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Health Guarantee

Our Health Guarantee/Warranty and Guidelines

In order to ensure we are producing healthy, genetically and structurally sound puppies we guarantee to stick to the following standards:

-We will only breed dogs that have OFA passing hip ratings of EXCELLENT, GOOD or FAIR.
-We will only breed dogs that have been examined by a board certified ophthalmologist and have received a passing CAER (formerly CERF).
-We will only breed dogs that have OFA elbow ratings of NORMAL,
-We will only breed dogs that have OFA cardiac ratings of NORMAL
-We are one of the few breeders in the WORLD that tests “ALL” of our dogs for EIC, CNM, PRA-pcrd, RD/OSD, Cystinuria, HNPK, Hyperuricosuria, Narcolepsy, PKD, DM, SD2, Elliptocytosis, MTM1, PRA-pcrd4 and the Dilute gene. We will know the genetic disease status of all our dogs prior to breeding (either through direct testing or clear by parentage-with verifiable/accessible results) and guarantee that all of our puppies will be genetically unaffected by any these genetic diseases. This is a lifetime guarantee!
-We will not breed any dog that has any known health issue that could negatively affect any of our puppies.
-We do our best to stay current with new tests and research regarding health and genetic diseases.

      Example: In 2019 we have begun the process of testing our dogs for Copper Toxicosis (Labrador Retriever Type). This is a new genetic test and it is not fully understood how the disease is expressed. It is considered complex inheritance and involves two genes. The gene that is identified as increasing the risk is ATP7B. If a dog carriers one or two coppies of the gene, then they are considered to be at risk of developing the disease. It does NOT mean the dog will get the disease. The second gene is ATP7A (copper toxicosis modifier) and it is considered a protective gene. So being a carrier for ATP7A decreases the chance of getting the disease and is considered a good thing. We are cautious in making any big decisions regarding our breeding program based on these testing results, simply because not enough is truly known at this time. We will use our testing results for knowledge at this time until more concrete information is available.

Due to our efforts, we are confident offering the warranty that our puppies will be free of genetic hip dysplasia, genetic eye issues, and be unaffected by any of the genetic diseases we test for. In the unlikely event that your puppy fails or is rejected by either the OFA (hips) or CAER (eyes), you will be eligible to receive a new puppy of equal value. If the new puppy is more expensive than the original puppy, the full purchase price of the original puppy will be applied toward the cost of the new puppy. It is the responsibility of the buyer to pay for any difference in purchase price and any associated shipping fees. No money will be refunded, except at the sole discretion of Puppies4home.

 – Research has shown that dysplasia and other joint issues have three main causes: genetics, over feeding (and poor quality food) and too much exercise at a young age (excessive stress on joints). Therefore, Bird Dog Labs does not cover elbow dysplasia or other joint issues due to but not limited to: over-feeding, over-exertion on joints and bones, accidents, injuries, neglect, poor nutrition, etc.

-There is more and more research available today and it is showing that there is a significantly higher risk for specific health issues including orthopedic (hip dysplasia, CCL tears & other joint issues), cancer, behavioral problems and other health considerations due to premature spaying or neutering of dogs before physical maturity. We STRONGLY recommend waiting until pups are a minimum of 12 months old and ideally 18-24 months of age before spaying or neutering.  The following is just one example of why we encourage waiting. The process of early spaying and neutering removes key hormones that are required for the fusion of growth plates in bones. If these hormones are removed too early and are absent when growth plate fusion normally occurs, bones grow longer than they normally would. This results in changing the angles of the legs and as a result puts the dog at higher risk for CCL tears and other joint issues. Most veterinarians still push for early spaying and neutering around 6 months of age. Please do your own research prior to deciding. Based on our extensive research on the subject, starting in 2017, if a puppy has been spayed or neutered prior to 18 months of age the hip guarantee will be null and void.

– To honor this guarantee, we require that Birddog’s, Birddog or BDL be used in the AKC registration of the dog’s name. It is up to you where or how you would like to use it in the name. Here are a few examples:  Birddog’s Amazing Grace or  Birddog Amazing Grace or Amazing Grace of BDL.

-The puppy MUST be registered with the AKC before it turns 1 year of age. We can help you with this process at the time of puppy pick up if you would like. 

– In order to prevent the passing on of defects, the puppy/dog must be spayed or neutered at the expense of the buyer. Written verification that the procedure was performed must be sent directly to us by the vet before a new puppy will be granted. The dog must still be alive, but does not have to be returned and may remain with the buyer. If the buyer chooses to no longer keep the dog, Puppies4home agrees to assist in finding the dog a new suitable home.

-The dog must not have been bred intentionally or unintentionally prior to obtaining official hip & elbow clearances at 24 months of age.

-The dog must not have been spayed or neutered prior to 18 months of age.

Hip x-rays must be submitted to the Orthopedic Foundation for Animals (OFA) or Penn-Hip after 24 months of age. Hips cannot be accurately evaluated for genetic hip defects prior to the age of 2 years, therefore we do not honor preliminary exams. Your retriever must be x-rayed by a board certified veterinarian and be evaluated by the OFA or Penn-Hip by 26 months of age.  In the unlikely event that your retriever’s hips fail or are rejected by the OFA, then you will receive our guarantee if the following conditions are met.

– Hips must not be x-rayed 30 days before or after a female’s heat cycle or if pregnant.
– The dog must not have been spayed/neutered prior to 18  months of age.
– The dog cannot have been bred intentionally or accidentally.
– The guarantee is for genetic hip dysplasia only and not damage due to internal or external  physical injury or from any kind of mistreatment, malnutrition (too much food or poor quality food) or excessive stress on joints (too much exercise as a puppy, such as daily jumping up and down from a truck bed).
– Pup4home, Puppies4home or P4H is used somewhere in the dogs registered name.

Our puppy’s eyes are guaranteed to be free of genetic problems.  All puppies are guaranteed to be able to receive a CAER number from the OFA Canine Eye Registry. Evaluation and diagnosis must be made by a board certified canine ophthalmologist by 30 months of age. Our guarantee does not cover eye disorders that result from physical injury or malnutrition.

We understand the importance of preventing known genetic diseases in the Labrador Retriever breed and these diseases can be 100% prevented through responsible breeding practices. We make every effort to know the status of all our dogs, prior to breeding. We also try to know the EIC & CNM status at a minimum of any outside studs used.
Because of our efforts and testing of our dogs, we guarantee that all Bird Dog Labs puppies will be genetically unaffected of Exercise induced collapse (EIC), Centronuclear Myopathy (CNM), Progressive retinal atrophy-progressive rod-cone degeneration (PRA-pcrd), Retinal dyplasia/Oculoskeletal dysplasia 1 (RD/OSD), Cystinuria, Hereditary nasal parakeratosis (HNPK), Hyperuricosuria, Narcolepsy, Pyruvate kinase deficiency (PKD), Degenerative Myelopathy (DM), Skeletal dysplasia 2 (SD2), Elliptocytosis, Myotubular myopathy 1 (MTM1), and Progressive retinal atrophy- cone-rod dystrophy 4 (PRA-crd4). We also guarantee they will be clear of the dilute gene (D Locus). 

This guarantee also applies to puppies sired by our studs! Our studs will NEVER produce an affected puppy!

WE STAND BEHIND OUR PUPPIES. If at any point you can no longer care for your Puppies4home puppy or dog, we will always welcome him/her back or help you find it new appropriate home. We don’t want any of our puppies to ever end up in a shelter. We love each and every Puppies4home puppy from the moment it is born until the day it crosses the rainbow bridge.