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Thread: Convincing against buying from a breeder

  1. #121
    Cavy Slave doganddisc's Avatar
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    Re: Convincing against buying from a breeder

    Quote Originally Posted by CavyMama View Post
    The shelter I volunteer for, and yes, it's a local shelter/county owned, some would call it the pound, does not euthanize for lack of space. The mantra is: No adoptable animal has an expiration date. Once the animal passes the temperment test, they are put up for adoption. They are not on death row. They are not on a countdown to death. They stay at the shelter until they are adopted.
    Not every county has the resources to run this type of shelter, but I'm glad yours does! For southern shelters, however, taking in hundreds of dogs a week makes keeping all of them until they are adopted an impossible feat.

    [quoteIf there is a reason they cannot (space, too stressed out, etc), we have a network of foster homes who take them in. We also work with other local animal organizations and have an off-site adoption location where there is more foot traffic.[/quote]

    Once again, this is great, but not everyone has the resources to do this.

    We have an on-site veterinarian and the staff are all vet techs so these are knowledgeable people. The techs are the ones doing the temperment testing.
    Vets and vet techs are NOT behaviorists. I am currently working on an undergraduate degree in Animal Science at a top university. Students who opt for a pre-vet concentration are, like me, not required to take a behavior course. I took it anyway because behavior is a subject I am primarily interested in. It was significantly lacking in detail.

    The times Ive been in the dog room, I've only been met with a growling dog once and she had just been brought in. The rest have all been lovely, friendly, excited to play, dogs. Mind you, this would be what is considered the local pound. The place these supposedly aggressive, not-fit for society dogs go to be put down.
    Didn't you say that your shelter had a temperament test upon intake? Are you talking about dogs that have already been temperament tested?

    And as sassyfirechick and I have already pointed out numerous times, temperament tests often fail to show aggression. Are most dogs in pounds aggressive? Absolutely not. But judging by the Gwinnett County Animal Shelter website, a good percentage of them are (Gwinnett posts dogs who have failed the temperament test and are not available for adoption but can be reclaimed by their owner).

    As for the moronic comments mentioned that volunteers made with the idea that they will say anything or downplay the quirky or negative behavior to get a dog adopted, it's unfortunate that one person would make those but believe me, it is NOT a true indicator of how volunteers work.
    Pretending it doesn't happen doesn't make that the case.

    It doesn't make sense to downplay any issues. Doing so increases the odds that the dog will be returned so we want to put everything out front. The potential adoptor needs to be aware of any issues so they can make an informed decision about adoption.
    Of course! That's the way a reputable responsible rescue sees things. But I know of MANY in my state alone that do not operate this way. They are made with bleeding hearts who adopt the same dog out time and time again, hoping that the next home won't mind that he is severely aggressive.

  2. #122
    Cavy Slave doganddisc's Avatar
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    Re: Convincing against buying from a breeder

    Quote Originally Posted by pinky View Post
    You're going to find unethical individuals in most every aspect of society. Rescuers that make a positive difference screen those who do transports and require documentation to make sure the animals are well cared for. I've read of some tragic situations that resulted when people who did transports left animals in their vehicle. That's the exception and not the norm.
    I never stated that it was the norm. My point was that the exception does happen and that no-kill shelters are a TERRIBLE idea. Euthanizing aggressive or extremely sick dogs is the humane choice.

    Good legislation is the way to correct that.
    The absolute last thing we need is more legislation.

    As far as overcrowded shelters, breeding is to blame for that. If you didn't have people intentionally breeding and dogs were routinely neutered, the numbers would drop.
    And if more people trained their dogs from day one, the numbers of dogs being turned into shelters would drop significantly as well. Responsible breeding DOES NOT contribute to shelter populations. A responsible breeder's dogs NEVER end up in a shelter.

    As far as quoting from the HSUS, I don't consider them to be advocates for companion animals. They're one of the first ones to advocate euthanizing.
    Me neither, but that isn't why. What you stated below is. Euthanizing IS humane. And I only quoted the HSUS because what they had to say was true. (See previous discussion about HSUS about a page back).

    With all the money they have, they could make a huge difference and positive impact on the quality of life of animals in shelters but they choose to only donate about 1% of their millions.
    Because they are a scam.

