We want to help people find the right puppy for them, so more pets stay well cared for and in loving homes for life.
We hope we can match you with a puppy we’re caring for. But we don’t always have the right dog for everyone who comes to see us. If you’re thinking of expanding your search beyond Wood Green, we can still help you make the right choice – and support you when you need us throughout your pet’s life.
It’s important not to rush your decision to get a puppy or your search for one. Here are some tips on how to make an informed choice.
Puppies can make a wonderful addition to the family, but they take a lot of hard work, dedication and training to become a well-rounded adult. Make sure you have the time and patience for a puppy. If you think an older dog would suit you better, read our guide to getting an older dog.
Also, read our guide on what to think about before you get a dog to find out more about your duties as a pet owner and the costs of getting a puppy.
Get your puppy from a knowledgeable and reputable breeder or organization to make sure they’re happy and healthy.
Under 'The Animal Welfare (Licensing of Activities Involving Animals) England Regulations 2018', professional dog breeders need a license. So when you approach a breeder or organisation, check:
Scotland, Northern Ireland and Wales have their own regulations so make sure you research them if you’re getting a dog in those areas.
Lots of dogs arrive with us, and other centres, every day – including puppies from eight weeks old. So if you don’t find the right puppy first time, it's always worth visiting again.
Many centres, like Wood Green, will be able to match you with a puppy to suit your specific needs and lifestyle. We can also:
If you’ve already considered our rescue dogs, you can use the Kennel Club's 'Find a Rescue Dog' search to find other centres in the UK. You can also check for reputable centres at the Association of Dogs and Cats Homes members website.
If you can’t find a suitable puppy at a rehoming centre, you could try a breeder.
Use the Kennel Club's 'Find a puppy' search to find registered breeders. Ideally, you want a Kennel Club Assured Breeder who’s committed to a scheme for responsible breeding. They will give you a record of the puppy’s birth and lineage, and will have been thoroughly checked by the Kennel Club.
Genuine sellers and breeders know all about their dog breed. Don’t be afraid to ask questions – they will be happy to tell you what you need to know.
Genuine sellers or breeders will also:
There are lots of pets for sale online. If you choose this route, be very careful who you buy from. Many people are genuinely trying to find their puppies loving new homes. Others are not. Some advertisers are less honest and are just looking to make money.
By buying online, you risk buying from a puppy farm. Puppies from puppy farms often have severe mental and physical problems because they’re bred for profit not health or temperament. The puppies are often taken away from their mother too early and haven’t really been socialised. This can lead to behavioural problems later in life.
There are also many internet scams. For example, people asking for money for couriers or deposits upfront when you haven’t yet seen the dog – which might not even exist. So check all the details thoroughly, and do not part with any money until you have your puppy and its paperwork.
There are various signs that can help you decide if the seller or breeder is not responsible and trustworthy. For example, if:
If you’re going to use the internet to help you find a puppy, look for websites that follow the Defra-endorsed minimum standards set by the Pet Advertising Advisory Group. These include:
If you see an advert from an “Assured Breeder” in a newspaper or on a website, search for their name on the Kennel Club database. You need to check they’re a registered breeder before you do anything else.
To make sure you get a healthy, happy puppy, here are a few things to look out for.
When you visit the puppy, check:
You don’t have to decide to take the puppy there and then. If you have concerns, say you have other dogs to meet before you decide. Please call us on 0300 303 9333 if you’re worried about the puppy’s behaviour or anything else – we can help you work out if the dog is right for you.
If you’re worried about the puppy’s health you can also speak to a vet, but it may be best to look for another puppy.
Take this list of questions with you when you go to see a puppy, so you can get all the information you need. If you need help interpreting the answers, just call us on 0300 303 9333.
Wherever you get your puppy from, we’re here to support you.
If you have any questions about getting a puppy, who to buy from or the information you’ve been given about a puppy, just call us on 0300 303 9333.
For extra information about getting a puppy, go to: