BD4U’s Visitation Policy
We are a home breeder and not a kennel. Our home is a wonderful place for our moms and puppies to receive great care, training and the puppies fantastic socialization. We are VERY busy with our family and even more so when puppies are here. The safety and routine for our puppies is very important for us to raise healthy well-balanced puppies for your family. Please be considerate of our schedule, our time, and the safety of our dogs.
We often have people asking about coming to visit our home to meet our breeding dogs and puppies. We understand this as I would want to visit a potential breeder if I were interested in adding a new furry family member. There are many factors when we have litters on the ground. We keep our home clean and aim to keep our puppies free from any contagious or deadly viruses. Our visitation policy allows for families with a paid deposit to visit that particular litter once the puppies are at least 6 weeks of age.
SAFETY OF THE PUPS:
Pups immune systems are very immature. Many unsuspecting visitors have brought disease (parvovirus, distemper, etc.) with them when visiting pups, the result of which is the death of the entire litter. Many germs are benign to healthy adult dogs but are dangerous to puppies and nursing mothers. I personally know several breeders that have lost puppies or entire litters to germs brought in by visitors.
Stressed out Moms create stressed out pups. A new mother is emotionally charged and in hyper protective mode. When a stranger comes to visit, Mom becomes stressed causing her body to create cortisol, which goes into the milk. The puppies consume this cortisol rich milk and become stressed themselves.
Panicked Moms hurt pups. When a stranger comes to visit, Mom’s state of mind changes rapidly. She feels threatened and moves quickly to assess the threat. Many Moms have unintentionally stepped on or crushed a pup in their urgency to get out of the whelping box to assess the threat.
I don’t ‘own’ the pups. All the pups are sold to families. I am simply the guardian. However, I have been entrusted with the care of these pups for the first critical weeks of their lives. As guardian of other peoples’ dogs, I must do everything I can to protect them. If one of the pups was yours, I’m certain you would expect me to do that for your pup.
SAFETY OF MY DOGS AND FAMILY
People that email me are strangers. I don’t know anything about you other than the fact you emailed me with basic information (which may or may not be true) about yourself and your family. I am inviting you, a stranger, into my home. This creates a threat to the safety of my dogs and my family.
We have a normal family life. We have family activities, responsibilities and commitments. Inviting strangers into our home interferes with our ability to live as a normal family.
Time spent with visitors is time not spent with my pups and dogs. Raising puppies and dogs is a very demanding 24/7 job. Every minute I spend with visitors is time not spent working with and caring for your pup so that you have the best pup possible or enjoying and caring for my own dogs, which is why I breed to begin with.
We are not a petting zoo. Some people think visiting pups is a fun way to spend a Saturday afternoon. I will not compromise the health and safety of my pups, my dogs and my family so someone can snuggle with pups. Only serious and committed buyers are worthy of that compromise.
It’s Visitation or Go-Home Day what should I expect when I arrive?
If you have a confirmed reservation on a born litter, you will be invited to meet your puppy, the litter, as well as the parents at our home for a pup family visit appointment. Pup Family Visit Days are scheduled once the litter is 4 weeks old, and the puppies have received their first set of vaccinations. As a health measure and safety precaution for our puppies, our home is not open to the general public for visits. Thank you for your understanding and respecting our puppies’ health and this policy!
All visitors will be required to step into a two-step shoe solution to sanitize the bottoms of your shoes. The first solution is bleach water and the second solution a hospital grade Lysol.
After the two-step shoe sanitation, we will require you to cover your shoes with provided shoe covers prior to entering our nursery.
You will then be asked to wash your hands up to your elbows with provided hospital grade unscented antibacterial hand soap, as well as a special soap to kill Parvovirus.
Please make sure to wear clothes that have not been in contact with other animals.
Do NOT visit our home if you or anyone in your visitation party has visited a pet store, grooming/pet boarding facilities, vet office, shelter, dog park, other breeders.
SO HOW CAN WE HELP YOU HAVE CONFIDENCE WE AREN’T A PUPPY MILL OR A FAKE WEBSITE ASKING FOR A $300 RESERVATION FEE?
