...........This article is a work in progress, by a few breeders, and may change.......

...........from day to day,  as we add more  thoughts.   last update Jan. 2017.....

                                                       When all compiled we will grammar and spell check


          ...BEFORE:,     you buy a puppy, 

A: Research breeds, and what they are bred for.   Choose a temperament that suits you,  as well as a size and look.        You can visit breeders homes, as well as visit a local dog shows to compare breeds side by side.    A Havanese is a Companion Dog,  not a working dog or  a terrier, but a Family Member inside dog with a delightful temperament that loves everyone and most everything. Choose the breed that you think will complete your family,


Visit CKC Dog shows to see a variety of breeds and talk with breeders,  look up breeders on the CKC Website; Not every breeder who is a ckc member will be listed on the referral list, but it is important for a breeder to be a member and in good standing with the club.  www.CKC.com, has a breeder list of referred breeders.

               90% of Havanese owners, keep them in a

                shorter puppy cut, We enjoy both looks.

****Make sure your Breeder Actually Exists and not a scam.

           puppy brokers are on the rise,  and people selling pups that do not even exist.

B: RESEARCH  Breeders,  Contact breeders and ask some starter questions. 

Before you contact a breeder make sure you have done enough research that you can ask good questions and recognize good answers.

There really is not a single test for responsible breeders, It involves Multi Factors. There are a  variety of ways in which a breeder can contribute to the welfare of dogs, and thus earn the label :

... Experienced, Reliable, Responsible,   ...   ..."ethical breeder."  in your reasearch,  you want to ruleout  the unethical breeder,   the High volume commercial breeders,  the brokers,  the puppy mills,   the breeders that do not certify online health tests,   the inbreeders that do not put $ into their lines with new bloodlines  to keep their lines healthy and strong with Genetic Diversity,  The breeders that put no time into the pups, for potty training,  socialization,  and crate training or raise them solely in the basement, garage or Kennel.   The ones that do not allow Visitors.    The ones that do not stand behind their pups for LIFE, and give you unlimited support, and the ones that offer no support after the puppy leaves their home.

Contact  breeders.  Ask Questions,  and be prepared to answer questions.  BE CONCERNED if the only questions a breeder asks are 'what you would like and how you want to pay! ' Also BE CONCERNED if the breeder has what you want in stock and ready to go.   Good breeders will have a wait list,  and not readily available pups.  (make SURE the breeder can back up,  all her answers)

You should never buy a pup you have not met in person or proven actually exists.  If there is a distance, there should be many emails back and forth and phone calls, and MANY MANY current photo's of your puppy,  and the Dam.                                                                                                                                  You should NEVER buy a pup online and have it shipped to where you enter a credit card and you just click on the Buy Now button.

(some pups sold online do Not even exist, or a broker has bought a litter at 5 weeks old for $200 each and reselling for $800)

 The responsible breeder will ask you some questions about you and your family, and your dog experience,  to correctly  match the right puppy .  They will want references, Likely your Vets #,  as they need information to correctly match the puppy to you.


The 'ethical' breeder

These  questions you can consider  to evaluate the ethical qualities of a breeder.  You need to  consider not just  how healthy the dogs being bred , but the contribution being made to the health and welfare of dogs generally. Part of being ethical is to avoid contributing to the problem and to contribute to the solutions.

C:    ask for their Vets phone number,    a good breeder will keep the Same group of vets for years, and doesn't have to jump around from vet to vet,   from loosing the respect of a vet.  

When a Vet respects his client, he will bend over backwards for her, and promote her. CALL the vet to get a reference.   Often you will just get reception, but if the breeder is a regular respected client,   All of the staff will know her, and of her and her dogs.   You can ask to talk to the Vet if you do not get your answer.  A common question would be,  ''if you were looking to get a havanese puppy, would you buy from this breeder.''   Also ask if this breeder has a lot of health issues or if she has had any, does she actively breed away from them.  The VET knows the Breeder and her business,  The Vet knows the adult breeding dogs,  and the Vet consistantly sees what the breeder is producing,  via puppies. Many good breeders have given their vets permission to talk about them,  whereas some breeders hold strong on the privacy requirements of Vets, and have not given their vets permission do disclose anything. (Ask the vet if the breeder has genetic diseases in her lines,  cardiac, liver,  seizures,  Orthopedic, blindness,  etc.

(if you get this,  keep asking questions,   if not,  say Thankyou & Goodbye)

D:   Ask  for Both Parents online Health OFFA Profiles.  (certifications)  samples Below

  This would include ANNUAL / Certified health testing.    Some breeders advertise that they health test, but do not share with you, if the Mom & Dad pass or fail. They just say they TEST, and they do-- they just do not share that they failed.  Take it to the next step and request the link.  Some breeders test at 12 months & never again.  Patella's and Cardiac  should be certified Annually,  not just one time at a year.  

(if you get this,  keep asking questions,   if not,  say goodbye)

The OFFA  shows the parents testing, and immedate realatives, along with the dates of testing and Date of Birth.

