Things to avoid in a breeder

They breed a lot, often using the same Sire and Dam for multiple litters. This is often to save money on stud fees and travel. There is often no end goal and no thought is given as to whether the pair are a good match for each other. Their only aim is to produce puppies to sell.

The parents are perfect examples of the breed. This is often something said by breeders to make their stock sound good to someone who does not understand the breed. No dog is perfect, even Crufts Best In Show winners! A good breeder will always be happy to say what they are wanting to improve on, if someone thinks their dog is perfect with no faults at all then it may be because they don’t know or can’t recognise a fault so do not have a good understanding of the breed.

Advertising them as rare. Cardigans may well be a vulnerable breed but there are still a good amount of dedicated preservation breeders breeding them. Advertising them as rare is a ploy to sell puppies.

Puppies can’t be seen with mum. Never entertain a breeder who hasn’t got the mother of the puppies. They may well have bought the litter in from a dealer.

Puppies are not KC registered. Please see my comments about the eye condition PRA on the ‘Finding a breeder’ page

They say they are KC registered but there is no paperwork. I have seen people get caught out when a breeder promises to send the paperwork on in the post but they never do and it turns out the puppies are in-fact not registered. Sometimes there may be a very legitimate reason for the breeder not having the KC paperwork but its a risk to take. Most breeders will not register puppies until they are around 4 weeks of age but the Kennel Club tend to be pretty quick with getting registration papers out so they should be with the breeder by the time a pup leaves at 8 weeks.

They do not ask you any questions. A breeder who does not ask any questions about a buyer and is happy to sell to anyone who turns up with the cash does not have the pups best interests at heart. You are very unlikely to get any sort of backup once you leave their premises with your pup.

They ask for a holding deposit before you have met them or the puppies. This is a big red flag. There are many scams that ask for you to part with money before seeing the pups and often the pups do not even exist. Even if they do, a breeder who is willing to take money before even meeting you and ensuring you are a suitable owner only has money as their motive. Again, you are unlikely to get any sort of backup once you have your puppy.

The Pups are KC registered with endorsements but the breeder wants more money to lift them. Never buy from a breeder who asks for money to lift endorsements. It costs the breeder nothing to do this other than a letter to the Kennel Club. It is often used to extort money from people. Also a breeder should always make you aware of any endorsements they have placed, and the conditions for lifting them in writing, that you will need to sign to say you understand BEFORE you take your puppy home.

Pups kept in unsanitary conditions or look unhealthy. If you visit a breeder and the puppies and Dam are not in good condition, walk away. People often buy a puppy from these situations as they feel they have rescued the puppy. All you are doing is encouraging them to breed more. You may well end up with a sickly puppy. If the situation is serious the proper authorities need to be alerted.

Remember, if it doesn’t feel right, it probably isn’t.

If you are unsure about a breeder, contact the breed club and ask if they are aware of them. Buying a puppy is a very exciting time but equally can be very stressful. The breed Club will always help anyone looking for advice.  Here is a link to their website -

The Kennel Club will have a list of breeders but just remember, not every KC registered puppy is well bred and comes from a good breeder, this is why I recommend contacting the Breed Club as your first port of call.

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