Once upon a time, I thought it was outrageous to wait an eternity and then spend a couple thousand dollars on a breeder puppy when for a few hundred bucks, I could pick one out of a litter I found in the local newspaper and bring it home the following week.
Twelve years later, I’m here to officially tell you that you really shouldn’t buy a puppy off of Craigslist, Facebook, PetFinder, or any other fly-by-night operation that will ship you a puppy tomorrow.
I get that the average household doesn’t have a couple thousand dollars to shell out for the family dog. If I’m being honest, there’s no way my former self would have made this kind of commitment, either.
I got lucky. Very lucky. (Actually, I was quite stupid, and bought a puppy out of a newspaper ad.) But then I stumbled my way into a mentor who went out on a limb for me, and ultimately helped me get to where I’m at today.
I love this breed with all my heart, and I want the average family to be given an opportunity to love a well-bred Weimaraner, too.
So here’s the deal.
Until the glass of wine wears off or I wake up tomorrow and decide it’s a bad idea, I’m going to put one puppy out of the next litter available on scholarship to one family. In other words, I will sponsor $1,000 towards the price of your puppy.
In exchange, you promise to diligently follow recommended training for the life of your dog. This includes loving him dearly, but establishing boundaries. Spoiling him on occasion, but at the same time providing a solid foundation for him to grow on. Teaching your kids to respect his personal space. Crate him overnight but let him sporadically nap with you. Crate him when you’re away so he doesn’t get into trouble. Crate him when you’re home so he doesn’t associate it with my people are leaving me. Curb his bad manners. Reinforce the good ones. Bring him to the local Starbucks on a Saturday morning and let him sit with you while you drink your coffee and read the paper. Stop what you’re doing when people approach you, and let them pet your dog. Engage with them and tell them what a good puppy you have. Answer all of their questions with a smile on your face. Give them the impression that a Weimaraner is a wonderful dog. And then do the same thing when the next set of people walk by. Take so many photos of him he think’s you’re paparazzi. Crate him in the car most of the time, but let him ride shotgun with you once in awhile. Bring him with you when you go run errands. Leave him at home too, so he’s not too entitled. Groom him. Keep his ears clean. Keep his nails short. Get through the socialization checklist together. And then do it again. Go to the beach. Go to the mountains. Spend a weekend together. Feed him well. Keep him safe. Let me borrow him a couple weekends a year for the first couple of years so I can use him as an example to others of what a great dog he is. Turn him into an ambassador for the breed so that when people ask you what it’s like to own a Weimaraner, you can truthfully tell them, he’s the best dog you’ve ever had.
You should also write me an email (kim [at] barrettweimaraners [dot] com) to let me know that you saw this message, and that you’re interested in being selected for the scholarship pup. Tell me about yourself. Tell me how you’d spend the $1,000 you’d save if you were chosen. Let me know if you’d be interested in a puppy anyway, even if the scholarship went to someone else. And finally, let me know if it would be helpful to pay for your puppy over time, after you get him.
It’s important to me that the puppies I have available go to the best homes I can find for them. If you’re one of the best homes, let’s figure out how to make it work.
– Kim/Barrett Weimaraners