If a breeder Says "WE do not test for those things,  as we do not have them in our lines,    that is Warning bells,  the ONLY way to know you do not have things in your lines,  is to TEST.    If the breeder claims that his or her lines were entirely free of genetic health problems,   this  not possible, as Every being,  dog and human has a fault;   there is no perfect being.  (NO line is 100% clear)

Being that the Health testing  is  online, it takes the breeder about 2 minutes to forward to you,  or less.

There is more testing  that  we do,  but we will discuss this later.   For starters,  make sure the breeder has done,  Up to date, ANNUAL  Eye, Patella & Cardiac certifications. (if you get this,  keep asking questions,   if not,  say goodbye)

Sample of Basic online (minimal)  testing:

Sample of acceptable to some Health testing:


Sample of Full    online  Health testing:

  * sending a client this link takes 1 minute

Note that different breeds,   will require different testing

This is for Havanese.

The breeder should give you  a link to OFA site,  this link should also be on the breeder’s website.                                                  Proof that the parents have passed these tests is something the breeder should be quite proud to share.

If a dog does not have an OFA number or Equivalent - it did not pass!!! It is not certified.  Do not accept any excuses!!

 If you do not get the answers  for the above,  then say goodbye and call the next breeder.

some breeders also do Ears,   we do not have an ear/hearing issue in 21 years,  but if  we did, we would travel to find a clinic.  Some breeders do the ears so that they can get a CHIC #.   I am not in agreement to this,   where breeders think once they get a Chic#,  testing stops and they are done,   It is OUR belief that breeding dogs  should be tested annually, prior to breeding.

E.   Ask to Visit.    you can find out if a breeder also holds down a full time job, or if she is home with her puppies.  Find out if  a visit anytime works.     A good breeder will usually allow and welcome visitors after pups are 2-4 weeks old. ( I personally  welcome visitors to our home,  from Birth onward,  anytime, with minimal notice) The socializing is important.   Be careful of a breeder that does not let you come visit, or needs Lots of advance warning.  It is important to visit to see the temperament of the Parents as well as how the pups are raised.  A havanese Mom, even with pups 95% of the time,  eagerly and welcomes visitors.  Also you will be able to see where the pups are raised, and that they are being potty trained from 3.5 weeks onward, and not raised in a box, where their world is their toilet.   Pups with Early social stimulation, and early potty training are proven to do better in many ways.  What to look for:   a Welcoming Havi Dam, eager to show you her pups, and jump on your lap,   Pups with  living quarters, other than a SINGLE Pee pad lined box to eat, play, sleep and potty in.     a Whelp box {DEN}, is only for the first 3 weeks.   After 3.5 weeks, they are ready to be in a larger safe area,  with an extended play area,  an eating area,  a sleeping area, and a Small Potty area off to the side.  Pups that learn there is a designated spot to potty  from 4 weeks on,  are much easier to house train,  than pups solely raised in a box, or rack pen where they are forced to potty where they eat, sleep and play.    Look for things like Clean Feet- Ltd staining,  trimmed nails,  and social.    Make sure your pup,  will lie on his/her back, without struggle  for at least 30 seconds.   It is normal for the breeder to ask, if you have visited other kennels,  and to ask you to please remove your shoes, and wash your hands. (Apply hand sanitizer, and not to let the puppy mouth your hands)

Ask and view how the breeder socializes puppies.  Playing with puppies is not socializing them. Ask what stuff the puppies will be exposed to.  Ask if house breaking, and crate training will be started (It should.)  What type of environment will the puppy be raised in? (Barn, Kennel or  Living area of the house where they hear LIFE). A breeder should never let pups leave before 8 weeks .Will you be able to visit the litter,  weekly if you want (at least once or twice)?  A big test is  Will the breeder let you stop in, if you are in the area, or does she need you to give her notice to clean up. ?

(if you get this far in your contact,  GO VISIT,   if not,  say goodbye)

You can also see if the Moms live in kennels, or in the home,  as family pets.

You can confirm many things,  by visiting,  including  where the pups are born and raised, and the breeder is not a broker that ships in pups from around the country puppy mills.

Have the puppies been socialized to house noises, vaccuum,  other pets,  children. (Kennel raised pups differ in social skills)

HOW many dogs are living with the Breeder?  

Are they all attended to, groomed, clean, happy,

Whenever possible,  visit the breeders home.  A good breeder will want to meet you Most Experienced Breeders  will not let you choose your puppy but according to your wish list, they will decide which puppy is your best match. A reputable breeder will never allow pups to be chosen at hours or days old, but will watch the pups develop and will choose the right puppy for you.  It is a concern   if your puppy is chosen simply by order deposits received...Personalities do not start to develop for 6+ weeks.

A responsible breeder of Companion TOY dogs, will not have a large Kennel with multiple breeds and many dogs, but a manageable number of dogs so attention and grooming can be given. You should be able to meet all the breeder’s dogs and they should all be very well socialized, and have appropriate Happy,   tail wagging, cuddly, social temperaments. (Even the Dams)  Check out the condition that the dogs are in,  nails trimmed and clean. The dogs should have more of a Life, than living in a cage and  producing puppies. Be concerned if the breeder sells off Retired Breeding dogs,  many have no social skills and no house manners.  People that buy these dogs are usually shocked at the lack of social skills and house manners for an adult dog.

