Boondocks Integrity Blog
1.Why have a contract? For quality reputable breeders, it is to protect the buyer, seller and the puppy/dog. It is a clear agreement for both the breeder and the buyer that both understand and agree to.
2.Are Contracts Legally binding?
To be enforceable by a court, every contract (whether written or oral) must meet several requirements to protect the buyer and the seller.
A. Consideration. Each party, (buyer and seller) has to promise or provide something of value to the other party. Without this exchange, there is no contract.
B.Offer and acceptance. There must be a clear or definite offer to the contract and an unqualified acceptance.
C.Legal purpose. It must not violate the law.
D.Capable parties. To be “capable” of making a contract, both parties must understand what they are doing.
E.Mutual assent. This is also referred to as “a meeting of the minds”. The parties must intend to be bound by their contracts and must agree on the essential terms.
In addition to these general rules, federal and state laws may also impose more requirements.
Each contract is unique to each individual transaction, but there are clauses that should figure into 99% of any dog/puppy sale contract.
As they say, the devil is in the details. The Contract should have price, conditions of the sale, the payment, the return of the dog, etc.
This section is quite clear and there is not much to say about it.
Quite clear also, I accept Cash only on the day of pick up. I do not take Credit Cards, PayPal or other forms of payment.
How dog is to be picked up / delivery:
I do not ship puppies, so it is clear to the buyer in the beginning that the puppy will need to be picked up at my home and the contract signed, all paperwork gone over.
Right to Return:
Every contract should include an X number of days for the buyer to return the puppy in case of a medical defect. In my Contract, I allow the buyer to return for any reason with a full refund.
Rehoming of the Dog/Puppy:
Some breeders want their dog back, if at any stage during their life. I am one of those breeders.
The Contract should include all other Conditions of the Sale.
Neuter/Spay agreement, updated Buyer information (in case they move), etc.
Your Contract should include all the puppy details. Name of Dog, Sex, Date of Birth, Color, Sire, Dam, Microchip Number, & DNA Profile if available.
Ideally, you should have a lawyer proof read your contract. Since I own a Flooring Company, I do have a lawyer on retainer and he did draw up my contract.
The last section of the contract should contain any Health Warranty you offer and your contract should be dated and signed by both parties. I read my contract with the buyer and have them initial and date each section so there are no misunderstandings. After signing, both seller and buyer keeps a copy. I go over the contract, we both sign and then I print a copy for the buyer and place in their 3 ring binder that I have made up for them to take home with their puppy.
Red Flags in a Contract
If the language in the contract is all one sided, to only protect the seller, in most cases the contract is not legally binding. Remember there must be consideration for both parties.
Guarantee in a contract. No breeder can offer you a guarantee, they cannot assure you nothing will ever go wrong or happen to your dog/puppy.
In my last blog I covered Non-refundable deposits, please stay away from any Irish Wolfhound breeder that will not refund your money for any reason. There are a few Irish Wolfhound Puppy Mills that accept more payment options than I do with my Flooring Company. Cashier’s Check, Postal Money Order, Personal Check, Cash, Direct Bank Wire, Pop Money, PayPal, The Square, they will also accept a Credit Card over the phone.
Contracts that contain demands for you to feed a certain food, restrictions to social media, allowing the seller to trespass on your property without your consent or knowledge, generally is not legally binding. Contracts that require you purchase a product such as NuVet Plus for a period of time or the life of your dog is generally not legally binding. If you are sent a contract to review from a seller, please take the time to thoroughly read it and if possible have a lawyer review it.
I have a copy from the largest Irish Wolfhound Puppy Mill in the United States. It is 6 pages long and filled with the most onerous and ridiculous language I have ever read in a contract. I sent it to my lawyer and quite frankly after he quit laughing, he advised he was the worst contract he had ever read. The absolute worst item for me is:
Client agrees to pay MIWR $22.00 a day for boarding once puppy is past the age of 57 days old and has not been shipped or picked up as scheduled. No exceptions.
I personally find this to be outrageous.
Lastly, remember the Contract should be a clear outline of what is required by both parties and it is my personal belief, that it should always protect the puppy/dog.
