Our Guardian Home program provides each and every single dog that is a part of the 4 Paws Breeding Program a wonderful and loving pet home with a family of their own!
Guardian homes are charged with a very special mission – taking care of a service puppy mom or dad! These dogs help ensure healthy, loving happy, pups are placed with children and veterans in need. 4 Paws was very thoughtful and intentional when they decided to begin breeding their own service dogs for good health, skill and temperament (read more about our breeding program in this newsletter: http://bit.ly/4PawPrintsJun15). 4 Paws locates a responsible, loving home for each mom or dad in our breeding program.
From the beginning the dog is a member of the family. We encourage bonding activities, such as taking obedience or other dog classes with you breeding dog. Like any well loved pet, they need good exercise and lots of play. Some of our families have even joined therapy dog programs and visit hospitals, hospice, schools, and even libraries with their breeder dog.
There are of course very important and special considerations of this program. The dogs will return to 4 Paws in order to complete their role, where they are much loved by staff while they are there. Female dogs are part of the program up to seven years of age for large breeds and up to nine years of age for small breeds, when they are spayed and transferred permanently to their family for the remainder of their life. Females will return to 4 Paws for all breeding activities and to care for their litters of puppies. Fewer male dogs are required for the program and their breeding job is longer than the females in the program, for up to ten years. Just like female breeders, male breeder dogs are a member of their family for life but ownership remains with 4 Paws until they are retired. Male breeders will come to 4 Paws for breeding every couple of months and will stay for a number of weeks at a time for breeding.
What our Guardian Homes are doing for us every day
In short, 4 Paws Guardian Homes are caring for a loving a very important part of 4 Paws. Their work and care touches so many lives. There are special things to consider when taking an unaltered male or female dog into the home, and these families have worked hard to create a safe and healthy environment for their pup.
Families of female breeder dogs must consider how to deal with a dog in heat. When the female will not be bred, families can temporarily return the female to 4 Paws during the heat cycle or 4 Paws will provide sanitary diapers. Families ensure that each of their females is returned to 4 Paws in the appropriate timeframe for breeding, which takes place at 4 Paws. Females return home to their families after breeding, but are returned before the puppies arrive to whelp at 4 Paws. New moms then remain at 4 Paws with the puppies until they are 6-8 weeks of age. Additionally, Guardian Homes are accepting the responsibility of caring for and loving their dog for at least 12 years, perhaps more.
Guardian Homes of male breeder dogs are always taking great care to properly contained to keep them from taking off -intact male dogs are driven by nature and can seek out females in heat to a great distance if not monitored and cared for properly. Male breeding dogs must also return to 4 Paws when requested for breeding, but then return to their family home. Additionally, Guardian Homes are accepting the responsibility of caring for and loving their dog for at least 12 years, perhaps more. Since the breeding life of a male is longer than that of a female, Guardian Homes to our male breeders are making a huge ongoing commitment to the 4 Paws mission by welcoming them into their home.
Our Guardian Homes are volunteers; however, there is minimal expense to the family to become a Guardian Home. 4 Paws provides dog food, a crate, and preventative care such as monthly heartworm and flea control. All veterinary care, including all costs directly related to breeding, such as veterinary bills before, during, and after pregnancy, whelping the puppies and all costs associated with the puppies during their first 8 weeks. Families cover grooming, treats, toys, and other incidentals they wish to purchase for their new family member. *4 Paws will provide the supplies, however 4 Paws is unable to reimburse purchases made by the family.
4 Paws knows that keeping an unaltered female or male is not a decision to make with out thought. Lots of information can be found online regarding unaltered dogs or breeding dogs, and of course we welcome questions!
Convinced you’re ready to become a 4 Paws Guardian Home? Application is at the bottom of the page! 4 Paws often has Golden Retrievers, Labrador Retrievers, Collies, Doodles, Poodles and occasionally Papillons.
Ready to become a Guardian Home? Please begin by filling out an application at the link below. Our staff will review it and let you know the next steps!