A breeder breeds dogs that they feel will improve the breed and quite often you will find that the breeder will keep a pick puppy from the litter.  WE call this  Pick of the litter. Champion parents generally have pups that will become wonderful pets as well as a potential show pup   To continue future generations of quality puppies, the breeder will be looking for the next outstanding pup to carry on the lines.

A breeder should not not focus on the dog’s size & color, but  on creating a better dog as a whole that meets the breed standard.  Breeding for a color that causes health issues such as deafness and Liver issues is Concerning.  Breeding for Pocket and purse pups is as well a big concern. Be careful that both parents do not have Brown noses.   this is dbl recessive.

F.   Ask to View the PEDIGREE for the puppy, combined,  both parents Pedigree,                 (not just two separate pedigrees, you want to see the 2 pedigrees combined with the COI levels

The coi  is the coiffient  level of inbreeding. Generally a 3  generation pedigree = the coi  to be ZERO. 

If a single anncestor  is doubled up,  you want that dog to be fantastic, with Mega info, background and Lots of open online health testing.

I even like my 4 generation pedigrees to be  Zero  COI.   and NO inbreeding.     Outcross breedings are what our 5 vets recomend,   with the odd occasion   removed line breeding.   This means,   we can breed back into Great Grandpa if it was a good line, without any serious reported issues.  WE do not breed back to Daddy,  or breed brother to Sister.    Inbreeding is not what we consider safe,  but Line breeding can be rewarding if done with lots of knowledge and homework.

An experienced breeder knows that the best male for breeding May not be  the boy in the same house or Province. It  can, but isn't always   a Concern if both parents live on the premises. Are they Related. ?  This is where you ask to see the Pedigree for the PUPPY<  and you want to read the COI,  the coefficient level of inbreeding on a 2,3,4 generation pedigree.   A good breeder does not inbreed,  but uses new blood lines to create Genetic Diversity.  Cost & convenience should not be the reasons.  Some breeders inbreed and use their lines over and over, as it is free, others pay up to $4000 to breed out,  and up to $10,000 to import a new bloodline.  WE like to breed to Improve the breed.  WE can show you  that they are exceptional examples of their breed.

When buying online or through something like Kijjiji,  Craisglist or the newspaper, you will encounter a “puppy broker”.  These brokers are not the breeder, but pretend to be.  The pups come from puppy mills or careless breeders.  You should always be able to meet the dam.  The sire is usually not owned by the breeder.  A good breeder knows the best mate for her bitch is usually not in her own backyard.  To complement temperament or structure, the breeder researches and finds the best dog to breed with.

The initial cost of a puppy from a good breeder may be more than you expected,  But will future expense be worth the savings?  Medical bills can add up quickly when a dog suffers from diseases.  The breeder should activate Puppy insurance or require you to, within 24 hours.

G.  Ask to see Breeders Crudentials,                                                                            Breeding/Business permit,  CKC member #,   Vet Certified  Registered Breeder  (Some Larger breeders have registered. Kennels)

Is the breeder a member of the CKC.   She should be,  although if you call the CKC  for a rerferal on any breeder,  puppy mill or good breeder, you will get the same answer on both,   (She is a member in good standing),  this ONLY means,  she has paid her bill to register pups.  Still it is good to call.

Has the Breeder attended  AND  taken Online Breeding Seminars, is she a Certified Breeder. ?

Also is the breeder active in CKC Events ?  Conformation is very important to a breeder to make sure that her breeding dogs conform to the standard and have good temperaments.    a GOOD breeder will breed show quality dogs to produce Pets, companions and show offspring.     A good breeder does not breed pet quality dogs with faults, but tries to breed away from faults, and better the breed with each breeding.

Also do not buy into the Cheaper dog with no papers,     It only costs $21  to register a litter of pups.   yup $21

Individual dog registrations. are about $35.00

(if you get this far in your contact,  Then you have found a breeder that you can ask more questions of,  or proceed)



H.   Ask to see the Breeding Dogs Portfolio

so, you have Met the breeder,   seen the pedigrees and health testing,    One more question if you want an above Average

PUPPY.  is  Do they compete in any CKC events to prove the soundess of their dogs.

   When a breeder advertizes  CHAMPION LINES<  it does not mean the parents were champions,  or that they conformed to the standard,   it just means, they seen a champion in the pedigree.  Champion Lines,  does not mean the puppy had nicely conformed healthy well temperamented  parents.  (It means  do more homework and a warning Bell.)

When both parents are Champions,   It is nice to know that both parents,   look and acted like havanese.  If they are Group winning Champions,  it would mean that they excelled in structure and temperament.

If you want a breeder with consistancy,  in Structure, look, temperament,  check the stats in Canada, and find a breeder with more than one or two top dogs. This is most important if you are buying a Show dog.

