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Discussion Starter #1
I'm going through a contract for a puppy and while almost everything else looked perfect, one of the conditions made me curious to know if this was maybe standard practice or not. I thought i'd get some advice from here first. Here's what it says.

The buyer understands that the following minor genetic defects are not considered serious or life threatening; therefore are
not covered by the guarantee: hernias, un-descended testicular, or under-bite or overbite. The guarantee will not cover any
problems caused directly or indirectly by environmental factors, such as variations of diet and/or exercise, or differences of
veterinary opinions. The guarantee does not cover luxating patella after the initial veterinary check.

Is this normal to include in the contract? Whats the real world impact of these conditions to a dog? Are these detectable in the initial veterinary check?
 

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I'm going through a contract for a puppy and while almost everything else looked perfect, one of the conditions made me curious to know if this was maybe standard practice or not. I thought i'd get some advice from here first. Here's what it says.

The buyer understands that the following minor genetic defects are not considered serious or life threatening; therefore are
not covered by the guarantee: hernias, un-descended testicular, or under-bite or overbite. The guarantee will not cover any
problems caused directly or indirectly by environmental factors, such as variations of diet and/or exercise, or differences of
veterinary opinions. The guarantee does not cover luxating patella after the initial veterinary check.

Is this normal to include in the contract? Whats the real world impact of these conditions to a dog? Are these detectable in the initial veterinary check?
So... hernias, bite, and undescended testicles are common issues but you should be notified of these before you pay for the puppy in full assuming the puppies have been vet examined. Hernias and undescended testes are not major issues but may increase vet costs to repair them. Bite is potentially a big issue or a minor one depending on severity. A very bad bite can mess up the jaw and affect eating and require expensive correction. A minor bite issue probably won't impact anything.

Luxating patellas can be a really expensive and debilitating issue and it is a common issue in smaller dogs. That is why CHIC requirements include checks for it. Some breeders exclude coverage for it based on their fear that environmental factors like overexercise and heavy impact activity can cause it. Personally I would ask the breeder about their experience with it and why to exclude it. The answer may satisfy me. I would certainly want to be assured by patellar testing for multiple generations of their dogs.
 

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(y)(y)(y)(y)(y) (because I can only give one above)

Adding a personal slant here, I tend to think that when a breeder starts excluding several small or large issues that they choose to exclude, that it's because they've had buyers come back to them with these issues.

Not only would I want to confirm with my own eyes at the source any health testing that was done, but I would want to make sure that I can have my own vet examine the pup (sorta too late by then, tho - you have the pup in hand, much harder to send back, and probably on your own dime).

Even if your vet clears them, the seriousness of the bite issue might not be seen til the adult teeth are in. Puppies patella's, especially toys and mini's, are often loose when they're quite young and they can grow out of it.

You can see here https://www.ofa.org/diseases/other-diseases/patellar-luxation what testing can show as present from birth vs later injury. This is why you need to verify the testing. If their breeding dogs are tested normal/clear, I wouldn't expect a breeder to cover the injury from sliding into a chair rounding the corner on wood floors to jump on the sofa and bark unreservedly at the mailman (that was my Sass).

You can not only ask the breeder to clarify why they put those exclusions in, you can ask if they'll amend the contract to account for the life impacting issues that can't be known til the pup is closer to 12 months old. It may not go well, but knowing what I do, I would have to ask.
 

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Discussion Starter #4
Thank you!! That was useful information. I read up on the subject a bit more and I think have a better understanding of it now. I also looked at health history of the parents up to 3 generations and they all seem to have good patellas in their reports on OFA. So that’s a relief as well.
 
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