We have a number of puppies attending puppy class at the moment with questionable temperament. My heart goes out to their owners who could have been spared the heartache of dealing with a potentially aggressive dog. All they needed to have done was a little homework, before purchasing the puppy. Every reactive puppy has at least one reactive parent.
It is essential that when you visit the breeder, you feel you would like to take the parents of the litter home with you. You should not feel nervous or uncomfortable around them. They should be healthy, clean, calm, friendly and confident. The dogs should be living as part of the family or at least with regular access to the family. Avoid any breeder who puts their adult dogs away when you arrive to see the puppies. The dogs obviously have temperament problems. Also be suspicious of any breeder who offers to deliver the puppy to you. You need to see the puppy in it’s home environment.
Early socialising is an essential factor to ensure that your puppy turns out balanced but it cannot make up for a poor start genetically. It also cannot undo the negative influence that a nervous bitch can have on her growing puppies.
For more information about choosing a puppy, click here.