What do I need to know before I place a deposit on a puppy?

Oh the internet, what a wonderful and terrifying place to be. We have never had a time in history where it has been so easy to get in touch with people with whom you would otherwise not have the opportunity, so it’s extremely easy to meet breeders. Its also a place where people can pretend to be someone they’re not, so we’re going to talk about what to look for, and what are definite red flags:

COST – Just like your grandmother tried to teach you back in the day, if it looks too good to be true…it probably is. Any breeder who is worth his or her weight in salt invests a significant amount of money into their program. They do genetic testing, they spend hours working with their puppies every day, they stay in constant contact with their puppy’s future parents, they spend top dollar on food. Bottom line, they’re not going to sell you a beautiful, healthy, AKC registered dog for $500. They’re just not. Don’t fall for the cheap puppies.

SCAMMERS – Gosh darn these people. I wish we didn’t have to talk about this, but we do. Facebook is an extremely easy place to create an identity. You can basically right click on any picture out there and save it and use it as though it was your own. Unfortunately, it’s impossible to track and impossible to stop. They get caught all the time and the very next day they have a new profile with someone else’s stolen pictures. And guys, they are taking people for THOUSANDS of dollars a day. So here’s how not to get scammed: ask all the questions! Ask them about their program, why they got into breeding, why they chose to specifically breed Longhair or Smooth, use lots of phrases they should be able to easily discern and understand, and if anything feels off, trust your gut.

REFERENCES – Always ask for references. Now, I’m not a dummy, anyone can make up references, and those references can lie, but ask anyway. Most times you’ll get references right away and feel relieved after contacting them.

CONTRACT – You need to read it before you send any money. You need to understand if your deposit is refundable. If it is refundable, what are the circumstances. You need to know what the breeder is agreeing to do prior to you receiving your puppy, AND you need to know what you’re agreeing to be responsible for.

PROGRAM – Now this one is a little bit tricky. There are excellent breeders out there who are excellent because they have been so incredibly diligent that they can personally trace their program’s pedigree for generations. These people, because of their history and diligence, don’t necessarily need to do genetic testing. For the rest of us, genetic testing is absolutely imperative. Neglecting to do so could result in dogs who are deaf, blind, prone to debilitating musculoskeletal, neurological, and skin problems. So it’s important to ask about what sort of testing, if any, they do.

VACCINES – Many breeders are unaware of the dangers that certain vaccines can pose to dachshunds. It is very important to know what vaccines your breeder provides prior to your purchasing.

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