Ask if the parents have any championship titles or Top Dog status as that helps prove they have good and correct temperaments for their breed. A Better than average dog will have Group wins, and Best in Shows.   Also they could have they passed the Canine Good Citizen or temperament test evaluations? Even if you ONLY want a PET, and have no plans to show your dog,  you want to be sure that the dog comes from healthy and sound parents. See if the Breeder has More than One dog in the Top dog Stat's.,(This shows consistancy)  also see if her dogs just have champion lines, champions, or if they excel and win group placements and Best in Shows.           (Champion lines means nothing)

I.   The Breeder  Should have paperwork,  Contract for you to sign.

A reputable breeder will require you to sign a non breeding CKC contract. This contract should protect the puppy, the breeder and the buyer. The breeder will require the puppy be returned to them if  you can no longer keep it. (The breeder should stand behind her pups for Life). Ask for a copy,  and take time to read the contract.

   Make sure the puppies are at least   8.5 weeks old  before being placed, with a FULL Vet exam and first shots at 8 weeks, (not before 7.5 weeks).    You should get a health booklet signed by the vet, with the vets contact -  with 4 way shots (no lepto on first shot).   Pup should also have been double  wormed.  (wormed at least twice, with a product, stronger than strongid).  The heart,  patella's,  testicles, ears,   skin, teeth, hernia's,  should all be checked & commented on, or the vet should write,   PUP appears healthy.   In is not acceptable, if the breeder doesn't do this $75 exam  BEFORE you take home the puppy.  Some breeders  want to save this cost, and make you responsible to take the pup to a vet within 60 hours.

All the puppies should have been examined by a Veterinarian, have a health certificate, and appropriate vaccinations and wormings prior to going home. The puppies should be free of internal and external parasites. Claims that these are common issues and that the breeder is not responsible for internal and external parasites is a Concern,  as she should have used a good reliable wormer.

-   Make sure puppies  come with activated puppy insurance. (two is even better to choose from

-     Does the breeder  consider  correct temperament in the placement,  of puppies.  This is VERY important  to match puppy to family

-     Does the breeder charge different prices depending upon the pet or show quality of the puppy.  (All pups have same parents)  Prices should be the ...    same,     but your commitment can vary.

A reputable breeder will provide a guarantee for their puppy; a minimum 1-2-year guarantee for any severe genetic disease. This guarantee  may require you to feed the dog a particular food with a protein level for toy dogs under 27%  . Any contract should have the puppy’s best interests in mind and protect it for life. A reputable breeder will have vast knowledge of their breed and will have been involved in the breed and with dogs in general for many years. A reputable breeder will only sell pet quality pups on non breeding registration with a spay/neuter contract on pets,  and Regulations if open like Co-ownership. .

Ask for age of Dam,   1.5 years is the youngest, any Dog,  should become a mother.    Some breeders will say 2 years old, but studies in this breed, show that 1.5 is a good age,  where as Large breeds need to be over 2. *( majority of ethical breeders  will say  approx  24 months is the age)

-    The breeder should place pups on a Non Breeding Contracts, + co-owned till neutering  or champion and health testing or forever,  as a breeder is  responsible for pups she produces for life. Does the breeder have a claus in her contract,  to take the puppy back,  no mater what,  if anything happens.  She should.

-    The breeder should be there to offer advice and support for as long as you have the dog, and should

      make you feel comfortable asking any question.  There are no silly questions.

- The breeder should have a guarantee of at least a year or two,  for genetic health issues.  The breeder should explain that they are breeding living animals,     and even though they do all testing,  and do all to prevent things,,   Things happen.     Genetic testing is not a guarantee that problems ,will not occur.  If an issue does present itself,  make sure there is a claus in the contract, that the breeder wants to be involved, and must recieve full reports as to what is to happen.

Most breeders will cover,   genetic/hereditary  problems,   but not acquired things like Cancer,  Accident or Trauma caused issues, or over excercise ..............................                                                                                                                          neglect,  over excercise, improper diet etc.

-  the Breeder should never seem defensive in answering questions.

_  does the breeder,  breed,  more than one breed. ?The answer should be One or two. It takes a tremendous amount of time and effort to learn what it takes to do a good job of breeding. It is very unusual for a breeder to be competent and up-to-date in more than one breed. There is only so much time in the day.  Generally  the Best breeders  focus Mainly on ONE breed,  and may have a little bit to do with one other. 


BELOW is a work in PROGRESS,   but some good Points to shar

A well bred puppy gives you so much more over a puppy mill or a backyard breeder pup. 

She will provide lifetime support for you and your puppy and not disapear after the purchase. You will have greatly bettered your odds that you are adding a correctly socialized healthy addition to your family who will not suffer from medical conditions that could have been prevented by responsible breeding.





Things to note,  and discuss if  A,B,C,D,E,F + G  are all up to your satisfaction.

OFFA Health testing:    There are things that occur in our breed.

eye issues.                  eyes should be offa certified annually, by a canine opthomologist.  (not the vet)

                                                    (WE have EXTREMELY  good eyes,  and have bred out problems)

Patella Luxation       patella's  of both parents,  should be up to date, recent certified online within 12 months

                                                    (Patella issues are a work in progress for all TOY breeders,   and in 20 years,  we have greatly reduced all ...                                                            Patella issues, to near none. 

Cardiac problems,    heart of both parents,  should be up to date,  recently certified online within 12 months

                                                    We have purchased dogs with acquired cardiac issues, and they were all removed from the breeding pool.

