How to Buy a Pet from a Legitimate Breeder/Seller

By Mommy Donna and Kib - February 15, 2021

Having a pet can genuinely change someone's life.

Research says that dogs have a therapeutic effect on humans. Dogs can be your most excellent and most loyal home companion. Moreover, dogs can also be your protector in times of danger.

There is an ongoing campaign called "adopt, don't shop." I also support this cause to help in preventing the stray dog population in the country. The advocacy also teaches people about responsible pet ownership by having the dog spayed or neutered.

However, there are still people out there who would like to buy a pet. These people have breed specifics and will want to get them as puppies. Besides, some people are also particular in the health history of the dog.

Since many people are interested in getting a purebred, they are also lured by fake and dishonest sellers. Some pose as a seller, showing photos of dogs, and once they have reached a deposit, they will disappear. Some will declare that the dog is in top condition, but once the dog is released, the buyer will find out that the dog does not have complete vaccines and is sick.

Our dog, Bach, is a purebred mini-schnauzer. He is given to us by a friend because they're moving to a condo. She carefully chose the people who will have her dogs because she only wants the best for her beloved pets. My friend didn't ask for anything in return, but she only requested to care for and love the dog.

Our dog is three years old. Bach had a major illness last year that required him to undergo surgery. Now, he is doing fine and has been giving us joy and unconditional love every single day.

Going back, I interviewed two dog breeders to give me a clearer perspective on finding a legitimate dog breeder and avoiding getting scammed.

The first interviewee is Mr Jason King, who owns Das Konigshof, a kennel in Quezon City. He has been breeding mini-schnauzers for ten years. 

The second interviewee is Ms Yvette Heart Calimlim, who owns Luna Cerberus Kennel in Molino 6, Bacoor, Cavite. Yvette has been breeding Alaskan Malamutes (standard and giant sizes) and German Shepherd since 2010.

According to Jason and Yvette, here are the questions that a potential buyer must ask the dog breeder:

1. Ask for the breed standards (specific problems and nuances of the dog breed you wish to own). It is imperative to know if the dog is suited for your lifestyle. 

2. Ask for the breeder's background. The potential buyer must also ask people who can vouch for the breeder's integrity. Requesting information about the breeder is important to ensure that the breeder has a good history of transactions with PCCI (Philippine Canine Club, Inc.), the authority in giving certificates for the purebred dogs. 

3. Ask the puppy's parents (dam and sire) to ensure that the puppy is indeed a purebred. The puppy's parents must have PCCI papers too. Ask for the parents' vaccination records, clinical check-ups, and if the mother is sick during pregnancy.

4. Ask the location of the kennel. The potential buyer must have time to visit the kennel as much as possible to know if the breeding area is clean and well-sanitized. There are many puppy mills with poor living conditions, so it is essential to know if the breeder is not just for the profit but also takes care of the dog's overall health.

5. Ask if the puppies have updated vaccination records before its release. The puppies should receive their first vaccination at 6-8 weeks old. Boosters should be administered at three-week intervals until the puppy is 16 weeks old. Another booster vaccine should be given when the dog turns a year old.

6. Ask if there is a contract to be signed by you and the breeder. The agreement will ensure the legality of the transaction and ensure that the puppy is in good condition upon release. Please note that legit dog breeders DO NOT ASK for a downpayment. 

7. Ask about the rehoming procedures. Puppies can be released to their new families between eight to twelve weeks old. The puppies must be trained because it also causes stress to the dog and the mother.

8. Ask about the PCCI registration of the puppy. The PCCI registration will ensure that the breeder is giving you a legit paper. The buyer can later verify the certificate issued to them by calling/emailing PCCI. Moreover, this is to ensure that the dog is bred ethically and the color is the accepted color by the breed (note: mini-schnauzers have only four accepted colors: white, black, black and silver, and salt and pepper. Dog organizations don't accept Liver-colored schnauzers. Teacup-sized dogs are also below the standard so please do not patronize it).

Yvette mentioned that the puppy must have the core vaccines before releasing it to its new owners. The core vaccines are parvovirus, distemper virus, adenovirus, and hepatitis. The core vaccines are given in two weeks interval, starting at eight weeks old. Jason also mentioned that deworming should also have been done before release. The vaccines administered to the dogs come in combination forms (5-in-1 or 8-in-1).

Both Jason and Yvette encourage potential dog owners to visit the kennel at least once. Visiting the kennel will ensure the potential dog owners that the dogs are well-taken cared of and are living in the highest standards. It is okay to buy dogs even if they are from a faraway place, as long as the potential dog owner is ensured of its well-maintained facility. Jason even added that if a trip is a hassle, then the buyer should rethink its priorities.

Some dog breeders offer stud service. Yvette's kennel provides it, and Jason doesn't. If offering stud service, it is essential to know the dogs' history and the arrangement (usually the owner of the male dog asks for one pup from the litter).

Both Jason and Yvette also encourages potential dog buyers to get a puppy with PCCI papers. Check with PCCI if the document is legit by going to their office in Quezon City or emailing them at The PCCI papers serve as a record of the dog's history and identity. The PCCI paper also proves the dog's identification should it needs to travel to another country. 

All dogs are cute and adorable, but Jason and Yvette encourage everyone to do their research before buying a dog. There are dog breeds that are not compatible with their lifestyle; thus, they dislike the dog. Potential dog owners should ask themselves if they want a low, medium, or high maintenance dogs, their purpose of owning a dog, or if the dog breed is fine with children. Jason reminds potential dog owners that dog ownership requires time and money, so if the individual is short of any of the two, it is better not to get a dog at all. 

In closing, Yvette leaves some tips to first-time dog owners.

  • Ask yourself, why do you want a dog? Yvette treats her dogs as her babies because it provides a therapeutic effect for her. 
  • Know your budget. Price of purebred dogs may vary, depending on the quality. 
  • Do your research. All dogs are cute, but some dog breeds have characteristics that may not suit your lifestyle. It is better to read, read, read!
  • Prepare your family, house, and kids. Dogs are part of the family. It is only ideal that the whole family is ready to take care of the dog. 
  • Choose the right food for the dogs and vitamins. Read the label. Not all expensive dog food is good for the dog. Ask around dog owners too on what food they usually feed their dogs.
  • Always make sure your puppies or dog will be check by a veterinarian nearby. Choose the veterinarian that has a good reputation and good facilities. It is preferable to go to a nearby clinic, so for emergency purposes. 
  • Know your dog's needs. Be sensitive if your dog is sick or needs medical attention. As much as possible, DO NOT SELF-MEDICATE. Do not waste time in asking on social media. Bring the dog to the vet immediately. 
  • Be ready for setbacks. Like humans, they get sick, and they have a shorter life span. Be prepared for these events.
  • Relax and have fun with your dog. Dogs are not there to bark to strangers and to guard the house. Dogs can be your playmate too! Have time to play with them and to stroke their fur.
  • Take care of them as if they are part of your family - feed them right, have the dog groom and dogs love cuddling.
  • Be a responsible owner. Abusive dog owners can be sued. Animals are protected by RA8485 (Animal Welfare Act). 

Now, are you ready to own a dog?

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