Golden Retriever Dog Forums banner

1 - 20 of 24 Posts

·
Registered
Joined
·
14 Posts
Discussion Starter #1
Hello Everyone!

I’m relatively new to the forum and have found it to be a great resource in our search for a puppy….and I’m sure it will continue to be a great resource as the little guy (to be) grows up in our home.

My husband and I are looking for our first golden retriever puppy. We’ve been married a little over a year however we’ve been in a relationship for nearly seven years. We are as ready as we’ll ever be to take on the puppy challenge! My parents have an eight year old golden retriever (in my photo) who we love dearly…..so we know the breed is exactly what we want.

We are currently researching several breeders that we’ve seen recommended on this site but yesterday my mother saw an ad posted in a local paper for 11 week old golden puppies.

http://www.gadzoo.com/roanoke/ad.aspx?id=154463978 the ad includes some cute photos and the following information: (or you can see the ad for yourself by clicking the link)
Website Ad (additional information)
These Boy's will be very nice. I also have a sister to them. They are up to date on all their shot's, and has been vet check. I also give a written warranty on hip's eye's and heart. The parents are on premises. Call or e-mail for more details. Thanks.

Original Newspaper Ad
GOLDEN RETRIEVERS AKC reg., male pups, half English, half American, the dad of these boys is English, he has been OFA tested and his hips were rated good & elbows normal. His daddy is a son of an International Grand Champion & was imported from Russia. The mother of these boys is American & her pedigree has a lot of titled dogs in it, these boys will be nice. $700 each. 540-268-2093, 540-580-9896.
My concerns are clearance and the age of the puppies as we’d ideally like to get them as soon as they are allowed to leave their mother (maybe someone can pass some insight on whether or not age should be a concern). I also hate to simply turn my nose up at a “backyard breeder” because I’d like to think they have good intentions and simply do this for the love of the breed and more as a hobby. But maybe it’s just that…it needs to be more than a hobby to be done properly.

We sent an email to ask about clearances and they responded saying they are vet checked and they also have warranty on hips, eyes, and heart. I know understand it’s very important to have these clearances but I can’t help not considering the price. These pups are $700 where most pups we’ve inquired about are $1,500 to $2,000. We are talking about a possible $1,300 difference!

Additionally this is somewhat appealing because we will be driving through Elliston (where the puppies are located) next Thursday and Friday and we will be in Blacksburg, Virginia for the Virginia Tech Football game on the 17th. We are definitely not in a major rush to get our puppy but it sure is exciting to think we could have one in the next week and not have to wait a few months.

Anyways I have been thinking about this nonstop so I am hoping that I might get some good feedback from the forum. Please let me know your thoughts.

I apologize for the long-winded post but thank you so much in advance for your time and advice!!!
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
33,267 Posts
If the puppies have the right clearances, then there shouldn't be a problem.

Do you have the registered name of the dam and sire. You can look up their clearances yourself on K9data and OFA. I'd advise you check the clearances BEFORE you see the puppies. Puppy breath has a way of intoxicating grown men and women into buying a puppy. ;) Remember the healthy pups are just as cute, come with a better chance in life and are worth waiting for.

Anytime you buy without clearances you are taking a chance on have problems as the dog ages in any of the areas in which clearances are advised. There's not a certainty that you WILL have problems if the clearances aren't done but you sure do cut down the odds when all the clearances are done and proper.

Remember the kind of trouble you can run into isn't necessarily fatal to the dog. It can mean a painful life, it can be expensive and it can mean the difference between a Golden who fully participates in all the activites the family does or a Golden who has to sit on the sidelines and just watch. How sad is that?
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
271 Posts
I, too, was initially thinking we'd get a newspaper puppy when I first started the puppy search. Then I started to think about my mother's newspaper German Shepherd who has hip dysplasia - he's in constant pain, and she's spent so much money on him. I also thought about the cat we lost at 5 years old from lymphoma...

I know getting a puppy from a breeder isn't a guarentee, but I am willing to spend as much as I have to up front to potentially save myself heartache down the road. A lot of breeders I talked to that were recommended to me from the Potomac Valley Golden Retriever club were around $1200, and people had puppies available now. $500 doesn't seem like all that much more to me, in the grand scheme of things.

