You Have Studied Nederlandse Kooikerhondjes. To begin, we expect you to have thoroughly studied the description of Nederlandse Kooikerhondje temperament found on our website to ensure that a Kooikerhondje is the right breed for you and your family. We also expect that you have read through our entire website. Ideally, you were able to meet several well-bred Kooikerhondjes in person, either ours or those of the breeders with whom we work closely. We firmly believe that Kooikerhondjes, including ours, are NOT the ideal pet for most American families. We expect that you will have evaluated your circumstances and have made a sound decision about whether you really have the time and energy to add a puppy to your family. And, if you do, that Kooikerhondjes should be your breed of choice.
Right Puppy at the Right Time. Once you’ve decided that a Kooikerhondje is the right dog for you, we ask you to look closely at your calendar. We prefer to sell our puppies only to buyers in the United States. We have developed a very good system for preparing puppies for their trip home. Your puppy will be ready to go with you, whether by car or plane. We do not ship puppies. New owners must come get their puppy in person. We do not sell to brokers or anyone acting as an agent for another person.
You Have Time to Develop Your Puppy. Once home, we ask that you have a relatively clear calendar until your puppy is 16 weeks old. These weeks are critical to a puppy’s long-term development. Socialization and training must be designed to get the most out of these few months. Vacations, business trips or heavy deadlines requiring long hours away from the puppy are not congruent with the work involved in preparing a young dog for its lifetime. The learning that occurs during these first months cannot be easily recaptured later.
The Dog is a Family Priority. Your puppy must be a significant and beloved member of your family. He or she will live in your home – not in a kennel or backyard – and receive premium food, thoughtful and professional medical care, and lifelong training. We prefer buyers with fully fenced yards but will make exceptions if you have the time and available facilities for adequate exercise and constant outside supervision. “Invisible fencing” or “underground electronic fencing” is not acceptable. We prefer experienced dog owners for our puppies – those people, who as adults, have raised other puppies to adulthood. At a minimum, we expect our buyers to commit to daily exercise and training throughout the life of the dog. We also expect the puppy will attend weekly training classes for the first two years of life.
Premium Food. Our puppies must be fed a premium diet. Please follow our suggestions regarding types and brands of food.
Partner in Vet Care. We expect our puppy owners to become partners with their veterinarian in their dog’s health care, rather than turning all decisions over to their vet.
Performance Puppy Requirements. If you are buying one of our performance quality puppies, we expect you to either compete with or use your dog regularly in one or more venues. If you have a competition puppy, we expect you to train and show this puppy in conformation, obedience, and/or agility, to a relatively high level (CH, CDX, AX, etc.). If you have selected a search and rescue, service or therapy candidate, we expect that it will be trained to a high level and used regularly.
Pet Puppy Requirements. You are not off the hook if you are buying one of our pet puppies. These pups will require regular training, exercise and even work for their lifetime. We ask you to do regular obedience classes and training for at least two full years. We strongly encourage you to pursue an AKC Canine Good Citizen (CGC) title to further develop your relationship with your dog
Health Testing Our commitment to producing healthy puppies demands that we collect health information from all puppies of our breeding. We ask that owners keep us informed of any health issues for the life of the dog. This testing provides important health information to owners and includes OFA hip x-rays, an eye exam by a certified veterinary ophthalmologist, and a patella exam by your veterinarian. We require all of our puppies be x-rayed between 2 and 2.5 years old for Hip Dysplasia using the Orthopedic Foundation of America (OFA) protocol. The OFA Eye and Patella certification may be done anytime after 1 year old but before 2.5 years old. Depending upon where you live, these tests will cost approximately $300-$400.
DNA Testing We know the carrier status for each parent regarding the two breed specific inherited disorders, von Willebrand’s Disease (vWD) and Hereditary Necrotizing Myelopathy (ENM). Only those puppies used for breeding will need DNA testing for carrier status of ENM and vWd. This will add another approximately $150-$200. It must be done prior to even considering using any dog or bitch in a breeding program.
Temperament Assessment. We also ask that our owners complete the Canine Behavior Assessment and Research Questionnaire (C-BARQ) beginning at 6 months and again at 2 years. The C-BARQ was developed and is administered by the University of Pennsylvania. This questionnaire enables us to assess and follow over time the temperaments of the dogs we are producing to ensure they are meeting our goals and expectations, as well as that of their owners.