Friday, June 19, 2009

Rat Terriers and Health Testing

I was recently out on Twitter and noticed some folks stating that Rat Terriers have no health problems. That is simply not true ... The Rat Terriers are known to have the following health issues:

Luxating Patellas
Hip Dysplasia
Legg-Calve-Perthes Disease
Cardiac Issues
Canine Dilution Alopecia (CDA) --This condition may affect any dilutely pigmented dog, regardless of
coat color.

There are more health issues that have appeared in the breed, these are just some of the most seen issues.

The Orthopedic Foundation for Animals is a site where breeders who are testing their Rat Terriers can have the health results (good or bad) posted for all to see. This site is not meant to point a finger at breeders who disclose their health issues, it's to educate that the breed does have problems. If breeders didn't post negative results how are we helping the breed grow? It is our kennels policy to post all results good or bad, we are in-fact breeding for the betterment of the breed. So if your looking to purchase a Rat Terrier, please always consider buying only health tested dogs from reputiable breeders.

The Orthopedic Foundation for Animals site can be found at:

Thursday, May 14, 2009

Rat Terrier Registries

Did you know that Rat Terriers are accepted into the American Kennel Club Foundation Stock (FSS program)? They are also allowed to compete in performance events and Earthdog. It won't be long till Rat Terriers are allowed into the miscellanous classes in AKC. Fact: Rat Terriers will be in the Terrier Group! Right now you can see Rat Terriers at most UKC shows. They are one of the largest entries at the United Kennel Club's PRemier show, held in Kalamazoo, MI June 11th - 14th. If your looking to add a Rat Terrier, come to the UKC's Premier and meet breeders from around the U.S.

We will be there with several of our top winning Rat Terriers, having lots of fun.

Rat Terriers Found in Pet Stores

Please NEVER purchase a Rat Terrier from a pet store. Good breeders do NOT sell Rat Terriers to pet stores. Only puppy mills sell them to pet stores. If you see a Rat Terrier in the pet store, do buy it, or any puppy. Do not even buy anything from the pet store. If we don't buy anything from these pet stores that sells puppies, they will have to close down. If we can shut enough of the pet stores down (that sell puppies) the puppy mills will have no market to sell puppies. We have to stop Puppy Mills, and together we can. Help spread the word.

If a pet store offers you the breeder's name .. do your homework first, go out and research that breeder. Both United Kennel Club (UKC) and American Kennel Club (AKC) do not allow breeders to broker puppies. No legit breeder is selling to pet stores. Turn the pet store in, to the local authorites if you see sick puppies.

We need to be the voice of the millions of dogs that suffer in puppy mills.

Thursday, February 26, 2009

Rat Terriers

Wondering how many people really know what a Rat Terrier is? Well to start its a dog! Recognized first by the United Kennel Club (UKC), Kalamazoo, MI. Rat Terriers were accepted in the American Kennel Club (AKC) Foundation Stock Program (FSS) several years ago and are awaiting full AKC recognition.

I wanted to take time to introduce the Rat Terrier to those who don't know much about this relatively new breed. They are in the Terrier group and are amazing!

Let me tell you a bit about how I came to adore this breed of dog. I have had Rat Terriers since 1999. My first Rat Terrier was a little rescue named Gomez. He was miniature in size, standing about 11" and weighing just 9 lbs. HE was a black tuxedo and was super sweet. I then adopted Sierra a standard piebald rat terrier. In 2000 I purchased my first Rat Terrier show dog, Amber. Amber would later be hit by car and be buried on the farm. I sure do miss her everyday.

I have since grown to love this breed of dog for their loyalty, behavior traits and for everything that makes up the Rat Terrier. I have a web site where you can see the dogs I own and have breed. Some of the dogs are ranked highly in the Nation. This year I was blessed to have the #1 dog in UKC Top Ten in the Conformation Ring. But our dogs are not bred for just beauty alone. We breed for performance as well.

Rat Terriers are wonderful athletes, they can Terrier Race, run Agility, Rally, Obedience and even Go-to-Ground. Don't let their size fool you. Rat Terriers range from Minature (no taller than 13" to Standard no taller than 18". I myself prefer a Rat Terrier in the height range of 14 - 15 1/2". But no matter what the height I adore them all! I just find those moderate standards can really hunt!

A Rat Terrier is considered a working Terrier. Oh yes they hunt. You may ask ... "What do they hunt"... they hunt, mice, rats, goundhogs, tree squirrels and chase rabbits. As the Rat Terrier becomes more popular, it will be tough on breeders which are true to the breed traits and produce working terriers to keep those standards in their breeding program. Soon the pet market will push for a Rat Terrier to be more of a house/companion. A breeder must find balance in their program to produce a Rat Terrier litter that is not too "over the top" that they can't find terrier homes to place those non-show or performance puppies. It's a fine balance.

Well that is where I will stop this Blog today. Look for more on the Rat Terrier coming soon!