What is a Guardian Home?

Guardian Homes are so very important to ethical breeders!  It is a union of our breed expertise and your loving home! Guardian Homes allow special dogs, that breeders want to use in their breeding program, the opportunity for a fabulous pet life. In every litter there is the possibility of identifying pups we love and want to use in the future to better our lines. Most in-home breeders are limited in the number of dogs that we can care for and spoil, so we look for special families who want to work with us. These families get a high-quality, free puppy to love and the breeder can continue to produce beautiful, healthy pets and show dogs. It is such a Win/Win! This puppy will always be the pick of the litter and as healthy as possible based on structure, genetic testing, and veterinary examination. The breeder will typically pay all costs for health testing and/or showing. He/she will be shown and bred, then retired and spayed/neutered, and will be your forever family member – and you don’t have to wait until they are retired before bringing them home!

What are the requirements to be a Guardian Home?

Guardians must be located within an hour’s drive from Big Rapids, MI although since many of our shows are south of us, the distance could be extended in that direction. Guardian dogs must live in the home as pets, and cannot cohabitate with any other intact dogs. Guardians must be able to take excellent care of the dog (and its coat while showing) and provide a fenced exercise area, or have the ability to provide other types of daily exercise. Guardians must be prepared to partner with us and comply with our breeding arrangements.



How does it work?

You get the joy of adding a high quality pure bred standard poodle puppy to your home for free. I place my pick of the litter puppy (that I would like to add to my breeding program) in your care. You raise him or her as your family member. You provide quality food, health care, and grooming as you would any pet.

Communication is the key element. We will become an extended dog family and will have to communicate regularly while the dog is being used in my program. And afterwards, once retired and spayed/neutered, I hope we remain in communication for the rest of the dog’s life!

  • For example, if you guardian a male dog and are planning a vacation you will need to communicate with me so that if I have a matched female due to go into season, we can arrange for me to have access to the dog while you are gone (or maybe I’ll be your free dog-sitter :).
  • I currently have co-owners, mentees and guardians whom I trust with my beloved dogs and who have proven their integrity. They are always willing to help anyone in the SPFL family so you can expect your poodle family to grow exponentially! They can also provide testimonials prior to your decision to become a guardian. 


Showing: Each dog in my program will attempt to earn at least a championship but some will go on to Grand Champion or further. This depends on the dog and how well s/he enjoys the experience – as well as how much the judges like him or her. I pay for all costs related to showing. You are welcome to come to shows with me and learn and/or show the puppy yourself if you are interested. I’ll be happy to help with grooming as well. Once the puppy has earned a championship, passed health clearances and reaches the minimum age of 2 years old, I will choose complimentary mates. If you would like to pursue AKC or UKC sports with the dog, I will reimburse you for half of the entry fees when the dog earns a title. 

Breeding: I pay for all health testing related to breeding. My dogs are always tested beyond the minimum requirements published by Poodle Club of America and I keep detailed records of my dogs’ health. You will be assured of knowing everything there is to possibly know about the history and genetics of your family member (all things we can currently test for, in any case).

  • Females: I will pick up a female during her ovulation window and then return her approximately 5 days later. I will then pick her up again approximately 5 days before her due date. She will come to my home to have her puppies and I will raise them, then return her to you after they are weaned (approximately 6-8 weeks later). You may participate in the raising of puppies and come to visit often. Females will have no more than 4 full litters (a full litter consists of more than 4 puppies) and then will be retired and spayed and she will be your forever family member, although historically I have retired my girls after 3 litters.
  • Males: I will contact you when I need to use a male for breeding. Sometimes there may be only 24 hours notice. We may also choose to collect and freeze him for future use. After he is neutered, he is yours forever.
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