In order to give our breeding dogs the very best life possible, it is important to limit how many dogs we personally keep at our home. We also understand that in order to breed the highest quality dogs possible, we need to continuously evaluate and add quality blood-lines to our breeding program. So, how is this possible? For us and many breeders like us, the answer is a Guardian Home Program. Our Guardian Home Program allows us and other dog breeders like us to expand our dog breeding program the right way….by keeping our breeding dogs out of kennels and in Guardian Homes where they live as Cherished Family Members. We simply can’t keep all of the wonderful dogs that we would like to in our home and we want our breeding dogs to have a normal family life, not be kept in a kennel for breeding only.
In order to be considered as a Guardian Home, you must live within 20 minutes of Botetourt Veterinary and be flexible for dropping off and picking up the dog for health testing, vet visits, breeding, and whelping puppies.
As a Guardian Home, you get a free puppy and you become that puppy’s forever home. For female dogs, we retain breeding rights starting at sexual maturity and ending once the female has whelped (given birth to) a set number of litters. Each Guardian Dog Contract is unique, but it is normally four litters depending on what we’re trying to accomplish with a particular female and how well she reacts to being a Mother. Male dogs are bred on an “as needed” basis.
Guardians are responsible for some of the dog’s regular pet maintenance: grooming, food, insurance, pet-related vet visits, etc. We pay for annual vet exams, vaccinations, and year round parasite prevention while the dog is in our program. We perform genetic health testing required for breeding and all breeding-related expenses. Once the dog has passed their genetic health testing he/she is added to our breeding program. We decide when each dog will be bred and to whom. Females stay with their Guardian Family during pregnancy (normally lasts about 63 days) and then are returned to us a few days before their due date to deliver (whelp) and then raise puppies (approximately 5 weeks). Once the puppies are weaned, then the female is returned to her Guardian Family. When the dog is older and completes his/her breeding obligations, we pay for spay/neuter and your dog comes home to enjoy the wonderful life you have provided for him/her since puppy hood.
There are many things that Guardian Families need to consider. Guardians of females have to deal with several heat cycles and keeping their girl protected from unwanted males. The Guardian Family will need to learn the signs of a heat cycle and be willing to communicate, cooperate and coordinate with us to ensure a successful breeding. Because of canine venereal diseases, male dogs can only mate with approved females so the Guardian Family is responsible for keeping the male away from intact female dogs.
We view our Guardian Home Program as a true “win-win” situation. Our Guardian Families receive a “pick of the litter” quality puppy for free, and we have the satisfaction of knowing that our breeding dogs are living life as cherished family members.
To qualify for our Guardian Home Program, you must:
Live within 20 minutes of Botetourt Vet (Fincastle, Daleville, Troutville, Hollins vicinity) and be flexible for dropping off and picking up the dog for health testing, vet visits, breeding, and whelping.
Keep the dog safe and contained at all times, either by having a fenced-in yard (underground/e-fence is acceptable if pup is supervised) or leash walking.
Take the dog to our vet, Botetourt Vet, for vet care. We pay for annual exams, vaccinations, parasite prevention medication and breeding-related vet expenses. You pay for non-routine pet related vet expenses.
Provide basic training that is standard for dog ownership (house, leash, and crate training, basic obedience).
Keep the dog free of mats and tangles, and have the dog groomed on 6-8 week schedule with a professional groomer.
Feed our recommended diet (see our Dog Food page).
Keep the dog on your choice of pet insurance (ex. Healthy Paws, Embrace, Trupanion)
Understand that we are waiving the purchase price of the dog in exchange for a service- you must be willing to communicate, cooperate and coordinate with us during their time in our program, and be dedicated to providing a safe, loving home for the lifetime of the dog.
These dogs are the foundation of our program and our babies! Please only apply if you can provide an excellent home for one of our babies! For more information, fill out one of our standard puppy application HERE. THANK YOU!