Shitty Breeder Websites: A What Not To Do Guide

13 Apr

Here at ‘The Dog Snobs’, we spend a fair amount of time perusing breeder sites, and as such, we’ve seen the good, the bad, and the so so so so ugly.   Based on what we’ve seen, we’d like to make a few general suggestions and as always some critiques to improve your shitty websites.


Buy an Actual Domain

Geocities is dead, people. And Angelfire and the like have been desperately clinging to their rafts for the last decade. I know, the whimsical additions of MIDI music and the cursor that looks like a butterfly flapping its wings followed by fairy dust is just too “kewt” for words but let’s get real here. Not everyone is going to be a website guru, and if you know that about yourself, it’s time to call in an expert. Preferably one who dresses like someone you wouldn’t run away from in an alley, but we won’t be picky. Anyone clothed with a clue will work. A fully functioning detailed website with your own domain designed and maintained by professionals can run you as little as $200 a year. That’s like a single shitty BYB puppy. Make the investment, people.


He’s probably your best choice for a website about rabbits.

Speaking of MIDI….


Absolutely No Autoplay Music

As much as we love terrible music (Okay, maybe only Fang and really it’s only to be annoying) autoplayed music on a website should be classified as a hate crime. You’re going along, minding your own business when your ears are assaulted by some truly craptacular midi piece of garbage masquerading as something necessary on a website.

You should click on this if you have a strange craving for shitty music. 


Just Say “No” to Bad Animation

While researching for this article, we noticed a phenomenon among pit breeders. They all seem to have a burning passion for photoshop. Photoshopped images of their dogs over lightning or flames or some other badass imagery. Do they do this themselves? Are they PAYING someone to do this? We don’t know… but this one is our favorite.

No Dogs on Chains

Or behind fences for that matter. Even if you do have your dogs tethered or kenneled… take them out to take photos. PLEASE. If you don’t have time to take a decent photo of your dog, you do not have time to breed.


Avoid Sparkly Graphics


Generally speaking, inducing seizures is not a good way to entice people to buy your dogs.  Sparkling graphics also don’t make you look classy.  Really.  They don’t.  Instead, it makes you look some 13 year old girl hopped up on Pixie-Stix and RedBull who couldn’t contain herself when designing a web-page.

You’re gonna have to click on this one too. We’re sorry. 


No PayPal Buttons or Shopping Carts

Sometimes, when we’re surfing the internet at three o’clock in the morning, we feel the sudden need to buy a puppy RIGHT THEN. Luckily, with these super handy paypal buttons, we can. Much like buying aquarium parts or a Domino’s pizza… we never have to interact with an actual person. Bad news is, the dog probably hasn’t either. Please leave PayPal and shopping carts on Amazon or eBay where they belong.



No Jesus References

We really aren’t quite sure what being a good Christian has to do with dog-breeding, since most of the websites we found that openly preach about their faith also appear to be quite unscrupulous BYBs or puppy mills.  It makes us wonder if these are actually people of faith, or just individuals who think that by aligning themselves with God, people will trust them more.  While we respect peoples’ rights to believe what they want, using it to sell your micro teacup peke-a-pom-a-poos will definitely earn our judgement.



Adoption vs. Purchasing

Can we just call a spade a spade, please? You are not adopting this puppy. It is not a rescue. You are not saving it from anything except perhaps the horrible life the parents are subjected too… and perhaps being eaten by the breeder (Java black and french vanilla? Caramel Delight? What would you do-oo-oo for a maltipoo? We’re craving frozen delights now. Thanks.)

We can't decide rather to ear them or cry. Or both, both is good.

We can’t decide rather to ear them or cry. Or both, both is good.


Size Comparisons with a Soda Can


While we enjoy Cherry Coke Zero as much as the next dog snob, using your favorite beverage to illustrate the size of your puppies is probably  definitely a bad idea. Puppies are tiny.That’s normal. That’s how they get to live when they’re destroying shit and screaming through the night. We do not need you to pose your super rare blue phantom morkiepomabastard with a can of soda. You’re putting us off our sugary drinks. Stop.

We like how pissed off they look.

We like how pissed off they look.


“Bitch, I at least deserve an iPhone 5”

We know we missed a few, as we were actually beginning to feel physically ill. What do you hate to see on a breeder website. Minions?


35 Responses to “Shitty Breeder Websites: A What Not To Do Guide”

  1. yukidomari April 13, 2013 at 3:42 am #

    you forgot a ‘pedigree’ (AKC or not doesn’t matter) filled with call names……..

    • M.C. April 13, 2013 at 7:15 pm #

      Posted pedigrees and call names are good. It allows you to do some of the research yourself (confirming health tests, tracing lines back to sources, etc.).

