How soon is too soon to contact a breeder?

Discussion in 'Dogs - General Dog Chat' started by Laurelin, Feb 25, 2012.

  1. Laurelin

    Laurelin I'm All Ears

    Joined:
    Nov 2, 2006
    Messages:
    30,965
    Likes Received:
    3
    Trophy Points:
    0
    Occupation:
    a lot
    Location:
    Oklahoma
    Home Page:
    If I'm looking at a puppy in 2013 or possibly early 2014? I'd like to explore options a bit and research quite a bit. Meet dogs if possible in person and all that.

    How soon did you guys start trying to email breeders? I emailed Mia's breeder and then had her within a week. So I'm kind of hesitant to email just yet (lol).
     
  2. Equinox

    Equinox Active Member

    Joined:
    May 10, 2010
    Messages:
    3,046
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    36
    Gender:
    Female
    Location:
    Oregon
    I am probably not the norm but I am/was looking at a 2013 - 2014 timeline as well, and am pretty sure I first began e-mailing breeders around a year or a year and a half ago. Still in touch now and keeping up with this breeder's program and plans, but at this point I no longer think I'll be getting a dog from him (just a matter of having no dogs I am currently interested in, I am still keeping tabs, though). In my case, however, it was because he did not have a website nor did he advertise much at all, so I really would have had nothing to go on unless I contacted him.
     
  3. Fran101

    Fran101 Resident fainting goat

    Joined:
    Oct 12, 2008
    Messages:
    12,548
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    36
    Location:
    Boston
    I'd say as long as you are honest about your time frame, 2013-2014 is totally reasonable!
    I started contacting/talking to future pups breeder in december and will be getting said puppy hopefully around october so yea lol nearly a year!
    I was in the same kind of spot as you. I wanted to talk to the breeder and really get to know them, the dogs, their breeding philosophies, meet the dogs etc.. BEFORE litters/puppies were planned.
    I also wanted them to really get to know me and what I'm looking for in a dog/puppy (more-so than a questionnaire could really tell them)
    The way I saw it. I'd rather find a breeder that I LOVE and wait around for the right litter/puppy.. then wait til I'm ready for a puppy and have to run around doing questionnaires, looking at breeder websites til my eyes bleed, and feel pressured by litters on the ground already/waiting lists.

    The breeder I found was happy to talk with me, email, invite me to meet the dogs and really just talk for all this time. She keeps me updated on the on-goings and I'm really happy with the whole situation :)

    That said, when I had narrowed my potential breeder list down to 5... I emailed/questionnaired them all and got I think two "please email when you are closer to being ready for a puppy" kind of emails and that's fine, but it wasn't what I was looking for in a breeder..
    So keep in mind that some breeders DON'T really go with the whole "long term relationship" lol kind of thing with people.. and try to decide how important it is to you.
    I'd say 1-2 years is a totally acceptable timeframe. More-so even as long as you are honest about your time frame and what you want to talk to them about (breed info, their dogs, breeding philosophies, visit, etc..)
    I don't expect them to keep an IM chat convo with me at all times or answer my phone calls lol They are busy (with other people, raising dogs, showing, puppies, other potential homes for puppies) obviously.. but I do appreciate emails back/forth, even if replying takes them a while.

    Personally, a breeder without a very open communication policy was a no-go for me. So part of contacting so early was kind of just weeding out what I didn't want lol I wanted someone who was happy to talk dog and really wanted to get to know me and happy to answer my questions.. regardless of me not being able to put money down on the litter on the ground now, or the next one.

    Their answers are also a great way to get a FEEL of a breeder. Some breeders have the BEST websites and BEST reputations but you just..don't mesh.. and that was important to me. I spoke to a few who I just.. didn't like lol some have policies you aren't aware of until you speak to them etc..

    So might as well inquire now and find out, instead of pinning all your hopes on them, waiting all that time and then finding out they aren't what you expected them to be.
     
  4. Southpaw

    Southpaw orange iguanas.

    Joined:
    Jul 31, 2005
    Messages:
    7,788
    Likes Received:
    1
    Trophy Points:
    38
    Occupation:
    7
    Location:
    Minnesota
    It doesn't hurt to start now. When I started emailing BC breeders, letting them know that I was 2ish years away from being ready for a puppy... I'd say pretty much all of them told me to get in touch with them again when I was ready, or getting closer. But it's a good way to get a feel for a particular breeder and start weeding through them - and in my case, I ended up running into a couple that don't even breed anymore, and one that wouldn't sell a puppy to me. Those are nice things to get out of the way early on lol.

