Adopting a basset hound or any dog breed for that matter requires a lifetime commitment and loyalty. Part of the responsibility is to select one from a reputed breeder. Why get one from breeders? For one, breeders are committed to ensuring that the puppies that come from the litters are at their best of health. They are carefully chosen and bred from strong, healthy parents. They also make sure that they are there to help you even after you get puppies from them. But that’s just the start. Below, we will further discuss what you need to look for when it comes to choosing a professional breeder, plus some recommendations of the best basset hound breeders in the country.
What Makes A Breeder Reputed ?
Finding a good dog breeder is a daunting task. There are many things to consider when choosing a reliable breeder to buy your next family pet.
To know if the breeder you are eyeing is professional and one of the best in the country, ask these questions:
- DO THEY ENSURE THAT THE BASSET HOUND IS THE RIGHT BREED FOR YOU?
An expert breeder takes enough time to do background checks on their clients. They ascertain about lifestyle, schedule, likes and dislikes, preferences, and other relevant information that could help him or her understand if the family’s decision of choosing a basset hound over other breeds is the right choice. The more “grilled” you feel, the higher the chances that your breeder is serious about his or her job. A professional breeder’s aim is not to blindly conclude a purchase. His or her goal is to ensure that their puppies would go to families that can handle their personality and temperament. Therefore, they will not subject anyone to buyer’s remorse even if it means losing a potential customer. For passionate breeders, their puppies’ lifetime companion is more important than money.
This question is also essential to breeders who keep various breeds in their kennels. If they assess out that basset hounds are not the suitable breed for you, they would gladly recommend another breed that you would also like.
- ARE THEY WILLING AND AVAILABLE TO ACCOMMODATE YOUR QUESTIONS AND CONCERNS AS MUCH AS THEY COULD?
Part of the commitment of a passionate breeder is to be available to their clients for any concerns regarding the breed－even after the purchase. A committed breeder remains in touch with their clients to check on their puppy’s growth and development. They keep communication lines open for updates and questions.
Expert breeders do this not only to help their customers. It is also a way for them to see if there any mishaps or pertinent information that could further assist them in developing their own litters. For example, if they do find out that a puppy grew up with a unique characteristic, they could decide to breed that specific pup to propagate a stronger, better litter for their kennel.
- ARE THEIR KENNELS CLEAN AND WELL-MAINTAINED?
The appearance and cleanliness of the kennel speak about the professionalism of breeders. If they are clean, fresh, and suitable for dog rearing, then you are sure that he or she cares much about his or her litter, enough to keep them at the best living conditions. A clean kennel also means that the dogs and puppies kept in it are free or at least protected from diseases that can come from a dirty environment. If you are allowed to visit the kennel (certain breeders do not allow visitors to avoid introduction of pathogens in the place), check the overall appearance of the basset hounds. Are their fur coats glistening? Are their nails well-kept? Do they each have beds or a proper place to sleep on? Is there any food and fresh water available and accessible in the area? A professional breeder would gladly allow you to catch a glimpse of the dam who birthed your chosen basset pup to increase transparency and accountability further. The dam can give you first-hand proof that the puppy comes from a healthy, happy mom.
Also, ask the breeder for the number of times the dam gave birth to litters this year. Giving birth to 5-6 puppies can take its toll on the mother. That is why a professional breeders do not force dogs to breed more than once per two or three years.
- DO THEY KEEP UPDATED HEALTH RECORDS OF THEIR LITTER?
A professional breeder ensures that each pup that comes out of their kennel is in the best of health. This means that the litter is subjected to various tests, such as X-rays, routine check-ups, initial vaccination and deworming treatment, blood work, and other physical examinations.
A legitimate breeder would also be willing to let you get a second opinion and have your pup checked out at a vet of your choice just to verify the records he or she keeps. Some breeders, in fact, insist on it, even keeping it as one of the terms in their contract. They strictly ask the clients to visit a vet three days after they get a pup to ensure that it is safe and protected from all sorts of health issues.
- CAN THEY TELL YOU STRAIGHTAWAY ABOUT THEIR BREEDING PROGRAM?
Passionate breeders are proud of their respective breeding programs. Don’t feel offended if the breeder keeps on bragging about their champion bloodlines and if they repeat the history of their program over and over again. It takes decades to perfect such a program; it is their passion.