‘Like’ our Facebook page. In the lower right corner of the home page on our website is a Facebook button linking to our Facebook page. On it there are lots of snapshots and some videos of our puppies that do not make it on to the website. There are more frequent updates there as well as other helpful tips or just fun stuff. Other families can also post on the page and you can communicate with us through the page as well.
Ask for References. We are very happy to provide references from adoptive families or our guardian families, or even our Vet (who knows us VERY well).
Attend one of our open houses. Schedule a visit in advance in between litters so you can see our place and meet the adult dogs. We can arrange to have guardian dogs here if need be.
Skype/Facetime us! We can take a call on our phone or laptop so we can walk around and show you the puppies and exactly where they are raised and where they play outside and inside.
We thank you for your understanding that we will not compromise on the health and safety of our pups and hope you see this as a positive quality of a reputable breeder!
Beautiful Doodles 4 U has changed our breeding policy on whether to breed back to back or every other heat. There have been several studies done on what is healthier for a breeding female and the results of these studies conclusively show that it is healthier for a female to be bred every heat instead of every other heat (I have attached a couple articles below). While we have chosen to breed back to back then skip heat, we are under the careful care of a Reproduction Veterinarian because our breeding mom’s health comes first ALWAYS! Beautiful Doodles 4 U never breeds first heat. Sometimes a female does not come in heat the first time until they are close to a year and a half old, others will come in heat when they are 6-8 months old for the first time. We do not believe that because you breed every heat that you should continue to breed the female for as long as those that don’t breed every heat. Which means that our breeding females retire earlier than those breeders that breed every other heat. Our girls are usually retired by 4 years old and spayed. This way they are breeding in their prime when it is healthier and safer for dam and puppies. While it is healthier to breed every heat we also think that breeders need to use common sense and make sure that their females are back to a healthy weight before breeding again, as well as, judging on a case by case knowing what is right for your female and her health.
Back to Back Breeding and Pseudopregnancy
The Australian Journal of Professional Dog Breeders
February 5, 2011 By Dr Kate Schoeffel
It is frequently claimed that breeding dogs on every heat or “back to back breeding” is bad for a bitch’s long term health and well being. However the research in canine reproduction shows that not breeding a dog when it comes into heat can in fact be bad for its health. Scientist have shown that pseudopregnancy [‘phantom pregnancy’] increases the risk of mammary cancers which are the second most common cancer in dogs after skin tumors and are 3-5 times more common than breast cancers in women
1: Pseudopregnancy often occurs when a bitch is not bred. She will show signs such as nesting, weight gain, mammary enlargement and lactation – usually about 6 to 12 weeks after oestrus. Pseudopregnancy represents the extreme of the changes which normally occur during the oestrus cycle and it is suggested that it is a hang over from dogs evolution from wolves. Subordinate nonbreeding pseudopregnant female wolves in a pack can help to raise pups by nursing the litters of other females”
2 In 1994 Donnay and his associates showed that there is a relationship between the number of pseudopregnancies a bitch goes through and the development of mammary cancer
3. Verstegen and Onclin (2006)1 have also studied canine mammary cancer and found that a large number of bitches presented for mammary tumours also show pseudopregnancy, that a large percentage of these females had frequent pseudopregnancies and that the bitches with recurring pseudopregnancy at each cycle tended to develop mammary tumors significantly earlier than other animals. Both of these authors say that there is need formore research but clearly bitches which don’t breed are likely to become pseudopregnant and pseudopregnancy increases the risk of cancer.
