Need some info on finding a puppy [Archive] - Honda Element Owners Club Forum

: Need some info on finding a puppy

11-25-2005, 10:54 PM
Been thinking about getting a puppy for a while now and am ready to pull the trigger. I want to get a Lab; either black or chocolate. I live on Long Island and have a friend that just got a blonde Lab puppy. Waiting to hear back from here as to where she went and what her puppy cost. I want to try and get as much info as possible before deciding where to go.

What advice can everyone offer up? Anything I should be looking for in terms of breeders, warranties, problems with the breed, etc. What sort of prices am I looking at for a Lab puppy?

Appreciate any and all info. :)

11-25-2005, 10:59 PM
I have 3 dogs and the best advice I can give you is to wait until after the holidays. Holidays are a very stressful time of year and you dont want to add a puppy to that do you????

If you disagree, then maybe do a little online research. You may also want to look into your area for a lab rescue (unless you want a pedigree).

11-25-2005, 11:04 PM
I'm not on any sort of time table or anything. Like I said I am at the learning stage right now. Beginning of the year is fine with me.

Appreciate the links. Pure bred isn't an issue, just want to get a healthy pup that should offer as few health problems as possible. A puppy is a must, can't adopt an older dog because of issues my Nephew would have with a grown dog up front. He is ok with a puppy and being around it as it grows up, but has problems around dogs he doesn't know. He is ok with my sisters dog that he has known since she was a pup 8 years ago. Just something I need to take into consideration.

11-25-2005, 11:21 PM
I'm not on any sort of time table or anything. Like I said I am at the learning stage right now. Beginning of the year is fine with me.

Appreciate the links. Pure bred isn't an issue, just want to get a healthy pup that should offer as few health problems as possible.

Hey Spdrcr5,

If I had my druthers, I'd get a MUTT since Pure Bred sometimes have more probs plus the MUTT's live longer. I had a MAMSTAFF (MASTIFF + AMSTAFF) for 8yrs and in the end he came down with DM.

In Six months he went from 150+lbs in his heyday to weighing a little more than 40lbs in the end. He was barely more than skin and bone due to the affliction. I even had a custom-made wheelchair for the poorguy. He passed in his sleep.

Papers, AKC Certifications certainly help but be sure to research thoroughly about your breed or Mutt.

Thx, Phil

11-25-2005, 11:23 PM
or you could avoid most worries about genetic health problems and save a life at the same time. rescue a mixed-breed pup from the local pound.

all of the love, none of the hip dysplasia!

dogs should be beloved family members, and not designer accessories that match the sofa.

just something to consider. or as I like to say, visit the puppy room at your local animal shelter, look into all those big brown eyes, and tell them you'd rather they were euthanized so you can perpetuate the designer-breed fad and get an overbred dog from a puppy mill.

I know, that's harsh and is probably not your situation at all. I just hate to see people overlook all the love at the SPCA and start their search at a breeder. or if you want a VERY special pet, visit and read about their happy residents.

please think about it.

11-25-2005, 11:23 PM
I would say first consider the possibility of adopting a dog from a shelter. Lots and lots of animals in need of a good home, and are not necessarily problem dogs. It's difficult if you're looking for a specific breed, but if you have patience and persistence, and make a visit to the local shelter every few days or every week, you might get lucky and find what you're looking for, or close to it. Often a mixed breed has advantages over a purebred. Consider The Deliverance.

I know from having had a Golden retriever that the breed is inclined toward hip problems, but breeders are supposed to filter those traits out of the bloodline. They are among the friendliest and most loyal of breeds but like any dog, they can be mean and nasty if not properly trained and cared for. This is especially true because of their large size.

Here's some links I found: - check the breeders directory

11-25-2005, 11:50 PM
Thanks for the links and the info. I have heard about the problems that pure breds have with hip problems. I am not looking to get a pure bred for the sake of saying I have one. I have just always like Labs, my Uncle had 3 of them when I was growing up, had friends with them also. A few friends have gotten them over the last few years. Just find them to be a very nice friendly breed. As I said I need something that I want my nephew to be able to be around without issue and am confident that a Lab would be good for him to be around, I can't guarantee that as easily with a mutt from a shelter.

