Estrela Mountain Dog
Do you have puppies?
Ponta da Pinta
Genetic disease screening and a scrupulous selection of breeding dogs are some of the procedures that make a serious breeding programme very expensive - the reason why the standard price of a reputed breeder's puppies is high. But, in the end, what will become more expensive? Paying 500 or 1000 euros for a puppy that comes from a controlled breeding practise, in which the breeder studied the bloodlines with the purpose of reducing the odds of lethal or disfunctional genetic diseases/defects to arise, or spending 100 or 200 euros on buying an animal who was produced with no criteriae or control of any kind, when it is of public knowledge that problems such as hip dysplasia and dilated cardiomyopathy are not rare in the breed? What if the puppy turns up developping serious, disfunctional hip dysplasia or dies suddenly from heart failure? If such problems can occur in any circumstance, they're much less likely to appear in a serious, technical, controlled breeding.
Several of our puppy buyers have previously been through the trauma of putting their dog down due to severe hip dysplasia, epilepsy, dilated cardiomiopathy, or payed expensive orthopedic surgeries, or even lost them when youngsters, to sudden death caused by heart failure. In most cases, the animals had been acquired from backyard breeders, puppy farms or unscrupulous commercial breeders. After that traumatic experience, the owners decided their next puppy would come from a breeder who cared about health and screened their dogs, in order to guarantee, as much as possible, that this time there wouldn't be any problems.
If you're planning to acquire an Estrela Mountain Dog, choose carefully. There are plenty of cheap puppies, pure-bred or mutts, mostly bred by people with little competence and scruples, whose only concern, in most cases, is purely commercial. They frequently own several bitches and exploit their breeding capacity to the limit, seriously compromising their health. They usually have one male only, who sires dozens of litters, contributing to a dangerous genetic bottleneck in the breed. In other cases, they have only one bitch and mate her to the next door neighbour's dog, even if he's not purebred. They sell cheap puppies, because their breeding itself is cheap and usually of little quality (if the pupopies are good, it's out of random, not competence). If you choose to buy one of these puppies, we wish you and them the best of luck - because, like with a Russian roulette, you're going to need it.