    As far as dogs that are aggressive and if there are rescues or sanctuaries that will take them in and care for them, bless the individuals who are such compassionate souls.
    No, no, and again, no. There are dogs dying because these individuals WASTE resources on dogs who can never be adopted out. Euthanize the aggressive dogs and you open up THOUSANDS of spaces for dogs who are NOT aggressive. Best Friends is just sitting on a massive sum of money and land where dogs could be rescues and rehabilitated to a reasonable extent. Instead, they choose to house dogs who could never be placed into society. To what point and purpose? An aggressive dog is not a happy dog. You believe it is much more humane to lock the dog in a cage for the rest of its life? I don't get it.

    You better believe that dedicated rescuers do everything in their power to guarantee a dog will go to the right family.
    Of course they do! This is exactly what I did. I feel like you aren't actually reading my posts..

    Not only do they do that, they spend a lot of their own money caring for those animals and if they fall short, they put out a plea to others they have supported in the past
    Yes..

    As far as lack of space, there are many transports that move dogs from the southern states that tend to be overcrowded to other states where dogs are desired.
    There are still dogs being euthanized in Conneticut shelters and dogs being transported from southern states into Connecticut rescues. This is not a magic cure. The breeds we are importing are desirable- not the dogs themselves. Nobody wants the Pit Bulls and Rottweilers we have here. So southern dogs take up those homes. That is quite sad and definitely not the solution to end all solutions.

    Still, huge numbers are euthanized. I've been amazed at what I've seen rescuers do to turn feral dogs and cats into loving companions.
    Feral animals are, by definition, wild. They can never be a "loving companion" like a domesticated dog or cat can. They can be socialized to the extent that they will be able to exist in society, but beyond that what you have is essentially a wild animal. Prove me wrong.

    You're right about then having the understanding of human/animal interaction. That's what they do. That's their calling. And once they know the disposition of that animal, they find it the right home.
    Unless it is horribly aggressive. And then they should euthanize. Which is what this conversation is about.
    Last edited by doganddisc; 05-17-12 at 10:49 am.

  3. #123
    Cavy Star, Photo Contest Winner pinky's Avatar
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    Re: Convincing against buying from a breeder

    [QUOTE=sassyfirechick;635689]
    Quote Originally Posted by pinky View Post
    Shelters are another issue. Since a large chunk, but not all, are publicly funded[ /QUOTE]

    I'd love to know where these publicly funded facilities are, really! Aside from individual town run "shelters" that typically involve a run-down shack of a brick building behing the town garage, shelters are not publicly funded. Even large facilities (HSUS, ASPCA, or large local like the Connecticut Humane Society) are all non-profit, funded purely by donations, not government money. MOST shelters are funded by donations.

  4. #124
    Cavy Slave doganddisc's Avatar
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    Re: Convincing against buying from a breeder

    ASPCA has facilites all over the country and do represent animal rescues and shelters. HSUS does not.

    http://www.aspca.org/Home/Adoption/shelters

  5. #125
    Cavy Star, Photo Contest Winner pinky's Avatar
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    Re: Convincing against buying from a breeder

    Quote Originally Posted by doganddisc View Post
    ASPCA has facilites all over the country and do represent animal rescues and shelters. HSUS does not.

    ASPCA | Find a Shelter
    From what I've read, the ASPCA wanted to disassociate itself from New York's shelters and transferred operations of them to the Center for Animal Care and Control in 1995. That's where a huge chunk of their money was going prior to then. The terms HSUS, ASPCA, SPCA, and humane society are often used generically, too, so what some people refer to as one of the above, don't necessarily mean them. What I really dislike about the big 3: HSUS, ASPCA and PETA is that these groups have millions and there's no way to really track what they're using their money for. If you just look at HSUS, a tiny fraction goes to shelters. I'd say anyone who donates, thinking they're contributing to the plight of displaced animals, would be better served donating to shelters and rescues locally to see where the money goes.

