Frequently Asked Questions
WHERE CAN I FIND INFORMATION ABOUT THE GOLDEN RETRIEVER BREED?
WHY SHOULD I PICK A GOLDEN RETRIEVER OVER ANOTHER BREED?
The absolute most important characteristic of a Golden Retriever whether it be English or American is their outstanding temperament and personality. The breed standard is for them to be kindly, friendly and confident. They absolutely love everyone whether family member or stranger. They do not tend to attach to one person. If you are looking for a guard dog, do not choose a Golden Retriever. Unprovoked aggression or hostility towards people or other animals is unacceptable. They are not to be timid or nervous but are calm and intelligent. They rank 4th in Stanley Coren’s The Intelligence of Dogs. They are very eager to please and can learn up to 240 words, commands or phrases. Because of this they are easy to train to work or do tricks. They make wonderful hunting dogs, special needs dogs, or guide dogs. They excel in obedience trials. Golden Retrievers are known for patience with children and are good with cats, other dogs and most livestock which make them wonderful family pets.
DO YOU BELONG TO ANY GOLDEN RETRIEVER CLUBS?
Yes, we do! We are proud members of the Golden Retriever Club of America (GRCA) as well as the Natural State Golden Retriever Club (NSGRC) here in Arkansas. We believe that as Breeders of Golden Retrievers, it is important to stay involved in the parent club of our beloved breed (GRCA) of choice to ensure that we are up to date on the latest research and breed standards.
DO YOU SHOW YOUR DOGS?
Yes! We enjoy competing in both the American Kennel Club (AKC) conformation ring as well as the International All Breed Club Association (IABCA).
WHAT IS THE BUYING PROCESS?
We are so glad that you have decided to purchase a puppy from Alabaster Goldens!
First, you will need to contact us to let us know you are interested in a puppy. We have a prospective buyer application that we must approve before going forward with the buying process. This application process ensures that our puppies go to excellent homes and that they are a good fit for your family. We take reservations for 3 female puppies and 3 male puppies prior to the arrival of the litter. We will reserve puppies in the order that we receive the deposits. For example, if you are the third person who reserves a female puppy, you will be reserving the 3rd pick female. If we do not have enough puppies of one gender to fulfill all deposits, we will refund your deposit or transfer your deposit to the next available litter. Once the puppies from your litter are 6 weeks old, we will contact you in the order of your pick for you to tell us which puppy you want. We welcome families to come select their puppy in person or we will have pictures of the puppies and descriptions of their personalities to help you with your decision. ** We reserve the right to keep first pick male or female from any litter if we decide a puppy would be a good fit for our breeding program. **
The litter will be ready to go home at 8 weeks of age. You are welcome to come pick your puppy up at our home or we can meet you at the Little Rock airport with your puppy and you can fly it home in cabin with you. We no longer offer shipping in cargo.
If you are not able to pick up your puppy on the designated pickup time, we charge a boarding fee of $20 a day.
DEPOSITS AND PRICES
We require a $500.00 nonrefundable deposit to reserve a puppy. If there are not a sufficient number of puppies in the litter to fulfill all the reservations, the deposit will be either refunded or transferred to the next litter. If you are interested in a puppy from Alabaster Goldens, please complete the puppy purchase agreement and email it to us at firstname.lastname@example.org with your deposit. Please do not send a deposit until we have spoken and have decided that a puppy from Alabaster Goldens will be a good fit for your family. We encourage you to read over the agreement and please let us know if you have any questions. We do have a waiting list that you may be added to once we decide which litter is best for your family.
The prices of our Golden Retriever puppies depend on the particular parents of the litter. Please contact us for specific prices on the puppy you are interested in purchasing.
We will accept a personal check or PayPal for placing a deposit, but we ask for a money order, cashier's check, or cash for the final payment of the puppy prior to pick up. The final payment needs to be received at least two weeks prior to the puppy leaving our home. Checks should be made payable to "Alabaster Goldens".
DO YOU OFFER BREEDING RIGHTS WITH YOUR PUPPIES?
When breeders register their litters with the American Kennel Club (AKC), they must declare if the puppies will be sold with a limited registration (no breeding rights) or a full registration (breeding rights).
Alabaster Goldens offers a limited registration only with all of our puppies. In rare instances, we may consider offering a full registration for additional cost to approved homes only. The option of full registration will only be entertained if the dog is at least 2 years old and has received their OFA health clearances for hips, elbows, heart, and eyes.
DO YOU OFFER A HEALTH WARRANTY?
Alabaster Goldens offers a Limited 2 Year Health Warranty with our puppies on their hips, elbows, heart, and eyes. We strive to produce healthy puppies at Alabaster Goldens, but in the rare event that your puppy is diagnosed with a defect of eyes, heart, hips, or elbows, you can return the puppy to us and we will give you a new puppy or you may keep the puppy and we will refund a portion of the purchase price to you, depending on the specifics of the situation. We require documentation and x-rays from an OFA (Orthopedic Foundation of Animals) vet, board certified cardiologist, or ophthalmologist vet, depending on the situations.
We will always take back a dog/puppy that has been purchased from us at any time if you are no longer able to care for this dog/puppy. Per our contract with all puppy buyers, we have the right of first refusal of any puppy bought from our breeding program. All buyers must contact Alabaster Goldens first before rehoming a puppy/dog from our program.
HOW SHOULD I CARE FOR MY GOLDEN RETRIEVER?
Here are some tips on caring for your Golden Retriever.
You should take your dog to the vet annually for a wellness checkup and shots.
Your Golden Retriever needs to be on flea and tick preventative.
It is very important that your dog be on a heart worm preventative. Heart worms can be deadly to your dog.
Because Goldens are prone to obesity, they need exercise daily. Their food intake also needs to be monitored.
Goldens need to be brushed weekly (more during shedding season) to avoid their fur from matting.
Clean their ears regularly.
Goldens have a strong desire to be with their owners, therefore they should not be left alone for extended periods of time causing stress and anxiety.
Golden Retrievers are not a dog that should live outside all the time.
Golden Retrievers have a strong retrieving instinct and need to have access to toys at all times. If you do not provide them with toys, they will get into things they shouldn’t.
Goldens have a strong desire to chew and need to be given proper items to chew, or they will chew your stuff!
You should consult with your vet, but I think it is important to spay/neuter your Golden, once old enough. The latest studies suggest that you should wait until your dog has fully matured before altering them. I strongly recommend waiting until your female has gone through her first heat cycle, usually at least 1 year old. Males tend to mature at a slower rate, so you should wait until they are closer to 18 months to 2 years old. It is important to wait until their bone growth plates are fully closed before any spay/neuter. Please research this before making your decision. The University of California, Davis, did a study on this very topic.
If you decide to spay your female Golden, keep in mind that their bodies, hormones, etc. change and they tend to gain weight. Keep on eye on her and her food intake.