So, you support rescue…what about breeding?

We foster dogs.

We volunteer at animal rescues.

We support animal rescue and try to be the most responsible dog owners we can.

Does that imply that I am against breeding and drive around with an ‘adopt don’t shop’ sticker on my car?


Well, it’s fairly simple. Let me boil it down:

If you’re a responsible breeder who takes pride in preserving the beauty and characteristics of the breed, ensuring that the dog has good bloodlines and ensure that the puppies go to a home that is a good fit – then I totally support you.

If you’re an asshat who thinks that your dog is “cute or handsome” and therefore needs to make puppies…get a life.

My dog is way cuter than yours and she won’t be having puppies, ever.

We have enough cute pups in the world. Leave it to the experts. Puh-lease.

If you are doing it for the money, I take it you haven’t been in the business too long and are making a bigger impact on the shelter & rescue population than your wallet. Plus, you’re doing nothing for the breed and could very likely breed a dog that develops major health issues.

Check out the Humane Society’s “How to Identify a Responsible Breeder” checklist.

Both of our dogs came from the result of irresponsible breeding.

Rio was listed on Craiglist because his family lived in an apartment and they weren’t allowed to have dogs.

Hmm. I’ll be nice and spare you a few remarks about that situation. Well, he got lucky and ended up in a rescue group until we adopted him.

Lola’s entire litter was abandoned in an empty house and the owners took only the mother and father. I really wish I knew more to that story…One thing is certain – irresponsible human beings.

A responsible breeder should take the same amount of effort in finding their pups a good home as a reputable rescue group does. Get nosy, visit their house, ask a lot of questions. We’re talking about an animal that lives 10+ years here. And make the offer that should they ever need to surrender the dog, that you’ll take them back and find them another home.

We have the bigger brain here, people. Let’s use it.

What do you think? Do you care if people breed their dog? Are you a breeder? Does it drive you crazy when ‘backyard breeders’ sell their puppies for dirt cheap to the next person that walks by with enough cash?

Think you might enjoy these reads:

My First Foster Dog

My Dog Bit My Child – Teaching Children to Respect Dogs

15 Replies to “So, you support rescue…what about breeding?”

  1. Ten years ago we adopted a Purebred English Setter, not quite 3 years old from a rescue. I wanted an E. Setter because I loved their looks. I did read up some about the breed. Would I have gone to a breeder to get one-no way! She wasn’t adopted because we wanted a purebred hunting dog. We just wanted a family pet. She is still her with us at 13 years old and doing VERY WELL as an elderly dog, thank you very much!
    A little over a week ago, my newlywed son & his wife adopted a one and a half year old German Shorthair from our local humane society. Another full bred dog. They had plans to adopt at some point but not quite so soon – 4 days after getting back from their honeymoon. I call him their honeymoon baby. Her parents have had this breed so the two of them are familiar with it.
    So if you want a full bred dog, wait as it may come to you.

    1. Great examples, Cindy! That is another common misconception of rescue/shelter dogs, that they are all mutts – which is definitely not the case!

  2. Very well written. I agree. I don’t think all breeders are bad and I can’t be against them because my baby came from one. My kids happened upon an ad and my hubby was trying to get me the puppy to help me with stroke issues. This couple was beyond responsible – checked vet records, required home visit and bringing the puppies to you, checked back on the puppy numerous times, said if it didn’t work they would take her back, etc. He indicated he had numerous people hang up on him when they required vet check or home visits. I wouldn’t have gone that route if my kids hadn’t have fallen in love with the pups in the ad (my oldest is a rescue) but I can see that he did the right thing by the dogs. In the future I would always try rescue first, of course, but in this situation it worked out. Now, of course, when they are a big douche and irresponsible like you said, then no – just no – that’s wrong. 🙂

  3. A responsible breeder knows that the money you make selling their pups is little reimbursement for the money they invest in the care and feeding of the puppies. To breed just because puppies are cute is the utmost in stupidity. It is the reason that we have so many hereditary diseases in dogs. I support your stance 100%.

  4. It absolutely drives me crazy! And I think I feel the same exact way as you do on this topic. We once had a lady come into the clinic who wanted to breed her chihuahua, for fun or whatever stupid reason. Funny part is, the male she wanted to breed her female with was missing a leg and was blind. AND he was born that way… all I can say is what an idiot! She also wasn’t the most responsible dog owner either. While her dog was pregnant, she became sick. After a few days, the lady brought the dog into the clinic and we discovered a steak bone stuck in it’s esophagus. We had to spend several hours trying to remove the bone and needed to insert a feeding tube after we did. Of course, the dog had to be under anesthesia and surprisingly enough her puppies did survive. I have no idea how they turned out though… people like this really upset me.

    1. It seems that with people like this, it’s truly for selfish reasons. But none the less – irritating. Thanks for the comment 🙂

  5. Love this. I support rescue, but I also support responsible breeders. The ones that study the breed standard and try to better the breed with each litter. The ones that LSD money because they spend so much effort ensuring their puppies will be healthy. The ones that have a rigorous process to purchase one of their puppies. Not just the first person to hand over the money. If we only had responsible breeders, there would be far fewer dogs in shelters. Responsible breeders take responsibility for theirs dogs for their entire lives. I wish we could regulate the breeding these days. I’m sick of hearing the dog is so sweet so they wanted to breed. Not good enough, people..