I am well aware of shelters... my sister got her 2 cats from the North Shore Animal League here on Long Island. My other sister rescued her dog and her cat from the streets of Brooklyn.

11-26-2005, 12:02 AM
Larry -

Labs are GREAT dogs but you must be able to get them out daily to get their "yaya's" under control.

The mixed breed/mutt adoption often works out but a responsible breeder can also do wonderful things . . .

You wouldn't go wrong with anything from Sonoran Desert Sport Dogs; Marc will work with you to match the type of dog you would like (family companion/pet quality v.s. hunt/field/show ?)


Our pup is from the Major/Zoey lineage and is doing great; exactly what we expected :)

11-26-2005, 08:07 AM
Save a dog...get a pound pup !:D

11-26-2005, 08:45 AM
I can weigh in on both sides of this as 1 of our Cardigan is from Cardigan National Rescue and one is from a breeder. If you are worried about your Nephew, I would go thru a responsible breeder either way. Responsible breeders usually work with rescue also and puppies do come into rescue. Our Cardi was a puppy rescue from a shelter situation and was removed from the shelter and place with a foster family in Cardigan rescue.

Pros for shelter or rescue: Saving a life! Giving an unwanted animal a home. I think rescue dogs sometimes KNOW how lucky they are when they have found a good home. If you go thru a "rescue program" the people "most" of the time know the animal to a degree. Hopefully it has been kid tested, getting along with other animals, getting along with humans, male and female. Cheaper up front, usually adoption fee covers spay/neuter and will usually be done before you get the dog. If a young puppy, probably not.

Cons: Many dogs that are in rescue are not socialized properly when puppies. You do not know the background, parents, etc. You don't know what that animal has been thru. Something down the line may upset that animal and you will have NO idea why. This can happen with puppies also. Our rescue didn't like getting into a car at all until just recently (3 years later) we think because he thought he was going to be transported away. Positive reinforcement and happy trips where the key. Mixed breed dogs can STILL have health problems, including hip dysplasia. HD IS genetic, but there is not a proven test for it.

Purebred dogs: Do your research. GOOD FOR YOU SPDRCR! Figure out if the breed fits your personality, space, time, etc. Start at to find the National website for the breed. The national site will/should give you lots of information that you may not have thought of-Health testing, problems that can occur in the breed, lifespan, care, etc. From the National website, they will probably have a breeder's list. Contact the breeder's and tell them you are considering that breed and looking for information. MOST responsible breeders will give you so much information, you will have overload. If there are breeders near you, ask if you can visit a few times before a puppy comes along. You will figure out who you might want a puppy from after meeting the breeder and their dogs. Responsible breeders USUALLY have a waiting list. You may have to wait a year for a puppy or more. If you are particular about a color or male vs. female, you may have a longer wait. Also, the breeder will "screen" you to figure out what kind of a puppy (hyper, cuddler, easy going, etc.) would fit with you. Don't be afraid of the screening process, remember you are screening the breeder also to see if you want to build a relationship for the life of the dogs or longer with the breeder. They want what is best for their dogs and you want a good puppy! Or the breeder may call you up in 6 months and say they have a puppy that they think will be PERFECT (!) in your home, are you interested? That breeder KNOWS their puppies temperments and if they will work in your home. They place the puppies in the best home for the puppy and the new owners, so that it will be a forever home and a perfect fit.

Ok, I have went on long enough......SPDRCR , I have a TON more I can tell you, shoot me an email if you want. This is getting way tooooo long!

11-26-2005, 09:44 AM
Pound pups are great! Just remember 1) the dog was picked up as a stray or 2) it was given up for a reason. Pound pups including those from the hurricanes, have gone through stress. What you see in the cage may not be what you are getting. Run a puppy test - you can find the puppy test on a google search.

Go though a breed rescue - the dog is evaluated for temperment problems and will be placed in an appropriate home. Most will ship the dog to your house.

Get a dog from a responsible breeder. The parents should have OFA number (hips) or Penn Hips rating and CERF number (eye exam). Meet the pup's parents. If you like the pup's parents, the pup should be good. Check around about the breeder's ruputation. Most breeders will take back pups if the home does not work out. Chance's breeder has re-homed several dogs because the owner was having family problems (money, divoice, etc.) Join the breed e-mail list.

