Did you know that to buy a Kennel club registered dog the breeder does not have to do any health tests ? Lots of people seem to buy dogs thinking if they buy from Kennel club registered dogs that they have automatically had health tests done on the parents. Im sorry to say that's not the case.
Anyone can register a litter on the general register with out a single health test. I want you to just think about this for a moment. So in other words you need to be mindful where you buy your puppy. A person recently told me they had a Vizsla and its the age of 2 and they had spent over 20k in vet bills on this dog. Now that's a lot of money, which of course we wouldn't deny any dog to be well again. But this could have been avoided if the breeders had been doing health testing.
So how can you be sure that a breeder has done the health tests? Firstly only buy from Kennel club assured breeders. Because you will know that to be part of the accredited scheme the breeder has to meet requirements. The requirements are different for every single breed. But lets take the Hungarian Vizsla for example. Requirements are hip scoring, elbow scoring, Glaucoma testing and the annual eye test which looks for any eye health problems. So this is a good start for you.
Then ask the breeder if they have done any other health tests. When you go to see the puppy or visit the breeder ask to see the health certificates. If the breeder makes excuses that they can not find them you will know that no health tests were done.
The Kennel club publish only tests which have been carried out by the BVA which stands for British veterinary association. Therefore the breeder may of used the Australian health scheme and then there is no online record to check up. There is nothing wrong with the Australian scheme and we use it now because they get results back to you the following day. Where as the UK scheme you can wait weeks or months. So many of us are now using Australia. But ask to see the certificates so you know the parents have been done. If the breeder has gone to stud, they should request copies of the health certificates from the stud owner.
In a nutshell do not buy if the parents have not been done. Do not buy if only one parent has been done. Both need to be tested.
Now breeders like ourselves actually do far more health testing than is required by the Kennel club. So we do DNA tests and the results are sent direct to us from the laboratories. Again any breeder will be happy to show you these results.
We need to stop the sales of puppies from parents who are not tested. Other wise we will never eradicate Hip dysplasia and other health issues. But the only people that can stop this trade of untested animals is you. You who are buying the puppy, putting money on the table. If you choose to wait then for a breeder who is doing the testing you will know that you have encouraged a good breeder to continue over a bad breeder who doesn't care about the breed. All they care about is selling animals.
So todays lesson is, wait for the right breeder. Do not just go out and buy off the first person who has a puppy. Be patient as this dog should be in your home for the next 13 years if lucky. If you choose badly now the dog may be in your home for 2 years. So come on folks lets do the right thing. Walk away from puppy breeders who are not health testing their dogs.
Mrs Rachel Savage