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Puppies First Home
Your Puppy's First Eight Weeks in our Home

The glorious day has finally arrived - your Australian Labradoodle puppy is born! I would like to give you a brief idea of what takes place the first twenty-four hours of your puppys life, followed by the final 8 weeks until it travels to its new home.

Mom has been staying close to us for the last day or so, we're sure the time is near. She starts to 'nest," rearranging rugs and towels in her whelping box. She knows where the puppies are to be born, we've laid with her and rubbed her tummy many times over, in this same room, in this same whelping box, explaining to her that this is where she's to birth her pups! The baby monitor has been tested with fresh batteries, and like clock work (just after I've fallen asleep), I hear the beginning sounds of labor. The most productive thing I can do now is observe her, monitor her temperature, give her words of encouragement, and let nature take its course.

Finally, after what seems like hours, but is only about forty minutes, I can see the sack with a puppy in it, two more pushes and the slippery pup tumbles out and mom breaks the sack and severs the umbilical cord, the young Australian Labradoodle's pups life has just begun!

The next few days are critical for the Australian Labradoodle pups, and a close watch is necessary. Now the real work starts, - caring for the whole litter! By the fifth week or so, they're weaned from mom and fed a very nutritious food called Life's Abundance Dog Food, All Stages. Mom spends less and less time with the pups, and I spend more and more time with them!  They're incorporated into our lives at every turn, they romp and run while I'm cleaning their whelping box each morning, then they enjoy a short nap. Once they're up again, and after a noon feeding, two pups at a time, for a two hour time frame, are brought into the living room, kitchen, where ever we go, they go. They learn the sounds of everything from the door bell and phone ringing, to the vacuum going, the other dogs barking, and the kids playing. When they're tired they nap where they fall and wake up to the same normal household noises.

This time frame, with just two Australian Labradoodle pups at a time, gives us a real feel for their personalities, which helps us to make a more accurate match to the correct families.  It also allows them to get to know their names if the families have already informed us what they will be calling them. The Australian Labradoodle pups have a number of areas we call puppy rooms in our home that are designated just for the pups. One room is like a big playpen, with many toys and balls. It has a small staircase with three padded stairs so they can learn the stairs or play "king of the hill" with their litter mates. This also is the time when we put newspapers down, and within a short time everyone is using the paper to do their business on...

The Australian Labradoodle pups have their dew claws removed at birth, they have been wormed at least three separate times, and have had their 1st in a series of 3 puppy shots by the age of 8 weeks, they also receive a thorough examination by a licensed veterinarian.  Lastly the pups are micro-chipped and go home with a spay and neuter certificate that both the families and myself have signed, stating that they will be spay or neutered by a specific date (which is 6 months from their birthdate), after which time the families forwards proof of this procedure from their vet along with a copy of the invoice and I inturn mail back out to the family reimbursement of up to $225.00 towards the cost of that procedure AND the puppies pedigree.  Crate training and beginning potty training, teaching them to sit and lay down, are also services we provide, all included in the cost of your puppy.

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HOW CAN I FIND A REPUTABLE AUSTRALIAN LABRADOODLE BREEDER?
Finding a reputable Australian Labradoodle Breeder is essential. To make your search easier, here are some general guidelines:

