Why I would never respond to an add to give a Free Dog, Cat or Other Pet!
I very often see Ads in various places such as Kijiji, Facebook & other places looking for Free Cats, Dogs and other pets. Personally we have dogs, cats, and many other animals and while we respond to ads giving such animals away for free to ensure they get the proper vet care, I would never give away a free cat, dog, etc and I will tell you why.
- There are various places such as the SPCA and Cat/Dog rescues that have amazing pets for rehoming. These pets have been checked by a vet, they have had all the proper tests and needles to ensure your pet is healthy and safe to be around your other pets and children. These animals have also be assessed to ensure they are family friendly. The cost to adopt is MUCH less than any vet fees. If you cannot afford these adoption fees, you can not afford the proper care an animal needs, as these shots, vet checks are necessary.
- In our province in Nova Scotia it is law now that any puppy/dog sold must come with a health certificate from a vet indicating that the pet is healthy. Vets do not work for free, so do you expect the person needing to rehome the dog to pay more money than what they have invested in the dog to give it to you for free?
- If you want free, a red flag goes up that perhaps you cannot afford to take care of the dog properly? What if the dog gets sick? Most vets do not accept payments. What if it it is after hours and you need emergency appointment? How are you getting there? Where is the money coming from?
- What can you expect to pay out for a puppy in the first few months? Example, our last purchase was a Great Pyrenees, he is a livestock dog and got him from a great breeder for an amazing price of $800, we drove 2 1/2 hours each way to get him. He needed a county tag which is $12 annually. He came with his first set of needles. He was going to required 2 more sets of needles, wormer (you always need to give various dewormers to puppies over the first little bit), flea & tick medicine. Each visit is approx $120. Before his 3rd set of needles, I’m not sure what the issue was but he got extremely sick to the point we were scared we may loose him. We rushed him to the vet; vet visit and 4 sets of medications = $220 vet bill. Our $800 dog now cost $1272, not including gas to get him & all the vet visits, toys, food, leashes, collar, etc. He still needs classes next, so that is an additional expense.
- Farm animals such as goats, sheep, even mini horses, people think they can throw them some hay and water and they are all good as low maintenance farm animals. Even if you do not have the vet to your property you still need to buy the things they need other than food, such as dewormer and the needle to put it in the animal, selimum – Its like vitamins for the animals.
Why do Dogs Cost so much?
This is something I see so often so I wanted to address this including, registered breeders, breeders, backyard breeders and puppy mills and the terms get so mixed up so often and I have seen people get attacked on Facebook and other places for this reason.
Most breeds did not exist until people mixed breeds and after years of perfecting the standard they were accepted into the CKC Registered Dog Breeds. There was not always as many breeds of dog as there is today, so just because a dog is not CKC Registered does not make the person breeding them bad. Our dog is a pure Great Pyrenees as both of his parents were, he is not CKC registered, it would have cost me much more to purchase one that was CKC registered however it does not make him any less effective as doing his job as a livestock dog. It does not make him look any different than one that is CKC registered. I did not purchase him for the purpose of show or breeding which is why most people go with the CKC registered.
CKC Registered Breeds are $$$$$ – They are you more expensive dog with good reason, they are up to top standard of the dogs, they are show quality dogs, they normally come with a non breeding contract or you need to pay more and usually come with a 1-2 year health guarantee. They know the lineage of the parents of the dogs and other history on the parents, grandparents etc.
Breeders $$$$ – These are people who may breed their own pets however the dogs purpose is not for breeding. The dogs are not CKC registered and can be a pure breed or a mixed dog (such as a PomaPoo). Both the parents and the puppies see the vet on a regular basis. The mother dog is not bred back to back and her health should be most important. They should insist on new puppy parents coming to their home and should have questions for the potential new owners. These puppies will be vet checked and have their first needles, etc. Many breeders will offer some sort of a pet guarantee.
Backyard Breeders $$$ – These are similar to puppy mills on a smaller scale. People who are back yard breeders tend to have more than one dog they breed and breed them back to back (twice a year) and their primary reason for having the dog(s) is for breeding purposes. The puppies occasionally get to see the vet and the puppies have no guarantee.
Puppy Mills $$ – While you might pay less for a breed you know you should be paying more for, do you know if they parents were related? Did they see the vet? Will they let you come to their home? Most puppy mills have multiple dogs for the sole purpose of breeding them over and over again. These dogs do not see vets, the puppies do not see vets . The more you support these places, they more they will continue.
Shelter/Rescue $ – Just because you pay the least does not mean that is the worst. This, in my opinion is your best option. They have been checked by the vet, they have everything to make them healthy, all they are missing is a great home!
Small dogs are usually the most expensive to raise up as puppies for the first few months due to their tiny size at birth, very often the mother dog needs vet assistance and the puppies will require a heated dog bed for their first few weeks. Often the mother dog does not product enough milk if she has more than 2-3 puppies which requires formula supplements and often syringe or bottle. They take a considerable amount of extra time as you need to weight them to ensure they are gaining weight. If you need to feed them yourself, that is every 3-4 hours.
Sometimes people forget the incredible amount of time that is involved with a litter of puppies, the vet costs, the higher nutrient food for healthy mamma and babies.
***Never meet people in parking lots or other places. Insist on visiting their home and seeing where you puppy came from. Ask as many questions as you want. Ask what vet they use and feel free to call the vet and check for yourself. **
Is there anything else you would suggest for a new pet owner??