Skip to content

Posts tagged ‘Puppies’

Ready For a New Dog? Ask these 5 questions first!

Getting a new dog is a HUGE commitment, since he will become a part of your life style–for the next 15 plus years possibly!   So how do you know you or your  family is ready for a new dog?  Here are some questions to ask yourself, and share with family and friends.  We think they will help lead you to a decision, and help build a time line for you in finding your new best friend.


1.  On a scale of 1 to 10, how chaotic is my life/family?

Okay, everyone’s life is as diverse and individual as the clouds in the sky.  But it boils down to how you are coping with it TODAY.   Are you frequently overwhelmed?  A sink full of dishes, laundry piled, too much stuff and nowhere to sit, kids half dressed and being potty trained, if you step on a Lego in the dark one more time you might lose it….We’ve ALL been overwhelmed.  But imagine yourself at 10, because it is going to happen, and stick a puppy on top of it who doesn’t quite know the house rules yet.  The second you turn your back he may be peeing, pooping, chewing, chasing, biting UNTIL YOU TEACH HIM otherwise.  So sit back and think about that.  No dog is perfect, and they all need to adjust and be taught the house rules, even senior rescue dogs.  Do you have the time and energy to add that on top of everything else?


2.   Do I foresee any huge life changes?

Grandma is coming to live with us, we are expecting a baby, we will be moving in the next couple months, I might have to start travelling a lot for work.   All excellent reasons to wait.  You will have your dog for the next decade, it’s not fair for him to have to adjust to huge life changes that you knew were coming.  Life’s unforeseen curve balls are enough.


3.  Am I a dog person?  If so, what type?

Dogs demand involvement, structure and reactivity from you, no matter what the breed.  We have worked with many naturally passive people with naturally assertive dogs and BOTH must make huge strides to come to good lines of communication.  On the other hand, getting the RIGHT dog, if you are ready, can be a great way to self-help.   If you are the type of person who struggles with confrontation, or gets stressed by a lot of activity, a dog might NOT be for you–there are super cool cat breeds that have doggy personalities, but will still be less hands on than a dog in the training department, and be far less demanding.   If you are still thinking about getting a dog there are many dog breeds that tend to do better with a softer, more sensitive hand, or are more independent.  Poodles, Chinese Cresteds, and Great Pyrenees come to mind–and there are many others.  So do your research, and visit breeders to find the right fit, but going to the shelter today and picking the first cute puppy  you see may not be a good idea for you–even if it LOOKS like a certain breed.


4. Is everyone in my household on the same page?

Consistence in rules, structure and consequences is so important to fast training, and having fewer mistakes and accidents.   But this takes commitment form EVERYONE.   Especially if you are just giving in to your roommate, husband, wife, or kids who keep begging for a dog.   Everyone needs to start off, and stay on the same page and all the adults in the family need to be ‘into’ the idea.  So now let’s assume everyone in the family is in agreement about getting a dog.  Yay!  But one partner wants a balls to the walls Belgian Malanios to do competition training,  and the other is more the speed of a retired racing Greyhound(which is surprisingly about the speed the couch goes).  This is where your relationship gets put to the test in your ability to compromise….a great in the middle breed that can be a great team player with an off switch is the Toller, of course, but we are totally biased haha.


5.  What do I want, really?

What is your daydream relationship with your future dog?  What activities do you think you’ll enjoy doing with him?   Ideal daily routine?  How long are you willing to take in housebreaking and training to get there?    Perfection is hard to come by, and you are setting yourself and your dog up for failure by trying to fit him into a pre-made box, especially a rescue dog or one that had a tough start.  BUT having expectations and thinking of these things will go a long way in helping you decide if your ideals are realistic, in addition to helping you choose a breed or age of dog to buy or adopt.


So as you go forward on your journey into dog ownership the next step is where to get a dog, and what breed is a good fit.   Keep in mind that adult and senior dogs can bond just as strongly with you, and can be much BETTER immediate fit than a puppy–who grows into his personality.   And of course, remember that just because a dog is a certain breed doesn’t necessarily mean  he will have attributes you are looking for–if you choose not to adopt, choose a quality breeder and puppy from titled and health tested parents! These are a few things we will hit on with our companion article about choosing a dog, coming soon.   And of course don’t hesitate to leave questions or topics you’d like us to write about!





