This post is a reply to this previous post from FYEAHSHIBAINU.
If you’re looking to add a shiba to your family, in addition to using services like petfinder.com, we strongly urge you to check out shiba rescues. There are a lot of shibas out there that need new homes. In addition, wanting a puppy is not a good excuse for not looking through shiba rescues: it’s not uncommon for a rescue to have dogs under a year old that are available for adoption.
Here’s a pretty comprehensive list of shiba rescues on the web:
If you do decide to use a breeder, it is very important that you go to a reputable breeder. On the internet, it’s really easy to be duped into thinking a backyard breeder or a puppy mill is a quality breeder. Here’s a recent story from tumblr blog A Panicky Shiba about problems with a non-reputable Shiba breeder: my dealings with RightPuppy Kennel. [Note: while it may be surprising, it’s not uncommon for reputable breeders to be cheaper than irresponsible breeders, puppy mills, & pet stores].
So, how do you make sure your breeder is reputable? The first thing you need to do is read the checklist How to Spot a Responsible Breeder from Jenna & Snickers. It’s full of great tips and warnings, as well as ways to find a responsible breeder. [Update: Also see the House of Two Bows’ ‘A Hypothetical Puppy Search in Seven Steps: Internet Tools to Evaluate a Breeder’. It’s an excellent resource!]
After reading that, you’ll most likely want to start searching at the National Shiba Club of America, which is the shiba club for the AKC. The website has a list of regional clubs (which you can call to find reputable breeders), as well as a directory of breeders that have agreed to abide by the clubs’s code of ethics. This list, National Shiba Club of America Breeder Directory, is likely the safest breeder directory that you can find.
So, if you decide a shiba is the right dog for you and you’re looking to add one to your pack, we sincerely hope you’ll look at rescues first (after all, taro the shiba is a rescue alumnus of SIRA). However, if you do go with a breeder, please be careful and responsible in choosing a quality breeder.
Great post on From the House of the Fox Dogs: ’You Get What You Pay For (A Lesson on Choosing a Dog Breeder)’. It’s a lesson on how to choose a breeder, how to educate yourself, and how a ‘bargain dog’ can cost you more down the road.
Also via From the House of the Fox Dogs, this post on DogPlay.com provides a pretty definitive checklist you need to go through before buying a dog. This will help ensure the breeder you are choosing is humane and responsible, as well as help protect you from the negative aspects of adopting a dog from an irresponsible breeder.
Via Masakado Shiba Inu/Too Naughty Shibas: ‘What Constitutes a Puppy Mill?' This post provides a very helpful list of signs of an unethical breeder/puppy mill/dog farm.