German Shepherd Dog > Kennel bred vs small breeder questions (5 replies)
Kennel bred vs small breeder questions
by guddu on 16 February 2012 - 01:18
|Some of the large professional breeders, also offer their studs to suitable females, usually from smaller breeders. It struck me that the large breeders are forced to put their pups outside the house (due to many different litters at the same time), whereas the small breeder usually is able to keep the litter inside the house and "baby" the pups with affection etc. I was wondering what impact if any does this have on the temperament of the pup. Any experience ?.|
Second question is that the breeding I am looking at is a small litter of 3 (working line) at 4 weeks age. Two females and one male. Probably due to small litter size, they are well fed and plump puppies. I notice the two females play fight with each other quite a lot, but the male I am interested in is somewhat aloof from the other pups and rarely play fights. One factor might be that he is plumper and is somewhat wobbly in gait as compared to the other two. He is however quite friendly to humans and has excellent ability to focus (based on his attempts to persist with pulling the ball on a string). Does aloofness signify something ?.
by Darka on 16 February 2012 - 02:16
|I would say if the puppy is out of the large breeders kennel by 8 weeks, probably not much damage is done. A pup from a smaller breeder may be a bit more confident, or may have seen more, but then that is where the genetic temperament vs environmental temperament discussion could come in. If the puppy is kept longer and you buy it at, say, 8 months or a year, there could be issues. Dogs just simply not socialized, or not socialized enough.|
My main problem with large kennels is the lack of stimulation given to each individual dog. Dogs screaming when a human walks by, spinning, tail chasing and bounding from one kennel wall to the next are all things not cool with me. What happens to the breeding females that have been raised up by these larger kennels once they retire? How can these dogs go into pet homes easily when they are damaged mentally?
I personally will always buy from a small kennel.
by Cassandra Marie on 16 February 2012 - 04:42
|I believe it depends on the breeder's philosophy, i.e. what they hold important in terms of raising their puppies. |
Decades ago when we were in Afghan Hounds, we were involved with a top breeder who had approximately 50 dogs. She hired enough staff that for every 5 dogs, there was a caretaker. Each caretaker was responsible for their assigned dogs - keeping their kennels clean, keep the dogs groomed, dog bowls sterilized, puppies handled, etc. For this breeder, she wanted her dogs to be campaigned in the showring, so she made sure her pups were given opportunities to develop confidence.
On the other hand I have met a few people along the way that breed on a small scale and put very little time into their puppies. Primarily, these litters are a source of income and that's all. Attention may not be paid to keeping the environment clean and the pups have very little contact with humans.
My preference as a breeder is to stay on the small side. In part this is dictated by the fact that I work outside the home. My free time is limited, so I can use it best by only having one litter at a time. I put an extensive amount of time into our litters. My puppies are handled from day one and as they progress towards their new home placement, they are exposed to everything I can think of to prepare them for their new life. I find this makes for a well rounded dog that can meet the challenges that life brings. Staying as a small breeder, I have the opportunity to observe each puppy and determine if they need alittle extra attenion to fully develop their temperament. For example a less confident puppy will get more one-on-one attention. A dominant pup will be taught boundaries in their interaction with humans. Because many of my pups have been purchased for working, I intro them to tracking, cadaver, puppy runaways, etc. In this way, I feel I can best produce a beautiful, healthy and mentally stable dog that their new owner will be proud of. Each breeder, either on a large or small scale, has their own philosophy and method of raising their puppies. So I would recommend that rather than looking at the size of their breeding program, I would talk to each breeder and determine what they are trying to acheive in their breeding program.
Re: aloof male puppy - perhaps he is more people oriented rather than dog oriented. On the other hand he may become more interactive with his littermates as he gets older. Richter, my SAR K9, is aloof with other dogs. He's alpha and he doesn't feel the need to play with our other dogs. He would rather play with his humans - chase the kong, etc. Even as a puppy, he didn't feel the need to have an abundance of interaction with his littermates. It will be interesting to hear your observations of the male puppy as he gets older.
by Gusmanda on 16 February 2012 - 17:32
|hey Cassandra, that is a great post. Excellent example of a large kennel doing things well.|
by Cassandra Marie on 16 February 2012 - 18:29
|Thank you Gusmanda!|
Back in the 70's, the breeder I referred to took a 20 yr old girl (me) and my 22 yr old husband under her wing and mentored us in the right way of breeding, caring and raising dogs. I will forever be in her debt.
IMO, raising puppies is similar to raising children - it takes alot of work and dedication.
by Gusmanda on 17 February 2012 - 02:31
|IMO, raising puppies is similar to raising children - it takes alot of work and dedication.|
I completely agree, also both constantly test you to see what they can get away with all the time.