Hi Samoyed People,
Our family is looking for a Samoyed from a good breeder. We have done over 6 weeks of research so far, reading lots of articles and learning as much about the breed as possible.
We are looking for a good breeder because we understand that a dog is a decade long (or more) commitment and NOT an impulse decision. Although a dog is a financial investment initially, it is also a member of the family and becomes an emotional investment that appreciates greatly overtime. Sometimes becoming more valuable than other family members! Naturally, the better the breeder, the better we will feel about the long term! After all, you never know! Things can get rough in 5 years and a good breeder will be good to have around!
The problem right now is finding a 'good' breeder and how to distinguish between them all. I've spoken to a handful of breeders extensively over the phone and email. Some are friendly and eager to talk for hours whilst others are unfriendly, impatient and snappy. But does friendliness necessarily make them 'good breeders'? Maybe, maybe not. I've noticed that the friendlier breeders are usually reputable, have better looking dogs and recommended by other breeders in the breeder community. The friendlier breeders are also willing to share personal experiences! Some and disclose testing information openly such as health (e.g. hip scores, eye scores etc) and temperament test results. Some openly brag about their show achievements (e.g. points, australian champion, australian grand champion etc). But are facts (i.e. test scores) alone enough to make a decision? How about personal experiences? How about the breeder as a person and how friendly they are? There's A LOT to take in! The more research we do the more difficult it has become to make a decision, albeit a right one!
Then there's the timing question of, 'When will you have puppies?'. It would be (almost) pointless building a relationship with a breeder, keeping tabs, checking waiting list status etc if the breeder plans to have puppies in over 12 months!
Initially we were going to do a first come first serve basis. We had assumed ALL breeders were the same, give or take a few champion dogs. We were mistaken! After getting ALL THE INFORMATION from this particular breeder (who was first to have puppies available) we realised that there was A LOT OF FINE PRINT!! For example, non-refundable deposit policy, pixelated photos, ambiguous post sales support, with very specific and evasive wording in the contract and emails. Whenever I had a specific (sometimes obscure) question that I wanted to ask 'just in case', it would be replied with a blunt and open ended answer. So now I feel 'first come first serve' is NOT the way to go about choosing. We need to be patient.
There's also local VS interstate VS international? What are the pros and cons? What are the costs involved? Wouldn't local be better, logistically speaking?
Now, I am compiling a list of breeders and ranking them:
1. When are puppies due?
2. What are the breeder's credentials?
3. What are the puppy's parents credentials i.e. BOTH the mum and dad?
3. Is the breeder friendly AND approachable?
4. Is the contract mutually fair?
5. Are they recommended by other breeders?
6. Are they recommended by other customers? Hence my first forum post!
7. Do I feel comfortable making a purchase from this breeder?
8. Are the puppies sound? Do the puppies reflect their good parentage?
10. Can I see puppies before making a deposit?
11. Can I choose a puppy or will it be chosen for me?
12. Are they local? or interstate?
I know most peoples' selection criteria is subjective and very personal. I want to reinforce that I'm a NOOBIE and this is just my list, NOT something that I'm prescribing to others. If ANYONE has ANYTHING to add, please feel free to do so and PLEASE COMMENT! I'm sure this info will help others as it will help our family in making a decision. The more input the merrier!
N.B. Sorry if this is in the wrong section. Admin can feel free to move this thread to another forum topic.