I am a Breeder... the joys and disappointments - author unknown
I AM A BREEDER...
My dog food bill each month is the average person’s monthly mortgage payment and I am lucky just to have a few groceries in my cupboards. My electric has tripled and I have more whelping supplies than I do my own medicine and first aid supplies. I have vaccines in my fridge, my vet on speed dial, and multiple puppy crates in my living room. My life revolves in every way, around my dogs.
I am a Breeder, who when my fridge died, I saved the dog meds and let the food go bad. I check on my puppies first thing in the morning and they are my last stop before bed. While my friends are on a cruise to the Bahamas and my family meets for Christmas, I am home delivering or hand feeding puppies. All my plans are made around heat dates, whelp dates, puppies going to their new homes and vet dates. I have not had a real vacation in over 15+ years and honestly don’t mind.
I am a Breeder, who has been covered in more bodily fluids, pee, poop, and puke from my dogs on more occasions than I care to admit. Bleach is my favorite cleaning product and my home typically smells like a community swimming pool. Most of the time my conversations with friends revolves around my dogs. When I get exhausted and feel like I can't do another sleepless night hand feeding a puppy around the clock every 2 hours, I remind myself religiously that the hand feeding is only temporary and the reward is coming.
I am Breeder who sacrifices my own comfort to sleep on the floor next to a whelping pen, waiting patiently for new puppies to arrive. I usually have a peanut butter and jelly sandwich in one hand and a newborn puppy in the other during whelping. Yuck, right? I also jump every time I hear a puppy making a squeak and set my alarm so that I do not over sleep and for the next 2 hour puppy feeding. Many people wouldn't understand how it feels to have invested hours and hours in a weak puppy to ultimately lose it. It isn’t quite comparable to losing a child, but it is very devastating in it’s own right. I’ve lost a child, so it’s that much more difficult for me to process. Of course, there is the joy I feel when all the invested hours have paid off in one that lives.
I am a Breeder, who has bottle fed, syringe and even sponge fed a puppy doing whatever it takes feeding every 2 hours and it taking 45 minutes to do it for weeks at a time to ensure it's survival. I am proficient at vaccinations, sub- q fluids, syringe feeding, warm water enemas, temperature taking, and formulated my own puppy formula. I have my own expensive emergency puppy equipment, like a puppy ICU unit, ultrasound machine, nebulizer, and oxygen concentrator, needed to help the survival of my puppies. My Vet knows me by my first name, and has witnessed me cry countless times.
I am a Breeder, to me the 63 days for gestation takes on new meaning and I still excited by every new life. I deliver my pups, with towels and heating pads ready, and with happiness and sadness sometimes intermingled. I am the one who has breathed the first breath of life into a puppy who refused to take that first breath. Even though it increases my work load, I look forward to the 14 day stage when eyes and ears open, and puppies begin to emerge from the helplessness of newborns. My payment for this is the pleasure of smelling puppy breath, hearing a first bark or silly growl, and each puppy’s exploration of their surroundings. I am a conscientious lover of animals and I have found my niche in this world.
I am a Breeder, and I am not cruel, dumb, uncaring or criminal. I take great responsibility for every life I bring into this world and ensure it goes to a wonderful, loving and perfect home an extension of the same love and care they received while in my own home. Despite common assumptions, I am not raking in money while sitting on my butt. Every penny I receive for my puppies through blood, sweat, hard work and tears, goes right back into care for all of my other dogs. It pays for adult’s health testing, veterinary care, dog food, whelping supplies, and more.
I am a Breeder, my greatest joy is a healthy puppy and finding a wonderful home for them. The emails or texts that I receive of puppy pictures with their new families are the fringe benefits of my efforts. I look forward to checking my emails every day to see if a family has sent photos.
I am also Human. I make mistakes and I take full responsibility for them. I can only do the best I can when planning a litter. But LIFE happens. Just like with a child growing up, you never know if something will happen. I have no control over genetics, despite all of the testing we do. But SHIT happens. I own it. I dont pass the buck. I do not have a crystal ball and cannot foresee the life my puppies will ultimately live, but I pray that they all live long and healthy lives with the ones they love and love them back. I hope everyone taking one of my babies home, knows that I did the best I could to provide them with a healthy puppy.
I am here for you, through the good and bad. I can offer advice and lend an ear. I am not one of those breeders, to when you walk out that door with a puppy, that you are on your own. I am here for the life of my baby. Through the good and bad. Thank you for trusting me with providing you with a new life to add to your family.