      • Andrea April 25, 2013 at 11:08 pm #

        I think the poster meant a pedigree with -only- call names, which doesn’t really help anybody do any research…

  2. yukidomari April 13, 2013 at 3:47 am #

    also stop calling them ‘breeders’? lol all of your examples don’t deserve that title.. more like ‘producers’ .. ‘people with dogs who have balls and uteri’.. etc.

  3. Tiffany Marshall April 13, 2013 at 3:52 am #

    Since most of these sites are of commercially produced puppies & BYBers, I don’t expect them to be too intelligent when it comes to building a website….

  4. Prairie April 13, 2013 at 3:54 am #

    Best sign of a puppy mill (in addition to the Paypal button) is an indication that the “breeder” requires the buyer to purchase a supply of particular food or vitamins *from the breeder* – no reputable breeder will do that, even if they have strong opinions about what they prefer to feed their dogs.

    • Piper Tunno October 4, 2016 at 10:11 pm #

      I greatly disagree with the statement regarding the breeder requiring buyers to purchase a supply of food or vitamins! First, a “reputable breeder” will give a health guarantee….for more than two years. As a breeder, I offer a LIFETIME (10-year) health guarantee. But if the dog-owner puts “junk” in their dog, I cannot guarantee the health.

      Requiring the purchase to be directly from the Breeder? Maybe not. We only require that if our customers do not purchase our chosen dog food, through our site, where we can track the purchases – then the customer must choose another 5-star rated dog food, as rated on, and keep all receipts of purchase. Nutrition is key to overall health!

  5. KinseyBanjo April 13, 2013 at 5:01 pm #

    No such thing as a “reputable” breeder. Period.

    • Joanna Reichert Photography April 13, 2013 at 10:45 pm #

      KinseyBanjo, I 100% disagree with ^ that statement. There are plenty of facts and statistics and anecdotes and testimony to prove you otherwise.

      • Annette April 14, 2013 at 4:49 pm #

        Thank you! I agree wholeheartedly! There are GREAT breeders out there, who breed for health and temperament AND they rescue!

    • Sandy April 23, 2014 at 2:35 am #

      I do not agree with you–there are many reputable breeders who care about their dogs!!

    • Julia July 24, 2014 at 2:45 am #

      Apparently no such thing as a balanced or rational anti animal extremist either

  6. M.C. April 13, 2013 at 7:25 pm #

    Pictures of the breeder’s funny-looking toddlers manhandling newborn puppies as “proof” of their socialization and how well they get along with kids. More like how the breeder is raising their kids to be camera whores and accessories to their operation…

    I also cringe at pictures of dogs displaying obvious discomfort in their posture and body language. Shiba Inu, for example, are supposed to have curly tails and erect ears. I’ve seen so many sketchy websites that display adults with unfurled, drooping tails and ears pinned back, sometimes squinting hard into the light as if they’ve just been dragged out of their dimly-lit kennel for the first time all week just for that hurried shot. Poor things.

    • Kelly January 17, 2015 at 5:42 pm #

      Easy there! Although I don’t usually post them on my website, I often have kidlet’s holding puppies for pics. Not as a “look how socialized they are” scheme though, it’s just the only way to get decent pics of the little devils…..LOL!

  7. Joanna Reichert Photography April 13, 2013 at 10:43 pm #

    Wow, this is like a bloody car wreck. Disgusting but I can’t look away.

  8. Tarzi April 14, 2013 at 3:09 am #

    If you wanna really have fun, you have to look up websites for cat breeders. Even the most responsible of them have nightmareish websites. Example: This is the website for the cattery of the CFA president. Seriously. Man runs an entire cat showing organization, can’t bring his cattery website into 2002.

  9. Amy April 14, 2013 at 3:47 am #

    “Champion lines.” Unless the breeding dog itself is a champion, the word “champion” should not appear anywhere in its writeup. Just because its great-grandmother or grandfather or even father was a champion, that doesn’t make this individual dog an outstanding specimen of its breed. Even the very best show dogs produce pet-quality pups.

    Also, one-year health guarantees. That’s a sneaky way to look like you stand behind your dogs’ health while rarely having to actually prove it. Most major health issues show up after the first year.

    And, on a design note rather than a content note: Frames. Many frames, each with a scrollbar. Dude, it’s not 1999 anymore.

    • Andrea April 25, 2013 at 11:09 pm #

      But Comic Sans looks SO much better when it’s paired with ten scroll bars!

  10. Dana May 22, 2013 at 3:36 am #

    People who claim to breed working dogs and the only “sport” they compete in (if any) is conformation. I’m sorry, not a sport. And your border collies must be bored as fuck with their life of living to run in a circle.

