New System - "Doberman Puppies For Sale"

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OldAdmin's picture
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So, I've been researching and working on some new applications for our site here on Gentle Doberman. One thing I'm working on is an ad system so breeders can list upcoming litters and available puppies. Here is my question: For people to find the listings, according to my magical web master powers, we need to use the phrase "Puppies For Sale". To me, this a is very off-putting phrase. Perhaps it just reminds me of newspaper ads for $300 Dobermans from breeders who are better at counting money than scooping dog poop. I don't know. Much of our competition uses "Doberman Puppies For Sale". Really, to be effective we need to use it. I don't know, all I can imagine are some puppies tied up in a K-mart parking lot with a For Sale sign hung on them. Somebody talk me in our out of it. Maybe I'll throw up a test on the forum....

Grendelspop's picture
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Joined: 2007-12-31

Hey alpha, for what its worth I think its a great idea, especially if the goal is to compete. I know I could use this information not only for hunting pups but for a who's who and kinda for learning breeders techniques and such. Could the same goal be achieved just by dropping the word sale? - Doberman puppies. Forgive me if this is a BIG RED TRUCK but my web skills are nil  ::)

OldAdmin's picture
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Thanks kruegerspop, competing is up on the list of priorities isn't it. The better we do here the more people we can reach and properly educate on the Doberman Pinscher - not to mention push the shabbier sites further down.

"Doberman Puppies" is also a popular search term that is important to have. It's used more than "Doberman Puppies for Sale". But, it would be best to rank high for both. I imagine some people using "Doberman Puppies" are looking for available puppies, but some are looking just for information. Everyone searching "Doberman Puppies For Sale" are likely looking for a puppy and are the exact people we need visiting here - hopefully before they support puppy-mills by getting a Doberman puppy form a pet store  >:( or from what they think is a lovely breeder but is actually a puppy-broker.

I'm currently working on a new system for the site that will allow breeders, trainers, people offering stud service, groomers, and I'm also thinking of adding categories for veterinarians, to fill out a profile that will go into a directory that visitors can search. Once that's shaped up my next idea, which will work right along with the profile directory, is an ad system that will allow registered users with a profile to list ads for their puppies and services. I'm taking my time though. I'd like it to be a superior system to what's out there.

Any suggestions would be appreciated as would any frustrations anyone has found elsewhere I could avoid.

Grendelspop's picture
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Joined: 2007-12-31

Again forgive me  ;D but will there be any certain criteria that these breeders will have to meet to advertise ? I only wonder what is to keep this shady element from promoting their P.M. dogs here. I believe with that problem corrected Gentle Doberman would be doing better than most in this area!

OldAdmin's picture
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That's a darn good question. Any suggestions? The thing is, I could list all the criteria I want and all a bad breeder has to do is what bad breeders do - lie, cheat, and steal. *Animosity detected* The other option would be charging people. If you make a listing more expensive than the normal bad-breeder medias they'll avoid it. However, we're to small for charging anyone anything to be here, yet. Personally, I'd rather not charge, or at least not as much as I've seen many sites charge. Good breeders aren't businesses - usually - and that's who I want here. In other words, I'd rather have every good breeder in the world listed here for free than 1/4 of them for a charge. Here's my other idea. A rating system like how you can rate books at Amazon. I could write the system so only members could rate the breeder. How would they know unless they actually purchased a puppy or visited the breeder? Then how do we know if they actually purchased a puppy or visited. Perhaps I could write it so the breeder could respond to any negative feedback. We could also require the people leaving feedback to supply certain credentials like when they purchased or visited and so on. The other problem with a rating system is getting it started. But that's a problem with anything. Perhaps we could make certain requirements, and trust the breeder until he's challenged. Eventually once the forum gets more popular we should have people from different areas who will recognize the listed breeders. One of the main things I plan to have on the listing is an area for the breeder's philosophy and guarantees. Perhaps an input for listing references. I don't know. I'm still working this out. Suggestions?

