Breeder Comparison Matrix

 This is just a general listing.  Some breeders shade between two or more categories.



Backyard Breeder

Puppy  Mill


Hobby   Breeder

Reputable Experienced Breeder

Has a specific breeding goal

To produce puppies

To make money

To supply the demand

To better the breed

To perfect a specific type to leave a legacy.

Belongs to and works with breed club

May masquerade as a member

Hardly ever

Has a network of business contacts

Extremely dedicated

Very active, generally an officer

Has at least one mentor

Works independently, lacks guidance

Not interested in breed improvement

Does not specialize in specific breed

Invites knowledge

Is a mentor, writes books/articles, conducts seminars

Understands and breeds to the standard

May not even know what it is.

Uses any available stock.

Focuses on general appearance

Strives towards the ideal

Often helps to define it.

Active in dog related activities (shows, trials, rescues)

Often rescues only to attain more stock. Rarely attends shows or trials

Does not need to promote establishment; sells to brokers--pet shops, etc.

Does not need to promote establishment, sells to brokers, pet shops etc.

Shows and trials to prove worth  Shows & trials to objectively test breeding stock.

Often judges, provides seminars, writes articles, and willingly mentors serious Hobby Breeders.

Knows the true history of the breed

May share false/incomplete info

Often pretends to know some.

Claims that it's not important.

Studies continuously

Impacts the breed for many decades

Sells pets with spay/neuter contract and tries to stay in touch with new owners

May charge more for "breeding" papers

Often issues papers via generic "registries"

All pups sold have full breeding rights.

Yes, and diligently follows up on progeny

Always differentiates breed/pet quality and insists on frequent updates

Keeps up with health and  temperament  issues affecting the breeding and provides in depth guarantees

May refuse to acknowledge most problems. Considers shows and trials as too "political".

No need to, mostly supplies brokers and pet shops

Meets minimum standards as required by state law.

Goes above and beyond standard requirement

Maintains a solid support system --accepts  full responsibility for  every puppy produced

All breeding stock is tested for  genetic diseases affecting the particular breed.

Some occasionally may be to impress consumers.

Only as demanded by consumers -- may give papers as proof of quality.

May provide undocumented paperwork for appearances sake.

Intensive testing always a priority

Often initiates club sponsored seminars and clinics.

Maintains carrier records on all dogs in
gene pool including effected progeny.

Focuses mostly on phenotype--unfamiliar with genotype.

Often supplies broker and pet shops, records unavailable.

Dogs and puppies are often auctioned off in lots, records unavailable

Attempts to continuously track every puppy produced

Bases entire breeding program on extensive gene pool data.

Clean, sterile environment always maintained

Conditions may vary greatly depending on available income.

Often tries to maintain minimum  standards

Cleanest and best organized; state inspected

Usually "home raised with love" and well cared for.

Often cluttered but
always healthy and
mentally stimulating

Expected longevity with any particular breed

Unrealistic expectations-- easily  disillusioned.

Will continue as long as the sales are coming

Depends on popularity of specific breeds

On a mission--plans to stay for the long haul.

Involved with the breed/  breeding for decades--makes a lifetime commitment.