We feel very strongly about our puppies and the quality of our animals. The happiness of the families that come to us is also extremely important. This is not a business of greed for us in the least. We are truly dedicated to providing quality companions. Many of our pups are now therapy dogs and service dogs. That makes us really happy. It is great to know that there are little kids out there growing up with a healthy, reliable family pet that won't wind up in the pound for aggression problems or in the ground because of horrible health problems caused by poor breeding practices.
That sounds a little corny, probably, but it is actually the truth. We are based on integrity and love of the animal.
Anyway, I have loved and worked with animals my entire life so when I say that I do this because I genuinely adore animals and I believe wholeheartedly in the health and happiness of people/families that have companion animals I mean it! I've seen therapy animals really change people's health, both mental and physical. Studies show that people that own pets tend to outlive those that don't. Stress reducing really is very beneficial.
The reason very prestigious kennels and fantastic dogs are expensive is because of the vast amount of money required to invest in proper breed stock as well as the intense amount of work involved in raising them properly. In order to raise a litter of healthy puppies without risking the health of any of them or the Dam requires vast amounts of resources! Also, puppies eat a lot! They actually eat a surprisingly large amount! The time required to keep the puppies CLEAN is unbelievable. As a breeder I can tell you that those that house their dogs in kennels with solid flooring (as required by the USDA for commerical kennels, I think) probably have poo and food-covered puppies up to the date they are going to their new location (home or pet store). Breeding dogs is absolutely NOT profitable unless you spend nearly nothing on the dogs and have many, many litters. You would be amazed at all the hidden costs associated with breeding. It seems like it would be so easy and cheap (even free if you're breeding pets you already have) but it is an extremely arduous and work-intensive undertaking! The majority of would-be breeders have only one litter ever, they never repeat! Its a ton of work for almost no pay.
To make a long story short(er) I charge between $500-1200 generally speaking, although I have brought prices down for good families and special situations and I have given puppies away before as well. It is important to me that our puppies go to the best, most loving homes and not just the wealthiest or the first to respond to an add. My puppies' current market value range in the $1200-2500 range.
I interview families, we get to know each other a bit and then I work with the individual family/person. Some people just can't afford to spend $1200 on a healthy, quality animal even if they wanted to, and so they wind up with unhealthy mill puppies or a rescue, which is probably just an older, more behaviorally screwed up unhealthy mill dog...
So there you have it, my philosophy in a nutshell. I price my dogs so low it can have families wondering why... what is wrong with them... or it is too good to be true but I also have to be fair to my dogs. The small profit pays for their care and food, etc. So thats how we come up with our numbers. Our dogs also eat a premium, all human-grade meat diet. They are certainly some happy and spoiled dogs! :-)
The lovely thing is, I don't ever have to "sell" our puppies. They pretty much speak for themselves. Seeing the parents, the puppies, and how healthy and well behaved (and lovely) they are... I rarely have a puppy that doesn't get reserved before we hit 5 weeks of age. So a sales pitch isn't a requirement.