Ready to Add a Pointer to Your Home? 

Learn how to begin your search for a responsible breeder and inform yourself about what questions to ask ensuring you find the best fit for you and your family.

Why Purebred?

Pointer adult and puppyThere are a number of reasons why adding a purebred dog to your home is beneficial.  You have the advantage of predicting your dog’s size, care requirements, and temperament, and can research a breed that fits your lifestyle and personality.  Purchasing a Pointer from a responsible breeder means obtaining a puppy whose natural instincts, temperament, and size have been expertly maintained through generations of careful breeding.

Responsible Breeders

When you find a responsible Pointer breeder, you begin a relationship that continues for the rest of your dog’s life.  Responsible breeders carefully research the dogs behind each dog that they breed. They make careful choices to be sure that the temperament and physical characteristics of the puppy’s parents compliment each other, and that they are in good health.

During your search for a breeder, be sure to look for someone who treats their dogs like members of their family.  Your breeder should always be willing to answer questions, give advice, and receive updates on your dog.

It is a good idea to ask a potential breeder what their goal is for a particular litter.  For example, sometimes a breeder might select parents who both have strong hunting lines. The puppies from this particular litter might best be suited for active homes or families who plan on hunting with their dog.  Or, a breeder might choose dogs who have show lines or obedience titles in their history, meaning that their puppies might be suited for a variety of either companion or show homes.

Be prepared for breeders to ask you about yourself and your lifestyle.  It is the goal of a responsible breeder to place each of their puppies in a home where they will thrive and have a long, fulfilling life.  Be honest with your breeder about what your expectations are for your dog so that they can help you find the puppy best suited to your family.

Pointers_with_girlsBreeders should have already started a socialization program for their puppies, so that you are able to pick up where they left off.  Puppies from responsible breeders should have had lots of individual attention as well as active play. They should have been exposed to new experiences outside the breeder’s home, such as car rides and vet visits, with people of different ages and appearances.

Breeders should be involved with and willing to introduce you to the Pointer community, so that you can take advantage of participating in breed events and meet other Pointer owners.  When you add a Pointer to your family, you are joining a community of dog owners with a long history of which the American Pointer Club is very proud! American Pointer Club members are willing to help new owners with their dogs, whether it be providing advice about general care and training, to getting started with club activities.

Responsible Pointer breeders should provide you with a written contract upon sale of your puppy, outlining health information, vaccine history, and more.  Generally, breeders stipulate that if you cannot keep your dog for any reason during its lifetime, that they will take the dog back. This support provides peace of mind to new owners in the event that their circumstances ever change.

Why AKC Titled Parents?

Why should a new Pointer owner look for a dog whose parents possess AKC titles?  Even if your dog is simply going to be a companion, there are a few reasons to consider the significance of titled parents.  When getting a dog that is registered with AKC, the registration certificate reflects the breeders’ representation that the dog is purebred, with two parents that are Pointers.

Titled dogs in a Pointer’s background reflect a level of commitment by your dog’s breeder and previous breeders to uphold and maintain certain qualities the club and breeder believes to be important. Titled dogs require their owner or handler to commit an extensive amount of training time.  To earn titles, a dog must be recognized by at least 3 judges, aka dog experts, as meeting a prescribed set of quality standards for looks and structure or performance and trainability.  Therefore, the titles provide a more objective evaluation of a dog than just a breeder’s own representations of the merits of a dog’s parents.

What does this mean for you?  

Another level of confidence that the dog you add to your family will be able to fulfill all the goals you have for it, from a well adjusted pet to hunting partner to obedient companion for family outings, and much more.

Field Pointer WorkingWhen you inquire about a litter and get a pedigree from the breeder, don’t hesitate to ask what the letters in front of or behind a dog’s name stand for.   Those are the titles. Most breeders love to fill you in on the special qualities they were looking for when they selected those two parents to bring a litter of puppies into this world.  For example, a breeder might select a sire with a confirmation title and a dam with a hunting title, with a goal of producing puppies who possess a combination of both these valued traits.  When you purchase a dog from a responsible breeder with titled dogs, the money that you spend on your puppy is supporting your breeder’s continued advancement of the breed.

Important Health Information

Pointers are a healthy and hardy breed of dog.  The American Pointer Club is a member of the Canine Health Information Center, a health database.  Before Pointers can be CHIC-certified, breeders submit hip and thyroid evaluations from the Orthopedic Foundation for Animals (OFA) and an eye clearance from the Canine Eye Registry Foundation (CERF).  Breeders must agree to have all test results, both positive and negative, in the CHIC database. Responsible breeders screen their breeding dogs for genetic diseases, and breed only dogs who are in sound health.

Six Week Pointer PuppiesIt is important to find a Pointer breeder who shares all the health information about their dogs with prospective puppy buyers.  Not all health issues can be detected or predicted by a test (for example, food or skin allergies, epilepsy) , so it is important to ask your breeder about any problems that are present in your puppy’s parents and grandparents.