Tell the breeder/rescue you want a companion or show dog. Dog shows are fun. With labs you can track, freestyle, rally, etc.

Once you get your pup, sign up for dog classes. You both will enjoy the classes. Observe a class before you enroll. Clicker training is wonderful.

Don't repeat don't buy a pup from a pet store. These pups come from puppy mills and tend to have major problems.

A mix breed is no guarenee for good health. Mix breeds have hip problems, eye problems, thyroid problems, etc. just as pure breed dogs.

Go to a dog show and talk to people - you can learn a lot about the breed and breeders. Check Infodog for near-by shows.

Enjoy your future companion.

hiker chick
11-26-2005, 10:06 AM
Ditto, Kiwi, and double-ditto bsdowner. And kudos to sprcr for being so thoughtful in the search.

No-kill shelters are fun to visit even if you're not looking for a dog. And you may just find a terrific dog there. Lots of purebred sporting dogs and mixes in the shelters.

Mixed breeds - usually uncontrolled and ill-considered -- are not inherently more healthy than purebreds. Depends on the particular breeding. Responsible breeders, and there are many, strive to breed out undesirable traits. And because breed organizations monitor their breeds' health, it is known that certain conditions, such as hip dysplasia or bloat are associated with certain breeds. Nobody is monitoring health traits of mixed breeds.

An advantage of purebreds is knowing the behaviorial traits associated with that breed. Samoyeds have wonderful commonalities, including exceptional friendliness (there are always exceptions, of course, usually attributable to owner error in raising the dog). Cross a sammie with a chow chow and who knows which personality traits will dominate...

Our family dog when I was growing up was a lab-springer spaniel mix. Lightning was a fantastic dog, lived to 15. My first dog as an adult was a Samoyed, Buck, who lived to 14.

My suggestions are:

1) January still is rushing it. Aim for getting a pup in the spring. If you find the pup of your dreams sooner, great. Maybe you will be lucky and find a great one in a shelter, rescue or a good (emphasis on the good) breeder has a pup available. The best breeders have their litters spoken for in advance of birth. It's priceless to be able to know the litter your pup came from since they were two weeks old. And the parents are good predictors of the pups' future, so meet them. Gidget yaps like her dad and pulls like her mom (a successful competitor in weight pulls) and is a sweetheart like the both of them.

2) join a local Labrador breed club. You'll meet breeders, members who show their labs, members who emphasize the sporting aspects of the breed. Networking is very useful for finding a great pup. I belong to three local clubs and the national. Each of their dues is $25 a year. I belong to support the good work that these clubs do as well as for the friendships and to network.

3) spend a lot of time Googling labrador clubs, starting with the national and then searching the links for locals. Local breed clubs of any size have a web page and they'll probably have local breeder directories. Labs are so much more popular than Samoyeds that you'll have more options, breeders and puppy mills to contend with. Quality control will be more of a challenge with so many labs out there.

4) Go to dog shows, all-breed and labrador "specialties." There tend to be more in the spring but you may catch some early in the year. Really fun to go to a dog show. There are several in this area, usually around Baltimore, that have 2500 or more dogs competing over a few days. So interesting to walk around seeing the different breeds and watching the grooming prep. And admission is typically free with a couple bucks charged to park, often at a fairgrounds. Another breed might catch your fancy, too.

*** a friend just called and her car battery is dead (20 degrees last night) so I've got to run. Will edit this later.

There's a terrific book I want to recommend to you as an aspiring dog owner. I've given several away over the past few years but the author name escapes me at the moment. Great stuff on purebred v. mix, dog training, potty training, equipment for the new pup that you should have before they come home. Finding a vet. Will figure that out, too.

Consider this a 15-year commitment and whatever you pay at the outset merely a down payment. Gidget's first year cost me $2000 just in vet bills (recurring bladder infections, specialist exams, tests and spaying). Vaccines alone will cost hundreds.