Also, $700 seems expensive for a backyard breeder (if the puppy is from a backyard breeder) - the newspaper Goldens in my area go for $200-$300....
 

·
Tracer, Rumor & Cady
Joined
·
10,683 Posts
Whats the saying: "The road to he!! is paved with good intentions. ;-)
These are breeders that are going to accept your hard earned cash.
Be smart about it...and be honest with yourself.

There are many, many backyard breeders that are breeding for profit...and give the state of the economy...that number is likely to rise...

Backyard breeders are NOT hobby breeders. Hobby breeders spend TONS of time and money investing in their hobby.

The earliest that a pup should leave is 49 days after birth...ideally 56 days or more. In some states it is not lawful to sell younger then 56 days.
 
  • Like
Reactions: Kimberly208

·
Hi, I'm Wendee
Joined
·
1,733 Posts
The thing that I would really be worried about is heart clearances. I have heard too many stories of goldens with a genetic heart conditon that just drop dead when they are very young. I'm sure that 500.00 extra dollars would seem like nothing if you could keep from having a dog you have fallen in love with suddenly die. Here is some info on what I'm talking about.

Hereditary Heart Disease

Subvalvular Aortic Stenosis (SAS), a hereditary heart disease, is known to occur in the Golden Retriever breed. Congenital Aortic Stenosis is believed to be the most common heart defect in large breed dogs. Aortic Stenosis is a narrowing of the outflow channel between the left ventricle and the main artery of the body, the aorta. This can occur at the level of the aortic valve (valvular); above the aortic valve, in the aorta (supravalvular); or below the aortic valve, in the ventricle (subvalvular) — this is the most common. The cause of Aortic Stenosis is believed to be genetically inherited.
Symptoms can vary from no signs at all to sudden death. Dogs with mild stenosis will generally show no clinical effects and have a normal life expectancy. In most cases, an abnormal sound of the heart (a systolic murmur), detected by stethoscope, is the only finding. With moderate to severe stenosis, signs may vary. Some dogs may show signs of exercise intolerance or fainting. As the condition progresses, symptoms may include difficulty in breathing, coughing, abnormal heart rythms, and sudden death.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
4,873 Posts
A backyard breeder is not what people are referring to when they talk about "hobby breeders." Hobby breeders are active in competing with their dogs, breed to improve the breed, breeds a litter for a reason, knowledgeable about the breed, knowledgeable about health issues, etc. etc. I could go on and on about why you should buy a puppy from a true hobby breeder.

Backyard breeders operate in a bubble and breed for the sake of breeding and for the money. They'll brag about the titles in a pedigree but don't achieve any of the titles themselves. And honestly, the grand-sire being an "international grand champion" doesn't mean much in terms of the quality of the dog or the pedigree itself. International championships are not even on the same planet as attaining an AKC championship. I'd challenge you to ask them why they bred the litter and see what response you get. I imagine it'll be something along the lines of "our dogs are beautiful and sweet and we thought they'd make nice puppies" or "we wanted our children to see the miracle of birth." The ad says these puppies will be "nice." What does that even mean to them? They don't compete with their dogs, and honestly, their perception of what "nice" is in terms of goldens really doesn't mean much. They have no frame of reference.

If you ask a true hobby breeder why they bred a litter it will be an entirely different answer involving pedigrees, improving the breed, etc. They will be able to explain to you what they are hoping to get out of the breeding and know the lines enough to give you an idea of the temperament, health and longevity they expect in the line. It's SO worth it to go with a hobby breeder. You'll have a friend for the life of the dog to be a sounding board for any issues that come up and a resource for anything relating to the breed.

One other thing I feel compelled to point out. They say the sire has hip and elbow clearances but where are the heart and eye clearances? Where are the clearances on the dam of the litter? I'm not sure why they feel their puppies are worth $700 when they are bred without clearances, but saving $800-$1300 will only seem like a deal until something goes wrong. What if your puppy has SAS and drops dead at 18 months? What if your puppy has severe hip or elbow dysplasia? Hip and/or elbow surgery is NOT cheap (think $5000 per hip for a total hip replacement), neither are medications and supplements. Certainly any health issue can happen in any pedigree, but you need to stack the deck in your favor. I would pass on these puppies.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
253 Posts
I understand your desire to get a pup asap and have everything fall into place so easily, but I agree completely with everything said above.

