If you want a quality Rottweiler for a companion, show or working dog then you must find a reputable and responsible breeder that is dedicated to producing sound, quality companions as well as working and show dogs. Be prepared to spend time researching breeders and their dogs and don't be afraid to ask questions and demand proof of the breeder's claims. This is your right and your responsibility.
The internet has made it much easier for people to search for a breeder for a new puppy but unfortunately there are no "Truth in Advertising" laws for internet dog breeder websites. It is very easy to hire a professional webmaster to build a fancy, glitzy website to attract puppy buyers and equally easy to make false claims of heritage, titles and health certifications. It is also very common for breeders to take photographs of a beautifully manicured section of their home or one or two clean kennels to represent the living conditions of dogs when the reality is the dogs live in nasty, filthy conditions.
It is easy to provide testimonials of a few customers that are happy with the dogs they purchased (because nothing bad happened to them or their dog) when the reality is they have had many complaints from unhappy customers when the breeder didn't stand behind the ones that had health problems, or they were not as the breeder represented or they didn't turn out as promised by the breeder. Breeders can have lawsuits currently filed against them, judgments against them, even liens on their homes and they are not going to tell you about these things or advertise these issues on their website!
It is well worth the time to meet your breeder in person, meet their dogs and observe their devotion to the breed and the care and condition of their dogs and puppies. If this is not possible, then ask the breeder to provide references of people that have seen the breeder's practices and efforts firsthand.
Beware of breeders with pay pal buy now buttons on their websites. This is a clear indication that the breeder has no concern for where their puppies go, the only concern is payment. Reputable and responsible breeders screen potential homes!
The ultimate goal of a reputable and responsible Rottweiler breeder must be to produce and maintain sound, healthy, strong, confident, intelligent, beautiful, quality Rottweilers for the preservation and betterment of the breed in accordance with the breed standard.
The ASPCA Says:
"Responsible breeders are individuals who have focused their efforts on one or a select few breeds and through breeding, historical research and ongoing study, mentoring relationships, club memberships, showing, raising and training of these breeds have become experts in the breed’s health, heritable conditions, temperament and behavior. Responsible breeders are well suited to educate and screen potential buyers/adopters and provide follow-up support after purchase or adoption. Responsible breeders take lifetime responsibility for the animals they have bred."
"The last few years have seen a great deal of focus and criticism on the practices of commercial breeders. Within the fancy we are quick to differentiate ourselves, calling ourselves responsible breeders striving to preserve and improve the breed. However, the term responsible breeder is one that is earned, not assigned based on number of litters bred, or mere participation in AKC events. Complacency over health issues, especially when in pursuit of the blue ribbon, equates to irresponsibility. As responsible breeders, we must recognize health issues where they exist, educate ourselves on the issues, and incorporate health issues into our breeding selection criteria with a specific goal of reducing inherited disease. In addition to the OFA, canine health databases are maintained by CERF, PennHIP, parent clubs, and by several leading research institutions and universities. All breeders are urged to breed responsibly and use these tools for the improved genetic health of our purebred dogs."
A reputable and responsible breeder....
* Trains, works, shows and titles their own dogs.
* Believes that working ability, temperament, health and breed type are all equally important.
* Has gone to great lengths to prove that their dogs used for breeding are worthy of being bred as evidenced by their dog's certifications and accomplishments and will provide documentation of those accomplishments.
* Will take time to educate anyone that shows a desire to learn about the breed.
* Will be willing to share their knowledge and beliefs about ownership, medical care, training, behavior, working, showing, breeding, nutrition, health, resources or just about any other question that someone might have about their dogs or the breed in general.
* Will always welcome you into their home, allow you to meet all of the dogs and see how the dogs are cared for and where they live.
* Has thorough knowledge of the known genetic disorders of the breed and only breeds animals that are certified to be free of hereditary genetic diseases by the appropriate authority and make a serious effort to reduce the overall incidence of hereditary diseases that exist in the breed.
* Will do everything possible to ensure that they only produce sound, healthy, quality puppies with proper working ability and breed type.
* Will raise puppies in the best way possible in regards to diet, exercise, socialization and veterinary care.
* Will provide lifetime support for each and every puppy they produce. This includes taking the time to discuss behavior, training, diet, health or any other questions their puppy owners may have.
* Will guarantee the health of their puppies with a WRITTEN contract, not with a verbal promise or a handshake.
* Will only produce a few quality litters per year.
* Will recommend another good breeder to you if they are not planning a breeding in the near future.
* NEVER has an accidental or unplanned breeding.
* Will charge a reasonable amount of money for their pups in an attempt to balance the expenses of their breeding program, a reputable breeder does not produce puppies to make a profit and does not make a living from their dogs.
Is your potential breeder right for you?
If you have been communicating with breeders that meet none of the above criteria then you should immediately look elsewhere for your puppy. If you have been talking to breeders that meet some, but not all of the criteria, you should seriously ask yourself what criteria are they falling short on, why, and is it worth the risk. If you have found the breeder that is described above then congratulations, you are on your way to owning a healthy, happy, quality puppy with a quality breeder to support you for the life of that puppy.
If you can not afford to buy a quality puppy from a reputable and responsible breeder then PLEASE get a dog or puppy from an animal shelter or Rottweiler rescue. Rescues are always originally purchased from back-yard breeders and puppy mills anyway! DO NOT support puppy mills and back yard breeders, if buyers continue to purchase dogs from them, they will continue producing inferior dogs. It is the responsibility of buyers to break the cycle and put these disgusting "breeders" or more correctly "greeders" and puppy farmers out of business. It is very simple. Puppy mills, brokers, pet stores and back-yard breeders have only one priority - to make a profit. If there is no demand they can not make a profit and if they can not make profit they will stop breeding. Innocent families buy these puppies only to find that the puppy is very ill or has genetic or temperament problems. Often the puppies die at a young age from genetic disease and many others have medical problems that cost thousands of dollars. Don't bring this misery into your home.
Anyone can call themselves a "Code of Ethics", "Reputable" or "Responsible" breeder, it means absolutely nothing, until the breeder's ethics are tested. It's simply a matter of integrity.
"Breeding is the expression of your love of dogs and
your personal pursuit in creating an art."
Jonathan Jeffrey Kimes
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