In fact, their pride could be a good indication that they are confident about the litters they produce. Good breeders are proud and unashamed to introduce and endorse their breed.
- DO THEY PROHIBIT YOU FROM TAKING THE PUP HOME UNTIL IT IS 8 WEEKS OR MORE?
An experienced breeder will NOT allow you to take home a pup that is less than eight weeks old. This is because the pup is still developing and learning how to socialize with animals and humans. Also, 8-week old pups are still dependent on their mothers for survival. Giving them to others earlier than that could result in a weak, and sad puppy.
- DO THEY ASK FOR A REASONABLE PRICE?
A basset hound pup typically costs around $1,600 to $6,000 depending on the bloodline. If it comes from champion parents, expect to pay more.
Breeding a purebred dog is not easy or cheap. It takes a lot of resources, not just financially but physically and mentally. But it is because of these efforts, plus their love and affection for the breed, that makes them extra careful in choosing the suitable family they will gladly give their puppies to.
Some breeders charge as low as $600, but you should be wary of them. Anything lower than that means that the basset hound comes from the puppy mill. People who run these mills do not care about the pup’s life, only on cash.
- DO THEY INSIST ON KEEPING A CONTRACT?
A contract is there not just to protect their interest but also to protect you. Experienced breeders ensure that a deal is signed and the terms of agreements are clear before any transaction starts.
One requirement in such contracts is the status of the pup in case the family does not want to keep it. A passionate breeder would gladly accept the return of the puppy regardless of the age. This shows how much the breeder cares more about the pup than the money.
- DO THEY GIVE THE BEST SEND-AWAY GIFTS AFTER PURCHASE?
A reputed dog breeder makes sure that with every purchase of a pup, there is a puppy packet attached to it. The puppy packet contains puppy food the animal loed to eat while under their care, a diet sheet, some instructions on how to housebreak the pup, the breeder’s contact information, plus, in some cases, a blanket or special item that the pup’s mom used to have to keep them comfortable while adjusting to the new home. As previously mentioned, experienced breeders would insist on getting information about the pup’s condition throughout the first few weeks of adoption. This exchange of info would continue until the puppy becomes an adult.
If you answered YES to all of these questions, then congratulations! The kennel you found is one of the top and reliable breeders out there.
Criteria For Judging Professional Basset Hound Breeders In The Country
In choosing the perfect breeders in the US, we followed these criteria:
AKC OR DOG BREED CLUB LISTING
The American Kennel Club is the most recognized kennel club in the US. To pass their standards, a breeder must figuratively go through the eye of a needle. This means that the requirements are a tad challenging to fulfill. Only renowned breeders would take the time and effort to be recognized by the club. Not to mention that there are other Hound Clubs that the breeders must satisfy to make themselves more credible to clients.
CONTACT INFORMATION AVAILABILITY
Aside from making their contact info available, this criteria would also include the accessibility and user-friendliness of their websites which we will link in the description.
HEALTH CERTIFICATES AND CLEARANCES
As previously mentioned, a reputed breeder would invest a lot of time, money, and effort to ensure that the pups they produce are healthy and free from genetic and infectious diseases. He or she must be transparent in giving out this information in their respective websites or social media pages.
Finally, the information they provide must be accurate, complete, and well-detailed as possible. Some breeders would even submit photos of their kennel, history of their breeding program, plus pictures of their past litters to help their clients further to decide if they want to avail of their pups.
As you can see, we didn’t include the price point. That is because we believe that if you want the best pup, you will invest your money in it. After all, breeding a purebred takes effort and A LOT of money.
#1 Elite Basset Hounds
Awarded as the “Best Basset Hound Breeders 2017” by Vetary.com, a team that searches and analyzes the most reputed basset hound breeders in the country, the Elite Basset Hounds are one of the most highly sought and accessible site out there. Their puppies are born, bred, and tested for any genetic diseases and other physical examinations. The pups, once purchased, comes with free pet insurance for one month, a GPS tracker, a microchip implant, and 10-year warranty (with limited conditions). Housebreaking and socialization training starts at six weeks old.
AKC or Dog Breed Club Listing: You can register their pups at AKC, UKC, APRI, and CKC. All are reputable dog breed clubs. They have no AKC Breeder of Merit.
