Pets

What's the best place to get a dog? (first time)

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  • Jul 26th, 2021 6:04 pm
[OP]
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Nov 1, 2017
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What's the best place to get a dog? (first time)

Looking to get a mid/large size dog(s) for the family.
We're all adults and pretty active.

The plan was to buy off Kijiji since they usually have pictures and descriptions of the dogs. but it seems redflagdeals hates Kijiji....(and I'm worried about buying a dog that might die an early death... does pet insurance cover that?)

I looked into some licensed breeders, and they seem to charge 2x Kijiji (~$4000 to $6000 and have long wait periods).

I don't know what shelters/rescues prices are, since they don't seem to list "inventory" or prices. I also don't know if we have what it takes to retrain a dog that's learnt bad habits.

Thoughts? any recommendations?
35 replies
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Jan 19, 2008
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pet insurance does not cover death...it is not life insurance- it is vet procedure insurance
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Jan 28, 2014
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PerformingAzura - I suggest that you wait to get a dog until after the pandemic eases (well, the extent that it ever does). RFD notwithstanding, I would never recommend that someone buy a dog from Kijiji or the like.

There are very few dogs in Canada - if any. If you are very lucky you can get a dog through a rescue that is from another country - but there are many horror stories related to that - as well as some good ones. It is up to you to decide whether to go that route - but you will be dealing with a rescue and all that that entails.

No matter what you do you will pay much more for a dog that you would have pre pandemic. Which is one of the reasons why I suggested that you wait. There are going to be many dogs rehomed afterwards, I am very sorry to say and really hope that I am wrong.

Re pet insurance, there are really no guarantees. I have known dogs that came from breeders that have died of cancer at age 4, or some other horrible disease - basically there are no guarantees in life - same as with people. There are many plans available, but you have to look at a plan that covers Canadian dogs (they may well cover dogs that travel to the U.S. but residence is primary - hence Canada) and we do not have as many pet insurers in Canada as in the U.S. and it is very important that you read all of the fine print.

But there is no "life insurance" for pets. It is illness/disease/accident based. And it is best to get the insurance when the dog is young. And some pet insurers will not cover dogs that are not born in Canada partly due to pre-existing conditions which are not covered.

Best of luck to you. By the way, I would get pet insurance if I had a young dog and we did have pet insurance on our dog who passed last year at 16.5 years of age, and it was taken out when he was a puppy. Basically, hindsight is everything - if you don't take insurance you will need it, if you do, you would have been better off with a bank account.
[OP]
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xxxray wrote: pet insurance does not cover death...it is not life insurance- it is vet procedure insurance
Blanche123 wrote: PerformingAzura - I suggest that you wait to get a dog until after the pandemic eases (well, the extent that it ever does). RFD notwithstanding, I would never recommend that someone buy a dog from Kijiji or the like.

There are very few dogs in Canada - if any. If you are very lucky you can get a dog through a rescue that is from another country - but there are many horror stories related to that - as well as some good ones. It is up to you to decide whether to go that route - but you will be dealing with a rescue and all that that entails.

No matter what you do you will pay much more for a dog that you would have pre pandemic. Which is one of the reasons why I suggested that you wait. There are going to be many dogs rehomed afterwards, I am very sorry to say and really hope that I am wrong.

Re pet insurance, there are really no guarantees. I have known dogs that came from breeders that have died of cancer at age 4, or some other horrible disease - basically there are no guarantees in life - same as with people. There are many plans available, but you have to look at a plan that covers Canadian dogs (they may well cover dogs that travel to the U.S. but residence is primary - hence Canada) and we do not have as many pet insurers in Canada as in the U.S. and it is very important that you read all of the fine print.

But there is no "life insurance" for pets. It is illness/disease/accident based. And it is best to get the insurance when the dog is young. And some pet insurers will not cover dogs that are not born in Canada partly due to pre-existing conditions which are not covered.

Best of luck to you. By the way, I would get pet insurance if I had a young dog and we did have pet insurance on our dog who passed last year at 16.5 years of age, and it was taken out when he was a puppy. Basically, hindsight is everything - if you don't take insurance you will need it, if you do, you would have been better off with a bank account.
Thanks for the input.
I have a friend who had a dog replaced by the breeder when it died shortly after purchase.
I think I was confusing pet insurance with that breeder's policy.

