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Old 08-20-2014, 08:14 PM   #1 (permalink)
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Default Breeder's responsibility for puppy that has diabetes

Hi Everyone, this is my first post and I need your advice. My husband and I recently got our first dog, a 8 week old purebred GSD puppy from a reputable breeder. He is now 6 months old and after spending $1200 in vet bills they have determined that he has diabetes and will need insulin twice a day and may develop cataracts in the future. We also had a specific test done for EPI. The breeder has offered to take the dog back and/or give us another dog from another litter. We love our puppy and he is a really good dog that is now a member of our family and gets along well with our cats. We plan to keep him and do whatever is necessary to keep him healthy.

Our question is this, realizing that we will have additional expenses for the care of our dog for the rest of his life should we request the breeder return our purchase fee or ask for half of the vet bills we have incurred.

Last edited by Winfield; 08-20-2014 at 08:21 PM.
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Old 08-20-2014, 08:22 PM   #2 (permalink)
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If its not in the contract, then they aren't legally required to give you anything.

If they have half a conscious, they will return the purchase fee or help with some vet bills. Its worth it to ask.
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Old 08-20-2014, 08:23 PM   #3 (permalink)
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Neither.

You should find the contract that you signed and abide by the provisions in the contract.

Diabetes is rare in GSDs. This is the first one I have heard of, especially so young. There is no way that any breeder can produce a dog that is free of any problems throughout the course of their lifetime. This is one that we do not health test for, it is not like HD or ED or DM, etc. EPI is much more common.

The breeder offered to replace the puppy. You are choosing to keep the puppy. Depending on what your contract says, the breeder may be more than fulfilling their end of the deal.

On the other hand some breeders will give some sort of refund for a dog that is having issues, regardless of the contract, but that is up to the breeder. Trying to compel a breeder to do something beyond their contract won't work.
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Old 08-20-2014, 08:26 PM   #4 (permalink)
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What kind if diabetes? Mellitus or insipidus? Mellitus is very very very rare in a young dog. Like unheard if rare. Insipidus could be congenital or trauma related.

Personally, I would be going to an Internest to figure out why your puppy has diabetes. In my 20 years as a vet tech, I have never seen a puppy with diabetes.

If it's congenital, I would look at my contract and see what it says.

Good luck with your puppy!!!!
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Old 08-20-2014, 08:35 PM   #5 (permalink)
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I think them offering another puppy, is admirable and typical/standard. I do not think they owe you any money. You bought a living, breathing, unpredictable, animal. If you adopted a human child that later in life came down with asthma, autism, etc...you can't try and get your adoption fees back....it's just life.

I'm learning that this "health guarantee" is a pretty american thing. You go to a breeder, they do their part of testing (health and temperament), nature does it's part...and you take a gamble (less or more depending on breeder's standards for their breeding stock). Once the pup lives in your home, as long as there isn't anything obvious from neglect/disease in that beginning week, the rest is your responsibility, imo.

I do not understand this "right" to money if the dog develops issues (especially when the breeder did everything THEY could with their breeding stock). Frankly, I don't think there is a right to a new puppy either, but I know a lot don't agree with me there. And I do believe an ethical/caring breeder would offer the puppy, but I don't think it's a RIGHT of the puppy buyer. If that makes sense.

Good luck, OP. Sorry you are going through this. Unfortunately, it's a risk we take in bringing any living thing into our responsibility/home.

ETA: Of course if there is a contract, those terms should be met (regardless of what I think "rights" should be)...which I'm guessing the replacement pup was the terms...

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Old 08-20-2014, 10:44 PM   #6 (permalink)
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I am sorry that you are faced with this dilemma, but to be reasonable, I would send the dog back to the breeder and get another pup. You will love the next one just as much.
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Old 08-20-2014, 11:15 PM   #7 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Kovic View Post
I am sorry that you are faced with this dilemma, but to be reasonable, I would send the dog back to the breeder and get another pup. You will love the next one just as much.
So what do you think will happen to a dog that has a lifelong illness? With good conscious could you return a dog that will most likely get PTS, because let's be real here, no one wants that responsibility after you have had it for 6 months? I know I couldn't and I couldn't tell someone else to do so. To the OP, read the contract, talk to the breeder. I'm happy that you plan on keeping the dog and doing what is right for him.
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Old 08-20-2014, 11:29 PM   #8 (permalink)
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If I had a dog that was diagnosed with a lifelong illness at 6 mons., I would most certainly would have it euthanized. I consider two things; the quality of the dog's life and the quality on my own.
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Old 08-20-2014, 11:29 PM   #9 (permalink)
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mistakes have been made many a time on a diagnosis .

as someone else has said this would be extremely rare occurrence .

what test were done and how did this vet come to this conclusion.

would a second opinion be warranted.
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Old 08-20-2014, 11:39 PM   #10 (permalink)
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Quote:
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If I had a dog that was diagnosed with a lifelong illness at 6 mons., I would most certainly would have it euthanized. I consider two things; the quality of the dog's life and the quality on my own.
Diabetes is not a death sentence and manageable. The dog can still have a good life, just like people that have diabetes. We had a dog with diabetes that lived to be 16 and she had a good life. Giving a shot a couple times a day is not a huge inconvenience if you love the dog.
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