Dog breeding: the new taboo!

In a rescue-filled world, breeding is starting to become taboo.  It’s a dirty little secret you feel you have to keep.  Many people don’t understand and assume that you must be an irresponsible dog owner.  Others assume you want to breed your dog to theirs regardless of temperament, breed, or physical soundness.  There are only a handful that truly understand the reasons behind choosing to breed in today’s rescue-oriented society where there are tons of homeless pets in shelters.

In a nutshell, there are a staggering amount of things to be done before a responsible breeder will breed their dogs.  It is not an easy task, nor a cheap one.  It is not done for money, but for the love of preserving their breed.  To make sure their breed exists in as healthy and sound of a state as possible.  Good breeders love their dogs more than anything and will go to the ends of the earth to ensure that their dogs never end up in the shelter system.

Having both rescued and supported breeders, I can tell you both are rewarding experiences.  It feels great to rescue a homeless pet suffering in a cage and watch them enjoy a new life with you.  It also feels wonderful to know your breeder-acquired dog will have a good home should you not be able to care for them and to be able to meet your dog’s ancestors.

People choose to go with breeders instead of rescuing for many reasons.  Some may want a dog bred for a particular purpose, such as a hunting dog or a seeing-eye dog.  Others enjoy the peace of mind that the dog will have a good chance at being healthy from a genetic standpoint.  Ultimately, researching a breed and choosing which path to acquire your dog is a very personal choice and as long as the owner is responsible and loves their dog, it doesn’t matter if they were adopted or gotten from a responsible breeder.

There are countless people out there breeding their dogs irresponsibly, and it is giving all breeders a bad name.  People who don’t bother to spay or neuter, people who think it’ll calm a bitch down if she has a litter, people who “won’t cut their dog’s balls off”.  Some have good intentions and think their dog has a nice temperament and should be bred.  Others just want to make money.  Whatever the reason, supporting those types of breeders is what has gotten us into the shelter problem in the first place.

Wherever you choose to acquire your dog from, there is no substitute for researching breeds and being prepared for a fifteen-year commitment with whatever dog you choose.  It’s important to understand that you will have to make sacrifices and that having a dog isn’t always easy.