If you want to sell a puppy, it can be difficult to know where to start if you’re not used to the process.
You want your puppy to end up in a loving home, taken care of, but how can you be sure that will be the case? How do you vet owners and give them the best chance?
Fear not. With these tips, you can find the best places to advertise, vet potential owners, and give your puppy the best life with their new forever home.
Find the Best Places to Advertise
Out of all the potential places to advertise, it’s likely places like Craigslist aren’t your best bet. Instead, seek out other, higher quality websites and Facebook groups with people looking for puppies.
Craigslist is full of scammers on both ends of the buying and selling, and anyone looking for a dog that hasn’t truly thought it through might end up there.
It’s not impossible to find a good match there, but it’s not likely either.
Attach an Appropriate Price Tag
If you’re in a hurry to adopt your puppies out, it might be tempting to attach a cheap price to them. Cheap price tags lure in more potential buyers, and mean your puppy might be sold fast.
It also, however, might attract poor owners. If someone can’t afford a higher price tag, they may struggle to meet the needs of a puppy. Veterinary visits and quality food don’t come cheap.
It also might attract owners who haven’t put a lot of thought into owning the dog, and even some who want them for nefarious purposes.
You should never, ever rehome a puppy for free for that reason. Many dog fighting rings will seek out free puppies to use as bait, and puppy mills often try to acquire them so they can breed with others and churn out poorly taken care of babies.
Have a look into what quality breeders usually charge for the kind of puppy you’re selling. For more information on pricing, and selling your puppy in general, you can check out Puppy System for a wealth of advice.
Vet Potential Owners
Adopting a puppy is a big commitment, and you want to be sure your buyer is ready! It’s okay to vet them.
Ask them a lot of questions, such as:
- Is everyone in the home on board with a dog?
- What other pets do they have? Are they dog-friendly?
- What’s the living situation like?
- Have they done their research into the breed?
- Is this your first time owning a dog?
Some of those questions have no right answer — for example, an apartment might be fine for one type of dog and not so great for another. However, by taking into account the answers, you can decide if the owner is right for your puppies.
If it’s the person’s first time owning a dog, that might be fine for a breed such as a Labrador, and be a little more difficult for a herding breed like an Australian shepherd. It’s important to weigh this with the research they’ve done.
Ask for References
Whether you want veterinary references or personal, they’re always a good idea.
Personal references will tell you something about their character. Veterinary references can reassure you they take care of the animals they currently have, or have had in the past.
Ask the vet:
- Are their animals up to date on shots? Flea and tick medication?
- When was the last time they saw the animals?
Dogs and cats should have yearly check-ups at least, so it’s easy to gauge if the owners are up to date on this.
Invite Them to Meet
You can invite the new dog owners to meet if you want to get a better sense of them. Invite them to your home to meet the puppies, or go to theirs.
Some breeders want to do puppy home checks, and most rescues do. This is understandable, particularly if the breed needs a fenced-in backyard and space to roam.
Draw Up a Contract
When selling a puppy, you should always have a contract. This holds a new owner accountable should something go wrong.
You should state that the new owner must provide food and water for the puppy and meet their basic medical needs. This is non-negotiable and basic dog care shouldn’t ever have to be in a contract but sadly, better safe than sorry.
Unless you’re selling a puppy with breeding rights, you should state they must be spayed/neutered. The age at which you require this is up to you — recommendations depend on the breed, with larger breeds being more prone to issues if neutered too early.
Regardless, the last thing you want is to create backyard breeders who use their dog to breed and sell puppies.
What to Do if They Can No Longer Take Care Of the Puppy
It’s always good to have a clause in the contract that if they can no longer take care of the dog, they must return the puppy to you to rehome. This prevents the puppy from going somewhere where it may not be taken care of, or ending up in a shelter.
Make Yourself Available to Questions and for Support
The best thing you can do to ensure your puppy has a good home is to make yourself available for questions and support.
Don’t disappear the moment the puppy leaves your sight. Check in often, and offer advice on training, veterinary care, or anything else you might know something about.
That way, you’ll stay up to date and know your puppy is in a good home.
This is How to Sell a Puppy the Right Way
It can be daunting to sell a puppy. There’s always the concern that the dog will end up in a bad home, or may not be taken care of as well as it should.
If you follow these tips, your dog should end up in a loving environment.
For more pet tips and other life advice, check out the rest of our site.