Dentition:                    Havanese are to have a nice scizzor bite,  with 6&6  fronts, and 2/3 sides. (This is OFFA Certifiable)

                                                        ALL of our breeding dogs,  have correct,  perfect  Dentition

Thyroid:                       EVERY breeder  should be testing Every line  for Thyroid with OFFA,  every breeding dog does not .  .  .  .  .  ..  .   . . .                                   need to be tested, with OFA< as long as every line is.  (The breeder should be able to show this)

LCP and Hips                Few Havanese get hip displasia, they are more prone to LCP,   The screening xray for LCP is the same . . . .                                               xray as for Hips,  so both screenings should be done,  and certified on breeding males.  Many do their . . . .  ...  ..                                      females as well at the vets,  but do not like to put them under anasthetic for the OFFA Xrays.   The  ............                                        breeder should  have the xrays in her files, to show,  hip xrays on breeding females, if not OFFA ............                                        certified. (Some breeders  do the hips with Penn Hips).    As long as the breeder is doing xrays

                                                  Offa Hips, is an American testing facility,  Some breeders choose to test with Vets in Canada.

All above  should be seen on the OFFA  sites

Liver issues               We removed the lines that were carriers of liver disease.  some breeders choose to test each puppy,  ...                                                 that leaves thier kennel for liver levels.  Unfortunately, these levels are not accurate according to .....                                               our vets, until a pup is over 12 weeks old, and on solid foods for 6+ weeks.

Ears  Testing                If we had ear testing where we live,  I would do the testing,  just because it is offered, but in 20 ....                                                years  of breeding this breed,  we have never had a deaf dog.

SA                                               SA  was removed from our breeding program,  this is a skin disease that NO dog or owner wants.


Short Hair Gene:                        Yup, we had a couple short hair show up in our lines,   Not a health concern, 

                                                     but they are not hyp-allergenic  and they shed,  these lines were removed from our breeding pool.                                                                                          A breeder can tell if a pup is  short hair version,  at 6 weeks of age.

Chrondodisplasia                        you do not want a pup,   that is structurally put together wrong,  with Bowed front legs, and

...                                                    cow   hocked rear legs.  One way to ensure you are getting the best structure is to ask ask                                                     the  breeder for soaped down photo's of your pup at 8 weeks,  Front, Rear,  Topline




topics below,   we are working on   (this site is not final or proof'd yet).   as it is open to others to help work on.

The responsible breeder is involved with welfare of the breed or of dogs generally. Not everyone can be involved directly, but all breeders can and should contribute to taking care of the breed.

  • In what way is the breeder involved with rescue? Name the rescue organization or shelter that the breeder works with.

    • If the breeder is not coordinating with a rescue organization or organization then describe how the breeder

      1. discovers potential rescue dogs and

      2. makes sure they are placed appropriately.

  • A responsible breeder should be involved with the breed in other ways in order to build a resource base of information and knowledge. These would be activities that would tend to help the breeder make and maintain contacts with other people in the breed. They will also be ways in which the breeder contributes to the health and welfare of the breed.

    • Is the breeder involved with the CKC?,  Does she attend, National Specialties, and Seminars.

    •  Does the breeder have a code of ethics?

    • What activities does the breeder participate in? For example, obedience, conformation, agility, . . (there are lots more)

    • Does the breeder introduce her puppy buyers to each other and hold puppy picnics.  

    • Does the breeder support any health registry by contributing information on dogs in the pedigree even if those dogs are not going to be bred.

    • Does the breeder work  with a Group of Breeders, to improve the breed and share knowlege.

    • Will the buyer be required to spay or neuter the puppy?

    • At what age will this requirement be enforced?

    • What incentive is being given to encourage compliance? (Deposit Return ?)

    • What is the potential consequence if the requirement is not met?

    • The responsible breeder takes steps to protect the dog from becoming a shelter statistic

    • Does the contract require return of the dog or an opportunity to approve placement if the buyer cannot or will not keep the dog? Does this apply no matter how old the dog is?

    • That does not mean the breeder must refund the money. The purpose of the provision is the protection of the dog. The contract should include fair provisions accounting for whether the breeder gets any value by accepting the dog back. The buyer needs to understand that in most cases accepting the dog back is a burden taken on for the benefit of the dog and is not a benefit to the breeder. The breeder, however, needs to reassure the buyer that return to the breeder is not unfairly beneficial to the breeder. The goal is to encourage return instead of sale to an unsuitable home or surrender to a shelter or rescue.

    • Does the breeder care whether the person buying the dog is going to be a good match?

    • Does the breeder interview interested people to learn if they understand what it takes to successfully raise and train the breed? Does the breeder try to learn if the potential buyer has experience in the breed or has taken steps to become educated?

    • Is the breeder open to discussing the breed at shows and competitions?

    • How does the breeder gauge the seriousness of interest? Does the breeder notice whether the buyer has asked important questions regarding contract provisions, health testing, breed standards, temperament, appropriate levels of exercise, and similar evidence of taking the responsibility seriously?

    • Does the breeder volunteer information on genetic health problems, as every line has them.

