Labradoodle Forums banner

1 - 20 of 33 Posts

·
Registered
Joined
·
560 Posts
Discussion Starter #1
Hello,

I am new to the forum and have found the information very helpful. We recently lost our beloved 12 1/2 year old Golden. I am needing that puppy joy back in our home and after much research believe the Australian Labradoodle would be best for our family. As a stay-at-home mom, we cannot afford the $2500 price tag for a puppy although we are more then capable of financially caring for a new dog. A reputable breeder in my city has offered to let me be a guardian home for one of her dogs. I get a free pick of the litter puppy, it has 3-4 litters depending how well she does, and then is spayed and ours forever. Is this too good to be true?

My questions:
1) It seems this is a common thing for good breeders to do, am I right?
2) Does the life expectancy of a dog that is bred become shorter after giving birth to this many litters. I know not being spayed may increase their risk of cancers, but other then that do the litters physically do harm to her health?I understand there are always risks but is there anything I might not know? This will be our beloved pet and if it is a well known fact that breeding dogs have shorter life expectancies in general, I would want to know this.
3) My breeder feels she may do a back to back litter. She feels this is healthier for the dog rather than spreading them out and making her have puppies after she is five years old. She does state though, that she will see how the dog does after giving birth. If she needs to have more time in between she will give it to her.
4) Is caring for an unspayed dog difficult? I understand the heat cycles and the possible bleeding, as well as protecting her from the 'boy' dogs while in heat. But, I have never had an unfixed dog, what am I in for?
5) Any other comments or things I should be aware of?

So you know, I have checked this breeder out carefully and am completely against puppy mills. She is very much in love with her dogs and does all genetic testing along with socializing, warranties, etc. This breeder belongs to several labradoodle associations and is very protective of her dogs. So far, I would be her first guardian family. She keeps a few dogs herself and so far has only had relatives as guardians.

Do you think this guardian relationship will turn out well or do I need to just keep saving my pennies?

Thank you!
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
6,836 Posts
Hi and Welcome

I'm sorry to hear you lost your furbaby, my condolences - it is a hard part of life to go thru.

I don't know anyone who has done guardianship so can't answer - there are breeders here who can tell you how it works and how the doggies do in the programs

Good luck with whatever choice you make
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,810 Posts
hi and welcome!

I have 3 dogs currently in guardian homes and had a 4th - my first one. All those situations have been fabulous for me as a breeder, but I really understand the idea that this might be too good to be true.

PLEASE feel very welcome to email me if you want to talk further with me about it, since I would be experienced, yet objective. I've learned a few things along the way and it can be REALLY great for both you and your breeder. (I prefer emails to pm's if you don't mind)
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
2,005 Posts
How common is it for a breeder to have a female in a guardian home? I know a few who keep their stud somewhere else, but have never met someone who just brings the girl in for whelping.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
560 Posts
Discussion Starter #5
Female vs Male

Hi,

Thanks for your responses. I think it is common to guardian a female dog. I know in my situation we preferred a female but the breeder is willing to give me a male or female depending on my preference. She stated with the female you would have to give up your dog for longer periods at a time (because of the whelping process) but she would be fixed earlier in life and therefore your committment is shorter overall. With a male you would have to give them back to the breeder for shorter periods as they don't have to feed their babies, but your committment overall would be longer before they got neutered as they may use the stud well past their 6th year. This is just what I was told. Not sure if they all work the same as I am very new to this.

Is there anyone out there that is not a breeder but in fact do guardian a female dog? What has been your experience? Thank you
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,810 Posts
I think most breeders realize that there is a need to shorten the time that a guardian dog is in service, compared to how long a breeder might keep his own dog intact. I would never ask a family to keep a male or female dog intact for 4-6yrs.

For example: yes, I would keep my boy Keenan intact MUCH longer if I owned him and kept him at my house, but because he lives with a guardian, and I have someone else involved, we have decided to limit using him as a stud for just 2 yrs. Likewise with my girl dog in a guardian home, she was going to only have 3 litters at most. (I usually have more than that with my own dogs.) So I was planning to breed her back-to-back for at least two litters, and then consider the 3rd. That way she would be spayed fairly early in her whole lifetime. That girl ended up having hips that are unsatisfactory for breeding, so we spayed her, but hey! she's living with her guardian family, as she always has, and doesn't have to face living somewhere new, ever.

