Deciding which animal you want to breed can be a daunting decision not only because you'll need some prior knowledge and experience with that particular species but also because of what breeding entails.
To help you get a general overview of what you'll need to consider before embarking in such a rewarding and demanding adventure we have compiled the following list:
Have the necessary budget - In order to be fully capable of caring for adult and young animals you must have access to a certain amount of money as you'll be spending throughout the entire process. Obviously, horse breeders may be required to spend a little more than those breeding cats but nevertheless, you'll need to be prepared for this type of investment.
Consider your living situation - Although dogs, cats and birds are the most common household pets your decision should be dictated by passion for a specific animal. If you live on a farm and have experience with livestock you may even consider breeding horses or bunnies. If you live in an urban area, puppies and kittens can easily be bred in your home while exotic animals can only be raised in a zoo or professional organisation, and only people with undergraduate and/or graduate degrees in veterinary science can work with these animal species.
In the majority of cases, you will need a special license or permit to breed animals or keep more than a couple on your private property. So it's important that you research any policies and laws that may affect your decision prior to choosing the animal you'd like to breed.
Follow these essential points to become a licensed breeder.
Zoning Approval - Some authorities may also need you to register as a shelter/kennel before allowing you to have more than one animal on your property. Try to determine if you are required to obtain zoning approval in case your home or property isn't registered for business use.
Apply for a Breeder License - Once you have found which criteria you need to meet in order to obtain a breeder license, prepare to take the necessary steps for obtaining one. Apply for a general business license which is required in many jurisdictions even if you have the necessary permits to run a breeding business. You can usually do this by filling out an application which can be found online however, make sure that you are not required to visit the local branch of the department of Animal Services.
Once you've dealt with the legal and educational sides of becoming a professional breeder it is time to think about the kind of activity you really want to specialise in.
Before making any decision to purchase your first animal consider your level of experience. Some people may want to begin with a male which involves slightly less financial responsibility of caring for a pregnant female. Or you might prefer to start with both a male and female to avoid having to negotiate contracts with other breeders. Many prefer having females as they enjoy the entire pregnancy and birth phases of caring for their pet as well as taking care of the offspring.
This may be a good time to connect with experienced breeders and professionals who may be able to give you important advice on the most suitable option for you.
Now that you have healthy newborn animals that are weaned from their mother, you can begin to advertise them for sale or adoption. You can decide to post ads on local newspapers or maybe even ask vets and trainers to help you spread the word, and consider creating classified ads on specialised websites like PetsForAll.
Once you begin to receive enquiries from potential owners it is essential that you don't rush in the decision. Screen owners and make sure they have experience or knowledge of caring for the specific animal they're wanting, ask questions about their living situation and lifestyle (do they work full time, do they have other pets or children, etc.). Don't hesitate to end the negotiation if you feel uncomfortable for any reason as you are entitled to refuse to sell them the animal you have lovingly taken care of until now.
Professional and reputable breeders are not in it for the money but because they genuinely care for the animals they have dedicated their life to. So, offer reasonable prices and be transparent when faced with questions from potential new owners.