Below, in no particular order, are some frequently asked questions (and answers). Please feel free to contact me directly if there’s still a question you need answered. Thanks!
What is the purchase cost of a Weimaraner puppy? In Southern California, the typical cost of a responsibly-bred puppy is $1,500 to $2,500. Each litter is different; costs depend on pre-breeding expenses and anticipated litter size. If you are hoping to get on the list for a particular breeding, please let me know and I will provide you with an estimate.
What is the lifespan of a Weimaraner? On average, 12-15 years.
How long is your wait list for a puppy? There aren’t a lot of Weimaraner breeders in Southern California. I can’t speak for the other breeders but personally, I usually get A LOT of inquiries and I’ve always had more interested parties than I do puppies. I’m happy to keep interested families on my interest list but from experience, I can also share that families who are serious about waiting for a “Barrett” puppy usually watch a litter or two go by before they’re able to bring home a puppy. The best advice I can give you is to talk to as many breeders as possible, narrow your list down to which breeders you feel comfortable getting a puppy from, and then be very, very patient with the process. It will take a long time (6-12 months). Or, consider other breeds where you typically wouldn’t have to wait as long.
Why does it take so long to get a Weimaraner puppy? I’ve been asked this question so many times that there’s an article about it, here: http://www.barrettweimaraners.com/how-long-is-the-wait-list-for-a-barrett-weimaraner-puppy/
How often do you breed your dogs? On average, 2-3 times per year in my own home. Sometimes more, sometimes less. I had three litters in 2016 but zero litters in 2017. As of this writing, I am raising my first litter of 2018.
Which tests have you performed on your breeding dogs to make sure that they are good breeding stock?
Health. Good health is paramount. All breeding dogs are health-tested and health cleared before they are considered for breeding. Specifically, I follow health tests that the WCA recommends for inclusion in the CHIC program. In summary, this includes hips, eyes, thyroid, and HUU. I also test elbows for signs of dysplasia.
Temperament. Only temperamentally sound Barrett dogs are considered for breeding. This definition includes, but is not limited to a confident, friendly, fearless dog who is obedient and has a strong desire to please. In addition to standardized temperament testing from puppyhood into adulthood, all dogs considered for breeding are extensively evaluated for temperament.
Working ability. Barrett dogs are also bred to able-bodied working dogs. This includes an instinctive prey drive, good stamina, and natural hunting instincts.
Conformation. While I believe good conformation is important, creating “show dogs” is not my highest priority. I’m mostly interested in a healthy dog with excellent temperament and good working ability.
What is the required deposit amount? I generally don’t require a deposit and have always trusted families to pay for their puppies upon pickup (knock on wood, I’ve never had an issue). For families who are unable to afford a puppy in one payment, I’m happy to work out an alternate plan. Bottom line: I just want my puppies in great homes. That said, some families feel better sending me a deposit, for peace of mind to “know” they are on a puppy list. For those families, I’m happy to take 25% of the cost of the puppy. The deposit is always 100% refundable, anytime.
I’m a runner. Can my puppy go running with me? When your dog(s) are two years old, they’ll be ready to be your running buddy. We can discuss in detail/person about why they shouldn’t accompany you before they’re two. (It has to do with their growth rates and protecting their body from too much physical stress while still growing.)
Can I get two puppies at the same time? While I appreciate your enthusiasm!, it isn’t a good idea to get two puppies at once, regardless of whether or not they’re littermates.
Google “getting two puppies from same litter” and peruse the page returns. You’ll quickly find a lot of information on why it’s a bad idea. Here are some wonderful links on the subject. If you only have time to read one article, read the first one:
We can discuss in detail/person, but in summary, two puppies that are raised together will bond too much with one another, and training them to take direction from you will be a nightmare. (Note: no reputable breeder will sell you a puppy knowing that you will have more than one puppy at a time.) I do, however, like and advocate the idea of having multiple dogs so they can keep each other company, but you need to raise them individually. And trust me, raising ONE puppy is a freaking lot of work. If you’d like a personal testimony, I can connect you my current puppy owners, two of which originally wanted two puppies at once, and are now saying “I have no idea what I was thinking.” Ideal spacing for Weimaraners is 18-24 months.
Would you be willing to let the puppy stay with its mother and litter mates until it is 10-12 weeks old and make sure it receives the socialization it needs during that time?
Take a look at the photographic summary for one of the litters I raised. In summary, I cram a LOT into 8-9 weeks and personally feel this is an appropriate time to send them home with owners and get acclimated to their new home environment. New owners also go home with a six page socialization checklist to encourage additional exposure opportunities. I will also add that I HAVE kept a litter through ten weeks of age, but that’s because I needed more time to figure out where they were going, not because I felt that staying with me was better for them. 🙂
Do tails have to be docked? Do dewclaws have to be removed? Yes. Weimaraners were initially developed to be hunting dogs, and tail docking (as well as dewclaw removal) was historically done to minimize tail injuries in the field. Times are different now, but tail docking remains part of the AKC breed standard as a nod to customary practices. I don’t disagree that the process is somewhat hurtful, but I do it because I’ve made a commitment to “breed to the written standard.” In the United States, we all do it. 🙂 In other parts of the world (UK, Australia, for example), tail docking is illegal and Weimaraners in those countries have full/long tails. Also, I compete in the field with my dogs, and my dogs hunt birds, so for me, tail docking is not only cosmetic, but functional as well. Long tails get caught up in brush, stuck in cactus, etc. We dock the tails and remove the dewclaws when the puppies are three days old, before their nerve endings have fully developed, so it doesn’t hurt them as much as you’d think. They squirm just a bit during the process (which only takes a few seconds), and then they go right back to sleep.
