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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hello, I’m in the process of buying my first Doberman puppy. My girl was set to by picked up on 7/27 unfortunately today the breeder text me saying that a few of the pups for her litter had been exposed to parvo and tested positive. Should I be concerned about this breeder? I’ve always adopted puppies so this is a first for me working with a breeder. Thanks in advance!
 

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It's one concern, yes.

What sort of health testing do they do on their breeding dogs? What sort of titling do they do? What are the pedigrees?
 
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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
The parents were both given full genetic testing. No titles, this wasn’t a deal breaker for me because I have no plans to show her. In hindsight had I found this forum earlier I would have probably gone with a different breeder but at the time I believed I was going through a good one.
 

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The parents were both given full genetic testing. No titles, this wasn’t a deal breaker for me because I have no plans to show her. In hindsight had I found this forum earlier I would have probably gone with a different breeder but at the time I believed I was going through a good one.
Sounds like you're already committed to this then? I would definitely walk away from a backyard breeder breeding parvo puppies.
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
Sounds like you're already committed to this then? I would definitely walk away from a backyard breeder breeding parvo puppies.
Yeah I signed the contract and gave a deposit months ago. I didn’t feel like this was a BYB but I’ll admit my experience with breeders is limited to exactly one dog. I had a shih tzu that came from a long line of titled dogs, the breeder only bred one litter a year and the dogs went to show homes unless they couldn’t be shown for whatever reason. My girl had two different sized eyes so she was willing to sell her with limited registration as a pet. Since then I’ve exclusively adopted.
 

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Who knows? Maybe under the circumstances they will return your deposit and move on.

If not and if the puppy tested positive for parvo, that may invalidate the contract. If you do want out, that is an avenue that I would explore. In my experience no decent breeder would require that a buyer accept a potentially ill or possibly contagious puppy. You could also explain to them that you will hold them accountable for any veterinary bills that you may incur if they insist that you are forced to accept the contract. And although they have not enforcement ability the AKC does take complaints regarding registered breeders. They may not like the idea of you going in that direction

As a last resort, you could simply forego your deposit and look elsewhere, chalking it up to a lesson learned. That could end up being minimal when compared to the costs that you may have to absorb down the road.


John Lichtwardt
Portland OR.
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
Who knows? Maybe under the circumstances they will return your deposit and move on.

If not and if the puppy tested positive for parvo, that may invalidate the contract. If you do want out, that is an avenue that I would explore. In my experience no decent breeder would require that a buyer accept a potentially ill or possibly contagious puppy. You could also explain to them that you will hold them accountable for any veterinary bills that you may incur if they insist that you are forced to accept the contract. And although they have not enforcement ability the AKC does take complaints regarding registered breeders. They may not like the idea of you going in that direction

As a last resort, you could simply forego your deposit and look elsewhere, chalking it up to a lesson learned. That could end up being minimal when compared to the costs that you may have to absorb down the road.


John Lichtwardt
Portland OR.
Thank you, I’ll keep that in mind. The breeder said he had another litter on July 11th and that I would get a female from that litter. I’m definitely taking this as a lesson learned and going to much much more cautious when selecting a breeder.
 

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I will add my experience. I was researching breeders, joined the forum, found a few breeders with whom I spoke. Most didn’t have litters available, so when I found one that did I did the due diligence I THOUGHT I should do and ended up giving them a $1000 deposit. While I was waiting, I continued my education and during my additional research, found some alarming things about the kennel and their dogs (lack of health testing, early deaths, dubious parentage).

I explained my concerns to the breeder and was told I was no longer approved for a puppy. I lost my $1000. That hurt but I know I truly dodged a bullet. In the long run, the money I lost was nothing in comparison to the expense I would have incurred ad the heartache that would come with it, had I proceeded with that breeder. File under: Lesson learned.
 

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Wow, what sort of agreement did you sign that allows them to say they wont give you the dog you put a deposit on and keep your deposit?
Surely illegal in any country?
 

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The parents were both given full genetic testing. No titles, this wasn’t a deal breaker for me because I have no plans to show her. In hindsight had I found this forum earlier I would have probably gone with a different breeder but at the time I believed I was going through a good one.
So they don't holter or echo their dogs? No bloodwork checking liver, kidney, thyroid function?

I'd walk away from this one. Even if you don't get your deposit back.
 

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Discussion Starter · #13 ·
Good luck to your soon to be new family member, but upon pick up I would encourage a full medical check up on the puppy.
I’ve scheduled an appointment with my vet for a full check up and round 2 of her vaccines. I’m also going to have her tested with the Doberman Diversity Project, my vet said depending on the results we’ll start monitoring her heart between ages 2-3.
 

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You should do yearly holters and echos at age 2-3 regardless of any results you'd get through the DDP. None of those results would be predictive of future development of DCM. ALL Dobermans should have yearly heart screening.
 

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Discussion Starter · #15 ·
You should do yearly holters and echos at age 2-3 regardless of any results you'd get through the DDP. None of those results would be predictive of future development of DCM. ALL Dobermans should have yearly heart screening.
Do you recommend doing both? This is my first Doberman and though my dad grew up with them they were working dogs on a cattle ranch back in the 70s so echos were not given.
 

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Yes, both echo and holter yearly starting at age 2 or 3. There are dogs that will have a normal holter, but be diagnosed with DCM with an echo, or vice versa - normal echo, but diagnosed with DCM on a holter. Early detection and treatment can really extend the life of your dog if you do end up having a DCM diagnosis.
 

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Discussion Starter · #17 ·
Yes, both echo and holter yearly starting at age 2 or 3. There are dogs that will have a normal holter, but be diagnosed with DCM with an echo, or vice versa - normal echo, but diagnosed with DCM on a holter. Early detection and treatment can really extend the life of your dog if you do end up having a DCM diagnosis.
Okay thank you! This has been such a learning experience and I’ve realized that I probably should have slowed down when selecting a breeder. I guess the best thing I can do is provide the best medical care/nutrition and for my next one be much more selective with the breeder.
 

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I mean, you could still walk away from this breeder knowing they're not worth giving money to...
 
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Okay thank you! This has been such a learning experience and I’ve realized that I probably should have slowed down when selecting a breeder. I guess the best thing I can do is provide the best medical care/nutrition and for my next one be much more selective with the breeder.
Only you can make the decision but I strongly advise walking away. It is one this ro plan medical care and another to assume responsibilities for life-threatening issues knowing you could have passed and waited for a puppy from a breeder who actually cares about the health and longevity of the breed.
I wish you the best in making that decision. A lost deposit is small change compared to the cost of a serious medical issue.
 
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Best of luck with your new family member, in the end it is no fault of that baby and am glad your ready to do what you need to do to ensure best possible health. The real issue is these shady breeders rack in some cash and only encouraged to continue...
 
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