Not so long ago, a cross breed was considered a "mongrel" and they were cheap to purchase out of your local paper. These days backyard breeders are cashing in on cross breeds by making false claims about "non shedding, allergy free" dogs. Breeders of "Cavoodles", "Bordles", "Schnoodles", "Labradoodles", "Groodles", "Shipoos", "Pugaliers" (just to name a few) try to pass these dogs off as new breeds by giving them fancy names. They choose a crossbreed combination that will fetch them a higher price. Some of these crossbreeds are selling for over $1000 in petshops! This high price tag comes with no health guarantee or lifetime backup of care.
Unlike registered breeders, designer dog breeders (also referred to as backyard breeders and puppy farms) force their poor dogs to breed all year round to supply customer and petshop demand. These dogs and new mothers with puppies are often kept in appalling conditions (see photo above) and get little human interaction. These puppies are simply bred for a profit and sell easily because they are cute and fluffy. You will find many of these puppies in pet shops and on the internet. It is extremely rare to find a designer dog breeder who does any sort of health testing on their breeding stock, this is simply too costly and they are not interested in the welfare of their dogs or the puppies they produce.
The myth about cross breeds being healthier than pure breds is a long standing one which confuses puppy buyers. These poor little cross breeds are certainly not healthier than pure breds and many an Australian Veterinarian can back that up. They are the ones who see the shocking result of designer dog breeding first hand. The reason these designer dogs are so popular is that they are well marketed on TV and magazines. Many celebrities are also catching onto the fad and buying these dogs.
Unfortunately, new owners of designer dogs are soon finding out that they do indeed shed hair, have unmanagable coat types, are developing health problems that cant be seen when a puppy is young and they have dogs with shocking temperament issues. Some of the many health issues we commonly see in these designer crossbreeds are - heart problems, luxating patellas, ongoing skin issues, eye diseases, hip dysplasia and mis-aligned jaws.
Breeders of registered pure breds have spent years perfecting predicatable dogs with stable temperaments, desirable traits, specific looks and coat type. These breeders have dedicated their lives to breeding better dogs and loving family pets from health tested breeding stock. They offer puppy buyers 100% support throughout the dog's life and love to get updated photos as they grow. They are members of their state kennel club and adhere to a code of conduct. Their puppies are raised inside and recieve extensive socialisation before they enter new homes. They actively compete in dog activities and know their breed better than anyone.
If you are trying to decide which dog best suits your family home, please do your research with registered breeders only and do not promote and condone puppy farming, by purchasing a puppy from a pet shop. The more people boycot the purchasing of these designer breeds - the less demand there will be, therefore hopefully - seeing an end to puppy farming and backyard breeding.