Administrator & Alpha Bitch of the Wild Bunch
Join Date: Dec 2001
Location: Michigan, USA
It depends one what means by "gamble" really. If one equates that to a 50/50 coin toss, or worse casino or lottery odds, than I would disagree with the statements that getting a pup from a breeder is a gamble. A buyer doing his/her research and using a reputable breeder certainly has much better odds.
If by "gamble" one means that the outcome is not certain and there is the possibility that things may not turn out as planned and hoped, regardless of how much research is done or how reputable the breeder and solid the bloodline, than I would agree. Had that happen myself as both a customer and as a breeder.
As far as breeder vs rescue vs anything else, the biggest factor to me there is age. A breeder puppy is less of a gamble than a rescue puppy, just based on how much is able to be known about the genetics behind the breeder pup and how much is unknown about the genetics behind the rescue pup.
But if talking a breeder pup vs a rescue adult, now things are different. The older the dog, regardless of where it comes from, the more that is known about that individual dog. The older the dog the less the pedigree is important, and the less any temperament testing or health testing of generations past matters. As the saying goes "pedigree says what a dog should be, the dog tells you who he IS". With a puppy, many temperament and health issues remain to be seen. With an adult, they can be seen. No guesswork based on pedigree and relatives is needed. They are simply either present or not and the chances of things changing in the future are much lower when the dog being looked at is already mature.
So I would say getting an older dog, any older dog, is less of a gamble than getting a puppy, any puppy.
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