Should dog breeders allow home visits? Our short answer is yes, without any doubt. But let’s go into further details.
When buying a puppy, you may worry about whether you are buying a suitable puppy? Whether the breeder is being honest and is this dog suitable for your home?
Similarly, for breeders, you will want to make sure that you meet the possible owners of your puppies. Also that you are safe inviting strangers into your home. It is important for owners to feel like they are picking the appropriate puppy to be a new family member. This can be helped through home visits to see the puppy’s parents and their behavior in a natural environment.
Advantages of Allowing Home Visits for Puppy Buyers
Home visits possess multiple benefits to the potential owner and breeder. Making sure the dog is appropriate for your family can prevent rehoming and returning. Owners can check the breeders are reputable and see the parent’s behavior and size. Breeders can also check that buyers have good intentions.
Buyers can meet the puppy’s parents
Meeting the puppy’s parents allows you to imagine what your potential dog may be like in the future. This can be beneficial for sizing comparisons in homes. For example, a one-bedroom flat may not be able to care for a Great Dane appropriately. You can also see fur types and coloring definitions on your dog’s coat through the parents. Which may be important if you wish to compete in dog competitions in the future. Behavior can also be predicted by meeting the parents of your puppy. If you want a high energy dog or one with a calm temperament it is important to meet the parents as these traits are regularly passed on genetically.
Perhaps most importantly though, seeing that your dog breeder has both parents in their possessions in high health and of happy nature can minimize the possibility of the puppy being from a puppy mill. Thereby helping to confirm the puppy has been treated well, is sourced ethically and the breeder has been honest.
Breeders can screen potential buyers
Breeders deserve to feel comfortable and confident when choosing new owners for their puppies. Allowing them to have a home visit can be a screening process. In which the breeder can see the potential owner(s) interacting with the puppies. This will allow the breeder to identify odd behaviors such as the owner seeming distant from the puppy or joking about negligence, such as hitting the dog to be quiet. These can be labeled as warning signs.
Other warning signs may include the owner’s confidence level with the puppies. First-time owners may be nervous or overly cautious, but this behavior is noticeably different from the owner seeming distant. Remember, it is completely okay to quiz prospective owners on their motives. You can also detail what goes in your puppy pack or contract, too. This process is all about what is best for the puppy and any good owner will understand that. If they are uncomfortable with this, it could be considered a further warning sign. Both owners and breeders should be happy with this process and if they are not, their intent may not be focused on the puppy’s welfare.
Buyers can pick the right puppy for them
Household visits can also allow an owner to make a personal choice of dog. Future owners can see each puppy being sold in a litter and pick the individual that is appropriate for them. There are multiple behavioral and physical traits that you should be aware of to pick a high-quality dog and one suited for your home and family.
When choosing your dog, seeing how they interact with their siblings and yourself can give you an insight into their personality and future behavior. Check your puppy for confidence as this makes socializing and training easier, be careful that this does not progress into aggression. Although trainable, it may not be the type of dog suitable for your home. Puppies with high levels of anxiety can have their behavior progress to aggression, which can be a problem in a household with young children. Also be sure to check for any visible health issues such as injuries, limps or vomiting. Therefore, dog breeders should allow home visits for better owner and puppy pairings.
Buyers can ensure it’s not a backyard breeder
Backyard breeders are breeders with little knowledge, experience or proper care towards their dogs and puppies. These breeders usually have unhealthy animals, poorly trained puppies and are reluctant to give home tours or show references. This is because you can see poor standards of care and are less likely to purchase a puppy. All signs of backyard breeders will be covered up because they are red flags.
Firstly, if a breeder denies a home visit, this is one of the biggest red flags. Backyard breeders will not want you to visit because they may have poor conditions in the house in order to breed multiple dogs with less effort required.
Also, note that if a breeder is breeding multiple breeds in the same area with low care, their motivation may ultimately be for money. This often displays a lack of care for the dogs and puppies. A further precaution is gaining reputable references from the breeder to ensure their motives and longevity in the industry.
Disadvantages of Allowing Home Visits for Puppy Buyers
We recommend home visits as not doing so can be a large red flag for buyers. However, there are a few disadvantages for breeders to do so. Two of these main points include breeders having to give up their privacy and the chance of them being robbed in the future.
Breeders have to give up their privacy
If you breed your dogs at home, this is the area you will have to present to the potential buyers. This can be frustrating and time-consuming as you will regularly have to tidy your home and present yourself formally to new people. Furthermore, as breeding can be a business, you would have to plan regularly and at any time of the day to adjust for the potential owners’ visit. Many owners will only be able to visit after work so this means your hours may be from 5 pm onwards. It can be both time-consuming and mentally demanding as you may never really get time away from the job. Between caring for the dogs and the puppies, advertising and caring for visitors at all times, it can be quite exhausting.
Alongside this, you may want to have breaks for a weekend or go on holiday, but if this interferes with visiting times of potential buyers, you may lose money. If home visits were not required, you could easily drop off the puppy with little preparation as the agreement was already installed.
Chance of breeders being robbed
One of dog breeders’ biggest concerns when allowing regular strangers into their home is the chance of them being robbed. When you allow potential buyers into your home, you are permitting them to look around the entrances, ornaments and other high financial goods (including champion dogs or popular studs). This would allow them to know how to get in and what is worth stealing from the location.
It is unlikely anyone would attempt this due to the dogs barking and waking you up upon their entry. However, it is also possible that they are entering your home to plan a robbery of the puppies you are selling. There would still be a risk of you being awoken by their barking or yipping. But with an understanding of the layout of the house, this risk would be minimized. You can avoid this risk by installing anti-theft cameras and lighting. Also, mention the precautions in conversation to those who come to visit the puppies.
Ultimately, we support dog breeders allowing home visits to see the puppies as it can benefit all parties involved. It also allows for a happier safe home for the sold puppy. It does come with minimal risks, but those can be combated by any basically- prepared breeder.