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Thread: Tips for evaluating my first started dog?

  1. #1
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    Question Tips for evaluating my first started dog?

    I am in the process of searching for my first started dog. It will be used primarily for waterfowl hunting and as a companion for my 3 year old son (and me). I am looking for the best trained male I can find for around $2,500...but I'm not sure of how to evaluate the dog when I find it. How do I keep from getting screwed over and ending up with a dog that doesn't do what I want? Thanks in advance for any pointers.

  2. #2
    Super Moderator Vicky Trainor's Avatar
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    One of the best things you could do is to take an experienced retriever trainer/person with you when you go to evaluate the dog. Some times another pair of eyes and ears will notice things that you might not.

    If you are in an area where there is a retriever club, make contact with the club. Go to some of the trainings sessions they may hold. This would give you an opportunity to watch dogs at various levels of training.

    Ask for references...and pointedly ask for not only the positive references, but also ones that might not be favorable to the owner. Just because someone is a retriever trainer or has a retriever for sale does not mean that they are completely honest about the dog you may be interested in purchasing.

    Don't be hasty in purchasing the dog. Yes, you might miss out on finding a good one, but take your time. Go watch the dog work several times. Ask the owner to let you work the dog on some obedience drills or marks. If the dog is out of state, try to find someone in the area that could actually go see the dog work and give you an honest opinion.

    Do your homework.

    Good luck on finding just the right dog. I have successfully found several good started dogs for some of my clients; and I have been duped once when trusting someone I thought I knew personally and would be honest with me and do right by my client. That taught me a valuable lesson.....don't just take the word of the person.....go see the dog or have someone go see the dog and report back to me what their opinion of the dog is. Might cost a little more money, but worth it in the end.
    Vicky
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  3. #3
    Senior Member huntinman's Avatar
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    I've got one I'll sell you. He's blind in one eye, has three legs, tail missing. One ear hangs funny... Answers to the name of Lucky
    Bill Davis

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    Sold!!!!!!

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    Senior Member shawninthesticks's Avatar
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    Avoid any thing that is fluffy and likes bandana's.
    Shawn White

    HR Big Creek Retrievers Independence Day JH QAA "Indy "

  6. #6
    Senior Member Steve Shaver's Avatar
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    Definitely ask for references and if you cant go and actually see the dog ask for health clearences, pictures, pedigree, video of the dog at work and at play. I offer all the above when selling a dog.

  7. #7
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    Good advice so far!! Also ask if you can return the dog within a certain amount of time if you don't like it. I sell all my dogs with a 10 day money back guarantee. They can bring the dog back for any reason if the dog is returned at their expense and is in the same condition they purchased it in. Also make sure you have a sales agreement.

    Angie

  8. #8
    Senior Member Raymond Little's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by cph0522 View Post
    I am in the process of searching for my first started dog. It will be used primarily for waterfowl hunting and as a companion for my 3 year old son (and me). I am looking for the best trained male I can find for around $2,500...but I'm not sure of how to evaluate the dog when I find it. How do I keep from getting screwed over and ending up with a dog that doesn't do what I want? Thanks in advance for any pointers.
    How much do you know about "Started" dogs? Do you plan to finish your new started dog? $2,500 should buy you a dog that has been CC,FF and steady to shot but not much else. Suggest you spend a couple weekends with a local pro to see the various levels of dog and price range. Might just want to save another $2,500 and get one with all the wheels already on ready to roll.
    Just Win

  9. #9
    Senior Member 2tall's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by huntinman View Post
    I've got one I'll sell you. He's blind in one eye, has three legs, tail missing. One ear hangs funny... Answers to the name of Lucky
    You forgot neutered!
    Carol,
    Owned and handled by Cruisin' with Indiana Jones, JH
    Alternate Handler: Westwind Buffalo Soldier
    Apprentice Handler: Snake River Medicine Man, JH
    http://newhoperetrievers.com

  10. #10
    Senior Member copterdoc's Avatar
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    Ask a bunch of questions, listen to the answers, but don't take them as the God's honest truth, until you verify them.
    Find out why the dog is for sale. There's a reason.

    Here's a few resources, for you to check out.

    http://www.offa.org/search.html?btnS...dvanced+Search
    http://classic.akc.org/store/reports...ort_cde=CMPREC
    http://labradorcnm.com/pages/site/0-frame_site.html
    http://web.vmdb.org/CERFVerify/
    https://www.entryexpress.net/

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