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Making the right decision when choosing a breeder.

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I am mulling the choices involved in choosing a puppy, my husband would be happy to get another rescue and as the dog will be my agility partner is completly staying out of it so he is useless to bounce ideas of.

I have never got a puppy from a breeder before so actually making a thoughtful decision about which dog to get is proving to be rather nerve racking, never thought this would be stressful

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I've always had rescues that I chose or that chose me.

For my 1 purchase (so far), I let the breeder chose, based on several phone conversations and an emailed wish list that prioritized wants, needs, and deal breakers

It was a long distance deal and the pup was shipped. I had debated picking the pup up in person but feared that emotions would get in the way.

The pup grew up into the exact dog that I asked for.

I could not be happier.

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Have you seen Britta's post about Rook on the Killiebrae fb page? End of Feb. How he wasn't what she thought she wanted but she took Rachel's advice.


It's difficult making a decision when you have high expectations, or hopes at least. With a rescue you sort of take what you see and keep your fingers crossed. When buying there is the feeling that we should be more in control of the outcome but in reality they're still dogs and there are no guarantees.


Sometimes not having a choice is easier. When I went to see Risk for the first time I was faced with a whole litter all looking almost the same and behaving identically. Fortunately only two were available and I chose him because he was smooth coated which I prefer. If I'd had the pick of the litter I'd probably have always wondered if I'd made the right choice.

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If you've done the ground work of finding a reputable breeder (which it sounds like you have) then I really do think you can trust them to pick out the pup that is best for you based on your stated needs/desires in a pup. Or if allowed to choose, pick the pup that "speaks" to you, even if just from photos. You've got a good breeder, a nicely planned litter and I bet you can't go wrong.


Of the last three dogs I've gotten, two were chosen by the breeder based on what I planned to do with the pup and characteristics desired. The third and most recent, Rook, was the last male left and I was sure I wanted a male so that made the decision easy. All three were long distance arrangements. The first two were exactly what I "asked for" and the the third is just the perfect pup for our family.


Take a deep breath and go for it :)


Looking forward to puppy photos!

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Are you only planning on participating in agility with your new dog/pup? Or is herding potentially in your future? If it is only agility, I strongly believe that a well-bred dog can be molded into an awesome agility dog. Take, for example, Silvia Trkman, who I understand has 3 or 4 dogs that were the left-over pup in their litter. And by well-bred, for this example, I mean a pup who has good structure and has a pleasant personality with a good bit of play drive (but not psychotic). A rescue dog could fit this description.


If you are going to participate in herding, I think you should be careful to consider the herding background of the parents along with the structure and personality qualifications.


If you are buying, I am in agreement with others who have responded with - let the breeder pick the pup. I don't think a pre-visit will clear up any issues, and may confuse you even more as mum24dog pointed out. Definitely have a detailed conversation (via phone or email) to describe what you are looking for, but realize that you are never going to get EXACTLY everything. And to repeat myself, you can mold the pup into your idea of an ideal dog.


Both of my dogs have been chosen by the breeder. Since I was higher on the 'pick list' for the younger one, I think I got a pup more closely aligned with the attributes I said I wanted. [don't forget that the puppy evaluations are done at 7-8 weeks old, so a lot can change as they mature.) For my older dog, I have a feeling that I happened to have my name on the breeder's long list of puppy buyers (yeah, she was a high volume breeder, but I had not discovered the BC Boards at that time), other people had passed on the pup for various reasons, and she just went down her list to the next available buyer until she came to my name. Regardless, I have been thrilled with him.


I have no problem with someone wanting a 'pretty' dog (coloring, size, structure, whatever), but I also ascribe to the philosophy that the working ability trumps appearance. You are the one who has to feed, shelter, train and provide major medical to your dog. Get the dog you want regardless of what people whisper behind their hands. [That is my old lady personality coming out. I feel that as I age, I worry less about what others think.]


Good Luck. Also looking forward to puppy pics.

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My litter is 7 weeks old and I am having a hard time choosing despite knowing each pup intimately. I think it's easier to let a trusted breeder choose. I kind of wish someone would come over and pick my pup for me!


Choose the lines and the breeder based on your wants/needs in a dog. Have them help you decide which pup from an individual litter will fit you best.


Don't choose based on color. If I did that, I would not have the dogs/lines I do. Years ago I had a drop dead gorgeous chocolate smooth coat with almost no white and striking hazel eyes. We were like oil and water, but man was she lovely to look at! She really drove home for me the importance of work style and personality over looks.

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It's actually not picking the puppy that has me concerned, it's picking the breeder I am confident that with a good breeder I will get a good pup. I am pretty sure I am going to go with the breeder of Mum24dog's dog. I just have to make a final decision between 2 solid breeders. As I want a dog not a bitch, it seems to be easier to find a puppy from a good working breeder, looks like most people want a bitch.


GCV-border this will be my first time not getting a rescue dog, my husband would have been very happy to give a home to another homeless border collie, but this time I wanted to get a dog from a good breeder, I have been advocating working bred sheepdogs over sport and especially show lines for so long that I want one of my own! The primary reason is I wanted a puppy not a young adult or teenager, I really enjoyed having Rievaulx as a puppy and all things I got to teach him when he was little. With a rescue puppy it is complete gamble, with R he is everything I could have wanted in a partner, but he has mild hip dysplasia and I now have to work hard to keep him in really good shape so he can be as active as he wants to be with no discomfort, he has 2 physiotherapists! We will continue to foster and do our bit.

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Dear Doggers,


When reading Outrun Press's Top Trainers Talk Aboyut Starting a Stockdog I was struck by how often the famous dogs these trainers worked with were chosen neither by Juju nor the careful application of principles but simply because all the other pups in the litter had been picked.


Over the years I have seen so many relatively talentless Border Collies go in to great things because their first time Border Collie owners put so much time and attention into them.


Donald McCaig

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I wouldn't say that you should be confident of getting a good pup from a good breeder, just that you will increase your chances that the pup will turn out well.


Even a repeat mating isn't guaranteed to produce the same results.


You are the most important factor in what your pup becomes but good raw material helps.

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