8 Tips for Finding and Working With a Responsible Breeder

Breeding dogs is a business but also a serious responsibility. It takes a lot of time and effort, and it takes years to develop the knowledge base necessary to produce healthy, well-adjusted puppies who will be suitable for your family. But if you’ve decided that having a purebred dog is right for you, then finding a responsible breeder can be one of the most important steps on your journey toward becoming an owner.


1. Find a breeder who specializes in the breed you want

Whether you’re looking for a great family pet or a show dog, it’s important to find a breeder who specializes in the breed and can provide you with detailed information about the breed’s temperament, health and longevity. A responsible breeder who specializes in your breed of choice will be more knowledgeable about those characteristics than someone who breeds many different types of dogs.

For example, if you choose a specific type of Aussiedoodle for sale because it’s what you want as a family pet (the standard poodle), it would be beneficial to ask questions about whether this particular type is known to have any health issues or behavioral problems before making any decisions about purchasing one from that particular breeder.

2. Don’t be afraid to ask questions

There are a few things you should ask a breeder about before you meet. These questions will help you figure out if the breeder is responsible and knowledgeable, as well as if you’re comfortable with them as a whole.

Get to know the dog’s personality

This is particularly important if you want to adopt an older dog or one of two breeds that are known for having strong personalities (like German Shepherds). You should ask how the puppy has adjusted to its new home, and whether it likes visitors or other animals. By asking these questions up front, you’ll be able to make sure they’re appropriate for your lifestyle.

Ask about health history and how they were raised

You should also ask about health history in general—both physical and mental—and what kind of care was given during their first year of life at this breeder’s facility. Knowing where they came from will give you a better idea of what type of dog-specific issues could arise later down the road if something does go wrong with your pup’s development early on in life; it may also provide clues into why certain behaviors develop later down the road too!

3. Look for health guarantees from reputable breeders

One of the best ways to ensure that you’re getting a healthy puppy is by working with a responsible breeder who offers health guarantees on their puppies. You should expect your breeder to offer at least one year of health coverage for any genetic conditions or other issues that may come up during that time.

Some examples of conditions that reputable breeders might guarantee include:

  • Hip dysplasia (a condition affecting the hip joints)
  • Progressive retinal atrophy (PRA)

If you buy from a good breeder, they’ll be willing and able to provide you with references from previous customers who have had similar dogs, so that you can talk to them about their experience with the pup–or ask about their experiences raising other pups from this line.

4. Try to find a puppy that has been raised in a home, not a kennel

  • Don’t buy a puppy from a pet store.
  • Don’t buy a puppy from a backyard breeder.
  • Don’t buy a puppy from a puppy mill.
  • Don’t buy a puppy from an online source, especially if you know nothing about the breed or where it came from (meaning: don’t use Craigslist as your go-to place to find dogs).

And finally, please please please don’t ever go to one of those “puppy mills” that seem to be popping up everywhere—those places where they rip puppies away from their mothers at just eight weeks old and keep them in tiny cages all day long while trying to sell them for $150 each on Craigslist or Facebook Marketplace or anywhere else they can get away with selling sick animals so they can make money off of other people’s misery without any consequences whatsoever? Please stay away!

If you have any respect or empathy at all for living things then please don’t support these places by buying anything from them—and especially not for cheap prices! Only look for a registered, well-known and trustworthy breeder, and be specific when looking for them, for example, ‘registered cavoodle breeders in Victoria’ not just ‘a dog breeder in Victoria’.


5. Look for breeders who are well-equipped

How to tell if a breeder is well-equipped

The first thing you should look for in a responsible breeder’s facility is that they are keeping their dogs in clean and sanitary conditions. You should also make sure that the dogs have access to fresh water, and that they are living in an environment where they can be kept cool during hot days and warm during cold nights. Does the breeder schedule a regular house call vet for a health check?

What to look for in the dogs

Next, look at each dog individually, starting with its coat. The coat should be smooth without any mats or tangles; it should also have no signs of parasites (such as fleas or ticks). The dog’s eyes should be clear with no discharge of any kind on them; its ears should not be red or inflamed; its nose shouldn’t be too wet or dry but rather normal in coloration.

Finally—and this may seem like common sense—make sure that all animals seem alert and calm when approached by humans!

6. Look for breeders who are willing to provide references

  • Look for breeders who are willing to provide references.
  • Ask how long the breeder has been breeding dogs.
  • Find out how many dogs the breeder has bred, and ask for names of previous puppy buyers you can contact (usually through email) to get firsthand information about their experience working with this breeder.

7. Check references, and check them carefully

You may be tempted to take the first breeder you see, but finding a responsible breeder is worth the extra time. Reputable breeders will have nothing to hide, so they’ll be happy to show you their kennels and vet records. If you can visit the kennels in person and speak with previous buyers, that’s even better.

If the litter of puppies does not meet your expectations or if something seems off, do not hesitate to ask for references from other breeders—you’re likely going to be able to find at least one person who will have good things (or no bad things) to say about this particular breeder.

8. Don’t be afraid to say no to a breeder if you don’t like what you see

It is important to remember that no matter how much you want a certain breed, if the breeder does not meet your standards or you don’t feel comfortable with them, it is always better to walk away than to buy a puppy from someone who does not meet your expectations.

You should be able to expect good health and socialization for all of their dogs. If the breeder seems unwilling or unable to answer any questions about their breeding practices or dog’s health history, then this could be a sign that they are hiding something from you.


The truth is that if you’re looking for a well-bred puppy, you have to do some research. You can’t just go on instinct or trust your gut feelings; instead, you need to be willing to ask questions, check references and take the time necessary to find a good breeder who will provide a healthy puppy with a lifetime of love.


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