In order to ensure safety and health the following requirements are to be followed by the Guardian Home family.
What guidelines do I have to follow when raising the puppy or dog?
The family needs to feed one of the foods off of the Premium Dog Food list we will provide you. We are advocates of health nutrition for dogs, and for feeding foods that will not cause health issues down the road, things like cancer or tumors or allergies, etc. The foods are easily found at most pet stores or online. We would recommend all dog owners to consider these foods for the lifetime health of their pet.
We ask the family to avoid all chemicals unless necessary, and to not give supplements or medicines unless approved by us.
If the dog becomes sick or injured, we need the family to notify us right away so we are involved in all decisions regarding the treatment of the dog. In many cases we can save the family a lot of money if it is a simple issue, and in other situations the treatment may need to be specific if the dog is going to be bred soon, or is pregnant.
We ask the family to practice safe handling of the dog. Do not leave the dog outside if they are not at home. Don't let the dog sit in the back of an open pickup. Use a leash in public. Provide basic obedience training so the dog has manners. All these things should be done to protect your dog.
What age do you start breeding the dog?
As soon as the family is aware the dog is in heat in a cycle we need to be notified, We usually breed females on their second heat, which usually starts between 18 and 24 months. We will have them arrange to have her here or pick her up by about day 5 of the heat cycle. She will remain with us for about one week and then return home. If preferred the dog can stay with us for the entire heat cycle thereby avoiding the mess and stress of it or the dog may return here daily.
What happens during pregnancy and what do I have to do differently with the dog?
Pregnancy is actually very easy. The dog may act a little more tired, or not eat normally for a few weeks. The last couple weeks of pregnancy she is usually becoming hungrier and sleeps more as time progresses. Otherwise, normal activity is typical and it is important to continue with walking the dog right up to the end. This helps during delivery. Being in shape is always best. Normal play and romping and running during the first half of pregnancy is great. After that, we limit activity to walks on a leash and no ball chasing type of activities. We suggest adding ¼ cup of yogurt or cottage cheese every other day and a raw egg twice a week during the last 2 weeks of pregnancy to give extra nutrition.
No chemicals may be given during pregnancy. We suggest no vaccinations, worming and heartworm during this time. If there is an illness or injury we ask to be involved in determining how she is treated.
What happens when she is ready to have her puppies?
Your dog will return to us a week before she is due so she can settle in. Dogs are usually pregnant for 63 days give or take 3 days We will whelp and raise the pups and mom will come back home when the pups are 8 weeks old.
Can we visit her when she has the puppies?
You and your family are welcome to visit. No other visitors are allowed due to the risk of bringing in a lethal virus (Parvo) to the pup. The mom usually is VERY focused on her babies the first two weeks after she has her pups. Usually by the time puppies are two weeks old the mom is ready for little breaks from the puppies and enjoys seeing her family much more than earlier in the process. She is settled into being a mom and things are much happier for all involved during the visit. We ask that you try to decrease the odds of bringing in a fatal virus by bringing in freshly washed sneakers putting them on at our front door or using provided shoe covers. We will ask for you to wash your hands before handling pups.
How long do you wait between breedings
The dogs generally cycle every 6-10 months. As long as your dog is healthy and up to having a litter we are very flexible as to when the breeding will be done but don’t want to wait more than a year between breedings unless there is a medical reason to do so. Current medical studies show that it is healthiest for the dogs to be bred back to back without skipping heat cycles. She will not be bred before 12 months of after 6 six years. Most females average 4-6 litters. We contract for up to 4 litters but our goal is no more than 4 litters.
Sometimes we don’t breed at all. So the number of litters depends on each individual case. We consider a litter 4 or more pups so if a mom has only one pup we don’t count it as a litter. A female averages 4 litters in our program. If the puppies are exceptional quality there could be an extension.
The Guardian Home puppy or dog is part of the Guardian Home’s Family forever, while the breeding rights are retained by Texas Doodles for a set amount of time (each situation is slightly different so we prefer to work out specific details with each family on an individual basis.) Once the Guardian Dog has completed his/her breeding career, he/she will be spayed or neutered at our expense and the dog will remain a forever pet of their Guardian Family!
