How best to help someone w/ puppy search? - Havanese Forum : Havanese Forums
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post #1 of 38 (permalink) Old 02-26-2009, 03:51 PM Thread Starter
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How best to help someone w/ puppy search?

How do you help friends find a puppy, when they are not able to go the "reputable breeder" route?

I have helped two friends find puppies now - both did their research and went the reputable breeder route.

But now, I have a third friend who just does not have the money to spend on a puppy from a reputable breeder. I am encouraging her to do more research into different breeds, and steered her towards petfinder.com. I am concerned she will give into those "bargain" puppies offered on the internet here and there by backyard breeders or puppy mills. I've given her good info, encouraged her to think about the cost of the dog being the least amount of money she will spend on this dog over its lifetime, and how much vet bills can add up for an unhealthy dog, etc. She was interested in a non-Hav breed and talked to one breeder (got the name from the AKC parent club website) who told her if she couldn't afford the $1800 for the dog, to check the newspaper!

At this point, I'm really trying to slow her down so she doesn't make an impulsive decision. Another mutual friend told her the same thing - that it took them well over a year to find their dog and they are glad they took the time.

Help. Do you find yourself in this position too? People asking you to help them find a pup, you educating them, etc. What do you tell them? What if they are just not willing to wait to save the money, or spend that kind of money on a dog, etc.?

Sigh!

Jane
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post #2 of 38 (permalink) Old 02-26-2009, 04:07 PM
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If she really isn't willing to work with a breeder that is going to be as invested in the dog as she is, rescue or a shelter would be the direction I'd steer her. There are so many dogs that need good homes.
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post #3 of 38 (permalink) Old 02-26-2009, 04:41 PM
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I agree with Kimberly, and just keep encouraging her to be patient! If she is set on a puppy, she'll really need to take her time since money is an issue. Remind her that money comes into it unexpectedly sometimes. My parents have two dogs they were given. To make a long story short, they were misled about the state of the dogs' vaccinations and they both caught parvo. They survived and are fine, but the vet bills were well over $1000 for just one of the dogs. My sister has two rescue rabbits. She has run into vet bills of nearly what I paid for one hav in less than a year. These are for animals with no chronic issues, just health scares. I paid the going rate for one health-tested havanese and have only paid regular vet bills. Even that has been hundreds of dollars over the last couple of years. My other hav was an unexpectedly inexpensive. It does happen!
Being very careful to know what you are getting into can save some money, but it can't prevent everything! Being patient--very patient--is the best way to find a bargain.

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post #4 of 38 (permalink) Old 02-26-2009, 05:27 PM
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Oh Jane, if time is not an issue, please please please, encourage her to got the HRI route!! We have so many rescues that are not the price that full "breeder pups" are, and they all need wonderful homes. Just another option for her~!!~

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post #5 of 38 (permalink) Old 02-26-2009, 05:41 PM
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Laurie, so far I don't think she's been interested in Havanese at all. She's been looking at another terrier breed. (Jane only mentioned it was a non-Hav breed) Otherwise, I would have encouraged the same thing.
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post #6 of 38 (permalink) Old 02-26-2009, 05:43 PM
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Jane, I would sit down and really explain to her (and give examples) of how much MORE money you can spend on vet bills by getting a puppy from a backyard breeder and/or puppy mill. Explain that a lot of those dogs require thousands of dollars in money to be treated if they have liver problems, CD, parvo, etc. and that these problems are more likely to crop up from people who don't do health testing and breed for the betterment of the breed.

If she still doesn't want to spend the money for a puppy from a reputable breeder - and honestly I don't understand people who say this because the amount of money I spend on Kubrick and Hitchcock for the necessities (vet bills, food, heartworm and flea medicine, neuter, pee pads, crates) is already huge and that doesn't even take into account the "fun" items (dog beds and toys) - then she should go the rescue route as others mentioned above.

ETA: I just saw Kimberly's post that your friend is not looking for a Hav so the CD problems may be moot, but you can still give these as examples I think.


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Last edited by Lina; 02-26-2009 at 05:47 PM.
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post #7 of 38 (permalink) Old 02-26-2009, 05:53 PM
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Oh boy. I don't have too much more to add to the already great advice you've received Jane. I seem to be the dog "nazi" lately and no one even wants my opinion...doesn't mean I don't give it.

I know when I was talking about getting a Havanese from a reputable breeder I got a ton of comments about spending "that much on a dog." I also received many "how much did she cost?" questions right after adding her to our family (which I found pretty offensive actually). I started telling strangers I found her in my driveway just because I was sick of the questions, I knew they weren't really interested in getting a Hav, just wanted to see what I spent.

Anyway, I also really had to think about where we would get the extra money for her, since I don't think it's okay to put a strain on my family for any purchase that isn't absolutely necessary for survival (although now that we have her, I think she's a necessity our family would agree on). So, I had to bite my "I want it now" and save. Every time I wanted something extra, something we didn't absolutely need it went into the puppy "jar." So, if you can just quell her "I want it right now" urge that would be great. I really do think when it comes to getting a puppy from a breeder you absolutely get what you pay for regardless of breed (and you do end up "paying" for a discount dog in the end ). Meanwhile, if she really isn't looking for a breed in particular, absolutely she should try and rescue a dog. There are far too many in rescue, as we all know.
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post #8 of 38 (permalink) Old 02-26-2009, 06:31 PM
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I would encourage them to save their money for a puppy from a reputable breeder no different then saving to have a child, buy a car or a home. Will possibly save them money in the long run.
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post #9 of 38 (permalink) Old 02-26-2009, 06:37 PM Thread Starter
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Thanks so much, for everyone's feedback on this! I will try to keep encouraging her to wait, do the research, pursue rescue (for whatever breed she ends up settling on)!

I think people sometimes are overly optimistic - they just don't think THEY will be the ones to get a dog with health problems, especially if when they actually get the dog it SEEMS healthy looking to them. Very short-term perspective. I am still worried myself about how much end-of-life health care may end up costing and whether or not my hubby and I will agree on what care my boys "need" at that stage of life....

Another question: Where do the dogs on petfinder.com come from? Exclusively from shelters? Rescue too? Other sources?

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post #10 of 38 (permalink) Old 02-26-2009, 06:38 PM Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Kathy View Post
I would encourage them to save their money for a puppy from a reputable breeder no different then saving to have a child, buy a car or a home. Will possibly save them money in the long run.
I wish everyone were willing to do this. It grieves me that many are just not of the mindset of spending more than $300 on a dog. (sigh!)

Jane
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