About a week ago, I received a phone call from a representative of a website called GoodDog.com . The site, she explained, was on a mission, not only to recognize "good" breeders, but also "good" shelters and rescues! They found me on the internet and thought my practices might fit but wanted more info.
She asked to interview me. I was skeptical, considering all of the AR propaganda right now, but I agreed. She put me in the hot seat for about 30 mins, and I LOVED it! As she was asking me questions about my dogs, my breeding program, my puppies, my interview process, my criteria for new homes, etc, I thought to myself "Wouldn't it be great if puppy owners asked all of these questions?"
I answered honestly, and with a bit of pride, for I know that my heart is allllll up in this, as well as my brain (though sometimes, more my heart! Ha!)
Yesterday, she called me back personally to welcome me to the Good Dog Family. I was more excited than I thought I would be. I thought, 'Who do I share this news with? Is this silly to be excited that some rando from across the country took a look at MY website and MY program and decided *I* was a responsible breeder?? I know I am! But still... It's nice to be recognized. It is. It feels nice. It feels real.. And so much more...
What this says to me is that somewhere, there are breeder-friendly organizations who are trying and working for and with GOOD breeders.
Now, I know some people will say there is no such thing! I am prepared to take that heat, because I know the truth. There ARE good breeders. There are people who are not looking to add to their bottom line and make a living off the backs of their pets. There are people who believe, as I do, that MANY purebred dogs are on the "endangered" list. There are others who feel, as I do, that if people stopped breeding responsibly, we would run out of GREAT dogs. It seems preposterous, given the plight of animal population, but hear me out. If the ONLY breeders who existed were the ones whose dogs ended up in shelter and rescue, I promise you that the breeds we know and love would no longer be recognizable. That, my friends, makes me very uncomfortable.
Rescue and shelter dogs are AMAZING. Do not misunderstand me! They are not for everyone, though. Some people - rightfully so - would like a predictable companion. They would like to be able to rely on certain traits such as size, temperament, trainability, coat type, etc. They are willing to reach out, be interviewed, make friends with, visit, and support "good" breeders. That is their right. It doesn't have to be one or the other!
I commend any and everyone who donates (time, money or goods!), fosters, adopts. I have done all three and more, including organized fundraisers with my fellow club members, which mean sharing the proceeds with breed-specific rescue. Most "good" breeders have. Every great breeder I know has had a hand in rescue. We go to great lengths to ensure our own are never in shelters and rescue.
Anyway, That is my exciting news. :)
Now, back to Cocoa's hair!