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Hi, I’m new here and have never owned a dog before so I’m trying to do lots of research and make sure I go with a reputable breeder. Does anyone have experience with Darla’s Red Standard Poodles? I searched but couldn’t seem to find anything on this forum.
 

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I'd looked at her site recently after the name came up somewhere.

Some background first.

I'm compiling a list of breeders that have been recommended by PF members thru the years. It's located here and is a work in progress


I haven't added Darla's yet but she meets the minimum criteria I set of doing health testing on the breeding parents. What I don't see is the full set of OFA/CHIC Minimum testing results listed for each sire and dam. This doesn't mean it isn't done, or won't be done, but I'd suggest familiarizing yourself with that and asking them when/if you make contact.

That's just a starting point for a conscientious breeder. It's a big challenge to find a breeder who meets every personal criteria, so after you decide what's most important to you, then you can decide what you might want to take a chance on.

There are two other things off the top that I personally am not fond of.
One is the contract requirement to purchase and give a specific supplement to your pup or potentially void her guarantees under the contract if you don't. I've actually seen more than a few breeders requiring or suggesting this supplement.
The other is requiring spay/neuter by 10 months. This is counter to current science which is to wait til any pup is physically mature before neutering. The developing hormonal system is vital to long term health for the whole body.

Read thru any breeder contract very carefully. Make sure you fully understand what they require of you to continue or fulfill the contract and that you're willing to do those things, and be sure you fully understand what they will do under the contract terms in the event of whatever.

Some breeders will amend certain terms if you and they discuss and agree. Generally, tho, I find the contracts favor the breeders.

I'm going to drop in my personal breeder checklist, which doesn't need to be yours, but it might help you when looking at breeders, as will looking thru the resources in the Breeder List.

I'd say it's worth contacting Darla's to ask some questions.

Stay in touch!

--------------

My ideal breeder is someone who is doing this because they love the breed. They want to see each new generation born at least as good as the previous, ideally better. They provide for every dog in their care as if that dog is their own. They will be there for the new family, and stand behind that pup for it's lifetime, rain or shine, with or without a contract. They will know the standards and pedigrees of their chosen breed, health and genetic diversity of their lines, and breed to better them. They will know of the latest studies in health standards for their chosen breed and variety.

They will have as many questions for me as I do for them. They invest in their dogs. They don't expect the dogs to support them.


Breeding Program
! to maintain, improve, strengthen the breed
by breeding to standard, for health and genetic diversity,
and will prove their dogs meet these standards by showing or competing
or by breeding from titled parents. It's not the title, but what it shows
! focus is on quality, never quantity
! they do not cross breed
! they limit breeding to one to two breeds
! they limit breeding to only a few litters per year

Breeding Parents
! registry information available
AKC Registry Lookup
Dog Search
! not too old or young for breeding
! not overbred
see Asking questions from a breeder
and Frequency of Breeding a Bitch
! genetic health testing done appropriate to breed and variety
! other health testing by exam such as annual eye, hips, patellas
! results of testing on own website, OFA site or testing lab
see Health Related Publications - Versatility In Poodles, Inc.
and OFA Lookup https://www.ofa.org/look-up-a-dog

Living Conditions
! in home with family
! breeder allows, even encourages home visits

Puppies
! routine and urgent vet care, immunizations, dewormings
! socialization
! first groomings
! registry papers
! they will not require spay/neuter before physical maturity
! health "guarantee" generally favors the breeder, not the buyer.
health guarantee is no replacement for health testing of dam and sire.
beginning housetraining is a bonus
temperament testing is helpful

Advertising
! individual website to detail history of breeder, goals for their program
! information on dams, sires, puppies
! no trend pricing for color, gender or size,
! no marketing gimmick terms like "teacup" "royal"

! Anything not found on the website should be provided by breeder before buying

If a breeder wants me to believe that they believe in their dogs, they won't stop the investment when it comes time to find the new families. If they want to cut costs by using free advertising sites like craigslist or listing on retail marketplaces like puppyspot or puppyfind, or other classified ad sites such as newspapers, I wonder what else they've cut costs on.

Contact a few breeders to introduce yourself. Even if they don't have or don't offer what you're looking for, it can be a close knit community. They may know where to refer you.
 

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Discussion Starter #3
I'd looked at her site recently after the name came up somewhere.

Some background first.

I'm compiling a list of breeders that have been recommended by PF members thru the years. It's located here and is a work in progress


I haven't added Darla's yet but she meets the minimum criteria I set of doing health testing on the breeding parents. What I don't see is the full set of OFA/CHIC Minimum testing results listed for each sire and dam. This doesn't mean it isn't done, or won't be done, but I'd suggest familiarizing yourself with that and asking them when/if you make contact.

