Does anyone have any experience, comments, endorsements, etc. on "Thistleberry English Labs" a breeder in Lebanon, PA?
I spoke to the owner this afternoon on the telephone, and plan to visit his operation on Monday.
I'm looking for some "heads up" info [positive or negative] before I make the trip on Monday.
Thanks in advance,
I will answer before looking for a website to just give ou question to ask:
- do BOTH parents have ALL their clearances (hips, elbows, eye, heart, eic, cmn). these are special tests NOT done at wellness checks. If they talk about getting the "all clear from the vet" it means no they do not
- do they do anything active with both parents (not just dad), to prove them. Such as conformation or hunt trials. Or at least hunt with them. Or are the dogs just breeding dogs that are "great labs".
- when are puppies released to their new family (what age). it is illegal and not good for puppies to be taken from litter before 8 weeks
Also see if they ask YOU any questions beyond how you will pay. They should be asking you about your lifestyle and routine to ensure a lab is right for you and picking the right puppy.
If they talk about rare colours (white lab, silver lab, etc.) walk away.
me again. i have looked at their page and they don't seem to do anything with the parents (no conformation) so that's not good. they give random clearances which makes me wonder if they do them all on all dogs. they talk about hips but not elbows which are important.
So lots of questions to ask. PLease ask before you go see puppies and become unable to say no. Once you see puppies most people are goners and will go with their heart and not their head.
Honestly for that price you really could find a great breeder that does ALL clearances and proves their dogs. that is a high price point for pet bred dogs.
Thanks for the excellent input.
To respond to the points your raised:
- This breeder releases the pups after 8 weeks;
- The health clearances seemed rather limited to me also;
- Very Important point - I don't think they do anything with the parents, just raise puppies. I would be far more comfortable with the breeder if he were heavily into showing or field work.
I think I'll still go to his place and meet him this Monday [it's only 1 1/2 hours drive]. At that time I'll see if he can be more specific re. health clearances, activities, etc.
Thanks again for your responses.
Pet breeder, not worth it in my opinion.
Thanks for the input.
I had a pleasant visit at Thistleberry.
But without elaboration, IMO the input given [above] by the forum members seems to be on target - based on my observations on site.
I'll be looking elsewhere.