rescue vs breeder - Mothering Forums

View Poll Results: Do you rescue or buy
rescue from shelter or rescue group 67 78.82%
buy from a breeder 12 14.12%
other-please explain 6 7.06%
Voters: 85. You may not vote on this poll

Forum Jump: 
Reply
 
Thread Tools
#1 of 89 Old 08-04-2006, 05:53 PM - Thread Starter
 
mamamillet's Avatar
 
Join Date: May 2004
Location: east TN
Posts: 1,968
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
So I was wondering about the overall feeling of those on this forum with regards to rescue dogs (including puppies) versus breeder dogs.
I have always been partial to rescuing a dog or pup from local animal shelters instead of buying one from a breeder. I do understand that there is a level of predictability that you get when buying a dog from a breeder and could understand that option when looking for something specific but if you are just wanting canine companionship I have always felt that rescuing was a better option. Thats my opinion--whats yours?

Mama to ds 6/00 and dd 1/09
mamamillet is offline  
Sponsored Links
Advertisement
 
#2 of 89 Old 08-04-2006, 07:16 PM
 
EdlynsMom's Avatar
 
Join Date: Aug 2005
Location: Houston, Texas
Posts: 1,106
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
I voted rescue.... My reasoning is that since there are SO many animals that need good homes in shelters/rescue groups, folks should check there first. You really can find a gem of a dog/cat/"other" taht someone else for whatever reason couldnt keep. It may be a bit more work, but really, when are animals not work? I am always a bit put off when someone tells me they just got an animal from a breeder. If they plan to show it, Im a little less put off. If they plan to breed it (and arent established, responsible breeders), Im just pi**ed.
EdlynsMom is offline  
#3 of 89 Old 08-04-2006, 08:38 PM
 
DesireeH's Avatar
 
Join Date: Mar 2003
Location: Orange County, CA
Posts: 8,218
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 1 Post(s)
I voted other. DH got our male boxer out of the pennysaver (newspaper ad). So technically it was a breeder but the place was a dump. A few years later we got our female boxer by just taking her. Some people were abusing her, she was tied to a pole, skinny, with no food and water in 105 heat for days in our friends' neighbors backyard so they broke the fence and got her out and let her go and then called me to drive by and "find" her.) They called animal people multiple times but no one would help her, they even sent pics, well we took matters into our own hands.

Desiree

DesireeH is offline  
#4 of 89 Old 08-04-2006, 09:15 PM
 
PennyRoo's Avatar
 
Join Date: Dec 2004
Location: The ocean state
Posts: 684
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
I voted shelter. I can't think of a reason to go through a breeder unless you, too, are a professional breeder. So many dogs are euthanized each day for lack of homes.

My childhood dogs were always mutts from shelters. If someone is looking for a specific breed, there are rescue groups for nearly every type of breed imaginable. For the past 16 years we have adopted a number of adult labs through various labrador retriever rescues. Even though several of the dogs were poorly socialized and likely abused, labs are such great, sweet, wonderful, family-oriented and gentle dogs that with lots of love they turned around fast and ended up being amazing pets.

We currently have a lab who was a Hurriacan Katrina casualty - I adopted him in this past October through a group that rescues labs and lab mixes in the south and re-homes them in the north east. My pup came without manners and in very poor health but he is a big, gentle goof and I trust him implicitly around our DD and her friends. (Having a child, Labs are just about the only breed of adult dog I would adopt without knowing *anything* about their past history.) I can't say enough about how rescuing has enrished our lives. It's like the dogs realize they got a good deal and are immeasurably grateful and loyal, and want to repay you one thousand fold. As I type my boy is sprawled out with his head on my foot.

Mama to 2 mopheaded rascals
PennyRoo is offline  
#5 of 89 Old 08-05-2006, 12:00 AM
 
Al Dente's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2004
Location: A safe place
Posts: 1,636
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
I think it depends immeasurably on the dog and the dog's breed, but I wouldn't be comfortable, nor would I have the time/energy/emotional wherewithal necessary to devote to a rescued dog. If I didn't have a baby and my dog was going to become my mission, it would be one thing. I have seen way too many wacked-out rescue dogs that need way more than they are given adopted by owners who pet them for 10 minutes a day and call it even. They need an owner that will go the extra mile and put up with any neurosis they may have and will really work with them, and work hard at getting the dog to be as "normal" as possible.

