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My Thoughts on Retirement Homes for Dogs...

Breeders placing dogs that have retired from breeding into retirement/pet homes is a controversial topic, and understandably so! Like so many things in this life and in this dog world, I do not think this topic is that black and white. I have seen dogs retired and placed into pet homes in a manner I understand, and I have seen it done in a very ugly and sad manner.

I spay and pet home some of my retired dogs, and here is why. First of all, if I didn't, my breeding program would cease to exist. If I kept every dog I retired or decided not use in my program for one reason or another, I would have no room left to continue my program and continue keeping puppies off of litters in the hopes of improving health testing scores and improving the confirmation of the dogs I am breeding. Now, there is another way around this that is quite common. I could set up kennels or pens, and house many dogs in them rather than keeping all or most of them as house dogs living inside with the family. Just to be clear, I do not think there is anything wrong with a proper kennel setup, it is a great way to keep dogs safe, it is just not the way I am currently running my program. Back to my point, if I kept every dog I would quickly become full of dogs and some would inevitably have to live in kennels. We all only have so many hours in a day, so all of these dogs would not be getting near as much attention, love, training, one on one, etc. as they would be with fewer dogs. Sometimes dogs decide not to like a certain other dog and now they have to crate and rotate. More dogs increases this likelihood as well.

Placing retired dogs in pet homes eliminates these issues. The dog now joins a wonderful and well matched family and gets to be the center of their world. They are not competing for attention in a house full of dogs and they are not living in a kennel, they are a beloved family member, just as they should be. I understand that not everyone does it this way and that there are awful humans out there that call themselves breeders and profit off a dog until they no longer can and then dump it. Absolutely this is horrid and heartbreaking and I am certainly not defending such behavior. When I speak on placing a dog into a retirement home it does not mean abandoning them, putting them into a shelter, or giving them away to the first person who says they'll take them. It means keeping the dog until the right home comes along for their specific needs. It means waiting for the home that is going to love and care for the dog and provide it with a wonderful life . Some retired dogs may never leave because it's not in their best interest, some may not find their perfectly matched family, those dogs will stay here forever and that is ok too. It is a difficult decision to make and I would never rehome a dog or a puppy unless I felt confident is was in their best interest and in the right home. I know not everyone is going to share my opinion on this, and that is ok, it is simply my own current perspective that I wished to share for anyone who may be interested.

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