Frequently Asked Questions
Why do you keep your puppies until they're 10 weeks old instead of 8 weeks?
We put an immense amount of time into enriching our puppies, including early socialization, potty training, and basic manners. Much of what we accomplish happens between 8 & 10 weeks. While we know that our puppy parents will do an incredible job in these areas, we promise to make efficient use of these two weeks, and that you will take home a happier puppy as a result!
Our puppies receive their first 5-way vaccine between 8 & 9 weeks, and mild reactions are not uncommon. We want to keep our puppies in our care for at least a week following their first vaccine to ensure that they handle everything okay, as the time between the first & last puppy shots are their most vulnerable.
While puppies are inherently curious about everything, they typically go through a fear period around 9 weeks of age, during which a scary experience with something new could create a lasting impact. (For example, being dropped by a toddler or slapped by the family cat.) While we spend the puppies’ entire time with us creating new, enriching opportunities for them, we take precautions not to introduce anything “too scary” during a fear period. We think it’s a good idea to send puppies home (the happiest but possibly scariest day of their life) once they’re past that short stage.
All puppies MUST learn bite inhibition by biting. It’s that simple. Since most people tell their puppies not to bite, we give them a little more time to chew on each other and our adult pack members…and us! With sharp teeth and LOTS of biting, puppies learn that their jaws can hurt – before their jaws have the strength to do so. They learn to inhibit their bites with their own kind, and with humans, so that if something happens to create a reflex (tail closed in a door, for example) and they snap, they will naturally do zero damage. Yes – puppies need to stop biting at some point. But we need to inhibit force before frequency…and that’s what they learn to do with our pack.
Can I visit to meet my puppy and his/her momma?
Yes! We welcome and encourage visitors! Not only do we want YOU to meet your puppy, this is an important part of our socialization process for ALL of our puppies. Even if you’re not sure about whether you’ll be getting a puppy from us, we’d love to have you visit and help to socialize our puppies for us! (We have found that, with precautions and in the safety of our home, the benefits of early socialization outweigh the risks of exposure – especially while they are under the protection of momma’s immunity. Please let us know if you have concerns!)
Your prices are higher than other breeders I've spoken to. Why do you charge so much?
While we have the veterinary, nutrition, and supply costs of any reputable breeder, we go beyond whelping and raising puppies to the age that they can go home with you.
We focus on early, frequent socialization, as well as house training and enrichment activities from an early age. Our puppies begin learning basic manners, for both the human world and the doggy community, before they leave our home. The extra development that we put into each puppy is unique and effective.
In short we’ve structured the first 10 weeks of your puppy’s life in a way that should make the next 10+ years happier for you both!
We’re proud of the education we’ve gotten from experts, and the energy we put into raising amazing dogs. See How Our Pups Are Different for more details!
I'm not local. Can my puppy be driven or flown to meet me?
We understand that not everyone can take time off and travel across the country when it’s time for their baby to go home! For an additional fee, we can arrange safe and comfortable transportation for your puppy right to your door.
Whether you want to meet in the middle, or have us drive to you, we can generally work out an arrangement that suits both parties! If you’ll be driving part of the distance, we can also share ideas for minimizing car sickness and keeping potty breaks safe.
Most breeders have a particular Puppy Nanny with whom they work. Puppy Nannies fly with your puppy in the cabin with them, keeping your puppy calm, comfortable, and filled with treats during the flight. If there is a layover, the Puppy Nanny finds a safe, secluded area for a potty break, and spends the time isolated from touchy-feely crowds. Upon arrival at your local airport, the Puppy Nanny turns your puppy over to your care.
We serve as our own Puppy Nanny, hand carrying our puppies on the flight(s) and then going so far as to escort him or her to your home upon landing. You are responsible for travel costs and a small fee for our time, but because our purpose is not to make money on puppy delivery, we are able to do this less expensively than third party Puppy Nannies. (The more flexible your timing, the better pricing we can get.) The goal is to ensure the safety and comfort of our/your puppy, and to provide a personal service to you. Likewise, we want to meet every one of our puppy parents in person! We do not ship our puppies in cargo.
Why is your Holding Fee non-refundable?
Our top priority is the appropriate and timely placement of our puppies. When we hold a puppy for a buyer, we are agreeing not to place that puppy with another family. We frequently turn down good potential homes because a puppy is already spoken for. If the buyer changes his/her mind and decides not to adopt the puppy, we are left with the challenging task of finding another amazing home, often when the puppy is several weeks older. This often comes with additional advertising and vet costs, as we continue to raise and train the puppy until he/she is adopted. The Holding Fee is the first step in a puppy parent’s promise to care for his/her puppy for life.
How can I pay my deposit/balance?
We prefer Zelle, because it’s fast (less than 5 minutes), secure (no account info), and you have a record of the transaction. It’s especially great for deposits, since we only hold a puppy once the deposit has been received. We also accept Venmo, cash, check (for deposit only), and cashier’s check.