Lehigh Valley Dog Training & Behavior

Finding the Right Dog

Allentown Rescuing A Dog | Find The Right Dog Breed For Me

This is Linny with her litter of puppies.

    You may ask yourself, how do I find the right dog breed for me? For many Allentown dog owners, the two main ways they acquire a new canine companion are through buying and rescuing. Whichever option you choose, consider doing a considerable amount of research first. Remember that the breeders of the breed you are researching are often the authors of the research you are reading. Dig a little deeper in your research. Many of them avoid saying negative things about their breed of choice. However, keep in mind that every breed has positive and negative aspects. Start by asking yourself the following questions:


  • What size dog will fit my lifestyle?
  • How much hair shedding do I consider bothersome?
  • How long am I likely to be away from home during the day?
  • Am I willing to pay a groomer every 4–8 weeks?

The Pros & Cons of Rescuing a Dog

For Allentown residents, rescuing a dog or puppy is one of the most rewarding experiences you will ever have. Many loving, healthy, and potty-trained dogs need families to care for them. Some of them have already been obedience-trained. The cost of rescuing a dog in the Allentown area lies somewhere between $150 and $500. We recommend setting aside approximately $2,000 for your new dog’s needs. After using a portion of that money, put it back into your dog’s account as needed. A new family dog can become expensive.

When rescuing a dog in Allentown you will need to see a good vet as soon as possible. (Note: Remember to bring a stool sample.) In addition, you should prepare the following items:

  • A Proper-Sized Crate
  • Food & Water Dishes
  • Toys
  • A veterinarian
  • A Leash
  • A Collar

Your new dog will not be perfect, so you may need the help of a professional dog trainer or animal behaviorist. With dedicated guidance, your pet can turn into a great companion in a few days.

Please note that it may cost more money in the long run to rescue a puppy than to buy one from a breeder. When people ask us if they should rescue or buy, we ask them if they are rescuing to save money or save an unwanted dog. For those who answer the latter, we encourage them to rescue.

Becoming a dog owner is a huge commitment that needs to be taken seriously. Should your dogs become a problem, seek help from Marx’s Lehigh Valley Dog Training & Behavior before putting them back into an animal rescue. Animal shelters should never be used as dumping grounds for unwanted pets (484)515-9691

Buying a Puppy from a Puppy Mill

Puppies are undeniably adorable, but many of them come from puppy mills. These facilities are the main reason animal shelters have become overcrowded. Most puppies for sale in pet stores are Puppy Mill dogs. We respectfully ask that you refrain from shopping in stores selling puppies. These establishments should be held accountable for supporting Puppy Mills, so it is best to avoid them.

If you have purchased a puppy mill dog exhibiting behavioral issues, know that you are not alone, and there is plenty of help. Marx’s Lehigh Valley Dog Training & Behavior specializes in training this type of dog. Remember that behavioral issues are more than fixable, and we can turn a troublesome canine into a wonderful family pet.

Finding a Reputable Breeder

When looking for a good dog breeder, it is important to choose one you are willing to visit before selecting a puppy. Avoid those who ship puppies to you. Reputable breeders prefer meeting you and your family first to ensure their puppies are being sold to the right people. They are also experts in breeding only one type of dog breed.

Never buy a puppy if there is not at least one parent on the breeder’s property. The more relatives you find in their home, the better. Most good breeders have a room inside their homes where their puppies stay. Beware of breeders whose dogs stay in a garage, shed, or backyard. The mother dog should have free access to come and go in the puppies living area.

Next, determine whether the breeder’s home smells like puppies or an animal shelter. Thoroughly examine the general condition of all the puppies and adult dogs. Reputable breeders will breed their female dogs only once a year since overbreeding can result in the mother and her puppies having poor health. A stud dog can be bred several times a year with no ill effect on him or his offspring. The dam and sire (i.e., mother and father) should have no family relation to each other.

Several red flags to look out for include:

  • Puppies staying outside the breeder’s home.
  • Puppies having more than a small amount of poop and pee in their quarters.
  • Being shown only one puppy that looks like it just had a bath.
  • Puppies shying away from strangers.
  • Older relatives of the dogs living in cages.
  • Things that look or smell questionable.

Things Reputable Breeders Are Expected to Do

  • Engage in a lengthy phone conversation with you.—They interview you before showing you their dogs and expertly answer all your questions.
  • Show you the adult dogs related to the puppies you are planning to buy.—You should be able to personally meet and interact with the puppies’ mother or father. This lets you check if the dam or sire is present in the breeder’s home and if they have good temperaments. Poor-tempered dogs should never be bred.
  • Assist you in picking the right puppy.—Good breeders have a thorough understanding of the different temperaments of each puppy in the litter.
  • Provide their dogs with plenty of high-quality food.—Puppies that only get enough food to sustain themselves will likely come to your home with poor food behaviors.
  • Show you how to properly hold a puppy and watch you closely as you handle the young dog.
  • Let your new puppy stay with them for a few extra days if you will be on vacation or out of town.
  • Refuse to sell a puppy if it will be gifted to a person who did not ask for one.
  • Prioritize meeting you and your family before their puppy is transferred to your home.
  • Have all their American Kennel Club (AKC) paperwork in order by the time their pups are 8 weeks old.—The AKC has clear rules about buying puppies before their registration is completed. However, the rules do not protect you as the buyer. For your convenience, the official website of the AKC has a classified section directing you to local breeders who have puppies. Not all breeders listed on this site are reputable, but many are. The AKC does not check on breeders in person.

We wish you the best of luck finding the right dog for you and your family. Feel free to call Marx’s Lehigh Valley Dog Training & Behavior at 484-515-9691 for more information.