I'm not saying every rescue dog is like that, but many of the ones I've known/heard/come in contact with have been. For those reasons, I would get a dog from a reputable breeder rather than a rescue.
Al Dente is offline  
#6 of 89 Old 08-05-2006, 12:31 AM
 
ItyBty's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2006
Location: CT
Posts: 1,678
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
First off - let me just say that I take NO issue at all with responsible breeders, and I think that what they do is awesome.

That said, I've always been a rescue-dog kind of girl, mostly because here in the money/status area of CT we live in, there are SO many people with "papered" pooches that I feel like there are more than enough people willing to take a purebred dog, and not enough who want or don't mind a mutt. I've always had rescued/free dogs of all sorta of breeds, and I've never minded the little bit of extra attention they need.
ItyBty is offline  
#7 of 89 Old 08-05-2006, 01:06 AM
 
lrlittle's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2005
Location: Austin, TX
Posts: 1,109
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Rescue all the way. What is a "responsible" breeder?

Mama to two beautiful sons Wife to DH
lrlittle is offline  
#8 of 89 Old 08-05-2006, 01:14 AM
 
livinzoo's Avatar
 
Join Date: Dec 2005
Location: Flowery Branch, GA
Posts: 1,320
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Almost all the animals in my house are rescue. My rescue list includes 2 dogs, 4 cats, 3 birds, 1 snake, and 1 lizard. I've also rescued some other abandoned animals and found new homes for them.
livinzoo is offline  
#9 of 89 Old 08-05-2006, 01:51 AM
 
MamaAllNatural's Avatar
 
Join Date: Mar 2004
Location: Nearest chair with *ONE* nursling!
Posts: 6,882
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Quote:
Originally Posted by lrlittle
What is a "responsible" breeder?
What is....the_kimballs??

Yay, I win!! : (what is my prize?)


I voted "rescue" and I believe strongly in it. I do think though that as far as the "breeder" answer goes there is a *huge* difference between backyard breeders/puppy mills and actual, true responsible breeders. A huge one.


*ETA: I just wanted to add that rescues can be very young puppies too with no issues. That's what our puppy was. They rescued him (and his siblings) from a high kill shelter. They were only about 5 weeks old...no chance they could've been messed up for life, kwim?
MamaAllNatural is offline  
#10 of 89 Old 08-05-2006, 02:14 AM
 
Sailor's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2006
Location: CA
Posts: 2,433
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
If I just want a companion dog, or one for the more "casual" training/competitions ... then I would definitely go with a rescue. I work with a GSD rescue organization, and growing up we always had rescues and fosters in our home. However, we did purchase a few GSD's from good breeders in the years I was growing up in order to pursue more serious competitions such as Schutzhund, etc. I have a GSD now, whom I did purchase from a good breeder precisely because I wanted to pursue Schutzhund. When I have the room, time, and money for more pets, I'll probably go the rescue route. It just depends what I want to be doing with those dogs.

First special delivery - April 2010 :
Sailor is offline  
#11 of 89 Old 08-05-2006, 02:17 AM
 
AlbertaJes's Avatar
 
Join Date: May 2006
Location: Northern Alberta, Canada
Posts: 1,751
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Most of our pets come from shelters. We've always found wonderful pets that way.

However, I will, at some point, buy from a breeder.
It's been my dream since I met one at age 2, to share my life with a Great Dane. Because of the short life span and numerous potential health problems those wonderful dogs have, I want to start out with the healthiest I can. That means a reputable breeder and tons of research on my part.

Mom to K (06.23.06) & A (09.13.09)
AlbertaJes is offline  
#12 of 89 Old 08-05-2006, 02:24 AM
 
Treasuremapper's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2004
Posts: 3,589
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 4 Post(s)
I do not intend to get any more dogs, but when I used to get dogs, I only did rescue. My reason is that breeding creates more dogs and there are plenty of pure bred dogs down at our local kill facility. There are plenty of sweet, wonderful, deserving dogs out there and I do not want to contribute the problem of pet overpopulation.

