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Wanting to buy a mixed breed puppy

Discussion in 'Dog Chat' started by Bobby D, Jan 14, 2022.


  1. Bobby D

    Bobby D PetForums Newbie

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    Hi Forum, first post here.

    I just wanted to discuss the ethics of wanting to buy a mixed breed pup.

    Between us my partner and I have owned 3 wonderful rescue dogs through our adult lives. All mixed breeds, adorable, and challenging in their own different ways.

    Our current dog we got from a local rescue from an unwanted litter of puppies. We don't know exactly what the first few weeks of his life was like, but he is reactive to people which we manage.

    Now he's 4 we'd like to get him a buddy but for the first time we'd like the experience of getting a puppy from a trusted breeder, where we know exactly what their early experiences are and who the dogs parents are, but, neither of us are interested in getting any one particular breed of dog or paying for a "designer" dog. We love dogs that are a bit of this/and a bit of that, provided the parents in this case are healthy, have good temperaments etc.

    It seems to me the outlets for these kinds of breeders are only the free sites like gumtree, where it's hard to navigate the trustworthy-ness of the sellers.

    To put it shortly, where does one go to find a reputable breeder, but who isn't specialising in pure breed or designer dogs? Thanks
     
  2. ShibaPup

    ShibaPup PetForums VIP

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    Good breeders - breed for a purpose typically a mixture of health, temperament, preservation of a breed, shows and for work/sports.

    Without those goals, without contributing to the future generations - why are people going to spend hundreds to health test two random dogs? They don't.

    Breeding mixes without purpose - doesn't contribute to anything, it isn't going to create a breed, you aren't going to improve the health and temperament can be a bit of an unknown with first crosses because you don't know which breed traits a puppy will inherit and every puppy in the litter will be different. Which is why we have breeds - stack the odds in our favour for traits, physical build, coat type, temperament etc...

    There are good breeders, who health test and do breed crosses but they are typically aimed at sport work - agility, bite sports, working trials etc... typically both parents have had relevant health tests for their breed but also excelled in the sport. So they aren't likely to be a dog that will be suitable for your average family pet home, they are going to be active and want a job to do. Some puppies in the litter may be suited to a family home but you typically need to be involved with the sports already to find out about these litters.

    People having puppies because they can - zero health tests, zero thought to temperament, just use the nearest opposite sex dog available and it's often simply a money maker for these people. They shouldn't be supported.

    My advice either consider a breed - or rehome from a good rescue, plenty of dogs in rescue and plenty of variety, a good rescue will also help match the most suitable dog for your household.
     
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  3. Lurcherlad

    Lurcherlad PetForums VIP

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    As above … very few cross bred dogs come from health tested parents.

    Rescues are full of young Lockdown dogs that have been dumped now the novelty has worn off.
     
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  4. Bobby D

    Bobby D PetForums Newbie

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    Thanks for the replies.

    Yes I totally understand, and I think you're post confirms my point. Reputable breeders are breeding for specific traits, some of which happen make a dog a good family pet (temperament, health), and many of those traits will be for specific working/sports etc that we aren't necessary interesting in.

    We advocate rescuing dogs, and have done with our previous pets, but for our next dog we were considering getting a puppy to ensure we know it's history from day one. Early experiences in dogs can cause behavioural problems later in life, which may not present when you first rescue them, and by the time you've fallen in love with them you may find that you're managing a reactive dog. We've had this experience, and this time would like to heighten our chances of having a non-reactive pet.

    I think you're point is that if we want that experience, then we simply need to pick a breed known for being good pets, despite that fact that all pure breeds will be bread to have traits we aren't interested in, which is what I suspected!
     
  5. Magyarmum

    Magyarmum PetForums VIP

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    I live in Hungary so I'm not quite sure whether it will be the same in the UK as it is over here. Most of the rescues over here have websites and FB pages where they normally list all the dogs available for adoption. There are always plenty of mixed breed puppies although they might not be in a shelter near to where you live. A google search should give you a list of rescues/shelters in the UK.

