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Ok our 2 year old red lab is in heat and we are thinking about having her bred. The only thing is how do you go about doing that?? Does anyone have any names from around the Fargo area with studs etc. Never have done this before so any help is much appreciated....
 

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unless you've already done so you might be getting a little ahead of your self, prior to breeding hips, eyes and other certifications should be done especially with labs.

Otherwise its a health crapshoot.

Browndog could probably give you a lot more detail I'm kind of old school and not up to speed with all the current lab stuff and this list is long.

I don't breed dogs, I don't have the expertise it takes to do it correctly.
 

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I really hope you'll reconsider. Breeding dogs indiscriminately is irresponsible and cruel. It would be much better to leave the breeding to those who want to take the time and effort to become knowledgeable about the breed, (there's no such thing as a red lab btw) and the strengths/weaknesses of a line before they make the decision to create pups.

The world doesn't need more puppies that will likely end up being euthanized when they stop being cute.
 

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You wouldn't ask your accountant to rebuild your transmission would you?

Leave the breeding of dogs to the pros.

Its a yellow lab..no such thing as a "red lab"
 

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Eric Hustad said:
Ok our 2 year old red lab is in heat and we are thinking about having her bred. The only thing is how do you go about doing that?? Does anyone have any names from around the Fargo area with studs etc. Never have done this before so any help is much appreciated....
Hey Eric

All good posts so far...

Anyone that is considering breeding their dog, and who hasn't bred dogs before, should go find a local breeder in the area first. There is so much that goes into the process, and it is no small feat to bring a successful happy litter of pups into the world.

The first question I had when I read your post an hour ago, was "Is it trained, what are it's credentials/titles?"

Now the reason I ask, is that is the question anyone who is serious about finding a quality lab hunting partner is going to ask. I know it was the first question I considered when starting to look for a lab. I spent around 2 months looking at different kennels before getting my pup in August/September of this year. As a prospective new puppy buyer, I wanted to make sure that whatever pup I chose from a litter came from a place that is insistent on top notch service and quality for their pups.

I also wanted to make sure that as a "layman" buying a pup, that whomever I worked with on the breeder side, had all the knowledge and experience to take care of all the 101 little details that a new owner maybe might forget to do... (Shots, deworm, OFA, Hips, vitamins, AKC registration, micro chip, dewclaws, puppy food brand etc etc...)

The place I chose walked my wife and I thru the process from A to Z, and had everything sitting out in order, with a complete personalized file for my little guy. They left nothing to chance, and took every pain to make sure I had every question answered, and that they covered every "next step" I would need to do upon leaving.

After doing business with them, I left knowing how much I didn't know.

I guess that is what I'm trying to convey. There is a TON of stuff to consider regarding choosing who to get a pup from.

If you are looking to get into it, I'd suggest you first call around and see if you can team up with someone in the business who is looking for new bloodlines for their litters. If however, noone is interested in breeding your dog, it might not have sufficient credentials/bloodline to garner interest. That might be an indicator to how much interest might later exist when the pups arrive.

I do know from my recent experience with a top notch breeder, that going forward, I will never buy another pup from anyone of less experience. After seeing the quality and professionalism from a top kennel, sportsman should not settle for any less...

My :2cents:

take care,

Ryan
 

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Here's the article I was looking for earlier that really talks about it from the buyer's point of view:

http://www.gundogmag.com/training/pickpup_082106/

Picking A Gun Dog Puppy

Here are some guidelines for finding the best young gun dog
By Jerry Thoms

Do Your Homework
"The most rewarding way to pick a gun dog puppy begins way before the pup is born," says Dr. Jim Rieser, a veterinarian and owner of the Shooting Starr kennel in Franksville, Wisconsin.

"Locating a promising puppy means first finding the best breed for your hunting purposes, then researching the backgrounds of breeders who produce the kind of gun dog for which you are looking," Rieser advises.

"Though this process may sound simple enough, you might spend many days or weeks or months reading magazine articles and books on the subject and lots of time studying breed-specific Web sites. Do all this before making phone calls to breeders. A prospective puppy buyer who has done his homework and knows about the breed he is interested in will get a more positive reaction from a breeder with pups for sale," Rieser emphasizes.



Most breeds of gun dogs are represented by national clubs or organizations that have Web sites featuring a detailed description of the breed and its general history and background. Many sites also have a list of club members with addresses and phone numbers so that anyone interested in this breed of gun dog can call club members for information or maybe even see their dogs in person. Some sites will also have a list of breeders with announcements of existing or expected litters. Going to these information sources is obviously a good idea," Rieser says.

Picking A Pup With Credentials
"I always advise anyone searching for a pup to look at litters from parents with quantifiable hunt test or field trial scores," says Clyde Vetter, a full-time professional hunting dog trainer from Wisconsin. "As a gun dog trainer, I am often asked by clients for help in selecting a puppy. My advice is to look for litters from parents that have been judged in the field according to some formal system or standard, which will give the puppy buyer some measurable and concrete information.