  6. #126
    Cavy Slave Cavylier's Avatar
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    Re: Convincing against buying from a breeder

    Quote Originally Posted by doganddisc View Post
    And if more people trained their dogs from day one, the numbers of dogs being turned into shelters would drop significantly as well. Responsible breeding DOES NOT contribute to shelter populations. A responsible breeder's dogs NEVER end up in a shelter.
    Training from day one has nothing to do with it. A dog can be trained at any age; it depends on the individual training the dog. It's people who expect perfect and obedient dogs all the time who are the problem.

    Responsible breeding does contribute to shelter populations, unless you're implying that every responsible breeder takes in any puppies they sell, if their customer does not want them any more after a few years. It's either that or they get put down, which we can both agree is inhumane.

    Quote Originally Posted by doganddisc View Post
    No, no, and again, no. There are dogs dying because these individuals WASTE resources on dogs who can never be adopted out. Euthanize the aggressive dogs and you open up THOUSANDS of spaces for dogs who are NOT aggressive. Best Friends is just sitting on a massive sum of money and land where dogs could be rescues and rehabilitated to a reasonable extent. Instead, they choose to house dogs who could never be placed into society. To what point and purpose? An aggressive dog is not a happy dog. You believe it is much more humane to lock the dog in a cage for the rest of its life? I don't get it.
    That's like saying, "Oh very sick people are already very sick - let's just wait for them to die out and keep treating only the ones who will get better fast until there are only healthy people in the world."

    Aggressive dogs, dogs who have suffered abuse, dogs who have never known a good life - these are the dogs that need help all the more. A place like Best Friends is not the norm. So one place does not handle the way it rehomes dogs very well - this does not mean that all shelters helping aggressive dogs are abysmal.

    And as for 'An aggressive dog is not a happy dog', well neither is a dead one. Personally, I would focus on trying to make their life better rather than jumping to conclusions like 'they'd be happier off dead' without any knowledge of what really happens after death.

    Quote Originally Posted by doganddisc View Post
    Feral animals are, by definition, wild. They can never be a "loving companion" like a domesticated dog or cat can. They can be socialized to the extent that they will be able to exist in society, but beyond that what you have is essentially a wild animal. Prove me wrong.
    I have tamed several feral cats, who are just as loving as any other cats. I agree that it takes a different approach from the usual training, but it can be done. One of them even follows me around to accompany me and comes when I call, even when I do not have food just because he enjoys being a 'loving companion'. I've even known of many pet cats who were way more vicious than some of the feral ones I've met. There, you've been proved wrong.

    Jumping to conclusions about personality or behaviour just based on 'where it came from' is a very narrow-minded way of looking at things. Lots of animals suffer horrible abuse in my country just because they are thought to be wild, and even more because they are not pure-bred.

  7. #127
    Cavy Slave doganddisc's Avatar
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    Re: Convincing against buying from a breeder

    Quote Originally Posted by Cavylier View Post
    Training from day one has nothing to do with it. A dog can be trained at any age; it depends on the individual training the dog. It's people who expect perfect and obedient dogs all the time who are the problem.
    Training has everything to do with it. The vast majority of dogs are turned into shelters between the ages of 6 months and 1 year. In their adolescent stage, dogs will test their owners. A foundation in training from day one will make the test that much more bearable and the understanding of the owner that much more tolerant. According to Nathan Winogard, owner retention is actually the number one reason that there are so many animals in shelters, not overpopulation.

    Is pet overpopulation a myth? Inside Nathan Winograd's "Redemption"

    It is not about expecting a dog to be perfect. It's about being educated enough to know how to handle when your dog isn't being perfect. This is something, more than breeding, that most people have trouble understanding. Read that article- it's a good one.

    Responsible breeding does contribute to shelter populations, unless you're implying that every responsible breeder takes in any puppies they sell, if their customer does not want them any more after a few years. It's either that or they get put down, which we can both agree is inhumane.
    By definition, a responsible breeder is one who takes back any puppies that cannot be kept at any stage of life. So no, responsible breeders do not contribute to overpopulation. As a rescue, I had adopters fill out a contract stating that they would return the dog to me if they were unable to keep it. I have kept in contact with all of my adopters and helped them when they had any problems. If I were breeding, I would be a responsible breeder. I choose to rescue because that is my passion. But when I look to buy a dog from a breeder, I look for a breeder who breeds with the same ethics that I would.

