Monday, September 01, 2008

Christmas Puppies

I hate Christmas puppies. And Eater bunnies. And any type of cute young animal advertised for sale around a major holiday. Why do I dislike them? After all, I am a rabbit breeder and occasionally a dog breeder. Does this make me a hypocrite? How do I justify breeding and selling young animals all other times during the year?

Bringing home a new animal is not a decision to be made lightly. I believe in forever homes (or the ability to eat whichever animal you're tired of). It seems that many people buying animals over the holidays get caught up in the holiday hustle and bustle and are simply trying to check gifts off their lists. Puppies are not like a shiny new toy that can be put away when you're bored with them. They can't be left in the garage until the weather warms up next spring and then taken out and played with only in good weather.

Pets are a huge responsibility (especially when they have jaws that can destroy a table leg). I love our Labs. They're part of our family (and even live with us in the house). We take them everywhere with us when the weather's cool enough to leave them in the car for a few minutes if we go someplace dogs aren't welcome. Some days I would like to trade my children for the dogs because the dogs are easier to live with and train. If only we could pen the kids in the kennel out back...

Now for my dilemma. I bred Zowie to the Yellow Lab next door. It was the middle of August when she came into heat. Really, it seemed like a good idea at the time. Both Roscoe and Zowie are very mellow, very quiet, well behaved, mad for retrieving Labs. They both have good conformation, good color, and good bloodlines. However, I am an idiot. I did not count ahead to figure out when her puppies would be ready to find their own homes. You guessed it... mid December.

So, in an attempt to avoid the dreaded "Christmas Puppies" I am already searching for homes in need of Labrador Retriever puppies this winter. Good news! If you reserve now I will hold your puppy for you until after the holidays! Or if you wish you may take them any time after they are 8 weeks old, but if they're going to be a present for someone.... please, please reserve a puppy before November rolls around. And please, please don't let me ever hear you refer to your dog as a "Christmas Puppy." Although it could be an "End of Hunting Season" companion for your older, retiring retriever.


Baby Olivia said...

My sister works in cat and dog rescue and I have to say that it is so refreshing to hear from a responsible and caring breeder. Keep up the good work!

Janet said...

Thanks! We try to only produce what we have a market for and I actually would rather eat the rabbits unless a new pet owner comes with personal references and a cage plan. It makes for interesting 4-H meetings when we discuss marketing the offspring from the kid's breeding projects. I also ask that anyone who takes one of our puppies home keeps my contact info. and returns the dog to me if they can't keep it (I'd much rather take a dog and retrain it than have one take their chances at the animal shelter).

Janet said...

Good grief my grammar is terrible lately. Please excuse all the instances where my subjects switch from singular to plural (or vice versa) within the same sentence. Obviously I'm not proof reading well with the kids in the background!

Jake camping in the living room

Jake camping in the living room