Maltese Dogs Forum : Spoiled Maltese Forums banner

1 - 20 of 25 Posts

·
Registered
Joined
·
7,915 Posts
Discussion Starter #1
Has anyone else asked themselves this question or found it perplexing, or is it just me?

I feel, to at least make an attempt to remove some of the confusion or difficulty in deciphering a byb from a reputable breeder, why are byb even referred to as breeders? byb or not. As far as I am concerned, and I don't mean to be harsh, but byb are not breeders, there just not. There could be a multitude of reasons that pet owners, breed their pets (lack of knowledge of why it's not the right thing to do, greed :( and so on).

Frankly, I think we (meaning the entire population :), should perhaps stop referring to byb folks as breeders and the title of "Breeder" should only be used and reserved for those who have studied, specialized, showed and all that it takes to make one a responsible reputable breeder.

Just like the title of Doctors for example. There are not Doctors and backyard doctors, and if there are backyard doctors, no one would refer to them as doctors. A person that has not studied medicine and taken the necessary steps to be a doctor, but yet practices and performs acts of a doctor, still is not referred to as a doctor. Does that makes sense? :unsure:

It just disturbs me, that byb folks are even considered breeders, when they are not. If I had bred Mia and Leo (God forbid) :w00t:, would that then make me a breeder, even if it being a back yard breeder? IMO NO, that would make me an irresponsible pet owner, not a breeder.

Breeding is a specialized field, just like any other. Why give that title to those who do not deserve it? Sometimes, I think this small detail adds to the confusion to the unsuspecting new pet owner to be and sadly the reputable breeders somehow get lumped in with them, just doesn't seem right nor does it make any sense to me.

I think it should be:

Breeders - A specialized field, this title only given to those who have taken the necessary steps to earn that title, just like any other specialized filed.

Millers - ugh, we know who they are.

And then the last category would be Irresponsible Pet Owners mating their poor pets, maybe refer to them as IPO's. Oh I don't know.

It would annoy me to no end, if I were a Breeder (one who specializes in this field) to have to be lumped in and share a portion of that title with those who truly do not deserve it, abuse not only the title, but the precious little furbabies. And by abuse I mean, not doing right by their pet.

The title of Breeder really needs to be segragated from those who are doing things very irresponsibly and only used for those who truly have earned that title.

Perhaps, even in the smallest way, this could be a start to distance the responsible, reputable breeders from those who are not breeders at all and alleviate some of the difficulty in deciphering who is who.

Maybe it's just me, but just something that always knawed at me.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
17,659 Posts
Anyone who puts two dogs together to produce puppies is a breeder IMO.

I hear all the time "I don't want to be a breeder, I just want to have one litter of puppies". One litter of puppies still makes you a breeder.

Of course, there are different types of breeders. This is an excellent comparison between backyard and reputable breeders:

Backyard Breeder vs Reputable Breeder
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
7,915 Posts
Discussion Starter #3
Anyone who puts two dogs together to produce puppies is a breeder IMO.

I hear all the time "I don't want to be a breeder, I just want to have one litter of puppies". One litter of puppies still makes you a breeder.

Of course, there are different types of breeders. This is an excellent comparison between backyard and reputable breeders:

Backyard Breeder vs Reputable Breeder
Gosh, Marj, that is an EXCELLENT comparision. Right on point. I still think the byb should not be referred to as breeders, maybe puppy sellers. Just to give back the dignity of the term Breeder, if that makes sense. But I definetly understand your point and love the chart you provided. That's a keeper for sure.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
2,327 Posts
Christine, you have raised some very good points, put out some real food for thought, and opened the door to what could be, and hopefully will be, the opportunity for meaningful discussion and sharing of thoughts without becoming judgmental or, worse yet, hostile. My response is a bit of a stream of consciousness for which I hope I will not be judged, harshly or otherwise.

I think of “breeder” as someone whose purpose/goal is to produce puppies on a go forward basis of a quality that will maintain excellence in the breed and be worthy of contributing to the gene pool in a meaningful way for the future benefit of the breed, whether that be for conformation events, companion events, or performance events. I believe in order to achieve that purpose/goal one must first learn everything currently available to be known about the breed, i.e., breed type, structure, temperament, health, genetics, etc., and learn what makes for a dog worthy to be a part of or the foundation for a solid breeding program. I also feel that to be successful in meeting that purpose/goal one should align themselves with a mentor who has vast experience in their chosen breed. I disagree with those who think that every person who causes a litter of puppies to be born is a breeder. Yes, they have bred a litter and the dictionary says that a breeder is one who has mated a bitch to a dog and has produced a litter of puppies, but like your example with doctors, not every person who cleans a wound or shares some thoughts on a possible cure for an ailment is a doctor.