    • It isn't possible to produce dogs entirely free of genetic problems. So if a breeder tries to say that there are no problems they are either lying or extremely ignorant. What you want is a breeder that is honest about what potential problems exist, and who tries to reduce the risk of problems, especially the serious ones. There are some breeds that have a very low rate of problems. There are none that have no problems at all.  Two breeders could be breeding for 20 years,   one just BREEDS and sells, the other selectively breeds and removes issues.  Which puppy would you want.

    • Does the breeder discuss the breeding potential for the dog?

    • What  resources does the breeder recommend for those new to the breed or to answer basic questions on puppy raising?

    • Can the breeder provide the name of support in the event of special problems and needs?

    • Were the puppies raised in the house as members of the family? Potty trained, or left in a box.

    • What steps are being taken to properly socialize each individual puppy? (Socializing is not playing, socializing is becoming familiar and comfortable with - so the puppy should have been introduced to children, other animals, a variety of people, different scents and sounds)

    • Some pups that are raised in homes, with too Much going on, will have issues,    remember Socializing is NOT playing.

    • Over stimulation  from  Busy Families can be harmful,  as with pups with Toddlers and no supervision.   Pups  can learn to dislike chkilfen,

    • How old will the puppies be when they are placed in their new homes? Responsible breeders will not place puppies younger than 8 weeks old. This is important for the best social and mental development of the puppy. Singletons (only puppies) and those removed from the litter early miss out on critical lessons in how to be a dog. This can be overcome to some extent by finding other playmates appropriately close in age AND an adult who can take the place of a skilled bitch teaching social manners.  Some Dams,   are not interested in their pups after  5,6,7, weeks,  it i important that the breeder introduces  an auht.   And older mother figure. maternal one.

    • How often will the puppy need to go outside at that point, and what is the effect on future house training if the puppy cannot get outside that often? The younger the puppy the more often it has to go out. If the person taking care of the pup cannot get it out as often as it needs to go then house training can be made much more difficult. At eight weeks of age a puppy can wait about 2 hours before it needs to go out. It will need to go out more frequently when it is active, eating or drinking.

    • How is the temperament of the puppy evaluated?

    • How are the family and puppy matched? Can the buyer just pick any puppy? Or will the breeder interview the buyer and try to make the match?

    • Takes steps to ensure that the dogs being produced are an improvement on health, temperament and qualities as a companion.

    • Remember, it isn't possible to produce the perfect dog. What a breeder can do is become educated on what genetic diseases are, how they are expressed (become obvious instead of hidden), how serious they are in terms of risks to quality of life, and how to balance the risks so the dogs have the best chance at a good quality of life. So if you are looking at the qualities of a breeder what you want to know is how well educated the breeder has become on these issues, and whether the breeder makes good use of that education.

    • If a breeder can only tell you that a vet checked the dog and found it healthy then they do not have the information they need to breed healthy dogs. Even in breeds with a very low rate of problems the educated breeder knows enough to know the most common problems in *other* breeds and how those problems are discovered. Again, look at the source of information. Sorry, but veterinarians *aren't* the best source of learning what genetic problems affect what breeds. They are generally more concerned with the general dog population, and what problems are actually affecting the life of the dog before them. They leave it to breeders to detect and avoid the potential for problems in future dogs.

    • But,  the opinions of a breeders vet are important.  Call the vet to be sure,  he respects the breeder and her  practices

    • What is the level of seriousness of those diseases? Which are correctable or treatable? Which affect the quality of life for the dog, or are a burden on the owner?

    • What books, seminars or classes were used to learn about basic genetics, breed specific problems, and steps that can be used to reduce the risk of those problems?

    • What evidence can the breeder show you of steps taken for the good genetic health of this particular litter? Certificates? Paperwork?

    • Are the great-grandparents still alive? If any are not, what did they die of? And the progeny of the great-grandparents? What is the health of other dogs in the line?  Does the breeder breed for longivity. ?

    • Can the breeder provide you with health clearance information of at least some other dogs in the line, not just the parents?
      For the most part a breeder should know the health and fitness of the immediate family members. Making good breeding decisions requires knowing the health of as much of the immediate family as possible. The more information the breeder has on other dogs in the pedigree the more confident you can be that the breeder has been making good decisions.

    • Does the health guarantee offered reflect confidence in the genetic health of the puppies? A one year guarantee is a Must in this breed min.

    • Does the breeder possess a physical copy of the breed standard?

    • Are these puppies expected to conform to breed standard? If they do not conform to breed standard then in what way do they deviate from breed standard? If there is deviation why did that occur? Note, this is not necessarily a bad thing just something both breeder and buyer should be clear on. Be aware that deviation from standard tends to represent extremes - the very worst breeders, and some of the very best. The worst situation is a breeder who either doesn't know, or doesn't care if there is a deviation (i.e. is thoughtless about it)

    • REMEMBER if you are buying a Show Potential pup,  the breeder must PROVE  the pup is show potential,   not just ask for more $$

    • What has the breeder produced already? If the breeder has produced puppies in the past has the breeder kept in touch? Is the breeder concerned with their welfare? Has the breeder recorded their health and temperament as they mature and age?

    • What is the breeder doing to follow up on what they have produced? Trying to do a good job of producing healthy puppies of appropriate temperament becomes a futile exercise if the breeder does nothing to find out whether those attempts have been successuful.

