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Why are Back yard breeders bad?

June 1st, 2007, 12:39 PM
After reading a few treads there seams to be a lot of people who a) do not know what a back-yard-breeder is and/or b) dont really care. Everyone hears about puppy mills, but I feel these are just as bad.

So from what I have seen/heard/read about byb's is this:

a) byb's do not do health tests on the dogs they use for breeding, why? it is too costly.

b) byb's usually breed several dogs at a time/year, and often have more than one breed, resulting in those "designer" breeds we keep hearing about. They quite frequently breed the same bitch every time she comes into season, resulting in 2 litters a year, which is extrememly stressful on a dog.

c) they do not compete with the dogs to earn titles, and determine if the dog is good enough to pass on it's bloodlines, why? again, too costly.

d) byb's seldom register the pups with a recognized kennel club (AKC, UKC or CKC), why? you guessed it, too costly.

e) they may or may not provide the buyer with vaccination papers, and a microchip number, again, this costs money.

f) they often have the dogs/puppies in dirty or small cages/pens. Keeping the area and pen neat and tidy requires time and effort, byb's dont like those two words.

g) byb's often use there own dogs for breeding many generations, resulting in line-breeding that is too close, or even in-breeding.

Because of this, and other reasons, the dogs produced from byb's often experience an increase in the following (but results are unlimited).

- hip displasia
- cataracts
- heart murmers and malformations
- epilepsy
- hypo/hyper thyroidism
- elbow/knee displasia or slipped knee caps
- poor spine alignment and disfigurement due to breeding a long bodied dog to a heavy boned dog
- sight and hearing loss
- skin and hair problems
- general illness and disease

The list of problems associated with puppies that come from these places is endless, and the costs of maintaining an ill dog far outweigh the cost of getting a good one in the first place.

Aside from illness and disease, there are several other things that we can credit the byb with doing.

- creating the "oodle" craze and other associated "designer breeds"
- changing the way we look at certain breeds. eg. Labradors are supposed to be "22.5 to 24.5 inches at the shoulder and weigh 60 -75lbs" (quoted the CKC standard). Look at some of the labs you see around, they far out-weigh the standard.
- changing the way dogs act toward people. Eg. American Staffordshire Terriers "Bright, allert and courageous, the Am-Staff is a great family pet, but, because of its terrier nature, early obedience training is recommended", again quoting the CKC standard (much the same is said of the Staffordshire Bull Terrier). Those viscious, "man-eating" dogs around today are not from reputable breeders who are trying to better the breed. In fact, the Pit-Bull that is so popular is not even a recognized breed, but a man-made one.

Although not all byb's will fall under every one of these things, a good, reputable breeder will not do any of them, (except those that should be done).

I hope this help a few of you understand why byb's are not doing the dog world any good, and most of the dogs in shelters started life this way.

Oh, one more thing, byb's include anyone who has a dog and is breeding it to either make money from it, give it the chance to experience motherhood (a sad reason I hear very often), or any other silly reason, but not breeding with the intention of bettering the breed.

June 1st, 2007, 12:45 PM
Excellent post :thumbs up
I think this should be added to the encyclopedia or as a sticky :)

June 1st, 2007, 12:50 PM
great post!!!!
when i first started coming here i knew of puppymills but nothing of BYBs i think the education really needs to be much more far spread and posts like these are an excellent way to start

June 1st, 2007, 01:01 PM
Very good article.

Until I started coming to pet forums this past winter, I didn't know about BYB either (only mills). We took our puppy from one, no cash exchanged (I thought I was doing the right thing by rescuing her from a horrible short life and certain death - which was true, the vet said she would have been dead in days - but still). I understand now why it's important not to support this industry, even by "rescuing" the dogs, and will not make the mistake again. I will be getting any future pups from established, reputable rescues, or, possibly from registered breeders. Too many dogs in shelters and rescues need homes.

It is very hard, however, to see the poor dogs in a horrible situation like what Jaida was in, and leave them behind. I guess it's better to simply not respond to ads or signs (like we did- big mistake -no chance of leaving without Jaida once we saw her) unless they're from non-BYB/mill sources.

June 1st, 2007, 01:19 PM
Excellent article Ihavetoomany! Very educational!

June 1st, 2007, 04:16 PM
I vote for a sticky!

June 1st, 2007, 04:38 PM
Let's also note that there is little to no legislation or protection for animals and back-yard breeder's.

