~ AKC says this about the current market
As a follow-up to our initial breeder security email, we’ve assembled new resources to help you better protect yourself on AKC Marketplace.
For the past three months, AKC Marketplace has continued to capture record-breaking traffic from active puppy seekers. This surge in visitors has led to an increase in scammers looking to take advantage of both breeders and puppy seekers alike.
To learn more about how scammers gain access to breeder accounts, read the latest Expert Advice article, “Breeders Beware: Puppy Scams on the Rise.”
Well, it is undoubtedly true that we have received more inquiries than ever before. If anyone happens to see an OwyheeStar puppy listed for sale anywhere but directly from us, we know it is a scam. That has happened before–I contacted the listing and notified them, but what a hassle. We would not want to have someone get cheated thinking they were getting a pup from us–when it was as a scam.
While there is a steady stream of inquiries (which takes considerable time and energy to keep up with), a lot of these are not going anywhere. People are in a hurry for a puppy. The reality is we cannot make an endless number of pups. What we do takes time, energy, and costs us on nearly every level. It is our joy, but there are limitations.
We receive a lot of inquiries
We thank you for your interest. We make every effort to answer each person in a timely manner. We hope to accommodate your wants, needs, and whatnot (if it turns out you are our kind of person). We realize from the other side of the fence; folks who are watching are sizing us up as well. Everyone is skeptical these days. It may, or it might not, surprise you that we get bogus inquiries trying to trip us up–scam-artists are everywhere. These folks can use different ploys to attempt to trick us into accepting fake funds in exchange for a puppy, or possibly wreak havoc on the payment process where they end up with cash in their pocket. If only, these scam-artists put the same work into making a living, they could do so honestly. It is a sad that honesty, integrity, and trust cannot be the expected norm, but everyone has to be on guard.
Inquiries come in all shapes, sizes, and for various reasons.
The reason people find us may include, but is not limited to:
- The need for a new dog, due to the loss of a former beloved pet.
- They are seeking a second dog.
- They moved out, and are seeking the first-ever dog.
- They are coping with the loss (or the impending loss) of a beloved Weimaraner.
- They have always wondered about the Weimar, and are curious about the breed
- They met a Weimaraner for the first time, and it captivated their heart.
- Someone they know, has an OwyheeStar Weimaraner. They told them to contact us.
- They are a hunter, and want a versatile hunting dog that fits well into his or her lifestyle.
OwyheeStar Stalkers on the Horizon
We love the notes that start off with the secret admission that they have been stalking us for sometime now. We know these folks are out there. The recorded hits, traffic, and visitor stats are often shocking. We sometimes ask ourselves, Who are these people?” Then we realize some are unknown at this point in time, some are interested bystanders, and without a doubt some are clients spanning a twenty-year period. We have made friends, and garnered fans across the globe. Here are a few of the more recent comments found in an inquiry….
“I’ve had you in my favorites for a couple of years.”
“I have been following you, and reading your blog for three years.”
“I contacted you five years ago, and I have had you on the radar since then.”
What we can and cannot do
We answer every inquiry. If you do not hear from us, there is something wrong. Most people would attest to the fact that we reply within the same day to our inquiries, and often within minutes. If possible, we send a quick note back almost immediately. You can expect to hear from us within 48 hours, regardless of what is happening. Even in the midst of a computer snafu, we check the webmail, and take care of our clients and inquiries. One thing we cannot do is follow up with every inquiry indefinitely. Countless persons ask us to keep their name (phone number, and email) and to contact them when we get something. Imagine for a moment, the arduous task it would be to sort through and contact more than a hundred people when you have a litter born. All types of responses follow the effort.
By the time you get back to these people who wanted a puppy, some have gotten a puppy elsewhere or decided they are not getting one at all. They never thought to tell us. Some of these folks cannot afford a puppy right now, or they are not at a place where they can add the puppy. They want to be kept in the loop so when they are ready they will know if we have a puppy available. Simply put, there are not enough hours in any given week to spend the time chasing prospective clients.
We have a waiting list.
Our waiting list only includes those folks that have completed the application process, and given us a small waiting list deposit ($25) after they receive an approved application. The deposit eventually applies toward the cost of the puppy. Many breeders are asking for larger amounts (normally the full puppy deposit) up front to deter people who are not all that interested–or serious about getting a puppy from them. We want to hit a balance between limiting time spent with people who are shoppers (and potential clients), and getting them the information they need. Nevertheless, there are only so many hours in a given day. A person must choose to use them wisely. For these and other reasons, we have our information put together (ready to share) in pre-fabricated emails, and other links. This is the only way we can ensure everyone will receive the same information. We want to be consistent. Then too, we cannot type out all those detailed answers repeatedly; it is not doable. For some people, this is a deal-breaker. We apologize, but it is a reality.
We cannot control what is born.
We use the waiting list, to point us in the right direction. It gives us invaluable information, about wants and needs. This allows us to aim accordingly. Nevertheless, we cannot control the number of pups born. In addition, we cannot guess, or control, the sex of the pups. Some litters will produce blue and silver or gray pups. In these situations, we cannot control the number of blues, grays, or silver-gray pups born. Over the years, we have monitored this closely, and even with the same parents, the variances are unpredictable. We have the ability to raise an all-blue litter, or an all-gray or silver litter. This takes planning, and normally what works the best is a mix of coat colors. On occasion, we use a longhair, and we mate them to a smooth coat. Many people fear their Weimaraner puppy that appears to be smooth-coated will later become a longhair. Nothing could be further from the truth. A mating between a longhair and another Weimaraner that doesn’t carry the longhair marker, will produce all smooth coats. A mating between a longhair and a longhair-carrier, will produce some longhair pups. One year we got three longhairs in a litter of either pups, and the next we got six longhair in a litter of eight pups. A lot of what happens, takes planning, but much of the outcome is a wait-and-see situation.
This is a brief explanation of what we can and cannot do.
If you are a stalker, that wants a puppy in the near future, we recommend you get on the waiting list. If you want to keep your options open, then you will have to wait and see if we have any pups available. Our waiting list clients get priority. We give preference in the order deposits are received. There are other considerations as the process unfolds. Some pups may better suit one family than another, and that also plays into the equation. Regardless, we are looking for win-win situations. Most of our clients become our friends, and stay in contact with us. Some do so more frequently than others. Many come back for another OwyheeStar Weimaraner, or send us referrals. We truly appreciate our loyal OwyheeStar extended Weim-loving family. We realize that some of this requires a measure of trust. Thank you for trusting us to do what is right (when no one is looking). Thank you for following us, or for staying in touch. Thank you to the stalkers who follow along as well. We are tickled-pink to call so many of our readers also our friend. We are honored to provide some of you with a family member that brought you joy. (Yes, we know about the Weim-antics that come along in the package deal.) We think of it as the entertainment package.