This is the book I very strongly recommend for anyone wanting to learn more about choosing the right dog, getting your home ready for the new pup, potty training instructions and basic dog training. Really an excellent primer, I've given away several copies.
Shelby Marlo's New Art of Dog Training

By: Marlo, Shelby (, Shelby) Mizrahi, Taura S. (, Taura S.)
ISBN: 0809223767
DOI: 10.1036/0809223767 (
Format: BZ 256 pages
Pub Date: 1999-01-01
Copyright: 1999
$14.95 USD

Some of the most pampered pooches in Hollywood have been trained by Shelby Marlo, dog trainer to the stars. Her techniques are known to be very humane yet effective. She encourages her clients to use positive reinforcement rather than painful punishment and includes in-depth explanations of her techniques for training. Shelby Marlo's New Art of Dog Training is more than a how-to manual--it can also be used as an instrument to develop a lifelong bond. With the methods presented in this book, owners will be able to teach their dogs commands such as "sit," "come," and "off" in less than an hour. The book also advises how to choose the right dog, make a dog feel safe and secure, and how to housebreak any animal.

11-26-2005, 01:00 PM
Pup's parents - Chance has his daddy's paper shredding hobby - not eating paper, just shredding it. Not often . . . and Acer's paw up when watching something.

from his mommy Spring - tennis ball crazy

from both parents INTELLIGENCE - Chance actually thinks - being a hearing dog, he alerts me to sounds. At a sound he considers, what sound, where and do I tell mommy . . .

By selecting a pure-bred dog - you know the basic charactersitics and health problems of the breed. Each dog is different, Chance is a bold, confident show-off. His sister does not have his confidence . . .

Find a good local breeder who is willing to work with you.

I got Chance in November, no problems with training or housebreaking. Yes it was chilly, and snow. Chance LOVES snow.

Labs are the most popular dogs - making it even more important to get a puppy from a responsible breeder.

Labs are popular service dogs too. I have seen some labs with nasty temperments. Be careful. Pups are no better than their parents.

11-26-2005, 01:01 PM
Y'all - some myths floating around out there. Things like hip dysplasia, Addison's disease & other health issues in dogs are hereditary. If a mutt from the rescue has bad genes from his parents or grandparents, you've got a dog with a health problem. There is no guarantee that he'll be "more healthy" simply b/c he isn't pure bred. It is true that some breeders select their stock based on structural traits in attempt to secure future show wins & don't make wise choices re: some health issues. Other breeders are in it for the money and overbreed, don't screen, and don't follow up wtih the families of the pups they place to see if any health issues manifest as the pup grows (many conditions won't develop until the dog is older). Some diseases can't be screened for when they are puppies either - so doing your research is very important. Fast and fatal conditions such as bloat seem to be more connected to size and structure of the dog & possibly to eating too much too quickly and/or activity after eating. It strikes dogs regardless of their origins.

Thing is, nothing is a sure thing when it comes to genetics - just like people.

Make your decision on breeder vs. pound based on your own wants, values, needs. Either way you need to do good screening!

In addition to researching breeds and possibly breeders, you should definately do some studying ahead of time about having a puppy. This helps prepare you for puppy-proofing your house, having a better understanding of time committments (esp. for the first 1 or 2 years!) and learn some tips to establish yourself as the leader in the house. We used "Dog Training for Dummies" and it was great (read before we got our first dog). Checking out obedience schools in your area is highly adviseable. Helps you and your dog bond, stimulates his mind (as well as yours - training is really for the owner, not the dog), and in the end you have a better behaved dog.

Dogs are great - especially when they are well cared for. Seems like you have a leg up on the whole thing since you are asking now!

Good luck!


(& her 2 Standard Poodles, both from breeders, neither with hip problems or other structural issues, but one which ended up with Addison's Disease which good homework could not avoid...but he's doing just fine)

11-26-2005, 01:46 PM
bsdowner and Hiker-chick, I knew I forgot something in my post! Dog shows are great to meet breeds/breeders.

To anyone going to a dog show just remember the breeders/handlers are there to show. You want to talk with them AFTER their ring time. They will have more time and be more relaxed and willing to talk with you. They consider a show a job and we all know how it can be at work! Plus, you can usually pet the dogs after without the fear of messing up the grooming job they had for the ring!

Good post E-vilqueen. I live in the puppymill state of Missouri. There are a ton of dogs in the newspaper every week for sale. Purebred, "new breeds" i.e. puggles, yorkiepoos, etc. Some ads are even "Kennel Overstock or Going out of Business" All for a buck. Stay FAR FAR away from these places.

