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Discussion Starter #1
First off I apologize if this has already been asked but I used the search function and couldn’t find any info.

We are looking to add a second Golden but I’m having a hard time finding a good Breeder in MI. We were wanting a lighter colored one with blockier head. We found Dumaw Creek in Pentwater MI (Nikki Adams) and Livingston English Cream GRs (Andrea & John Whitt).

Has anyone dealt with either and could give a recommendation? What’s everyone’s thoughts on $2,200 and $2,500, respectively?

Otherwise who do you guys recommend I check out any three hours from SE MI?
 

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Just do a search of English Creams or English Cremes and you will find that virtually all breeders that use this marketing term aren't reputable breeders.



At first glance their dogs seems to have their clearances in place but non of the dogs behind them do. Parents, Grandparents have some heart and eye but no hips or elbows. They appear to be doing the best they can but you don't know about the pedigree backing their dogs up. This likely means those dogs are from Europe.You're a little in the dark about how these lines are. They could have a lot of failed hips in the lineage. The reason I am not a big fan of these "Creams" from Europe is they test and breed much younger then they should be (before 2 years old) and a lot of the times they breed on prelims and not final certs. With this type of lack of verifiable health certs in the lines I would expect to pay between $1200 and $1800 for them. The breeder is maybe starting out and doing what they can to do the right things but the history is unknown in quite a bit of the dogs backing them up. But at least these breeders are doing what they can with the dogs they have. This might make the list of what some have labeled a B-list breeder and maybe working their way up the ladder so to speak. Still too much money for these pups in my opinion.



At $2k to $2.5k you can get dogs with full clearances, generations of verifiable health clearances and dogs that are titled. I would personally look for a handful of show breeders that maybe have lighter dogs, vet them very well to make sure of health certs and health of in the dogs backing them up (pedigree) and choose a breeding with some lighter colored dogs if color is important. But make color your LAST prerequisite. Looking for color is how you get into paying way to much for pups that aren't giving the best odds of being healthy long term.
 

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Dumaw- even though they display an OFA 'health tested' sticker on their front page, Swanavly By Chance has zero OFA clearances. They have no claims of hips/elbows on k9data, but they do claim he has been FCI tested on their site. They live in the US- why send to FCI? And if one does, the results should be sent to the US database for verification since there is no searchable FCI database. I'm not sure FCI does elbows. Though they advertise a bitch puppy availability they do not state sire and dam for this pup=
they breed everyone to their one dog (not the best strategy for producing stellar puppies) .
Mo-https://www.ofa.org/advanced-search?f=sr&appnum=1824053 No hips/elbows are claimed on k9data, and on their site they state OFA preliminaries- which are not final clearances and this bitch is well old enough to do finals.
Frilly- no OFA page, no k9data page.
This is not a breeder who is using best practices and unless you are willing to sacrifice safety for coat color, I would skip them for the very reason that OFA sticker states- health tested parents for healthier puppies... not sure why they have it on their site. It clearly isn't their focus.
 

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Discussion Starter #4
Thank you for your response! I’ve been reading a lot here and tried to find the pedigrees of the parents. Regarding the breeder starting out: I guess they’ve been around since 2011? Thanks for confirming they’re priced too high!

We are not looking first and foremost for color. We have a medium colored Golden and are looking for a pup to match his temperament and I don’t really care about the parents having titles as much as the health clearances.

How would you suggest I go about finding show breeders? I figured my local GR club but didn’t know if I was missing something
 

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Livingston - Colt is their only stud dog- again, not the best way to run a breeding program, as he cannot be the best choice for all their girls. Dogs have shortcomings, there are no perfect ones. Therefore, best practices is to find individuals who enhance one's bitch's good points and 'fix' her bad points. Colt's eyes are YEARS out of date, and he is no longer CHIC certified..a point they are proud of according to their website. One might think he should have current eyes so that claim is still accurate!
His dam had no verifiable clearances. His maternal grandparents had no verifiable clearances. His half sibs- at least one appears to have failed hips and one looks to have failed elbows out of 5 listed. https://www.ofa.org/advanced-search?f=sr&appnum=1940707 These are dogs owned by the Winklers so they are US dogs.

