When looking for a puppy, it is important to find someone dedicated to producing healthy and stable dogs that posses the endearing traits the Sheltie is known for. We recommend that you ask a breeder the following questions to prove they are trying to preserve and protect the breed they love. Just remember, you should be just as interested in interviewing the breeder as the breeder is about interviewing you. They will become your mentor for the next 15 years of the dog's life, so make sure it is someone that you trust and feel comfortable calling when you need advice along the way.
1. Are they involved in a sport such as conformation, agility, obedience or herding?
This proves that the breeder has a goal in mind for every litter and is not just doing it to make money. It also tells you that their dog's temperaments are stable enough to withstand the pressure of competition as well as traveling on a regular basis.
2. Do they perform the recommended health tests on their dogs?
Ask what testing they have done on the parents to be sure they are clear of any genetic diseases. Read about the recommended health tests for Shelties here.
3. Are they knowledgable about the breed? Are they willing to discuss the breed's strengths and weaknesses with you?
Finding someone that is dedicated to studying the breed and has a wealth of knowledge is immeasurable if you hit any road blocks with your puppy. The right breeder is willing to answer any questions to ensure their dogs thrive in their new homes.
4. Are you able to meet at least one of the parents?
This is a great opportunity to see what your puppy's personality and appearance will be like when full-grown. Pay close attention to temperament to make sure it is the right fit for your lifestyle.
Just remember active breeders are usually traveling on the weekends to competitions, and working a full-time job during the week. So do not be discouraged if they take a while to get back to you. Learn more about what to look for in a breeder here.