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How to Tell if Your Puppy is Purebred

Updated on February 9, 2016

The trend of purchasing purebred dogs often exacerbates when movies portraying particular dog breeds cause a temporary craze. At this point, people flock to breeders looking for a ''purebred'' puppy being either a Dalmatian (101 Dalmations), a Labrador (Marley and me) or a Chihuahua (Beverly Hills Chihuahua). However, first time dog owners may not know much about what a purebred dog really is, therefore they may find themselves only questioning later if their dog is really a purebred.

Signs You Own a Purebred Dog

A purebred dogs is the end product of selective breeding backed up with proper documentation. The main quality of a purebred puppy is that once adult, it will develop the main traits and behaviors that are typical of the breed. Purebred dogs are therefore specimens that have been bred for centuries with the main purpose of adhering to specific conformations and standards.

A purebred puppy grants predictability, meaning that it is obvious how the puppy will turn out looking from its size, color and texture of fur to its temperament. However, not all purebred dogs have the same identical temperament, there may be slight variances from one individual and another, but they mostly adhere to the breed's basic temperament.

If you have purchased a purebred dog, very likely you have paid a hefty price. Purebred puppies are quite expensive because the breeders must cover many expenses. Stud charges, food, medical expenses, vaccinations are some major expenses that need to be somewhat recuperated.

As mentioned earlier, the selective breeding of a purebred dogs is backed with proper documentation. These are the famous ''papers''. A dog with papers is a dog that has been registered with a particular registry. The largest registry of the Unites States is the American Kennel Club, AKC. Other famous registries are the (United Kennel Club) UKC , the Canadian Kennel Club and the Continental Kennel Club.

A puppy with ''papers'' basically means that he is automatically eligible for documentation because its parents have been registered with any of these registries. You will have to follow up and register the puppy yourself by mailing out a registration application and paying a fee.If registering with the AKC, this can be done online now. If the puppy is older and has already been registered, the breeder will have to give you the registration certificate which means at this point that the dog ownership is officially transferred to you.

Purebred dogs are often accompanied by a ''pedigree''. This the puppy's ancestry, it other words, it's family tree. A pedigree will date back at least four generations displaying all the registered names of the puppy's ancestors. Good breeders should know all this by heart, if they are really serious about breeding. Health papers are also another plus you will get from a well bred puppy.

One important consideration: a dog with papers does not automatically translate into a puppy guaranteed to be healthy or with a stable temperament. A puppy with papers may theoretically simply mean that it is a product of selective breeding from verifiable blood lines. Attentive home work and research still needs to be conducted in order to find a reputable breeder.

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      Ken Roberts 16 months ago

      just enjoy your dog he is going to be your best friend . papers or not ,. having a blood line only counts when showing your dog. it is expensive to pay for also . I was told by my Vet and a breeder that my Lab is full blooded but it does not matter to me . Straying from the blood line makes a better pet

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      jmholland16 6 years ago

      I RECENTLY GOT A PUPPY I WAS TOLD IT WAS A FULL BLOODED LAB BUT MY DAD SAID THAT IT IS NOT FULL BLOODED... WHAT ARE SOME SIGNES I CAN LOOK FOR TO TELL IF HE IS TRULY FULL BLOODED? I ALSO HAVE MY DOUBTS. I GOT HIM FROM A LOCAL STORE,THAT WERE JUST GIVING THEM AWAY I KNOW A LAB IS WORTH A LOT AND IM NOT SURE WHAT TO BELEIVE BECAUSE I DON'T THINK THEY WOULD JUST GIVE AWAY PURE BREAD LAB PUPPYS... CAN SOMEONE PLEASE HELP ME?

    • Bat eyes profile image

      Bat eyes 7 years ago

      This hub is very helpful!

    • bmtphoenix profile image

      bmtphoenix 7 years ago from Austin, TX

      Eh, I'm one of those people that doesn't really agree with the idea of spending tons of money on a purebred dog while hundreds of "inferior" dogs are put down every day...

    • ocbill profile image

      ocbill 7 years ago from hopefully somewhere peaceful and nice

      Very helpful. The strange thing is there must be 5 or 10 new dog breeds in the last 20 years which was the time I was grooming dogs.

    • Darlene Sabella profile image

      Darlene Sabella 7 years ago from Hello, my name is Toast and Jam, I live in the forest with my dog named Sam ...

      Great hub, and I have a toy poodle, I love these dogs because they give so much love, they also are very smart and are said to have the mind of a two year old child. They give you far more then you could ever return, these dogs are special, well, all dogs are special but I like a lap dog.