That said, I would consider buying from a breeder under certain very limited circumstances, so limited that it is hard for me to even imagine them.
Treasuremapper is offline  
#13 of 89 Old 08-05-2006, 10:52 AM
 
LittleMonkeyMom's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2003
Location: A Banana Tree
Posts: 154
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
I voted rescue. We have three dogs, one that came from an all-breed rescue/shelter and two others that were adopted from a breed-specific rescue (American Brittany Rescue). We did not want to participate in any competitions that would require an official AKC registration number, so it just made sense for us to adopt. Also, if we did want to compete with the dogs in obedience, agility or a few other competitions, we could do a certain type of AKC registration that would allow us to compete in those events. We just could not compete in conformation shows and field trials.

I also personally feel that buying from a breeder may give some people a false sense of security in that they are getting a "known" quantity. It may give them an edge health-wise, but as far as personality goes, personal experience leads me to believe that a lot is just the luck of the draw.

Warmest Wishes to my fellow dog lovers! :
LittleMonkeyMom is offline  
#14 of 89 Old 08-05-2006, 12:45 PM
 
thekimballs's Avatar
 
Join Date: Feb 2004
Location: NH
Posts: 5,642
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
If getting a dog from a breeder is the luck of the draw, then there's something wrong with your breeder!

I've gotten dogs and cats from both breeders and rescue; right now any dog I get would come from a breeder.

Where I do think a breeder isn't magic is in the end behavior of the dog. But that's not because breeders can't predict temperament or personality--we actually can, to a great extent--it's because behavior depends on YOU. How you react to a puppy's normal actions, how you train, how you socialize, and so on can turn a sound, healthy puppy into a monster or a timid, retiring puppy into a fabulous, confident pet.

But any good breeder should be able to hand you a puppy and genuinely predict how it is going to look, what health problems or strengths it is likely to have, what food it should eat for maximum health, and so on.

And, of course, what you are really buying from a breeder is the next ten or fifteen years of that breeder's life. You're paying to be able to rely on that person to answer the phone at 3 am if your dog has a health crisis, to always be available to give reliable advice on anything from training to food to care to major veterinary decisions, and also to have a permanent, caring, good place for that dog should anything ever happen to you, to him, or to your life that means you can't keep him. A lot of posts we see here are about giving up dogs, or considering giving up dogs, or finding a new home for a dog. It's awfully nice to have somebody waiting in the wings, ready to take your dog if anything happens.

It's also true that responsible breeders don't contribute to overpopulation. We actually produce only a small fraction of the purebred dogs in the US, and no good breeder will ever let a dog or a puppy of that dog end up in a rescue or shelter. I have an extremely strict policy of never allowing any dog of mine to be bred without my permission (I retain rights that would prevent you from ever registering any puppy with AKC, and my contract states that you owe me a thousand dollars for each puppy that you produce without asking me first), and my contract is neither extreme nor unusual--it's what we all do.

When a family has young children and is considering a difficult breed, either one with major health issues or one with prey drive issues or aggression issues anywhere in the breed's makeup, I strongly recommend going to a responsible breeder over rescue (breed-specific rescue is fine).

And thanks, MamaAllNatural .
thekimballs is offline  
#15 of 89 Old 08-05-2006, 03:27 PM
 
shannon0218's Avatar
 
Join Date: Oct 2003
Location: Ontario, Canada
Posts: 11,573
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Hey MAN! What about me???

Like Joanna said, if your going to a breeder is luck of the draw, you need to do better research on breeders. Purchasing from a breeder is as much work on your part as it is on ours, you see, when well meaning but under educated on the process people buy from a "breeder" and get a crappy dog but then go around saying "Hey, what happened, I bought him from a good breeder!!" then when we actually look into things, they bought from the utmost back yard breeder going.