If I get a dog, I'll definitely buy insurance.
Might go unused like you say, but I don't want to be in a situation where I have to choose the dog or a mortgage payment.
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Like some have said. Good luck in finding a pup from a reputable breeder, because you want to avoid Kijiji or sites like that. I have heard stories of some people getting the puppy and not being the actually breed of dog or some weird mix of it. We wanted to have someone around for my current guy Buddy, who is 9.5yrs old. We have had my cousins dog with us/him for almost the past 5 years and now he has moved out and want to keep him active. We thought about a golden rescue but we didn’t know what conditions they were living in, if they got along with other dogs and young kids. Thankfully we were able to skip a line with the breeder we got our first golden retriever from, picked which pup yesterday and get to take this guy home in 3 weeks.

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Sep 12, 2011
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Where are you located?
Consider adopting a dog from Dog Tales Rescue & Sanctuary, www.dogtales.ca
You won't find a puppy, but you will receive a fully vetted (fixed/vaccinated/microchipped) dog who has worked with their trainers on staff.
Plus side, you're not going to have to deal with all the training a new puppy requires.
Dog Tales really goes into detail with the dog's personality and screening to ensure a good match (+an hour of private training to ensure you continue its training)!

Whatever you do, avoid Craigslist/Kijiji/FB etc.
https://www.topcashback.com/ref/member927781724407
PAYS IN USD. No minimum payout amount. PayPal option.
[OP]
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lovejunkie wrote: Where are you located?
Consider adopting a dog from Dog Tales Rescue & Sanctuary, www.dogtales.ca
You won't find a puppy, but you will receive a fully vetted (fixed/vaccinated/microchipped) dog who has worked with their trainers on staff.
Plus side, you're not going to have to deal with all the training a new puppy requires.
Dog Tales really goes into detail with the dog's personality and screening to ensure a good match (+an hour of private training to ensure you continue its training)!

Whatever you do, avoid Craigslist/Kijiji/FB etc.
I'm in Mississauga.
I did find a guy on Kijiji that says he's not a breeder. (He's charging breeder prices though) He just owns the dad, and apparently its the mom's first set of pups.

I did give Dogtales a check, but most of the listings are for these dogs are over a 1 year old....would they still be there...?
I'll give them an email
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Jul 16, 2019
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PerformingAzura wrote: I'm in Mississauga.
I did find a guy on Kijiji that says he's not a breeder. (He's charging breeder prices though) He just owns the dad, and apparently its the mom's first set of pups.

I did give Dogtales a check, but most of the listings are for these dogs are over a 1 year old....would they still be there...?
I'll give them an email
You are going about this a bit backwards.
First identify the breed(s) that you are interested in. Maybe kennel club of Canada.
Then look for a good breeder. Most FB ads and Kijiji ads are puppy mills or people breeding dogs who have no idea what they are doing.
A good breeder will have been breeding for some time and will have lineage of the dogs. The dog parents were probably winning awards. They will vet all prospective owners to make sure it is a good fit. They will provide kennel club registrations. They will provide all sorts of advise before and after you purchase. Our breeder maintains a very active FB group where she and all owners post pictures, questions and answers, meetups etc. A reputable breeder will have a formal contract that both parties sign - some of the clauses are that you do not breed the dog, you must spay/neuter within a time frame, if you decide you do not want the dog the breeder has first right of refusal, etc. The breeder will also microchip the dog and provide you with vets papers including tests, etc. Every decent breeder will have a waiting list - they are careful in breeding and managing litters so they do not breed a ton every month - hence the wait list, our breeder current waitlist is a year. They carefully select the male and female, take care of the female thru pregnancy, care and raise the pups till they are 8 weeks old before giving them to the new families. As others said, the pandemic has seen a huge surge in demand for dogs and likely some people will give them back once they have to resume their normal routine.
You can ask people in the area where they got their dogs from - they will likely state a breeder or will say something like I got it from a friends litter or from a rescue, etc.
Also remember to take your dog for training - this is a must.
A dog is a commitment.
[OP]
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Thanks. I found a few dogs I'd be interested in adopting. Unfortunately, alot of them were international dogs (dogs still in other countries, or dogs scheduled to come here), so pet insurance might be a nogo.