I guess if I just tried to be concise :wink: I could tell you that the period of time that your dog is available to his/her breeder is COMPLETELY negotiable, or pre-set, and most breeders shorten the time, in consideration for the guardian family.

By the way, we have had 2 dogs in guardian homes (1 male, 1 female) where they were de-sexed before ever being used for breeding. Both the guardian families and myself agreed that since I had obtained/purchased the dog, but had not used him/her for breeding they (guardian family) would pay for the neuter/spay, and then the contract was void from then on. I appreciated that the first family actually offered that, since I hadn't thought of it, or put it in the agreement.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
9,243 Posts
I have had 2 guardian homes and am always looking for good guardians because I want my dogs to be in loving homes as opposed to kenneling them...although I know that there are good, loving breeders who choose to kennel their dogs, but still give them lots of love and attention...
Still, my preference is a guardian home.
In fact, I have a guardian girl here now that just had her litter two days ago...she will stay with us until she weans the pups. Having a male, you would need to be "readily available" because sometimes the timing is right and you have no notice. You also have to be sure that neither mate with another dog...not under any circumstance...this is a biggie...for health reasons, if nothing more.
It is a gamble for both parties and I suggest that you negotiate all things and then have it in a contract so that both parties are bound. Technically, until the dog is spayed and ownership is transferred, the "owner" could take the dog back, unless you have a good contract.
For instance, we had a great little male in a guardian home, we were preparing to breed him but his final test showed that he was a carrier for PRA...what would your breeder do? Some would make you pay for the dog, charging a pet price. Some would not.
What we did was to tell the guardian to have him neutered and we would sign over full ownership rights to her. She has only had this pup for about 5 months...we paid $6000 for him...and if we would have wanted to, we could have asked for him back, sold him to someone and recoup some of the loss...
So, think of all of the what ifs and ask what would happen...then get it in a contract. (What if the dog bites and/or causes damages to person or property, who pays? What if the dog is not "breedable"? What if you accidentally allow a breeding? What if the dog dies? How much notice do you need to give up the dog for mating or for marketing? Many more things to consider.)
It is a huge inconvenience to you and your family, but it IS a great way to get a wonderful dog...oh...yes, who pays for regular vet care and who pays if the dog is hit by a car?
Ask to have, in writing, exactly what the breeder expects from you and what you expect from the breeder.
It doesn't mean you dont' trust each other...but things happen and if you want to save yourselves possible lawsuits down the road...take this precaution.
About the impact on the dog's life, that is something to discuss with your vet and there is a lot of info, pro and con, on the topic...so no one can really say, but everyone has an opinion! LOL
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
560 Posts
Discussion Starter #8
Thank you so much for the info, both Jac and Maureen. Maureen I'm pm'd you like you asked - thank you.

Wow, Jac, you gave me some great things to think about and definitely to ask. After lurking on this forum I was hoping you would respond. This is the first time my breeder has also done a guardian program and I'm sure this will give her some thought as to what to include in the contract. I never even thought of the vet bills if a dog gets hit by a car (I did think about what if the dog was killed by a car - are we liable). I assume I would pay all bills while the dog is in my care, the breeder has indicated to me that all bills to do with breeding would be paid by her.

Probably my biggest concern is how much our family will miss her while she is at the breeders which could be up to 2 months. I feel knowing she is coming back to us though will help, plus the breeder has indicated that we are welcome to visit anytime and in fact, our pup would be proud to show off her puppies to us.

I look forward to seeing how all this will work out and am interested am excited to actually be part of this program - should be quite interesting. Bottom line though, is that the dog is brought up in a loving home, we are relieved of some of the financial burden and the breeder is showing their care and love for the dogs by providing this program. Hats off to all of you responsible breeders!
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
6,836 Posts
Wow so much to consider in a guardianship - I praise those that can do this, I'd have a hard time letting my baby go for 2 months :(

good luck - sounds like some wonderful info you have gotten her

JAC - more puppies ??? pictures and how about pics of the growing pups ????????? PLEASEEEEEE
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
9,243 Posts
Glad I could help...please feel free to PM me and tell your breeder that I am happy to share my guardian contract with him/her too...it might give you both some ideas...