For me, always from a breeder, but I work my dogs, it's hard enough to get a top sport dog from a perfect genetic matching, I'm not taking my chances putting $5000 of training into a dog tat will never make it.
I think it's VERY important to consider the rescue too. Around here at least, way too many (like I've so far found one rescue that isnt' like this) are so bloody eager to get you a dog that they dont' take any considerations into account. I remember doing a consult on a dog who was downright nasty, the family had a 2 yr old, mom had MS and was essentially confined to a wheelchair most of the day and dad was....well dad was a dick. The minute I walked in, I recognized the dog!! I'd done a consult for him 3 weeks before and advised the owners to take him back to the rescue--his first day there he bit both the owners--one badly. When this new family adopted him they told him he was a total mush, never shown any signs of aggresion. (of course that's the same thing they'd told the people before)
New family decided to believe the rescue people over the master trainer. One month later the dog mauled (and I mean MAULED) a local dog walker while she was walking him.
The new family is suing the rescue and I will be testifying on their behalf--this rescue continues to adopt out dogs without telling anything about history--even when they know it.
shannon0218 is offline  
#16 of 89 Old 08-05-2006, 03:59 PM
 
MamaAllNatural's Avatar
 
Join Date: Mar 2004
Location: Nearest chair with *ONE* nursling!
Posts: 6,882
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Shannon, I thought of you too but it seemed like a one answer question (like jeopardy) and I figured you're not techinally breeding right now so...


I think that is the most important difference...that responsible breeders always take the dogs back and that they never contribute to overpopulation. Backyard breeders and puppymills are the *cause* of pet overpopulation. It should be two separate options in the poll but unfortunately a lot of people *think* they bought from a responsible breeder when in fact they did not.

I know that if people stuck to only responsible breeders (like Joanna *&* Shannon ) and rescues the pet overpopulation problem in the US would cease to exist. I wish they could outlaw BYB's and Puppymills.
MamaAllNatural is offline  
#17 of 89 Old 08-05-2006, 04:10 PM - Thread Starter
 
mamamillet's Avatar
 
Join Date: May 2004
Location: east TN
Posts: 1,968
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Overpopulation is just that...more pets than available homes. Anyone that breeds contributes to the overpopulation. Responsible breeders, if they are good, will always take their pups back and that is what keeps them from contributing to the "unwanted, homeless" pet population, which is a good thing indeed.

Mama to ds 6/00 and dd 1/09
mamamillet is offline  
#18 of 89 Old 08-05-2006, 04:26 PM
Banned
 
DebraBaker's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2002
Location: PA
Posts: 4,995
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
As much as I love dogs and had dogs growing up, our space isn't fit for a dog and we are cat people.

I adopt adult cats. I really feel strongly that I should rescue an adult cat and they usually speak to me.

Presently, we have a sweet little rescue kitty, Meg.
DebraBaker is offline  
#19 of 89 Old 08-05-2006, 10:32 PM
 
LittleMonkeyMom's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2003
Location: A Banana Tree
Posts: 154
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
I should preface my post with the fact that I am taking it for granted that most people understand that not all shelters and rescues are created equal, as not all breeders are necessarily responsible. Nor would I ever imply that there is no difference between good breeders and the horrid back-yard breeders and puppy millers. It behooves one to always consider the expertise and experience of their pets' source, be it rescue or breeder.

Quote:
Originally Posted by thekimballs
If getting a dog from a breeder is the luck of the draw, then there's something wrong with your breeder!
As I mentioned in my previous post, we don't have a breeder, we rescue our dogs. However, my parents have been raising and competing with dogs for over 25 years, so I am not without any practical experience in this matter. And I should also state that as my experience is almost solely with breed-specific rescue groups, that colors my perspective.

Quote:
Originally Posted by thekimballs
Where I do think a breeder isn't magic is in the end behavior of the dog. But that's not because breeders can't predict temperament or personality--we actually can, to a great extent--it's because behavior depends on YOU. How you react to a puppy's normal actions, how you train, how you socialize, and so on can turn a sound, healthy puppy into a monster or a timid, retiring puppy into a fabulous, confident pet.

