What a fun subject for a first blog post!
This week I've had to make the difficult, heart-wrenching decision to re-home my show dog, Tundra, who has been a doted on part of our family since we got him as a puppy 2.5 years ago
For the last couple of days most of my time has been spent answering emails & evaluating potential homes for him. There are many who look promising so that is encouraging. But today's post isn't about the process of selecting the perfect home. It's about the perception of a retired show/breeding dog who is being offered to a new family.
I have had SO many comments or emails implying that Tundra is "in need" or needing "adopting" or other rescue keywords. This is a very strange point of view to me!! Yes, the dog is available to the perfect home - that does not mean he is being discarded to the first bleeding heart. A show dog is still a thoughtfully bred, carefully raised & much-loved dog. He has always been fed ultra-premium dog food, his coat & nails have always been maintained, he's seen the vet when needed & most importantly he has been part of the family.
This is not what I would class as a rescue or even a dog that needs adopting. A dog that is "in need" or "up for adoption" is a dog that doesn't have many options left, such as a dog needing a lot of behavioural rehabilitation, ongoing medical attention or a dog in the pound with 24 hours to find a home. They are the dogs who need someone wanting to offer a dog "in need" a home! They are no less deserving of a home than a show dog but unfortunately their circumstances have left them harder to home.
When a show dog becomes available, it is actually a rare opportunity to purchase a stunning, healthy, pedigree dog with a wonderful temperament that someone will be very privileged to own.
At the end of the day, if you are looking for a dog, you need to take into account what kind of dog would suit your home. If you are up to the challenge and don't have preference for much besides size & approximate activity level, a rescue dog is probably fine for you. But if you have certain characteristics you want in a dog (and appearance can be one of them!), there is nothing wrong with wanting to buy a well-bred, pedigree dog from a registered, ethical breeder.
But please, don't refer to our dogs as "in need". They are anything but!
Diana is an Exhibitor & Registered Breeder of Australian Shepherds in the Eastern Wheatbelt of Western Australia. She is married to a farmer and owned by 3 loving Aussies.