    That's like saying, "Oh very sick people are already very sick - let's just wait for them to die out and keep treating only the ones who will get better fast until there are only healthy people in the world."
    Um. No. That's like saying that certain people are too dangerous to keep in society and we should kill them to keep them away from others. IE: the death penalty. If you reject euthanizing aggressive animals, you reject the death penalty. I'm personally split on concept of the death penalty but fully support euthanizing dogs for aggression. Mostly because you can explain to a human why they are locked in a cage for the rest of their life. Animals don't understand this concept and suffer as a result. I have seen the suffering that comes from a no-kill environment in multiple shelters. The one I posted about earlier was not an isolated incident. I would rather be dead than live where these dogs lived.

    Aggressive dogs, dogs who have suffered abuse, dogs who have never known a good life - these are the dogs that need help all the more. A place like Best Friends is not the norm. So one place does not handle the way it rehomes dogs very well - this does not mean that all shelters helping aggressive dogs are abysmal. And as for 'An aggressive dog is not a happy dog', well neither is a dead one. Personally, I would focus on trying to make their life better rather than jumping to conclusions like 'they'd be happier off dead' without any knowledge of what really happens after death.
    The level of aggression of which I speak represents a dog that is either extremely frustrated or extremely unhappy. According to Temple Grandin, frustration in animals is aggravated by being locked in a cage. So you are supporting the further aggravation of an already aggravated animal by locking them up for the rest of their lives. If my own dogs, whom I love very dearly, had serious aggression problems, I would always opt to euthanize because I personally believe it is far more humane to put an animal out of their misery than to sit and watch them suffer for years on end in a place where they have zero human interaction because they cannot be trusted outside of a controlled environment.

    I have tamed several feral cats, who are just as loving as any other cats. I agree that it takes a different approach from the usual training, but it can be done. One of them even follows me around to accompany me and comes when I call, even when I do not have food just because he enjoys being a 'loving companion'. I've even known of many pet cats who were way more vicious than some of the feral ones I've met. There, you've been proved wrong.
    I put too much of a blanket statement on the last thing I said, admittedly, so yes, I'm sure it can be done. I would never euthanize an animal that was feral but not aggressive. I hope you did not misunderstand me. My argument was that a feral animal will always communicate differently with people than one who is not feral. They cannot be placed into just any environment because there are many people who do not understand how to care for a feral animal. I would, however, be very selective about adopting them out.

    Jumping to conclusions about personality or behaviour just based on 'where it came from' is a very narrow-minded way of looking at things. Lots of animals suffer horrible abuse in my country just because they are thought to be wild, and even more because they are not pure-bred.
    I agree. I am not jumping to any conclusions. Being feral means the animal acts feral, ergo I am judging the personality, not the animal's origins.

  8. #128
    Cavy Slave
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    Re: Convincing against buying from a breeder

    Quote Originally Posted by doganddisc View Post
    How dare you.

    Temperament tests are extremely inaccurate. A dog is tested within days of arriving at a very scary place. Dogs can show an excess of aggression that they would not normally show or a lack of aggression that bears absolutely no resemblance to their true temperament.

    Caleb was severely aggressive toward everybody BUT me until he went after me. Upon further examination, my vet noticed that Caleb's back right knee was bent inward, as if he had been kicked hard when he was still growing. But this was only a theory. It could have been MDR1, it could have been abuse....it could have been any number of things that I personally had absolutely no control over.

    I implore you to consider other's feelings on a matter such as this before you post something like that again. While this may be a sore subject for many people, I have not made any personal attacks toward you or any other user, despite our fundamental disagreements. Blaming me for what happened to Caleb is a low blow, whether or not you fail to understand my view on breeding and euthanasia. We all love animals here and Caleb meant the world to me. It tore me apart when I was not able to save him.
    Doganddisc, I'm very sorry about Caleb. I agree that some dogs are too dangerous and should be humanely euthanized to keep them from living out a life of solitary confinement, which is no life at all However, since he did pass the tests, and seem perfectly fine until after he was treated with medication that has been known to cause aggression, it's very likely that the testing was true, but the drug did the damage. I am very sorry for your loss, but a dog who was harmed by medicine is no argument to support breeders, who do directly increase the problem of overcrowded shelters among other things.