What if I have a male guardian dog?
Male guardian dogs are usually used for breeding after 12-18 months. We ask that you make your dog available for breeding. Most of our guardian boys aren’t used for breeding very often. A male dog will be in our home about 5-7 days for a mating and will return to his home afterwards .
Where can I board my dog?
If you ever need boarding we would love the opportunity to watch your dog as long it fits in with our family schedule. Otherwise you would board your dog as you would any pet when you vacation. It is always great to have the opportunity to play with one of the dogs we produced. We love the additional opportunity to interact with the dog and family at no cost.
Does this negatively affect the dog emotionally to go from the guardian home to the breeder's home?
No. There is an initial "Where is my family going?" when she comes to us, but in every situation the dog is settled and comfortable and doing very well within an hour or two. Remember they will already “know” us from being with us from birth, the times we have taken them for testing or when we have “dog sat” for you. We give them so much attention and love that it is a pleasant and enjoyable experience for them. This is also important as everything the mother feels causes things to happen inside her body that can affect the babies. The less stress and the more relaxed she is, the better it is for babies. So, it is very important that the guardian home not make the transition difficult for the dog. If they act upset or nervous or sad about leaving her, she will feel that even more greatly and we need to make sure that doesn't happen. Bringing her and hanging out with her for an hour or so and just pretending like it's any other visit you'd make is very important. If we can have the family sneak out so the dog isn't even aware they've left, that is usually best too. She rarely acknowledges for more than a couple of minutes that anything has happened.
What happens if the puppy gets sick or injured while in the guardian home's care?
While the dog is in your care and home, any illness or injury that happens is your financial responsibility, just as it would be if you had a non guardian pet. We need to be involved in knowing what is going on and determining medications, but the family is responsible for those expenses. We have your dog’s best interest at heart so it is good to have us to consult with. If you are negligent and your dog is lost or dies when in your care we will ask for you to be responsible for our financial loss, the cost of the dog had you purchased a non guardian dog. If your dog is injured or dies and can no longer participate in the program and you were being responsible we will not hold you liable for the loss. Bad things can happen to anybody. Fortunately, we have never had a serious injury or loss.
What expenses do the guardian family pay for and what things does the breeder pay for?
The guardian home pays for any normal care items for the dog. Food, dishes, leashes, beds, normal vaccinations, wormings, preventative tick, flea and heartworm treatments, toys, etc.
The spaying or neutering surgery of a dog will be covered by us. This is usually about 2 months after her last litter of puppies is weaned or for male dogs before their sixth birthday (usually before).
We pay for all expenses related to health testing for breeding purposes, all breeding related expenses and litter expenses. All breeder dogs will go through initial testing at 1 1/2-2 years of age.
What happens if the dog doesn't pass a health test like you want them to for becoming a breeding dog?
Our standards are very high. We adhere to the quality requirements of the CKC, GANA, and AKC as well as our own quality ideas. Remember, that breeding quality and pet quality are two different things. Just because a dog may not be the best breeding candidate doesn't mean she/he isn’t the perfect pet. Your dog can pass all the tests and we still may decide to remove it from the program. We aren’t bashful about removing dogs from our program. You will still have gotten a quality dog for only the normal costs of having a pet.
What Are the Benefits of Being a Guardian Home?
A Guardian Family gets the very best that Texas Doodles has to offer in the doodle! This means that we choose our breeding stock based on the best qualities that are outlined in our breed standard with temperament of course coming first. Another wonderful benefit Guardian Families is that their Guardian dog or puppy will be completely health tested by around 2 years of age at the expense of Texas Doodles prior to entering our breeding program at no cost to the Guardian Family. Our Guardian Families get to enjoy the excitement of being a part of our breeding program, and seeing the offspring of their very own Guardian dog be placed with families across the country bringing others the same joy and happiness that they have received from their Guardian dog!