Your decision is made, you want to adopt an animal. You've thought about it and you have the budget and the time to take care of it. You also have an idea of what species and breed you seek and what kind of companion you desire.
But where to find it? If breed matters little to you, I invite you to visit some shelters. There is often the rare pearl. On the other hand, if you know exactly what breed you want because its personality matches yours, then you need to find a reputable breeder.
How? First of all, be aware that there is no obligation or training in Canada to accredit a breeder. On the other hand, you can rely on the Canadian Feline Association and the Canadian Kennel Club, whose mandate is to establish breed standards and serve as a purebred registration office, taking into account the “Genealogy of animals”. They suggest, on their site, breeders who meet the criteria of the breed and who provide a suitable environment for their development. You can also have trust a breeder certified by Anima-Québec. This non-compulsory Québec program subjects about 140 criteria concerning the places of care and the conditions of animal breeding, in addition to visiting the breeder who wants to be certified.
A person who is not a member of one of these programs can still be a very good breeder, but you have to be cautious based on several criteria.
• A true breeder should not breed more than two different breeds.
• You should be able to visit all the facilities where the animals are kept. Pay attention to the available drinking water, food, smells of excrement and intense yelping, which would mean the presence of too many dogs. Observe whether the facilities seem improvised or inadequate. Animals should not be caged throughout the day.
• You must be able to see the parents or at least the mother. Study the conformation, general condition and behavior.
• The breeder should not mate his females at each heat and ideally not reproduce them beyond 4 to 5 years.
• The breeder must pay attention and avoid by all means consanguinity. Some use specimens from other continents to ensure good genetics.
• The breeder must test breeding animales to rule out hereditary problems specific to the breed (eg hip dysplasia) and provide the evidence.
• You should be able to see the nursery, which should be a closed room separated from the rest. (The breeder may, on the other hand, issue restrictions in order to avoid the transport of diseases or parasites)
• Puppies or kittens need to be socialized and stimulated young. The ideal is to let them walk around the house to get used to the noises of everyday life.
• The animal should be uniquely and permanently identified with a microchip or tattoo.
• You should be able to choose your pet as a according to its physical appearance and temperament.
• Puppies and kittens should not be adopted until they are 3-4 months old.
• At the time of purchase, the breeder should be able to provide you with a health certificate including at least the first vaccine and first dewormer with the date of veterinary visit. He has the responsability to tell you about any health issues of your new companion (eg, had a big episode of diarrhea). He must also provide you with a written guarantee and a signed deed certifying the purity of the breed.
• The breeder should require you to sterilize your puppy or kitten and has the right to request a sterilization certificate.
• A breeder should be concerned about the welfare of his animals even after the deed of sale.
• The breeder should have taken the time to construct his / her own website where you can find information on the breed, dates of birth, dates of adoption, guarantees, pictures of breeding specimens, old breeders and facilities.
I advise you to visit several breeders before making your choice. You can then compare the different establishments. Do not hesitate to discuss with the breeder to see his/her philosophy and passion about the breed he is breeding. He/she should be able to answer your questions easily and it is also a good sign if he/she asks you questions to know your personality and the environment in which the animal will live. A good breeder should not have difficulty selling his/her animals and beware of those who sell them overly expensive. It is even possible to wait more than a year before having your new companion. Do not hesitate to contact us if you need advice more information or if you have any further questions.
In dogs, heat is only twice a year, but in cats it can be every month