  9. #129
    Cavy Slave
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    Re: Convincing against buying from a breeder

    Quote Originally Posted by Silverwind View Post
    However, since he did pass the tests, and seem perfectly fine until after he was treated with medication that has been known to cause aggression, it's very likely that the testing was true, but the drug did the damage. I am very sorry for your loss, but a dog who was harmed by medicine is no argument to support breeders, who do directly increase the problem of overcrowded shelters among other things.
    I believe she was trying to make the point that the temperament test may have been inaccurate because at that point you can't know what caused it. MDR1 gene presence can be tested for but in a dog infested with heartworm, where Ivermectin is the primary treatment (and at those high levels can kill even a non-MDR1 dog), you're looking at a negative either way. And you can still argue FOR breeders, since in breeds prone to this mutation it has become commonplace to test all breeding stock before planning a litter since positive dogs will pass it along to puppies. Without responsible breeders out there trying to eliminate these genes, there's no telling how common they could become.

  10. "Thank you, sassyfirechick, for this useful post," says:


  11. #130
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    Re: Convincing against buying from a breeder

    Where are the breeders trying to breed out MDR1?

  12. #131
    Moderator CavyMama's Avatar
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    Re: Convincing against buying from a breeder

    Quote Originally Posted by doganddisc View Post
    Not every county has the resources to run this type of shelter, but I'm glad yours does! For southern shelters, however, taking in hundreds of dogs a week makes keeping all of them until they are adopted an impossible feat.
    To which I say, maybe those southern shelters need to educate people there about the benefits of spay/neuter. Most shelters spay/neuter before any animals get adopted.

    Didn't you say that your shelter had a temperament test upon intake? Are you talking about dogs that have already been temperament tested?
    Yes. Temperment test upon intake. They aren't even in the adoption room until they have passed the temperment test. Your point? Growling does not necessarily equal aggression. As I said, this was a dog that was recently (within the last week) taken into the shelter. Understandably, she was a little freaked out.


    Pretending it doesn't happen doesn't make that the case
    And pretending that it happens everywhere and should be used as a blanket statement for all shelter volunteers, doesn't make that the case either.

  13. #132
    Cavy Slave doganddisc's Avatar
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    Re: Convincing against buying from a breeder

    Quote Originally Posted by CavyMama View Post
    To which I say, maybe those southern shelters need to educate people there about the benefits of spay/neuter. Most shelters spay/neuter before any animals get adopted.
    That is being done as we speak! They are also being educated about responsible breeders, vaccinations and heartworm prevention, and humane euthanasia (in the case of pounds that still use a gas chamber). But those willing to educate need the same resources to spread the word that the county needs to house all of the surrendered animals. And spay/neuter programs are free or low cost because the county pays for them. That takes resources too. The problem is not that the whole world is sitting back and letting this happen. A great amount of effort is put into education- but people, unfortunately, will do what they want to do and believe what they want to believe. You can only tell somebody so many times to neuter their dog. If they don't want to do it, they aren't going to. Infuriating.

    Yes. Temperment test upon intake. They aren't even in the adoption room until they have passed the temperment test. Your point? Growling does not necessarily equal aggression. As I said, this was a dog that was recently (within the last week) taken into the shelter. Understandably, she was a little freaked out.
    Growling is, by definition, an aggressive behavior. So yes, it does.

    Good for her though. Usually a dog that growls is doing you a favor- you WANT the dog to warn you when it is uncomfortable.

    And pretending that it happens everywhere and should be used as a blanket statement for all shelter volunteers, doesn't make that the case either.
    You're stuck on this shelter volunteer thing, aren't you? I'm a shelter volunteer, so anything I say about them I say about me. Where did I put a blanket statement on volunteers?

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    Cavy Slave doganddisc's Avatar
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    Re: Convincing against buying from a breeder

    Quote Originally Posted by salana View Post
    Where are the breeders trying to breed out MDR1?
    Breeders of the affected breeds will always test for the MDR1 gene if they are reputable breeders who truly care about their dogs.