Grendelspop's picture
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Joined: 2007-12-31

Until someone else jumps in on the subject I'll try to keep you amused. What about a system that is not so much a rating system but a seniority system. Where the longer people are allowed to stay on the better the rating .A certain amount of posting time being required to stay active. Then at least you know it is important enough to them to spend a reasonable amount of time working.

OldAdmin's picture
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kruegerspop wrote:

Until someone else jumps in on the subject I'll try to keep you amused.

Thanks.  ;) This discussion is good. I'm starving for feedback other than, "It looks great," and "The best Doberman website". Not that I don't appreciate such comments - I do - they're just not constructive to anything but my ego.

You've hit on an an idea I've been throwing around inside this head of mine. But first, a rating system would, theoretically, grade a good breeder better and better the longer they have a profile. IOWs, assuming a good breeder gets good feedback, the longer he's getting feedback the more good feedback he'll have. Posting in the forum would also promote that breeder - more puppies sold and happy Doberman owners to leave feedback. So, seniority should play a proportionate role in a breeder's rating without additional calcs. I guess I could have a "Member Since" indicator as well. I'll put that on my list.

Here's the idea you've brought up: Forum $$$$
This would likely be a latter implementation, but we could add a system that, instead or in addition to the Karma (which reminds me....),  will issue members Forum$ every time they post. We could then accept Forum$ as payment for having a profile and ads, and maybe even different levels, Gold Silver and so on, with different levels of quality and cost. We could even have a "bump" system where people could buy a bump to push their profile or ad to the top of the directory output (still with regard to search parameters). If we wanted to get really complicated we could even maintain an auction system for placement.... I don't know.

Such an implementation would likely coincide with an actual money payment system. Currently, charging people would cost much more than my meager returns from the ads you see here and there. I would want to make profiles and ads available to people unable or willing to spend time on the forum. Some great breeders can't even send a proper email or build a decent website - so I wouldn't want to squeeze them out. Then there are breeders who simply don't understand the value of online discussion. This notion I simply don't understand - but - I'm a computer nerd who has more online human interaction than actual interaction and would be crippled if I couldn't go to Web Master World or PHP Freaks web forums to ask questions and get myself out of trouble.

Once things get busy enough here, that might be a good idea. I'm thinking I'll charge exorbitant amounts of Forum$ (to reward faithful forum visitors) and meager actual $$$, like 2$ / month (to undercut the competition by 1500%).  ;D

This would make forum contest and all that stuff a lot more interesting. It would also give me the ability to throw around Forum$ to get help gathering article, photos, videos, and other good content for the site.

Grendelspop's picture
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OK, so you've thought about this a little more than I have  ;D It really does sound like a very good rough draft and I cant wait to benefit from it. I only hope that some of the poison and even slander I've seen on other forums doesn't trickle into the rating system here. I will be here daily and look forward to these new ventures, until then" it looks great" and "you are the best Doberman website".

OldAdmin's picture
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Joined: 2007-09-28

Indeed, flaming and slander. These are usually problems on forums that attract lesser intelligent folks than I hope to attract here. As long as a productive atmosphere is maintained it shouldn't be a problem. I don't like moderating forums but sometimes it becomes necessary in the anonymous world of the web.

I'm just glad we haven't been seeing spammers appear. There's nothing like waking up in the morning and finding a randomly placed post in your forum linking it to ~pornography.

I don't think anyone wants to give us problems on this forum - we have too many Dobermans.

iamintense's picture
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One thing you could do is require credentials from the breeders, don't charge them (yet), and rely on the site visitors to give feedback on the breeders.  It will take some time to build up relaible data, but in the mean time, if the breeder is close by, you could even go undercover and check them out for yourself.  When they fill out whatever form you choose to use your site, make it clear that jerks will lose all rights and be removed and that this decision is up to the site admin and can be done for any reason deemed acceptable by said Admin.  You could require references of past buyers and check with them.  I think over time, your site will gain a good reputation as a trustworthy site.

OldAdmin's picture
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I think if the feedback and/or ratting system is good, and we have enough good Doberman people as members, the information we need from different breeders will appear.

