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Discussion Starter #1
Hi Guys,

I'm after a bit of information on puppy prices. My fiancee and I have decided it's time for us to have our first dog together and have got our hearts set on a labrador pup.
She has never had a dog before, though I grew up with a number of dogs. However, I have only ever had rescue dogs/puppies from rescue centres, so am not sure on what a good price for a lab pup is. I read the sticky above about what questions to ask a breeder, and the lab pups I've seen advertised are approx£350/£400 which is well below the expected price (£550-£700ish) in the mentioned thread. I'm hoping there will be somebody from Hull/East Yorkshire here, who can advise us on what the average price is for the area (the sticky mentions geographical price differences)?

Thanks in advance,

Rob
 

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Hi Rob,

Its reasonably easy to work out if you have a bargain, live in an area with particularly low prices, or are looking at poorly bred litters... give them a call and ask:

- Are BOTH parents hip scored and what are the scores and can you see copies of the certificates?
- Do both parents hold a BVA clear eye certificate and it is dated within the last 12 months (like a car MOT) and can you see it?
- Are the puppies kennel club registered and can you leave with your registration form when you take your puppy home?

The chances are for £350/£400 whereever you are in the country almost without exception these three absolute basics will not have been done.... and you will get all sorts of long winded or sharp excuses as to why, why they aren't necessary, why they didn't hip score because 'she is only their pet and they aren't 'breeders' groan!, that she was eye tested back in 2004 and not since but can see perfectly well... etc etc....

Its hard to give a definitive price on a good litter. But those questions will give you all the answers you need. If they have done MORE than the above as regards elbow scoring, Optigen testing etc fantastic, but for that money I would doubt it. Be aware some of the £600 litters may fall down on the above questions... so just ask them straight out and then if its all above board continue a more pleasant chat! ;-)

Di
 

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PS great job on DOING research before buying, so many don't, and lastly, print this sheet off keep it by the phone and drop the questions in drip by drip... and you can be sure you will sort the wheat from the chaff pretty quickly...:

http://www.labradorforums.co.uk/ftopict-27456.html

Di
 
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Excellent advise from Di.

Can I just add, any breeder worth their salt will welcome your questions, it'll prove to them you only want what's best for yourself AND mostly for the pup. Any breeder who gets uppity about your questions, walk away from, as they are probably hiding something, even if it is only their ignorance.

The other thing to bare in mind is that Labs can vary hugely. Not only in size and shape but also in temperament. Have an idea of what you want out of your adult dog before you go approaching breeders. Do you want an independent dog, a placid dog, a busy dog, a need to be Doing Things dog. Factor in your lifestyle and what you want to do with the dog (Gundog work, Agility, just long walks and general pet dog, etc ) as all of these things will be of interest to a good breeder, as in some cases they may not think their litter will be suitable for you but they maybe able to point you in the right direction.

Good luck in your search. :D
 

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Discussion Starter #5
Thanks for the advice. We spoke to the breeder and weren't entirely happy with the answers we were given so decided to look elsewhere.
As for researching, although I'm very familiar with dogs and puppy training etc, I have never had a pedigree, just mongrels from rescue centres so thought it would be best to research as it's obviously a very different process buying one!

Rob
 

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All excellent advice above as always.

Well done on walking away - so many people don't. When we were looking I had to do the same and in the end waited over 4 months for the right puppy. It was so worth it!

Good luck in your search. I hope you find a decent breeder soon. It might be worth contacting breed clubs in your area to see if they have a list of breeders...?

All the best

Sara
 

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Hi Rob

I bought my Paddy from a farm near Bridlington. He cost £400 a couple of years ago.

I never asked about hip scores etc even though I was aware of these tests for German Shepherds - just never thought they affected labs until I joined here! Touch wood, Paddy's been ok so far.

You've had some good advice from Di as always but just bear in mind that all the testing in the world won't guarantee a problem free pup.

Good luck.

Patrick
 

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Hi,

Well done for doing the research before hand.

I'm in the East Yorks area. There seem to be a few "Lab Pups For Sale" signs on roads round here at the moment. Avoid those like the plague. In my opinion, a decent breeder shouldn't have to advertise like that. I'd also go to a Lab/spaniel specialist - not one that seems to breed different breeds from one year to the next...

My first dog was from a local breeder. Jack's a pretty healthy dog now, but has got awful hips, and it's taken a year of hydro and many thousands of insurance money to sort, and a huge amount of heartache. The breeder was clearly incompetent and I'll never know whether he was deceitful, or just stupid. I learnt my lessons the hard way :-( I would avoid this particular breeder and also the owner's of Jack's mum. Not because I think they're out-and-out crooks, soley driven by money, just because I think they're pretty lousy breeders.

Anyway, I travelled all the way to sunny Brighton to an excellent breeder on the South Coast :whistle: for my second one. :wink:

There's just a world apart on the two breeders and the resultant dogs. Rufus, the second dog is just better bred. Over generations and generations, great care has been taken to breed the best possible dog You see this in his muscle, coat, general physique (and thankfully his hips which we've just had x-rayed). You also see this in his temperament and his keenness to work. Also, I hadn't realised how vital those first 8 weeks were and how important all the work the breeder does in that time to help create a healthy and balanced dog. Don't get me wrong, Jack's adorable, he's calm, gentle and has a stunning head, but the poor guy's just generally not as healthy and physically sorted.

It's not an easy thing to say, and dogs aren't cheap, but don't be driven by price. They all cost the same to feed and look after. If the cheaper dogs not as well bred, you may well pay for it in the long run. Even with insurance, I've still spent hundreds of pounds, just on diesel in driving to the vets.

My advice would be: find the best possible breeder you can. Don't be afraid to travel some distance to get the right dog, and don't worry about waiting to get the right dog.

Good luck hunting!

John
 

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Also, if you do a bit of investigation around these forums, there are a few breeders who post on here that I'd be very excited to get a pup from. Obviously advertising isn't allowed so I won't say any more, but have a read through the breeding forum and it'll soon become apparent who I'm on about :wink:
 

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Hi Rob, lots of good advice on how to find a good breeder :)

I wondered, especially as you mention having had rescue dogs in the past, had you thought about adopting a Labrador from Lab rescue/general rescue?
 

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Diana said:
Hi Rob,

Its reasonably easy to work out if you have a bargain, live in an area with particularly low prices, or are looking at poorly bred litters... give them a call and ask:

- Are BOTH parents hip scored and what are the scores and can you see copies of the certificates?
- Do both parents hold a BVA clear eye certificate and it is dated within the last 12 months (like a car MOT) and can you see it?
- Are the puppies kennel club registered and can you leave with your registration form when you take your puppy home?

The chances are for £350/£400 whereever you are in the country almost without exception these three absolute basics will not have been done.... and you will get all sorts of long winded or sharp excuses as to why, why they aren't necessary, why they didn't hip score because 'she is only their pet and they aren't 'breeders' groan!, that she was eye tested back in 2004 and not since but can see perfectly well... etc etc....

Di
Sorry Di but i disagree with that, my boys parents were all of the above( seen all the certificates) and i brought his papers home with me and he was £400. Up my way alrams bells ring of they are looking for 200-250 pup. But the pups are advertised from unhealth tested parents.
 
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