Breeder Comparison Matrix

 Characteristic Backyard Breeder Puppy  Mill Commercial
Hobby   Breeder Reputable Experienced Breeder
Has a specific breeding goal To produce puppies To make money To supply the demand To better the breed To perfect a specific type to leave a legacy.
Belongs to and works with breed club May masquerade as a member Hardly ever Has a network of business contacts Extremely dedicated Very active, generally an officer
Has at least one mentor Works independently, lacks guidance Not interested in breed improvement Does not specialize in specific breed Invites knowledge Is a mentor, writes books/articles, conducts seminars
Understands and breeds to the standard May not even know what it is. Uses any available stock. Focuses on general appearance Strives towards the ideal Often helps to define it.
Active in dog related activities (shows, trials, rescues) Often rescues only to attain more stock. Rarely attends shows or trials Does not need to promote establishment; sells to brokers--pet shops, etc. Does not need to promote establishment, sells to brokers, pet shops etc. Shows and trials to prove worth  Shows & trials to objectively test breeding stock. Often judges, provides seminars, writes articles, and willingly mentors serious Hobby Breeders.
Knows the true history of the breed May share false/incomplete info Often pretends to know some. Claims that it's not important. Studies continuously Impacts the breed for many decades
Sells pets with spay/neuter contract and tries to stay in touch with new owners

May charge more for "breeding" papers

Often issues papers via generic "registries" All pups sold have full breeding rights. Yes, and diligently follows up on progeny Always differentiates breed/pet quality and insists on frequent updates
Keeps up with health and  temperament  issues affecting the breeding and provides in depth guarantees May refuse to acknowledge most problems. Considers shows and trials as too "political". No need to, mostly supplies brokers and pet shops Meets minimum standards as required by state law. Goes above and beyond standard requirement Maintains a solid support system --accepts  full responsibility for  every puppy produced
All breeding stock is tested for  genetic diseases affecting the particular breed.

Some occasionally may be to impress consumers.

Only as demanded by consumers -- may give papers as proof of quality. May provide undocumented paperwork for appearances sake. Intensive testing always a priority Often initiates club sponsored seminars and clinics.
Maintains carrier records on all dogs in
gene pool including effected progeny.
Focuses mostly on phenotype--unfamiliar with genotype. Often supplies broker and pet shops, records unavailable. Dogs and puppies are often auctioned off in lots, records unavailable Attempts to continuously track every puppy produced Bases entire breeding program on extensive gene pool data.
Clean, sterile environment always maintained Conditions may vary greatly depending on available income. Often tries to maintain minimum  standards Cleanest and best organized; state inspected Usually "home raised with love" and well cared for. Often cluttered but
always healthy and
mentally stimulating
Expected longevity with any particular breed

Unrealistic expections-- easily  disillusioned.

Will continue as long as the sales are coming Depends on popularity of specific breeds On a mission--plans to stay for the long haul. Involved with the breed/  breeding for decades--makes a lifetime commitment.

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Last modified: Thursday March 25, 2004