Deposit – To give as a partial payment or security.
Deposits could best be described as earnest money. Based on this “Deposit” the breeder will have removed the pet from the market.
Therein lies the problem with me and every other reputable quality breeder. Reputable quality breeders, breed for themselves first and foremost, we are not and do not breed to supply a market.
I do not have a problem with the deposit. What I find very unethical and reprehensible is for the person to keep your money for any reason, period.
The following are a few true accounts of individuals giving a deposit to the same person and even in one case paid for the puppy completely. All are out their money.
I have had two not so nice deals with Cindy. The first was when I bought what was supposed to be a pick of litter male in which her stud dog driller was supposed to be the sire. I received the puppy at not even 8 weeks of age due to the fact that’s when her and her partner Dan said they wanted the puppies to leave for the new Homes. I had not even had my puppy 24 hours when I noticed he was not walking correctly. I took him to my vet who told me he felt it was something with his spine. I contacted Dan and Cindy, I was basically told my dogs hurt this puppy or somehow he hurt himself and I did not see it happen. I began treatments with my vet to help the puppy. The only thing they wanted to do is pick the dog up and put him down I would not allow that. My second deal was when she had me give her a 1500 dollar deposit for a pick of litter male out of her other stud dog. I waited and waited for pictures of puppies. Finally after getting the photos I could tell the minute I saw them the puppies back legs looked funny. I told her at that point I did not want the puppy. I asked over and over for my deposit back I have still never gotten it back. Come to find out the puppy I was supposed to get was sold to another family and they had to give him back because after a few days of having him he could no longer walk. Cindy is a very dishonest person and is just breeding for money. I don't even know if her Driller is even the father of my dog as I have heard all her dogs are running loose together. She has really hurt a lot of people by her breeding practices.
To Whom it May concern:
We entered into a contract with Cindy Nunneley Biehler December 2018 to
purchase an Irish Wolfhound puppy. We sent her $700 as a deposit to hold the puppy until it was ready. We received the dog and it appeared to be in
good health, however after 2 weeks the puppy's hind leg started to drag for no reason at all and he could not put any weight on it. He had not been injured and had been in the home with us all day. We took him to the Vet and the Vet couldn't find anything wrong with the dog but put him on anti inflamatories and sent us home.
A week or so went by and the puppy was still dragging his hind leg and unable to put weight on it. Around this same time, we received a call from another woman who had bought her puppy from Cindy and was experiencing the same issue and she stated that she knew of several other puppies from Cindy that had the same issue. We decided we could not care for a lame dog and contacted Cindy and she agreed to take the dog back and issue a refund. My husband met her at a mutual public meeting point. My husband was sitting in the back of the SUV with the hatchback open and Cindy pulled up. She opened the hatch to her car and asked my husband to let her see him. She then grabbed the dog off of his lap and put him in the back of her car and sped off with the dog. She didn't give my husband any time to talk to her, she just hurriedly grabbed the dog and sped off. She never issued us a refund and blocked all contact with us. We are out $2700 and have nothing to show for it. This in my opinion is theft. She is selling unhealthy puppies and unwilling to take any responsibility for it. I feel she is ripping people off and running a puppy mill.
The next account is from someone who thought he had a puppy, Cindy then told him that she left her daughter in charge of the litter and some of the puppies were “mashed”.
---------- Forwarded message ---------
From: Cindy Biehler <email@example.com>
Date: Tue, Sep 11, 2018 at 5:34 PM
Subject: Re: IWH.pdf
To: Jason A
Did you not get my email about the puppies? I lost all but one pup. My next litter is due Oct 8.
Sent from Midwest Irish Wolfhounds Ranch iPhone
On Sep 11, 2018, at 3:11 PM, Jason A wrote:
When can I expect a return on my deposit?
---------- Forwarded message ---------
From: Cindy Biehler <firstname.lastname@example.org>
Date: Fri, Oct 26, 2018 at 2:35 PM
Subject: Re: Deposit
To: Jason A
Deposits are non refundable as the contract states that you signed. You also signed a confidentiality agreement. You have breached that also.
