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Dr. Kara
Dr. Kara, Board Certified Veterinarian
Category: Vet
Satisfied Customers: 18139
Experience:  Over 20 years of experience as a veterinarian.
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there, I am a breeder of golden retrievers and unfortunately

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Hi there, I am a breeder of golden retrievers and unfortunately one of my pups has come down with"puppy strangles". We have made all prospective buyers aware of this, and I have issue now with one. I would like some third party advice, They sighned the deposit sheet, left the deposit and arranged collection of the pup, one that isn't affected with "strangles", they now have given back word and are demanding all their money back or they will take the matter further to the BVA and the kennel club, their claim is that we did not make them aware of the one pup that had strangles. Am I within my rights to keep the deposit or should I return it too them.
Hello, my name is***** and I have over 20 years of experience as a veterinarian. I'd like to help with your concerns about your struggles with one of the buyers of a pup whose littermate has strangles.
If you want to keep the buyer's deposit then I would consult with a solicitor that can read through your contract and determine whether you have a legal right to do so. The wording of the contract, your guarantee of health, and whether this pup was sold as a breeding quality versus pet quality pup will likely determine your rights.
However it may be less stress and cost for you in the long run to simply return the deposit and find another buyer. By doing so you can avoid any taint or bad mouthing by this buyer which could put you and your breeding program in a bad light. By returning their deposit your reputation as a breeder that stands behind their dogs is apparent, and shows that you are not being underhanded. Most knowledgeable people will respect that and realize even the best of breeders sometimes have puppies that get sick through no fault of the breeder.
To be fair if this puppy is being sold as a breeding quality pup they do have some valid concerns with the pup, given his littermate has been diagnosed with strangles.
We know that there is likely some genetic predisposition to develop strangles because some breeds are more likely to develop it compared to others, and Goldens have a higher incidence compared to other breeds.
While it is true this pup may be healthy now, it is possible that he could develop strangles too, we often see more than one pup in a litter affected. And pups that have strangles should not be bred.
Frankly I would be inclined to return their deposit, if only because these aren't the sort of people that I would want to have one of my pups, nor have to deal with in the long run. While the pup that they are purchasing is healthy, and will likely remain so, these are the sorts of people that will be looking for trouble.
Best of luck to you, Dr. Kara.
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Customer: replied 3 years ago.

Thankyou for your help, all I needed was a third party view. We have taken the descion to return the money, however our sales contract and all our puppy packs, we copied off the breeder who we bought the Mother of the litter of pups off. The mother and father of the litter were in perfect health. The puppy pack that we issue to buyers has been vetted by solicitors, and in light of recent events trading standards, and also our own vets who have been a great help throughout. I do agree with you that knowledgeable people would appreciate that even the best breeders have issues, and our pups aren't really bred for breeding purpose, more as family pets. We spoke to trading standards, and the Kennel club, and they both said that they didn't have a leg to stand on and that we should keep the deposit. I also agree with you that these people are out for trouble and have a bulling tactic to get what they want. Our vet is outraged at the behaviour of the corrispondance of these people who at first seemed fair and genuine people hence the reason to give them their deposit back,. I'm now glad they haven't got one of my pups, as they could have been a constant trouble and worry,,, again thankyou for your advice and help,, Daryl

Daryl, given these people's attitude and behavior thus far I believe that you saved yourself much grief by returning their deposit. Sometimes being in the right doesn't necessarily make things any easier. You sound like a very reasonable and conscientious breeder, it's their loss that they backed out of what sounds like a great pup.