I Don't Understand Reputable Breeder Prices, Explain Please
Random, general craiglist or paper ad:
"My name is blah blah blah and I've been selling sable german shepherd puppies for 20 years. None of my puppies have health problems and are vet checked. I have 8 puppies, 5 females and 3 males available. $400 for each puppy. My number is blah blah blah and I live in blah blah blah. Shipping available."
Random, general Reputable breeder website:
"I've been working german shepherd dogs for 20 years. All of our dogs have SCH or working titles to show they can work. All of our studs and breeding females have hips, elbows, and DM checked and health cleared. We breed for temperament, conformation, and health. All puppy buyers sign a contract. Pet puppies are priced $1500 - $2000."
If you're a normal person, working a middle class job, wanting to spend as less money as you could, why would you go with the Reputable breeder?
Here's the thing, it's not just people who live in trailers, but even rich people would NOT pay $1500 for a puppy. I know people should go to shelters more, but let's leave shelters out of it for a moment.
People preach "When you become a reputable breeder, there is no profit. You sell puppies but that only puts some money back into your breeding program. The rest comes from your job income."
Okay, if the money is coming from my job income and I'm not making profit from the puppies, then why in the world am I selling puppies for $1500?
If I want people to buy my puppies and put a dent in backyard breeders hold on dogs, I would price my puppies to compete with the bybs for their customers.
I know there are bad customers out there, but there are good customers out there who would love to buy from a reputable breeder, but refuse to pay that for a puppy.
If I ever were to become a breeder, siberian or german shepherd or any dog, I would consider selling my dogs to under cut the bybs. Yes I am selling at a loss but I'm going to sell for a loss any way.
There is a demand for German Shepherds, and the bybs are cashing in with bad dogs. To stop this, reputable breeders need to do something. I guarantee you if the breeder website above were say, "my pet puppies are $500." 9 out of 10 or 8 out of 10 customers would choose the reputable breeder.
So can someone explain where I am wrong here?
I think you're wrong with your last sentence before you ask where you're wrong :) Most people don't care. They aren't like us. They see cute, they buy it. The go to a place they saw in an ad and buy a puppy. THey know pet stores are filled with puppy mill dogs, they go buy one anyway. Someone sells them a sob story, they buy it. "Most" people don't look longer than 20 minutes for their dog. It's an impulse buy like everything else in their lives unfortunately. It's why there is such a shelter problem.
you're totally misconstrued about breeding and reputable breeders.
agree with you 100%, i also think if you want a dog as a pet, compainon, why would you care if its show line or working line Aslong as its got the right temperment
Trials and training costs a lot of money, and I believe breeders would like to at least get a some of that back. It would be unreasonable to expect breeders to put themselves in debt trying to better the breed.
Because you and others are just looking at one litter at a time and not the whole package
I bought one young female in Germany - paid to have her titled and koered and bred...she came over empty. I lost the stud fee. I finished her titles here...along the way she ingested a foreign object and had surgery....she was bred once by surgical AI and came up empty. She was shown, trialed and koered. She was bred to a highly titled, well bred import. She had one normal pup and 2 dwarfs. At 2 days, one pup was not doing well...that pup went to the ER, was given blood transfusions, and tube fed...it ended up a dwarf. Spayed and gave away female...Spent and lost nearly $10K on this female.
Bought another one - had several empty breedings - all vet work still done and 3 litters....then got an infection being bred and was spayed....so those litters helped fill in the money pit a bit, but still cost money to produce.
Bought frozen semen in Europe....have stored it over 10 years at over $100 per year. Have done 4 surgical AIs with 3 females and 3 different vets...never had a puppy. Loss so far - probably close to $9k
OFAs and/or 'a' stamps on every dog I own that I bred or even brought over. With fees and transfer to film from DVDs - average $600 per dog...
Have done several live breedings with no pups....losses for vet testing, stud fees, , lost time from work, hotels, gas etc.