    • Evaluating the buyer to determine a good match for the breed is important as is making sure there are competent buyers available. What steps has the breeder taken to locate potential buyers before the mating?

    • A breeder who cares for dogs does their very best to make sure that the puppy goes to a home that has both the willingness and the ability to provide what the puppy needs to grow up into a happy, healthy wonderful pet. That means the breeder is going to need some information from you. Be prepared to provide the answers and please don't feel insulted. It may not feel like it but they aren't asking questions to make you feel bad. They are just doing the best for their puppies. If you aren't comfortable with the breeder, or how they deal with you, then move on to another. Just understand that their goal is to do the best they can for the puppy, and the breeder is human and may have a hard time coming up with the right tone. Also don't feel that just because you made a mistake or had a bad experience that no breeder will ever consider you "worthy" of a puppy. It is true that some just won't take a chance. Most, however, just want to know what has changed. What will prevent the same kind of problem from happening again.

    • A breeder will want to know about your experience with dogs. Your experience can range from never having shared a home with a dog, to growing up with a dog, to having complete responsibility for a dog. The breed (or breeds) will be important, as will the age you got the dog, how long you had it, and your level of responsibility in caring for it (that is did you just live in the same household, or were you the primary caretaker). If you taught the dog anything more than basic good manner that is a big plus.

    • A common theme is to get a dog "for the kids". Any responsible breeder will instantly focus in on that reason. A dog is not an educational tool. There is certainly much value and learning in pet ownership but the desire and motivation to have a dog must start with the parties responsible for the dog - the parents. If keeping the dog is dependent upon the interest and involvement of the children a responsible breeder will not place the dog in that family


    • OK, if you have gone through all the above,  let me take a moment to remind you. You won't find a breeder that does all of the above. The purpose of the list is to help you get a feel for what responsible breeding is all about. It is to help you understand the reasons for requirements or provisions that might otherwise seem bizarre or overbearing. It is also to help you get enough knowledge to distinguish the good talker from the good doer. A great talker has reasons for everything, but if you know what to ask their story doesn't hold together. Don't be afraid to ask questions. The better the breeder the happier they will be that you care enough to not just swallow things whole. On the other hand don't be offensive about it. You will want to build a relationship of trust because if you have found a truly caring breeder you have found gold.

    • This checklist is only a guide, an ideal if you will. Just because something is missing does not mean a person is not an ethical breeder. It is up to you to decide what is important. This checklist is also not complete. No one can do everything. It is the overall picture that is important.

    • Don't have a heart attack at the length of this checklist.           It isn't as though you need to spend two hours on the phone grilling the person with these questions. Use the questions to help you explore what it is that makes one breeder better than another. You will find that a lot of the answers will become obvious to you as you become more familiar with reading advertisements, and talking dogs with people.

    • I understand that some people want or need a well bred dog  and others want to support rescue


    • . I have no problem with that. My point is that if you are going to support the breeding of dogs, perhaps the only breeder that deserves your support is the one that knows how to produce something obviously better than a shelter dog. If you want something better than a shelter dog you will need to do your homework. All the dogs in the shelter came from breeders. What kind of breeders did they come from? Virtually all came from people who didn't know, or didn't care, to learn how to do the best for dogs.

    • Sept 2016

    • a little Blurb  sent in from one of our CoBreeders  about Commercial Breeding.

    • We really hope with the new regulations coming into Canada, that they do not approve,  Commercial and regulated breeding over home raised pups. We do need some regulations though,   with manidtory testing, permits, breeder education,   etc.

    • There are many  discussions  surrounding the issue of "commercial breeders".  Large breeders,  with Many caged dogs and puppies,   producing multiple litters at a time.

    • instead of working to support your breed, you ask it to support you. There are many good reasons for breeding purebred dogs. Paying the mortgage isn't one of them.

    • One Debate is that "if breeders don't produce puppies to satisfy the market demand, people will go to pet stores or puppy mills."

    • This is Where a Good Breeder will NOT Let them, but steer them to other breeders that may have pups.   Again, working in a group works.  An experienced Established breeder knows who is having puppies.


    • . My breeding program , pups born at my house,    I could NEVER meet the demand for pups requested.    But I refer my callers to others that I would personally purchase a puppy from,  that do All and above for the breed.,   and sometimes clients need to wait a few months.  People can't always get what they  want and I'll will NOT  sacrifice my breed for consumer demand. Raising Multiple litters in a Barn.  

    • Our  general rule is  2 litters,   In the kitchen...training, hands on and socialized.


    • As a Reputable, responsible and  serious breeder, I spend a lot of time with my own dogs and  clients.  WE have 4 havanese picnics a year,  so I can see how our dogs are doing,   I'm busy with our havanese group,  mentoring newbies,  showing, grooming and life in general. My  time away from  Family,  Friends, and the dogs, is generally filled with emails,  messenger,   phone calls and correspondence with my clients, peers and newcomers that I mentor. We also help people in our area,  that have purchased pups elsewhere, and are getting no support, and we have done several rescues of dogs not from our breedings.