But any good breeder should be able to hand you a puppy and genuinely predict how it is going to look, what health problems or strengths it is likely to have, what food it should eat for maximum health, and so on.
While I do agree that a good breeder can predict the general temperament of a pup (assertive, submissive, easy-going, timid, etc.), to my knowledge there is no way to definitively predict if a dog if a dog will have a love of competition, a desire to perform consistently, perfect conformation and enough natural instinct and talent to perform the job each particular breed has been bred to do. I also know of no breeders who can absolutely guarantee that a pup will not grow up to be a barker, a chowhound, a couch potato (comparatively), etc.

I would never argue that the owners of the pup do not have a huge influence. They do much to foster talent and bring out the most positive attributes of a dog, and conversely can bring a dog to ruin. Yet, I firmly believe it is not strictly an issue of nature vs nurture. Dogs (and really, most animals) have personalities, abilities and talents every bit as wide and varied as that of humans.

When one adopts a dog, the foster family knowledgable in the breed can give the adopter an idea of some of these things. That is why I do not believe it is entirely accurate to say that buying a pup from a responsible breeder gets one more of a "known quantity" than does adopting from a rescue.

Quote:
Originally Posted by thekimballs
And, of course, what you are really buying from a breeder is the next ten or fifteen years of that breeder's life. You're paying to be able to rely on that person to answer the phone at 3 am if your dog has a health crisis, to always be available to give reliable advice on anything from training to food to care to major veterinary decisions, and also to have a permanent, caring, good place for that dog should anything ever happen to you, to him, or to your life that means you can't keep him. A lot of posts we see here are about giving up dogs, or considering giving up dogs, or finding a new home for a dog. It's awfully nice to have somebody waiting in the wings, ready to take your dog if anything happens.
I think a person can get these things without paying hundreds or thousands of dollars for a puppy. Most responsible breeders I've ever met will not hesitate to help someone with their dog, whether purchased from them, another person or adopted through rescue. At the very least, she will direct an owner toward the necessary resources. In fact, many responsible breeders are actively involved in their breeds' rescue programs and connect with adoptive families regularly, providing a wealth of support and knowledge for no other reason than a great love of dogs.
LittleMonkeyMom is offline  
#20 of 89 Old 08-05-2006, 10:53 PM
Banned
 
Pandora114's Avatar
 
Join Date: Apr 2005
Location: Shamelessly using "devices"
Posts: 6,717
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
I would go with a REPUTABLE breeder, CKC/AKC registered breeder. Why? Rescue dogs can be damaged goods, and I have yet to find an upfront rescue organization about the dog.

My mother, when she was breeding Sharpei, had a temperment guarantee. Thar's right, she guaranteed their temperments. She BRED for temperment FIRST comformation second.

She produced a few champions, not a whole heck of a lot..but her dogs were the most loving, most caring biggest wuffle of wrinkles ever.

They were truly embassadors of the breed.

Rescue dogs, more often than not have been put through SO MUCH Crap that they need to really be worked with to overcome it. I have a small child, and another on the way. I'd rather have a dog that has a guaranteed good temperment than the luck of a draw from a rescue org.

I will not jepordize my childrens safety on something like that...

With a breeder, you're getting more than a dog. You're getting 24/7 support and knowledge of your dog.

My mom willingly took back any dog she placed, no questions asked (she did have a legal contract stating what she would give refunds for though, sometimes she didn't refund the money but she DID take the dog back)

Reputable breeders totally discourage impulse buying. They take the time to educate the prospective buyers about the breed, about the needs, and acctually work with the family to see if the needs of the family = the type of dog they want. If not, the breeder will reffer them to another breed of dog that would be a closer match to their lifestyle. Shelters dont do that. Shelters rarely ever have staff knowledgeable enough in one particular breed, let alone the HUNDREDS that go through their doors each day...with a breeder you get an encyclopedia...
Pandora114 is offline  
#21 of 89 Old 08-05-2006, 11:00 PM
 
Meli65's Avatar
 
Join Date: Apr 2002
Location: the town where rock lives
Posts: 2,138
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
We got our last dog, Barry, as a puppy from a shelter and he was a sweet, sweet dog (he's now with another family -- long story, but he was miserable when we moved from a house to an apartment). He was a Black Lab/pit bull mix though the shelter only told us about the lab part ... I imagine they knew the rest (or could guess, nobody knows for sure. he was found running through the streets) since it was when I took him out for walks that all the neighborhood kids identified him as a pit.

