Buying puppy advice

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21 August 2021
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Hi All

Just after some general advice for visiting a breeder really.

We’re due to visit a Rhodesian Ridgeback litter in a month or so and been told it will be a group viewing with other prospective puppy purchasers as that’s the fairest way.

Not having done this before, I’d appreciate it if you could all give some advice and let me know how this works as I really like the breeder and don’t want to end up in a potential scenario where more than one person likes the same pup!!!!

Was going to take the kids too, but think I’d rather be able to walk away than have a forced purchase due to peer pressure from my teenage daughters and son 🤣🤣🤣

Many thanks in advance for helping out with this.
 

CorvusCorax

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Is it the first look or collection?

Usually there's a list and people pick in a certain order, the breeder may have taken videos taken over a period of time, they will observe the litter and once they know what people are looking for, can advise on which pups will suit which people.

IME males and females would be separated then thinned out into smaller groups and any little tests you want to do can be carried out.

I can imagine it would not be very comfortable having everyone all there at once and I've never heard of it before to be honest. Even on collection day it's usually staggered.
I had first pick of females with my current youngster and I visited twice, she was one of three I liked, then down to two (but pretty certain) then I turned up first on collection day for one last quick looksee.

Agree leave the kids at home.
 

SAujla

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Group viewing sounds bizarre. You want to go alone so you have the breeders full attention and can see all the pups and the mother by yourself. It sounds like the breeder doesn't want to set aside the time for people to come individually, which isn't a great sign in itself
 

buddylove

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Puppies do not "choose" their new owners, à la fairytale scenario.
The breeder should be temperament testing the pups and matching to suitable homes, normally based on the answers in the questionnaire/interview that the breeder has carried out with all prospective owners. This set up sounds like a recipe for disaster!
 
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Oh dear. It’s not a cheap purchase either. I’ve had one before but my parents bought it from a friend of ours so never done the puppy buying process before.

Group viewing sounds crazy to me. Such a shame because they’re beautiful dogs. Been to see one of the breeder’s other previous dog sales nearby and temperament was excellent. Just really don’t like the idea of a free for all showdown as a group. Sounds like a Black Friday puppy sale frenzy on the cards to me!!!
 
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Gosh, I’m hoping I haven’t got it terribly wrong. But it sounds like getting everyone together on the same day will create a pressure cooker environment.

I’ve also reached out to the Midland and North Rhodesian Ridgeback club for advice. It’s such an important purchase. And we’ve never been through the puppy buying process before.
 

silv

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Group viewing sounds like they are hoping to pressurise people into buying by introducing competition. I think I would be questioning just how responsible a breeder they are as I cannot see that being anything other than stressful for the pups and their mum.
This, I would have nothing to do with this scenario. Disappointing for you, but is sounds quite bizarre and really stressful for everyone, mum and pups foremost. Ridiculous in my opinion.
 

spacefaer

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How old will the pups be?
Will they have had at least one of their jabs?
Because if not, no one should be handling them until they have. It's very easy to unwittingly transfer bugs and viruses like parvo to young puppies.
In a group situation, it'll be impossible to judge an individual puppy's temperament or even remember which is which if they're all a similar colour and build.
 
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We’ll see them at 6 weeks. I’m guessing they’ll still be inside at that time?

They will be vaccinated, KC registered and micro chipped.
 

CorvusCorax

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I got mine at 7.5 weeks (too early for me but it was a big, rambunctious litter, bitch was fed up and breeders were tearing hair out) and they had first vaccination and microchips. Registration/change of ownership docs were posted out. On all visits I washed hands religiously and skooshed my shoes/wore clean clothes etc.

Re telling them apart, on the day of collection, I arrived first (but was running late) and a few collars had come off through playing etc. We quickly put the two we thought were 'the ones' into the garden pen and after a quick look, I put the one I thought she was in van as other people started to arrive 😂
When scanned I was given her vacc card, the colour of the collar was written on it and I was right.
 

MissTyc

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I viewed mine at 5.5 weeks. The breeder only permitted one viewing per day and she had a litter of 8, so she started viewings from 5 weeks. I was the 4th or 5th viewer - all the boys were pre-reserved but I had a choice of girls. We had a long conversation about the puppies and their parents (also discussed on this on the phone but when they're in front of you there are suddenly so many extra questions!). We were then left alone to interact while breeder busied herself in the background. We narrowed the the choice to 2 or 3 available girls, and the breeder told us what she thought of each of them and helped us make the decision based on that conversation. A little coloured collar went on and that was it, she was ours. I am not sure I could have coped with other viewers around. I would either get competitive and somehow end up with the less suitable puppy or get stroppy and feel I couldn't make a decision and leave!

Because it was a big litter, the breeder didn't want repeat viewings, but she sent loads of videos and did a fab job socialising the puppies.
 

twiggy2

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Anyone who is willing to put their bitch through a group viewing of her pups is producing a litter I would avoid in all honesty.
The infection and stress risks are increased for the pups.
Also covid is potentially a risk if that worris should or you have anyone vulnerable around you.
6 weeks is early for a full vaccine and if it is just parvo it would indicate high risk kennels.
I have a friend who is very knowledgeable with RR (she has been involved with them for over 35 yrs) and very very particular I can ask her about the kennels/breeder if you want to pm me details?
 
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Just wanted to say thank you to you all for the advice and tips. I avoided the original breeder with their ‘group’ viewings. Contacted the Rhodesian Ridgeback Midland and Northern club. Their puppy coordinator put us in touch with a top breeder who happened to just have a litter and the possibility of a pup. The breeder doesn’t advertise, good sign already, was very cautious with lots of questions. She breeds to a high level and always makes sure they stay well below the permitted percentage for close bloodlines.

So, we went to visit. Amazing experience. Just us with 12 pups!!! After a couple of hours we picked our top 3 and the breeder then went through her waiting list.

We ended up going for this beautiful liver nose (see attached pic).

He’s fantastic, with a gorgeous colour and beautiful amber eyes. And a great temperament. Turns out he’s the biggest, but we didn’t choose him for that, he was just so affectionate and always looked after the smallest in the litter.

Anyway, thank you again for all your comments and advice. So happy we went with this breeder!!!!

0D9D224D-C54D-4B53-99BE-96E3BC8C612A.jpeg
 
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