Good Questions Any Reputable Breeder Would be Pleased to Answer

  1. Do you belong to the English Springer Spaniel Field Trial Association, a local Springer club, or an all-breed club?
  2. May I see the parent(s) of this litter? What factors influenced your decision to make this breeding?
  3. Do you show your dogs? In conformation? Field trials? Hunting tests? Obedience, tracking or agility events?
  4. Have all puppies in this litter had their eyes examined by a veterinary ophthalmologist? Have both parents' eyes been certified as normal by a veterinary ophthalmologist within the last year? Are both parents' hips x-rayed and read as normal? By what authority? Are there any known hereditary problems within this pedigree?
  5. May I see your kennel, and meet your other dogs?
  6. Will you provide me with vaccination/worming records, a 3 - 5 generation pedigree, a contract of sale, and an AKC individual registration form?
  7. Will you provide written instructions for feeding and care of my puppy or dog?

A reputable, responsible breeder will show you a clean environment, healthy, well socialized puppies, and a dam (and sire, if owned by the breeder) with good temperament. A Springer with good temperament should be friendly, easy-going, and relaxed. Be cautious about any breeder who must make excuses for the behavior of his/her dogs.

A reputable, conscientious breeder will not sell a puppy under seven weeks of age, as early separation from the dam and littermates can be very detrimental both psychologically and physically.

If a breeder meets these expectations and answers these questions fully and willingly, you should be in good hands. If you want to request references, a responsible breeder should readily supply you with the names of previous puppy buyers, and the names of other breeders, who can be called upon as references.

What will a reputable breeder expect of you?

A reputable, responsible breeder will have questions for you as well. He/she will want to know if you've owned Springers, or dogs of other breeds; whether you have a fenced yard; and whether the dog will be allowed to be a member of your family. Reputable breeders will want to know more about you, your interests, and your expectations before selling you a puppy.

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