    • Mountain Poodle June 10, 2014 at 1:46 pm #

      Or conversely, people who say that they breed for the “working” version of their breed which apparently gives them license to breed dogs with little resemblance to their breed’s written standard.

  11. Natalie June 25, 2013 at 1:32 am #

    Oooh oooh this is my favorite game! Before I start, may I make one suggestion: that you change the name of this post to “Shitty Breeders and Their Websites,” then do a new post for actually legit breeders who also have terrible sites. Lots of these examples are awful because so are the breeders. Hooray!

    Here’s my list of things that drive me nuts about breeder websites:
    1. Terrible organization. I can’t stand it when I can’t find my way around a site because it’s not laid out like a website! It’s not that hard – have a button for each page, and don’t make one disappear when I click on another!

    2. Not enough information. Hate it when I go to find out about a breeder and all they have are some pictures of their dogs. I prefer to see an “About Us”, a page for each dog with basic info, photos, and a pedigree, and information about upcoming litters, at the minimum.

    3. NOT SAYING WHERE THEY’RE LOCATED. This seems like a no-brainer, but it amazes me how many breeders don’t list what STATE they’re in! Drives me crazy.

    4. Long blocks of text. Paragraphs, people, paragraphs. My eyes can’t handle that, and they’re young.

    5. Old information. If you’re never going to update your site, don’t have one. I don’t care that you planned to have a litter in 2009, I want to know if you’re having one this fall.

    6. Unnecessary information. Sorry, but I don’t care that much about your family, and I don’t want to see 3 pages of photos of your last vacation or of your grandkids. This site is for your dogs.

    7. Awful design. I’m a graphic design student, so I’m probably a bit picky, but seriously. Why do all things dog related have to be so kitschy? These are dogs, not Precious Moments.

    Okay, I need to be done. There’s more, but I’ll end up writing my own post. ; ) Great topic, and great list.

    • H. Houlahan June 26, 2013 at 10:05 pm #

      Yes, yes, what she said!

      It’s like that discussion in the movie Barbershop about the difference between a big-ass woman and a woman with a big ass.

      It is irritating when a good breeder has a shitty website, because you know that they aren’t marketing well, aren’t presenting who they are and what they do clearly, and thus cannot compete with shitty breeders.

      It is comical and then sad and then I drink when a shitty breeder has a shitty website with autoplay and angel GIFs (how did y’all forget the angel GIFs?) and Bible verses and those individual pics of skinny big-headed freshly-bathed puppies looking all shell-shocked and horrified while posed in front of a draped backdrop with props (toys, flowers, “seasonal” tchotchkes), each with her own PayPal button.

      And it is fucking terrifying when a shitty breeder has a slick, professional website.

      Though the puppy mug shots are generally the same. Those fuckers can hire a web designer, but the stench of the rabbit hutch comes right through the screen.

  12. crystalpegasus1 September 19, 2013 at 8:32 pm #

    Gratuitous use of the color pink, THINGS WRITTEN IN CAPITAL LETTERS in a different font/color as if I couldn’t read regular type in black or white just fine, don’t insult me, not a good marketing strategy. Also, as a photographer, I’m appalled by some of the photographs on these websites. I’ve taken some pretty shitty pictures of my dogs before, no doubt, but then again, I’m not trying to sell them.

  13. Jacklyn March 12, 2014 at 5:00 pm #

    Do not click in the link and about sparkly graphics if you have epilepsy. Could cause a seizure.

  14. Gail F. April 24, 2014 at 8:01 pm #

    $4000 for a “Tiny Micro Teacup Yorkie” – please, just buy a hamster. Or, even better, a stuffed animal toy. The ad sends chills up my spine; the way the breeder is pushing the ‘teeny’ aspect; probably deliberately breeds a tiny breed to be super-tiny – ick ack. (I don’t like the opposite extreme, as in anyone breeding for extra-huge big dogs) On a different note, I don’t mind slightly antiquated breeder websites as long as the essentials (breeders’ location, health clearances, credentials of dogs in conformation and/or performance, mention of contracts and something about the breed itself, phone numbers or at least email contacts) are there; it means that the breeders are putting more time into the dogs than into the websites. And I have no objection to music in websites as long as it’s not a substitute for responsible breeding. (and no PayPal or credit card links)

  15. Meredith May 27, 2014 at 9:46 am #

    If some one needs to be updated with newest technologies after that he must
    be visit this web site and be up to date daily.

  16. Christine K. July 23, 2014 at 9:28 pm #

    It always puzzles me when I can’t find the *names* of the breeder(s). Even a corporation says who the president/owner is. I want to know the people behind the dogs–who are they, what have they done, what do they know–and what’s their reputation. Lack of a location is my 2nd gripe–even in the Internet Age, location matters.

