So you don't want papers?

You have seen, in the article entitled “Why are bulldogs so expensive”, the dollars, sweat & tears that go into raising a litter of puppies.  Now take what you have learned, and apply it to the “purebred but not registered” subject.

First of all the Canadian Livestock Act states that registration papers MUST be supplied FREE for any animal that is being represented as “purebred”.  In addition it costs UNDER $100 to register a puppy if you do it in a timely manner.  (Check it out at the Canadian Kennel Club website , if you don't believe me).  So anyone who offers to take off more money than that …….why?  It sure ain't out of the goodness of their heart.

Litter registration with the Canadian Kennel Club can be as little as $20.  Individual registration is $16 if it's done promptly and correctly.  So why do you think someone would NOT register their dog if they've gone to all that work?  Where do you think they cut back on their costs?  Do you really want to know?  I shudder to think.

Let's assume that you decide to purchase that bargain basement, “purebred but not registered” puppy.  Let's also assume that it IS in fact a purebred.  You won't likely know for sure until it grows up, and maybe it won't look much like a purebred at that time.  But then you didn't pay much, and all puppies are cute, right?

One reason they don't register the puppies could be they told their breeder that they were only wanting a pet, so didn't want to buy the right to breed the dog, paid less and promised to spay or neuter the puppy.  The breeder retained the registration papers in the breeder's name, rather like the registration on your car, until that puppy was spayed or neutered.  So they didn't ever get the papers.  Basically the spay or neuter was PART of the purchase agreement, just like the payment.  So by not fulfilling their end of the bargain, it's like not completing the purchase.  They don't own the breeding rights.  They may not even legally own the dog UNLESS it is spayed or neutered. 

And it might not be their dog.  It could be someone's lost pet, or stolen.  Who's to know?  They certainly don't have the papers for it.  Would you buy a car without the registration papers?

Now this is the most important point of why you must really think about this subject .  In case you didn't know; bulldogs have a high incidence of birth defects.  It's simply part of the breed.  So we must be very careful with each and every litter we breed.  If we have a defective puppy in the litter, we NEVER breed any of the healthy puppies from that litter.  We also never breed the mother to the father again.  And, if it happens more than once, we spay or neuter one or both parents.  The problem could very well be genetic.  The healthy puppies are perfect in every way except that they carry that horrible gene.  We would sell that puppy as a pet in good conscience, but only to someone who doesn't want to breed it, or says they don't want to breed it.  But what happens if someone scams us, buys a puppy with a defect and breeds it?

We know for a fact this is happening with one of our puppies right now .  It came from a litter that had a horrible genetic defect.  Every surviving puppy was sold as PET ONLY .  One buyer said their puppy would never be bred, but now we've heard that he's looking for someone to breed his “purebred but unregistered” dog to.  That puppy could be the father or mother of your “purebred but unregistered” puppy.  Lucky you.  You saved how much?  Do you think you will have that puppy replaced if it's defective?  Their health guarantee is probably worth about as much as the papers they don't bother with either.

So you look at the ethics of the “purebred but unregistered” breeder.  Do you really want to trust that kind of person?  Think about it.  Chances are someone did trust them.  Once.  Find out where they got their breeding dog from if you are thinking about buying an unregistered puppy.  Check it out.

Sometimes the “purebred but unregistered” puppy is an import.  Unscrupulous characters buy puppies, in bulk, from 3 rd world countries, where labor costs are very inexpensive.  These “Puppy Brokers” pose as Breeders and place ads to sell these less expensive puppies on-line and in local papers.  Sadly, they sell these puppies very quickly, and are gone before the puppies start to get sick.  We recently received an e-mail from a lady who bought one of these inexpensive imported puppies, and has spent over $7,000 in vet bills since she got him.  He's not even a year old yet, and she will continue to spend her money on her much loved dog with genetic defects, for the rest of his life.  Am I the only one who sees the irony in this “inexpensive” puppy?

Bottom line, add up the costs to raise a bulldog puppy.  Do you honestly think we could do that for $1,000 for a puppy?  Would you go through all that work for $1,500 per puppy?   How much seems reasonable?  Our vet bill is more than some people make in a year.  We put our hearts into this, just to have people think we are greedy.  The $2,500 we charge is for a PET puppy, not a breeding puppy.  Do you think it's easier to raise a pet puppy than a show or breeding puppy?  Do you think that it costs less to raise one with perfect little roll-back ears, than one with stick-up, or flop down ears? 

Sometimes a responsible breeder will have problems with getting papers for a particular dog.  The registering body can be very sticky, and problems can arise.  It is rare, but that breeder will not discount hundreds of dollars for that puppy.  Its quality is the same as the papered ones, the costs were the same, and most of all the breeder's name & guarantee still stands behind it.  If you are dealing with a respected breeder, and you have checked him or her out thoroughly , then you can quite confidently buy without papers.  But DO YOUR HOMEWORK .  Don't do it to save a buck or it'll bite you in the butt.

If it comes down to the money, then you should take a look at the life that you live.  If you can't afford to pay for a registered bulldog, can you afford to take care of it if it gets very, very sick? What if it gets hit by a car?  If you can't afford to pay $2,500 for the pet, what will happen to that beloved pet if it needs $2,500 in vet bills?  It's simple, if you can't afford a bulldog, you can't afford a bulldog .

Bulldogs are not the breed for everyone.  They certainly are not.  When you see one at the park, or walking down the street, they mean something to people who know what goes into breeding them.  A Bulldog demands a lifestyle and financial commitment like no other breed.  They are the living representation of mega vet bills, lots of hard work, lost sleep, and loads of tears; both happy and sad.  And the people walking with, and loving those dogs like to think they have earned them by working hard at what they do to earn the money to buy one.  They like to think they deserve a bulldog. 

Call it a status symbol if you want to, but I would like to think that I sell my puppies to that kind of person, NOT to one that will cheat and buy a “purebred but unregistered” dog.   Like anything in life worth having… a bulldog is worth working hard for.  Long live those who believe hard work brings rewards…. such as a REGISTERED bulldog.


Now you know.  Make your own decision.


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