As for terms like puppymiller, backyard breeder, greeder, pet producer, home breeder, kitchen breeder, hobby breeder, reputable breeder, top tier breeder, show breeder or any other description of one who produces puppies, I feel that these are all subjective terms open to individual interpretation, and they are terms that I find myself using less and less. I tend to use terms like “commercial breeder” (one who mass produces puppies in a commercial environment for the purpose of selling wholesale to a reseller), “volume breeder” (one who produces puppies without much thought or knowledge for what they are breeding, what they are producing, and what the future might hold for the puppies produced, all for the purpose of generating or supplementing income), “pet breeder” (one who breeds their pet to have a litter or two of puppies), and “breeder” (see my thoughts on this in the paragraph above).

Maltese have been a big part of my life for more than 10 years. My first four Maltese, all of whom were spayed/neutered, were dogs I adopted from various rescue organizations. Working with rescue dogs and rescue organizations came next. Now I have some well-bred dogs along with my rescue dogs. Through the years I have developed wonderful relationships with breeders, handlers, trainers, fellow rescuers, and mentors. I’ve been presented with many canine health challenges and have been privileged to have had the opportunity to consult with some very knowledgeable veterinary researchers and geneticists. I’ve trained and/or competed in obedience, agility, conformation, CGC programs and therapy dog programs. I’ve attended numerous health, breeding and training seminars. Less than 2 years ago I bred my first litter, feeling confident that I had done everything I could to educate myself before taking this step and feeling confident that I met all of the very high standards I set for myself in terms of health screening, soundness, breed type and temperament. The only thing I did not do was share my joy publicly on this forum. Why? Because I was terrified that because of the subjectiveness of terms like miller, greeder and backyard breeder I would be thought of as yet another backyard breeder by those who do not know me or my commitment to the health, well-being and future not only of all Maltese and but of all dogs. After much agonizing, last summer I finally admitted that I was a “breeder” only because I sold a puppy to a member of this forum and I did not want her to feel that she could not speak openly about her puppy or where he came from. In closing, I would urge everybody to really give pause before assigning subjective titles to those we do not have absolute fact-based knowledge of.

MaryH
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
4,026 Posts
It's weird that this topic came up because on the dogforums.com, and other large dog breed forums, some reputable breeders do not show their large breed dogs regularly. Instead they get high titles in "working" and "herding" trials because they want they want to better the breed by having them do what they were bred to do but they also do health test on ALL their dogs and puppies, screen the potential owners, ect. Showing is just not the "main" concern. So, if I get a larger breed, its harder to tell if a breeder is reputable or not. For example, with the Alaskan Malamute, many breeders do weight pulling and sledding trials with them. I would mainly I would be looking for a breeder that is breeding responsibily with a "herding" or "working" breed. With a maltese, I would just want to see if they showed or are showing currently and then check their sources and qualifications out.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
7,915 Posts
Discussion Starter #8
Christine, you have raised some very good points, put out some real food for thought, and opened the door to what could be, and hopefully will be, the opportunity for meaningful discussion and sharing of thoughts without becoming judgmental or, worse yet, hostile. My response is a bit of a stream of consciousness for which I hope I will not be judged, harshly or otherwise.

I think of “breeder” as someone whose purpose/goal is to produce puppies on a go forward basis of a quality that will maintain excellence in the breed and be worthy of contributing to the gene pool in a meaningful way for the future benefit of the breed, whether that be for conformation events, companion events, or performance events. I believe in order to achieve that purpose/goal one must first learn everything currently available to be known about the breed, i.e., breed type, structure, temperament, health, genetics, etc., and learn what makes for a dog worthy to be a part of or the foundation for a solid breeding program. I also feel that to be successful in meeting that purpose/goal one should align themselves with a mentor who has vast experience in their chosen breed. I disagree with those who think that every person who causes a litter of puppies to be born is a breeder. Yes, they have bred a litter and the dictionary says that a breeder is one who has mated a bitch to a dog and has produced a litter of puppies, but like your example with doctors, not every person who cleans a wound or shares some thoughts on a possible cure for an ailment is a doctor.

As for terms like puppymiller, backyard breeder, greeder, pet producer, home breeder, kitchen breeder, hobby breeder, reputable breeder, top tier breeder, show breeder or any other description of one who produces puppies, I feel that these are all subjective terms open to individual interpretation, and they are terms that I find myself using less and less. I tend to use terms like “commercial breeder” (one who mass produces puppies in a commercial environment for the purpose of selling wholesale to a reseller), “volume breeder” (one who produces puppies without much thought or knowledge for what they are breeding, what they are producing, and what the future might hold for the puppies produced, all for the purpose of generating or supplementing income), “pet breeder” (one who breeds their pet to have a litter or two of puppies), and “breeder” (see my thoughts on this in the paragraph above).