Do Weimaraners and kids get along? Yes, on the condition that both children and dogs are trained to respect one another. Discipline for both children and dogs is critical. To be specific, adults in the household need to stay on top of how dogs and kids interact with one another and be very careful about making sure both parties are comfortable at all times. In the event a child is making a dog uncomfortable or a dog is making a child uncomfortable, the responsible adults in the room need to know the signs and take necessary actions in order to prevent an incident from escalating into a negative situation. Apologies for sounding vague! Additional information can be found, here:
I live out of your area. Will you sell a puppy to me? Yes. I’ve placed plenty of dogs outside of Southern CA. While I prefer local homes so I can physically keep in touch with the puppies I place and watch them grow up over time, being farther away is not at all a deal breaker. Local placements give me the ability to organize play dates, make house calls, and organize babysitting networks so when one family is out of town, another can help babysit the dog. Please do note that I do NOT ship puppies. If you’re within driving distance, wonderful. If you must fly, please arrange to have your puppy fly home with you in the flight cabin.
I’ve heard that Weimaraners are prone to Separation Anxiety. Is this true? Could my puppy develop separation anxiety? Weimaraners can display many different levels of separation anxiety. In my opinion, this is an inherited trait. And then sometimes, the underlying trait is encouraged / enhanced / supported / enabled by the lifestyle of the dog’s family. I can’t “guarantee” that your puppy won’t have any separation anxiety issues. (Don’t believe anyone who can; nothing is ever guaranteed.) However, creating clear boundaries such as crate training and alone training, and establishing routines, will all help your dog.
I am single and work outside of the home full-time. Am I a good candidate for a Weimaraner puppy? Sure! On the condition that your lifestyle includes your dog during times that you’re not at work. (For the record, I work full-time outside of the house, too.) Think about what you do when you’re not at work. Do you envision spending a lot of time with your dog and/or taking it places? If you’re one of those go-go-go types with an entirely full social calendar, leaving your dog at home in a crate by itself probably isn’t the best kind of lifestyle for him.
How do I take care of a young puppy if I’m single and I work full time? You can’t expect a young puppy to hold his/her bladder for an entire day. If you could make an effort to be at home for your lunch break, or hire a dog walker, or put your pup into daycare, that would be a good way to start/ease into the routine. When your pup gets older, you can stretch that alone time out to a whole work day. If I send you home with a puppy, I’ll also be sending with you an eBook called “Your Weimaraner Puppy: How to Survive the First Six Months.” It is written by two friends and mentors of mine, and has a LOT of good information about how to navigate those first few days and months. I also believe there’s a bit on how to crate train your pup. 🙂 If you’re not already familiar with this site, become familiar with it because it’s a resource JUST for Weimaraners: http://justweimaraners.com. 🙂 And down the road, if you need help with any of this, I’m just a phone call or email away.
I am single. In the event of my death or debilitating illness, would you be willing to accept my puppy back no matter how old he/she is and CAREFULLY re-home or care for him/her for the rest of his/her life? My current Weim is a rescue and as such has no breeder to be returned to. Instead she is willed to a rescue run by a fantastic woman that I trust and admire. Yes! In fact, the purchase agreement requires your dog to be returned to me if anything happens to you or you’re unable to continue caring for your dog.
I’m reading up on vaccines and read on the WCA website that an “antibody titer” is recommended at 15-16 weeks. What does this mean? Antibody titers indicate prior exposure or vaccination. At 15-16 weeks, the WCA is recommending you have the antibody titer done (by your vet) to confirm that your puppy was successfully vaccinated. As long as the titers are positive, there is no need to administer additional shots. You may also want to read this article. Very good information re: vaccines and how they work – http://justweimaraners.com/2010/06/confused-about-vaccines/
I would obviously vaccinate a puppy but I would use the safest protocol possible. After that I would run titers yearly and only vaccinate as needed. Is this a deal breaker? Dr. Karen Becker is my dream vet. You can watch her videos on Youtube if you’d like to know what type of medical care your puppy would receive.
As a member of the Weimaraner Club of America (WCA), I generally follow the WCA’s vaccination protocol. I also go as far as voiding health guarantees if owners do not follow the protocol that’s outlined in the purchase agreement. The good news (for you) is that this protocol encourages the use of titers after the second shot at the age 12 weeks. I also titer all of my dogs. So far, most of my puppies have had positive titers after the 12 week shot, making booster shots unnecessary. These titers have also been positive in subsequent years.
Are there exceptions to your Terms and Conditions? Yes, there are always exceptions to the rule! Holler with specifics.
Last updated: August 2018