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Runt of the litter?

Discussion in 'Choosing A Puppy' started by eduncan, Apr 11, 2011.

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  1. eduncan

    eduncan Boxer Booster

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    Does anyone have any experience/ advice on wether or not to purchase a puppy that is the runt of the litter? I have found what seems to be a reputable breeder in my area, she only has one puppy left who is the runt- she kept him behind because of his size and all of his litter mates have already been placed. He is going to the vet today for a check up, and she said she'd update me after that. She offers a 5 year health guarantee against congenital health defects, so maybe I shouldn't be concerned... I just don't want to go look at him and fall in love with him and make a bad descision!
    I just lost my 10 year old to cancer, and can't bear to put my self through losing another before his time!
     
  2. BxrMommieNAZ

    BxrMommieNAZ Boxer Insane

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    Have you made sure to ask and see health testing on both sire and dam? Temperatment testing on both sire and dam, holter testing, etc? If both parents have won in the ring, both have the good solid genetic testing done, and the pup is healthy as of now, then I wouldn't see anything wrong with getting the pup. Just make sure that the breeder is truly reputable and can provide you with all of this and isn't just a glorified backyard breeder.
     
  3. ncwingnut

    ncwingnut Boxer Booster

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    My Libby was the runt of the litter. She was not the last one placed, either.

    We chose her because she had the coloring that I was looking for - fawn (she is brindle, but has limited stripes), lots of white - and she was also the more reserved of the 2. Dana, her sister that is still for sale by our breeder, is a solid classic brindle, is a lot more outgoing and boisterous.

    With Georgianna being 10.5 and having issues with tumors and such, we wanted a puppy that - while we know that she has the puppy antics and enthusiasm - had been socialized well enough that she knew when to back off when an elder boxer was not interested in play or told her to quit. She's been an ABSOLUTE GEM! All she wants to do is be Georgie's friend, and George tolerates her well and will let her know when she's had enough, and Libby listens.

    Our breeder has a 1 year health guarantee, and when I took Lib to our vet, he found nothing wrong. She's grown a lot over the past 2 weeks that we have had her. She may be the runt, but she is still going to be big - I would guess she is going to top out around 70-75lbs - mom was 86lbs and dad was 110lbs.

    So, I would say as long as the pup is from a reputable breeder, that even the runts can be good ones :)
     
  4. ehayes21

    ehayes21 Boxer Insane

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    A 1 year health guarantee really means jack crap, especially when it comes to this breed where problems usually arise after the age of two.
     
  5. Cami

    Cami Boxer Insane

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    So many times people use the word runt in the wrong way. A true runt is a smaller AND weaker, less likely to survive offspring. Just being smaller than its litter mates does not necessarily mean the pup is a for real "runt".
    If that were the case then every litter would have a runt since one of them would have to weigh less than others, even if it were just an ounce less.

    If the pup is seemingly healthy and is OK'ed by the vet then its size today won't probably mean much long term.
    If it is not only smaller but sickly, not eating well and thriving like the other pups in the litter then I'd be concerned.
     
  6. Gatorblu

    Gatorblu Boxer Insane

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    I agree with Mehgan (BoxerMommie NAZ). If you can actually see the paperwork for the testing, I would get the runt. Arabella was the runt and she is as healthy as can be at 4yrs, and weighs just under 70lbs.
     
  7. ncwingnut

    ncwingnut Boxer Booster

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    Well, being as we have owned boxers for 12+ years and have never had any issues with the ones we have gotten from her before, I'm fine with that :) .

    I realize that most issues don't spring up until after 2. We have been very lucky thus far. Most of our issues have sprung up after 9+ years. Sam we lost at 10 to lung cancer, Dallas - we don't know how old he was...he was a hurricane Floyd rescue...to a brain tumor (we know he had to be over 7-8, he was totally gray when he passed) and now George is 10.5 and has mamary tumors.
     
    Last edited: Apr 12, 2011
  8. Furface

    Furface Boxer Booster

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    our Tarka was the runt of the litter. She was the last one left (as you would expect), and tiny. She had to be hand fed for the first few weeks of her life as the other puppies wouldn't let her feed.

    She was the love of our life, and apart from getting overgrown gums occassionally she lived a health life for 14 years.
     
  9. eduncan

    eduncan Boxer Booster

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    Thanks all for your insight... I decided not to get the pup, but only because I found a wonderful young and healthy Boxer at a local shelter!! I am so excited, we just got to meet him today, and will bring him home tomorrow. My only dilemma now, is deciding on a name ;)

    I will most likely bring a pup in to the family in a few more months, once our new guy has gotten some good adjustment/ bonding time in... can't wait!
     
  10. Tuff Love

    Tuff Love Boxer Insane

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    congrats on your shelter puppy! always love hearing when people go with a pup in need. wish i could convince my own dh to adopt!

    on the original subject, as others said, as long as the proper health testing is done on the parents and the pup has been checked BEFORE you take it home. i say this because we just went through this, only it didn't end as well for us. we took the "runt" of a litter- she was the only one left and was significantly smaller than her white littermates, but only slightly smaller than her other fawn and brindle siblings (maybe a 1/2 pound). we were smitten and took her home, only to find out days later from our vet that she had a very loud grade 3-4 systolic murmur. with heavy hearts, we took her back to the breeder. the breeder took her to their cardiologist a few days later and an SAS diagnosis was made. so while it's quite possible that the smallest pup of the litter is just as healthy as the larger siblings, it's not always so.
    i would advise anyone else considering a "runt" to at the very least, have the pup checked before you bring it home.
     
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