Contact Info Availability: They have an email, contact number, and a live chat support on their website. Pretty cool! They also moderate a private Facebook group of past and potential clients as a way to address concerns and questions and to keep themselves updated about their previous litters.
Health Certificates and Clearances: They have certificates issued by a licensed vet. Both the dams and the sires are taken care of during the whole breeding program.
Information Dissemination: Their breeding program, prices, available prices, pre-order process, and contact information are available at their site.
Bonus! We love the fact that their website is very pleasing to the eyes. Plus, it’s easy to navigate so you surely won’t get lost. It shows that they care not just about their own pups but also to their potential clients, too.
#2 Huggable Bassets
Huggable Bassets is the home of the RusBud Champion bloodline, a family that starts with Rusty and Buddy, their two champion basset hounds. The litters that came from them is the current source of pride and joy of the kennel. These expert breeders are AKC and ACA registered so you can be sure about the authenticity of their pups. Each pup has initial vaccinations and deworming treatment, health certificates, a 5-day return policy if a health concern sprang up within that period, and a lifetime re-homing policy in case you changed your mind about the pup (but we hope not!).
AKC or Dog Breed Club Listing: All pups can be AKC and ACA registered. They have no stamp of AKC Breeder of Merit.
Contact Info Availability: You can find their email and contact number at their “Contact Us” page.
Health Certificates and Clearances: We couldn’t find a complete list of health clearances they give their pups. They did state that all litters have the latest vaccination and deworming treatment, one-year health guarantee, and a lifetime re-homing policy for families who are unable to keep their basset hounds.
Information Dissemination: They have relatively limited information about health clearances and such in their site. They do, however, provided photos of their ranch where their basset hounds reside.
Bonus! We love the fact that they are Paypal-certified! That means every transaction you make using your credit card is safe and secure since we all know that Paypal has strict guidelines when it comes to their merchants.
#3 Mountaineer Basset Hounds
This famous breeder started producing lovely pups when she got Chloe, her first dam. Since then, she grew her kennel into one of the most sought-after breeders today.
The Mountaineer Basset Hounds pride themselves in producing puppies that are house trained and socialized to interact both with adults AND children (her kids help with the process). That is why most families gladly get their furry pets from them.
Basset hound pups that come from their kennel comes with complete veterinary records and health certificates, prepaid microchip, a container of pet food the puppy eats while in the kennel, supplements, and a small token from the pup’s mother.
AKC or Dog Breed Club Listing: They have the seal of approval of the Basset Club of America, Inc, which may not be the same as AKC but is as recognized since the local dog breed club is recognized by the latter.
Contact Info Availability: They have an email address, contact number, and a home address you can access at their “Contact Us” page. They also have a Facebook group and a Twitter account. If you can, follow them!
Health Certificates and Clearances: They did not provide a complete list of clearances they provide for each pup. But they did mention that each litter has complete vaccination and deworming profile.
Information Dissemination: If you go past the clutter of their menu and the dizzy font style, you can find limited but enough information about their breeding program, sample contract, and payment information. They indicated the expected prices as well.
Bonus! We love the fact that they are transparent about their expectations when it comes to the families that will buy their pups. If you want to get one from them, requirements include a reference from a veterinarian that you are capable of keeping one, no criminal records, and no ownership of five or more dogs, among others.
Consequences If You Don’t Buy One From A Expert Breeder
There are a lot of risks involved if you choose to buy one from a sketchy breeder.
- You are not sure if the pup you purchased is healthy. Meaning, it is predisposed to certain diseases which could be avoided with a vet exam. This could result in skyrocketing vet fees once the illness springs up during growth.
- Some basset hound pups that come from backyard breeders or puppy mills exhibit behavior problems. They don’t like approaching people, are scared of being touched, and they cower in fear at any stimuli. You wouldn’t want that in your home, right?
- Some of them die as soon as you purchase them. These pups were stripped away from their mothers, sometimes as early as three weeks old. This makes them weak and sickly.
To avoid the burden of having to care for a pup with unknown origins, get them from a trusted breeder. Or better yet, visit a rescue group that specializes in keeping basset hounds. There are many pups out there who are looking for forever homes, and yours might be one of them.