Maltese have been a big part of my life for more than 10 years. My first four Maltese, all of whom were spayed/neutered, were dogs I adopted from various rescue organizations. Working with rescue dogs and rescue organizations came next. Now I have some well-bred dogs along with my rescue dogs. Through the years I have developed wonderful relationships with breeders, handlers, trainers, fellow rescuers, and mentors. I’ve been presented with many canine health challenges and have been privileged to have had the opportunity to consult with some very knowledgeable veterinary researchers and geneticists. I’ve trained and/or competed in obedience, agility, conformation, CGC programs and therapy dog programs. I’ve attended numerous health, breeding and training seminars. Less than 2 years ago I bred my first litter, feeling confident that I had done everything I could to educate myself before taking this step and feeling confident that I met all of the very high standards I set for myself in terms of health screening, soundness, breed type and temperament. The only thing I did not do was share my joy publicly on this forum. Why? Because I was terrified that because of the subjectiveness of terms like miller, greeder and backyard breeder I would be thought of as yet another backyard breeder by those who do not know me or my commitment to the health, well-being and future not only of all Maltese and but of all dogs. After much agonizing, last summer I finally admitted that I was a “breeder” only because I sold a puppy to a member of this forum and I did not want her to feel that she could not speak openly about her puppy or where he came from. In closing, I would urge everybody to really give pause before assigning subjective titles to those we do not have absolute fact-based knowledge of.

MaryH
Mary, I completely agree with your description of a breeder. And after so much careful study, and with your background, I think it's a shame that you had to feel so hesitant about making the wonderful announcement of being a breeder. But I think that is part of my point, you shouldn't have to have had that concern at all IMO with your background, but yet because of the other terms applied so frequently, to those who are not doing things responsibly, those lingering titles effect those who are breeding for all the right reasons.

Hmmm Marj and JMM still think anyone who breeds, even if only one liter, is still considered a breeder, regardless of their intention. Guess I have to give this more thought :blush: (and I mean that with respect).

When I was born and the doc smacked me on the behind :blink:, he said, you shall be a pet Mommy and a pet Mommy only :) and am thrilled with that role. A breeder I could never be :blush:, but am grateful for those who have what I call, a "calling" to be a responsible breeder to better the breed and keep it alive. Like the Maltese. It's still hard for me to digest calling someone a breeder, who have other intentions (none of which are good). But am always open to learn.

It's not that I want to put lables on those who put two dogs together, produce puppies, just to sell, but the one title really hard to apply to them would be a breeder. To me, it takes away the valuable definition of what a breeder truly is.

I guess it's like parenting in a way, when they say, anyone can produce children, but it doesn't make them a Mom or a Dad. That's sort of my mindset with this whole thing.

Guess I have more thinking to do. Thanks everyone for your input.

As far as millers, sorry, those that mate dogs in horrific conditions without any thought or care to the furbabies, whether that be the Moms, Dads or pups, to me they are millers, and there so much I don't understand about them. Never seen a puppymill, never met a puppymiller, but boy do I have questions for them. My little Leo loves to watch TV. Loves it, and oh boy, when the doggy commercials come on, he perks right up, wags his tail, and starts singing. When the humane society runs their commercials, and shows all those poor babies smooshed in cages, or the little ones with injuries, cats, dogs, Leo sits up, stares, but doesn't make a sound. He just can't fathom what he is seeing, he knows something is not right about it. If a little malt boy going to be two can detect something is so wrong, how can those that are millers, see these things everyday and be so immune to the pain and suffering. It's beyond my comprehension.

Sorry, that was a little off topic, but it's all a part of my thought process. I just hope someday, all the pain and suffering will end, and only Breeders will remain, who breed for the betterment of those breeds under their care.

Thanks again.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
5,653 Posts
Mary, I completely agree with your description of a breeder. And after so much careful study, and with your background, I think it's a shame that you had to feel so hesitant about making the wonderful announcement of being a breeder. But I think that is part of my point, you shouldn't have to have had that concern at all IMO with your background, but yet because of the other terms applied so frequently, to those who are not doing things responsibly, those lingering titles effect those who are breeding for all the right reasons.

Hmmm Marj and JMM still think anyone who breeds, even if only one liter, is still considered a breeder, regardless of their intention. Guess I have to give this more thought :blush: (and I mean that with respect).

When I was born and the doc smacked me on the behind :blink:, he said, you shall be a pet Mommy and a pet Mommy only :) and am thrilled with that role. A breeder I could never be :blush:, but am grateful for those who have what I call, a "calling" to be a responsible breeder to better the breed and keep it alive. Like the Maltese. It's still hard for me to digest calling someone a breeder, who have other intentions (none of which are good). But am always open to learn.

It's not that I want to put lables on those who put two dogs together, produce puppies, just to sell, but the one title really hard to apply to them would be a breeder. To me, it takes away the valuable definition of what a breeder truly is.

I guess it's like parenting in a way, when they say, anyone can produce children, but it doesn't make them a Mom or a Dad. That's sort of my mindset with this whole thing.

