Purebred Dogs from Reputable Breeders Do Exist

dog mom

Fidose of Reality has been making the media rounds to bring all the news and info that dog lovers of the highest order, like you, demand. When the Associated Press (AP) came knocking to asking us about purebred dogs and why the Cocker Spaniel owns our heart, we had to rejoice and answer them!

Labrador Retrievers, Cocker Spaniels, and Poodles have been some of the most popular purebred dog breeds in the United States for a total of 67 of the 128 years that the AKC has been counting the data, according to the AP article. In all, more than 40 million purebred dogs have been registered with AKC since 1884.

Purebred or mutt, reputable breeder or rescue, we have a love affair with dogs, and certainly my career choice and passion for them fits right into that mantra. I cringe, though, because though I am a fan of Westminster Kennel Club and I cover it every year for media (this year is no exception), I actually don’ t want my dog’s breed to be popular. See, popular breeds find their way into the breeding programs of both amazing and horrible breeders. I have rescued dogs and saved my last little girl from a puppy mill nightmare. My dog, Dexter, is from a reputable breeder. He found me, you see, and through a series of events, 30 days after losing my Brandy Noel, cocker puppieshe found his way to my heart. We were meant to be. I did my research, I talked to the breeder, I went on site, I met the mom and littermates, and I was interviewed extensively before I could have one of her babies. This is the face of a reputable breeder.

Then I read horror stories like this one from my friends at Oldies But Goodies Cocker Spaniel Rescue. OBG shares, “These 9 dogs are in some of the worst shape we have ever seen! They have feces-caked mats, cloudy eyes, and infected ears. Please share their story and donate what you can to help them heal.” For the weak of heart, I won’t post their photos here, but if you can chip in and help them, a Chip-In fund has begun. These dogs ALL came from a backyard breeder of Cocker Spaniels.  This type of things happens with all breeds. So if you want a reputable breeder, do your homework, please.

So popularity will mandate and dictate what the general public demands. Puppy millers and horrid backyard breeders must be shut down. Puppy mills are selling thousands of dogs online. Dogster magazine covered this topic and it is really worth reading. Dogster magazine’s editor (Janine Kahn), like myself, both have a dog who came from a very reputable breeder. I stopped trying to justify that I did this and knowing I do help rescue dogs, foster dogs, I fundraise, and I am half the equation in this year’s Wigglebutt Wedding to raise funds for Cockers in need, I thwart negative comments that sometimes get tossed my way.

Half of the Wigglebutt Wedding duo is Zoe, the bride. Zoe was rescued the day she was scheduled to be euthanized by Life’s Little Paws. Zoe and Dex will fun fundraise for dogs in need and all proceeds from their event will go to help Life’s Little Paws do their work and save lives daily.

Meantime, my passion for Cocker Spaniels continues. They are eternal bundles of joy and under that fur is an eternal 3-year-old waiting to emerge. My heart beats dog™- always has, always will.

fidose of realityHere’s the piece from the AP if you’d like to check it out: Lifestyle, Pop Culture Drive Dog Breed Popularity.





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  1. Carol, good post. We currently have two rescues & have had rescues for many years now, altho we did purchase a lab puppy about 15 years ago. I considered it recently when our sweet Becca passed, but I really struggled with not only the issue of ‘buying’ a puppy and not rescuing, but in knowing whether the breeder was reputable or not. If you look online everyone looks so clean & health & happy. I thought maybe an indicator would be number of breeding moms they had…more than 2-3 seemed suspicious to me…and how many current litters of pups did they have? I am TOTALLY against puppy mills, and we ended up adopting Maggie who actually came to us as a breeding mom from a mill (or hoarder)…but those pups need homes too. Yes, it’s important to send a message to the puppy mills by not supporting them…but once the pups are born, they need a home. How do we reconcile that?

    1. Thanks, Kate. Therein is my dilemma, too. We don’t want to support puppy mills, right? My first Cocker was a puppy mill rescue. I believe until laws are tougher and legislation is passed for dogs, it will never change. I wrote this about visiting Lancaster, too, where I was in shock: http://www.dogster.com/the-scoop/amish-country-pennsylvania-puppy-mill-capital-lancaster?utm_source=feedburner&utm_medium=feed&utm_campaign=Feed%3A+DogsterForTheLoveOfDogBlog+%28Dogster+For+The+Love+of+Dog+Blog%29

  2. Yes dogs from reputable breeders DO exist and I have one! I also often feel as if I have to apologize for having bought my dog but the situation at the time warranted it! I also donate, promote and care about homeless animals (and my cat IS adopted)…….people need to not judge

  3. Great post Carol!

    I met a young woman at a pet conference in NYC a couple of years back, the event was held during the big Westminster dog weekend. During the luncheon an official of Westminster announced they had added a certain number of new recognized breeds to their list. This young woman told me, I cringe every time they add new dogs because I know what happens. People over-breed and then shelters get over-whelmed.

    I try over and over to educate people about responsible breeders, but most people don’t understand it.

  4. I think the bad rap reputable breeders gets sucks. There are so many, I’ve met breeders who I want to buy a puppy from and I vowed to only rescue. Locally, we have a lot of people who are breeding that really shouldn’t be and they don’t understand the stakes. The more we discuss these issues, the better educated our communities will become.

    1. I definitely know there are very good breeders out there. My 20 years of dog travel and talking to people, interviewing people, and as a dog writer and blogger, I’ve met them. There are scores and scores of bad breeders, puppy mills, etc. With dialogue and talking about it, I agree with you. I have rescued and I continue to help rescue. I am pro dog. Thankful I did my research and encourage others to do the same.

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