I'm still thinking about this. One idea I have is a two part system. One, being a rating system for members to leave feedback who have visited or purchased a puppy from the breeder. Two, an endorsement system were members, regardless of visiting the breeder and based on their view of the breeder's philosophy and information they offer here on Dobermans, can list themselves as an endorsing member.

BigMomma_ah!'s picture
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Maybe you could consider naming the index "Doberman Puppies For Sale or Wanted" that way it would give people who are looking for a puppy a chance to place an ad too. Also instead of having a fee, ask that the breeders make a donaton to the sight and ones that make a donation of a certain amount ($25 or so) can bump their ad more than a non-donating member. Maybe allowing 1 bump per week for non donating member vs 5 bumps per week for a donating member???  Could maybe help weed out the bad breeders.

OldAdmin's picture
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Good ideas MigMomma. My thought is to have a breeder index, and indexes for trainers, vets, dogs-sitters, etc. And in addition to that an ad system that would allow breeders to post individual puppies or dogs as well as people looking for them.

The bump idea is one I've also be thinking about. That might be a good way to get started.  ;) Good thinking. We could allow breeders an such to post their profile in the index for free, have so many adds per month for free - but with a donation get more ads and be able to bump them - or something like that.

Regardless, we could then us the donations to buy ad elsewhere online and get more people seen the ads and profiles here.

VonDoom's picture
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its good to see your concerned about who would and wouldnt use your system. unfortunatly or for that matter fortunatly  a good breeder will never need a Board such as this one to advertize litters. My own personal opinion would be that as far as i can see that Forum is the only thing i dislike about your DB. Educate, let your members discuss and debate breeders but dont lower your self to becoming a puppy peddling board. I myself Breed Dobermans and health test and of course compete for title with my dogs. I also am an Administrator of another Doberman Forum and i dont even have my own website connected to my forum. As far as competitors go just be different and be better. Dont let your members get attacked for having an opinion. be proactive rather then reactive. Be a community dont allow this board to turn in to a group od cliques. In other words if you have a member with a large ego that dosent fit thru the door. show em the door. Personally i worry less about my Forum competitors then i worry about the future of the breed.

Anyways no disrespect meant. Just some friendly advice from one forum admin to another. Good Luck in your endevers

Grendelspop's picture
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I'm Sorry Vondooom but I disagree, I think it is a good Idea because if members are posting their litters here that also means that potential buyers can go back and learn a little bit about who they are buying from by reading all their past post. It is just too easy for shady breeders to make themselves look all fuzzy on their own site. Here at least you can read some of their views and opinions before diving into a decade long commitment. Also some people go on these forums specifically looking for puppies. It's just one more option for buyers to research breeders. I'm sure your right about good breeders not needing to post on here to sell puppies but some breeders that just happen to be here already may choose to do so in order to know the people who are getting those puppies or at least feel well enough to give one to someone that cares enough to have been active in a Doberman forum.    

AlphaAdmin's picture
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Really good point Grendelspop.

Soleil's picture
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I disagree with the idea that posting breeder ads would become "puppy peddling" ... I love the idea the breeders post on this forum.  The fact that they are so willing to inform people about the breed and help and offer support for fellow dobie owners who are not even past clients speaks volumes.  If I was looking for for a Dobie this is where I would start.  Not only can I see that a particular breeder cares about the puppies think it can give you a glimpse of how they are in practice. It is not just a 'Breeder philosophy" that is typed and posted somewhere on the internet.  It easy to lie once but they would have a hard time keeping up the front on a site that asked or rewarded them for being active posters. 

"Ufortunatly or for that matter fortunatly  a good breeder will never need a Board such as this one to advertize litters"VoomDoom

A good breeder might not NEED to advertise they might WANT to advertise.  Sure you can sell a puppy but some breeders actually want to know who gets that puppy.  This can also be a plus  for any breeder who offers breeder support... it is rather easy access.  I think the bigger concern would be the breeder not being internet savy but this site is pretty user friendly! Oh and I like the rating idea...
WELL...  that's my two cent!!  ;D

VonDoom's picture
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in this ecomomy people ought to give more thought to rescue orginizations rather then helping breeders pimp more puppys. or maybe the fact that tens of thousands of dogs are euthanised everyday isnt as big of a concern as selling ad space. "to compete with competitors" many truelly ethical breeders know this and have discontinued there programs for the short term. But truthfully those type of breeders are few and far between.

