We prefer that you pick up your puppy in person, but we will ship to some locations, for some people, during certain times of the year. We can use United, Alaska Air and Delta out of Montana's larger cities. Additional costs include crate, veterinary flight certificate and a travel fee to drive to the airport. We will always offer shipping options to competition homes, ESSFTA members, and of course, people we personally know.
Hellfire springer puppies are sold with AKC Limited Registration and a non-breeding purchase agreement outlining breeder and buyer responsibilities. Unless other arrangements have been discussed with experienced competition homes, our companion puppies are to be neutered and spayed by 18 months old. We hate having this requirement, have always trusted people to make the best choices, but after breeding 20+ years, and being taken advantage of recently, we simply have too. It's a sad reality and we need to protect our dogs!
If you have never purchased a puppy from us before, a standard screening questionnaire/puppy application is required to be filled out in order to be considered for a litter list. We ask questions about your work, ages of your human and pet family, and housing situation. We want to make sure we are the right breeder for you, and that you will provide one of our puppies with the best home we can find.
We have decided we will no longer require reservation deposits. We will accept one if you insist, but starting in 2019 we are going to wing it and keep an "officially on it" litter list...with a waitig list if we fill up. We have a pretty tough screening process, don't offer puppies to just anyone who wants one. Most of our puppies are placed with repeat buyers, so we just aren't that concerned with locking you into one of our babies with a deposit. Do or don't - up to you!
We use Puppy Culture science based rearing, enrichment and socialization methods. Our puppies are matched to families, not "picked" through pictures. We begin temperament testing at week 4, and placement matching is based on a process done over an observation period of weeks. We have been breeding a long time, your input certainly matters to us, we want you to love your puppy, but ultimately the breeder knows best. We release puppies at week 9-10 weeks old, when they are developmentally ready to leave.
Our springer puppies are usually in the $1200- $1500 range, in line with other quality breeders using similarly bred dogs. Prices are the same for males and females. Special breedings with irreplaceable frozen semen, or National Champions, will drive up our normal prices into the $1800-$2000 range. (Stud fees have gone crazy high!) I reserve the right to keep any puppy or puppies I choose, from any litter I breed. Purchase contracts are to be signed, returned, and puppies are to be paid for in full when the puppies turn 7 weeks old.
We love our puppy visitors, especially the little ones, but all visits must be scheduled. My home is a private residence and my puppies are not a business. I work for an energy company, endure a demanding, full time job that sometimes requires me to travel; I also have a busy doggy competition schedule during certain times of the year.
Our puppy tails are docked to proper FIELD length, which means at least 2/3 of the tail is left on. Strong front dew claws are left on both our ESS and Sussex puppies (UK and Euro style), rear dew claws are always removed to prevent tearing. Science has shown front dews strengthen the leg and prevent foot and wrist arthritis as a dog ages, and aid in running and turning...they actually use them!
Sussex Spaniels are a rare breed riddled with many reproductive challenges. They are bred through AI's, whelp with C-Sections, can have a high neonatal mortality rate and stay much longer than the springer puppies. We only breed finished champions that are fully health screened and, puppies are socialized and enriched using Puppy Culture techniques, the same way our springers are. All of our puppies have multiple health checks prior to placement. We have a page just for Sussex information to read prior to contacting us.