In my search for a Maltese puppy over the last 6 months, I have found that many of the breeders in my area (central virginia) are selling puppies for prices ranging from $600-$900 yet they don't have papers. I've heard numerous excuses.
I don't want a show dog, I want a pet. At the same time, if I'm going to be paying that much for my dog, I want it to be healthy and I want to know that it was bred correctly.
I would think that breeders should charge less if they are selling puppies without papers.
Any suggestions or comments?
Thanks.
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In my search for a Maltese puppy over the last 6 months, I have found that many of the breeders ... I would think that breeders should charge less if they are selling puppies without papers. Any suggestions or comments? Thanks.

IF the dogs you are viewing "are" well bred, then you should get a pedigree - preferably a 5 generation, showing just how well bred the puppy is. Responsible breeders will not give Registration papers with a pet quality puppy.
If the excuses you are given are because "they" don't show and are breeding "just pets" it's a red flag they are probably not doing all the things a responsible breeder should be doing. It doesn't matter how much the cost if the pup has not been produced from a carefully thought-out breeding. It's particularly annoying when irresponsible breeders say they are breeding "just pets" - since it implies that they don't consider a pet should be as well bred as any show dog or dog of quality. Plus it shows they are breeding for one thing - .
Stay away from such people. If indeed you want a pet quality puppy, then you can find one from a breeder who is breeding with quality in mind. And if you do, don't expect to receive papers on your dog. A pedigree by all means, but no registration. People who insist on papers when they say they say they don't intend to breed or show, are often those who end up breeding anyway and knowledgeable breeders know that. Hence no registration or restricted registration on pet quality puppies.It's "because" irresponsible breeders go around giving registration papers with poorly bred puppies, that the gullible unknowledgeable public often think the dog they have must be good because it's registered and breed their dog. And so it goes on, generation after generation of poorly bred litters which often have some major problems later in life. Don't be in a hurry. Find a responsible breeder who does show their dogs, who does grade the litter as to quality and does withhold registration on puppies which they think are not good enough quality to produce another generation.

For a well bred puppy of pet quality, you'll probably end up paying the same or less as you would from the idiots who say they are "just breeding pets". If you don't intend to show and/or breed, then the registration papers won't mean anything to you anyway since you'd spay or neuter you pup most probably.
Incidentally many responsible breeders spay/neuter pet puppies before placement these days. It is after all, the only sure way to know the puppy won't become just another breeding machine.
EGD
Responsible breeders will not give Registration papers with a pet
quality puppy.If indeed you want a pet quality puppy, then you can find one from a breeder who is breeding ... who end up breeding anyway and knowledgeable breeders know that. Hence no registration or restricted registration on pet quality puppies.

Huh?
I have never heard such a thing. Responsible breeders DO give registration papers with their pet quality puppies. Along with the pedigree showing previous generations.
They may use a limited registration - that would mean that any litters from that dog can not be registered. True, it does not keep people from breeding. And then offering the puppies as "purebred, but without papers". These BYB will say it's because of the cost and the terrible amount of paperwork to register a dog. That's absurd, of course.

A breeder may require a spay/neuter certificate before transferring the paperwork. (This is what we did for both of our dogs.)

I suspect that what is happening when these people are not offering papers with their puppies is that they did not receive them. Either they got a limited registration or they never fulfilled their spay/neuter agreement (obviously) and therefore did not get the registration from the breeder. Perhaps back a generation or two from the puppies that are now available.

But there is no way I would buy a puppy that is registerable and NOT get papers.
For a breeder to allow a puppy to go to a home, withholding papers because she feels they may breed a pet quality puppy, indicates that the home is not very well chosen. A truly responsible breeder would not ever let the puppy go there.
~~Judy
I don't want a show dog, I want a pet. At the same time, if I'm going to be paying that much for my dog, I want it to be healthy and I want to know that it was bred correctly.

Exactly. Hold out for that puppy from a responsible breeder. If you are going to settle for less, go all the way and get your dog from a shelter or a rescue organization. Do not support irrespnsible breeders.
I would think that breeders should charge less if they are selling puppies without papers.

Yes, they should charge less. A LOT less. They don't, but they should.

Registration itself is not the big deal. But the lack of it is a very large red flag when you are trying to find a responsible breeder.

This really proves the point that has been made here so often. Pet quality puppies from a responsible breeder do not cost appreciably more than puppies from a BYB or a pet store. The price of the puppy is not a very good indicator of the quality of the breeder.
~~Judy
Any suggestions or comments?

None except that you've got more common sense than a lot of buyers out there. Out of curiosity, have any of the "breeders" you've talked to A. had health tests done on the sire and dam, at least B. volunteered this info without being asked?
Huh? I have never heard such a thing. Responsible breeders DO giveregistration papers with their pet quality puppies.

Not all of them do so immediately. The breeder Dani bought her Pug from doesn't give reg. papers on her pet puppies until she gets proof of s/n on them. She lives in southern PA, where there are a lot of small-time puppy farmers* -she screens her puppy buyers fairly carefully, but prefers to err on the side of caution.
*There's an Amish guy near her who's breeding Jugs- apparently because a male Pug and a female JRT were the first two intact dogs he easily got hold of. :-P
Any suggestions or comments?

None except that you've got more common sense than a lot of buyers out there. Out of curiosity, have ... to A. had health tests done on the sire and dam, at least B. volunteered this info without being asked?

and c) are members of the maltese breed club?
Just a thought.
Gwen
None except that you've got more common sense than a ... and dam, at least B. volunteered thisinfo without being asked?

and c) are members of the maltese breed club? Just a thought.

Depending on the breed, not being a member of the national breed club isn't necessarily a mark against a breeder. Some clubs are very elitist or political and it can be difficult for someone who IS doing the right things to join (or simply don't want to because of the other members...)

Emily Carroll
Fluttervale Labradors: www.fluttervale.com
CPG: www.geocities.com/cyberpetgame/
4-H Club: www.geocities.com/woofsandwiggles/
True. See the rest of my post. This is exactly what we did.

My point is that the papers ARE available. The breeders the OP is talking with do not seem to have papers available. (?)
~~Judy
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