Abbey-since Colt X Abbey is the litter they are advertising- her eyes are out of date, her dam has no clearances.
Out of 8 half sibs (sire) at least one failed hips and I'd guess at way more if I were betting on it.
The one half sib (dam) on OFA has lots of holes in clearances.

I will let someone else discuss why this is you have found two ECGR breeders who do not use best practices... and let someone else make suggestions. Expect to travel far to find a good EC breeder. If you are set on staying in MI Livingston appears to be somewhat better than Dumaw,
 

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Hi again, I am not set on it having to be a EC. I just happened to find those two when looking for Golden’s and I am not ashamed to say I like that they’re lighter. I understand there’s a lot of hype around them and it’s harder to come by good breeders. I want a Golden with a blockier head but I came here to reach out and ask for recommendations on ethical breeders of sound program regardless of color, preferable in MI.
If I was set to just get a EC I would’ve already jumped the gun with one of the two breeders but it’s hard to find and judge who are good local breeders on the internet so I wanted everyone’s input. Thanks again!
 

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Malagold in Kalamazoo
 

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Kate
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First off I apologize if this has already been asked but I used the search function and couldn’t find any info.

We are looking to add a second Golden but I’m having a hard time finding a good Breeder in MI. We were wanting a lighter colored one with blockier head. We found Dumaw Creek in Pentwater MI (Nikki Adams) and Livingston English Cream GRs (Andrea & John Whitt).

Has anyone dealt with either and could give a recommendation? What’s everyone’s thoughts on $2,200 and $2,500, respectively?

Otherwise who do you guys recommend I check out any three hours from SE MI?
1. I had to google Pentwater, because I have no idea where that is. :) Looks like you are on the west side of the state.

There is a european line type breeder up in the Traverse City area who I would have recommended on the basis of them doing full clearances and bringing their dogs out to show at the local show on occasion.... except the current litter they have in the works - the mom has elbow dysplasia. :frown2: It really goes without saying - any breeder out there, you have to be very careful - even when they appear to have full clearances. Elbow dysplasia is a nightmare to deal with and some european lines seem more prone to it.

2. If you are just looking to purchase a puppy who is likely to have a nice big head when he grows up.... might want to drive the hour or so trip down to Kalamazoo next week.

Anney mentioned Malagold. You "shouldn't" see any Malagold bred dogs being shown on Thursday, however the breeder is judging goldens on that day. What this means (to me) is you are highly likely to see people bringing European line and similar style goldens to show to her.

Is Malagold the only breeder producing big heads.....? No. A lot of show breeders put nice heads on their list of things they want or want to keep.

It's not just size of head. You also want a head that nicely put together (ear set, shape of head, expression). Have seen dogs with big heads, but they look like bull dogs - their expressions are too coarse. Golden retrievers should have beautiful and sweet expressions.

The boy I just lost last fall - had a huge head (I loved it). He had English (actually English) lines buried behind him, but otherwise, he had older (what was more common in the 2000's when he was born vs what is very common today with what people are breeding here in MI) conformation lines behind him. I have a friend in OH who has his doppelganger and that dog came from a breeder in OH. This friend and I were really baffled looking at the lines behind both dogs, because we couldn't see anything in common. Her dog has Malagold lines and pretty big Malagold names directly behind him. Mine had no Malagold whatsoever. :)

Other thing too to keep in mind - heads/bone/muscle - all this requires hormones to develop/fill out over 3-4 years with these dogs. A lot of people are neutering/spaying prematurely - and basically, they don't know what they have or don't have in their dogs as a result.

3. $2000-2500 - that's what everyone is apparently charging. Or close to it. If you are paying that much - go with a dog with full clearances + get a nicely bred dog.
 

