Have you been thinking about buying a puppy? If so, it is quite easy. You just have to start googling things like “Basenji for sale UK” and see what websites pop up.
If you have already done that, you might have noticed that many websites specializing in selling puppies label their dogs according to their pet quality and show quality. What does it mean for you, though? Are show-quality puppies not meant to be owned as pets?
In this article, you will get to read about the differences between show puppies and pet puppies, starting with the definitions of conformation and show quality. Once you are done reading, this entire topic should get a whole lot easier to understand!
What Is Conformation?
Conformation is a term used to assess a set of physical characteristics of a dog and determine whether it matches the breed standard. If a dog has an ideal conformation for its breed, it means that it has the features that are specified in the breed standard and the correct proportions and balance between the different parts of its body.
If a dog does not have these features, it will not be able to take part in conformation dog shows. For instance, if a Spanish Water Dog does not have a smooth or wavy coat, it will be disqualified from the competition.
In other cases, a dog might get disqualified for possessing traits that are associated with another breed. For example, if a Pharaoh Hound has white spots on its back, shoulder, or neck, it will get disqualified, as it is the hallmark feature of the Ibizan Hound.
What Is Show Quality?
Show-quality dogs are dogs that have ideal conformation for their breed and are capable of winning conformation shows. If you are planning on showing your dog in conformation shows, it is best to buy a show-quality puppy.
Show-quality puppies must be registered with the appropriate breed club, which means that they will have a registration number that can be traced back to the original dam and sire.
However, this does not mean that all registered puppies are show-quality! You can register your puppy with your local kennel club, but this does not necessarily mean that your puppy has great conformation.
It is worth noting there are quite a few breeds out there that can be disqualified for not having a few teeth in their mouths. Most puppies do not have permanent teeth just yet, which means that determining the potential of these particular breeds is quite difficult.
What Are Show-Quality Puppies?
Show-quality puppies are puppies that are registered with the local kennel club, have been bred by a qualified breeder, and can be shown in conformation shows. You do not have to take care of it yourself – it can be done by the dog’s breeder or a professional handler.
What Is a Conformation Show?
Conformation shows are dog shows in which judges, who are familiar with specific dog breeds, evaluate purebred dogs for how they conform to their breed standard. This helps improve the next generation of dogs that belong to that particular breed.
Do Show-Quality Puppies Make Great Pets?
If a puppy is healthy and its owner does their best to take care of its needs, it is likely to become a great pet. It does not matter whether it is a show-quality puppy or not. However, show-quality puppies might be a bit more expensive than pet-quality puppies.
Moreover, you might be expected to take that dog to conformation shows every few months. This might be a bit inconvenient if you work full-time and do not have the money to hire a professional handler.
It is also worth noting that show-quality puppies should be fed high-quality food and taken to regular appointments with their veterinarian for shots and health checks. You will need to train your puppy early on, too.
It is not easy to train a show-quality puppy. You must start from day one and deal with many bad habits, such as jumping up and barking at strangers. In the end, your puppy might turn out to be too shy for the show ring in spite of your efforts.
What Are Pet-Quality Puppies?
Pet-quality puppies are puppies that are from a bloodline of show dogs but do not have the characteristics that they need to win conformation shows. In spite of that, they tend to be a bit cheaper than show-quality puppies and make for great pets!
What If They Refuse?
You might feel tempted to buy a show-puppy with ideal conformation but do not feel like taking part in conformation shows. If that is your case, you should let the breeder that you want to buy a dog from know about it.
They might refuse to sell you the puppy, and that is perfectly fine. Having their dogs win conformation shows helps boost the popularity of their business. If a show-quality dog is not taking part in shows, it means that the breeder is missing out on potential buyers and popularity.
The worst thing that you can do is lie to the breeder. The relationship between the two of you should be based on trust. If you trust the breeder and their practices, they should be able to trust you and your intentions.
Showing a dog at conformation shows is not for everyone. It can be very time-consuming, and it might not be the best choice if you are working full-time and just looking for a companion.
If you are looking for a show-quality puppy, research what you are getting into. Know what kind of living conditions your puppy will need, and get to know your breeder before you buy. Do they have great references? Have they been breeding dogs for a while?
In addition to that, it is worth noting that show-quality puppies can end up being great pets for the right owners, and the same goes for pet-quality puppies. If your puppy is properly trained and socialized, you are likely to become an owner of a happy and friendly dog!