Pup from accidental litter - special considerations?

Breeder of a relatively rare breed (1-2+ year wait lists in US) I’m interested in has an accidental litter available - a daughter x father breeding. In looking only for a companion / pet with zero intention to breed or show, would you consider taking a pup from such a litter?

Would you expect the same health warranties to hold?
Would you expect a price discount vs planned litters?
Any other differences or considerations to account for in such a situation if you were to take a puppy?

What health testing is appropriate for this breed and what has been done for both father and daughter?

I don’t know that I would expect a ‘discount’ because either an unplanned breeding or potential ‘pet’ vs show.

I’d be looking for full disclosure of any health or potential genetic issues with both parents as you are now doubling up on possible future problems.

Are you willing to deal with a puppy or adult that ends up with a problem vs just giving it back to the breeder?

Are you SURE you want to consider a puppy from this breeder? An accidental cover is unfortunate but every responsible breeder I know would terminate the pregnancy.

I know it’s tough waiting for a puppy, but this sort of thing would probably cross the breeder off the list entirely for me, never mind taking one of these oops babies :-/


I don’t know details yet of the accident (only brief email received with promise of more information to come) - I do know (from FB stalking) that they’ve had a very tough second half of 2020 so at the moment I’m giving benefit of the doubt that the accident was discovered too late in the game due to a lot going on in their lives. But I don’t know enough about dog breeding and terminations to know if this is being too generous.

Both dogs have been tested for standard things within the breed (eyes, hips, elbows, heart, thyroid, HUU). I also don’t know enough about genetics to understand what the associated risks are with first generational inbreeding like this.

To answer @Where_sMyWhite Q re price discount: I see no issue paying same price for pet vs show animal. I do struggle a bit paying same price in accidental (non-registerable) vs planned litter. Paying to cover the immediate medical/upkeep costs of the litter make sense to me. However most litters also have built in some margin to cover costs of showing and testing the parents, breed club membership and registrations, general business costs (social media, marketing, etc for the kennel), as well as pure profit margin. Those are some of the costs that I have a harder time wrapping my head around them being factored into an (unregister-able) accidental puppy cost.

I think you are being too generous in considering this. An unplanned litter is a really egregious thing and speaks to just a wow level of unprofessionalism.

Life is life and things can happen to us all, but if this breed is so in demand, and this breeder is so in demand, I’d expect nothing to be said, and the puppies to be given away to friends on spay/neuter contracts.

An unplanned litter being advertised out to all (?) just so reeks of backyard breeder :frowning:

If you do want to consider moving forward, definitely confirm all the testing. Is the bitch over 2? She can’t be OFAd until then. If anything is borderline, really weigh how that might present doubled up.


Thanks Simkie, this is helpful.

No advertising has been done. I connected with the breeder several years ago, life got in the way of actually getting a puppy for a couple years. I reached out to let her know we were serious about a pup again and to inquire about 2021 litters to get on a waitlist. She came back that they did have pups now but only for pet-only homes, which we had previously stated is our preference (which is less common for this breed as most want to be able to register with NAVHDA).

She is usually active on social media with litters / updates and there was no mention (first clue) and then in checking dam & sire made the connection that this was clearly accidental.

Bitch is coming 6 and this is her third litter (assuming 2 publicly announced ones are her only priors).

Again - so far I’ve only had ~2 lines of communication just stating pups were available, cost, and parents and that came from her mobile email. I plan to schedule a call to discuss specifics if we move forward but first wanted to explore should I even consider a pup, what I should be aware of if I do actually consider taking a pup, and what additional questions I should be asking in getting more information. The health risks are helpful and I’ll ask for actual test results (right now website pages jsut say “Good” or “Normal” – I’m assuming quant ranges lie behind those)

Those details are helpful and hopeful. Less concerning that you didn’t get this news in an unsolicited sort of email.

Obviously still less than ideal, though! Also seriously consider the temperament of the sire and dam, and how that might come out doubled. A little timid might be fine once, but timid x timid might get you a reactive fear biter, for example. Think about it not just from the “inbred” factor but also the they didn’t pick this match factor. Breeders are always looking to correct any flaws with breeding, but they didn’t get that opportunity here. Mom and dad might be very nice dogs on their own, but a very poor match together.

Oh, you also asked about price. I’d expect a discount. Free, maybe, but at least not what you’d pay for a planned dog.

Good luck in your decision!

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Oh, you can also look up testing online, it’s all public:


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Are the breeders positive who the sire is?
Does this breed run the risk of DM?
Embark DNA and Health test tests for like 178 potential problems= maybe ask to have that health panel run on the pup before committing.