I bought my first corgi from an ad in the paper (before I knew all of this). I almost lost her the first week, because she had parvo. I called the breeder and she could have cared less. Didn't even call me back to find out if Fannie made it or not. Thank doG she did and I love her to pieces. She will be 13 in April.

360 degree turn with our cardi corgi from a great breeder. We talk/email the breeder atleast once a week just to say hi or swap pictures. This breeder also helped us get our rescue Cardi, who actually came first. The breeder then sold us our other cardi. Ella's breeder has even stayed at our house for the dog show here!

There are also rescue people who are just as concerned about their placements as breeders. It just takes a little time to figure out what is the best fit.


11-26-2005, 01:56 PM
Thanks everyone. I know all about puppy mills and plan on staying far away from those.

This wouldn't be my first dog. I grew up with a dog that we got at around 6-8 weeks. Had her for around 14 years. I understand what it takes to train a dog and would certainly go to classes both with and without the dog when the time comes.

I have no interest in showing a dog or using it in any competitions... it doesn't interest me. I am looking for someone to hang out with, go on hikes, trips, etc.

I agree about any animal can be prone to various genetic problems as well as medical issues, it isn't a purebred vs mutt thing at all.

Been doing some reading and am learning quite a bit... still have a ton more to read even before contacting/seeing any breeders or rescue places.

Thanks and keep the info coming, it is being used. :) Anyone that wants to send me an email with more info please feel free to do that too.

11-26-2005, 03:26 PM

I dont know if you have one in your area, but another route to consider is guide/assistance dogs. An agency in our area adopts out the dogs that are not usable as guides. They also adopt out females that they use to breed future guide pups.

Labs are so cute too!

11-27-2005, 01:08 PM
You may just want a companion dog now - but a few years down the road, you may get bit by the show bug. I was planning on just having Chance as a hearing dog, but got myself involved in rally. Rally is really fun, good way to proof your training and increase bonding with dogs. Also, you meet really nice folks.

You can show mix breed dogs in ADPT rally.

11-27-2005, 03:37 PM
Many folks here have written very informative, useful posts. I agree with much of what has already been said.

To emphasize these points, I will tell you that if I were buying a lab, I would do research, research, research until I was SURE that I am buying a lab from a responsible breeder who cares the UTMOST about good health and can show you IN WRITING that the parents, grandparents, etc of the dog you are buying is free from hip displaysia. You might also ask about eyes and elbows while you are at it.

Getting a lab or a lab mix from anything other than a reputable breeder is playing russian roulette. Really, and the cost of caring for an HD dog is huge--HUGE. Not just financial either, its the emotional wear and tear on you, your family, and the dog. DON'T DO IT. Don't get a lab from the pound. NOBODY can guarantee you they are healthier--whether it is HD, Allergies, slipping patellas (that's dog for knees), you name it. Not even a good breeder can guarantee you anything, but at least they have made every last effort to TRY and breed the healthiest dog possible. At the pound you have NO IDEA what is behind that cute little pup. Now you pound lovers, don't slam me, I WORKED at a large city animal shelter for FIVE YEARS. As in employed. Worked there-back in the kennels where the dogs are, out in the community. I have owned several rescues. I have worked in rescue for nearly TWENTY. If you can match that experience tell me about it. I do care about dogs. I have also seen the good, the bad and the ugly in shelters. I have also seen the good the bad and the ugly in breeders. You MUST do your homework and find the best breeder possible. Like someone said, get online and start searching. Find the people WHO KNOW. They ARE out there.

I also breed on occasion. I have shown, trained, and competed in peformance with dogs for nearly 30 years, including retrievers, but of the golden variety. I have consistently owned one of the top dogs in my breed for the past 10 years. Believe me, there is nothing that compares to a truly quality breeder. Do your homework and find one. It may cost you more up front for your pup, but it may very well save you thousands in the long run. ESPECIALLY with a lab. To give you some idea, even with my extensive experience in dogs, the last time I switched breeds (10 years ago), I spent a year and a half selecting my breeder and pup. You REALLY have to talk to a lot of people and ask lots of questions. See their dogs, see their proof--should be some health certificates, some championship records, a lineage of quality breeding--evidenced by more health certificates and more championship and/or performance titles.