Big suprize even rescues currently have dobermans from titled parents these days. Dogs are getting left behind left and right and if you are truelly a dog lover you can reconize this as a serious problem. A true dog lover will focus there energy on the dogs that are already here and need homes weather or not he is missing a leg due to frost bite or other ailment. And even the most respected breeders in the world that cant or wont cut down on the litters they produce need a wake up call to.

Grendelspop's picture
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Yes absolutely,Lower their litters, breed correctly, and by all means get those Doberman's out of shelters.The problem is that even if you get all the breeders to breed responsibly you still have those idiots that see a rap video or just on a whim go out and buy a dog.These"or the majority" are the dogs that end up in shelters. Not the ones that were bought from 800- 4500  from a breeder that you have been speaking to for months on a forum. We all agree that something needs done in a major way to get all these dogs out of shelters, I just think that taking away an outlet that breeders and potential buyers can co-exsist is not the answer. Over breeding and spontaneous buying will continue elsewere any way,but at least here the breeders and buyers are compelled to act in a respectable manner.Competing with other groups just an after thought. There are a large number of people on this forum and others I visit that did get their dog from a shelter. I always like to hear about them being rescued but cant help but think about the sorry piece of work that took them there in the first place.Know your breeder,research and know who you are selling to. Education and accountability is the key.

AlphaAdmin's picture
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There are a few problems with your conclusion VonDoom. First, not everyone who is ready for a Doberman is ready for a Doberman rescue. You never know what type of problems you'll be taking on with regard to health and temperament. So, anyone considering a Doberman rescue really needs to be lucky, or understand dog behavior and training really well. Otherwise the poor dog will just get passed off once again - or worse.

Second, by expecting good breeders to cut back on breeding to make more homes for rescue dogs, you're not focusing on the problem. As Grendelspop pointed out, good breeders place their puppies with good homes - homes that rarely create rescue dogs. The source of all these damaged dogs is the bad breeders who sell their dogs to any idiot that thinks the Doberman looks cool and has $300 cash in his pocket.

Third, if the good breeders cut back, this isn't making as much room for rescues as you might think. Some people want to rescue a dog and some want a puppy. The ones that want puppies will shift from buying a good puppy to a bad one more likely than taking on a rescue. This will create more rescue dogs.

Forth, and this is important, the irresponsible breeders in the world are doing a great job of destroying the Doberman breed. Good breeders are vastly outnumbered by the random fool breeding what he thinks are cute little paydays in him basement. Good breeders cutting back means bad breeders ramping up - which means further degradation to this fine breed.

I wish more people COULD take rescue Dobermans. But the fact is, most people can barely train and keep a healthy home for the most mild dog. A Doberman missing a leg is one thing. A Doberman who has been isolated is a whole other, fairly dangerous thing.

avortman's picture
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Good points Horse and Grendel
This is the last place a "shill" breeder would come.  There is a lot of knowledge shared here to make the potential Doberman owner aware of the problems that can be affiliated with the Doberman.  As stated a rescue Dobie can be a real crap shoot- why is it there?  What issues does it have?  If I had young children I would not feel comfortable just going to the shelter and picking up a rescue. There is a big difference when you get a healthy pup and it grows up with your family,you are in control of its development and socialization and can correct any serious issues in the "bud" This forum promotes the potential buyer to do his home work and research to make an educated decision.  I have yet to find a better more forth right open and honest Doberman site.

rgreen4's picture
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I as a user, am grateful for the puppy forum. I purchased a wonderful puppy from an excellent breeder after seeing the post on the site and the pictures of the previous litter from the same parents. This was followed up by pictures of the actual litter after whelping.

