Highland Elkhound Policies
Pet versus Show
We only consider doing a breeding if we feel it will make a positive contribution to the Elkhound breed (temperament, health, structure, and following the type intended of the their use as Moosedogs). If you are interested in showing, please contact me for further information. The majority of our puppies go to pet homes. This does not necessarily mean they are not of show quality or that they wouldn’t finish their championship.
When you are added to our waitlist, you may request male or female and I encourage you to share information about your household that will help us match the best puppy to you (ie, children in your household, level of outdoor activity, etc). We do not have you come pick a puppy from the litter – your puppy will be chosen for you ahead of time to provide the best match. We have lived with the puppies since birth and have had a chance to observe their temperaments and interactions with other puppies and people. All the puppies will probably look the same to you when you show up to take your puppy home – they are all cute! We post pictures of the puppies every week from the day they are born. You will be tempted to ask which one we have in mind for you, but we will not make this final decision until the pups are 8-9 weeks old.
A note about choosing a male or female: if this will be your only dog and you are flexible about sex of the puppy, you are more likely to be able to get a puppy from the first available upcoming litter. I have averaged only about 1 litter every two years, but there are many factors involved in how soon my next litter will be (and how big the waitlist is already). Neutered males make excellent pets (and typically we have more males available). If you already have a dog, often a dog of the opposite sex is a good choice.
All dogs used for breeding have their hips (OFA and/or PennHip) and eyes (CERF) tested.
After initial contact, we will likely have quite a few questions for each other. Once you are added to the waitlist, your spot is held without a deposit until I have an ultrasound of the mother showing that she is pregnant. At that time, I request a deposit of $100 to hold your place. If the litter is not big enough for you to get a puppy or the sex you want is not available, I will refund your deposit.
Puppy prices for a given litter vary depending on the parents. I can give you an estimate prior to a breeding and a firm number once the parents are decided.
Our contract includes details on refunds for health issues and a spay/neuter clause for pets. Email me for a sample contract. I can also provide references of previous puppy buyers upon request.
Our puppies are whelped in our house (in our kitchen alcove) and are handled frequently every day. They will have met kids, men, women, other dogs, walked on a variety of indoor and outdoor surfaces and be very familiar with the noises of family life. Once they are old enough, they go on trips outside and for walks with me in a large fenced yard with lots of things to explore. You will begin potty training once you take them home, but their areas are kept clean and they are encouraged to do their business on newspaper (when they are little and inside all the time) or grass as they get older.
Bringing Your Puppy Home
You will be able to pick up your puppy after they are 9 weeks old. We keep them until this age so that they have had two sets of their puppy vaccinations and have developed some immunity. If you need to have your puppy shipped to you, arrangements will be made for the most direct flight possible (contact me for more details on shipping). We’ll send home with you the following items for your puppy:
- AKC registration paperwork
- Signed contract
- Vaccination record
- Information about care of your puppy
- Small bag of food (with instructions to switch your puppy over to a different food if necessary); we feed our own dogs a raw diet, but feed the puppies a mix of raw and a high grade commercial chow since most of owners will prefer to feed chow
When you come to pick up your puppy, you may wish to bring along:
- A leash
- Crate for the car ride (and/or a friend/relative to ride along with you)
- A toy (we can put it with the puppies while we talk and do paperwork so it picks up the scent of your puppy’s brothers and sisters)
We like to keep track of how our puppies are doing at their new homes. We encourage you to stay in touch (and we love pictures!) with updates and any questions you have.