At this time we do not have any guardians available but are accepting applications.
If you're interested or think that our program might be a good fit for you, please send us a message. MUST LIVE WITHIN A HALF HOUR OF STEVENSVILLE, MICHIGAN.
What is A Guardian Home?
Our Guardian Home Program allows for local families to have a “pick of the litter puppy”, or top notch adolescent/adult breeding dog for free. The Guardian Home puppy or dog is part of the Guardian Home’s Family forever, while the breeding rights are retained by Great Lakes Bernedoodles for a set amount of time (each situation is slightly different so we prefer to work out specific details with each family on an individual basis.) When the dog reaches breeding age, any health testing for breeding will be done at the expense of the breeder. If the breeder finds the dog is not up to the proper breeding standards, full ownership will be signed over to the guardian family and they will be required to have him or her spayed/neutered. If the said dog is used for breeding, once retired, he/she will be spayed/neutered and full ownership will be given to the guardian home at that time, and the dog will remain a forever pet of their Guardian Family!
What Are the Benefits of Being a Guardian Home?
A Guardian Family gets the very best that Great Lakes Bernedoodles has to offer in the Bernese Mountain Dog, Poodle or Bernedoodle! This means that we choose our breeding stock based on the best qualities that are outlined in our breed standard. Another wonderful benefit to our Guardian Families is that their Guardian dog or puppy will be completely health tested by 12 months of age (some tests may be done as early as 16 weeks of age) at the expense of Great Lakes Bernedoodles prior to entering our breeding program at no cost to the Guardian Family. Our Guardian Families get to enjoy the excitement of being a part of our breeding program and seeing the offspring of their very own Guardian dog, be placed with families across the country bringing others the same joy and happiness that they have received from their Guardian Dog!
Is There a Cost Involved to Be a Guardian Home?
There is no purchase cost to a Guardian family for a Guardian puppy/dog. Great Lakes Bernedoodles covers the cost of the purchase.
Our Guardian Home Families are responsible for the general routine veterinary care and wellness of the Guardian puppy/dog placed with them. This means annual vaccines, feeding a high quality dog food, grooming, monthly heartworm prevention, flea/tick prevention, training, regular exercise and socialization, and most importantly all the love and care and attention possible.
Any “breeding related” medical costs for the Guardian Dog are the expense of Great Lakes Bernedoodles. Our Guardian Homes are only responsible for routine maintenance and medical care just as they would if they had their own dog.
So How Does it Work?
Most all of our dogs/pups available for our Guardian Program will be females. Occasionally we will have a male available as well!
If you are applying for a young adult, or mature Guardian dog, she will already come to you completely health tested, and may have just a couple more breedings for us (depending on her age and the number of litters she has had) prior to her being spayed and released solely to you as a forever pet. When the Guardian dog is in season, the Guardian Family is required to contact us immediately. An intact female usually has a heat cycle that will last between 14 and 21 days. During this time, we will need access to her for breeding related appointments. Once she has been bred, she will remain with her Guardian Family until one week before her due date. At that time, the Guardian dog will come back to stay with us throughout her pregnancy, and will be returned once her pups are fully weaned. Guardian Families are welcome and encouraged to visit with scheduled appts while their Guardian Dog is at Great Lakes Bernedoodles.
If you are applying for a Guardian Home puppy, she will come to you at 8 weeks of age. During the first year, Great Lakes Bernedoodles will have her health testing completed. Once we receive all of the results from her health testing, we are then able to assess whether or not she will enter our breeding program. If for any reason we decide not to breed the Guardian Puppy placed with you (this is a decision solely made by Great Lakes Bernedoodles) the Guardian home is then required to spay/neuter the Guardian puppy, and he/she will remain a forever family pet with the Guardian Family.
If you are receiving a Guardian Home Puppy, we ask for monthly photos and updates during the first year so that we can watch her develop, and update our website. We also will require a visit to our Guardian Family’s home every few months during the first year to assess the Guardian Puppy, as well as build a relationship with her for the future. Occasionally, we will ask our Guardian Families to bring the puppy to us for a visit so that she can get comfortable with our home for when she will be here with us in the future having babies.
To qualify as a guardian home for a male, you must live within a 1 hour drive from Great Lakes Bernedoodles and have the dog available when needed for breeding. For a female, you may live further than 1 hour away but must be willing to travel to bring the dog to us when needed.
How Many Litters Will A Guardian Female Produce?
Each dog is individually assesed before determining their required litters. Most of our Guardian dogs will have between 2-4 litters for us (this depends whether you have an adult that has already had litters or a puppy entering our breeding program). Female Guardian Puppies placed in a Guardian home will have up to (and no more than) a total of 4 litters. The health and well being of our breeding dogs is a priority to us, and prior to any breeding, Great Lakes Bernedoodles will receive clearance by health testing and our Veterinarian. Occasionally we may decide to have fewer litters if we have accomplished our goals in development of our Guardian dog in a shorter period of time. Again, this is determined by Great Lakes Bernedoodles.
If you are interested in applying to be a Guardian Family please take the time to fill out our Guardian Home application first and we are happy to contact you to discuss Guardian Home opportunities available!