A Guardian home is a permanent home for one of our breeding girls or boys. Guardian homes allow us to expand our breeding program by placing them in these loving homes so they can be a member of a family rather than being in a kennel.
Guardian families get the "pick of the litter" while we retain the breeding rights for a specified period of time. After the breeding period is over, they are spayed/neutered and the dog will be the Guardian family's forever pet. We believe that all dogs deserve to be part of their own family and never housed outdoors or in kennels. Because we do not have a kennel based program we simply can not house all the puppies/dogs that we would like to keep as part of our breeding program. We want our dogs to have the best and in turn our customers will have a happy, healthy and well socialized puppy. In order to give our breeding dogs the very best life possible, it is important to limit how many dogs we personally keep and house BUT also we understand that in order to breed the highest quality dogs, which is our MAIN GOAL, we also need to keep, evaluate, and ADD quality bloodlines to our breeding program. So, how is all of this going to be possible?
For us and many like us the answer is a Guardian Program. Our Guardian Dog program allows us and other dog breeders like us to expand our dog breeding program with pride and helps us to breed the very highest quality puppies the right way. Out of kennels and in loving homes.
As a Guardian home, you get a free puppy/dog and the dog stays with you as your family dog for the life of the dog. We co-own the dog and retain breeding rights for a certain amount of litters starting at sexual maturity and ending at retirement from our breeding program. Each guardian dog contract is unique but generally male dogs are contracted for a period of time rather than a number of litters and for females it's usually for 6 litters depending on what we're trying to accomplish with that particular female, how well she reacts to being a mother, and the puppies she produces. I usually will breed them back to back twice so they may retire early, unless our vet recommends differently or timing doesn't work out for me (overlapping litters, etc). The contract may be extended (very rare) if both the guardian and we agree to it, or shortened if we decide no more litters are desired out of the girl.
Our guardians are responsible for the dog’s regular health maintenance: veterinary care including annual exams, rabies vaccines, heartworm and flea and tick preventative, grooming, food, etc. We pay for genetic health testing required for breeding, and all breeding related expenses for the entire duration of the contract. Once the dog has passed their genetic health testing she/he is added to our breeding program. We decide when she will be bred and to whom she will be bred too, she stays with her guardian family during her pregnancy (63 days) and then is returned to us at about a week before her due date to deliver (whelp) and then raise her puppies. Once her puppies are weaned (approx. 6 weeks) she is returned to her guardian family.
Guardians of females are required to alert us to when their girl is coming into season, and make her available to us for the breeding process. Approximately one week prior to whelping, the girl will come to our home for delivery and care of her pups. Once the pups are weaned (approx. 6 weeks) the female can go back to her guardian home. The Guardian families and breeder will discuss visitation based on whats best for the new mom. Some moms love seeing their family and do well with the separation after visiting Other moms can get stressed which is certainly not good for her health or the health of the puppies. Guardian families are always notified when labor begins and are welcome to quietly observe labor and delivery, and sometimes may even help, again depending on the female.
When the dog is older and completes his/her breeding obligations, the dog is spayed/neutered and continues to enjoy the wonderful life you have provided for him/her since puppyhood and the contract will be fulfilled.
There are many things that Guardian families need to consider. Guardians of females sometimes have to deal with several heat cycles and keeping their girl protected from unwanted males. The Guardian family will need to learn the signs of a heat cycle and be willing to communicate, cooperate and coordinate with us to ensure a successful breeding. Our Guardian Families get to enjoy the excitement of being part of our unique breeding program and seeing the offspring of their dog be placed with some really amazing families across the country, bringing others the same happiness that they've received from their Guardian Dog! Watching your dog become a mom or dad, watching their puppies grow up and getting to hear the stories from their families and how much joy they've brought into their lives.
This is not the "Get a free dog program". This is a big emotional commitment. Please think it through before you apply!
Qualifying to be a Guardian Home:
Guardians must have previous dog experience
Guardians must keep the dog on a leash or in a fenced area AT ALL TIMES
Guardians must be willing to train the dog the very basic obedience commands (off, down, sit, back, leave it, crate)
Guardians must ensure the puppy is socialized to adults, children and other animals - SUPER IMPORTANT
Guardians must provide appropriate veterinary or emergency care when needed
Guardians must feed the dog the food and supplements approved by the breeder
Guardians must be able and willing to identify and notify us immediately when a female begins her heat cycle
Guardians must not allow a female in heat near intact males
Guardians must not allow a male guardian to breed with any dog other than breeder approved dogs
Guardians must live within a reasonable driving distance from our home, typically about 10 miles
Guardians must communicate, cooperate and coordinate with the breeder any breeding related activities
The Guardian Home program is actually a very simple program even though it may seem like there are a lot of details. The main thing to remember is, if we as humans truly reject the idea of puppy mills, then to our knowledge there is no better way than the guardian home program to help reputable breeders continue to breed dogs in a humane and loving environment and out of cages. So in order to continue to produce HAPPY and HEALTHY puppies for families who are looking for a forever pet or are in need of a service dog, we have adopted this wonderful program and it has worked very well for many experienced breeders and the families involved.
There are 5 steps to becoming a Guardian home:
Application, Telephone Interview, Veterinary/Reference Check, Home Visit, and Puppy/Dog Matching. If you're interested in becoming a Guardian home, please fill out our Guardian Home application below. Guardian home applicants are screened intensely and therefore we do not process them until we have the adequate time available to do so fully. We ask that you allow up to 10 days from the receipt of your application for processing, although we try our best to respond within one week.
Guardian Home Program Basics