Case in point: I am aware of a person who was (until she was evicted for other reasons) living in a room (8 feet by 10 feet room) with another adult, 3 large dogs and a litter of 7 puppies. Nothing under the residential tenancies, rooming house act, city by-law's or any animal cruelty legislation precluded this person from continuing as a BYB'er as long as each litter of puppies were gone within a few months.:mad:

I personally can find no valid reason for anyone to be a backyard breeder. I have seen people join this board who are byb'ers and try to justify themselves as responsible and caring with the welfare of animals foremost in their hearts and minds, even claiming to have mentors, and then in the next breath it becomes apparent that they know nothing about necessary health certs and/or can't afford Vet bills. I find there is little difference between a puppymill and a byb except perhaps in the scale of operation and in some cases the conditions of care.

June 1st, 2007, 04:41 PM
100% ditto mumx3

June 1st, 2007, 05:56 PM
I also have to give credit to about BYB'S,when i got damien i knew nothing about BYB's i only knew i despised pet store that sold dogs and cats,and would never go there.When i got damien i found him in the paper so we drove from Kentucky to Ohio to get him,house and yard were beautiful,clean and what not,they brought the dad in the kitchen and showed us the mom who was in the backyard ,but i cant recall why we couldnt play with her,they also bred i think it was akitas.There were 2 puppies left,DAMIEN was not my choice because he would not come to us and stayed in the corner,the other plopped right in my lap but had a black face,my finance did not want one with black face.So damien it was,looking back i dont totally blame myself for how it turned out,could of been some issues on his moms side ,he hid in the corner.So to THANK YOU for all the info on scumbag BYB, i know now and will NEVER EVER get another dog from anywhere but the humane society or a rescue place.NO WAY NO HOW.............

June 2nd, 2007, 02:33 AM
Great post IHTM. I also vote for a stick on this one :thumbs up .

June 2nd, 2007, 10:37 AM
While I love the OP, my definitions are slightly different.

IMHO - A backyard breeder is someone who has a dog (or two) that has a litter once or twice a year. Usually, they are well meaning folk - they take the dog(s) to the vet for shots, get the required license from the city, etc. but they are very sure that everyone wants or needs a dog as wonderful as theirs.

Once someone has worked their way up to breeding caged dogs, having litters on the ground all the time, and are breeding more then one breed - they have taken the leap into the world of the miller.

June 6th, 2007, 02:07 PM
Thanks everyone, I just thought there needed to be an explanation for those who were not really sure what we kept talking about.

LavenderRott- that is what I meant with my last paragraph about people having only one dog and breeding "for the fun of it". You see, most good breeders do only have one or two litters a year, that is because the put so much effort into the few that they have, there is no way they could afford to have more than that.

I know several people who fit into this category, and sadly no matter how much you try to talk to them, they are doing their own thing. I have a friend who actually suggests to his puppy buyers that they get at least one litter out of the dog they bought from him to help pay for it, and he complains that he can not sell all his pups, ugh, this ticks me off so much. He breeds his dogs every heat cycle, we tell him to stop, but even though he has killed his best dog doing this, he continues. I wish we could report him, but the dogs are not in danger or in terrible living conditions, so we can only sit back and hope that someday he clues in.

June 14th, 2007, 03:45 PM
I agree, some of the things listed would put the breeder more into the puppymill catagory, such as keeping them in small dirty cages or pens. That's something that even most uneducated pet owners would look at and go "whoa, I'm not buying from them.

The problem with BYBs is that they appear to be reputable to the uneducated buyer.
Plenty of BYBs get their puppies medical care, make sure they have all their shots and even keep the dogs in the house, or a clean building/kennel. The dogs may be purebred, registered and very well taken care of, so until the person buying the puppy from them ends up with health problems or behavioral problems, there aren't any noticeable red flags.

I think for anyone that is confused about a BYB breeder they should read the two stickies at the top of the forum about finding a reputable breeder and the importance of OFA and CERF.
If the breeder you are planning to buy from doesn't fit all the points listed in either of those threads they may very well be a BYB.

Some breeders may not fit every point listed in those 2 threads, but fit most of them, and perhaps they can't be considered a BYB, but it doesn't make them ethical. There are a few seemingly reputable breeders, that even show their dogs whom I would never ever buy a puppy from.
That's why it's important to read and understand EVERY quality that should be found in a good breeder. Those that don't fit the label of BYB may not be someone that you want a puppy from either.