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Discussion Starter #10
@Megora thank you for the thorough reply. I’ve actually gotten another referral for Asoro’s in the GR area as well. I am actually in the Metro Detroit area but don’t mind traveling for a sound dog. I agree regarding the price and that at that point you should have great bloodlines. I have to admit our first Golden we found on Hoobly and the breeder had great reviews but I never bothered to look up the pedigree and trusted her when she said the testing and certs were in order. She had four generations of dogs in her stable and only bred a litter a year and he turned out great. This was 5 years ago and he was ‘only’ $750. But now I don’t want to tempt fate twice.

What event is going on next week where Malagold is judging? I’m really interested so what is it called and what day so I can research ?
 

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Kate
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Ah. Ok....

Connie @ Malagold is judging at the Kalamazoo shows over there at the big expo center. This is a big show cluster so Thurs through Monday. She's judging the first day.

Based on your location - would suggest contacting FDGRC. I heard something along the grapevine about somebody having a litter that's more European/Aus line. Mom is a Am CH and dad is a Can CH....

There are other people with litters as well or litters in the works who have nice dogs - FDGRC would be your best bet. And I do suggest heading out to Kalamazoo. It's a big show. Unfortunately, I'm not sure who all will be out in Kalamazoo next weekend. People get split between that show and one down in OH (Cinci) on the same weekend.

Asoro goldens = good. She's up north and her daughter is in the Metro Detroit area.
 

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Robin
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First off I apologize if this has already been asked but I used the search function and couldn’t find any info.

We are looking to add a second Golden but I’m having a hard time finding a good Breeder in MI. We were wanting a lighter colored one with blockier head. We found Dumaw Creek in Pentwater MI (Nikki Adams) and Livingston English Cream GRs (Andrea & John Whitt).

Has anyone dealt with either and could give a recommendation? What’s everyone’s thoughts on $2,200 and $2,500, respectively?

Otherwise who do you guys recommend I check out any three hours from SE MI?
Hi and welcome to the forum. You’ve received some great advice about what to look for and what to avoid, especially with breeders who are advertising their dogs as “English Creams” (not a real classification and I wish people would stop using it). Malagold is a wonderful breeder with a great depth of knowledge and experience, so she’s definitely worth reaching out to. If you really do have a preferance for a dog with a European pedigree, here are a couple of breeders in your area who might have what you’re looking for. None of these breeders necessarily specialize in cream colored goldens (reputable breeders do not consider color as a priority in their breeding decisions; health, temperament, structure, breed type, working ability, etc all should come first). But they do have dogs that are primarily from European pedigrees and several that are light in color. Of course, it’s always important to verify each litter plan and make sure that the parents’ clearances are all in place. Good luck in your search!
Robin

Michigan:
Brandegold

Illinois:
https://northernlovegoldenretrievers.com/

Wisconsin:
Cedar Goldens
 

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@HaliaGoldens: thank you so much! I actually had stumbled across BrandeGold before but wasn't able to gather much info on the website. I appreciate the input regarding English Cream as a term and implications about the breeders behind it. I believe I have some good leads with Asoro's, Malagold, Gazebo Golden's and BrandeGold at this point.

I love that you guys are so quick to point out the good and bad about the breeders, which is why I came here in the first place.
 

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We are not looking first and foremost for color. We have a medium colored Golden and are looking for a pup to match his temperament and I don’t really care about the parents having titles as much as the health clearances.

I have a male Golden Retriever from My Buddy Goldens which is located in MI. I can't say enough wonderful things about the breeder.
 

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I have a male Golden Retriever from My Buddy Goldens which is located in MI. I can't say enough wonderful things about the breeder.
OH man now my list of breeder's has grown to 5! I've reached out to all of them and I guess I'll go from there. I know the application process is quite rigorous for some of them.
 

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OH man now my list of breeder's has grown to 5! I've reached out to all of them and I guess I'll go from there. I know the application process is quite rigorous for some of them.

Also of note about Malagold's dogs. Connie has a very typy look to her Goldens. Dogs with a log of Malagold behind them are usually very easily spotted at shows among other dogs. She has a bit of English style influence. Strong heads without being to blocky and a more bone then the average American style but not losing that defines structure. I am a big fan of her Goldens looks personally.
 

