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What to look for in a new puppy


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Hello! I am new to this group. I have a Cairn named Cooper. He is a neutered male. He will be a year old next month. I am looking at picking out a new female. I would like her confirmation to be correct. I am concerned about two things... Her and her brothers at six weeks all have front teeth showing, ever so slightly. Is that normal or is there a potential bite problem?

Also, I have been reading about the ear set. I have a pic of the parents. Both of their ears are erect, but are set out to the side. I'm not sure if it's an illusion, because their wire coat is smooth or what.

The pup is as cute as a button and her colors are beautiful. I just want to make sure her features are correct. Thank you!

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It is very difficult if not impossible to determine how a 6-7 week old pup is going to turn out. Your best bet is to look at the parents -are they from champion bloodlines? If they are, your odds of getting a well conformed pup increase. Most good breeders can sometimes tell the difference in a pet quality and show quality of the pup at an early age - others keep their pups for months to determine their quality. Best advice is to buy from a reputable breeder and not a pet shop - your odds of getting a healthy, good pup increases greatly. As far as the teeth showing a little bit, I can't recall a young pup showing that trait.

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Thank you for your reply. Choosing a pup is difficult, compounded by the fact I live in Missouri, the puppy mill capital of the world. :( I'm trying to balance a reputable breeder, with a price I can afford and a pup with good confirmation.

I would never buy from a pet store. I have visited many breeders and have passed up potential pups, once I realized it was a mill. This is a breeder of only Cairns and her breed stock are family pets. She has sent pictures of the parents, the pup I'm interested in and her brothers... The pup's brothers, not the breeder's. LOL!

Both parents have ears that are pointy, but wide set, not quite Yoda like, but more on the side of their heads as opposed to up high. My real concern are the teeth though, I can't tell from the picture, but I think momma might have bucked teeth. If that's the case, the apples may not fall far from the tree. :!:

I have three books here at home and I have studied the pictures until I'm blue in the face. My best bet is to take the pilgrimage to her house and get a look up close and personal.

I would appreciate any tips in picking the best pup possible and even things I should look out for.

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HI Maggie:

One thing to consider when looking at breeders. At the onset a breeder with a small breeding program for confirmation may be higher priced for the puppy- but if that breeder is screening for genetic disorders, you'll save money in the long run with a healthy dog. A breeder who knows their lines inside and out going back 5 generations or further can provide a very healthy pet quality dog.

Where as someone who is 'dabbling' in breeding is just really gambling- because they don't have the lines health history

Tracy, Amos, Walter, Brattwrust & Mettwurst a.k.a The Gremlins

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If you find a breeder that you are happy with and also happy with the pups this is what I recommend: Take one pup at a time to an isolated area away from its litter mates and mama. If its playful, attentive and shows no signs of shyness away fom mama and mates, it could be the one. Do this to each pup and then get more confused :lol: Good luck.

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I have been trying to get the avtar to receive my picture, but computers are not my thing. I did want to share my boy....



I want to extend a very warm thank you to those who gave me advice and those who just listened! :D

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I am so sorry for your experiance but good for you for doing your homework. Your perfect pup is put there, it just might take a while to find her. Best of luck to you!

We give dogs time we can spare, space we can spare and love we can spare. And in return, dogs give us their all. It's the best deal man has ever made.

-M. Acklam

Savannah's Dogster Page

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Wow- that poor puppy. Even I know that Cairn's with white on them are disqualified from the show ring. Sophie has a darling white blaze on her chest which should of disqualified her from any breeding, unfortunately it did not.

What an experience for you, and I am glad you didn't take a puppy that you were not satisfied with.

I was rather weirded out by the fact the female never let you touch her. Sophie is shaky about those things but has a lifetime of abuse to live down. I would be concerned about the puppies temperment with a nervous mother.



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not to stir it up, but i wouldnt buy from a breeder who would give you a great show potential pup over the phone and sign over breeding rights... sounds irresponsible on both sides... you can bet that a nice pup from good lines will not be that easy to pick up, and for you to state that you want to keep your options open to breed and sell registered pups doesnt sound right... showing and breeding are pretty big commitments, perhaps its better to figure out whether you want to, then look for a pup accordingly... a reputable 'show' breeder will not give away a prized pup on the chance that you might want the option to show... they breed to create champion show dogs this is their passion and reputation, pups in a litter that do not have the potential are sold as pets and they are great healthy loving animals...

good luck, i hope you find what you are looking for...


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Thank you for your replies! A and J I understand what you are saying and I agree... As my research has proven. Believe me I wouldn't breed unless I had a quality dog worth breeding.

I love puppies to pieces and have raised my fair share of abandoned litters. I like a magnet with "sucker" stamped on my forehead! ;) It's hard work and very expensive, especially when you formula feed a litter of seven! In addition to my passion, I cooperate with two agencies who assist with discounted spay and neutering. I have even tossed in to have a few special cases fixed.

I have never had a dog that was breed worthy, hence I have never bread. I would like to keep my options open, until I determine if faults or health problems exist.

Just to let everyone know my progress, we are going to look at a puppy today. She's adorable and I can't wait to meet her. I'll let you know how it goes! :D

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