A dog is a living creature that requires attention, training, grooming, exercise and proper nutrition.
Are you capable and willing to devote your time/money and attention to a dog?
A dog is a long term commitment, depending on the breed it may live for as much as 16 or 17 years. Acquiring a dog should never be a spontaneous decision.
Is the dog for you or for someone else? If mainly for the children or another loved one, are you also looking forward to the companionship?
Are you trying to replace a dog from the past or find a clone of another? If so, can you accept a dog who is bound to be different?
Have you considered the cost associated with owning a dog? The cost of food, accessories (leads, collars, dishes, crates, etc.), veterinary expenses, training, boarding, grooming and licensing your dog with your City?
Will you enjoy caring for the dog when no one else can, or will you begrudge the time?
Are you gone from home long hours with no one to care for the dog? Do you hurry home from work, only to leave again most nights? What time do you get home?
Do you relax by taking a walk or playing a game, or would you rather snooze on the couch?
Are you a 'neat freak' about your home? Will you be upset at canine chaos?
Do you have the patience for house-breaking and training?
Will you still be a good neighbor when you get a dog?
Are you ready for a puppy?
Have you studied several breeds and understand the purpose the breed was developed for? Some breeds were bred to hunt and have considerable exercise requirements, while other breeds were developed to be companions and have much lower exercise requirements.
Have you interacted with an adult of the breed you are considering?
Are you aware of the breed's adult size, temperament, exercise and grooming requirements?
Do you know the disorders that can appear in this breed and plan to research breeders and lines to avoid problems?
If a problem appears, despite the breeder's and your efforts, are you prepared to deal with it?
Is everyone in the household enthused and willing to help?
What to ask the breeder?
How long have you been breeding dogs?
Will the puppies be registered? have certifications?
Can I see the sire's and dam’s health clearances? Can I meet them?
Are there any problems with the parents temperament or health wise?
Can I see where the puppies are being housed?
What are the tests that you do?
How many litters of puppies do you have per year?
Can you provide references for previous buyers?
At what age will the puppies be ready to go home?
How do you socialize the puppies?
Will the puppies be seen by a vet before they leave?
Will they have up to date shots and deworming?
How should I groom? What type of care is required for the breed?
Will you neuter/ spay the dog? Do I need to spay or neuter my puppy by a certain age?
What kind of guarantee do you offer?
Is there a breeders contract?
Will you be able to help me with care and training issues once I get my puppy home?