I don't think pits are \necessarily bad, and he was a gentle sweetheart, but I think if I had had small children at the time I would have been a little more disturbed at this news. So, although I answered "shelter dog" if we do get another dog I would maybe consider a breeder ... if only to get another keeshond, the kind of dog I grew up with. Hmm. Nothing like MDC to get you thinking!
Meli65 is offline  
#22 of 89 Old 08-05-2006, 11:37 PM
 
RainbowsMum's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2006
Location: Still learning to live
Posts: 666
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
I voted rescue. Reason? There are way way way too many animals out there (Not just dogs) without good safe homes. Breeders animals will always get a home eventually, and most likely to a good home (Not many people will pay good $$ to have an animal just to abuse it - Although I'm sure those sorts of people are out there) Animals in shelters may not, and many end up being put down if they're round too long.
RainbowsMum is offline  
#23 of 89 Old 08-05-2006, 11:42 PM
 
lrlittle's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2005
Location: Austin, TX
Posts: 1,109
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Breeding just seems a little creepy to me at best. And at worst, cruel. Dogs are "made" to have a certain shape/look/temperament. Many of them have their ears clipped or tails docked just to fit the right look so they can win a contest. I just don't get it. Seems like playing God to me.

I live in a city where 40,000 animals are euthanized in a year. So it's hard for me to see a reason to make more animals.

Mama to two beautiful sons Wife to DH
lrlittle is offline  
#24 of 89 Old 08-06-2006, 12:44 AM
 
LittleMonkeyMom's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2003
Location: A Banana Tree
Posts: 154
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Quote:
Originally Posted by Pandora114
I would go with a REPUTABLE breeder, CKC/AKC registered breeder. Why? Rescue dogs can be damaged goods, and I have yet to find an upfront rescue organization about the dog.
I'm so sorry you haven't had the good fortune of working with a reputable/responsible rescue organization. That's very sad to hear. Also, my goal in responding to this post is not to sway your opinion. Everyone has their own boundaries and comfort levels that should be respected. However, I'd like to respond to a few comments for anyone else who may be reading this thread.

As I mentioned before, not all shelters and rescues operate to the same standards, just as all breeders are not committed to the same level of responsibility. If we are going to compare breeders to rescues/shelters, it's important to compare apples to apples. Whether one is adopting or buying, that person needs to do her homework and find out just how much support each provides and how knowledgable each is about the breed(s) they are adopting or selling.

I fully agree that some rescue dogs carry a lot of baggage with them. Sadly, that is unavoidable. I wish it were otherwise, but then we wouldn't be having this conversation--every animal would have a caring home and shelters/rescues would be a thing of the past. However, it is possible to adopt a puppy or young dog who is much more of a blank slate, waiting for the right family to welcome her into their home and guide her through the process of becoming a valued member of the family. Our lab and our first adopted Brittany were both pups when we adopted them. Sally (lab) was eight weeks old and Reilly was five months old. Our second adopted Brittany, Bandit, was adopted as a young adult. Both boys came from American Brittany Rescue (ABR). Our lab was adopted from an all-breed rescue.

Like good breeders, both rescue organizations had a lengthy application process, interviews and home visits to be sure we would be responsible pet owners. Included in the contracts we signed were provisions that we would surrender the animals back to the rescue should we be unable to care for them anymore. This is in their best interests as they don't want to adopt animals into situations no better than from those they were saved. We needed not much support from the all-breed rescue, so I can't comment extensively on them, but ABR provides its adoptive families with a ton of support and a nation-wide network of experts.