    But to be honest my early contact never led to anything productive, as far as getting to KNOW a breeder.
     
  5. Kat09Tails

    Kat09Tails *Now with Snark*

    Joined:
    Jun 10, 2010
    Messages:
    3,453
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    0
    Occupation:
    6 + finches
    Location:
    Upper Left hand corner, USA
    ^^ This... 6 months out or when a pairing is being announced is when I'd suggest it
     
  6. Laurelin

    Laurelin I'm All Ears

    Joined:
    Nov 2, 2006
    Messages:
    30,965
    Likes Received:
    3
    Trophy Points:
    0
    Occupation:
    a lot
    Location:
    Oklahoma
    Home Page:
    Mia's breeder was one that told me to come back closer to when I was ready for a dog. I think I emailed her a year before I got Summer, actually. I don't mind that at all and understand the sentiment behind it.

    One breeder though I'd like to contact so I can meet the breed in person before deciding on breed/breeders.
     
  7. Kat09Tails

    Kat09Tails *Now with Snark*

    Joined:
    Jun 10, 2010
    Messages:
    3,453
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    0
    Occupation:
    6 + finches
    Location:
    Upper Left hand corner, USA
    There's nothing wrong with this and I'd just present it as such. Honestly a short list is better than having your heart set on a particular breeder who may not be breeding when you're ready for a puppy.
     
  8. Saeleofu

    Saeleofu Active Member

    Joined:
    Oct 9, 2009
    Messages:
    9,036
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    36
    I started searching about 18 months before I was planning on getting a dog. That being said, I got a dog 6 months earlier than expected and from a breeder I had not ever contacted until I heard she had a dog available.

    I think it's fine to find and contact breeders well ahead of time. Sometimes breeders have long waiting lists, and you HAVE to get on them pretty early if you ever want a pup.
     
  9. porchpotty

    porchpotty New Member

    Joined:
    Aug 4, 2011
    Messages:
    259
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    0
    Well, the earlier the better so that you'll have more options to choose from.
     
  10. Romy

    Romy Taxiderpy

    Joined:
    Dec 2, 2006
    Messages:
    10,234
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    0
    Location:
    Olympia, WA
    Early is fine. I contacted Kaia's breeder almost two years ahead of time. She became a great friend and mentored me in the breed before I ever got a puppy from her. Like she helped me groom Strider for the borzoi specialty and taught me little tricks and stuff for how to do it well. She didn't have a litter available until two years after we met, so that was when I got one.
     
  11. Shai

    Shai & the Muttly Crew

    Joined:
    Dec 14, 2009
    Messages:
    6,216
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    0
    ^This. Worse case scenario they tell you to contact them again later. But many people I know keep a file of potential puppy people and that'd be one way to get your name in early, and they may have recommendations on other breeders to talk to. Unless you're really set on who you want a puppy from, I'd start exploring sooner rather than later. I mean just for example but we're looking at maybe a 2014 litter of Mirapups and there's already around 6 people on the list for that litter. Granted it depends if the right matches come along for each person but coming late to the party rarely improves your chances. Depends on the breeder/litter though.
     
  12. AdrianneIsabel

    AdrianneIsabel Glutton for Crazy

    Joined:
    Aug 29, 2010
    Messages:
    8,893
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    0
    Occupation:
    2 Pit bulls and 2 Malinois, We like to stay busy.
    Location:
    Portland, Oregon
    Home Page:
    No time is too early.
     
  13. Zoom

    Zoom Twin 2.0

    Joined:
    Jul 11, 2005
    Messages:
    40,739
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    0
    Location:
    Denver, CO
    I've been in contact with my breeder since like...2009. So I'd say it's never too early.
     
  14. Dekka

    Dekka Just try me..

    Joined:
    May 14, 2007
    Messages:
    19,779
    Likes Received:
    1
    Trophy Points:
    36
    Occupation:
    8 dogs and 6 horses.
    Location:
    Ontario
    Home Page:
    As a breeder I have to say I honestly am annoyed at the emails/phone calls that ask do I have any puppies. .. um no and if I did they should be spoken for.

    I would LOVE to have someone contact me years in advance about puppies. I don't breed all that often so that would work best IMO for everyone.
     