  • Contracts
    Most reputable Australian Labradoole breeders will only sell a pet under a written contract. It should state the breeder's policy regarding health warranty and refund/return. It should also explain any other responsibilities of those involved.
  • Support
    A reputable Australian Labradoodle breeder will offer you lifetime support with your pet.
  • Knowledge
    A reputable Australian Labradoodle breeder will be knowledgeable about the breed and the genetic diseases common to the breed.
  • Cleanliness
    The Australian Labradoodle breeder's kennel or home should appear clean and orderly.  They will probably ask you to wash before handling puppies, and even ask for you to remove your shoes.  Disease can be carried in on clothing, tire tracks, etc.  Many Australian Labradoodle breeders will not allow visitors when young puppies are in their home.  They will only allow visitors once puppies have been vaccinated.
  • Frankness
    A reputable Australian Labradoodle breeder should be willing to answer all your questions about the breed and tell you how to care for your pet. They should let you see the environment in which the animals are bred and raised. The animals should appear clean, healthy, and happy.  Due to the popularity of these cross-breeds, many Australian Labradoodle breeders will not set up individual appointments with potential customers, but will schedule open houses for families to come and view the dogs and premises.
  • Screening
    A reputable Australian Labradoodle breeder will ask you questions about your life and home to make sure that the animal they place with you is a good fit for you and your family.
  • Records
    The Australian Labradoodle breeder should have extensive breeding records, pedigrees for the sire and dam, and health records, and be willing to share this information with you. An Australian Labradoodle breeder who is unwilling to reveal this information should be cause for concern.
  • References
    Ask for the names of other people who have purchased animals from the Australian Labradoodle breeder. Contact these references, and talk to them at length about their experience with the Australian Labradoodle breeder, and whether they are happy with their pet.  Remember though, an Australian Labradoodle breeder will not be using references that are going to give negative information, so you will have to assess for yourself what you are being told by those you contact.  There are now many discussion forums where you can post asking information about a particular breeder.  These may be a more neutral location to gather information about any Australian Labradoodle breeders you are looking to work with.

WHAT QUESTIONS SHOULD I ASK THE AUSTRALIAN LABRADOODLE BREEDER?

  • Do you provide a written contract?
  • What health warranty do you offer?
  • What health examinations have been performed on the parents of the animal?
  • What vaccinations and treatments have been given to the animal?
  • Are the animals being raised in a home or kennel?
  • How old is the animal?

SUGGESTIONS

  • Buy a dog for the right reason. Evaluate your reasons for purchasing a dog. Is your purchase realistic or a whim that will fade as the newness of a puppy wears off?
  • Take a realistic look at your lifestyle. Are you willing to dedicate yourself to this animal's care for its lifetime? Do you have adequate fencing and are you willing to puppy proof your home and yard?  Do you have the time for training your puppy so that he becomes a valued member of your family and not a nuisance to you or others?
  • Can you commit to keeping this dog for its lifetime? What does the future hold for you?  If there are many changes taking place in your life or living situation in the near future, maybe waiting for awhile before adopting a pet would be best.
  • Purchase your dog from a reputable, caring Australian Labradoodle breeder who is concerned about the puppies and about you. DO NOT PURCHASE A PUPPY FROM A PET STORE AND DO NOT SIMPLY PURCHASE THE QUICKEST PET YOU CAN FIND. When you purchase a dog from a quality breeder you are getting not only a dog but also the lifetime caring of its breeder.
  • Speak with several Australian Labradoodle breeders to educate yourself about the Australian Labradoodle breed and various "looks". Ask questions about genetic faults, orthopedic problems, bad bites, and general health.
  • When buying, if you are uncomfortable with anything about the Australian Labradoodle breeder from whom you are buying, or about the puppy itself, DO NOT BUY IT !!
  • Involve the entire family in training your Australian Labradoodle puppy, and make sure everyone is using the same techniques.  There are many different styles and methods of teaching a dog.  You want your dog to enjoy pleasing you, so be careful in how you train, or you could inadvertently train your dog to not obey your commands.
  • Do not allow your dog to roam freely through your neighborhood.  Be responsible.  Ensure your yard is completely safe and that your dog cannot escape.
  • If you can't keep your dog, make every effort to return it to the Australian Labradoodle breeder or ask their help in finding an appropriate home for the dog. Do not buy a dog from an Australian Labradoodle breeder who will not take it back or work with you to find it a suitable home.  Many reputable Australian Labradoodle breeders will require that a dog be returned to them if you cannot keep it for any reason.

THE AUSTRALIAN LABRADOODLE BREEDER

There is no license required to breed dogs. Anyone can breed.  Responsible, reputable Australian Labradoodle breeders will be breeding for a purpose, not just simply for profit.  If profit is the primary motivation, you can more than likely assume that corners will be cut, and your puppy may be the one that deals with the ramifications of this.  There is no fail-proof method of identifying reputable Australian Labradoodle breeders, but there are some key qualities shared by them.

Reputable Australian Labradoodle breeders are knowledgeable. They know their breed and willingly discuss everything with potential puppy buyers. A reputable Australian Labradoodle breeder never tries to push a puppy, but will share with potential buyers both the positive and negative about the dogs.  They will also help point you in another direction if they feel they are not the best choice for you to work with.  Someone who is desperately trying to sell you on their puppies is cause for concern.