    Just a thought.
     
  6. Gemmaa

    Gemmaa PetForums VIP

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    To be fair, you could end up with a cross breed that has traits you don't want, and having a puppy doesn't guarantee it won't be reactive.

    I, very sadly, live next to two Labrapoops and they are just absolutely awful. But I could basically guarantee that a well bred Labrador or Poodle would be far better and easier to live with for everyone, especially if trained & exercised properly.
     
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  7. SusieRainbow

    SusieRainbow Moderator
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    I have a retired breeding dog from an excellent ethical breeder so know her history from day one. We got her at 4 years old, she's now almost 12. Even with her good breeding from 2 dogs with good health tests, pediigrees and temperaments she is fear reactive and requires careful managment when out of the house.
    It's hard work but she's so loving with us and friendly towards visitors once she's sussed them out.
    There are no guarantees that, wherever they come from, puppies will grow up with minimal reactivity. Some breeds have a genetic trait for reactivity and intolerance, if you don't know the parental background of a mixed breed pup you're potentially buying an unknown quantity.
     
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  8. Twiggy

    Twiggy PetForums VIP

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    There are a few cross breed dogs that have been bred for a purpose by health tested parents (competitive obedience, agility, etc.) but very few and far between. They are usually collies crossed with GSDs, poodles, working cockers, labs.
     
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  9. Bobby D

    Bobby D PetForums Newbie

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    Yes I think everyone is agreeing with me here. There is no guarantee of not having a reactive dog no matter what it's background, but one way of diminishing those chances is knowing what the parents temperaments are, and what the breeding environment was like from day one, whether it's a mixed breed or not. The ethical way to do this is by picking a breed and going to a reputable breeder.
     
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  10. simplysardonic

    simplysardonic Moderator
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    This doesn't really make sense, if you're looking for a mixed breed dog!

    The only decent breeders of mixes I've seen are breeding sport or working dogs, not crossing breeds just for the sake of it, not all those puppies will have the right drive & make the cut, those are the ones a good breeder, one who knows their dogs & the lines, would be able to recognise as they grow & find suitable pet homes for.
     
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  11. Bobby D

    Bobby D PetForums Newbie

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    ...I suppose to give a scenario, there may be a family who have two amazing rescue dogs who are both mixed breed. They have excellent temperaments and are perfect family pets, but it's not considered good ethics to breed from those dogs even if the family know what they are doing, so for people like myself who might consider a puppy from a litter like this, my only option is to pick a pure breed and go to a KC registered dog breeder, who will be breeding puppies for particular historical traits such as hunting and sports.
     
  12. edinoodle

    edinoodle PetForums Member

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    The scenario you talk about isn't ethical like you said though, both parents should be health test and ideally parentage known to avoid other health issues. Most people think their dog has a lovely personality but that isn't a good enough reason to breed. There are a lot of purebred/pedigree breeds out there that are family pets though, it's just a case of finding a breed that works for you and vice versa
     
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  13. Bobby D

    Bobby D PetForums Newbie

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    Sure I understand. I still think everyone is clarifying my point, essentially there's no pure breed dog bred specifically to be a good companion, or am I wrong? If I want a dog from a line of health checked animals it's got to be one of the pure breeds, or a handful of very specific designer dogs, that are ultimately bred for historical hunting or sports reasons, despite the fact I'm not interested in many of those traits, I need to pick one. Although I'm quite happy to have a medium sized dog that looks like no specific breed, so long as it's healthy and non-reactive etc, I need to pick a breed.
     
  14. Blitz

    Blitz PetForums VIP

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    If you are really wanting a good old mongrel you might be lucky and someone local might have an accidental litter and actually rear them well. You would still not know how they were going to turn out though
     
  15. Siskin

    Siskin Look into my eyes....

