Mixed Breed vs. Purebred, and Rescue vs. Purchase
an act or instance of taking something to be true or adopting a particular attitude toward something, especially at the start of a chain of argument or action.
DON’T HATE ME BECAUSE I’M BEAUTIFUL!!!
The handsome poodle in this photo is, in fact, purebred and yes, he is groomed to perfection. A show dog one might think. Kramer – the purebred poodle is a stunning, friendly dog albeit timid at times. He was going to be a breeding dog. The breeder decided that due to his disposition this was not to be his future, and she found a good home for him. Kramer’s mama is a groomer and his role as a model for her incredible talent suits him perfectly. Kramer greets Henry and Reese when they arrive at the salon for their appointments and the opportunity to socialize is great for both Kramer and Reese, who is also very timid.
My point is this; looking at Kramer, you might not, at first glance think he is a ‘rescue.’ In my experience and through much research and interaction with dog owners over the years, I have witnessed a great divide and often prejudice. Breeders and owners of purebred dogs versus rescue parents, parents of Heinz 57’s and even some rescue workers.
Let’s face it there is something that draws us to our companions whether they are a mix from a rescue organization or a purebred from a rescue organization or a breeder. Some of us have a ‘type.’ Although I care about the wellbeing of all animals, I go gaga for curly, or wavy coated dogs that are small to medium in size as well as the temperament of the dog. Others are drawn to the temperament alone – often a trait of the dog’s breed, or the combination of breeds.
To some, going through a reputable breeder means having a history of their dog’s health for, in some cases, several generations. It also means the opportunity to train a dog from puppyhood, hopefully ruling out behavior issues and establishing good manners. Some people rely on the support and guidance from the breeder regarding their new family member.
This doesn’t mean there won’t be issues; no one can predict a traumatic event that may alter behavior. Nor can they rule out the possibility of cancer or other first-time health concern regardless of lineage. I would say there is no guarantee, and for the dogs, that may be true. For the people who purchase from a breeder, it is often agreed that if there is an issue with the dog, the breeder will provide a ‘replacement’ or refund. The purchasers may return the dog to the breeder.
My opinion: when people make a commitment to become a pet owner, they should do so with the mindset they will care for their companion no matter what cards they are dealt. Henry and Reese both had health issues when we rescued them. Reese was older and required rehabilitation for the trauma of life after a puppy mill. With the exception of a few additional upsets along the way, we knew from the beginning what we were signing up for.
Purebred vs. Rescue, Purebred vs. mixed breeds. In the words of Rudyard Kipling, “never the twain shall meet.” That, however, is not the case. My husband has always admired the Portuguese Water Dog breed and would love to have one join our pack. I admit, years ago, I ‘assumed’ the only way to acquire one of these purebred dogs was from a breeder. I informed my husband that we would never have a PWD, our pack would consist of rescues only. I was ignorant to presume Portuguese Water Dogs or other purebred dogs may never find themselves in the situation of needing to be rehomed.
Some rescue organizations, although affiliated with a specific breed, will often provide care and work to find loving homes for mixes of the breeds they represent as well as purebred dogs. Boston Terrier Rescue Canada, Golden Rescue, and Standard Poodles In Need are wonderful examples of such organizations.
From Bernice McNutt, President of Standard Poodles In Need Rescue, and Rehome:
‘Purchasing from a great breeder isn’t a bad thing at all! Lack of research and impatience is definitely an issue. It allows the disreputable breeders to continue producing puppies purely for profit.
We’ve seen the bumper stickers ‘Golden’s Rule’ or ‘Don’t shop, adopt! Save a life.’
When you see a purebred dog, don’t be too quick to judge. The fact that their owner selected a purebred dog is not the reason a shelter dog is put to sleep. Also, when you see a mixed breed or special needs dog, don’t dismiss them as being of lesser quality. Each dog is unique, every one is special!
My opinion – again;
Overpopulation, the reason shelters and rescue organizations are inundated with pets, is mostly due to disreputable breeders and irresponsible pet owners. I say ‘mostly’ because unfortunately things do happen, and even some of the most loved and well cared for companions find themselves at the door of a shelter. PLEASE write your wills and plan for the unknown. Sorry, I digress.
Sierra, a purebred Duck Tolling Retriever is a show dog, competing in agility trials. Sierra also spends a great deal of her time in the hospital – for people, as a therapy dog. Also, Sierra is a member of the St. John Ambulance Paws 4 Stories program. This program enhances children’s reading skills. Like hundreds of owners of purebred dogs (from reputable breeders), Sierra’s mom contributes generously and supports various rescue organizations and therapy programs.
Instead of judging the quality of the dog or how it was acquired, we should rally together to abolish disreputable breeders. This includes backyard breeders and puppy mills. We should focus our efforts on cruelty and inhumane treatment of all animals, supporting diligence, protection and enforcing harsh penalties for neglect and abuse. My disapproval does not lie with the owner of a purebred dog for making that choice. My disapproval is with a breeder who does not provide care and adequate accommodation for his dogs, or the owner or carer who leaves dogs in vehicles on a hot day.
I also disapprove of organizations (or, brokers and millers posing as a rescue), regardless of a breed; that will take your cash and very few details by way of an application. To me, that is highly suspicious not to mention irresponsible. Most reputable rescue organizations want a full application, including references, ensuring the dogs entrusted to them will be well cared for and safe.
Rescue sites, shelters and rescue organizations are flooded with purebred companions in need of loving homes. If you admire a certain breed and are open to providing a loving, forever home to an animal in need, please consider adoption. If you want to purchase a purebred dog from a breeder, please ensure they are reputable. If you have suspicions about a breeder, please report these to the authorities. And regardless of where an animal companion comes from, please be vigilant and consider their welfare when out in the community. I have animal control and my local police on speed dial!
‘ENVY’ was to be June’s subject, however, it seems appropriate to share this post today. Across the Country, we are celebrating Canada Day. Canada is a diverse country; it’s people made up of many nationalities and beliefs. Our choice, of breed or background of companion equally varied. ‘Happy Canada Day!’
Thank you, Candice of Groomingdales, Pet Valu – Sutton, Ontario, and the very handsome Kramer for participating in this photo shoot.
Thank you again to Gillian Woods for collaborating with me on The Awareness Project.