11-29-2005, 12:59 AM
One thing to keep in mind is that Labs are a "split" breed. A good breeder will have some very specific goals as to what s/he wants in the dogs s/he produces, and in Labs (as in many other breeds) they will usually be selecting for either work or show, not both. When seeking a puppy from a breeder, you need to know what you want in the dog and which sort of breeder is most likely to be producing it. Of course, a good breeder will also be screening you so that you don't end up with the wrong type of Lab for your household.

I have Border Collies, working dogs. They're not a breed for everyone, but a good example of a split breed. I don't consider the breed ring dogs to be the same breed as the dogs I have, and would never buy one. Nothing against them as dogs, I have met many and they are perfectly nice dogs, just not my cup of tea. One of my Border Collies is a rescue, and the other is a trained sheepdog from Wales. I also have a rescued Papillon, and I don't love the trained bitch any more than the two rescued dogs -- in fact, I have the closest bond by far with my rescued Border Collie. Don't discount rescue. In fact, if you want to ensure that you end up with a sweet, gentle dog your nephew will get along with, I think your best bet would be to adopt an adult of known personality and temperament from a good rescue that fosters its dogs in experienced homes and screens carefully before placement.

Good luck, Melanie

11-29-2005, 03:42 PM
I will weigh in on this subject.

If you are interested in getting a dog please contact the parent breed club of whatever breed you are interested in. Almost all of the major breed clubs have breeder referral. Please take advantage of this.

DO NOT PURCHASE A PUPPY FROM A PET STORE or a backyard breeder!!!

The idea that because of a larger gene pool mutts are healthier is a fallacy. You have NO idea where your dog came from and what issues are behind it. There is no evidence to support this.

Do not believe that line breeding is "bad". Educate yourself.

A good breeder can tell you about your dog’s parents and grandparents and even further back in the pedigree.

DO NOT PURCHASE A PUPPY FROM A PET STORE or a backyard breeder!!!

A good breeder knows the issues facing his/her breed and will test for it if possible and will not breed dogs in question.

A good breeder will stand behind their line and will take an animal back no questions asked if the owner cannot or will not keep the dog any longer.

A good breeder participates with the rescue organization for his/her breed.

DO NOT PURCHASE A PUPPY FROM A PET STORE or a backyard breeder!!!

A good breeder participates in health research concerning his/her breed.

A good breeder will ask you a million questions before they give you a puppy because they love their puppies and do not sell them to make money.

A good breeder is a member of their national and local breed clubs.

Purchase a dog from a knowledgeable breeder who loves the breed and puts the advancement of it at the top of their list.

If you have any questions please drop me a line and I will be more than happy to answer any of your questions.

Best of luck
Hutmo (Chris Hutter)

Epiphany Bull Terriers

PS: DO NOT PURCHASE A PUPPY FROM A PET STORE or a backyard breeder!!!

11-29-2005, 06:44 PM
Don't discount rescue.

Good luck, Melanie

In this particular breed, Labradors, you have to be careful, even in rescue. Because HD is sooo prevalent among poorly bred labs. Unfortunately, it is the poorly bred labs, by the less caring "breeders" (I hate to honor them with that title) that typically end up in rescue. Seldom, if ever, will you find the best bred dogs in rescue. At least that has not been my experience--and as I said, I have LOTS of experience.

It is such a shame to see a sweet breed as labs plagued by the prevalence of HD. But that's the reality, and you really have to work hard to support those breeders who diligently work to keep their litters as healthy as possible.

11-29-2005, 07:54 PM
. One Word - Bichon - !!!!!!!!!

11-29-2005, 08:47 PM
Good on ya, spdrcr5. We also did a lot of research before getting our lab almost three years ago.

After getting her, one thing that worked well for us was to take several days off work to help her transition to our house, potty train, etc. Between the two of us, the puppy wasn't alone for the first ten days (although crated for sleeping overnight). That might not work out in your situation, but I wanted to make the suggestion anyway. We were able to ease into the crate training while we were at work, too, since we work close enough to home to be back every few hours (slighty different schedules and home at lunch).

Sounds like you are well on your way to providing a good home for a dog.

(And in labs, I prefer the chocolate variety. Ours is named Fargo.)

