January 15, 2010, Newsletter Issue #81: Is Buying a Puppy Online a Good Idea?

Tip of the Week

Everything you've read about selecting a puppy talks about looking at the puppies, the parents and the breeder's facility before you make your selection. So let's say you're looking for Labrador Retriever puppies for sale for example, you're a bit hesitant about the thought of shopping for a puppy online. Is buying a puppy online a good idea? Actually, buying a puppy online through a site like puppyfind.com can be an excellent idea, especially if you are looking for a breed that isn't available in your area.

While seeing both parents and viewing the breeder's set up is good advice, most local breeders aren't going to be able to give you those options, either. Often, the breeder only has the mother on the premises and has used a stud dog as the father. This dog could be at a kennel halfway across the country or even in another country all together. If the mother dog competes in agility competitions or is working on her championship, she may not be around either, especially if you are looking at an older puppy.

Because of concerns about disease, most breeders do not allow visitors to enter their kennel area. Instead, they bring the puppies that are to be sold to a separate space for prospective buyers to see. Even if they have safeguards in place to protect against diseases, the breeders may be concerned that visitors will stress a high strung new mother in the kennel.

Finally, if you are worried that buying online means you won't be able to turn a puppy on its back to see if it is submissive, it is time to be honest with yourself. Are you really going to decide not to buy a puppy because it wouldn't lie still in an uncomfortable position after it gave you that big, sloppy puppy kiss?

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Carma Spence-Pothitt