Breeder Vs. Rescue

When it comes time to get your next puppy, you have to make a decision whether to get one from a breeder or from a rescue. There are important things that you need to know about both options.
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What you need to know about rescue dogs.
I grew up in a time period where spaying and neutering dogs was not done as frequently as it is done now. If you wanted a puppy, you could often times find a farmer that had puppies to give away, and you just went and picked out one and took it home. Quite often, you didn't have any idea of what the dog was going to turn out looking like, because the farmer might not even know what dog sired the litter. It may have been any of the many dogs from the surrounding farms. That was pretty typical of the era. Today, most people spay and neuter, so there aren't quite so many to choose from, and now, your choices usually come down to getting from a breeder or some sort of rescue.
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In my life time, my family had gotten some puppies from those farm situations. They ended up being great dogs. We never did know much about what kind they were. They were pretty much heinz 57's. I have also been known to walk into a vet clinic and see a litter of puppies running around that had been rescued, and take one of them home. That one made an awesome dog for my youngest daughter. I still have no idea what kind of dog that was. We just labeled the breed as "mutt", and it became my daughter's best friend.
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I have also rescued purebreds. I got word one day, that some lady had a Border Collie. She absolutely hated the dog, and wanted to give it away. At the time, I was working cattle on horse back and thought it would be helpful to have a cattle dog. I will save that story for another blog. It was quite entertaining!
Long story short, I went and looked the dog over, (keep in mind that I am an experienced dog handler, and know what to look for). It was about a one year old female. Cute as can be, but really didn't want to get close to you. I drug her home too. Her name was "Tess". I couldn't figure out why the lady didn't like the dog, except for one little flaw with the dog. She wouldn't come when called. I put her on a long rope, and trained her the command "come", and ended up with an awesome dog. Point of the story is, I have evaluated dogs and rescued them, and brought home some amazing dogs over the years.
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A few years ago, I had someone contact me that was looking to adopt a rescue dog. I started checking out what was available in the animal shelters. It is nothing like it used to be, at least in my area. The majority of the dogs were mainly Pit Bulls and Pit Bull mixes. There wasn't much else in there to choose from. Before you choose to adopt a dog like that, you should research the breed and check out these statistics:
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For several years, I was dog groomer. I had several clients bring in dogs that they had just rescued from animal shelters. 99.9% of them, were too aggressive for me to even get close to them, and the new owners were very concerned of what they were going to do with their new dog, because it was aggressive to them as well. That is dangerous enough, when there are only adults in the home, but EXTREMELY dangerous, when there are children in the home. 
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When I was in 2nd grade, my best friend got half of her face completely torn off by a dog. She had to go through countless plastic surgeries over many years, and her face was never the same again. Her face was messed up permanently so bad, that she had to wear a retainer on her teeth, because her face pulled her teeth crooked, from the injury that she sustained. It was a horrific situation. I personally know people that had family members killed by dangerous breeds as well. People need to understand the seriousness, of rescuing the wrong dog. The results can be horrific and permanent. 
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There are some groups in this country, that would like to shut down dog breeders. I will have to say, that SOME breeders DO need to be shut down, and I will get into that later in this article. These same groups push and push and push, to rescue dogs from the shelter and guilt people if they buy from a breeder. They make people feel sorry for the dogs in the shelters. My aunt was one of those people. She went and found a dog from a shelter and rescued it. It was a very sickly dog, and she had to put thousands of dollars worth of vet bills into it to get it healthy. The vet really struggled to treat the dog, because the dog had been shipped here from another country, carrying a disease that the vets in this country were not familiar with. After doing a little research, I found out that MANY dogs in our shelters, are being shipped here from other countries, and the people that are doing it, are making a whole lot of money doing it too.
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What you need to know about buying from a breeder.
Before getting to far into this topic, I want to mention that there are many scams going on in the dog industry. People say that they have a puppy for sale, and have you put a deposit down, and then later, you find there never was a puppy to be sold, and you have just lost some of your hard earned money, and have nothing to show for it. BEWARE OF PUPPY SCAMS!
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There are several types of breeders. I will try to discuss the most common types.
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The puppy mill:
These people do not care about the dogs at all. The dogs and puppies are generally stuffed in cages and live in their own filth, and it is typically a completely inhumane situation for the dogs and puppies. The dogs/puppies quite commonly are very poorly bred and cared for, and quite often have a lot of health issues. The breeders breed only for profit, and don't really care about anything else. These breeders need to be shut down.
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Backyard Breeders: 
These people have no idea what they are doing. They are breeding anything to everything, and it is hard telling what you are going to end up with. You might luck out, but you might not. They are typically someone who has a pet, and throws it randomly in with whatever other dog that they can get their hands on.
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Responsible Breeders:
Responsible breeders do their research. They learn about the breed standard, and do their best to achieve that. They have a goal in mind, about what they want to achieve with their bloodlines. They put a lot of time, effort, and money, into making sure that their dogs are cared for properly, and have a good life. They CARE about their dogs/puppies and make decisions based on that love for their dog/puppies well-being. They are cautious of who they sell their puppies to, to ensure that they will be going into loving homes, and not into bad situations. When you buy from a breeder, you will have a pretty good idea of what kind of a dog it will grow up to be, versus getting a heinz 57. 
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To sum this all up:
There is no one size fits all, when it comes to what puppy/dog you adopt, or whether you buy from a breeder. This is America. We are a free country, and each individual should be able to have the right to choose. However, you need to make sure that you are making an educated decision. Always do your research! The one thing that I do feel VERY strongly about tho, is if you have small children around, be very careful about which breed that you adopt, and where you adopt it from. In most cases, I would HIGHLY recommend starting out with a puppy with kids, unless you thoroughly know the background of an older dog that you are considering adopting. Some things are just plain and simply irreversible, and it should be a top priority to keep the children in as safe of a situation as possible.
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Kim Eastabrooks