11-29-2005, 08:50 PM
DO NOT PURCHASE A PUPPY FROM A PET STORE or a backyard breeder!!!
Well, I was going to have a peek at this thread and state my opinion, but apparently I don't need to now.

11-30-2005, 08:39 AM
I know a lab is one of the more popular breeds and certainly one of the friendliest but would you consider a different breed. My wife had one growing up and absolutely loved it but I will put my .02 in for another breed, the greyhound! Contrary to popular belief they do not need to run constantly and are very, very gentle! I guess it would depend on what you are looking for in a loved pet. A lapdog? Someone to play fetch with all the time? Someone to run with? For some of the most and best info go to and also the books Retired Racing Greyhounds for Dummies, Adopting the Racing Greyhound, The Best Finish; Adopting a Retired Greyhound. Of course if you go to and/or look around there are the occasional ooops litters and the puppies are usually free or a very reasonable price. One thing about greyhound groups and people are they are very close knit and are the first to report abuse and almost always do some sort of education/background check before adoption is even possible. My wife and I had to read two books on Greys before even adopting ours.

12-01-2005, 06:43 PM
Labs, Goldens and German Shepherd Dogs are VERY popular. A well-bred pup will cost big bucks. Along with the popularity, comes health problems and problems with temperments.

Be sure you enroll yourself and the pup in a dog training class! Socalize the pup - let him/her get to know people of all races, sizes, shapes and ablities.

Be sure the parents are certified by OFA for hips, elbows and thyroid; CERF for eyes. HD may be genetic, nutritional or both.

If you get a larger dog - feed good quality food. Not the stuff from the food store. Whole Dog Journal rates dog foods. The current trend is to feed large breed puppies dog food to keep the pups from growing too fast.

If you like labs, check out other retriever breeds like Chessies.

As mentioned before, breeders, rescue groups and dog shows are excellent sources of information

There is a perfect dog out there waiting for you to claim him/her.

12-01-2005, 08:01 PM
. . . There is a perfect dog out there waiting for you to claim him/her.

hiker chick
12-01-2005, 09:12 PM
Whole Dog Journal rates dog foods.

I'm glad bsdowner mentioned Whole Dog Journal.

An annual on-line subscription (HTML and PDF links are e-mailed monthly) will be the best $16 a dog owner can spend. And you can search their archives and order past articles.

WDJ takes no advertising. Their articles get down in the weeds on everything from nutrition to medical issues to behavioral training.

My vet recieves highlighted copies frequently from me and several of her other clients.

WDJ deserves the highest praise. I haven't seen anything else like it for dog people.

Here's the link:

hiker chick
12-01-2005, 09:19 PM

:razz: :razz: Very cute. I need to learn how to do that photo editing. Could have a lot of fun with thought balloons on Gidget pics!

Like right now: "Belly rub, fool, belly rub. Do I have to spell it out for you?"

12-03-2005, 02:24 PM
Get yourself some dog books and start reading! Dogwise has reading lists.

I consider the following books required reading for dog owners:

Don't Shoot the Dog

Culture Clash

The Other End of the Leash

Power of Positive Dog training


you can find these books from most book sellers. I mentioned Dogwise because it was handy.

Check out Karen Pryor's clicker training page

check Shirley Chong's page

12-03-2005, 08:00 PM

Check out the book "The Right Dog For You" by Daniel F. Tortora. I used it many years ago to choose my first dog and ended up with a Bullmastiff (Simon) that up to date has been my best dog. It gives info on the most popular dog breeds and narrows down the breeds bet suited to you and your lifestyle based on a pretty detailed questionnaire. Good luck finding your puppy and take your time because it is hopefully a 11-15 year commitment.

Take Care, Carlos.

hiker chick
12-03-2005, 09:39 PM
Testament to what a dog-friendly vehicle the E is, at the rate this thread is growing it will be the biggest of all: bigger than tires, bigger than Murdoch floor mats...

Dog peops are my kind of peops. :)

12-04-2005, 09:35 AM

Also great thread to educate pepple on importance of doing research before aquiring ANY animal!!!

I love the fact that there has been NO FLAMING thru out this thread. Sometimes when the flaming wars start that overrides all the good info that might be available. Not that it has happened here that I have seen, just other boards/lists I am on.