I was set back a bit when there was a puppy application involved. I used to breed Dobies, and always wanted to restrict the people to whom they went, and never encountered the application. (I have been out of the breeding business since 1995 because of the expense and hassle). Then I thought a few minutes and realized the beauty of it, so I filled it out and sent it in. I drove a day an a half to pick up Princess, and I named her that after I realized I was calling her that from the start. She is a wonderful pup and off to an excellent start.

She is now 16 weeks old, was boarded over the weekend when I was away, and they weighed her because she got her first rabies shot - 28 pounds. She is a precious joy, and carries herself well. She holds her head up high and had a prancing trot (when she is not bounding like a puppy). Her ears stood from the beginning and she has been out of ear braces for two weeks not (two weeks with braces).

I would never have been connected with this bundle of joy except for the forum and the postings. I for one think it's a great addition. By the way, 3 days round trip is not too big a deal for what looks like the best dog I have ever had. The attendants at the vet's office all love her as well. She is good natured and gets along with my 6 year old male really well (I was more worried about him than her in that regard) and my big red shadow now has a smaller red shadow of his own.

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As a new puppy owner, I would like to chime in and say that the system you are trying to build would have been a huge help to me when I was still in the process of finding a breeder.  As I was researching the breed, I found myself here more than any other site, but it was still difficult to find a breeder.  Or actually, to put it more accurately, it was nearly impossible for me to feel confident judging a breeder, despite the fact that I read every article I could get my hands on, because it was a completely new experience for me.  I found I would call or email a breeder, talk to that person and still have not have a great sense of how trustworthy the person was as a breeder (anyone can sound knowledgeable of the breed--I've never owned one before, but I've read so much at this point, I could comfortably answer a lot of questions with the "right" answer).    I ended up driving to meet a breeder who I didn't feel terribly comfortable with (in all honesty), but he had the parents on site, so ultimately I felt comfortable with the puppy (she's great by the way).  And to the person who suggested rescue dogs--I tried two different adult rescue dogs (not dobes) with very bad results.  With two young children and a cat, a purebred puppy was truly the best option for us.

I think this is a really difficult task. I'm looking through some old postings of people that are trying to sell puppies and I'm appalled by there lack of education in the dogs they are trying to sell. It is obvious to the experienced that these are people that are trying to make money from selling puppies. I believe that all Doberman people need to be educated before buying a dog especially a Doberman. Health testing should be top priority along with temperaments. For example in Dobermans there are certain health issues this breed faces and the reccomended testing to be completed BEFORE breeding is Vwd, Thyroid not just the panel your vet does but a full panel test usually done at places such as Michigan state university, OFA x-rays, Cardio to include both a 24 hour holter monitor and an echocardiogram. My female that has just been bred and has all these tests done which can be verified through OFA certification. I charge the same amount for these puppies as some do from breedings that don't have any health testing. Not only are the dogs I'm breeding conformationaly correct but they are being shown and earning working titles. I'm not saying this to try and promote my dogs, I don't need help in finding homes I have a waiting list started long before the breeding takes place. What I'm trying to do is give an example of good breeding and practices over someone that just makes money from breeding inferior dogs. On top of breeding from health tested parents it is equally as important to raise the litter correctly. It is not something that you just leave to the dam. For example in our situation, we do early neurological stimulation ( I would suggest that everyone read the benefits of doing, if you google it you will find the article) the puppies are well socialized, imprinted, they have mini agiltiy equiptment they are started on basic obedience. Our puppies because of the time and dedication that we give to them are happy, well adjusted puppies. The thought of having other members of this group grade breeders when they haven't a clue what a good breeder does is also a scary thought. It's not about the number of litters you have a year and if you have both parents on site it is about the quality that you produce. If you breed correctly you wont really make any money from the litter there is that much that goes into QUALITY breeding. Lets face it the list of testing that I just gave is expensive now that would be a great place to start, just by doing this will eliminate quite a few dogs just out of not passing the testing, or owners that wont do it. Although you will have to ask for the copies of these tests or see that it is listed on OFA to verify results. It is not very often that good breeders will have both parents on site this is because it limits the quality that you can produce. That is more your people that are just trying to make some money from breeding over and over again. You can visit my website and see what we do with our dogs at http://www.rnddobermans.net

eileennellie's picture
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I bet if you required at least 20+ (or any # you feel is safe) business references, as well as 20+ personal references, it would help to weed out some people you don't need trying to advertise/sell their puppies here. (or anywhere.)  Maybe even do basic background checks on people, the way a prospective employer does before hiring someone? Combine those with the great idea of having a way to share info/ratings about breeders w/others, (good or bad) & it is a solid start in an area w/some "not so solid" people trying to make a fast buck.

