We raise our puppies in a kennel. They have access to heat or cooling in their dog house as needed depending on the weather. By four weeks of age they have trained themselves to use a “doggie” door to go in and out of their dog house. Since they will naturally not potty where they sleep this transitions well into crate training in your home. Many have contacted us to say house training went very well with no or only occasional accidents within a week or two.
Our puppies are acclimated to the weather which will make traveling easier for them. While on the plane they have controlled temperature but during on- and off-boarding the plane they are exposed to various temperatures. A puppy that has been raised strictly indoors may be stressed by sudden temperature changes they have never experienced.
Many are surprised to hear that often our older puppies (6 – 8 weeks) are sleeping outside in 10 degree weather, by their choice. They have a heated dog house but like it outside.
Sometimes we are asked "Are you a Puppy Mill?" We don't mind the question. It makes sense to ask since most of you will not see your puppy until delivery or shipping day. We would want to know where our puppy was raised. You are relying on your instincts and what you read about us from other new puppy owners. There is so much information in the news about a very few cruel people. Sadly we can't prevent them but we want to assure you we are not a Puppy Mill or any other type of facility that does not care well for their animals. We are licensed by the State of MO and the USDA.
Our AKC inspector told us, if anyone asks about you being a puppy mill, tell them that AKC does not allow puppy mills to register with AKC. That is one reason they do the inspections. She said she has called the state before to shut kennels down.
We are inspected by our vet, the State of Missouri Animal Health Officers and the USDA Animal Care Inspectors. We are also inspected by AKC. There have not been any problems with our dogs/puppies or facilities.
Below is an email we received, one of many similar ones.
Hi Joan and Dennis,
I juat wanted to thank you again for Molly. She is an awesome dog! She has become another member of the family hopping into the RV for camping weekends, sleeping on her bed right next to the sofa in the family room, and riding along in the car to pick the kids up from school. She is so social - never meets a stranger. First thing in the morning, she rushes outside to sit by the fence and greet all the morning walkers. She has met so many people on campgrounds, and she loves them all! We are still working on manners. We've completed two obedience classes at the Tri State Kennel Club, and we are getting ready to sign up for a Canine Good Citizen Class. She has to pass that class before I can take her to agility classes. I don't plan on competing with her, but after watching her taking flying leaps off our short retaining wall and trying to jump up the slide with the kids, only to slide back down again, I think she would do really well in agility. It's amazing how smart she is...she rings the bell to go outside. She knows when it's bedtime, and she goes into each bedroom giving the kids goodnight kisses. She waits in the laundry room each night for Thomas to come home (I think he is her favorite!). We say "Grandma's house", and she is ready to hop into the car to go see Grandma. She even jumps in and swims in the lake with the kids! She is currently on squirrel and rabbit patrol in the backyard - keeping them out of our garden. We love her and couldn't have asked for a more perfect dog. We can't thank you enough! Her pictures are below.
We suggest you be cautious if the breeder doesn't have time to answer questions, repeatedly doesn't return calls (we occasionally have intermittent internet and phone problems but usually not longer than 24 hours and usually one or the other is working, also phone numbers left on voice mail need to be spoken slowly and distinctly. Sometimes we just can't make out the number.), is anxious for you to get the puppy as soon as they are 8 weeks old, not willing to take a puppy back if there is a problem, doesn't offer a guarantee, won't tell you who their vet is, insists that a money order is the only way they take payment. I am sure there are other signs but this is what we know based on the experiences others have told us. We also use an independent shipper who can verify we actually ship puppies and that they are in good condition when shipped. Some good breeders ship on their own so this by itself would not be a reason to not purchase from them.
"It's no coincidence that man's best friend cannot talk."