Tips for Finding a Good Breeder

If you are thinking about purchasing a new puppy for your family, here are some tips to ensure you get a good quality pet puppy:


Research the breed you are considering to make sure the puppy fits into your lifestyle and matches your family’s needs.

Find a good breeder!!  A good place to start is the American Kennel Club at .  If you are looking for a Yorkshire Terrier, also check out  the Yorkshire Terrier Club of America at .

Stay away from pet stores, newspaper ads, and beware of the internet websites selling puppies.  These are places that puppy mill and backyard breeder dogs are sold.  A puppy mill or backyard breeder does not accept responsibility for what they breed nor will they stand behind what they sell.  Check out our "What is a puppymill and backyard breeder" link.

Contact several breeders.  Look for a breeder who asks a lot of questions about you and your family, your lifestyle, and how you will care for your new puppy.  A good breeder wants to know that their puppy is going to a good home.

Find a breeder who requires you to sign a contract, and requires you to spay or neuter your new pet, and one who gives you a health guarantee.   The breeder should guarantee the puppy is free from congenital, hereditary, and life-threatening defects for the lifetime of the puppy.   

A good health guarantee should  include the details – find out what the breeder guarantees and for how long.  Life-threatening inherited problems should be guaranteed for the life of the dog.  There should not be a lot of exclusion in your health guarantee. 

Be patient – Good breeders usually have a waiting list for puppies.

Good breeders may also have adult breeding dogs that are spayed/neutered available for sale.  You may wish to consider an adult dog as a pet.

Avoid breeders who sell multiple breeds of dogs as this is usually a sign of a backyard breeder or a puppy mill.

Find a breeder who will let you visit their home to see the puppies.  Either the Mother or the Father should be on the premises when you go and visit.  The home should be clean.

Stay away from breeders who advertise “teacups” or “tinies or "micros” unless you are purchasing a poodle puppy.  The terms teacup, micro, tiny do not exist in many of the toy breeds.  This is a red flag and usually an indicator that you are not dealing with a good breeder.

Arrange a vet appointment prior to picking up your puppy.  Take your puppy directly to your vet office for a physical exam.  Make sure the breeder knows you are doing this and agrees to take the puppy back for a full refund if your vet finds any problems.

Ask a breeder for references.  Check out those references by calling other pet owners who have purchased a puppy from the breeder.




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