I don't claim that rescue is for everyone. It's not perfect, anymore than all breeders are perfect or the optimal solution. However, I would say that if people are willing to do the research they would be for a dog purchased from a breeder, chances are they could find a rescue or even a shelter dog that could meet their needs. Unless those needs require an AKC registration number and/or the animal to be intact, but that's an entirely different can of worms.
LittleMonkeyMom is offline  
#25 of 89 Old 08-06-2006, 01:02 AM
 
Irishmommy's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2001
Location: In the bat cave with heartmama
Posts: 45,457
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Rescue doesn't always work. We have allergy issues in our house, and size preferences, so we needed a smaller non shedding dog, which really narrowed it down. Petfinder was useless - last time I looked, it showed my 2 provinces and 3 or 4 states (that were all "local") and there was ONE dog that met our criteria. But the description for that dog was that it needed a quiet home, so we didn't meet their criteria. Between online and in person, I have been in contact with shelters within a 7 hour drive of Toronto, and there was still nothing suitable.
Irishmommy is offline  
#26 of 89 Old 08-06-2006, 01:38 AM
 
thekimballs's Avatar
 
Join Date: Feb 2004
Location: NH
Posts: 5,642
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Quote:
Originally Posted by lrlittle
Breeding just seems a little creepy to me at best. And at worst, cruel. Dogs are "made" to have a certain shape/look/temperament. Many of them have their ears clipped or tails docked just to fit the right look so they can win a contest. I just don't get it. Seems like playing God to me.

I live in a city where 40,000 animals are euthanized in a year. So it's hard for me to see a reason to make more animals.
Every single puppy in the US comes from a breeder. There are no wild dogs here, so every born puppy came about because somebody let their female dog get pregnant, and many times *wanted* their female dog to get pregnant. If you own a female dog that gets pregnant, you are legally and morally a breeder, and you are playing God with every puppy you produce.

So you can't escape from "creepy" breeding, unless you want to sterilize all the dogs in America and end the canine population in ten years or so.

If you don't want to do that, then you have to divide the breeders into two groups: those who deliberately breed for specific traits like appearance, temperament, coat, working ability, and so on--and those who throw their dog's cha cha toward any male who comes down the street (or, and this is in my opinion worse, decide that because their girl is purebred or looks purebred, they can make some money if they get her together with Uncle Marv's similar male). If they can't sell the puppies, they go to the shelter. If someone buys one and then that dog bites someone, off it goes to the shelter too. One of these breeding choices is, to me, creepy--but it sure isn't the first one.

The "contests" we go to are far more positively motivated and contribute more to the health of the breed as a whole than you think--show breeders are open to peer criticism and their pedigrees are an open book. Because I am a show breeder, I can steer you toward a dog likely to be healthy, look like it's supposed to look (and function the way it's supposed to function), and so on, even if it's not my own or even close to my breeding. Do some dock and crop? Yes, but many do not, and even those who do are generally doing it because they're passionately devoted to the historical and traditional appearance of the dog, not to win contests (i.e., docking/cropping are a function of the dog's original job--they became a practice long before dog shows even existed). I don't crop, even though my breed is traditionally cropped, and I feel perfectly free to make that choice and not be penalized by my friends and peers.

Every breeder is the diety of the puppies he or she produces--there you're right.

I'll continue to say: Many rescues are wonderful. Many shelters function under an impossible workload and crushing grief and do the very best they can. If you have the time, resources, and money to rescue and rehab a dog, and you don't need very specific things in terms of health or coat or whatever, then the shelter/rescue should be the first place you head. But there is absolutely nothing morally or ethically wrong with buying from a responsible, ethical, high-quality breeder instead, and for some families it is the far better choice.
thekimballs is offline  
#27 of 89 Old 08-06-2006, 01:46 AM
 
shannon0218's Avatar
 
Join Date: Oct 2003
Location: Ontario, Canada
Posts: 11,573
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Tara, indeed a breeder can predict the things you are speaking about temperment and workability wise. It's actually what I do. Any dog entering our breeding program will have the pedigree researched for months. Before using that dog or purchasing that dog I will be able to tell you about the working ability, drive, tracking ability, agility, size, and what motivates pretty much every last dog in his background. While not a guarentee, it is NOT something you can say about rescue.
Many dogs in rescue are indeed damaged goods, the average person does not give up the perfect dog just because he's perfect, it happens, owners die, someone becomes allergic, what have you--but the large majority of animals currently in the rescue "loop" are there because something is wrong with them--it may well be something easy to fix, but it's pretty much a guarentee that if they're there as young or older adults that they have NOT had the benefit of a proper upbringing as a puppy--for someone who works their dog, if I'm going to loose the big trial, I want it to be because of something *I* did, not something someone else did wrong.