7 Things To Know Before You Start Looking For a Toller Puppy!

We get countless inquiries about puppies from those who are interested in adding a Toller to their family.  Here are a few things to remember while you are looking!


1.  Learn before you start looking.   Yes, we’ve had people call who didn’t even know the name of the breed.  We love to educate people, but these pups are members of our family.  We pass up lots of people who are willing to pay for one if we feel like they won’t love the breed, or the puppy like we do!

2.  Understand what you will be paying and why.   Our puppies are priced between $1800-$2000.   This is because that is how much they are worth.  The parents of our puppies are shown and compete in multiple venues to prove they have the ability and versatility that attracted us to Tollers.  They also undergo a regimen of health screenings as is recommended by the Nova Scotia Duck Tolling Retriever Club (USA), and some health screenings that are not–just to ensure that the dogs we are breeding are maintaining great health over generations.  This is expensive, and is in the cost of responsible dog breeding.  Be cautious of puppies that are priced way over, or way under the average.  Chances are the quality of health and temperament won’t be there.

3.  If you can’t afford one, seriously, wait until you can instead of shopping.  It took us two years to find the right foundation stud.   After that it was 4 years before our first breeding.  Finding and breeding the best dogs takes time.  Especially if you want the puppy for hunting or performance, we are going to have more great litters down the road and the perfect puppy for you.  Wait for a good one, you’ll be glad you did.

Puppies retrieving birds at 7 weeks old.  From our Dixie/Rosco litter.


4.  Don’t expect to choose your puppy.   We have been doing this a long time–trust us.  We have a good idea by 8 weeks what each puppy’s strength will be, and we know in detail the needs of each potential new family.  In essence, we want the new puppy to be in an environment where he thrives, and we want for each new puppy owner to get the puppy that will fit whatever job they have lined up.

5.  Don’t be picky about markings, or nose color.   Your chances of getting a puppy–at all–go up if you are open to a lightly marked dog.  FYI, for every ‘perfectly’ marked Toller, two of them are usually plain faced with no tail tip, or even mismarked!  In fact, if we try to breed FOR markings we can end up with these Collie kind of puppies with white all over –definitely not Tollery.   So keep this in mind–there is a lot more to a great Toller than markings, and only maybe half are marked with all the ‘chrome.’

6.  We do not sell breeding stock to the public.   Most reputable Toller breeders do not.  Tollers are not easy dogs to breed, from a health standpoint, and doing it right is expensive and takes time–the gene pool is small and they are all related.   Now if breeding is something that may interest you down the road, prove it–get a performance puppy from us and show him.   Prove that you will put the time into your dog by training, learning about the breed and competing.

7.  We might try to convince you not to get a Toller.  Don’t take this personally, Tollers aren’t for everyone–they should be hunting dogs with drives, needs and intensity.   Although our goal is to breed dogs that will make great family members as well as hunting buddies, our Tollers are talented athletes and will have specific training needs.  We want to be sure you are prepared before you get one!  You may want to read this before you decide, The Top 10 Reasons NOT to Get a Toller!


So good luck on the journey of looking for your new puppy.  As always, don’t hesitate to contact us if you want visit and meet some Tollers, or learn more about this awesome breed!


Cash, HR AKC/NSDTRC CH Keepsake's Not Left to Chance CD JH WCX
Cash, HR AKC/NSDTRC CH Keepsake’s Not Left to Chance CD JH WCX





Toller Puppies Sold

All of the puppies from this litter have been sold.? On August 4th we had some new pups born and out of our Nova Scotia Duck Tolling Retrievers, Cash and Dixie! There are four girls and one boy. This will be our ‘country’ themed litter. For these puppies we will be looking for homes where they will be hunted over, used in performance events, and/or live as pets for active families or individuals. We want all of our puppies to live as members of the family and be included in activities you and your dog love, whether it be hunting, canine performance sports, or outdoor activities like hiking or boating. The question is, are you a good fit for one of our Tollers? If you are interested in? putting in a deposit, then please fill out our puppy buyer questionnaire.

adobe acrobat x standard download

Both parents are high- drive, titled hunting retrievers. Click on their pictures below to learn more about them and view their pedigrees. Please don’t hesitate to visit us (and them!) to see what we are talking about. There is a possibility that we may have pups appropriate for first time dog owners, so no matter call to arrange a visit to learn more about the breed.