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KSM - If you haven't already reached out to the breeders you've identified, you may want to do a bit more looking around this forum for suggestions about how best to contact a breeder to increase your chances of getting a response. Pretty universally, a brief "Do you have puppies? How much?" will get you no response. So might writing them a novel about your past history or what you want in your next dog. I think the ideal is somewhere in the middle - enough info to show you are a serious buyer who has given thought to what you want (and why you've chosen their breeding program or contacted them in particular), but not so much that they won't take time to read your response or think you'll be a "high maintenance" buyer. Read their website (if they have one) to see if they specify how they would like to be contacted and do your best to follow their requests (e.g., don't call if they specifically ask for email, fill out and send in their puppy application if they have one, etc.).

Another hint: If you reach out to the breeders you've already identified they may tell you they don't have any immediate breeding plans. If so, thank them for their response AND...

1) Ask what their breeding plans ARE. Maybe you innocently asked if they'll have a litter "this summer" (or mentioned some other criteria) and they answer "no," but don't mention they ARE planning a litter for the fall or winter or early in 2020... Better to get on "the list" for a breeder you are happy with than lose out because you casually mentioned some criteria that made them respond "no" without asking how flexible you are in that criteria.

2) If they honestly don't believe they'll be producing a litter that will have the type of puppy you are looking for any time in the near future, don't be afraid to ask for recommendations - either to litters or to breeders. Many of the best breeders don't have websites or any need to advertise, so you have to kind of know someone to find out about them.

Also - going to shows is a great way to start to ID breeders in your general area. You can use the "Events" search on the AKC website to find shows in your area.

And finally, if and when you find a potential breeder/breeding you are interested in, feel free to post again here with the dam and sire's registered names. This group is great about doing some sleuthing for you to determine if it looks like the dogs have all the appropriate clearances or if we see any other red flags!
 

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KSM - If you haven't already reached out to the breeders you've identified, you may want to do a bit more looking around this forum for suggestions about how best to contact a breeder to increase your chances of getting a response. Pretty universally, a brief "Do you have puppies? How much?" will get you no response. So might writing them a novel about your past history or what you want in your next dog. I think the ideal is somewhere in the middle - enough info to show you are a serious buyer who has given thought to what you want (and why you've chosen their breeding program or contacted them in particular), but not so much that they won't take time to read your response or think you'll be a "high maintenance" buyer. Read their website (if they have one) to see if they specify how they would like to be contacted and do your best to follow their requests (e.g., don't call if they specifically ask for email, fill out and send in their puppy application if they have one, etc.).

Another hint: If you reach out to the breeders you've already identified they may tell you they don't have any immediate breeding plans. If so, thank them for their response AND...

1) Ask what their breeding plans ARE. Maybe you innocently asked if they'll have a litter "this summer" (or mentioned some other criteria) and they answer "no," but don't mention they ARE planning a litter for the fall or winter or early in 2020... Better to get on "the list" for a breeder you are happy with than lose out because you casually mentioned some criteria that made them respond "no" without asking how flexible you are in that criteria.

2) If they honestly don't believe they'll be producing a litter that will have the type of puppy you are looking for any time in the near future, don't be afraid to ask for recommendations - either to litters or to breeders. Many of the best breeders don't have websites or any need to advertise, so you have to kind of know someone to find out about them.

Also - going to shows is a great way to start to ID breeders in your general area. You can use the "Events" search on the AKC website to find shows in your area.

And finally, if and when you find a potential breeder/breeding you are interested in, feel free to post again here with the dam and sire's registered names. This group is great about doing some sleuthing for you to determine if it looks like the dogs have all the appropriate clearances or if we see any other red flags!

@pawsnpaca: thank you so much for those tips! I've actually reached out to most of them with the amount of info you mentioned. I have removed two of them from consideration, one I am going to visit and I've also added Kyon Kennels due to their longstanding bloodlines and reputation to my list. Unfortunately Kyon's wait list is closed for 2019 (which is actually a great sign!) but they are going to open it back up in January and they were gracious enough to share recommendations of their own with me.

I will continue to update my progress on finding a good breeder that matches us. Thank you for all the great advice!
 
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