As a responsible breeder, we focus our efforts on bettering the Ridgeback breed (and previously the Siberian) through showing, breeding, historical research and ongoing study, mentoring relationships, club memberships, showing, raising and training.
We have worked to become experts in Ridgeback health, heritable defects, temperament and behavior. We dedicate ourselves to educate and screen potential buyers and provide follow-up support after purchase. We take lifetime responsibility for the animals we breed.
Raising sound, healthy, well socialized puppies is difficult work with some very specific demands. Quality breeders care about the animals they produce, and most say that if someone is making money breeding puppies, that person is doing something wrong! #ResponsibleBreeder
“A breed standard is a great place to start to learn about the important points - color, size, traits - of our breed. But is that enough when looking to purchase a puppy? A responsible breeder is undoubtedly necessary to help you understand the intricacies of the breed and assisting you with ridgeback care, understanding behaviors and needs."
1. We will provide a list of specific health checks done on adult dogs before they are bred and/or on the puppies before selling them. For ridgebacks this goes beyond the obvious OFA Hips and Elbows (OFA). We also complete other screenings that are outlined in the Canine Health Information Center (CHIC) which include a complete thyroid panel from an OFA approved laboratory or ACVIM Board Certified Internal Medicine specialist, cardiac certification, Companion Animal Eye Registry certification (CAER). Additionally, DNA testing is completed for the autosomal recessive genetic diseases: degenerative myelopathy (DM) and Early Onset Adult Deafness (EOAD). Finally, our puppies are checked by ourselves and from other experienced breeders and our vet experienced to ensure they are free from Dermoid Sinus.
2. We provide a lifetime “take back” guarantee and will require by contract that you return the dog or get approval for a new home if you cannot keep him. We will do everything in their power to prevent our puppies from winding up in an animal shelter or a pen in some friend of a friend’s backyard. We require that if you must ever give up the dog, he / she MUST come back to us as a breeder or to a new home we have screened.
3. We require a written (or on-line) application from you. Good breeders put a tremendous amount of work into their dogs. We care deeply about their animals and will not to sell them to “just anyone.” We know from experience what kind of homes are likely to be the very best for the dogs they have produced. We therefore require a written application and will screen our buyers carefully to make sure they have the proper home, lifestyle and finances to properly care for their new puppy.
4. We will make sure you know the breed’s temperament and needs. All breeds have special characteristics. For example, a ridgeback is a people dog and they do not do well kept in a kennel out in the backyard. Ridgebacks are indoor dogs and always want to be next to you. We want to make sure you understand those traits of our breed. The ridgeback also is best obedience trained. An untrained ridgeback is a nuisance. Finally, when we sell a dog we always will point out when a puppy has a “fault” or a trait that is not exactly to breed standard. For example, we may say “This puppy has excess white (or a short ridge, or a kinked tail), so we won’t be able to show him.” We work to be honest and want you to know the specifics of breed and the puppies we are selling.
5. We will provide a written contract with specific requirements and guarantees. Your signature on a well written contract with health guarantees, a spay/neuter requirement for “pet quality puppies,” and specific recommendations for care and training.
6. We will provide a written health record for your puppy. This will come from a vet licensed in the state of Florida and include the date of whelping, any health problems he has had, the date and kind of each shot he got, and the dates of worming and drug that was used.
7. We carefully plan each litter. You will need to be patient and wait for your puppy. We suggest that you ask to be put on a waiting if we do not have puppies at the time.
8. We welcome you to our home. You will have an opportunity to meet the mother of the puppy and observe the conditions in which the animals are kept. Our dogs live with us and are not in a kennel. Our house is clean, warm, healthy and friendly.
9. We specialize and will only offer one breed of dogs. It takes a lot to get to know a breed and the dogs’ heritage, needs, requirements, temperament and health. We have bred Siberians in the past but are fully dedicated to the Rhodesian Ridgeback.
10. We socialize the puppies. The pups will be accustomed to people and a home environment with visitors. Our puppies get new experiences and we have strangers hold them often.
11. We NEVER allow you to take a puppy before it is 8 weeks old. This is a Florida State law and is verified through the certificate of health provided from a licensed veterinarian. We know that a puppy learns many of its “life skills” from his / her mom and litter mates in the very early stages of life. The difference between a well-adjusted social puppy and a fearful biter can be determined by a few additional weeks spent in the security of the litter.
12. We register all dogs with the AKC on limited registrations. For those dogs not on a spay or neuter contract, we co-own. This makes sure that our dogs do not end up in the hands of non-reputable backyard breeders.
13. We microchip our dogs before they go home. You can add yourself to the microchip registry. If they are ever lost we can be of assistance to get them back home where they belong.
14. We are always accessible. You may call or email us at any time and we will work to find any answer to questions that you may have. We will return your calls when you leave a message.
15. We usually set up a Facebook group of all owners of the litter so you can trade pictures and generally ask questions that may come up.
16. We will help you enter competitions such as AKC confirmation, lure coursing, agility, obedience if you wish. AKC events are great fun and great experience for your dog and family.