Selecting Your Breeder

You've Talked to the rest NOW work with the best!

I realize you have options available as to which breeder and what breed you decide to share your life with.  Since we are “second generation” dog fanciers as our parents show and breed purebred Champion dogs, we decided to share what we have learned over the years.  The below questions will help guide you in making one of the most important decisions.  Selecting a breeder means sharing your lifelong journey of whatever breed you desire with your breeder and new puppy. 

How many dogs on premises?

ARC Beaucerons has eight Beaucerons and one Anatolian Shepherd.

*This question is important to know if your prospective breeder is a specialist within their breed or a commercial breeder.

How many litters per year do you breed?

“ARC” breeds 2-3 litters per year.  We start planning our litters almost a year in advance to make sure the male and female compliment each other in health, conformation and working abilities.

*This question is important to determine if your prospective breeder is a specialist within their breed or a commercial breeder.

What health testing is completed on the parents?

 “ARC” tests our males cardiac, eyes, hips and elbows.  Our females have hip and elbow certification from the Orthopedic Foundation for Animals.

*This question is important because you want the healthiest dog possible.

Do the parents have obedience and protection abilities or primarily conformation titles?

“ARC” believes that all breeding dogs should have a AKC Canine Good Citizen title which means that that dog is a proud and good canine.  While most of our dogs do have a Champion title, we also make sure the dogs have a rally or obedience title as well.  We also work our dogs in personal protection to make sure the dogs are strong and confident in character.

*This question is important because a dog that is primarily a conformation dog may tend to be shy or soft in character or a dog from primarily a working pedigree may be too much power for an average household.  It’s important to select a dog that is balanced.

Please explain the pedigree of your dogs and is there any line breeding or inbreeding.

“ARC” has selected dogs from around the world which compliment each other.  We make sure every breeding will improve and create an even better dog.  We don’t have any inbreeding and we also don’t believe in line breeding.  Our pedigrees are listed on every dog’s web page.  We have spent a lot of time and money to make sure our pedigrees are pure and rich.

*This is important because many breeders feel line breeding (which means male and female have the same gene in the pedigree) is acceptable because it isn’t actually inbreeding.  I know many owners that don’t know their puppies’ pedigree and actually have a dog that is from line breeding multiple times. 

Why are your dogs different from other breeders?

“ARC’s” dogs are simply better due to health and overall betterment of the breed.  We only select dogs for breeding that are exemplary in health, conformation and working abilities.  Our dogs are very complete in character as our pedigrees are unique and researched beyond belief!

*This is important so you can understand the preference each breeder has in regards to the breed with look, pedigree, character and health.

What do you feed your dogs?

 “ARC” feeds Wellness brand "Whitefish and Potato.

*This is important because a good quality food can give you insight to the dog’s health and also shows the importance a breeder places on nutrition.  If a breeder feeds a cheap, low grade food than they don’t have the dogs health in mind.

What care do you give the mother and her puppies?

“ARC” spoils and treats our mothers like Queens.  The mother of the puppies has an important job to provide nutrients, care and mental stimulation to her puppies.  We cook chop meat, eggs, cheese and chicken to mix in their regular dog food.  Our mothers receive four meals throughout the day.  Our puppies get weigh twice a day so we can monitor there growth during the first two weeks.  We start weighing them once a day when the puppies turn three weeks of age.

*This is important because a breeder should place high importance on making sure the mother and puppies are healthy during this process.  It also demonstrates care and passion that a breeder does or doesn't display towards the animals.

What care do you give the dogs prior to breeding?

“ARC” makes sure we are only breeding the healthiest dog possible.  We do a blood test, urine and fecal test two months prior to the breeding.  This testing is done along with regular routine vet checks during the year.

*This is important because if the mom and dad aren't healthy than they shouldn't be bred.  It shows a breeder taking health to the next level.

Do you have “pick puppies” or how do you determine which puppy goes to each home?

“ARC” does temperament testing on our puppies at day 49.  It’s a test that is conducted by a strange person in a strange location.  The test has several stages which allow us to fully understand the character of the puppy and which lifestyle the puppy would best fit into.  It allows us to know which puppy enjoys kids, active families, older couples, working homes and so on.  We don’t have a “pick” puppy as each puppy is evaluated on character.  If you are the last deposit it doesn’t mean you get the last pick.

*This is important because a breeder spends all day and night with the puppies and we know them better than anybody.  It wouldn’t be wise to place a puppy with a strong character in a family with young children.

If I can’t afford the puppy…will the breeder take the puppy back?

“ARC” has this written in our health guarantee that in the event you can’t care for the puppy we will take the dog back at anytime.  No questions asked…our puppies always have a home with us.

*This is important because a reputable breeder should address this issue because it happens often that a family can’t care for an animal. 

How do you keep your house free from germs and bacteria with dogs?

“ARC” takes germs and bacteria very serious.  We steam clean our floors a minimum of three times a week along with disinfecting our house during weekly cleaning.  Our doggie room is cleaned once a week with a pressure washer using the same solution that a vet clinic uses for cleaning.  We also spay our yard once a month with this solution just incase any bacteria or germs are present.

*This is important because YOU should want your puppy coming from a clean household.  You are after all paying for the puppy and should want the best possible.

When you see pictures of the puppies, are they in a clean house or outside in dirt?

Our puppies live next to our bed during the first three weeks.  This way we can assist them and the mother.  Afterwards, they move into the living room so they get used to sounds and activity which a normal household would have.

*This is important because if a puppy is left in a kennel or outside how would they receive proper care?  How would the puppy mentally be stimulated?

What age do you give puppies vaccinations?

“ARC” gives vaccinations when the puppies are 6 weeks of age.  The puppies go to the vet office for an examine as well.

*This is important because as an owner you will need to know vaccinations, worming dates and general health of the puppy during the first eight weeks.

Do you give heartguard and flea prevention?

Yes, we give monthly heartguard and flea prevention.

*This is important for the overall health of the dog.

What mental stimulation do you give your puppies?

“ARC” takes mental stimulation very serious.  Our puppies start learning about sounds, surfaces, problem solving, new people and new places during the entire eight weeks they are with us.  We prepare them for the stress of a flight in cargo so it’s not such a scary trip.

*This is important because a breeder should be teaching the puppies about life so they are prepared to leave and enter their new family.

How much is flying in cargo?

The flight in cargo is usually between $200 - $385.00.  “ARC” will work with you to find the cheapest, direct flight when the puppies are seven weeks of age.  We also encourage people to drive and pick up their puppies as well.  We offer our guestroom to you so you can get a good nights rest before you travel home.  You can also fly with the puppy in the cabin as well.  That is the least stressful for the puppy.

*This is important because a breeder should be familiar with the cost of travel.

Can you deliver the puppy?

“ARC” does provide a service that we will fly with the puppy and deliver the puppy to your airport for you.  We request you pay for our flight, puppies ticket and $15.00 per hour.

*This is important because it demonstrates our love for each puppy.  We are willing to fly with the puppy so they are safe and in our care during the entire trip.

Did your breeder request information about you, your family, lifestyle, interest and other animals in the house?

“ARC” request that we know how many kids and what ages if any children will be around the dog.  We ask about your other animals and their personalities so we can make sure your new puppy compliments your other animals.  We also ask about your lifestyle so we can make sure the puppy fits comfortably into your family.

*This is important because a breeder should want to know more about you in order to match your personality to the puppy best suited for you.  It’s also important to make sure this breed is a good fit for your household as well.