This post is going to be more personal than any other as today was a really bad day. First a friend called with the news that an outfitter from the Midwest has two of our dogs, he does not like them and wants to get rid off them. Well, we never sold a dog (or two dogs) to any outfitter in this particular state (it is illegal to blood track there). So these dachshunds can’t be out of our breeding (=bred by us). Also in our contract we have “If the buyer at any time chooses to resell or transfer custody of this dog to a third party, the buyer must first notify seller before any resale or transfer to a third party takes place. At this time the seller shall have the first option to repurchase the dog (at the price not higher that the original purchase price) before sale or transfer to a third party.” We repurchased our dogs before. For example, Emma was repurchased for the sales price when her first owner was going through a nasty divorce and had to find a new home for her.
I have encountered this thinking before. If it is a wirehaired dachshund used for tracking, it must be from John and Jolanta. How not true! There are other breeders in this country, and close to 12-15 litters of wirehaired dachshunds out of European blood lines were bred this year. Some litters were sired by our males, but some were not. If there is a “von Moosbach-Zuzelek” dog in a pup’s pedigree a generation or two back, this pup is not “out of our breeding”. Only dogs purchased directly from us are “out of our breeding”.
Anyway, I feel really bad about the two dachshunds mentioned by our friend but I don’t know who bred them.
Next I stumbled upon a hunting forum, where a person we know from online contacts and phone conversations (never met him in person) was giving advice about buying a dachshund for blood tracking. He has a great little dachshund, and we have always been supportive of his work and promoted his accomplishments. He has never owned or worked with dachshunds out of our breeding or bloodlines. Well, it was a shock to find out that “our dogs are overrated and not worth the money we ask people to pay”. Apparently we are very good at marketing, breed dogs for living, and the dogs are not that good. This is not all that was written there, and after I had read the whole thread I felt sick. Why do people have this need of making themselves feel better by putting others down?
In reality we are very selective about buyers. When you go to our website www.born-to-track.com there are no hard sale tricks there, no flashy advertisement. We don’t even have “testimonials” as we want to attract buyers who have done their own research. Actually, we have an “obstacle course” for potential buyers, and we don’t make it easy for people to buy a puppy from us. Yes, we charge quite a bit of money for a puppy, we ask people to come here to pick up a puppy (we don’t ship), which might be very expensive, and we sell our puppies on the AKC limited registration. It is all spelled out very clearly on the website, but I doubt that it is “good marketing”.
Why don’t we sell our pups cheaper? We value our work and time we put into these puppies. We import dogs from Europe, and we don’t get any guarantees from European breeders. We evaluate the imported puppies thoroughly, and we use for breeding only the best individuals (usually 50% of what we import). The evaluation and strict selection are integral parts of our breeding program. We do not put together just any two dogs out of European breeding or sell pups at 7-8 weeks. This is not the way we choose to breed dogs. Most of the time we breed only two litters of pups a year, and we work with puppies until they are at least ten weeks old. Some pups stay here until they are 12-14 weeks old. We spent at least half a day with people who come to pick up pups (no extra fee). We provide as much support as people are willing to accept.
Of course, we have expenses. Our dogs are fed premium food – twice a day. In the morning they get raw diet from Omas Pride (our bill is $700 per two months just for that). In the afternoon they get premium dry kibble. We don’t skimp on veterinary care, and all our dogs undergo eye examination every other year. The dogs have fenced-in 12 acres where they get exercise.
It was hard to read how apparently we profit from dogs because we give so freely our time and work to clubs such as Deer Search and United Blood Trackers. John who has been retired for 9 years from his professional career as a college professor does not charge for his seminars (as most professional dog people do) and sometimes (!) he gets reimbursed for travel. He spends every day two hours on the phone giving trackers encouragement and advice…for free. We don't charge anything for tracking.
Then I did a google search and visited another hunting forum. I read somebody’s post there (of course nobody is using their real name) that John wrote his book “on Hofstra dime”. The truth is that he retired from Hofstra University 9 years ago, and his book was published in 2003!
I have no idea where people come up with stuff like this but certainly it was a day full of nasty discoveries.