Guess I have more thinking to do. Thanks everyone for your input.

As far as millers, sorry, those that mate dogs in horrific conditions without any thought or care to the furbabies, whether that be the Moms, Dads or pups, to me they are millers, and there so much I don't understand about them. Never seen a puppymill, never met a puppymiller, but boy do I have questions for them. My little Leo loves to watch TV. Loves it, and oh boy, when the doggy commercials come on, he perks right up, wags his tail, and starts singing. When the humane society runs their commercials, and shows all those poor babies smooshed in cages, or the little ones with injuries, cats, dogs, Leo sits up, stares, but doesn't make a sound. He just can't fathom what he is seeing, he knows something is not right about it. If a little malt boy going to be two can detect something is so wrong, how can those that are millers, see these things everyday and be so immune to the pain and suffering. It's beyond my comprehension.

Sorry, that was a little off topic, but it's all a part of my thought process. I just hope someday, all the pain and suffering will end, and only Breeders will remain, who breed for the betterment of those breeds under their care.

Thanks again.

i understand what you mean and there should be a thinner line but unfortunately there isnt. You said it yourself anyone can make babies and birth a child but there are alot of ppl out there that shouldnt have the title of mother and father, unfortunately thats what they are whether they r responsible or not.

Now looking at the chart that marj posted i followed everything, i talked to the breeder , i had pictures sent to me , i had a screening , i was explained all about maltese and how if i had small children a maltese might not be for me ,their temperament etc etc .. i was talked about how expensive it is to care for a puppy , i was given a contract , mostly everything on that reputable list and now im not sure if my puppy is from a reputable breeder or a byb , only because the website is from a "broker" even though they call it a placement service and they have more than one breed of puppy ,i got a contract , i had a neuter/spay contract , i was told i could return puppy if i could not take care of it for any reason , everything sounded like they had the pups benefits in mind, the puppy was over 12 weeks , it really didnt feel like they were out to get my money . so it is hard and it is difficult for us newbies to make an informed decision.

a question that has been bugging me ,
how bout if the dog is another breed , of a type of dog that doesnt get shown like lets say a pomeranian. how do u know the breeder is "reputable" . ? its just very confusing, and i just hope that whoever "breeds" puts the mom n dad dog n the puppies into consideration, whether or not they breed in a backyard or in a home etc..

u understand what i mean . ?
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,886 Posts
MaryH, kudos for bravery cuz I realize how you must have struggled with saying what you did before you posted. I am of the belief that anyone who breeds puppies is indeed a breeder. Just my opinion, however. But if anyone gets bent outta shape reading your post, then I say they can just get glad in the same pants they got mad in. :)
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
7,915 Posts
Discussion Starter #11
i understand what you mean and there should be a thinner line but unfortunately there isnt. You said it yourself anyone can make babies and birth a child but there are alot of ppl out there that shouldnt have the title of mother and father, unfortunately thats what they are whether they r responsible or not.

Now looking at the chart that marj posted i followed everything, i talked to the breeder , i had pictures sent to me , i had a screening , i was explained all about maltese and how if i had small children a maltese might not be for me ,their temperament etc etc .. i was talked about how expensive it is to care for a puppy , i was given a contract , mostly everything on that reputable list and now im not sure if my puppy is from a reputable breeder or a byb , only because the website is from a "broker" even though they call it a placement service and they have more than one breed of puppy ,i got a contract , i had a neuter/spay contract , i was told i could return puppy if i could not take care of it for any reason , everything sounded like they had the pups benefits in mind, the puppy was over 12 weeks , it really didnt feel like they were out to get my money . so it is hard and it is difficult for us newbies to make an informed decision.

a question that has been bugging me ,
how bout if the dog is another breed , of a type of dog that doesnt get shown like lets say a pomeranian. how do u know the breeder is "reputable" . ? its just very confusing, and i just hope that whoever "breeds" puts the mom n dad dog n the puppies into consideration, whether or not they breed in a backyard or in a home etc..

u understand what i mean . ?
I do understand what you mean, completely. As far as other breeds, I do think Poms are shown ( I think ), but for those breeds that are not shown, I haven't a clue :(, I've never researched it, but I bet there are members here that would know.
 

·
Premium Member
Joined
·
3,223 Posts
i understand what you mean and there should be a thinner line but unfortunately there isnt. You said it yourself anyone can make babies and birth a child but there are alot of ppl out there that shouldnt have the title of mother and father, unfortunately thats what they are whether they r responsible or not.

