What Do You Get For Your Money?

What do you get for your money? Some people ask why my puppies are so much more expensive than kelpies advertised in the local paper.

Good question – why are my puppies worth so much more than those from Joe Blow down the road currently advertised in the local paper? Basically it is due to all the time, effort, and money that I have put into health testing, temperament testing, training, proving, and selecting my dogs for breeding - that adds value.

So, what do you get for a $1000 puppy? Proven temperament and trainability... mom, dad, grandmother, grandfather, and great grand parents for many generations are trained and temperament tested - and they have been to a million dog shows, agility trials, obedience trials and other competitions, earning titles to prove it all.

Proven health... mom, dad, grandmother, grandfather, and great grand parents for many generations have had their hips, elbows, eyes & hearts tested, they are clear of all health problems that I can possibly test for.

They are to breed standard... which may not mean a lot to you, but it should. It's what keeps a Kelpie from looking like a Border Collie, or a Cattle Dog. It's what maintains structure and soundness, and what makes a breed a breed. The kelpie extended breed standard is 21 pages long and a copy can be found here

You also get me. Lifetime support if and when you need it. You get a knowledgeable breeder and expert in your breed. You can call me day or night, and even on holidays. I am there for you through all your joys and frustrations, sickness and health. I will do anything I need to do to make sure that owning one of my puppies is the most wonderful experience of your life. You have the peace of mind knowing that no matter what ever happens to you, your dog, your best friend, has a safe place to live out the rest of his life.

You also benefit from the books I have read, the hours I have studied, the experts I have learned from, the hundreds of mistakes I have made to help you not have the same mistake, the thousands of dollars I have invested in training, certifications, degrees etc.

You get the option of attending our biannual Callicoma Get Togethers where you meet other Callicoma owners, and join in on fun training and play sessions. You can see pics from our 2013 and 2015 Get Togethers by clicking on the dates. You also get access to our Callicoma Facebook group where you can share photos and stories of your dog, see how litter mates are going, and meet other like minded, kelpie loving people – many people on this group have become great friends and visited each other not only throughout Australia, but across the world!

So what about that $200 puppy out of the paper? You get a puppy with unknown temperament, health, and type. You can potentially get a dog genetically predisposed to fears and aggression, a dog with debilitating health issues, a dog who will never be able to fulfil the goals that you have set out for him. And if you ever needed to return that dog (life can sometimes throw you a curve ball), that person will not take your 5 or 8 or 10 year old dog back... you will be stuck putting your dog up for adoption, or putting him down.

So, who's making money? I have never actually figured it out, but when averaged over the year with all the costs of feeding, health testing, veterinary care, competition entry and associated travel I definitely lose money on every puppy. I don't breed dogs to make money. I breed dogs because I love my breed and I believe that there are wonderful people out there who should have the opportunity to own wonderful dogs. The person selling the $200 puppy is making a profit of about $150 per puppy. That person breeds for profit. Oh, I am sure they love their dogs, but not enough to be any benefit to anyone other than themselves.

I guess people don't really understand value. It is not about the price you pay, but what you are getting for that price. And in the end, if what you are getting for $1000 is not worth anything to you, then by all means, the $200 puppy is a much better value.