  15. Red Chrome

    Red Chrome New Member

    Joined:
    Oct 26, 2006
    Messages:
    1,568
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    0
    I agree with Adrianne! My next puppy will be coming in 2014-2015, I am already in contact with breeders that I am interested in. I also have been making contacts with breeders that run certain lines I like as well as that breed the way I feel it should be done! By contacting them now, I am setting myself up to hopefully be able to have first pick of the litter when the time comes.

    Also, certain breeds are different and breeders can be more guarded ab out their offspring than other breeds/breeders. Since I am looking at an AST and a certain line of ASTs, that limits my selection pool for puppies!

    IMO- I would rather contact a breeder years before I want a puppy and already have a good established relationship before my puppy is even conceived. I am at my limit with dogs right now as another one would throw my pack off as well as take significant time away from the current dogs which I just can not do. I recognize this and convey this to potential breeders while chatting with them, this helps assure them that I am looking at a dog for LIFE and to be ACTIVE in COMPETING with it, I feel this gives me an edge over some other type of buyers. Since I want to do sports with the future puppy and am obviously committed to it, this also gives me an edge as all good breeders like to see their puppies achieving titles!
     
  16. HayleyMarie

    HayleyMarie Like a bat outa' hell

    Joined:
    May 12, 2009
    Messages:
    7,058
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    0
    Location:
    Beautiful British Columbia!!
    I dont think its never too early. I want to establish a trusting realtionship with the breeder way before I get the pup. I want to make sure they are a breeder I have full confidence in. Remember if its a good responsible breeder they are going to be in your life the full life of your dog.
     
  17. Toller_08

    Toller_08 Active Member

    Joined:
    Apr 20, 2006
    Messages:
    8,359
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    36
    I contacted Toller breeders a year or two before getting Dance. I don't think it really worked to my benefit completely, but it certainly didn't hurt anything. It did show me who I clicked more with and who I didn't, though. There is one breeder here who is (IMO) everything a breeder should be and more, and I love her breeding program and her dogs. However, in person, we just don't mesh well at all. I can be shy and I found her to be very intimidating, and I feel like she hates me... though I really don't know. So that was kind of unfortunate as our e-mail conversations went well and I would've loved one of her puppies, but I also need to be comfortable with somebody in person.

    Next time around I plan on contacting breeders a year (maybe two) in advance again. And, depending on the breed I get, I am planning to expand my breeder search much further than I was able to last time. Chances are my next dog, regardless of breed, will be out of province and it's very likely that they'll be out of country all together. So I want to be able to allow ample time to get to know a breeder/let a breeder get to know me a bit and I also want to be able to travel to meet a breeder and their dogs in person before I decide for sure I want one of their puppies. I want a comfortable breeder/owner relationship next time around. My experience getting Dance has taught me a lot about what I want from my next (and all future) dog's breeder, and I will try my best to make sure I get it. At this point I don't know for sure when I'll be able to get another dog, but I'm kind of hoping for 2015/16. Just depends on where I'm living and what's going on for me school/career wise. Especially since all of the breeds I am considering are going to be very time consuming (Koolie, Aussie, Border Collie or another [drivier and higher energy than Dance] Toller).
     
  18. Teal

    Teal ...ice road...

    Joined:
    Jun 19, 2011
    Messages:
    1,497
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    0
    Occupation:
    A lot!!
    Location:
    Northern California
    Home Page:
    I don't think any time is too early! Some breeders will be receptive to getting to know you in advance, others won't... but you won't know unless you try!

    I was emailing with Bukra's breeder for several years before I got him. She got to know me as a person and what I like in my dogs, and ended with me getting the absolute most perfect puppy for me!

    On the other hand, I was in contact with Zealand's breeder for only several months before the litter was bred (though I'd been stalking her website for years lol). Yet she still learned about me and what I needed in a dog in that time frame, and again I got the perfect dog for me!

    A friend of mine contacted a breeder about a litter... the breeder responded a few times, then fell off the face of the earth. My friend was sorely disappointed. But then over a year later, the breeder contact her, asking if she was still interested in a puppy. It turned out the original litter never took, and they waited to try it again.

    Each breeder operates differently! So I'd say, start contacting and see what happens!
     
  19. spottyspaniel

    spottyspaniel New Member

    Joined:
    Feb 27, 2012
    Messages:
    23
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    0
    Occupation:
    3 - One dog, two cats
    Location:
    Connecticut
    Never too early. I have been in contact with a potential ESS breeder for over a year now, and I am still at least, a couple years out from actually getting a puppy, or a younger started adult.
     

Share This Page