Sent from Midwest Irish Wolfhounds Ranch iPhone
On Oct 26, 2018, at 12:02 PM, Jason A wrote:
I just wanted to give you a heads up that I plan on sharing this with the facebook community as well as posting it on some of the breeder websites I had used to get your name. I am waiting for permission from the person I responded with pertaining to the email you had sent me about the puppy I was supposed to obtain from you. I don't understand how you have the gall to hold my deposit when you displayed how irresponsibly the said litter was cared for. I hope that you take better care of you puppies in the future. You should see this post shortly:
I had recently(June 26th, 2018) put down a deposit for an Irish Wolfhound puppy that was to be born to a litter in August. About a month before I was to get my puppy, I inquired as to the status and well being of the litter. It turns out that sadly the litter did not make it. She promised that I will be in line for the next litter due in a couple months. I couldn't tell me young children anxiously awaiting their new brother that the dog didn't make it, so I started looking at options of finding a different puppy that would be available sooner so I didn't have to share the grim news. In my search to find a new puppy, I contacted a reputable IWH breeder and shared my story. She was blown away by the emails from Cindy Biehler of Midwest Irish Wolfhounds Ranch. She said she was "astounded hearing of such irresponsibility". Based on that and the timing issue, I decided to go with another breeder.
After reaching out multiple times to let her know my plans and request that I receive a refund of my deposit based on the facts, I have not received my deposit, nor any additional communication from Cindy Biehler. I would strongly recommend doing your homework if you are interested in obtaining a puppy from Midwest Irish Wolfhounds Ranch, or any other breeder for that matter. Below are the emails and interactions from both Cindy Biehler of Midwest Irish Wolfhounds Ranch and an actual reputable breeder in the community.
By my math, this person made $4850.00 for nothing.
I do understand that people like to know they have a place on the breeders list, but please if they state that the deposit is NON-REFUNDABLE run away. I would never pressure someone to take one of my puppies, by way of keeping a deposit. To me that makes no sense, you would always resent me and the puppy and no reputable quality breeder wants that.
If anyone has similar accounts of their money kept please leave me comment. I look forward to hearing from all.
Rather fall with honor than succeed by fraud. – Sophocles
Introduction - I breed for myself and I want a puppy that is bred to the Highest possible standard - The Standard of Excellence
Most breeders have a contract that you must agree to and sign when buying a puppy. The relationship between you the owner and me the breeder will be for the lifetime of the puppy. Puppies are living creatures and they are a product of both genetics and environment. It is for that reason I cannot guarantee nothing will ever go wrong with your puppy. What I can do is offer you a Warranty against certain health conditions and before breeding make sure the sire and dam are healthy. The Irish Wolfhound Club of America recommends the following health testing, Heart, Eyes, Hips and Elbows prior to breeding along with Liver Shunt Testing of the puppy before they go to their new home.
My breeding philosophy (personal Code of Ethics) ensures I do everything I can to produce a healthy, emotionally sound and well-bred puppy. I will do everything in my power to minimize the risk of health or behavioral problems through my knowledge of the parents, grandparents. I will provide you with all the breed education at my disposal. If it is something I am not familiar with rest assured I do know people who have many decades of knowledge and I will seek the answer for you and me.
I cannot force you to feed your puppy a specific food, I cannot force you to attend puppy classes and I will not ask you to sign a contract saying that you will. I do hope you want to do the best you can for your new puppy and I would hope you will always turn to me to discuss any and all concerns or questions you might have.
Because I breed for myself, I do not breed indiscriminately, I do not breed for color, I breed always with the Irish Wolfhound Club of America Standard of Excellence in mind. I do not charge different prices for “rare” (there are no rare colors in Irish Wolfhounds) colors, I do not charge more for males or females, I do not charge more for AKC Limited versus Full Registration. My philosophy is clear, I breed to produce a dog that is an improvement of its sire and dam, always with the Standard of Excellence in mind.
I stand behind every dog I breed and I will for their entire lives. I will help you, I will support you and I will take back your dog at any point in its lifetime. I will not contribute to the problem of unwanted dogs. Know that I am responsible for bringing this life into this world and I will remain responsible until the day he or she passes. It is a responsibility I take very seriously.