:) Waiting patiently to see Kiwi Metallic and for the first of the year, so I will save on property taxes next year!

12-05-2005, 10:13 PM
:razz: :razz: Very cute. I need to learn how to do that photo editing. Could have a lot of fun with thought balloons on Gidget pics!

Like right now: "Belly rub, fool, belly rub. Do I have to spell it out for you?" You mean like this . . . ? :D

Larry - when you finally get your Lab, you'll have lots of quality *down* time like this when he hits 6 months . . . :)

hiker chick
12-06-2005, 04:19 PM
I love the fact that there has been NO FLAMING thru out this thread.

Now that you mention it, I do not recall ever seeing any flaming in the pet section of this forum. :)

Maybe that's because we're all mellower from living with our therapy pets 24/7.

soopa element
12-06-2005, 06:22 PM
The only advice that I would have to offer is not to go to a pet store as many stores get their pups from puppy mills. My recommendation is to find a breeder near your area and find your puppy that way. As breeders, they will ask you many questions, but don't be afraid. They just want to make sure that their pup goes to the right family. And don't be afraid to ask questions to breeders as well. The more questions they are asked, the more of a compliment it is for them. You can find a list of breeders in your area by checking out
Hope this helped.

12-06-2005, 10:03 PM
Hi Larry,

Thinking about getting a dog huh?

Well I love my two idiots (Skip and Scout). I hated coming home to an empty house so I went to get a dog and came home with two.

First things first DON'T GET TWO DOGS unless you have a GF or wife to help out. When you go out of town it's easy to find a friend who will take a dog it's hard to find someone to take care of two dogs.

With that said a Lab is a great dog. Fun, friendly for the most part great with kids. Golden’s are the same but a little more gentle and patient with kids.

I grew up with Lab mixes and I now have a Jack Russell Mini Dachshund mix and a Beagle. My advise don't get a Beagle as a first dog. They are a ton of work and very, very stubborn. I have had dogs allmy life and this Beagle has tested every last nerve in my body and she is a great Beagle.

I would suggest you look on I think it's a national board and has photos of the dogs looking for adoption.

Don't get the first dog you see. When you and the dog you are supposed to get find each other you will both just know. I looked at dozens of dogs before I found Skip and Scout. Skip is by far my best friend in this world.

Getting a dog is a big step and a HUGE responsibility and it will totally change your lifestyle. Be sure you are ready for it.

Good luck and let us all know what you decide.

Joe Mama

12-06-2005, 10:16 PM
Larry I take that back about the Beagle.

Check out this Lab Hound mix.

Labrador Retriever,Hound Mix

Size: Medium
Age: Baby
Sex: Female

Notes: Sasha is a 6 week lab/hound mix. Her brothers and sisters look like labs, either all black or yellow, but she is the only one with both colors. She could not be placed through a lab rescue, so here she is looking for her forever home. She is a sweet girl that will be about 50 pounds as an adult. She is in TN and will be ready to come home in a couple weeks. Please email for an application if you are interested in adopting Sasha.

This pet is: up to date with routine shots, altered

Beagles Etc.
Poquonock, CT

How can you say NO to this face?

12-06-2005, 11:52 PM
Great info everyone, thanks. :)

I already know about pet stores and bad "breeders". I have my sister telling me to go for a rescue... she rescued her "Brooklyn Terrier" as well as her cat.

I am not even considering another breed, or even a mutt of any kind. Will my mind change when I begin to actually look at different dogs? Possibly, but right now I don't see it happening.

For the rest of the year and into the beginning of next year will be all about research, research and more research. I have read through so many websites literally cover to cover. lol I have notes on every possible problem a Lab can have it is scary at the knowledge I have already picked up. lol

Don't anyone worry about this thread having any flames in it, I will delete them as soon as I see them. It is truly turning into a very good source of information for everyone to read. Thanks to all of you for that. :)

12-07-2005, 12:43 AM
I was able to get a pure Lab from the Denver Dumb Friends League.

12-09-2005, 03:10 PM
I am a pet sitter by profession and one of my clients just got a lab a few weeks ago from "Labs 4 Rescue". I thinkthe adoption fee was a few hundred $, but I'm sure that includes vaccinations and what not.

Good luck!