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Old 07-09-2011, 01:01 AM
Sit Stay's Avatar
Sit Stay Sit Stay is offline
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Join Date: Oct 2010
Location: Ontario
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I'm going to be super picky about my next puppy because I don't have a reason not to be and I'm in no rush - if he doesn't meet everything on my list, no biggie, I'll wait for the next litter.

I didn't have full say on picking a puppy from Quinn's litter - all the future puppy owners just got updates on the litter as a whole and then we spoke to the breeder when we came to visit the puppies at 6 weeks old. My breeder really worked with me as I had been torn between two puppies for pretty much the whole time, but she would have final say and said that while it was my decision (both pups were very similar and would work well in either home), she did recommend Quinn. Quinn was the bolder and braver of the two pups and she is still this way and it's probably my #1 favorite thing about her. I remember her saying Quinn was "always up for adventure" as early as the 3 or 4 week update. She was always the least spooked and first to investigate new items and when she first took them off property to her daughter's school, she said all the other puppies froze when they saw the kids coming except for Quinn. She said Quinn ran out to meet them and thought they were there just to see her, LOL. I LOVE her stable temperament and how quickly she recovers and that's something that will be priority #1 in my next puppy as well. I'm always amazed at how unphased Quinn is by spooky stuff (elevators, trains, wheelchairs, umbrellas, tunnels). Even if she does get spooked, like she backed into my turned off hair straightener the other day and didn't realize until it fell on her, she just tucks her butt, turns right around to see what attacked her and that's that.

Another thing that's important with my next puppy is how he interacts with other dogs. Quinn is quite bossy and gets along well with dogs who are kind of "whatever" and easygoing, so ideally I'd like a pup that has good social skills with adult dogs and is pretty easygoing while interacting. Her bff is an ultra submissive Swissy who literally gets along with everyone he meets - I don't think I'll find an ES as chill as he is but something leaning towards that personality would be awesome.

As far as how they interact with me, that's tough to say when you aren't actually in the moment. There's all these little things that can fit together or not so much. When we first went to look at the litter I was actually pretty set on the not-Quinn puppy and spent my whole time trying to get her attention and play with her hoping that something would just click. The whole time I was following her, Quinn was following me though. Right off the bat Quinn was much more interested in interacting with us which I really should have listened to - that's another thing that she's held on to and another thing I really value about her. She is always aware of where I am and I've never had a puppy so watchful. Ever since she was 8 weeks old she'd look me in the eye and not look away.

I'm also going to wait for a dog that shows some drive and seriousness. I think I've posted this here before but I was in love with the build and appearance of a dog whose breeder I know online. Lookwise he is my perfect male ES. Saw a video of him a few months later and OMG - he is so doofy. I like a dog that is intense and serious while they're working and he was bouncing and loping all over the place and had no idea where he was going. At first I gave him the benefit of the doubt and thought it was her training but watching more videos, her other dogs aren't like that. Aesthetically he might be what I'm looking for but temperament, while I'm sure he's a super nice dog, he is not what I'm looking for.

I'm not sure why this has turned out so long because it's late here and I'm actually really tired, LOL. Anyways - Quinn's stable temperament, focus and drive are what I love about her and what I'm also going to be looking for in my next puppy (along with a color I like and a small size). I'd never gotten a puppy from a breeder that actually decided for you before I got Quinn but I have total trust in Quinn's breeder now and if my next pup is to come from her, I'd have no problem telling her what I want and letting her pick the puppy for me. I'd also trust her to tell me she didn't have what I was looking for if that was the case. She raises her puppies absolutely amazing and can tell so much about them even at 5ish weeks old. When her current litter was that young she said she was pretty sure she knew which female she was keeping and sure enough, she's the one that stayed with them. I also have a breeder in the US in mind that, if I were to get one of her puppies I'd have to get it sight unseen and that isn't scary to me anymore. Assuming that after talking to her for a couple of months, getting to know her and her goals in breeding, telling her in detail what I'm looking for and making sure we're on the same page on subjective terms like "drive" and "stable" and if all of that went well, I'd feel fine letting her pick my perfect puppy for me.

ETA: Obviously just because a puppy is y as a baby doesn't mean it will be y as an adult (I don't expect a breeder to tell me that 100% this puppy will be drivey and chill with other dogs by the time it's 2 years old LOL), but I'd rather take my chances with a puppy who looks like they might be headed in that direction, rather than take a super reserved puppy and try to make it very outgoing and social.

I can't believe how much I wrote, I must be really overtired!

Quinn - English Shepherd

Last edited by Sit Stay; 07-09-2011 at 01:13 AM.
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Old 07-09-2011, 04:38 AM
Ratboy's Avatar
Ratboy Ratboy is offline
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Join Date: Jul 2004
Location: Toledo, Ohio
Posts: 668

The first pup I picked out myself was my Beagle, Farfel, when I was 8 years old. He was kind of puny then, but something about him made me pick him over his much nicer looking and bigger, sister. His puniness didn't last long, as he wound up being one of the largest Beagles I've ever seen, about 38 pounds and hard as a rock at 2 years old. The next one I picked out was my Lab, Joe, who was the only male available. He had just been wormed, and was very laid back, almost too laid back. Turned out, he had hookworms, and a lot of them. It took several fecal samples and trips to the vet to find them, so I can't blame the breeder. He came to life once the worms were gone, and was a very active dog. Next one was Gus, my Pit mix, who I was talked into "trying out" by my vet's stepdaughter. He was one of 5 pups left by someone to be treated for staph infections on their chins, and never picked up. He was very friendly, and he was a great dog, though afraid of almost everything. King kind of picked us. He came over as soon as they let him out of the refrigerator box he and the other pups were in, and crawled into my mom's lap, and went to sleep. I thought, "Well, he seems kind of laid back!". I was wrong, King is anything but laid back. Molly was picked because she seemed to be a lot like King, and they seemed attached to each other. I was wrong there too. Over 12 years later, Molly is still a basket case, worried about everything, and King is King, evil genius. People say that I seem to pick dogs and cats with odd personalities, and I guess that's true.
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