bile acid, and baer testing done. While it won't guarantee a healthy puppy, it certainly will put the odds in your favor.

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post #8 of 17 (permalink) Old 05-30-2013, 03:31 PM
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Health testing (most of them) is done on the parents, not the puppies - it's to ensure your puppy is coming from good lines healthwise. Obviously, this doesn't guarantee that you'll get a dog who will be healthy, because illness happens even in the best of lines.


Here's a thread about what to look for/ask/etc.
http://www.havaneseforum.com/showthread.php?t=16008
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Last edited by misstray; 05-30-2013 at 03:34 PM.
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post #9 of 17 (permalink) Old 05-30-2013, 03:43 PM
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Good point - I should have clarified that - while some testing can be done earlier, final testing is usually done at 2 years of age and eyes are re-tested annually.

Sara & GCH Halle
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post #10 of 17 (permalink) Old 05-30-2013, 06:10 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by stephaniekay View Post
Rita,
Thank you so much for responding. I am totally second-guessing going this weekend and I have submitted an application to a responsible, well-respected breeder. The only problem is that we will have to wait a while for a puppy. Possibly several months. But I suppose it is worth it for a happy, healthy puppy.
It is absolutely worth the wait!!! Between finding a breeder and waiting for my puppy, the process took me most of a year. I haven't regretted that wait for a moment. I got a WONDERFUL, healthy dog, with w fantstic disposition from a breeder who does all the proper health testing, does a FANTASTIC job raising the pups, and has been an on-going resource for me in the years since I got Kodi. That's the kind of experience I wish everyone could have.

Just the price of these puppies is too low. Quality Havanese puppies (and I'm not talking about "show quality", I'm talking about good, healthy, well-raised puppies with good dispositions and health tested parents typically go in the $1800 - $2500 range. This definitely sounds like a back yard breeder to me... In it for the money, not for the breed.
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