I, too, was drawn to such ads when I started looking at goldens a couple of months ago. I had no idea what to look for when choosing a purebred puppy. Now, however, after having participated in this forum and carefully reading all of the health information posted here, and in various books about the breed, I know better. Much better.

Saving $500 now is nothing in the larger scheme of things, and honestly (and I know I sound like a snob), I'd avoid any breeder, back yard or hobby, who advertised his or her puppies simply by saying, "These boys will be nice. I've got the mom--or one of the sisters." I don't think so . . .
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
3,818 Posts
The clearances need to be on the parents, not the puppies. You want to see that the parents have been checked out for hips, elbows, heart and eyes. Not that the vet seeing the puppies says he or she sees no problem in them. I paid $800 for Jaro from a breeder who lived in the middle of no where, but both parents had all their clearances. Oh, just a warning if you go look at the puppies you will fall in love. It is a bit dangerous unless you can really be strong.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
7,937 Posts
What everyone else has said.... OFA heart,elbow,and hip clearances and CERF eye clearances (eye clearances done annually) must be done on the parents. You get what you pay for. And just because a dog is light in color, doesn't make it "English." A dog imported from Russia is a Russian dog.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
14 Posts
Discussion Starter #10
Thank you all very much for your response. As I posted the message I had a good idea about what direction the responses might steer our decision, which is fine because I wanted an honest opinion. I guess I just needed it directly spelled out in front of me!

My husband and I completely agree that it is far worth the extra money that comes with a reputable breeder. We know that overtime this dog will become part of our family and the last thing we want is for him to suffer from pain or in the worst case pass away from something that may have been avoided if we selected from the right litter.


Today I sent a couple emails to breeders around Virginia and I’ve had a good response. The best thing is that I’m not experiencing sticker shock as I did before!

I’ve found puppies available at the following breeders which is very exciting!

Bama Goldens in Stephens City, Virginia found via Potomac Valley Golden Retriever Club puppy referral however I can’t see to find anything on the forum about them. I hope that’s ok!!
Gatsu's Cajun Country RN, CCA (Pedigree) and Bama's Twinkling Lil Starr (Pedigree)

Eldorado Goldens near Richmond, VA found on this site as well as PVGRC puppy referral
Eldorado's Adirondack Timberline "Timber" x Eldorado's Hott Off the Press "Flash" (Pedigree)

Stormy Point Goldens in Stafford, VA found on this site
Jeter Pedigree and Ree Ree Pedigree

hopefully we can find a great puppy from one of these litters....however, if not we are willing to continue the search. No rush!

thank you again for all your time and your feedback!!
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
253 Posts
Hopefully some of the senior members here will check out the pedigrees/clearances for you for the two lesser known litters listed above and give you a sense of whether or not these breeders are good choices. However, if you heard about them through the PVGR Club that is a very good sign. They only recommend breeders who have shown them copies of clearances on the parents, etc.

Of course, as we all know, Eldorado is always an excellent (but more expensive) choice. Chris is meticulous, easy to talk to, and has an amazing breeding/showing program. I highly recommend her.

Are the Bama and Stormy Point puppies approx. the same price?

Please let us know what happens!!
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
14 Posts
Discussion Starter #12
My husband talked to Chris at Eldorado yesterday and was very excited after their conversation…..which I wasn’t expecting since they are the most expensive, asking $2,000 for a puppy. We live in Richmond so Eldorado is right are right here which is nice. I’m sure there dogs are amazing but $2,000 is a lot of money!!

The other two are a little less expensive. Bama Goldens is asking $1300 for her puppies and Stormy Point’s puppies are $1,500.

