You can pick your friends, and you can pick your nose…
…but your puppies? Um, notsomuch.
Since we are now at T-minus OMG-just-have-the-puppies-already!!, I want to share some reminders and caveats with you, my wonderful puppy buyers. I already adore you, I am super-excited to be placing a puppy with you, and I can’t wait to see your new little bundle grow and change and become his or her own little fur-person under your care. Here’s the thing, though: that new little bundle will most likely be picked out by me, not you.
That is not because I don’t like you (I do), or because I don’t trust you (I do, or I wouldn’t be placing a puppy with you), or because I am a massive control freak (I am). It’s because puppies are not simply interchangeable with one another. Even in a remarkably consistent litter, temperaments will vary from puppy to puppy, and not every puppy will thrive in every situation.
So, try to keep that in mind when those photos start hitting the blog and Facebook. Inevitably, there will be one puppy who has the flashiest markings, the cutest freckles, the most adorable fairy kiss on top of her head… etc. But try not to fall in love with any one in particular. It’s hard. I know. BELIEVE ME, I know. When I was watching Magnum’s litter grow from weird little gerbilly-looking things into real puppies, I obsessed over every photo, and at one point declared that I would just DIE if he was not the one I ended up with. I get it.
But as much as you may like those markings, those freckles, that fairy kiss, if they are attached to a puppy who does not have the right temperament for you and your household, you will not ultimately be happy with it. If you already have multiple dogs, or smaller children, or if this whole dog thing is new to you, then I’m not going to send Little Prince or Princess McBossypants home with you. By the same token, if you are looking for a super agility prospect, you don’t want the couch potato who spends most of his time eating and snoozing in the back of the puppy pen. So while I would like to honor your wishes, and will, to whatever extent possible, please know that my first concern is to give you the puppy who is going to be your best life-long companion.
The other reason I won’t be able to tell you right away which puppy is yours is that until they reach 7-8 weeks, I will not be able to fully assess them for show (conformation) potential, and when it comes to “first pick” of the litter, um, that would be me. 🙂 Another variable is the stud owner’s choice of whether to take a puppy back or to take a stud fee; if she decides not to take a puppy from the litter, then that is one more puppy who is available to one of you good people on my puppy list.
Once I see how many puppies there are, I will be contacting you to let you know if you are a lock for a puppy, or whether you are my alternate, pending the stud owner’s decision. For those of you who are locks, I’ll be asking you to send a deposit to me. If I let you know that you are an alternate, and you want to see how that plays out, I will not ask for a deposit until or unless I can tell you that you will have a puppy. If you do not want to wait, or if you are one of the unfortunate folks for whom I don’t have a puppy this time around, I will help put you in touch with another breeder who has or will soon be having puppies, or I will move you to the front of my list for next time around, whichever you prefer. I do intend to have two litters next spring/summer — a second from Whiskey, and one from Saphira.
Meanwhile, everyone cross your fingers (and every other available body part) for an easy delivery and healthy babies!!