"Though field trial scores may not always directly relate to an adult dog's potential as a game bird hunter, results of AKC Hunt Tests or scores from North American Versatile Hunting Dog Association (NAVHDA) testing procedures are more conclusive and meaningful for most gun dog breeds," Vetter states. "The same goes for statistics from the Hunting Retriever Club or the National Shoot To Retrieve Association."

Look At The Pup's Parents
"One of the best ways to judge a puppy's future as a gun dog is to see its parents," says Curt Shreve, a Large Munsterlander breeder from Prior Lake, Minnesota. "When I add a new pup to our line or help someone choose a puppy, I always like to actually see the young dog's parents…for all the obvious reasons."

If you can't see the pup's parents in person, Shreve suggests asking the breeder to send a video of them in a real or simulated hunting situation. "With my breed, I like to see the adult dogs point a live bird such as a pigeon, track a running wild or pen-raised pheasant and fetch any species of game bird on land and out of water," Shreve says.

"With all the inexpensive cameras on the market, most gun dog breeders can own one or at least borrow one to make a short video of their adult dogs in action. One good video sometimes is worth 10,000 words in deciding if the puppies in a litter have come from good hunting parents."

Ask The Breeder For Help
"Most breeders of well-bred gun dogs will ask prospective puppy buyers lots of personal questions," says Jim Julson, a Small Munsterlander breeder from Colman, South Dakota. "In most cases, the breeder wants to get sort of a profile of that person's experiences with gun dogs in general, hunting with them, training them and maintaining them on a personal level.

"The idea is to match individual pups from the litter with the hunting lifestyle of the buyers so that the new puppy owner will have a gun dog best suited to his expectations and needs," Julson feels. "If a breeder spends most of the time making a sales pitch about his puppies and gives little attention to the buyer's personal background as a hunter and gun dog owner, the buyer should be wary," Julson warns.

Judging Temperament
"Don't believe any puppy seller who says you can't make some general judgments about a puppy's temperament at seven weeks of age. Anyone who says that probably hasn't spent enough time watching the pups at play or personally handling each individual pup," says to John Luttrell, a Labrador breeder from Clark, South Dakota.

"Sure, you can look at a litter of 10 black Labs as they charge around the yard and chase each other then decide there is no obvious difference in the temperament of any of them. But spend several hours watching them eat, play and have mock fights with one another and the pecking order will appear, along with some insights about the personality of each individual pup," Luttrell adds.

Reasons For Producing A Litter
"Always ask any breeder why the two parents of the pups for sale were bred," says Larry Hansen, owner of a British Labrador kennel in Tracy, Minnesota. "What are the breeder's stated objectives and how will this pairing of dogs produce some specific pre-conceived results? Is this a repeat breeding and if so, why? And if there have been other litters out of this line of dogs, are there references from satisfied puppy buyers?" Hansen suggests these are all worthwhile questions.

If references are given, "Do get in touch in person or at least on the phone to see how the owners of these dogs feel about their purchases," Hansen adds. "Ask the same pointed questions asked of the breeder. And be sure to ask how much and what kind of hunting the referred persons do so you can get a solid sense of perspective on the pups you're considering."

The Breed's Health History
"Before picking any kind of puppy, make sure the lines of dogs from which it comes have certified sound genetics with major emphasis on normal hips and healthy eyes," advises Tom Dokken, a Labrador breeder from Northfield, Minnesota. "Joint and eye problems plague many breeds of gun dogs, so every puppy buyer needs to study each breed's genetic background for a history of chronic hip dysplasia or eye disorders as well as any other genetic-related problems.

"When buying any gun dog, get a guarantee in writing from the breeder that your puppy will be free from any major debilitating genetic disorders and that the pup you have bought is healthy," Dokken adds. "Take your pup to your vet as soon as possible for a complete examination for genetic soundness and good general health."

Pick A Well Socialized Pup
A socialized puppy is one that has been regularly handled by people, helping the young dog to become accustomed to the human touch and comfortable with human beings. "If a gun dog litter has had little or no contact on these levels, then the pups may be fearful and anxious around prospective buyers," notes Tom Roettger, an English cocker breeder from North Branch, Minnesota.


"Spooky puppies afraid of people are difficult to evaluate and hard to sell. So most responsible gun dog breeders make a specific point of spending time with any litter," Roettger finds. "The idea is to develop pups that are friendly, happy and at ease around anyone who wants to hold them, play with them or just watch them.

"With my puppies, my family and friends handle them a little every day from the birth of the litter, then play with them a lot starting when the pups are five weeks old. By seven weeks, our pups love to be handled by everyone, which means they can better be tested for temperament and other factors," Roettger says.

