|When you plan
to purchase a puppy, no matter what breed it is, you should
always research the breed thoroughly before you bring a new
pup into your home. Read as much as you can and talk to as
many breeders as you can to get the whole picture!
There are several areas for
purchasing a puppy. Commercial breeders or puppy mills, and
pet stores should not be considered. The animals that are used
for breeding from these facilities are usually poor specimens
of the breeds they represent and very rarely are any health
checks done on the breeding pair(s) before they produce a
litter. These animals usually start their breeding life at
6-9 months of age, and are bred every 6 months, until they
die. They live in extreme filth and are usually underfed
Buying from a reputable
breeder who is recognized by its breed parent club, will be
your safest way to purchase a puppy who will live with you
and be your companion for many years. Reputable breeders offer
you a wealth of information on the breed and on the heritage
and health of your dog and will be there for you during the
whole life of your dog.
Your breeder should health
check its breeding pair(s) before breeding. These health
checks may include, OVC (Ontario Veterinary College), OFA(Orthopedic Foundation for Animals,
screening for both hips and elbows, Thyroid testing, screening
the eyes for degenerative macular changes in breeds with known
eye disorders, hearing screening in breeds that are prone to
deafness, and general bloodwork panels to let the breeder know
that all is well with the prospective parents. Most breeders
temperament test their breeding animals at early ages to make
sure they are sound and will not pass on any dangerous traits.
Breeders usually do not
breed a female before 18 months of age, and preferably not
until after 2 years of age, when the entire dog and its
health can be evaluated. Some males are used at earlier ages,
as they mature faster sexually.
In the Bullmastiff breed,
where c-sections are about 75% required, only 3 c-sections can
be safely performed without a lot of risk. As the female
ages, c-sections become more risky. Most Bullmastiff breeders,
breed their females a maximum of 3 times, and always a year
apart. This allows the female to heal inside. Once a female
has had 2 or 3 litters, she is then spayed.
The puppies should be health
checked before they leave for their new homes and should be
micro chipped. If your new pup is not micro chipped, ask your
veterinarian to do this. They should receive their 1st
vaccine and be dewormed.
Never buy a pup sight
unseen!!! Ask for pictures and a video of the parents and the
entire litter. Also obtain documentation
on the parents, such as AKC, CKC registration papers, OFA
Certifications, and health certification for the pup from a
veterinarian. Most breeders utilize a purchase contract. This
protects the integrity of the breed and the puppy itself and
most contracts will include a clause to protect the breeder
from third party liability.
In the Bullmastiff breed
there is a group of people who are mixing the Bullmastiff with
other breeds, such as pit bulls and Labrador Retrievers. They
call these dogs "Working Bullmastiffs".
These are NOT AKC, CKC
registered Bullmastiffs, but mutts. This group offers
registration in the "American Bullmastiff Club" and the
"Working Dog Club of America". These are two entities that
are non existent.
The only recognized registry
in America is the AMERICAN KENNEL CLUB, in Canada the registry
is done through Canadian Kennel Club. The AKC, and the CKC
exist today as it has for many years to assure the purity of
the dog breeds it represents.