QUESTIONS FOR THE BREEDER
Do not hesitate to ask the breeder questions about the litter. This is common practice. Before buying a Chihuahua you must know the details of the breeder and the heritage of the dog. These will help you in determining the health and personality of your puppy. A breeder will also consider it normal for you to ask these questions, not doing so could be a red flag for breeders who are concerned about their litter. Here are some questions you could ask before buying a Chihuahua:
Can I see the puppies with their mother?
Seeing if the mother is nice and friendly can be of importance. Puppies often inherit their temperament. However, be careful not to confuse often with always! Additionally, a female Chihuahua that is not the mother will not necessarily tolerate another dogs litter. So if you see them together it will also give you an indication that they are really her puppies!
Is there a health record of the mother?
A health record can show you if there are illnesses they might have inherited. Be careful not to confuse normal dog illnesses for hereditary Chihuahua illnesses. Check out “Health” for more information. Good breeders will have records of the dogs they breed!
How old are the puppies?
As mentioned before puppies should only be sold around the 12 week mark. They should be at least eight weeks old before they leave their mother (7w as the absolute minimum).
Are the puppies weaned?
Weaning should stop around the 8 week mark. If they are not weaned it could mean they are younger then the breeder claims!
How old is the Chihuahua’s mother?
The mother should at least be over one year old. Ideally, you would want a mother that has passed the two-year mark to make sure all organs are fully developed. Complications might also arise when the dog is too old. The last litter of a dog should typically be around the 8 year mark.
Have they been wormed?
All puppies have worms at birth. The breeder should start worming after two to three weeks after birth. You should continue the worming if the procedure has not been completed.
Have they had any vaccinations and when is the next dose due?
Puppies are vaccinated between week 6 and week 9, then again at week 10 to week 12. You will need to get the second vaccination if your pup has not received it yet.
What should I feed my puppy?
Good breeders usually have enough food to continue the same diet for a few days. If he is willing to give/sell you some it is best to do so. Being consistent in your pupp’s diet can prevent potential stress. Don’t worry though, if you cannot do so you will not harm your puppy. Additionally, you could ask the breeder for a diet sheet that shows you how feeding should change as your puppy grows. More information can be found in the “Food” Section.
Where are the puppies raised?
Are they raised inside or outside, in a kennel or in a home? It is advised to see the area and verify the condition the puppies are kept in.
What kind of socialisation and experiences has the pup had?
Puppies should be raised in a home environment with the noise and sounds of a normal home. Dogs raised in kennels away from the house usually need more social training to ensure they can adopt to their new lifestyle. Being in a kennel is not the same as living in a calm house. If puppies have already met other dogs and puppies, or other animals, it will have more confidence to face them again. If this is not the case it is your job to introduce them to this in a calm and soothing fashion.
When can I take the puppy home?
As mentioned before it is important to keep the litter with their mother for at least 8 weeks. Some breeders will care more about money than they do about dogs. If you are allowed to take the puppy away sooner than the eight-week-mark, you should not buy the puppy. The first step to buying a Chihuahua is trusting the breeder.
Does the mother or father have any traits they are proud of?
Traits can sometimes be inherited. If you are lucky it could be that these traits are inherited by your puppy.
How long have you been breeding, and what traits are you selecting if any?
If the breeder has been in this line of work for a while, he will have most likely develeopen a preference and would have selected specific physical traits to breed. Showing interest in his profession/hobby will make the breeder appreciate you and in turn he will give you as much information as possible about the litter.
If I bought an unhealthy puppy, can I bring it back?
This might seem odd, but a good breeder will demand to take back an unhealthy puppy. His reputation is at stake and a good breeder generally cares for his litter and heritage. If you buy a puppy, visit the vet within 48-hours to make sure you made the right purchase.
What can I expect from you after I take the puppy home?
Good breeders offer advice on feeding, housebreaking, training and other hurdles you might have to face. Do not expect the breeder to go completely out of his or her way to resolve your issues. Breeders sometimes follow-up on their litter to know that they have a good home. Make sure your home is one of these homes!
Finally, and maybe most importantly, do not be surprised if the breeder asks you some questions. A good breeder will want to know if you have children at home, how old they are, if they have been exposed to dogs before. They could also ask about your environment and your experience with dogs. Finally, the breeder could also enquire about how you plan to train the dog. It is very important that both buyer and seller are on the same page before buying a Chihuahua .