Conformation In A Puppy
"By the time most gun dog pups are seven weeks old, you can make some accurate predictions about their future physical conformity," says Chuck Wilson, a Llewellin setter breeder from Waco, Texas. "Main physical features such as head shape, body type and tail set are usually evident when most breeds of puppies are seven weeks of age and become more apparent each week after that," Wilson feels.



"Most experienced breeders of any kind of gun dog should be able to look at eight to 10 pups in a litter and tell with 75 percent success which ones will grow into small, medium or big dogs," Wilson believes. "And, even if the rough estimates aren't absolutely on target, the educated guesses should be close enough to be useful in picking a puppy."

Bird Finding And Fetching Ability
"Testing seven-week puppies for hunting potential may seem like a real stretch. But in our experience, there are some fairly consistent behaviors that can be identified to predict a young dog's hunting future," says Jean Rodriguez of R Place Kennel in Hartford, South Dakota.

Rodriguez and her husband Joe have tested dozens of litters of all breeds of gun dogs. In the process, they have developed a system that is relatively simple and effective and can be administered by anyone.

"We evaluate a litter of gun dog puppies in several categories of responses to physical stimulation as in other kinds of tests for canine temperament and learning aptitude," Rodriguez says. "What is different about our system is that there is more emphasis and focus on prospective hunting qualities. For example, each pup is exposed to a bird wing flipped on a string and a tethered live pigeon to see if there is a perceptible prey drive, self-confidence in a new experience and a willingness to pursue a moving object," says Rodriguez.

"No, we don't say this testing system is totally complete, but we have a pretty good history of predicting the hunting behavior of pups when they become adult dogs," Rodriguez claims. "Our evaluation program is not the only one available but it is the only one we know of with an emphasis on determining hunting potential in a wide range of gun dog breeds."

Conclusion
Picking a puppy is hard to do--if you do it right. Research into breeds and lines, quizzing breeders about their litters, evaluating a pup's parents and choosing one pup according to some practical standards--all of this takes time and effort and a great amount of personal involvement. But as gun dog owners everywhere know, picking a good puppy is worth the effort.
Hope this helps...

Ryan
 

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Great article Ryan...Thanks for posting!!! :beer:
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
Thanks for the help guys. It was an idea we had because of her going into heat but sounds like there is a lot more to it. We got here from a guy who breeds them up in Hillsboro and she is a beautiful dog who is just a big teddy bear with our 3 year old twins. They call her color Fox Red and that is why we call her a red lab. We also have a black lab that came from a huge kennel in the cities and she is machine, but we also had a black lab growing up that we got from just a farm who didn't really raise labs and she was a great hunter etc. Again thanks for the info and we really need to do some thinking about this from what you guys have said.
 

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Also keep in mind that unless your female is a direct offspring of at least a Field Champ on one side, you're not going to be increasing the quality of the labrador breed. Even though the color, which is still Yellow, is desirable, that should be the least of your worries when breeding dogs.

This day and age, there is almost zero profit in selling pups, especially labs because of the flooded number of back yard breeders that are out there. Costs involved with ensuring a dog is fully checked out and registered before breeding is very expensive. Here's a generalized break down.

Hips and elbows x-rays and then OFA fees = $350
CNM and EIC = $200 plus vet fees and shipping those samples.
Various health checks and blood draws for testing required by stud owners = $200+
Stud fee = $600-$1500
If the ***** won't stand for the stud dog insemination would be required which is another couple hundred plus collection costs to retrieve semen from the male.

Once pups are born, say 8 pup litter. Can be 1 can be 14.
1st vet checkup = $150
3 Days old, dewclaws removed = $150
Worming and first round of shots = $200
Microchip each pup = $45 each

In the event your female has issues and requires an emergency c-section you're looking at possibly upwards of $1000... that could be if there was even only 1 puppy in there.

When you see pups going for 100, 200, 300, you can see that either short cuts were taken, or the proper care was not given for quality breeding.
 

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Interesting post... It will never cease to amaze me how people put far more effort and require much more of a prospective gundog than the do the person they marry. We see a pretty young thing, fall head over heels, and then could care less about her parents or grandparents, any genetic health problems she may have (ok, or he), etc. and don't give a second thought to having kids. Yet, let someone even suggest that they want to breed their dog and have a litter of pups and they get educated in a hurry....
 

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It's not enough to rely on the pedigree to determine if a dog is a candidate to reproduce as was alluded to in a previous post. A proven pedigree is a factor in the equation but equally important is the ability and accomplishment of the individual dog. A good number of offspring from dogs whose pedigrees are filled with FT winners don't amount to much at all. For those of you looking for a stud dog or planning to buy a pup, look at the pedigree to determine if your chances are good that'll you get a dog that will be capable of doing what you want, but also, it's vital to see the parents/stud work. There is alot to chose from out there, take the time, see the product of the previous breedings, do it right.
 
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