Sometimes, adoption isn't the answer for your family. Perhaps there are no bulldog adoption options in your area, or your have your heart set on a puppy. Whatever the reason, you made the decision to welcome a Bulldog into your family. While you are busy preparing your home with dog beds, dishes, toys and other necessities, begin your search for your new family member. There are a wide variety of dog breeders in every community. But your goal is to find a responsible Bulldog breeder. The following tips will guide you on your journey to locating a reputable dog breeder.
· Ask Around: Do you know a family member, friend or co-worker that has a Bulldog? Ask them if they can recommend a responsible breeder. You can also contact local veterinarian offices to see if they are able to refer you to a reputable Bulldog breeder, or go through the American Kennel Club to pick one of their registered breeders. Even forums like Bulldogsworld or sites dedicated to bulldogs are great places to ask for opinions. These are people who have been around and know who is reputable.
· Beware Scams and Puppy Mills: Along with breeders who want to better the breed, there are people who just want to make a buck with unhealthy Bulldog puppy. Ask a bully owner you trust to go through the process with you. They'll have tips and contacts that will ensure you take the right path to a reputable breeder.
· Contact the Breeders: Contact the Bulldog breeders over the telephone or via email. Ask them about their credentials, practices and if or when they will have Bulldog pups available.
· Visit the Breeders: Bring your notebook along as you visit various Bulldog breeders. You will want to carefully observe the home or facility the breeder keeps the dogs and pups in during their earlier years. You are looking for cleanliness, proper necessities such as food, water, bedding and toys. If you notice that the breeder has more than two dogs breeding at one time, there may be a chance that they might be a puppy mill. And be sure to meet the mother and father of the pup – they need to be onsite.
· Choose the Breeder: Once you locate a breeder that is friendly, knowledgeable of the breed and provides good care for the litter, you will want to choose a Bulldog pup from that breeder. Remember reputable and responsible Bulldog breeders interview you and make sure you are able to care for the pup properly throughout his or her lifetime.
· Request Health Documentation: Responsible breeders will be able to provide documentation from a veterinarian regarding the health of the pup. Usually breeders offer this information upfront, but during the excitement of it all they may forget, make sure you ask them for the document to assure you are getting a healthy Bulldog pup.
· Be Patient: Many responsible Bulldog breeders will prolong the process to make sure you are a perfect fit for the pup. While this may aggravate you, it is actually a positive characteristic of the breeder. It means they care and this shows they are responsible with the placement of each pup and that they go to good homes.
Always ask the breeder questions regarding the health history of the parents of the pups. If there are genetic health issues, you will want to take note, since the same problems can arise during the lifetime of the pup you choose. Most responsible breeders will also offer further assistance after you bring your pup home. They will usually offer their phone number or email address to keep in touch and also to answer any questions about proper care for Bulldogs to assure you are a great pet parent.
Photo credit: Steve Thornton/Flickr