Note: we will not have any chocolate puppies for a few more years.
We do not have puppies available at this time. Please check back in fall 2023!
Last updated: 2/17/2023
We typically raise 1 or 2 carefully planned litters per year, and are selective about the homes that will welcome our puppies. Families should be prepared to wait several weeks if not months to prepare for their new puppy. If you are interested in a puppy, and think you might be a good match, the first step is to read this page, then contact us for more information and a questionnaire. Email is the best way to get in touch with us initially: RussfordLabradors@yahoo.com. Be prepared to share information about your family and answer questions - we want to be sure our pups are going to the best homes.
Please keep in mind that Russford Labradors is a family hobby, not a business. We have no kennel, and all of our dogs live in our home as members of our family. We spend months (sometimes years) planning every breeding, and our lives are put on hold while we raise each litter of puppies. A tremendous amount of money and time is invested into each of our litters, even before they are ever conceived. The price of a well-bred puppy from health-tested and temperament-tested parents that is raised in a loving and experienced home will reflect this investment. No matter where you purchase your puppy, you will be making a 10-15 year commitment, so our advice is to shop wisely!
Information on our puppies:
All of our dogs are bred to the one Breed Standard, and are commonly called the "English" style versus the "American" field style Labrador (although there is only one single Breed Standard). Click here for information on the differences.
All of our puppies are sold on AKC Limited Registration (no breeding rights) to pet homes.
We do not place puppies directly with families as service dog prospects; instead, we recommend families in need of a service dog contact a reputable service dog organization.
We do not sell puppies online, and we do not ship puppies; all families must be willing to come pick up their puppy in person.
We spend a great deal of time raising our puppies using methods from the Puppy Culture program for rearing and socialization. We believe this program offers an advantage to our puppies and their families, by shaping and developing our puppies' personalities in positive ways at a very young age. Prospective families are encouraged to learn about and continue with the Puppy Culture program after their puppies go home.
We will always take back any dog of our breeding at any time, no questions asked.
All puppies are appropriately vaccinated and dewormed, with a health certificate from a Veterinarian. Our puppies are microchipped, and have their chips registered for life before going to their new homes. Our puppies go home with a free 30 day trial of pet health insurance from Trupanion (depending on state law) and are AKC registered on Limited Registration. We provide families with extensive information on feeding, training, and socialization, and we will always be available for questions, concerns, and support for the lifetime of every puppy.
We carefully select the sire and dam of each litter based on conformation, temperament, pedigree, and health. Before breeding, our girls have OFA health clearances for hips and elbows, an echocardiogram heart clearance, and their eyes cleared by a canine ophthalmologist at a minimum, in addition to extensive DNA testing. We are happy to provide copies of our dogs' clearances to interested families.
PLEASE NOTE that we spend a great deal of time matching our puppies to the families they are best suited for based on their temperament and personality. We do not allow families to come pick out their puppy. In our experience, what families can observe in one, or even multiple visits is simply not comparable to what we have observed 24/7 over the course of two months or more in each puppy. Additionally, our goal with each litter is to keep a puppy for ourselves to continue in our program, and so all puppies are continually being evaluated for that purpose. This method of matching puppies and families has been very successful for us.
Here is a link by another breeder that sheds more light on this policy
And here is an article on "The Tragic Myth of Being 'Chosen' By a Puppy"
Click on the following links to learn more about our philosophy in breeding:
"I Don't Want a Show Dog, I Just Want a Pet"
"The Economics of Purebred Dogs"
"Why Genetic Testing is Important in Labradors"
Why we do NOT remove Dew Claws
Information on the health risks associated with Early Spay & Neuter.
Why we require our puppy families wait to spay/neuter until dogs are fully grown (minimum of 18 months). If families are not comfortable with, and willing to advocate for their puppies by waiting until this time frame, we are not the breeder best matched for that family.
1. Risks of Early Spay & Neuter
2. Spay - Neuter Considerations
3. Long-Term Health Risks and Benefits of Spay/Neuter
4. The Question of Neutering and at What Age
Please understand that we do not allow visitors to the home when we have a litter of puppies, out of an abundance of caution for the health of our dogs. Once a litter is born, families will be able to meet their puppy at a scheduled pick-up time. Young puppies have fragile immune systems, and we do not risk bringing in any outside diseases that could threaten the health or the lives of our dogs and unvaccinated puppies. We will however provide lots of pictures, videos, and updates to waiting families; and families are of course encouraged to arrange a visit to our home to meet us and the dogs prior to the birth of a litter. Most recently, a new strain of canine influenza has threatened the health of dogs and puppies in our region. Click here to read about one breeder's experience with canine influenza, and to better understand why we have this policy to protect our puppies.