Not all Golden Retriever breeders are reputable. The following information will help you to be better informed about what to look for before buying a puppy:
1. Beware of breeders advertising "Rare, White, Golden Retrievers", "British Whites", "Platinum Blondes", "Ultra Lights" etc.
Many breeders are exploiting their dogs for a profit. The AKC deems the light color "undesirable" so most American breeders only breed shades of gold. Outside of this country, the "cream" color (the term for what looks white or off-white) is acceptable in the show ring and VERY common. They are merely "cream colored" Golden Retrievers with English or European lineage.
2. Beware of breeders charging exorbitant prices for their puppies.
The price for an AKC registered "English style" golden retriever with hip, heart, eye and elbow clearances as well as Champion bloodlines from a great, reputable breeder is never more than $2,000 - $2,500.
3. A good, reputable breeder NEVER advertises "unlimited registration available".
4. A good breeder will ask you a lot of questions about the home
you will provide for a puppy.
If you feel you have to prove yourself as a good owner, that is GOOD! A reputable breeder cares where their puppies will live out their lives.
5. A good, reputable breeder will invite you to their home (if you live close enough) to meet them, their dogs and to see the environment where the dogs are living.
6. A good breeder will have pictures of their dogs with all of the dog's information listed on their website.
This includes both parents' registered names, ALL health clearances including hip, heart, eye and elbow, and pedigree information , etc......
7. Beware of breeders who do not list all of their dog's clearances or say that these clearances are not necessary.
1 in 5 golden retrievers is diagnosed with hip dysplasia. 1 in 10 are diagnosed with elbow dysplasia. Although not as common, eye and heart problems also occur in this breed. Don't settle for only some of these tests, but all must be performed!!! (See Great Resources for more information).
Please note: Some breeders will lie about having the clearances done or say their vet said they are fine. ALWAYS ask for proof in the form of clearance #'s. It is your right as a new puppy owner to have these BEFORE purchasing a pup!!!!
Parents of said litter should be at least 18 months old (preferably age 2 especially for females) prior to breeding as well!!!
8. A good breeder will educate you about owning a golden retriever
www.k9data.com - an online database of golden retriever pedigrees. This is an excellent resource to research a dog's pedigree and clearances. Many great breeders will have this linked to their own website.
www.offa.org - The Orthopedic Foundation for Animals. At this website you can verify all of a dog's clearances by simply inputting the registered name or AKC number.