Mary, thanks! You are so funny...actually, I have some updated pictures (as of today) on my blogpage...check the link below.

The pups keep me so busy I can't post many pics, but I sure would be proud to have you take a peek at the pics!

Thanks everyone!
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
6,836 Posts
Jac said:
Mary, thanks! You are so funny...actually, I have some updated pictures (as of today) on my blogpage...check the link below.

The pups keep me so busy I can't post many pics, but I sure would be proud to have you take a peek at the pics!

Thanks everyone!
They are adorable ! thanks for the puppy fix :D
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,254 Posts
Welcome to the forum :) Being a guardian home can be a wonderful way to go, just make sure you have a good contract and Jac points out some good examples. I would ask your breeder to go on one of the breeder forums and ask some reputable breeders if they would mind sharing thier guardian home contracts with her since this is her first time doing it. That way she can pick and choose what she would like to put in her contract.
Most breeders are very happy to share :)

As for breeding her females back to back and retiring them early, in my opinion, this is the best way to go. Of course, each dog is different and that is why your breeder says she will do back to back as long as there are no problems. Your vet will be very willing to talk to you about his/her opinion on back to back breedings and why it is best to breed back to back and retire early as long as the bitch is healthy.

I would also take a breeding female over a breeding male in a guardian situation simply because intact males have a tendency to mark in the house and they can become very hard headed. Not all intact males do so please don't anyone bash me for saying that but we all know that more than not, intact males have a mind of their own and can be hard to handle to an inexperienced dog owner. Neutered males make wonderful pets but I would never have an intact male as a pet.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
9,243 Posts
Hey, Di, great to hear from you!

I forgot to mention the back to back breeding...I think it is quite common.
Nature makes the female go through a similar physical pregnancy whether or not she is actually pregnant and I have found that the pregnancies are easier on them back to back...that is only if there has not been a tough pregnancy or delivery, then a rest is necessary and so is a vet consultation. But breeding back to back and retiring early is the best option if your female is healthy.

Maureen, I know that you have seen the pix now because you sent an email...but my link is always under my name in the signature line of this forum...glad you asked! :D
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
560 Posts
Discussion Starter #15
Thanks again for the info. My husband was very concerned about our potential girl having back to back litters, even though the breeder said it would be best (if the dog has healthy pregancies/deliveries). I am so relieved to be reassured by you that this is ok to do if the dog is healthy as she said.

PS - the internet has so much info on puppies and care in general - but I could find very little on the health risks and life expectancy of a female who is bred. Thanks again so much - you are all a well of knowledge that I know I can trust!

I am very excited to go ahead with the guardianship program. I may get a new baby by Christmas, but if that doesn't work out, for sure by summer. The hardest part now will be waiting although that does give my heart a little more time to heal from our previous girl.

lily
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
560 Posts
Discussion Starter #16
'A well of knowledge'? Sorry, meant to say a 'wealth' of knowledge. I guess you know who doesn't preview their messages!

lily
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,366 Posts
I love my dogs to be in guardian homes it works great for me and for the dogs, they get lots of one on one.

Few things I do for my families, I offer to keep the dog while they are on vacation, I offer to groom or help groom, this way I see them more often and they stay use to me. If things work well I plan on giving the guardian home a bonus when I have puppies from the dog they keep, that's with my females, not sure how I will do with my stud guardian.

I plan on only having no more than 4 litters with any of my females that are in homes, but that's me. I retire all my females by 4 1/2 anyway, they deserve to just be dogs and not Mama's for us. It is not as profitable but that's life.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
6,836 Posts
that's nice that you offer to let them stay with you while family vacations - I know for me, finding someone to care for my dog if I cant take them is a big concern
 
1 - 20 of 33 Posts
Top