A reputable Australian Labradoodle breeder has done all necessary health checks on both parents and has done their best to ensure they are not passing on serious hereditary issues.

Many people breed their dogs for the wrong reasons. They love their dogs and want to reproduce them, but they have no knowledge or understanding of genetics or breeding.  They want their children to "experience" the process.  They may see an easy way to make a quick buck.  These people produce dogs with unsound temperaments and genetic diseases.   They do not practice responsible breeding, and it is the buyers who will pay the price later.  There are no guarantees when buying any dog, but the odds are better when buying them from a reputable Australian Labradoodle breeder who offers lifetime support.

Do not take offense when an Australian Labradoodle breeder asks you to sign a contract.  Understand and appreciate that this is the breeder's way of attempting to ensure that the puppies they have carefully bred will be cared for by responsible people.  Make sure you understand the agreement before signing it.  What will the breeder do should the puppy prove to have a genetic problem?  Are their expectations of you realistic? Is their health warranty worth anything?  Many Australian Labradoodle breeders state they have a 1 year guarantee.  This is pretty much worthless to a buyer as most genetic issues will not present itself until after this age.  The guarantee is probably designed to give you a sense of security, but reality is, it won't do you any good.  Be comfortable with the warranty before signing.

When you buy from a reputable breeder you have bought a lifetime of support and advice as well as a well bred puppy.

WHAT A BREEDER SHOULD LOOK FOR IN A BUYER

A responsible Australian Labradoodle breeder is going to screen any buyer to ensure that the puppy they have worked so hard to breed and raise goes to a home that is going to love and care for the puppy as much as they would.  The Australian Labradoodle breeder will also want to contact you from time to time as to how the puppy is progressing. And, they will look forward to the buyer sending them pictures and keeping them appraised of the puppy progress.  An Australian Labradoodle breeder who truly loves what they do will show much interest in the puppies they have bred.  Just because they are now in your home does not mean the Australian Labradoodle breeder won't care about their puppies.  Be understanding of the Australian Labradoodle breeder's feelings.

A reputable Australian Labradoodle breeder will be honest with you about the aspects of their breed. You need to be equally as honest about your needs, expectations, and experience, as all of these will play a part in choosing the right puppy for you.  The more information you give the breeder, the more they are able to understand your life, and find the most suitable puppy for you.  An Australian Labradoodle breeder will want the puppy to be placed for a lifetime, so a responsible Australian Labradoodle breeder will put much effort into placing puppies.  An Australian Labradoodle breeder who simply places puppies on a "first come, first serve" basis, is not a breeder who truly cares about putting in the effort to ensure the most ideal situation for everyone involved.

Once you find an Australian Labradoodle breeder with whom you are comfortable, you may have to wait months or longer for one of their puppies.  Use this time to educate yourself, purchase the supplies you'll need for a puppy, and take a good look at your home and yard.  You will need to puppy proof your home, and you will need to check what sorts of plants are in your yard.  Many are poisonous, and puppies like to chew and eat things.  Ensure they will be protected once in your care.  This time is much like preparing for a baby.  There is much to do if you really want to be prepared.  Don't let these things wait until your puppy has arrived or you will be overwhelmed.   Your puppy's future begins now, before you have even brought him home.

AUSTRALIAN LABRADOODLE BREEDERS - Please ask for specific health test information on the parent dogs of any Australian Labradoodle breeder you are considering purchasing from.

It is not always easy to find someone who puts the effort into breeding with integrity.  Look for a Australian Labradoodle breeder who will provide you a lifetime of support after you've purchased one of their dogs.  Make sure they are committed to their breed and are breeding quality, healthy dogs.  It is up to you to ask the appropriate questions and determine whether or not you would be comfortable with them and whether or not you feel they are committed and ethical.  Look beyond the marketing and image portrayed, and try and see or hear what is happening behind the scenes.

 

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© 2010 Australian Labradoodles Midwest Connection. All Rights Reserved. Established 2005
ALMC reserves the right at any time to hold back a puppy for our breeding program.