List Of Questions To Ask Breeders
BELOW IS A LIST OF QUESTIONS YOU SHOULD ASK AND THINGS YOU SHOULD
LOOK FOR IN A BREEDER WHEN BUYING A MASTIFF PUPPY.
- Are the Mastiffs being bred, checked for and clear of the
following genetic problems? (Must be documented, not just the
IF THE BREEDER SAYS THAT THEY HAVE NEVER HAD A PROBLEM WITH ANY
OF THE ABOVE, ESPECIALLY HIP DYSPLASIA, ASK THEM HOW DO THEY KNOW
THAT THEY DO NOT HAVE A PROBLEM IF THEY DO NOT TEST!!!
- Hip and elbow dysplasia. Ask for copies of OFA
reports showing grade of hips, and clear rating on elbows. Some
will tell you that they have x-rayed their dogs, and their vet
says they are OK. Ask them why they did not send the x-rays to
the OFA. A regular vet is not a trained radiologist, many make
huge mistakes. The OFA has THREE board certified radiologists
examine the x-rays to make an accurate diagnosis.
- Eye defects, Ask for CERF (Canine Eye Registration
Foundation) numbers, and for a copy of the actual exam sheet,
not just the certificate.
- Thyroid problems. Ask for a copy of the thyroid
test results. Hypothyrodism can mean a lifetime of allergies,
skin and reproductive problems.
- vWd. von Wildebrands disease. (Bleeding disorder)
Ask for a copy of the test results.
- Heart and Patellas. Ask if the breeder tests for these,
especially the heart. Get copies of the OFA certificates.
- How old are the Mastiffs being bred? (The bitch should be
at least 22 months, preferably 2 years old or older, but under
- Why did they use that stud dog? Convenient? Cheap? Handy?
- What faults do the bitch and stud dog have? (All dogs have
some faults, if not please let me know who they are!)
- What are the life spans of the parent's ancestors? Beware
of dogs whose grandparents/parents died very young of unknown
- Are the sire and dam related? If so, how closley? Don't
be put off by a certain amount of inbreeding. This sets the genes,
and the dogs are more likely to breed true. If you are afraid
of getting worse defects (which also happens), then look for a
pup that is an outcross, where the parents are unrelated.
- How often do they breed their bitches? When was the bitch's
last litter? (Maximum should be once a year, unless the bitch
only had one pup.)
- Do the breeders show their dogs? If not, how do they know
the quality of their dogs without comparing them to others?
- Do the breeders belong to any dog clubs? Do they actively
try to educate others and help to improve the breed?
- Do the breeders bad mouth other breeders? (Trying to make
themselves look better?) Beware the breeder that belittles other
peoples dogs or the people themselves. Of course if more than
one breeder tells you about the same breeder, then listen, do
more research and beware.
- Are their Mastiffs kept in the house or are they in small
kennels like livestock? Even worse, are they crated all of the
time, only let out to relieve themselves? There is however, nothing
wrong with large shady kennels with access to fresh water and
room to exercise.
- What are their guarantees? Do they put them in writing?
Do they ask you to sign a contract? A contract works both ways.
- Are the pups current on their vaccinations and dewormed when
you get them? I've actually had some breeders tell me that the
pups haven't had their shots so they could keep the price down!!
- What are the dogs being fed? Do they use a cheap brand or
a premium brand? Do they feed the pups a high powered puppy food?
(Trying to make them bigger faster so you'll think you're getting
a huge dog.) Knowing these things will tell you a lot about the
breeders (in it for money only) and also what health problems
the pups might encounter later. (knuckling over, HOD, pano &
other orthopedic problems).
- Are the breeders willing to take the dog back if for some
reason you can no longer keep it? A good breeder is responsible
for what they produce for the lifetime of the dog, good or bad.
- Most important. Are they planning on keeping a pup? If
not, why? Why did they breed if not to keep a pup? Money?
This may seem like of lot of research, but you are planning
on keeping this Mastiff for a lifetime - longer than a new car,
often a house, or even these days, longer than a spouse! Remember,
you are paying for the history, research, knowledge, and work
that has gone into making MONARCH Mastiffs the BEST Mastiffs
that I can breed. I hope that everyone works as hard for the
Mastiff and for you!