It seems that the world is finally realizing something that Schnauzer breeders must face every day. Viral and bacterial infections are a risk. Parvo, Kennel Cough, and Canine Influenza are the main diseases that puppies can die from.
It is vital that we are aware of these diseases. We also set up systems to avoid taking risks. Here at Fernweh Schnauzers, we hear stories of breeders picking up diseases and losing whole litters of puppies. One of the big mistakes that many breeders make is focusing on selling puppies instead of protecting them from disease. Many breeders open their homes to both serious and not-so-serious buyers. They hope that they will be able to sell puppies at a young age before they finish proper vaccination protocols.
The problem with this, is that young, unvaccinated puppies are vulnerable to viral and bacterial diseases. To make matters worse, a virus like Parvo has an incubation period of up to 12 days. A puppy will often pick up Parvo at the breeder’s home, after being exposed to the many families handling them. After that, a family will take home a puppy that soon gets sick with a serious case of Parvo. Expensive vet bills and even death are realistic results in this type of situation.
We want to avoid this risk. So, Fernweh Schnauzers has chosen to commit to placing the health of our miniature schnauzer puppies ahead of sales. We feel that protecting our schnauzer puppies is our most important job. We ask all families to place a $300 deposit before visiting any of our puppies. This policy divides the serious adopters from families that just want to fill a day. Since creating this policy, we have been able to reduce the foot traffic within our home by more than 100%. That creates a much safer home for our puppies. Upon visiting our home, adopters can see any fully vaccinated miniature schnauzer puppy for sale. We also do personality testing. That helps us pick miniature schnauzer puppies that would be a good fit for each family.
As responsible miniature schnauzer breeders, we choose health over sales. We believe that a strong breeding program requires planning rather than simply focusing on selling puppies. Maybe, over time, more breeders will take this approach and resist the appeal of selling their puppies at all costs.