I believe the best socialised puppies, who make the best family dogs come from dedicated breeders like myself whose puppies are born in the home and are much loved members of the family. My puppies are born, brought up in the home, loved and socialised from the minute they are born.
My reasons for seeking Guardian Homes in the future is due to the logistical problem in the above scenario – most home breeders can only accommodate a limited number of adult dogs. So, for a small home breeder like myself once I have reached this limit there are only three options to consider as keeping dogs outside in kennels is just not an option I would ever consider and Australian Labradoodles as a breed do not cope well in kennel environments.
So I either:
1. Stop breeding
2. Rehome a much loved pet who has produced pups that have given joy to many families
3. Find a guardian home for a puppy with a suitable family who will love and cherish the pup for the whole of its life, build a relationship of trust and can embrace the values of myself the breeder.
Option 1 would result in the loss of my valuable experience as a well-researched and educated breeder and the loss of my valuable line of healthy, good tempered Australian Labradoodles.
Option 2 is not an option as there is no way that my loved dog could be sent away because he/she was no longer “useful.”
Option 3 allows myself as the breeder to continue to provide healthy, loving pets and at the same time provide the dog with a stable, long term, happy home life.
The guardian homes are always close to myself, the breeder, to allow the puppy to continue the bond she formed with me during her first crucial early weeks meaning that there is no stress when she returns to me to give birth.
Becoming a guardian home is not something to be undertaken without due consideration, and not a decision I have personally taken lightly. I have an exceptionally high standard of care for my breeding dogs, and expect no less of a Northbound breeding dog placed in a guardian home.
The right guardian home must be committed to the following;
attending training to a minimum Kennel Club bronze award
feed exactly the same food I feed whilst in my breeding programme
maintain a healthy body condition for breeding
appropriate exercise to the age of the dog
grooming and ear care
the guardian girl must also spend a catch-up weekend with me every 5-7mths.
to not allow the dog to go up and down stairs prior to hip/elbow xrays.
If a guardian home has children, they should be of an appropriate age that can follow parental instruction and appreciate the importance of animal care and gentle handling. Homes with very young children will not be considered.
Additionally the right family home must show common sense and regular communication with me.
The guardian home is entrusted with a critical part of my future breeding programme and business,
this privilege must be respected and we must have a relationship of honesty.
The puppy placed will remain the legal ownership of myself whilst he/she is a Northbound breeding dog, and ownership only transferred to the guardian home once the dog is neutered at my expense.
The puppy will return to me for health testing, mating and again for birthing (c.7weeks in my care). The female dog will spend approximately two thirds of her time in the Guardian home (prior to spay), and will be required for occasional stay in the Northbound breeder home in the first two years in order that she feels happy and comfortable here before returning to whelp.
I will happily take in the girl whilst in season if a Guardian Home prefers this.
All health testing and vet related breeding costs are the responsibility of myself the breeder, all routine costs and insurance are the responsibility of the guardian home.
I expect the guardian dog to not go upstairs or sleep upstairs prior to hip scoring.
I provide all guardians with a Tractive GPS device to attach to the dogs collar to give that extra security and peace of mind.
A question often asked by guardian homes is; will the dog miss me too much?
Actually, the dog really doesn’t!
We perversely want our dogs to miss us so we feel an odd gratification that the dog needs us. The pups that go into guardian homes have lived with me for a while or been bred by me. This means I am very much their home and family too.
This is a positive thing for the dog as they have two homes that love her/him dearly and can fit in beautifully with both. I have never had a guardian home dog come back to me and pine for their guardian home family….it just doesn’t happen.
They have a wonderful time here with me and my other dogs.
Another question raised is; can I come and visit when my guardian home girl has had her pups?
Absolutely, I would expect you to come over and visit, it’s not a problem at all.
The gorgeous girl, once she has fully raised her puppies will be returned back to you in the best condition.
Finally, what if I don’t want the girl to return to you and have a litter?
That will never happen, because that is why my chosen girl (or stud) is in my Northbound breeding programme and in a guardian home not a pet home.
So being a guardian home is probably not the path to suit you.
Or you accept my girl will come back to me for her health tests, mating and raising of pups, or he/she is returned to me permanently. It really is that simple.
It is worth noting that should the guardian home dog not be kept in a healthy condition as assessed by a vet or the guardian renege on the agreed legally binding contract, or the dogs upbringing is in conflict to my high standards, then the dog will be removed from the guardian home with immediate effect and a potential financial penalty based on business loss should the male/female dog be unable to fulfil their contract terms. This has occurred on two previous occasions, and I have no qualms about removing my breeding dog from your home.
However, removal of a guardian dog is highly unlikely to happen as both parties are fully aware of the conditions of the guardian home contract, we do build up a friendship, a trust in each other and a love for this delightful breed.
I fully support and mentor my guardian homes on all areas of puppy and dog development, training, exercise and feeding.
Preference will be given to current Northbound puppy owners, family or friends in the North West area, although other North based homes will be considered if suitable.