Breeding Anatolian Shepherds:
1) You need to understand the breed before you have puppies to place. I would suggest that you have a few years of owning and adult Anatolian so that you are very familiar with the breed's growth patterns, maturity rate, and behavior characteristics. As a breeder, you will be asked lots of questions and will be sought out for advice and guidance from new puppy owners whose dogs are pets /companions as well as working to protect stock. You will need to have a good understanding of the breed not only so that you can provide good advice to new puppy owners, but also so you can educate prospective buyers and help them to make an informed decision about whether an Anatolian is the right breed for them. Learn everything there is to be learned about the breed, its issues, the facts and the fallacies, then you will be better prepared to deal with breeding.
2) Join one or more of the Anatolian clubs that publish newsletters, which will help to give you a better understanding of the breed. Issues about temperament, health, structure, working, breeding, living with an Anatolian are all addressed in the newsletters.
The Anatolian Shepherd Dogs International (ASDI) is the parent club of the
United Kennel Club -all breeders must follow a Code of Ethics. Newsletter
3 times a year: http://www.anatoliandog.org/membapp.htm
The Anatolian Shepherd Dog Club of America (ASDCA) is the parent club of
the AKC with a 3 times a year newsletter. http://www.asdca.org/
3) Join the Anatolian-List http://www.anatoliandog.org/asd-l.htm and the Livestock Guardian Dog-List http://www.anatoliandog.org/lists.htm#LGD-L on the internet, which will give you a forum for getting to know other anatolian and LGD owners and help educate you about the breed.
4) Because the Anatolian is a large, independent thinking, livestock guardian, they are not the dog for everyone and are very difficult to place. With such "negatives" as digging, the need for excellent fencing and space, an independent nature requiring a firm strong owner, inadvisability of being off leash in public, protective guardian behaviors toward family guests and a requirement of early and extensive socialization, most folks who inquire about the breed will decide that it is not the breed for them. Can you screen the right types of people to be responsible for them?
5) Have you had the parents of your future puppies thyroid levels tested? As well as had their hips checked and rated by the Orthopedic Foundation for Animals? This is very important. As a breeder, your goal is to improve the breed and you do you not want breed from unhealthy dogs nor dogs without the proper temperament.
6) Where will potential puppy buyers come from? How and where will you advertise and sell your pups? You should have at least half of your upcoming litter sold before the pups are born.
put together a contract which will provide guarantees for the new owner?
8) Would you be able to give customer information and support about the dog, registration, the breed and its history, training, trouble shooting, and address the unique qualities of the dogs as well as issues about their health?
if a buyer has raised their dog improperly and it kills the buyer's stock? Or it
keeps digging out and getting into trouble with stock or other dogs? What if it
bites someone's child because the owner didn't understand about being alpha or
thought that LGDs should be raised "hands off".
10) They are very big dogs. What if you buy a bloodline that throws a lot of crippled or sick dogs? What kind of health problems do you look for and where can you look up information on these dogs?
11) What if after all your planning, the puppies don't sell (this is common- some breeders have sometimes had pups aged 8 months to over a year in age). Can you support having 3 to 6 or more 60+ pound untrained puppies at the same time if you have no pens to control them? What if they maul each other? What if they are gang chasing your animals all over the place? What if one kills a goat and you don't know which pup did it?
12) You are responsible for the puppies that you bring into the world and you must be willing to take misplaced puppies back. Anatolian rescue is full of dogs which did not do well in their placements for whatever reason. Despite careful scrutiny and telling folks the down side of owning an Anatolian, breeders do make errors in judging placements. Most responsible breeders do have older dogs that have come back and are in need of rehoming. Are you able to accommodate older dogs that have been returned to you?
13) Of course there are unethical and irresponsible breeders who do not tell new owners about the negatives of the breed and who do not take misplaced pups back. Those are some of the dogs you can see on the Rescue web pages. Recently 2 pups were gassed to death by their owner, because they were chasing the stock. As a future breeder, how would you have handled/prevented such a situation?