Book Reviews, A Breeder's Companion: Record Keeping for your Dogs' Litters

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Book Review, by Dennis Homes

I’m quite an avid collector of dog books and at the last count I had over 130 books about dogs plus countless yearbooks and magazines. Whenever a new dog book is published I always read the reviews and if possible have a quick browse through it at a book store. I’ve often thought that virtually all aspects of dog keeping has been adequately covered, however, Leila Grandemange has certainly filled a much needed gap in the market with her latest book A Breeder’s Companion.

What is so unique about this book is that the first part is an essential guide for preparing for a litter, which includes a checklist for all the items needed plus in-depth details of all the things to check and look out for during pregnancy and up to the time of whelping. It then sets out the important procedures to adhere to in those important early days of a young puppy’s life when they are extremely vulnerable. It then goes on to outline the care of the pups through weaning plus information on deworming and vaccination.

Where this book differs from other books about breeding is that the second half of the book is devoted to record keeping. There are lots of sections for individual records where the owner can fill in precise details of their litters. It starts with a page where information of the dam and sire can be recorded followed by a chart where you can fill in the temperature of the dam at various times of the day in the week leading up to the birth. Once the puppies are born there is a chart to record the time of day of the birth, the sex of each puppy, the weight, color/markings and whether the afterbirth appeared. This is followed by a chart to record their weights am and pm over the first three weeks plus a chart to record details of worming and vaccinations. Finally, there is a section where full details of the new owners can be recorded. At the start of these litter sections there is even a space where you can stick a photograph of the particular litter.

Many responsible breeders do note all these details and for many years I’ve kept notebooks and folders with this information. But to have all this in one book is a fantastic idea which I’m sure will be a boon to both novice breeders and experienced breeders alike.

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It gives me great pleasure to recommend Leila’s useful and comprehensive new book, A Breeder’s Companion. Everyone contemplating breeding and whelping litters should keep this trusty guide on hand.

— W. Jean Dodds, DVM, Santa Monica, CA

Leila Grandemange is absolutely right when she states that responsible breeders need to keep good records. This book should provide just the right vehicle for doing that!

 — Patricia V. Trotter, author of “Born To Win”

We recently were expecting our first litter. We saw this book online and thought it would be a great guide. We were very pleased. We found this book helpful in keeping us on top of things and organized. There is plenty of good stuff in there. I can see us referring to it in the future. It is very well organized and written in plain English, very easy to follow. We highly recommend it!

— Amazon review, Joe