Lately a few of you may have noticed I have been recycling some of my older blogs because I have been sick with a nasty flu bug. Thanks to the miracle of modern medicine I have been given anti-biotics and am on the way to recovery.
So, now that my brain is back in some semblance of working order, I would like to talk to you today about backyard breeding, and why it is something you should “just say no” to.
Why is it when the economy takes a downturn those in precarious financial positions look at the unfixed female dog in their home and think “Ca-ching! I will solve my financial woes by breeding my dog!”
Now the most obvious problem we see here is this. The family dog should be fixed, she should have been fixed at six months. After all she is the family pet, and spaying her is the responsible thing to do. Secondly, it is not your dogs job to repopulate your bank account! Thirdly, (and I am sure you were wondering when I would get to this) there are enough animals without home in our society already. What makes you think that YOUR dog’s offspring is going to find homes when so many others can’t?
Okay so all that aside, let’s look at why breeding your family pet is not going to dig you out of that financial hole you have managed to stumble into.
Dog breeding is not a money-making proposition if done correctly. Health care and shots, diagnosis of problems and proof of quality, extra food, facilities, stud fees, advertising, etc, are all costly and must be paid before the pups can be sold. An unexpected caesarean or emergency intensive care for a sick pup will make a break-even litter become a big liability. And this is all assuming you can sell the pups.
Who do you expect will buy the pups? Do you think they will be snapped up simply because you advertise?
First time breeders have no reputation and no referrals to help them find buyers. Previous promises of “I want a dog just like yours” evaporate. Consider the time and expense of caring for pups that may not sell until four months, eight months or older! What would you do if your pups did not sell? Send them to the pound? Dump them in the country? Sell them cheap to a dog broker who may resell them to labs or other unsavory buyers? Veteran breeders with good reputations often don’t consider a breeding unless they have cash deposits in advance for an average-sized litter.
What about after you have sold them to anyone with the cash you are demanding?
It’s midnight – do you know where your puppies are? There are THREE-AND-A HALF MILLION unwanted dogs put to death in North America each year, with many more dying homeless and unwanted through starvation, disease, automobiles, abuse, etc. Nearly a quarter of the victims of this unspeakable tragedy are pure-bred dogs with papers.
Nonsense you say? Dog breeding is big business you say? Well, think on this…
The breeder who creates life is responsible for that life. Will you carefully screen potential buyers? Or will you just take the money and not worry if the puppy is chained in a junkyard all of its life, or runs in the street to be killed? Will you turn down a sale to irresponsible owners? Or will you say “yes” and not think about the puppy you held and loved now having a litter of mongrels every time she comes in heat, filling the pounds with more statistics – your grand-pups? Would you be prepared to take back a grown puppy if the owners can no longer care for it? Or can you live with the thought that the baby you helped bring into the world will be destroyed at the pound?
Have you given a single thought to the quality of life the pups you have bred will have? Do you care who buys them? Or is your only concern the money that you are dreaming of? Well you can stop dreaming because here’s the breakdown on what your irresponsible decision to breed your pet will cost you:
Veterinary checkups during pregnancy (at least one) $160.00 – $200.00
Prenatal vitamins for your female $25.00 – 50.00
Checkups and shots for an average litter of puppies $200.00 per pup. Let’s say there are five pups in an average litter, that’s $1000.00
Post birth checkup up for your female $160.00 -$200.00
Possible cesarean section delivery $1500.00 to $3500.00 (depending on the dog’s size and weight.)
Possible grand total for one litter of pups $4950.00 (possibly more depending on the size of the litter)
“Why should I worry?” you say. “I will make it all back and then some when I sell the pups!” or if you are one of those type of people we all know and hate you might say “Why should I bother with vets and such?” Either way you are about to come to the sad realization that breeding dogs is not as easy and profitable as you think.
Look online, how many puppy sales ads do you see? Why are people going to pick your pups over those of other breeders with decent reputations? Oh that’s right you think selling them dirt cheap without shots and vetting will guarantee they are sold. WRONG! Anyone seriously looking for a healthy family pet is going to pass over your unvetted pups for those that are vetted.
So now it is twelve weeks after the birth of the litter and you still have three of the five pups running around your home, and the phone has stopped ringing. What will you do now? Your money making scheme was obviously a big flop and what’s more the costs of feeding your pets has tripled. So much for repopulating that bank account.
So, if you have an unfixed dog in your home, go to the phone call your vet and make an appointment to have her fixed. Prevent yourself from being tempted to use your beloved family pet as a money maker. She doesn’t deserve it, and it won’t help to solve your financial woes.
Until Next Time Remember,
SPAY or NEUTER your Pets!