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Dog ownership is a decision that brings many rewards with it. These can include a healthier lifestyle, improved sociability and sense of community, as well as companionship. To ensure that you are able to enjoy these benefits it is essential that you ask yourself the following questions before getting a puppy or dog:

  • Can I afford to have a dog? (Ongoing expenses such as food, veterinary fees and canine insurance can cost roughly £25 a week).
  • Can I make a lifelong commitment to a dog? (A dog’s average life span is 12 years).
  • Do I have a home big enough to house a dog?
  • Am i aware of the destruction to my home an untrained dog will cause?
  • Is my garden secure and escape proof for a dog?
  • Am i prepared to exercise a dog daily?
  • Will I find time to train, groom and generally care for a dog?
  • Will I be able to answer YES to these questions?

If you have answered ‘NO’ to any of the above, you should think again before getting a dog.

What is a pedigree dog?

A pedigree dog is the offspring of a dam and sire of the same breed, which is eligible for registration with a recognised club or society that maintain a register for dogs of that description. All pedigree dogs carry a breed standard – a picture in words that describes each breed of pedigree dog – for their likely character and health needs. Consider what job your intended breed was designed to do, and whether you can cope with the innate behaviour that will accompany it.

BUYING AN IRISH SETTER PUPPY

Once you have decided that an Irish Setter is for you , you will need to find a breeder.

The Kennel Club can help with this or you can contact our puppy list co-ordinator.

The ISBC have a code of ethics that all members must abide by.

Do make sure you have a list of questions to ask the breeder, you must expect the breeder to want to know more about you and your family too.

What to expect from a breeder/some more advice from the Kennel Club

  • The breeder should give you the opportunity to see the puppy with its mother and the rest of litter. This is very important because it will not only give you an opportunity to see the temperament of the mother, but may also give you an idea of the future characteristics and size of the puppy

  • Have the opportunity to see all the puppies and be able to handle them, rather than just seeing the puppy being offered to you

  • It is the responsibility of the breeder to register the litter with the Kennel Club, and microchip each puppy in the litter where both will initially be registered in the breeders’ name. The breeder chooses the official Kennel Club names for all the puppies

  • Under normal circumstances, litter registration with the Kennel Club takes about 14 days, after which time the breeder will receive the registration certificates for all the puppies in the litter. If there is a query with the application the Kennel Club will contact the breeder to resolve and further action may be required which may delay the registration process

  • If the dog is advertised as Kennel Club registered you should ensure that you take receipt of the Kennel Club Registration Certificate. You must then proceed to apply to the Kennel Club to transfer your dog into your own name. Please be aware that you will require the signature of the breeder to complete this. If the registrations certificate is not available at the time of purchase, ensure that you receive an undertaking in writing from the breeder that this will be sent to you when available

  • A responsible breeder will provide background on socialisation they have already provided to your puppy and advice on continuing work in this area when you get home.  Ideally when you choose your puppy, try and find a litter that have been raised in a house as similar to yours as possible (so with children if you have children, in a noisy environment if you have a noisy house, with cats if you have cats etc). If your puppy has come from a breeder who follows the Puppy Socialisation Plan, you already know that he has had a good start in life, and also you know he is well on the way to making a perfect addition to your family.  If your puppy is from a breeder or rescue and hasn’t had the advantages of the Puppy Socialisation Plan start in life, don’t panic. Just start today and follow the Puppy Socialisation Plan from now on in order for him to get the chance to catch up with a lot of the things he has missed.

What to ask the breeder

  • A Contract of Sale – it is recommended that the breeder provide you with this. Amongst other things this should detail both the breeders’ and your responsibility to the puppy. The contract should also list any official Kennel Club endorsements (restrictions) that the breeder has placed on the puppy’s records, and in particular on what basis the breeder may be prepared to remove the endorsement. Endorsements the breeder may place on your puppy include not for breeding and not for export. Before or at the time of sale, you must give a signed acknowledgement of any endorsement placed

  • Written advice on training, feeding, exercise, worming and immunisation

  • A pedigree detailing your dog’s ancestry – this could either be hand-written or a printed pedigree from either the breeder or an official one from the Kennel Club

  • Copies of any additional health certificatesfor the sire and dam

  • Just like humans, some breeds of dogs can be affected by inherited conditions. The Kennel Club and the British Veterinary Association offer three canine health schemes, which aim to detect and monitor certain inherited conditions. It is important that you are aware of these conditions and know the right questions to ask of breeders before buying a puppy. There are also some DNA tests now available for certain breeds. Visit our Breed Information Centre for breed specific health information

  • Ask which vaccinations your puppy has had (if any) and which ones are still required

Good luck with your new family member, having an Irish Setter will change your life!

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