Hold on. Before we start, let me paint the picture for you…
Winding country roads, lost cell phone signal, sun shining down onto the corn fields on all sides, the windows rolled down or else the anticipation would break the glass itself. After an hour of just that, we finally arrived at the dog breeder’s home.
When we stepped out of the car, we were greeted by TEN adult dogs freely roaming the 3 acres of beautiful country land. The dogs were a mix of colors, shapes, sizes but one thing they all shared was the calm, loving temperament that is expected in the golden retriever breed.
We were not disappointed.
Meeting the parents
The dog breeder did a great job at providing all the information we needed and answered every question without us even having to ask. We did have to stop (and physically pick ourselves up off the ground and pause from rolling around in the grass with the dogs) and remember why were here. Puppy! But before we saw the litter, we had to stop and meet the adorable parents.
Cue beautiful golden girl with light fur running across the grass in slow mo, tongue flopping from side to side. Okay, maybe I was the one running like that but details don’t matter…
We obviously had our favorites from the pack of goldens that greeted us. Lucky for us, the favorites happened to be the parents of the litter we’re getting.
Nala (calm, light coloring, proud mommy) and Paws (fluffy box head, wants your attention, NEEDS your attention.)
Nala couldn’t wait to lead us into the kennel to show off her new creation. Paws guarded the door and required we pet him before entering, which we were happy to do.
How do you choose your puppy?
So. This is the hard part I suppose.
Inside the kennel were seven puppies; five boys, two girls. At three and half weeks, they were super tiny as expected. Originally we thought we’d be picking out our future puppy but the breeder told us it would be hard to connect at such a young age when they weren’t fully developed just yet. That didn’t stop us from having to hold every single one! And now we know what we’re up against when we come back out in a week and a half to pick.
We expressed our concern of not being able to pick a puppy because its just so hard. The breeder told us that’s okay because we WON’T be picking her.
She’ll be picking us.Once she said those words, my entire perspective changed. I was able to focus less on “which one is right for me” and more on “which one am I right for?” It is like a being on a dating website except nothing similar about the two things at all.
Choosing your breeder
Choosing your puppy really is the last step in a long process before it becomes real. But before choosing your puppy, you have to choose your breeder. And that takes research and time.
There are the obvious places you will want to avoid like puppy mills or pet stores. But like everything in life, for the bad there is also the good. And we believe we’ve stumbled upon one of the good.
The dog breeder we have selected is in this business for all the right reasons. For the last 30 years, she has been breeding golden retrievers and helping families become whole. One thing she said to us is that this dog will be your future children’s dogs. With that being said, it is important to remember that getting a dog is a commitment. If you want a dog, want one for a year at least before making the decision to get one. And do your research.
We were able to see the blood line of dogs (mom, dad, grandparents) right there on the farm. The dogs live a happy, healthy life with lots of love and lots of furry friends to play with.
At the end of the day, this didn’t feel like we were setting out to go pick up a new toy. It felt like we were meeting the newest member of our family.