Bought $40K Silverado - put 250K miles on it doing dogs....got 2500 for it at trade in 6 years later.
Dog food is not grocery store brand but top of line...training fees, club fees, travel time, show and koer fees.....do not want to begin to add up. Pups wormed regularly from 3 weeks to when they leave - raised on ceral, goats milk, raw ground meat, yogurt from 3 weeks on, then to kibble. All paperwork done with AKC before pups are 6 weeks old and papers in hand ready to be transferred to new owners.
BYB - get cheap newspaper dog or even ok bred pup or two...let it grow up, feed Iams or Pedigree or Old Roy....female comes in heat, breeds to own male - no OFAs, no blood work, no travel, no time off work to do breeding...no training fees, no show and trial expenses....if pups are lucky, they get shots and maybe a worming maybe even from a vet instead of owner doing it themselves with supplies from Tractor Supply....
And that is just a quick and dirty skimming over summary....
I once told by someone
do not get it from a byb, because down the line you'll lose a LOT LOT more money than getting from a reputable breeder.
My friend had a GSD got from byb, got heart issue, spend over 10k on medical, recently passed away on less than 3yrs old
Do i mind spending 1k over 10 yrs for a dog? no
Impulse buy huh? Okay, what about the buyers who don't buy on impulse? What people looking for a purebred dog but they want a dog without temperament problems? The buyers who refuse to spend that much on a puppy?
Even if they're buying on impulse, people are still influenced by marketing or good looks. If I put in an ad all the information required from reputable breeders, that's going to make my ad "pop" from the byb. They're going to glance over my ad more then the byb.
Don't let my puppies be around or the same price.
By the way, I'm not against reputable breeders. I support them. It's just I don't understand the pricing.
I'll take a stab at it.
A reputable breeder isn't in competition with bad breeders. They are breeding to produce the best possible example of the breed, that will provide a function.
For this, they are not trying to produce 50-60 puppies in a year's time. In fact, they may only have 1-2 breeding bitches. Other dogs may be up and coming puppies, returns, retired breeding bitches, etc.
But having, let's say four breeding females, plus up and coming bitches, and a few retired bitches that you did not rehome when you retired them, and maybe a return or two that you are working with, rather than euthanizing, well at that point you have more dogs than you have time to put into classes, work regularly with, groom, etc, and 28 puppies (4x average 7/litter) x 1.5k = 42k when you subtract the money that it costs to provide food, shelter, veterinary care, stud fees entrance fees, registration, and the works, this would be very difficult to live on. So you would have to have a job to cover the costs of a place to keep the dogs. With a full time job to support them, you have a lot less time to spend with the litters, so 1-2 litters may be all you can do in a year's time.
If you have a lot of litters, you will have to sell them cheaper otherwise you will keep them longer, and be over-run.
Remember that the individual who is breeding for all the right reasons, does not want to create a lot of puppies, they want to create really good puppies. This means paying a lot of attention to each prospective breeding animal. A breeder has a goal. They have a litter, and hold one or two back. They wash out, and they maybe sell one or both of them, and try a litter with a different stud dog. They have a hopeful out of that breeding, while they watch all the puppies they have placed.
Some matches they choose to remove from their program for one reason or another. And because they do not have a lot of dogs, this puts their program on hold for another year or more.
The 7-10 puppies they produce in six months or a year's time, they want to go to homes that have the resources and the knowledge to help their pups reach their potential. You do not have to be able to pay $1500 for a puppy to have that, but when the breeder is only producing a handful of puppies, they can be very picky on where they go. And remember, that when we are picking out the one we want to keep, we are spending a lot of time with the litter, and care about each and every one of them. We want to be able to check up on them and see how they are developing. Because it is all information.
Stricktly from a business sense, you're right, it would make more sense to produce as many as possible and sell them cheap. From a breed fancier's POV, this is the worst thing you can do.
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