    I have no examples for you. I am specifically interested in Border Collies and don't keep track of breeders of any other breed. Border Collies have such a low percentage of MDR1 in their lines that it isn't worth tracking right now. Collie Eye Anomaly, however, is.
    Last edited by bpatters; 05-18-12 at 05:56 am. Reason: Removed breeder source information

  15. #134
    Cavy Slave doganddisc's Avatar
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    Re: Convincing against buying from a breeder

    Quote Originally Posted by Silverwind View Post
    Doganddisc, I'm very sorry about Caleb. I agree that some dogs are too dangerous and should be humanely euthanized to keep them from living out a life of solitary confinement, which is no life at all However, since he did pass the tests, and seem perfectly fine until after he was treated with medication that has been known to cause aggression, it's very likely that the testing was true, but the drug did the damage. I am very sorry for your loss, but a dog who was harmed by medicine is no argument to support breeders, who do directly increase the problem of overcrowded shelters among other things.
    The instance with Caleb has absolutely nothing to do with why I support breeders. Caleb is why I support euthanizing aggressive animals.

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    Moderator CavyMama's Avatar
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    Re: Convincing against buying from a breeder

    Quote Originally Posted by doganddisc View Post
    Growling is, by definition, an aggressive behavior. So yes, it does.
    Okay well my sister got her puppy from a breeder. This is one of those "reputable" breeders, where she had a large property and socialized the puppies before selling them, etc. Had she asked my opinion before doing so, I would have directed her away from that but she didn't. Although the dog does not resource guard with me, he DOES growl at my nephew when he moves toward his toys. Dogs from breeders aren't perfect either.

    You're stuck on this shelter volunteer thing, aren't you? I'm a shelter volunteer, so anything I say about them I say about me. Where did I put a blanket statement on volunteers?
    I was referring to the moronic quotes you said you heard a volunteer say in order to ensure a dog was adopted. Hiding the issues, and sugar-coating the truth. Not all...in fact MOST do not do this. If they have the best interest of the dogs in mind, they are trained to be honest with the potential adoptors.

    Please do not paint all shelter volunteers with this brush. A select few might think they are doing the right thing or maybe there is a shelter that is just focused on moving dogs out that they train the volunteers to do that. But if the people have the best interest of the dogs in mind, they wouldn't do something that might mean the dog is returned later.
    Last edited by CavyMama; 05-18-12 at 12:50 am.

  17. #136
    Cavy Slave doganddisc's Avatar
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    Re: Convincing against buying from a breeder

    Quote Originally Posted by CavyMama View Post
    Okay well my sister got her puppy from a breeder. This is one of those "reputable" breeders, where she had a large property and socialized the puppies before selling them, etc. Had she asked my opinion before doing so, I would have directed her away from that but she didn't. Although the dog does not resource guard with me, he DOES growl at my nephew when he moves toward his toys. Dogs from breeders aren't perfect either.
    Socialization does not prevent the dog from learned resource guarding when the nephew is permitted to approach the dog's toys in the first place. This is something that develops overtime. Maybe they "trained" the puppy to not pick up items around the house by taking the item from his mouth and telling him "No!". If every time I tried to inspect something somebody ripped it out of my hands, I would be pretty protective of my toys as well.

    Would you encourage this same nephew to harass your guinea pigs while they are eating?

    Absence of aggression is not what makes a dog perfect. There is no concept of perfection when it comes to animals because what is perfect for me is not perfect for you.

    Perfect for me would be a dog that DOES resource guard when necessary (IE growls at an intruder when my family is unaware of their presence). Some dogs, like guardian breeds, are bred specifically for their aggression towards strangers and other large animals that may attack their flock. These days, we do have gates and barbed wire. But, if it were up to me, I would much rather have a good guardian dog than barbed wire.

    When your sister contacted the breeder for advice about her puppy's resource guarding, what was the breeder's response? A good breeder will advise her on which trainers she should seek out to fix the problem.

    I was referring to the moronic quotes you said you heard a volunteer say in order to ensure a dog was adopted. Hiding the issues, and sugar-coating the truth. Not all...in fact MOST do not do this. If they have the best interest of the dogs in mind, they are trained to be honest with the potential adoptors.
    Not all do this. Many do. Most do not. But it does happen.

    The same goes for breeders. Many are irresponsible and do not care about their animals. But there are plenty of breeders who hold their animals in the highest regard and offer them the best care.

