I get a lot of calls from people looking for a cheap yorkie, or a free one. They are looking to replace a dog they had but don’t want to spend a lot. They want a retired one, or one that is a few months old that is mostly potty trained so they don’t have to bother with that. Of course it has to be tiny, 2 lbs, perfect looks, able to fit in a pocket and be taken everywhere with them. Of course it would be better if it were free.
I will try to explain why I do not breed or raise cheap yorkies OR FREE ONES.
You get what you pay for.
Yorkies are not an easy breed of dog to buy, to breed, to raise and to sell.
You have all heard the saying “Time is Money”.
I put countless time and money into raising the best yorkie pups possible, beautiful, healthy, quality yorkies for you to enjoy for the next 15 years.
Yes, you sure can find cheap yorkies in the newspaper ads and you can find ads online. You can find them for $300 or $500.
But, what are you buying?
When you do visit those places, you will see the quality of care given to the pups, the health of the pups as a whole, and the conditions they have been raised in.
Maybe--then you understand why those puppies are only a few hundred dollars.
When I started breeding Yorkies I wanted the best facility, or home environment for them. I wanted it clean and comfortable, I wanted them to be well cared for and happy, I wanted them to be living in a playful environment and stimulated and I wanted to be able to send them home, very highly socialized and already loved.
Every one of my dogs is highly socialized and loved.
My expenses! Where do I start?
My washer goes all day long. My dryer goes all day long. Never ending loads of pee pads and dog bedding and dog toys! My dogs have a Radio/music available or TV 24/7. Daily cleaning of the puppy areas is non-stop actually. This does not include the daily care of adult dogs.
I buy the best yorkies possible, after sometimes months of researching of the lines I am interested in. I do not buy cheap dogs. I do not just buy any dog off the street. My dogs are a serious investment. This is by no way foolproof—These are not Christmas trees I am growing.
Yorkies are not an easy breed of dog to care for. Some Yorkies can only be bred once. Maybe you can breed one twice if they are small and dainty. Quite a few of them will give you one or two pups. If you get 3 or 4 you are happy with the size of the litter. But now you start to worry. When the litter is larger than four you can be sure you will have to help the mama out with feeding her pups. You will work non stop to ensure each is healthy and thriving and getting what it needs. Mom may have enough milk but she may not. You are at the ready with sponges and baby bottles and a cabinet of goats milk ready to turn into a formula! Momma will need monitoring constantly to make sure she keeps her weight up, her milk supply in and make sure she has no issues with eclampsia.
Work Outside the Home?
Do you have an outside fulltime job in addition to caring for pups? When you are up every couple of hours to bottle feed puppies, and snoozing in between feedings, those weeks become a blur……remember, you still have to get up and go to work! What happens when a momma start delivering when its time for you to go to work? You need a support system in place or a very understanding boss! You don’t leave a momma alone.
You need someone at home who can call you at work at a moments notice when something is wrong with a mama dog at home.
I no longer work outside the home. I am here 24/7.
Care and inventory:
Shots. Shot records. Worming products. Quality dog food. Mounds of clean bedding. Mounds of towels for bathing, and drying. Mounds of towels for birthing! Cupboards with antibiotics and medicines. Teeth cleaners. Toys. Beds. Potty pads---washable and disposable. Pee pad trays. Grooming equipment---a ton of combs, and nail clippers, and brushes, and grooming products—shampoos and conditioners and detanglers and finish sprays, scissors, Oster clippers, Wahl clippers, trimmers—can we ever have too many? Cleaning supplies, and disinfectants. Boxes of plastic trash bags. Folders for puppy records. My medicines take up the door space of my refrigerator. Probiotics. Prebiotics. Pet tabs. Did I mention camera systems to keep an eye on everyone? Oh yeah, dog crates to take pups to the Vets, several crates in fact. Can’t forget my Oxygen concentrator and Incubation unit. My High power dog dryer with the three Octopus arms! Dog grooming tables. Outdoor exercise pens to put together at a moments notice for pups to have fresh air and exercise. A screen tent to put over the whole thing so the sun doesn’t get them too warm. Heating pads, heat lamps, take a lot of electricity. I am sure I missed a lot of items here!
Space! I wish!
Half my family room is dedicated to office space for my record-keeping for dogs. . Filing cabinets, computers to keep in touch with other breeders, prospective new yorkie owners, and to conduct all the research necessary for keeping my dogs healthy, for information to pass onto new puppy owners who have questions of me, to keep records of breeding and birthing, and sales.
I have a great camera to take great photos—because people want photos of their pups every day until they are ready to go home. Do I have time for photos every day? No!
This is not a 9 to 5 job! This is 24/7, hands on all the time.
A good breeder does not make a lot of money. The breeder is in it because he or she wants others to enjoy the ownership and company of a yorkie!
My prices are based on size, geneology, lines and sex, and structure. I try to decide if the pups are pet quality, breeder quality or potential show quality. The larger the dog, the lower the price. The females are more expensive. I seem to get more males than females. I think most breeders do.
Everyone calls for a female. They think they are smarter, wont pee all over the place, and will be better for them. The boys get a bad rap. I love the boys.
Since breeders need to always look at keeping females for the next generation, the prices for females are higher. If someone meets the price, the dog goes out the door. If the price isn’t met, you get to keep the best of the best for yourself. Not an easy decision when its time to keep back, and the car isn’t working right.
Am I cheap? No! Are my dogs cheap? No!
AM I RICH? ABSOLUTELY!
In puppy kisses, and warm lapdogs. In tongue licks when I cry. In tongue licks when they have me laughing so hard Im crying! I am a Yorkie Mama.
Why do I do this?
Because it defines who I am. I am a breeder of Yorkshire terriers. I am a Yorkie Mama. I want people to enjoy them as much as I do.
J. Fortin Yorkies