The problem with this is even puppy mill kennels such ad kymbertail have that many references. Anyone can come up with references, I say stick to the basics lets bring about the proper health testing. Lets talk about the CHIC registry, I commented on my female being one of ONLY +72 dogs that includes both males and females to have the proper health testing. Not one person cared to comment on this! Come on you guys this is the future of our breed.  Lets face it, it is expensive to do the proper health testing to get ready to breed. Do any of you do this on your dogs? I don't think so or we would have more than 72 in the registry. If you want to weed out people what better way to do it, require the PROPER health testing. YOu would loose so many just from the shear cost of it and loose many more from bad results.

Rex's Mom's picture
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I think the idea of listing good breeders from all states would be a good idea. Also, I like to see rescue organizations represented for easy access by a link maybe. I am looking for a black/tan puppy myself and woud like to adopt from a rescue if I could. BTY if anyone knows of a good breeder in Western Kentucky or Kentucky please let me know. Found some pupps in Miami Fla but that's just too far to drive! Or should you have a young male needing a new home, please contact me.

I have two males and I think adopting a female may be too much for the boys! LOL          

Rex's Mom's picture
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I think the idea of listing good breeders from all states would be a good idea. Also, I like to see rescue organizations represented for easy access by a link maybe. I am looking for a black/tan puppy myself and woud like to adopt from a rescue if I could. BTY if anyone knows of a good breeder in Western Kentucky or Kentucky please let me know. Found some pupps in Miami Fla but that's just too far to drive! Or should you have a young male needing a new home, please contact me.

I have two males and I think adopting a female may be too much for the boys! LOL          

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Interesting topic. I too would have found Doberman Puppies Available or Doberman Puppies Available and Wished For to have been helpful. I joined this forum also hoping to "run into" a competent breeder - why not a rescue - tried that and the rescue org that was the only one that would adopt out in my area, well, - the people were impossible to deal with, making a rescue impossible. Secondly and the primary reason is that I walk on crutches and need to have a puppy in order to train her to work with me while she still doesn't weigh enough to yank me down, I have to have the leash/heel commands working before I attempt to walk in public with her, if I got an older dog that could pull me down I would have to not adopt at all.

As for suggestions, just tossing a few - could there be volunteers from this site that could do the validation of the health reports? references? etc. if people wanting to be a part of this knew that someone would actually be checking what they state they might be less likely to lie in the first place. You could require the name of their vet (verify it online or by calling locally to verify its a legit vet) and get their vet's ok that this is at least a breeder that vet checks their dogs and does proper care. Could you encourage a balance by offering some rescue dogs available? I know I had to look pretty hard to find a local rescue here. I also don't like the "sale" thing maybe the "available" instead of sale and instead of wanted maybe "wished for" or "searching for".  Would there be a place for those who have had their dogs stolen or lost to be able to post with pics etc. so that someone doesn't inadvertently adopt their missing dog? Could you keep PM people out of the picture by asking for a percentage of the sale price as a commission sort of thing - that way people that wanted to buy would know the site was being helped with funds and the seller would also know that they would be checked regularly since funds would be coming from them they would have to meet criteria in order to able to sell and maybe legally with funds being exchanged would allow for more control of who is a part of the site etc. (maybe there are more legal rights to protect the dogs and buyers when funds are being exchanged?) just a few thoughts.

I give you a pat on the back for undertaking such a massive project and can't wait to see what comes of it.  

PhilNCaine's picture
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That must be what all those dobe dollars are for a new pup?

 

I like the idea of a rating system that contains feedback. Before allowing a post for puppies, the poster must supply two or three references?

 

You could call it "The litter Box"???