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    Re: Convincing against buying from a breeder

    Quote Originally Posted by doganddisc View Post
    Socialization does not prevent the dog from learned resource guarding when the nephew is permitted to approach the dog's toys in the first place. This is something that develops overtime. Maybe they "trained" the puppy to not pick up items around the house by taking the item from his mouth and telling him "No!". If every time I tried to inspect something somebody ripped it out of my hands, I would be pretty protective of my toys as well.
    A few bits of info to fill in the gaps: The puppy is 8 months old and is a mini dachshund. Nephew is 11 and it's not food he is taking, it's a toy or rawhide. He isn't ripping it out of the dogs mouth. He just takes hold of one end and the dog growls. I puppysit while they are at work/school so I am with the dog most of the day. He does not growl or guard toys or food when I need to get them from him.

    Items are sometimes items he should not have but he lets me just open his mouth and remove the items he should not have. These are the items he's been told "NO!" for and he does understand the "no". In most cases, he does stop before even picking the item up.

    Most of the time, the items in question are just a rawhide or a squeeky toy that he is enjoying playing with. He doesn't mind if I lift it away from him, especially if it's a ball or something I have been throwing for him to retrieve. He will give it up to me without a problem. No growling or hesitation. But my nephew, who does tend to rough house a bit more with the puppy than I do. He imitates how his dad plays with the dog which is in a more rough and tumble manner.

    Would you encourage this same nephew to harass your guinea pigs while they are eating?
    Nope and I try to discourage him from doing so with the dog. But I can only advise them, as it's not my dog.

    Perfect for me would be a dog that DOES resource guard when necessary (IE growls at an intruder when my family is unaware of their presence).
    I agree. I never much thought about having a guardian type of dog, only as a companion but after I was attacked in my home last summer, my focus was for not only a companion but a dog that would warn me about an intruder. The police suggested it as well. My understanding is that most dogs will instinctually protect those they feel most bonded to (their family, etc). But I could be wrong on the instinctual part.

    But, if it were up to me, I would much rather have a good guardian dog than barbed wire
    Definitely agree with you there.

    When your sister contacted the breeder for advice about her puppy's resource guarding, what was the breeder's response? A good breeder will advise her on which trainers she should seek out to fix the problem.
    She hasn't been in contact with the breeder since she brought the dog home in November. I have a feeling though that the growling with my nephew is more a learned behavior. Nephew doesn't always use the best judgment when approaching the dog.

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    Re: Convincing against buying from a breeder

    Quote Originally Posted by doganddisc View Post
    Socialization does not prevent the dog from learned resource guarding when the nephew is permitted to approach the dog's toys in the first place.
    I know. I was just using that as an example to distinguish her being a reputable breeder from a backyard breeder.

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    Re: Convincing against buying from a breeder

    Please pm me the website for the border collie breeder-I would like to see what their breeding program is like and how they keep the dogs, how they choose who to sell to, etc. Border collies are actually the dog breed I have some experience with. My parents have always had border collie mixes (from shelters, the street, or "oops, free puppies" ads). I've got to say, a border collie is kind of a lot of dog for most people looking for a pet. I grew up being herded by an extremely intelligent and extremely tolerant border collie/hound mix, who never showed the slightest inclination to bite my toddler hands grabbing at her face to point out "TEEF!" and "EARS!!" However, most dogs are not Reba, most people do not have an acre of yard that needs to be kept squirrel free, and most children would get bitten in this situation. Do we blame the dog? Do we blame the breeder, if the dog was intentionally bred? Do we blame the child? The parents? Stupid Cesar Millan for teaching people to be unnecessarily aggressive with their dogs?

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    Re: Convincing against buying from a breeder

    If a guinea pig bites, we say, "he must have mites, or be in pain." If a hamster bites, we say, "You woke him up or invaded his tunnels, or he was badly socialized at the pet store, don't touch him." But we expect a dog to be left alone with a toddler and never bite, no matter how abused in the past or sick at the moment, no matter how he may be provoked, and if he bites we blame the breeder, or the breed, or the owner. But wherever we place the blame, it is the dog who suffers quarantine or euthanasia.

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