I can tell you that the #1 reason my stud is used is to increase tracking drive, so I'm not sure what kind of dogs your parents are raising or how qualified they are in doing so, but the things you are stating can't be done are exactly the things that are done by *good* dog breeders.
shannon0218 is offline  
#28 of 89 Old 08-06-2006, 01:53 AM
 
shannon0218's Avatar
 
Join Date: Oct 2003
Location: Ontario, Canada
Posts: 11,573
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Joanna : ChaCha :

: :
shannon0218 is offline  
#29 of 89 Old 08-06-2006, 02:16 AM
 
thekimballs's Avatar
 
Join Date: Feb 2004
Location: NH
Posts: 5,642
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Quote:
Originally Posted by LittleMonkeyMom
While I do agree that a good breeder can predict the general temperament of a pup (assertive, submissive, easy-going, timid, etc.), to my knowledge there is no way to definitively predict if a dog if a dog will have a love of competition, a desire to perform consistently, perfect conformation and enough natural instinct and talent to perform the job each particular breed has been bred to do. I also know of no breeders who can absolutely guarantee that a pup will not grow up to be a barker, a chowhound, a couch potato (comparatively), etc.
Good grief, of course we can. Like I said, BEHAVIOR depends on you. But I can certainly say to you as I hand you an eight-week-old puppy that I am reasonably certain that if you do everything I tell you to, this dog will like showing x amount (based on pedigree and temperament tests), will have this or that conformation strength or fault pattern, is probably (or probably not) going to be a barker, whether there is good food motivation and good eating in the pedigree, etc.

I'm now in my third generation of breeding in my own house (making me a very young breeder). I have also spent a huge amount of time with the two generations before that, including littermates, cousins, etc. My own breeder, where I got my first dog from, has been working with the same direct line for about ten generations. I know, or know of, reasonably well, probably 100 dogs that either contributed to or are direct ascendants of a puppy I'm selling. It becomes like knowing a family well--Oscar's kids are a little sharper with other dogs, no matter who he's bred to, so socialization and early discipline are important. Luca was an absolute mush, but died of bone cancer early and so we're watching that in any dog he's closer related to. Fresca's kids and grandkids all tend to love and do well with babies, and so on and so on.

This year I'm becoming a first-time puppy purchaser again, because we're buying a Cardigan Corgi for my older kids to have a more direct hand in dogdom (the Danes are simply too big for them to handle, and if I tried to convince myself otherwise I'd be doing all of us a disservice). So we're introducing a new breed, and since that's what I "do" with dogs, we're getting a show-potential bitch and we will eventually breed her if she shows successfully and passes her health tests. I started talking to the breeder a year ago, waiting for just the right litter, and when she talked to me even back then, she said, "Oh, well, we're thinking of a litter in the summer with [let's just call him Jack]. You'd have fun--they're fabulous show dogs, work really well with owner-handlers or handlers, they'll have great shoulder sets, but every single Jack puppy is a barker." This breeding was a twinkle in her (or Jack's) eye, but she could still predict very easily what the litter was going to look and act and even bark like! That to me is a sign of a breeder who really knows where her towel is.
thekimballs is offline  
#30 of 89 Old 08-06-2006, 02:21 AM
 
lrlittle's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2005
Location: Austin, TX
Posts: 1,109
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Joanna,
We're coming from two totally different places. I just don't get it. I could care less if my dog as you put it, "functions the way it's supposed to" , "looks like it's supposed to look", or has a HUMAN'S imposed "historical and traditional appearance". I just care about animals period, no matter if they fit into some mold. We have a really bad overpopulation problem in this country and animals are suffering because of it.

And until we don't have tens of thousands of animals in our city dying each year I certainly don't worry about the canine population ending anytime soon. For that reason I think everyone should head for the rescues.

Mama to two beautiful sons Wife to DH
lrlittle is offline  
Reply

User Tag List

Thread Tools
Show Printable Version Show Printable Version
Email this Page Email this Page


Forum Jump: 

Posting Rules  
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are On
Pingbacks are On
Refbacks are Off