Just heard more details from the breeder and wow…I was definitely being too generous. Breeding was intentional to, apparently, “tighten the pedigree”.

Needless to say we are walking away QUICKLY and not looking back! Guess we’re on the hunt for an overseas breeder or turning to our alternative breed of choice!

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This isn’t line breeding, this is inbreeding and yes, I’d agree walk away quickly. This would not be a breeder I’d be interested in doing business with.

Simki was a bit more outspoken than I was. A responsible breeder should never have ‘accidental’ breedings. Their facilities, setup and care should not allow an intact male to come in contact with a in-heat female unless planned. If an accident happened, it should have been discovered immediately and yes, pregnancy should be terminated.

You said the pups would not be registrable. I believe AKC will allow parent/offspring litters as well as sibling litters. Don’t know if that is the registry you were referring to.



I’ll call bullshit on their “reason” too. They want to “tighten up the bloodline” but are selling all the puppies as pets? :thinking::thinking::thinking::thinking:

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I’m super curious to know the breed. Perhaps one of us has some connections or leads? The prospect of having to go overseas piqued my interest as I don’t know of many breeds with such a limited breed pool.

Running sounds like the right choice here. Shame on the breeder and they know so, which is why they didn’t advertise the litter.

It’s too bad it happened but now that it has those pups need loving homes. Personally, I feel that if all the usual tests appropriate for the breed have been done on the parents with favourable results I wouldn’t hesitate to buy one of these pups anymore than one of the “designer” dogs so popular now. There is such a thing as hybrid vigour. Have the parents been line-bred? I think if healthy adults created this litter the pups will be healthy too.

…this would be the opposite of “hybrid vigor”


I’m familiar with NAVHDA and their registry, as well as their breeds. So it’s a breed not recognized by AKC, which isn’t a good/bad thing. Just that the parent club does not wish, or does not have the numbers to register in AKC. What breed? I have friends in a very active NAVHDA club who would be happy to give me breeder referrals.

I would be far more willing to take a puppy from an accidental breeding of breeding quality animals, than from a breeder that is deliberately breeding a father/daughter to “tighten up” the line. That’s not a great reason - it’s more like they have a nice stud and they want to breed to him, but their breeding bitch isn’t that great…so they are doing so because it’s easy and convenient and might result in better than her. Rather than work hard to find a bitch owner that wants to use their stud. Or, possibly the opposite - ok stud and nice bitch. But it’s still kind of a poor reason unless the breeding pool is extremely (and I mean extremely) small.

Accidental breedings do happen, and not necessarily only to “bad” breeders. I know of a very good breeder that has had an accidental breeding because he had a bitch who had a “silent heat.” And, as many breeders do - he keeps males and females. So, in that situation, the bitch had not yet been OFA tested but was of age. I believe he may have waited to register the litter until OFA was conducted and passed. He placed several in show homes and some of them are outstanding. Happy accidents, but not necessarily something a breeder brags about.

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Agree - tightening the line is the opposite of “hybrid vigor”.

Although I am not sure there is any real evidence that “hybrid vigor” exists in purebred dogs. It would exist in animals that get naturally culled from the breeding pool – e.g. feral horses with bad feet tend to die early deaths. In purebred dogs, or domestic dogs in general - the only way anything gets culled from the breeding pool is deliberately, by breeders. So, it’s not really a good example of “hybrid vigor.” It’s “selective breeding.”

But, the key is that the breeders have to select for the right traits, for the right reasons. Convenience is never a good reason for selection, although it happens a lot.


Hybrid vigor is breeding two lines closely, then outcrossing by breeding to each other. The offspring (plants, livestock, etc) outperform either parent line, but it’s a one time deal–you lose the “vigor” if you breed the offspring.

Hybrid vigor doesn’t really have anything to do with animals naturally culled from the gene pool. It’s an artificial product of purposeful breeding. I guess it could be done with dogs, but not much point since it’s a dead end in the line. Fine for plants that you harvest or meat animals, though!

Well, I disagree with the term “hybrid vigor” because they are not hybrids. It’s just called outcrossing, which most good breeders do. But, in many breeds, especially rare breeds, there aren’t that many lines that aren’t already related, so while it’s good to go out, it’s not really going out very far.

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THanks all - I don’t want to share the breed because honestly there are only 3-4 breeders in North America which I feel is too high risk for identifying.

I will update that we are now on the waitlist for our “back up” breed, the Small Munsterlander (larger breeding program in the US) for a litter hopefully due in April so fingers crossed the litter is big enough and we’ll bring home a pup in June / July period! Parents are tested, we met the breeders’ dogs, and I connected with a couple owners of pups from previous litters of the bitch (thank you FB stalking!) and they had wonderful things to say so we’re really excited!