Now looking at the chart that marj posted i followed everything, i talked to the breeder , i had pictures sent to me , i had a screening , i was explained all about maltese and how if i had small children a maltese might not be for me ,their temperament etc etc .. i was talked about how expensive it is to care for a puppy , i was given a contract , mostly everything on that reputable list and now im not sure if my puppy is from a reputable breeder or a byb , only because the website is from a "broker" even though they call it a placement service and they have more than one breed of puppy ,i got a contract , i had a neuter/spay contract , i was told i could return puppy if i could not take care of it for any reason , everything sounded like they had the pups benefits in mind, the puppy was over 12 weeks , it really didnt feel like they were out to get my money . so it is hard and it is difficult for us newbies to make an informed decision.

a question that has been bugging me ,
how bout if the dog is another breed , of a type of dog that doesnt get shown like lets say a pomeranian. how do u know the breeder is "reputable" . ? its just very confusing, and i just hope that whoever "breeds" puts the mom n dad dog n the puppies into consideration, whether or not they breed in a backyard or in a home etc..

u understand what i mean . ?
I'm afraid what you said here would answer it for me. I would have no doubts at all that your puppy came from what I would call an unethical breeder. It may have been a BYB/Greeder or a Mill. No breeder I would call reputable or ethical would ever sell or place puppies through a "broker" or a "placement service." Like so many of us when we got our first Maltese it is a lesson learned.

My first Maltese was bred by my neighbor because she wanted a litter or two out of her pet. She wasn't after my money, in fact I got more money out of the deal because she hired me to watch the puppies when they were born, and only charged a nominal fee when I decided I wanted one. She was not a bad person. But she was misguided. She did not have the knowledge she should have before undertaking such a momentous decision. Cloud was bigger than the standard (as was his mom) and developed diabetes (just like his mom and sisters). She had no idea what she was doing when she put those two dogs together. She just knew they had papers. I wouldn't have traded my boy Cloud for anything. He was a wonderful and very well socialized dog (I was the one who had socialized him as a pup :blush: ), but I know now that what she did was not the way to breed dogs.

Now, I just have to ask why you think Pomeranians aren't shown? There are tons of Poms in the rings. Way more than Maltese. My dear friends here in Maryland show and breed beautiful Poms. You should come out to a dog show and see all the wonderful dogs that are in the ring. Nearly every breed the AKC recognizes is usually there. There are a few breeds that have not earned AKC recognition yet, but breeders who care about those breeds work to show them in other venues as well.

As for the debate about performance versus conformation/performance showing, my belief is that ideally a breeder does both. If they do not, then you have to understand what you are going to get. Some breeds have developed two distinct looks for dogs that are bred for performance and for those that are bred to fit the conformation standard. Some people breeding performance dogs are following a kind of performance standard. Again, once you have learned about why it matters that a breeder is involved in showing then you have to determine what is most important to you in a breeder.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
7,915 Posts
Discussion Starter #13
I'm afraid what you said here would answer it for me. I would have no doubts at all that your puppy came from what I would call an unethical breeder. It may have been a BYB/Greeder or a Mill. No breeder I would call reputable or ethical would ever sell or place puppies through a "broker" or a "placement service." Like so many of us when we got our first Maltese it is a lesson learned.

My first Maltese was bred by my neighbor because she wanted a litter or two out of her pet. She wasn't after my money, in fact I got more money out of the deal because she hired me to watch the puppies when they were born, and only charged a nominal fee when I decided I wanted one. She was not a bad person. But she was misguided. She did not have the knowledge she should have before undertaking such a momentous decision. Cloud was bigger than the standard (as was his mom) and developed diabetes (just like his mom and sisters). She had no idea what she was doing when she put those two dogs together. She just knew they had papers. I wouldn't have traded my boy Cloud for anything. He was a wonderful and very well socialized dog (I was the one who had socialized him as a pup :blush: ), but I know now that what she did was not the way to breed dogs.

Now, I just have to ask why you think Pomeranians aren't shown? There are tons of Poms in the rings. Way more than Maltese. My dear friends here in Maryland show and breed beautiful Poms. You should come out to a dog show and see all the wonderful dogs that are in the ring. Nearly every breed the AKC recognizes is usually there. There are a few breeds that have not earned AKC recognition yet, but breeders who care about those breeds work to show them in other venues as well.

As for the debate about performance versus conformation/performance showing, my belief is that ideally a breeder does both. If they do not, then you have to understand what you are going to get. Some breeds have developed two distinct looks for dogs that are bred for performance and for those that are bred to fit the conformation standard. Some people breeding performance dogs are following a kind of performance standard. Again, once you have learned about why it matters that a breeder is involved in showing then you have to determine what is most important to you in a breeder.
Gosh Carina, your story of your first Malt, could be mine with Tina Marie, Kara, and yes my Mia and Leo (tearing up as I write this). Tina Marie's breeder as well as Kara's (two different breeders), were the nicest people hubby and I could have hoped to have met. Everything was perfect, their home, their babies, just like you said, they were "misguided". Lost my baby Tina Marie at 7 (kidney failure, which her Mommy and siblings past from too) and Lost my sweet baby Kara at age 8 (diabeties) and I am telling you, the heartache is wrenching. I think that is why I am so pesky in wanting to keep learning, because I fear so much for my Mia and Leo and hubby and I never want anyone to suffer the pain that we felt and still feel from loosing Tina Marie and Kara both so young. We had our Flakey for 15 glorious years, he was a petstore baby, and our first, but he also was a preicious special needs baby and we miss all 3 dearly. So, I guess that is why I am so pesky to hopefully save others from the heartache, as well as get the word out so that precious furbabies who should not be bred, aren't.