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    When I bought my current dog I visited breeders and assessed their dogs for temperament and spoke to the breeder whether they were breeding not only for good health but for good temperament. Generally those breeders that show their dogs need dogs that do have a sound temperament especially in the show ring as they will be surrounded by strange dogs and will have a strange person (the judge) who will handle them. The dog needs to stand still and not react or it will be marked down or even disqualified.
    Because so many people have been randomly breeding their dogs with practically anything in order to give it a cute name, temperament has been the last thing on their mind. Consequently there does seem to have been a rise in reactive dogs although lockdowns etc haven’t helped in socialising a dog properly.
     
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  16. JoanneF

    JoanneF PetForums VIP

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    I think there are. We even refer to some breeds as companion breeds although to the best of my knowledge it isn’t recognised as a designation like utility, pastoral etc.

    Are you looking for suggestions? If so, perhaps you could say what sort of size, exercise needs, grooming needs you are looking for.
     
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  17. O2.0

    O2.0 PetForums VIP

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    Behavior is both genetic and environmental. Nature v. nurture :)
    I have taken on our share of rescue dogs over the years and most had lovely stable temperaments so their behavioral issues were easily sorted.
    I've worked with and known enough purposefully bred dogs with inherent temperament issues to not assume a perfect upbringing guarantees anything if the breeder isn't paying attention to temperament. Particularly resilience. Too many dogs lose it after one bad experience and good breeding should produce dogs who can handle adverse experiences without lifelong problems.

    No it's not good ethics but more importantly it's not intelligent breeding practices.
    When you breed two dogs, you're not just breeding those two dogs, you're breeding all the dogs who are behind them too. Without knowing the lines and what the grandparents and great grandparents were like, you really don't know what might be lurking in the genes. Two lovely dogs with unknown backgrounds can produce a litter of a mess of temperament and health issues.

    Any companion breed is meant to be a pet. Breeders who are producing for the breed ring and for a job are choosing mainly traits that also make for excellent pet dogs. A dog who's going to excel in the breed ring needs to not only be correct and healthy, but should also have a lovely temperament and tolerate being handled by strangers, having to perform in extremely distracting situations and have the resilience to handle the hustle and bustle of a show ring, travel, strange new places... That all translates in to a lovely pet dog too :)
     
  18. simplysardonic

    simplysardonic Moderator
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    I would say that anyone who has adopted a dog of unknown background, no matter how nice that dog is, & then bred them would not be considered ethical, & potentially in breach of a contract if they got them from a reputable rescue.
     
  19. Emlar

    Emlar PetForums Senior

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    I think everyone is agreeing with the OP to an extent. But I don't think all breeds are bred for hunting/sport/agility etc. I'm sure there are some that are bred as lovely companion dogs who make great family pets.

    Others who see much more knowledgeable about breeds will be able to point you in the right direction for breeds to start with :)
     
  20. Bobby D

    Bobby D PetForums Newbie

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    Thanks for the replies everyone. Yes I agree! I think we are all kind of saying the same thing.

    Our current rescue is great for us in every way except his reactiveness. Although it's unknown he's closest to a kind of Sheltie x Terrier, small to medium sized, his coat isn't as long as a sheltie so while he needs a daily brush his grooming needs aren't quite what a pure sheltie would be. He has the collie type intelligence, loves games, cuddles, and being with us, he doesn't shed much. I think the way I came to starting this thread was from thinking, maybe for our second dog it's time to get a 'real' Sheltie, but then I read about all these breed specific traits, such as the coat and colouring etc that I'm just not bothered about.

    So then I start looking at the various terriers etc, and again there's all these KC characteristics that just aren't a priority to me. That's all i'm saying. I like that our current dog is a mix, and would be happy with that again, but I'd also like to heighten our chances of having a less reactive dog, of which the first few weeks of a puppies life have been shown to be critical in, as well as their genetics, which is why we're moving towards getting a puppy for the first time, and so we're back to looking for KC registered breeders. There's not a lot in between really!
     
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