These pedigrees do not exist,  they are made up,  to show,  the difference in look, 

<<<   0%   COI on left,     no inbreeding,  verses

>>>   25% COI on right,  Inbred look brother to sister

Calling a breeders vet is one of MOST important, if not Thee most important step

Good Breeder

Responsible, Reliable, Reputable PLUS Ethical Breeder

When puppy shopping, Please do your homework


Reputable + Ethical Breeder, whom is also  Responsible, Experienced and reliable.

The definition of reputable is: respected, trusted and having a good reputation. This is where, you should always contact a breeders Vet and ask about her reputation, which will tell you a lot about her ethics.  Follow the homework chart A.B.C to find out if she is responsible and experienced.

 You want a breeder that is Responsible,  Reputable, Experienced and above all... ETHICAL and this makes her reliable.                                                  (Ethics is becoming harder and harder to find in all walks of life)

Breeding Ethics go past the good breeding practices of a breeder.  Breeding Ethics also have to do with how a breeder deals with her own dogs, Mentors, Vets,  Puppy buyers, and other breeders.  A good breeder works in a group, and has an exceptional working relationship with her Vets and all in the office.                                                                                         


A good ethical breeder chooses to act in a manner that is right and good, both during and after the sale of a puppy.

The ethical breeder looks after her clients needs and her puppies needs.   Her ethical breeding of sound dogs who are bred for

 healthy, long lives and selectively placed in the correct homes shows her thoughtfulness, caring and Love for her breed  A good breeder has a Passion for her breeds future.

YOU as the buyer play a part in selecting an Ethical breeder, by doing your homework,  and Insisting to ONLY purchase from GOOD ethical breeders  to help eliminate puppy mills.                   

Do Not purchase a pup off the internet without  LOTS of homework (see our list).                      

Purchasing a puppy from a member of a breed club does NOT make them ethical or responsible.  Often these less ethical breeders  hide under the skirts of a club,  (so,  do your homework regardless of what titles your breeder or her dogs have,  or clubs she may belong to)

We can show you,  but we choose not to,  that members of Breed clubs are the largest breaker of rules and ethics,  (within our group,  we promote each other, and promote the good breeders, and do not worry about pointing out the breeders that we would not purchase from),  In order to be a recommended/referred/ethical breeder,  you must be breeding in a way,  that any one of us, would personally purchase a puppy from you.  All of our breeders  worry and tend to what they are doing, and do it the best possible way they can,  before worrying about what other breeders are not doing.  

Good  Breeders Show their dogs  to Confirm they are bred to the standard and are not kennel blind.  Showing also proves that a breeders  breeding dogs are sound and of good temperament. A breeder with outstanding Structure, conformation and Sound dogs will have multiple wins on multiple dogs,   (not just one dog), but consistency of wins over the years.     

 It is good if a breeder has done some consistent top winning in competitions, it shows that she is proud of what she has bred,  and has sound dogs with good temperaments.


​A good  breeder  of toy companion breeds raises pups In her living area,  in her home,  kitchen,  NOT in a garage, barn, basement.  These are companion pups and need early social stimulation, and ongoing socializing before being homed at 9 weeks. They need to be pre crate trained to avoid separation anxiety, and should have their potty manners progressing well, and NOT be raised in a paper lined pen, where they are forced to live and potty in the same box.

A responsible breeder generally does Not have what you want,  readily available,   you should have to go on a waitlist for a WELL bred havanese,  as Good breeders think ahead,  and take deposits BEFORE they breed.  Also  we found that the breeders to avoid, are those that make their living through breeding dogs, and multiple breeds. The corners that they cut on breeding,  and the lower price you pay,  may greatly add to your future Vet costs.

Find a breeder that is not only  Reputable and Ethical,  but Experienced and Responsible  all these = a  Good Reliable Breeder.

 Be careful of the smaller kennels,  some are good if they have a good mentor and work in a group and you can find out about their lines. When they have very few litters, and work alone,  it takes them years to find out if they have genetic issues, as the lines are not being used. Often the smaller private breeders inbreed into their own kennels and do not have the variety of known good bloodlines. They do not have as sound of dogs,  with good structure and temperaments,  so they do not show much as they do not place well by the judges.   In breeding you really need a breeder that is experienced in the breed, and the health issues in the breed.  If  a Breede r says they have never had a health issue,,,, walk away.

There is no such thing as a perfect being,   human or dog. 

Most importantly, support the kennels that truly care about each and every puppy they produce, from planning to death. A good breeder will be responsible for every pup they place for life in the event that the new owners cannot care for the dog.      

PUPPY buyers  need to do their due diligence and they need to walk away from Breeders who do not live up to the standard of an Ethical/Responsible GOOD  Breeders.       


By doing their homework, and choosing the all around  good experienced breeder.

I need to do more on Checking that your breeder really does exist.

I got this email from a family.

"It is becoming a sad world that we live in. This past week as we have been researching Havanese breeders we identified a web scam where an individual was pretending to be a breeder. He had a great website and everything appear very legitimate. He was very quick and forth coming with information and we where ready to make a commitment. Until, I started do some more research prior to making payment. Long story short, after requesting some specific information we never heard from him again and the items I discovered made it very clear that it was a scam and there was no puppy for sale.''

2015 Copywrite:  MistyTrails Havanese Reg'd.


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