Skipping cycles in breeding has been linked to mammary cancer Pregnancy protects against life threatening uterine diseases. The most common uterine disease in the bitch is cystic endometrial hyperplasia. It is linked to several serious uterine diseases including the potentially life threatening disease “pyometra”(literally – a uterus full of pus) which affects nearly one quarter of dogs under 10 years old which are not desexed
4 . According to canine reproduction specialist Dr S. Romagnoli “bitches whelping regularly throughout their reproductive life almost never develop pyometra, while those who whelp rarely or never in their lives have a greater chance of developing this condition”. Furthermore a standard textbook of veterinary internal medicine notes that uterine diseases are less common in kennels where bitches are bred and conceive regularly indicating that pregnancy has a protective effect on the lining of the uterus or “endometrium”
Given that artificially restricting bitches, which haven’t been desexed, from breeding is bad for their health, it is not surprising that many breeding dogs bred have reproductive problems. If they are show dogs they often don’t start breeding until they are three years old, and have finished their show career, and then kennel club rules and even government regulations require that the bitch is only bred on every second season. Frequently older bitches need veterinary intervention to reproduce, and good bitches may end up being bred well beyond 6 years of age when their fertility is beginning to decline.
No responsible breeder who cares about their dogs would breed their bitches until they are exhausted, and rules certainly need to be in place to ensure that irresponsible breeders don’t exploit their dogs, however the current regulations in place in some states do not take into account the biology of the bitch. Breeding should be regulated by limiting the number of litters a bitch can breed or the age at which they should be desexed and retired. Breeding dogs regularly while they are young,followed by desexing and rehoming them early is in the best interest of the bitch and a good pet breeder can use this knowledge to work with the natural biology of their animals. Breeders must be aware of and comply with any government regulations regarding dog breeding in their state and unfortunately in Victoria, NSW and QLD current regulations do not permit this approach to dog breeding.
1.J.P. Verstegen III and K. Onclin. Prolactin and Anti-Prolactinic Agents in thePathophysiology and Treatment of Mammary Tumors in the Dog. NAVC Proceedings2006, North American Veterinary Conference (Eds).
2.Canine Pseudopregnancy: A Review (Last Updated: 23-Aug-2001). C.Gobello1, P. W. Concannon2 and J. Verstegen III3, Recent Advances in SmallAnimal Reproduction, Concannon P.W., England G., Verstegen III J. andLinde-Forsberg C. (Eds.)
3.Donnay I, Rauis J & Verstegen J – Influence des antécédents hormonaux surl’apparition clinique des tumeurs mammaires chez la chienne. Etudeépidémiologique. Ann. Med. Vet. 1994, 138, 109-117
4. Simón Martí Angulo Clinical aspects of uterine disease in the bitch and queen.Proceeding of the Southern European Veterinary Conference Oct. 2-4, 2009. S.Romagnoli, How I Treat… Pyometra. Proceeding of the SEVC. Southern European Veterinary ConferenceOct. 17-19, 2008 – Barcelona, Spain
5. Davidson AP, Feldman EC. Ovarian and estrous cycle abnormalities. In: EttingerSW, Feldman EC (eds) Textbook of Veterinary Internal Medicine. WB Saunders,2004
6. Johnson CA. Cystic endometrial hyperplasia, pyometra, and infertility. In: Ettinger SW, Feldman EC (eds).Textbook of Veterinary Internal Medicine WB Saunders, 1992, pp. 954.
Recently at an AKC Dog Breeding Discussion held at Michigan State University with key note speaker Dr. Claudia Orlandi Ph.D. (AKC’s breeder of the year and author of The ABC’s of Dog Breeding) shocked many breeders when it was disclosed that there have been scientific studies to show that it is detrimental for dams to skip heat cycles. It was shared that once you have begun to mate a dam that you should NOT skip any heat cycles until she is completely finished breeding. A dam is said to be “finished” breeding when her litter size is drastically decreased. The study involved following females that were bred every heat cycle and females that were bred every other heat cycle. After they were “finished” breeding, the dams were spayed and their uterus dissected.
Those showing most stress, and damage of the uterus were the females that were bred “every other” heat cycle. Part of the rational that skipping heat cycles is harmful stems from the fact that with consecutive heat cycles there is no “flushing action” of the uterus, which normally occurs by having a litter of puppies. The female will go through Estrus no matter if she is bred or not and by breeding a healthy dam back to back, can lessen the chances of the female experiencing pyometra, infections and false pregnancy. The choice to breed or not, should be contingent upon the goals the breeder has and for sure the mental and physical health of the female, above all else.