That's just a starting point for a conscientious breeder. It's a big challenge to find a breeder who meets every personal criteria, so after you decide what's most important to you, then you can decide what you might want to take a chance on.

There are two other things off the top that I personally am not fond of.
One is the contract requirement to purchase and give a specific supplement to your pup or potentially void her guarantees under the contract if you don't. I've actually seen more than a few breeders requiring or suggesting this supplement.
The other is requiring spay/neuter by 10 months. This is counter to current science which is to wait til any pup is physically mature before neutering. The developing hormonal system is vital to long term health for the whole body.

Read thru any breeder contract very carefully. Make sure you fully understand what they require of you to continue or fulfill the contract and that you're willing to do those things, and be sure you fully understand what they will do under the contract terms in the event of whatever.

Some breeders will amend certain terms if you and they discuss and agree. Generally, tho, I find the contracts favor the breeders.

I'm going to drop in my personal breeder checklist, which doesn't need to be yours, but it might help you when looking at breeders, as will looking thru the resources in the Breeder List.

I'd say it's worth contacting Darla's to ask some questions.

Stay in touch!

--------------

My ideal breeder is someone who is doing this because they love the breed. They want to see each new generation born at least as good as the previous, ideally better. They provide for every dog in their care as if that dog is their own. They will be there for the new family, and stand behind that pup for it's lifetime, rain or shine, with or without a contract. They will know the standards and pedigrees of their chosen breed, health and genetic diversity of their lines, and breed to better them. They will know of the latest studies in health standards for their chosen breed and variety.

They will have as many questions for me as I do for them. They invest in their dogs. They don't expect the dogs to support them.


Breeding Program
! to maintain, improve, strengthen the breed
by breeding to standard, for health and genetic diversity,
and will prove their dogs meet these standards by showing or competing
or by breeding from titled parents. It's not the title, but what it shows
! focus is on quality, never quantity
! they do not cross breed
! they limit breeding to one to two breeds
! they limit breeding to only a few litters per year

Breeding Parents
! registry information available
AKC Registry Lookup
Dog Search
! not too old or young for breeding
! not overbred
see Asking questions from a breeder
and Frequency of Breeding a Bitch
! genetic health testing done appropriate to breed and variety
! other health testing by exam such as annual eye, hips, patellas
! results of testing on own website, OFA site or testing lab
see Health Related Publications - Versatility In Poodles, Inc.
and OFA Lookup Look Up A Dog | Orthopedic Foundation for Animals | Columbia, MO

Living Conditions
! in home with family
! breeder allows, even encourages home visits

Puppies
! routine and urgent vet care, immunizations, dewormings
! socialization
! first groomings
! registry papers
! they will not require spay/neuter before physical maturity
! health "guarantee" generally favors the breeder, not the buyer.
health guarantee is no replacement for health testing of dam and sire.
beginning housetraining is a bonus
temperament testing is helpful

Advertising
! individual website to detail history of breeder, goals for their program
! information on dams, sires, puppies
! no trend pricing for color, gender or size,
! no marketing gimmick terms like "teacup" "royal"

! Anything not found on the website should be provided by breeder before buying

If a breeder wants me to believe that they believe in their dogs, they won't stop the investment when it comes time to find the new families. If they want to cut costs by using free advertising sites like craigslist or listing on retail marketplaces like puppyspot or puppyfind, or other classified ad sites such as newspapers, I wonder what else they've cut costs on.

Contact a few breeders to introduce yourself. Even if they don't have or don't offer what you're looking for, it can be a close knit community. They may know where to refer you.

This was super helpful! I read her contract and also was skeptical of the requirement to buy supplements. Looked up the product and there seems to be no proof that it’s even effective. So that gave me pause. Anyway, I’m definitely going to take a look through the links you’ve posted, talk to several breeders and ask lots of questions. Thanks so much!
 

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You're welcome. Another thing to be prepared for is a long wait.
The pandemic brought a lot of "might be a good time to get that puppy we were thinking of" buyers and conscientious, quality breeders do not pump puppies out like a factory.
Typically, a smaller breeder of any size poodle will have 1-3 litters a year. Look at usual litter sizes and you'll see even without a pandemic a wait is not unusual.
As hard as it is to wait, it gives you time to prepare.
As a first time dog owner, you won't have the "but my __ never did that!" to get over but poodles, due to their sensitivity and smarts, can be a real challenge, even for experienced previous poodle owners.
That's not to discourage you, not at all, but to say that prep time will be well spent.
Once I had a poodle in my life, I knew there was no other dog for me :).
 
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