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  Eric Talaska 

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Dog, Cat / Pet Adoption Facts and Tips


by Eric Talaska, Dog Trainer and Handler, – Updated September, 2020

Disclaimer: These are examples of what I would do. No medical advice intended. Consult with your veterinarian.


There are a lot of good and bad of each type of place and pet. Here is an easy to read summary. Unlike most professions, there is a disproportionate percent of bad breeders rather than responsible ones.




  • Save an innocent pet's life from euthanasia killing or at least from a miserable kennel life.

  • Adopting from a shelter doesn't support breeders who cause an over supply.

  • Adopted pets usually appreciate and love you more than if spoiled by a breeder before meeting you.

  • Can adopt quickly.

  • Inexpensive, sometimes free.

  • Can shop online via,, etc. Be wary of Craigs List due to scams and irresponsible breeders.

  • Professionalism, organization.


  • If you want a healthy pet under 1 year old it could take some effort to find as those may have a waiting list to compete with. Otherwise the selection may be limited mostly to less desirable Chihuahua, Husky and Pitt Bull mixes.

  • Stringent rules they go by to discriminate rather than reasonably evaluate each individual situation.

  • Background of pet usually not well known, sometimes carry genetic diseases that will cost you a lot and the pet in suffering.




  • Responsible breeder will ensure the parents were screened for genetic defects (ask for proof!).

  • Usually puppies young enough to be more trainable.

  • Can get a certain kind of pet you desire, but not without huge effort.

  • Usually get long lasting education and support which is useful if the breeder is truly competent.


  • Many breeders may be mainly interested in the money because they have something preventing them from obtaining a traditional job such as a criminal record, drug abuse, etc. in which case they don't qualify for government assistance.

  • Nowhere to find out the reputation or legitimacy of breeders. Beware their Facebook, etc. ratings which are biased and anything true and negative is removed. AKC, Good Dog affiliations seem to me to be meaningless. It appears anyone claiming to be a breeder who pays the fee can be affiliated. I have tried contacting them about problems with breeders using their logos with no response.

  • No requirements to be a breeder. Often unprofessional, home based, no recourse if problem. Any idiot flake can merge two pets together and call themselves a breeder. Even if they break laws, the laws are rarely enforced.

  • Breeders may cause considerable embarrassment to you by requiring you list references for them to call. Since they are not professional background checkers, they may call and say embarrassing, sometimes defamatory things to your friends.

  • Breeders often don't allow you to know where they live, to see the parents and to see the puppies until you are ready to pay when the puppies are ready to be taken for adoption. They claim this is for security reasons, but is BS because you gave references, etc. on the application.

  • See pros of shelter: Breeders cause an over supply, leading to shelter pet suffering and killing.

  • Some breeds such as French Bulldogs suffer from inability to breathe correctly all their lives.

  • Beware mixed non-AKC breeds (Aussiedoodle, etc.) bred for looks rather than health, form and structure / no breed compliance.

  • Usually require you sign a contract that often have stipulations they can confiscate your pet if you violate any unreasonable requirements such as not regularly purchasing their proprietary food they make a commission from.

  • Contracts usually prohibit you from transferring your pet to anyone else, even if friend or family. I would not want someone else having any control over my pet!

  • Breeders often discriminate; terminate you from the list, not based on your ability to provide a good home for the pet. The ones flaunting to magically create service quality animals for those with disabilities are often the worse, not tolerating anyone with PTSD, etc.

  • Even if the parents are health screened, the pet could still get sicker than a typical shelter pet. Beware of pets from areas of regular fires / smoke as the toxic air will lead to lifelong health consequences.

  • Time consuming to deal with. Delay of adopting. Limited online shopping; flaky breeder websites.


Adoption from Breeder Tips

  • Act sooner rather than later regarding these essential tips. Never take merely breeder's word for anything. If they refuse, you don't want to do business with them. Any responsible, good breeder will oblige to these reasonable requests:

  • Search for the breeder's name in a search engine, scroll, looking for red flags. If the breeder has a common name such as "Jane Smith" and you don't know the middle name, try searching for the available name plus city and state they live in to narrow results.

  • Require a "full panel genetic test" for each parent, not merely their word,

  • Require a certificate of good health for each parent, not merely their word,

  • Require a copy of the contract they will require you to sign and if not in the contract,

  • A written two year health guarantee for your pet, not merely their word.

  • The contract should not require you buy a certain brand of food. If it does, they make a commission and can confiscate your pet if you don't prove you have been buying it. Run!

  • Choose a pet based primarily on structure (health). Looks or eye color should be a secondary reason.

  • If a breeder's deposit requirement is very low, $250 or less for example, don't assume they are not greedy. They often do that because if they are doing anything illegal, it could be a felony regarding animal transactions in the amount over $250. If they feel like you are likely to tell on them for doing anything illegal (you appear to be a law abiding clean cut citizen), they may drop you from their pet waiting list, usually refunding your deposit to get rid of you before you get them in big trouble.

  • Refer to all the "Breeders" pros and cons listed above.


There needs to be a breeder rating system where the breeder can't remove unfavorable comments as long as the comments meet community guidelines. AKC and Good

fail to allow unbiased, legitimate unfavorable reviews. AKC and Good Dog are biased due to receiving fees from breeders to be listed.




 by Eric Talaska, Dog Trainer and Handler, – Updated September, 2020

Disclaimer: These are examples of what I would do. No medical advice intended. Consult with your veterinarian.




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