Below is an article from a member of the Weimaraner Club of America. We’re sharing it here to provide a secondary point of view on buying a puppy.
I think we can all agree that all dogs, regardless of their lineage/past, deserve to be loved. Yes?
Well, without REPUTABLE, RESPONSIBLE BREEDERS, who act as guardians for the breed standard…guess what…the Weimaraner that we all know and love would not exist.
Are there too many dogs (Weimaraners and others) in the shelters and rescues today? Absolutely!!
Do they all deserve a loving home, regardless of how they ended up in the shelter or rescue? Absolutely! I don’t think that anyone here would dispute this.
Can you still get a healthy dog, even if you don’t get it from a reputable, responsible breeder? Absolutely! I don’t think that anyone here would dispute that, either. But, if you’re purchasing (not obtaining from a shelter/rescue) one who is going to be a part of your family for 12+ years, wouldn’t you want to make sure you had stacked all the odds in your favor of getting a healthy, well-adjusted pet? And wouldn’t you want to know that there is always someone there, who is knowledgeable and experienced with the breed that is willing to help you out with any issues or concerns you might encounter with your new member of the family? Because, at the end of the day, whether you show, hunt, couch surf or anything in between with your Weimaraner, they’re all pets and part of the family.
Did the dogs in the shelter and rescues come from REPUTABLE, RESPONSIBLE BREEDERS? Absolutely NOT! A REPUTABLE, RESPONSIBLE BREEDER will have language in their contract that they will take the dog back, for any reason, at any age, period. And they do! The vast majority earnestly request that their name and contact information be included as a secondary contact on the microchip registration. This ensures that should you ever be separated from your new family member, if for some reason the people who scan the microchip can’t reach you, they will be there for you and make the necessary arrangements to ensure that your precious pup does not go to the shelter. The contracts will also stipulate limited to no breeding rights, depending on the agreement between the breeder and the owner. This ensures, in as much as the breeder can, that no puppies are produced from their lines that could potentially end up in a shelter. They breed to improve the Weimaraner, and spend countless hours and huge sums of money to prove that their dogs represent the best of the breed and are within the standard set for the Weimaraner by the parent club, the WCA, as well as health clearances to ensure their lines do not carry the genetic markers for a myriad of common health issues. They work with the puppies from the moment they are born to ensure that they have a variety of life experiences/sounds to help make them well-rounded, stable companions. They WILL most likely have a waiting list, so the people who want one NOW are not going to be very happy. But, they are worth waiting for. They take their time in selecting the right puppy for the right home, given the information they are provided by the potential new family and the personalities that appear as the puppies grow and develop. They stay in contact with the new families. They are there for you to celebrate the joys and help you through the tough times. They care and are there long after money has changed hands. They become an extension of your family, because honestly…that’s what they should be. Using the analogy that started this post, like a properly built house, the puppies from a breeder in this category start out with a solid foundation and they have done everything in their power to ensure that when you get one of their puppies, you are getting a Weimaraner that represents the best of the breed in all ways, physically, mentally and emotionally.
The Weimaraners in the shelters and rescues today are those that are from breeders who are neither reputable or responsible. They are the ones just in it for the money or any multitude of other reasons, because these people are most definitely NOT doing it for the betterment of the breed. They do put in the time and money it takes to ensure that they are not producing puppies who are predisposed to genetic health issues or prove their breeding stock meets the WCA standards. They do not pre-screen potential buyers. They frequently allow the buyer to select their own puppy without any regard to whether or not that particular puppy’s personality and demeanor are a good fit for the buyer. And, in 99% of these situations, once the money has changed hands and the buyer has left with the puppy, they never hear from the breeder again. If they do reach out because they are having issues, the breeder ducks their calls and seemingly disappears. THESE are the puppies that end up in the shelters, rescues or worse, on the streets, as the buyer didn’t do the proper research on the breed, and just can’t deal and the “breeder” washed their hands of the puppy as soon as they had their money and it left their property.
The sad reality is far too many people spend more time researching a new appliance for their kitchen than they do the new puppy, who should be a family member, that they are about to bring into their home. I have seen this time and time again. People see a Weimaraner and immediately want one…NOW. They might do some research, come on the FB pages and get advice on where to look for a REPUTABLE, RESPONSIBLE BREEDER who breeds to standard and to improve the breed. Then, they contact a couple of those breeders, find out the cost of a well-bred Weimaraner with a proven lineage or find they have to go on a waiting list. Then they go look in the newspaper and see a litter of Weimaraner puppies advertised for $250 for males, $350 for females and think “I’m not planning to show my dog, it’ll just be a pet, so why should I spend all that money on one from the breeder, I’ll just get one from this person in the paper.” This mindset is what keeps the disreputable, irresponsible breeders churning out the puppies, as they recognize there is a marked for cheap dogs, and they are more than willing to fill that gap and line their pockets. As long as there are people willing to buy, they are going to keep producing and the cycle of having Weimaraners (or any breed/mixed breed for that matter) in shelters and rescues will continue.
I agree, there are some reputable, responsible breeders who make it darned difficult to get a puppy from them…if you’re not going to show or participate in field trials/hunt tests, they won’t give you the time of day. I’m not a breeder and never will be. But, I do believe that we have many reputable, responsible Weimaraner breeders who really need to work on their people skills. There are many ways to let someone know that you don’t think they are a good home for one of your puppies without demeaning and demoralizing them. I’ve been on the receiving end of a few of those phone conversations myself in years past, and it is truly disheartening. But, trust me, if you keep at it, you WILL find there are other reputable, responsible breeders (through the WCA breeder referral program) who will be happy to have you as part of their extended family. You just have to be willing to put in the time and effort it takes to find them.