We enjoy every minute with Mia and Leo so much, but it's so hard to shake that underneath worry, once you been down that road, not once but twice.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
462 Posts
IMO, anyone who has a dog that reproduces is a breeder. To call them anything else seems to release them from the responsibility of health testing, screening potentional homes and requiring spay/neuter contracts. "Oh I'm not a breeder, I had this litter just for fun [so I shouldn't have to consider whether my dog is a good example of the breed, know anything about the standard or common health issues in the breed, do any health testing, be there to support you if something goes wrong, etc. Just hand me the cash, take your dog and forget my phone number please]." In many states people avoid calling themselves breeders b/c only "breeders" (usaullly someone that has a certain number of litters and/or dogs for sale a year) are subject to puppy lemon laws and possibly USDA inspection. Those that have one or two small litters a year (or register and sell additional dogs under other names) can get away with selling sick or genetically unsound puppies.

Just about any "real breed" is and can be shown. In addition to the AKC there is the UKC (for coonhounds, American Pit Bull Terriers, parti colored Poodles, etc) and the American Rare Breed Association. All three registries have performance events as well as conformation shows.

I think it's important for any breeder to prove their dogs some way, whether it's in conformation, herding, agility, Schutzhund or something else. However, unless you are looking for a dog to do a job or compete w/, going to a breeder whose dog have working titles may not be the best idea. If you aren't going to do agility w/ your dog then why buy from a breeder who breeds specifically for that? Same goes for herding, Schutzhund and field trials. Many of the dogs that compete in such sports are too much for the averge pet owner to handle. Those buyers are better off w/ purchasing from a conformation and/or obedience breeder. If I ever decide to get another Rottweiler I won't be going to someone who titles their dogs in Sch b/c I have no interest in competing in that sport, nor do I want a dog specifically for protection purposes.

In the end there are responsible breeders and irresponsible breeders and even those or subjective. It's about what's important to you and why. I prefer small scale, show breeders that do all the proper (another subjective term) health testing, keep their dogs in their home and treat them like part of the family.
 

·
Premium Member
Joined
·
4,225 Posts
Christine, you have raised some very good points, put out some real food for thought, and opened the door to what could be, and hopefully will be, the opportunity for meaningful discussion and sharing of thoughts without becoming judgmental or, worse yet, hostile. My response is a bit of a stream of consciousness for which I hope I will not be judged, harshly or otherwise.

I think of “breeder” as someone whose purpose/goal is to produce puppies on a go forward basis of a quality that will maintain excellence in the breed and be worthy of contributing to the gene pool in a meaningful way for the future benefit of the breed, whether that be for conformation events, companion events, or performance events. I believe in order to achieve that purpose/goal one must first learn everything currently available to be known about the breed, i.e., breed type, structure, temperament, health, genetics, etc., and learn what makes for a dog worthy to be a part of or the foundation for a solid breeding program. I also feel that to be successful in meeting that purpose/goal one should align themselves with a mentor who has vast experience in their chosen breed. I disagree with those who think that every person who causes a litter of puppies to be born is a breeder. Yes, they have bred a litter and the dictionary says that a breeder is one who has mated a bitch to a dog and has produced a litter of puppies, but like your example with doctors, not every person who cleans a wound or shares some thoughts on a possible cure for an ailment is a doctor.

As for terms like puppymiller, backyard breeder, greeder, pet producer, home breeder, kitchen breeder, hobby breeder, reputable breeder, top tier breeder, show breeder or any other description of one who produces puppies, I feel that these are all subjective terms open to individual interpretation, and they are terms that I find myself using less and less. I tend to use terms like “commercial breeder” (one who mass produces puppies in a commercial environment for the purpose of selling wholesale to a reseller), “volume breeder” (one who produces puppies without much thought or knowledge for what they are breeding, what they are producing, and what the future might hold for the puppies produced, all for the purpose of generating or supplementing income), “pet breeder” (one who breeds their pet to have a litter or two of puppies), and “breeder” (see my thoughts on this in the paragraph above).