  6. I love love LOVE this post! I agree completely!

    My childhood dog was a standard schnauzer from a responsible breeder. We stayed in touch with Heidi’s breeder her whole life. Sadly, Heidi developed a brain lesion, and when we called the breeder we discovered her mother had died of the same thing.

    The breeder was heartbroken, because he really had wanted to improve and preserve the breed. Heidi was a beautiful dog, and has been healthy right up to the genetic illness that took her life too soon.

    IMHO, purebred dogs are MORE of a crapshoot than adult rescue dogs, and illness and injury are just a risk with giving anyone on earth a piece of your heart.

    I just did a podcast episode on this very topic: 8 reasons adult rescue dogs are better than puppies from a breeder:

    There’s more detail about Heidi, my rescue pups and my vet tech experience with both.

    1. Hi Kate,
      Thanks so much for sharing your experience about Heidi – I’m definitely sharing your podcast! Thanks for stopping by :)!

  7. Great post and to the point. I’ve given up. I have 4 local rescue groups that I support, but the rest I just can’t stand anymore. When I hear stories from my friends in rescue (and these are the mild ones) I want to cover my ears and scream. Not because they’re sharing horrific animal abuse stories, but because they’re reminding me of how irresponsible people can be.

    Last year I met 3 families who planned to breed their dogs, because they were cute. I got super excited and started asking all the questions breeders have taught me to ask a potential breeder – “you must be doing well, I hear breeding is a crazy expensive hobby, have you worked with this breed all your life, I bet you have a ton of property, will you have their hips checked, their eyes checked, ohhhh, I love the breeders who can give you the entire family tree, I met one who had it in a frame with pictures, will you have that, which veterinarian will you use, will you be taking care of the first series of vaccinations,do you do home checks, how did your contracts…???” And on an on until I soaked the excitement out of the situation and they walked away. They may have bred their dogs anyway, but I hope that all my questions gave them something to think about.

    The same event is just around the corner and this year I don’t think I have the energy to deal with people who aren’t reputable breeders so I got a list of local ones that I trust and anyone who tells me their going to breed their dog, I’m going to suggest that they work with one of my friends. Maybe they can convince them that the world doesn’t need another mixed breed pure bred aka designer dog.

    1. Hi Kimberly,
      I wholeheartedly agree. It’s sad for the breed(s) when people do not think about it beyond the thought of “my dog is so cute, her puppies will be adorable (and I can probably even make $$$ off them!)”. Good idea about having a list of local breeders that you know and trust. Thanks for stopping by!

  8. Almost two years ago we were at a friends house and they had the sweetest little Pit Bull puppy, my Fiancee wanted her very much, but we already have a rescue dog who was abused and she doesn’t do well with other female dogs, so that was out. Well we found out that the people that they got their little girl from had another little boy puppy. I am ashamed to admit that I had an ignorant fear of Pit Bulls because I had never spent any time around them, and all I had ever heard was bad things about them. Well me wonderful fiancee convinced me that he would be fine and that I would fall in love with him, so I agreed to take this little guy and as soon as I seen him it was love at first sight, and I am so thankful we took him because he has been the most amazing dog ever he is so loving and brings us so much joy, he is the sunshine of our days. I know now that he truly rescued me and opened my eyes to how very wonderful Pit Bulls are. I can honestly say two years later I am a proud Pit Bull mama.

  9. There is absolutely no reason to breed whatsoever. Responsible breeder? No such thing, all they’re responsible for is the death of thousands of shelter animals. Millions of dogs die in shelters every DAY because there are more dogs than peole that want them. Breeding needs to stop, period. Perfectly good, innocent, and yes, purebred (25% of shelter animals are purebreds) dogs sit and rot in shelters and most never make it out.

    People love to argue that they love the breed that they breed, and that if they don’t keep breeding them that the breed standards will lower and there will be “no more dogs.” If you really love the breed, why keep making more while millions upon millions of them die in shelters every year? You don’t love the breed, you love your fancy registered purebreds. And when it comes to breed standards, do some stats on a paper mean more than another shelter dog/cat’s life? Not at all, but some people are ridiculous enough to believe that. Also, if you think that we’ll run out of dogs if people stop breeding them, you’re just plain stupid. Even without breeders, stray animals will still reproduce and people still won’t spay and neuter their pets (becuase apparently having balls is more important than the pet’s health) and there will be accidental litters. I’m not stupid, I realize that breeders aren’t the entire problem, but they sure as hell are most of it.

    I repeat, there is no reason to breed. How important are your dog/cat show and hunting trials that only allow registered purebreds? Important enough that millions of pets should die in shelters so that you can parade around in a circle with your fancy dog or stand there while a judge evaluates your cat? So that you can watch your pure bird dog run around a field and hunt? Not likely. If you’re a real animal lover, you won’t support any kind of breeder and adopt pets from shelters, instead of buying from the people that put them there.

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