  17. Virginia Wimmer August 23, 2014 at 12:40 pm #

    To answer the question about why can’t you find names on websites or states, I think that many people are trying to make sure they don’t get hunted down by Animal Rights people. I personally don’t have my name or state on my website. If you want to find out who I am you can visit my breeds parent club’s website, where my name, state and website are located. In fact, I believe that is how all my puppy people have come from. I also don’t have paypal or carts. I have a contact us tab, where an email comes to me, and I can then have first contact to see if the person is ready to purchase my breed. There are many people who see the breed, want it, but are not ready for some of their quirks. Another reason some breeders websites aren’t the greatest, is they don’t feel comfortable to build their own websites, they “farm” out the website, and then forget to send updates to their webmaster. There are definitely bad websites….and mine might not be the best, but it is not horrible 🙂

    • Rosemary August 23, 2014 at 4:44 pm #

      Virginia, I wanted to second what you said. My dog’s highly reputable breeder removed identifying information for the same reason.

    • Kitdragon2000 August 23, 2014 at 9:31 pm #

      Not putting state helps keep the FARTS away? Im like a couple others, i understand the no address, but state would be nice when i am looking for puppies.

      • Virginia Wimmer August 23, 2014 at 10:08 pm #

        As I said in my first reply, you or anyone can find my state on the parent club site, which is where it should be. I have a rare breed, and most if not all my puppies are not sold in my state. In fact, 3 are at least 5 states away from me. This is the way it normally is in my breed. If you don’t belong to a breed club, then by all means put your state up, but I am positive that everyone who has contacted me from my website found my website from my parent club. I am just saying that I understand why many breeders do not put up their state.

  18. red rabbit October 28, 2014 at 9:55 am #

    Egregious spelling errors. I saw a site for miniature dachshunds that was nestled near the “Rockie” mountains, (They also claimed to be on the West Coast. Idaho is not the West Coast). They linked to a page that must be read by all “puppie” owners. This person didn’t know the difference between “there” and “their” nor the difference between plural and possessive. It was riddled with religious crap. Perhaps less Jesus and more 3rd grade spelling and grammar lessons and some basic geography lessons as well.

  19. Cardinal September 2, 2015 at 1:27 am #

    Dated as this post is, I can’t help but say I think these websites treat the dogs as consumer objects rather than living things. There is a certain amount of consumerism in keeping pets; you get them because you want them, not because you need them. Still, the poor design choices and bizarrely irrelevant information (good Christians = good breeders?) are plain weird. Combined with legitimate marketing strategies such as size comparison–“This teacup is as big as a Coke can!”–and the Add to Cart option says something about how America considers dogs superior to people while also turning them into some fashion convenience to be bought and often disregarded.

    Or maybe they’re all just really bad at web design. Who knows.

    • Jules September 24, 2015 at 4:37 pm #

      I’m also late to this post. I have found that going through the breed clubs is the most reliable way to track down a responsible breeder (i.e. one that treats the animals as living creatures vs accessories). That being said, all but 1 had cheesy, tacky, or poorly laid out websites. One had auto music playing the same song on every page. Another had so many glittery things my first instinct was that it had been designed by a teenage girl…in the nineties. Speaking of which, most of the websites looked like they belonged in the nineties and had last been updated years ago. Once I called one breeder they informed me that the available pup on their site had sold already, and although his site did not have any planned litter updates, he was in fact breeding for the winter.

      Some of these website “sins” however are exclusive to irresponsible breeders: PayPal buttons, scared puppies posed in bow ties, chained animals, Jesus references, and usage of the term “adopt.” Hell, even rescues should use the word “buy,” because at $450+ that is what I’m doing–I’m buying your dog. Unfortunately I have also seen nice looking sites that sell “designer” crossbreeds for $3500+ that are amazing sites: lush, modern, beautiful pictures in high resolution, appropriately placed links to outside sources, and even mobile friendly, allowing you to easily navigate their sites from your phone. I have to date only found one responsible breeder selling quality dogs with a modern, pretty site.

      What I’d really love is a page on every breeder’s site dedicated to explaining the difference btwn a responsible/irresponsible breeder for the uninformed, as many pet buyers really don’t know what to look for because of the constant inundation of information from–everyone, even ppl who don’t know what they are talking about!


  1. How Shitty is Your Breeder? Another Dog Snob Guide to Life | The Dog Snobs - August 23, 2014

    […] a shitty website or a presence on the web in all the wrong ways. … and by shitty we mean like our previous post . We don’t expect world class here, but a slick website with easy purchase options, half-filled […]

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