Maltese have been a big part of my life for more than 10 years. My first four Maltese, all of whom were spayed/neutered, were dogs I adopted from various rescue organizations. Working with rescue dogs and rescue organizations came next. Now I have some well-bred dogs along with my rescue dogs. Through the years I have developed wonderful relationships with breeders, handlers, trainers, fellow rescuers, and mentors. I’ve been presented with many canine health challenges and have been privileged to have had the opportunity to consult with some very knowledgeable veterinary researchers and geneticists. I’ve trained and/or competed in obedience, agility, conformation, CGC programs and therapy dog programs. I’ve attended numerous health, breeding and training seminars. Less than 2 years ago I bred my first litter, feeling confident that I had done everything I could to educate myself before taking this step and feeling confident that I met all of the very high standards I set for myself in terms of health screening, soundness, breed type and temperament. The only thing I did not do was share my joy publicly on this forum. Why? Because I was terrified that because of the subjectiveness of terms like miller, greeder and backyard breeder I would be thought of as yet another backyard breeder by those who do not know me or my commitment to the health, well-being and future not only of all Maltese and but of all dogs. After much agonizing, last summer I finally admitted that I was a “breeder” only because I sold a puppy to a member of this forum and I did not want her to feel that she could not speak openly about her puppy or where he came from. In closing, I would urge everybody to really give pause before assigning subjective titles to those we do not have absolute fact-based knowledge of.

MaryH
:ThankYou::goodpost:
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
2,327 Posts
I think it's important for any breeder to prove their dogs some way, whether it's in conformation, herding, agility, Schutzhund or something else. However, unless you are looking for a dog to do a job or compete w/, going to a breeder whose dog have working titles may not be the best idea. If you aren't going to do agility w/ your dog then why buy from a breeder who breeds specifically for that? Same goes for herding, Schutzhund and field trials. Many of the dogs that compete in such sports are too much for the averge pet owner to handle. Those buyers are better off w/ purchasing from a conformation and/or obedience breeder. If I ever decide to get another Rottweiler I won't be going to someone who titles their dogs in Sch b/c I have no interest in competing in that sport, nor do I want a dog specifically for protection purposes.

In the end there are responsible breeders and irresponsible breeders and even those or subjective. It's about what's important to you and why. I prefer small scale, show breeders that do all the proper (another subjective term) health testing, keep their dogs in their home and treat them like part of the family.

I agree with a lot of what you have said. But I would not cross performance breeders off my list just because I might be looking for a companion and had no desire to participate in performance sports. The breeders who I know who are breeding performance dogs are looking first and foremost for physical and mental soundness and that would be of utmost importance to me when looking for a family pet. Because a German Shepherd puppy's parents are Schutzhund trained doesn't mean the puppy is going to grow up with a desire to scale walls, just like a Siberian Husky puppy whose parents are sled dogs isn't going to grow up wanting to drag the lawn mower around the yard in lieu of a sled ... although if I could get one that would I might consider a Husky for my next breed! They are puppies that will most likely have the physical and mental stamina to perform those tasks should the owner have a desire to train in those venues. Now taking in an adult dog who has been raised and trained for performance events is not something I would recommend for everybody. They should be placed with people familiar with performance dogs.

MaryH
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
7,915 Posts
Discussion Starter #17
MaryH, kudos for bravery cuz I realize how you must have struggled with saying what you did before you posted. I am of the belief that anyone who breeds puppies is indeed a breeder. Just my opinion, however. But if anyone gets bent outta shape reading your post, then I say they can just get glad in the same pants they got mad in. :)
Why in the world would anyone get upset at Mary for her post? Makes no sense to me. Guess I've been away to long. There was nothing wrong with Mary's post at all, actually it was quite infomrative, as many of her post are, in my opinion.

Well, seems I'm the only one that feels the way I do, and I thank you all very much for your input and completely respect your thougths.

I want to be completely clear, when I initiated this thread, I was moreseo thinking of those that breed dogs in awful conditions, whether they breed in puppymill homes, or commercial puppy mills. I really wasn't so much thinking of those misguided byb breeders, or those who breed by the standard but don't show, but moreso those that breed in horrific conditions, at the cost of the furbabies they breed and their puppies they produce. I still can't stomach the fact to refer to them as breeders. But that's just me.

I only started posting on SM for a couple of reasons, hoping that some of my past difficult experiences can help others, to continue to learn so in results in my being a better informed Mommy for Mia and Leo, and I also have plans for the future (no not breeding), as I feel we have a huge problem on our hands in additon to byb's and those that may not show, but breed within the standard and is done with the appropriate knowledge and the prority is he health and care for all of those dogs in their care. Not saying I agree or disagree with this, but my main focus is those that breed as I said without any thought or care to the dogs or puppies they produce. I know I am so in the minority on this, but I still can't stomach referring to them as breeders, honestly, I barely consider them human let alone breeders.

My vet is always my first line of information, guidance and knowledge, but I do not interact with the vet on a day to day basis, and SM was always my source of knowledge, for which I am very grateful for. As I have stated before, and this is not an overstatement, I get a gazillion questions almost daily, about dogs, where to get them, and all that goes with being a responsible pet owner. Because I have a huge passion for animals, doesn't make me completely knoweldgeable and just want to make sure I advise appropriately, and as I stated previously, my vet is an aweseome source of knoweldge, but in the past SM has always been there on a daily basis.