Fostering might also be a good option, but I'm not seeing too many places offer that.
Fees are kinda hefty ($1000 to 5000$) and some of them require that you pay for GPS tracking for a year and sign a bunch of contracts, but I think these organizations know that they are doing.
Going to spend some time reading up.

vernonco wrote: You are going about this a bit backwards.
First identify the breed(s) that you are interested in. Maybe kennel club of Canada.
Then look for a good breeder. Most FB ads and Kijiji ads are puppy mills or people breeding dogs who have no idea what they are doing.
A good breeder will have been breeding for some time and will have lineage of the dogs. The dog parents were probably winning awards. They will vet all prospective owners to make sure it is a good fit. They will provide kennel club registrations. They will provide all sorts of advise before and after you purchase. Our breeder maintains a very active FB group where she and all owners post pictures, questions and answers, meetups etc. A reputable breeder will have a formal contract that both parties sign - some of the clauses are that you do not breed the dog, you must spay/neuter within a time frame, if you decide you do not want the dog the breeder has first right of refusal, etc. The breeder will also microchip the dog and provide you with vets papers including tests, etc. Every decent breeder will have a waiting list - they are careful in breeding and managing litters so they do not breed a ton every month - hence the wait list, our breeder current waitlist is a year. They carefully select the male and female, take care of the female thru pregnancy, care and raise the pups till they are 8 weeks old before giving them to the new families. As others said, the pandemic has seen a huge surge in demand for dogs and likely some people will give them back once they have to resume their normal routine.
You can ask people in the area where they got their dogs from - they will likely state a breeder or will say something like I got it from a friends litter or from a rescue, etc.
Also remember to take your dog for training - this is a must.
A dog is a commitment.
This dude had a breed that I was interested and since he wasn't a breeder, I figured it would be more ethical to purchase from him rather than a full time breeder.
Every decent breeder will have a waiting list - they are careful in breeding and managing litters so they do not breed a ton every month - hence the wait list, our breeder current waitlist is a year.
I understand why this is important, but this is also the reason why "irresponsible" kijiji breeders are so attractive. You can pickup a dog in a few days and not have to wait.

I think I'm going to go with a rescue. It won't be immediate, as the organization relies on volunteer flights, but that will give me time to prepare.
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Feb 11, 2009
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PerformingAzura wrote:
This dude had a breed that I was interested and since he wasn't a breeder, I figured it would be more ethical to purchase from him rather than a full time breeder.

I understand why this is important, but this is also the reason why "irresponsible" kijiji breeders are so attractive. You can pickup a dog in a few days and not have to wait.

I think I'm going to go with a rescue. It won't be immediate, as the organization relies on volunteer flights, but that will give me time to prepare.
This is the part I don't understand. Why would you want to get a dog from unexperience dog owner who have never done it got a litter of puppy.
It's NOT more ethical to do that.

Breeders are OK if they do their job properly. Puppy mills that plump out puppies to sell are NOT.

Un-experience home breeders may not be a great choice if they don't know the science and background with their breeding and how to take care of the puppies. There isn't enough history and knowledge .

So if you want to get a puppy from a breeder/homebased breeder (they are also breeders... just smaller scale) , get from one with good history and one way to do so is to contact the kennel club of Canada of the specific breed you want.

Again, getting a dog is a commitment. It should not be associated with any implusive "need" to get the puppy in a few days after seeing their pictures. (which as you said kijiji provided and we are not a fan of)
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May 14, 2009
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PerformingAzura wrote: I'm in Mississauga.
I did find a guy on Kijiji that says he's not a breeder. (He's charging breeder prices though) He just owns the dad, and apparently its the mom's first set of pups.

I did give Dogtales a check, but most of the listings are for these dogs are over a 1 year old....would they still be there...?
I'll give them an email
I suggest staying away from Dog Tales; I’ve heard horror stories from two different people that have worked there and their stories were very similar.

Check out the OSPCA or Save Our Scruff; I think they’ve both recently taken in a group of dogs. Some of the soon to be available dogs might not be listed as they’re still being assessed, etc.
[OP]
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shoppingBear wrote:
This is the part I don't understand. Why would you want to get a dog from unexperience dog owner who have never done it got a litter of puppy.
It's NOT more ethical to do that.

Breeders are OK if they do their job properly. Puppy mills that plump out puppies to sell are NOT.

Un-experience home breeders may not be a great choice if they don't know the science and background with their breeding and how to take care of the puppies. There isn't enough history and knowledge .

So if you want to get a puppy from a breeder/homebased breeder (they are also breeders... just smaller scale) , get from one with good history and one way to do so is to contact the kennel club of Canada of the specific breed you want.