I feel like we are leaning towards Bama Goldens….maybe a little bit for price but I’m hoping if they all have the proper clearances and with Bama being a referral that’s an ok choice. I’ve only talked to the owner via email but she provided me with a lot of information about her as a breeder and how she’s handles the puppies in the first eight weeks. She said they are getting their vaccinations this week and she is holding a puppy open house this weekend for the future owners. So of course it’s easy to get excited to think we could see our future puppy this weekend. However we won’t know which one is ours yet because she said at 8 weeks she does a temperament test to help determine the best puppy to match with each family. I understand several breeders do this which is great because I don’t know how I’d pick on my own!! I plan to speak with Carol from Bama over the phone today and hopefully that goes well.

If anyone has any feedback on the pedigrees/clearances from each breeder that would be great!! Thank you!!!
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
253 Posts
I did a very superficial check (not all 5 generations!!) on the parents of the Bama litter and they look really good to me. The owners have even done DNA testing which is great.

How many puppies do they have available still? Are there enough for you to get your preferred sex, or do you even have one? $1300 sounds right to me. Other individuals I talked to in VA--who are hobby breeders who only breed maybe once per year--were asking between $1200-1400 for their puppies, with all health clearances, etc. The top breeders like Eldorado and others mentioned on the forum ask a minimum of $1500 and most are closer to $1800-2000.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
14 Posts
Discussion Starter #14
Thank you for looking through the pedigrees. It doesn’t make much sense to me since I don’t really know what I’m looking for yet.

Bama has three boys left which is fine with us because we want a boy. Also she said she doesn’t give priority if you are the first or last person to put down the deposit. Everyone is treated equally because she matches the best puppy for each family!
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
2,498 Posts
I did a very superficial check (not all 5 generations!!) on the parents of the Bama litter and they look really good to me. The owners have even done DNA testing which is great.
Just let me add one thing about this.... DNA testing is not an indication of anything... it is an akc requirement for dogs that are used at stud some breeders advertise it some don't.... my boys here are DNA tested... it is an identification issue for the stud dog.... With DNA breeders have the ability to use more than one stud dog and then dna test the pups to determine who is the father of each puppy as long as the sires dna is on file. If there is any question about the sire used when breeding by artificial means the DNA profile allows you to confirm the sire.... etc etc.... it is not an indication of whether a breeder is great or not great or whatever... it is an akc requirement

just wanted to clarify that....
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
10,524 Posts
I noticed that neither of Jeter's parents are listed in OFA for any clearances-hips, elbows, eyes or hearts. Eyes and hearts might have been done but not sent in, but hips and elbows should be there. OFA will list clearances from other groups such as Penn Hip now. Jeter's sire has some kind of number listed as a hip clearance-860853-but I don't know where it is from or what it means. And nothing listed for anything else. His mother is not in OFA at all, and nothing listed in k9data. Definitely red flags there, and something to ask about if you are interested in one of his puppies.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
14 Posts
Discussion Starter #19
ohh man! I was just reading the comments on Jeter and started to panic!! but then i quickly double checked and Jeter is the Stormy Point Sire....which was on our list but right now we are leaning towards the Bama Golden puppies.

We are planning to see the puppies tomorrow and assuming everything goes well and we are happy with what we see we will bring one home the weekend following Thanksgiving.

I would greatly appreciate it if one of the senior members could do a check of Bama's Pedigrees....just for peace of mind.

Bama Goldens in Stephens City, Virginia found via Potomac Valley Golden Retriever Club puppy referral however I can’t see to find anything on the forum about them. I hope that’s ok!!
Gatsu's Cajun Country RN, CCA (Pedigree) and Bama's Twinkling Lil Starr (Pedigree)
Thank you!!!
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
7,937 Posts
The Bama litter goes back to Colabaugh Desert Storm(Stormy) (a very nice dog) via Genesis At The Wheel(another very nice dog) on both the sire and dam's sides. My Cookie was a Stormy daughter and she was terrific. Both parents have their clearances in order... The dam of the sire does not have an OFA elbow or heart clearance according to k9data. However, she was a 2000 model.... and many people still were not doing elbow clearances then. Stormy, however had all of his clearances and I think he was born in 1990.
 
1 - 20 of 24 Posts
Top