Sharing my past stories about my Kara and Tina Marie, believe you me, brought all the pain back. Just hope someday it helps someone else avoid that pain.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
2,327 Posts
I want to be completely clear, when I initiated this thread, I was moreseo thinking of those that breed dogs in awful conditions, whether they breed in puppymill homes, or commercial puppy mills. I really wasn't so much thinking of those misguided byb breeders, or those who breed by the standard but don't show, but moreso those that breed in horrific conditions, at the cost of the furbabies they breed and their puppies they produce. I still can't stomach the fact to refer to them as breeders. But that's just me.
I am 100% in agreement with you, Christine. When I think of what a breeder is I do not think in the literal sense (according to what the dictionary says) that anyone who produces even a single litter is a breeder. And, honestly, despite what the dictionary says, I believe that the majority of the general public when they hear the term "breeder" think of someone who, with much knowledge, planning and careful consideration, is producing puppies in their home on an ongoing basis, not someone producing hundreds in a barn OR someone breeding their two pets to produce just one litter ever. And that's why it bothers me that those who are mass producing puppies in a barn or producing one litter from their pets are also thought of as breeders.

MaryH
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
7,915 Posts
Discussion Starter #19
I am 100% in agreement with you, Christine. When I think of what a breeder is I do not think in the literal sense (according to what the dictionary says) that anyone who produces even a single litter is a breeder. And, honestly, despite what the dictionary says, I believe that the majority of the general public when they hear the term "breeder" think of someone who, with much knowledge, planning and careful consideration, is producing puppies in their home on an ongoing basis, not someone producing hundreds in a barn OR someone breeding their two pets to produce just one litter ever. And that's why it bothers me that those who are mass producing puppies in a barn or producing one litter from their pets are also thought of as breeders.

MaryH
Mary,

Bless your heart. I thought I was loosing my mind. Thank you for the reassurance (again ) :)
 

·
Premium Member
Joined
·
4,225 Posts
Well, seems I'm the only one that feels the way I do, and I thank you all very much for your input and completely respect your thougths.

I want to be completely clear, when I initiated this thread, I was more so thinking of those that breed dogs in awful conditions, whether they breed in puppymill homes, or commercial puppy mills. I really wasn't so much thinking of those misguided byb breeders, or those who breed by the standard but don't show, but more so those that breed in horrific conditions, at the cost of the furbabies they breed and their puppies they produce. I still can't stomach the fact to refer to them as breeders. But that's just me.

I only started posting on SM for a couple of reasons, hoping that some of my past difficult experiences can help others, to continue to learn so in results in my being a better informed Mommy for Mia and Leo, and I also have plans for the future (no not breeding), as I feel we have a huge problem on our hands in additon to byb's and those that may not show, but breed within the standard and is done with the appropriate knowledge and the prority is he health and care for all of those dogs in their care. Not saying I agree or disagree with this, but my main focus is those that breed as I said without any thought or care to the dogs or puppies they produce. I know I am so in the minority on this, but I still can't stomach referring to them as breeders, honestly, I barely consider them human let alone breeders.

My vet is always my first line of information, guidance and knowledge, but I do not interact with the vet on a day to day basis, and SM was always my source of knowledge, for which I am very grateful for. As I have stated before, and this is not an overstatement, I get a gazillion questions almost daily, about dogs, where to get them, and all that goes with being a responsible pet owner. Because I have a huge passion for animals, doesn't make me completely knoweldgeable and just want to make sure I advise appropriately, and as I stated previously, my vet is an aweseome source of knoweldge, but in the past SM has always been there on a daily basis.

Sharing my past stories about my Kara and Tina Marie, believe you me, brought all the pain back. Just hope someday it helps someone else avoid that pain.
You have a lot of compassion for your dogs and animals in general. It is hard to go to a commercial breeder's place and not react to these dogs not having what we consider basic emotional care. Sitting in a cage all day and not being let out into a yard or giving them hugs and kisses.
There are some really good breeders in the US that do not show their dogs. Wouldn't even know how to go about it. They are very consenscious about health care and improving their own lines. I've seen some beautiful dogs from people who do not have the means to show. I would rather put money back into the health of my dogs than worry about taking them into the show ring if I had to choose. Other's have made that decision. I have to respect people who do this. everyone has their opinion of what all those "terms" mean.
Some commercial breeders do more health testing than smaller breeders. They DNA to prove parentage. They employ their own veterinarians for health care. They keep their facilities spotless. Then you have some commercial breeders that are horrible. Barely keep up with cleaning and don't give a heck for the dogs health. Just give me those puppies. And it is hard to stomach seeing those places. Your educating people about all this is wonderful. The more educated people are the better choices they can make. I am one who is glad you do it. Even through your pain.
 
1 - 20 of 25 Posts
Top