Again, getting a dog is a commitment. It should not be associated with any implusive "need" to get the puppy in a few days after seeing their pictures. (which as you said kijiji provided and we are not a fan of)
I know as much about dog pregnancy as I know about human pregnancy; meaning I know nothing.

I figured the reason you'd stay away from breeders is because you want to discourage people breeding dogs for profit without care of the dog's wellbeing. So when I saw the ad from the dude who wasn't a breeder, I figured it was a result of two people who didn't get their dogs fixed, not wanting to deal with the situation. The most if the breeders on Kijiji, from what I saw, were simply pumping out puppies without a waitlist.

In any case, I'm not going to go down this route. If the rescue I planned to get doesn't pan out, I'll just chill and see how post-covid works out.

Like @Blanche123 mentioned, current prices to buy puppy from a reputable breeder is pretty high.
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I just want to point out that I don't think I have ever seen a proper breeder on kijiiji. Sure these people are breeding dogs, but they are not real breeders. Veronoco and shoppingbear have already said what a proper breeder does, so I won't rehash that. I'm ok with people who accidentally have puppies and need to sell them but how many are really legitimately doing that or is it a side hustle for them. The problem with people who breed dogs and have no idea what they are doing may be introducing or perpetuating genetic problems into the dog they are selling. I have a friend who has a friend who loves dogs and wanted to breed his dogs and sell them cheaply because he wanted everyone to be able to have a chihuahua. These dogs have soooo many health problems, and they usually don't show up until after the second year.

There's no guarantees in life but you can stack odds in your favour by getting a well bred dog to begin with that may cost more upfront, or pay later with a dog of unknown lineage and potential expensive vet bills and heartaches. Or if you prefer to adopt, just be prepared and have money for future vet bills. What makes me really angry are people who want to get a cheap dog and then abandon it when bills are too high.
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Jul 31, 2017
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Blanche123 wrote: There are very few dogs in Canada - if any.
Huh?

If you are very lucky you can get a dog through a rescue that is from another country - but there are many horror stories related to that - as well as some good ones. It is up to you to decide whether to go that route - but you will be dealing with a rescue and all that that entails.

Rescues are often the best dogs to have. They seem to know that you saved them, and love you all the more for it.
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Jul 31, 2017
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amz155 wrote: I suggest staying away from Dog Tales; I’ve heard horror stories from two different people that have worked there and their stories were very similar.
You should back up a statement like that.
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May 14, 2009
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SkynyrdsInyrds wrote: You should back up a statement like that.
And contribute to the potential risk the previous employees would face? Their stories would make them immediately identifiable and I’m not interested in putting them on blast.
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Jul 31, 2017
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amz155 wrote: And contribute to the potential risk the previous employees would face? Their stories would make them immediately identifiable and I’m not interested in putting them on blast.

What risk? If they no longer work there, then there is no risk. Nice cop-out though.

You cannot make a claim and expect it to be taken seriously unless you back it up. You haven't, so it is nothing more than hearsay.
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Dec 12, 2009
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I suggest you wait until after things open up.
The first reason being experience or lack of it. Once open puppy schools will reopen. You need to learn how to train & the pup can learn how to socialize.
We are experienced & got a pup a year ago. Basic training is good, socialization is not so good. Can't wait to socialize in a controlled environment.
Second reason is once things open up, I predict the pounds etc will fill up with people that refind their lives and those cute pups no longer fit their lifestyle.
We've had both mixed breeds from the pound & purebreds from well known & reputable breeders. Neither is a guarantee of health. We choose to self insure. Insurance has too many limits & carries at least a 30% overhead. Plan on at least $1G a year in vet bills over the life of your new pup. The cheap years cover the more expensive ones.
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Its a very challenging time to adopt. I've gone through breeders and from sellers/breeders on kijiji for a specific cat breed and it either amounted to exorbitant costs, and wait lists (even bidding wars to get on them). There are A LOT of sellers looking to take advantage of people right now. Be sure they are certified through organizations like CKC and be sure they are indeed registered. A lot of scammers use those wix hosted websites which are basically untraceable and will dress them up pretty fancy to look like they're legit.

If they don't allow in-person visits, which a lot of places won't do because of the pandemic, be sure they can at least provide references to other previous buyers or the vet they go through. Expect to do an etransfer deposit (which is normal), but just be careful.

Like others have mentioned, I feel its more preferable to wait a year or 2... it seems certain there will be A LOT of pets up for adoption when things open up again who will need homes.

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