Written Health Guarantee
At My Broken Heart Ranch, we prioritize the health and well-being of every puppy that leaves our care. To ensure that our clients are well informed about their new furry friend, we provide a written health guarantee that contains critical information. This guarantee includes our contact information, your puppy's date of birth, and the names and DNA test results of both parents. Additionally, it lists all vaccinations and medications given to your puppy while in our care, as well as the terms and conditions of the current and future health guarantee. We take pride in our efforts to raise healthy puppies, and this guarantee is our way of reassuring every puppy parent that we have taken all necessary steps to provide you with the healthiest Australian Shepherd puppy possible.
Why we DNA test
DNA tests can confirm whether or not a puppy will be affected by common genetic variations. To guarantee that all puppies at My Broken Heart Ranch are free of these variations, we test all of our breeding animals, for MDR1, HC, & DM. MDR1- Did you know that a genetic variation called MDR1, or Multi-Drug Resistance 1, can cause sensitivity to Ivermectin and other drugs in dogs? If a dog has one or two copies of MDR1, they may react to these drugs, depending on the dosage. Dogs with MDR1 have a transport defect, which means that the drugs can enter their brains but fail to be transported out, leading to toxic levels that can cause serious neurological problems like seizures and even death. As per The Canine Health Information Center, “OFA”, about 23.6% of Australian Shepherds carry at least one copy of MDR1. Hereditary cataracts (HC), also known as early onset or juvenile cataracts, are caused by a breakdown of tissue in the lens of the eye. This condition can lead to an inability to see clearly and potentially cause total blindness. In Australian Shepherds, a HSF4 gene mutation causes a dominant form of HC that is not always fully penetrant. This means that having one copy of the mutation can predispose an Australian Shepherd to the disease, but not all dogs with this mutation will develop HC. It is important to note that not all cataracts are hereditary and can also be caused by old age or injury. Familial cataracts in different lens regions may also not be attributed to the HSF4 mutations. When testing for HSF4-Hereditary Cataracts, results can fall into three categories: CLEAR/NORMAL, CARRIER/AFFECTED, and AT RISK/AFFECTED. Dogs with two copies of the normal gene fall under CLEAR/NORMAL and will not develop HSF4-Hereditary Cataracts or pass this mutation to their offspring. Those with one copy of the normal gene and one copy of the mutation associated with this disease fall under CARRIER/AFFECTED. They will not develop HSF4-Hereditary Cataracts but may pass the mutation to 50% of their offspring on average. Dogs with two copies of the mutation associated with HSF4-Hereditary Cataracts fall under AT RISK/AFFECTED and will likely develop cataracts, experience an inability to see clearly, and potentially go blind. Degenerative Myelopathy, SOD1A, is a disease that affects the spinal cord and usually shows symptoms between 8 to 14 years of age in dogs. Symptoms include loss of coordination in the limbs and eventually difficulty standing and walking. After about a year, dogs may become paraplegic. When interpreting test results, there are three possible outcomes: (CLEAR/NORMAL): Dogs with two copies of the normal gene will neither develop Degenerative Myelopathy nor pass this mutation to their offspring. (CARRIER/NOT AFFECTED): Dogs with one copy of the normal gene and one copy of the mutation associated with this disease will likely not develop Degenerative Myelopathy but may pass the mutation to 50% of their offspring, on average, if bred. (AT RISK/AFFECTED): Dogs with two copies of the mutation will likely develop Degenerative Myelopathy during their lifetime. 32.1 % of Australian Shepherds carry DM according to OFA.org
Why are vaccines important for your puppy's health? Young Puppies are more susceptible to infectious diseases because their immune system is not yet fully mature. They receive some protection from their mother's milk, but this protection is not long-lasting and can create gaps in coverage. A series of vaccines is recommended to ensure that the animal receives a vaccine as early as possible after maternal antibodies subside. To provide optimal protection against disease, a series of vaccinations are scheduled, usually 3-4 weeks apart. The final vaccination in the series is typically administered at about 4 months of age. Which vaccinations should your Australian Shepherd puppy receive? "Core" vaccines are recommended for most pets in a particular area or geographical location because they protect from diseases most common in that area. "Non-core" vaccinations are for individual pets with unique needs. Your veterinarian will consider your puppy's risk of exposure to a variety of preventable diseases in order to customize a vaccination program for optimal protection throughout your puppy's life. My Broken Heart Puppies will receive 5way vaccinations starting at 6 weeks of age. This 5 in one vaccination includes protection for Canine Distemper, hepatitis, kennel cough, parainfluenza, and parvovirus Distemper is a serious and easily spread disease caused by a virus that attacks the respiratory, gastrointestinal, and nervous systems of many animals, including dogs, raccoons, and skunks. The virus can be transmitted through the air when an infected animal sneezes or coughs, or through shared food and water bowls. Symptoms of distemper include discharges from the eyes and nose, fever, coughing, vomiting, diarrhea, seizures, twitching, paralysis, and often, death. In the past, this disease was known as "hard pad" because it caused the footpad to thicken and harden. Unfortunately, there is no cure for distemper, but supportive care can be given to help prevent secondary infections and control symptoms. Surviving the symptoms depends on the individual dog's immune system and infected dogs can shed the virus for months. Canine Hepatitis is a viral infection that is extremely contagious and can affect the liver, kidneys, spleen, lungs, and eyes of dogs. This liver disease is caused by a virus that is not related to human hepatitis. Symptoms can range from mild fever and mucous membrane congestion to vomiting, jaundice, enlarged stomach, and liver pain. While some dogs can recover from the mild form of the disease, the severe form can be fatal. Unfortunately, there is no cure for canine hepatitis, but doctors can treat the symptoms. Kennel Cough, also known as infectious tracheobronchitis, is a condition where the upper airways become inflamed. The infection can be caused by bacteria, viruses or other factors, including Bordetella and canine parainfluenza. Often, multiple infections occur simultaneously. Kennel cough typically results in mild symptoms such as harsh, dry coughing, and in severe cases, it may lead to retching, gagging and loss of appetite. In rare instances, it can be fatal. It spreads easily among dogs that are kept in close proximity, such as in kennels. Antibiotics are not usually necessary, except for severe or chronic cases. Your veterinarian may recommend a dog-safe cough suppressant to help your dog (and you) get some rest, and some throat soothers that are safe for dogs to help make them more comfortable. Canine parainfluenza virus (CPIV) is a respiratory virus that is extremely infectious and is a frequent cause of infectious tracheobronchitis, also known as canine cough. Even though the respiratory symptoms may seem similar to those of canine influenza, they are different viruses and necessitate distinct vaccines to ensure protection. Parvovirus is a highly contagious virus that affects all dogs. The highest risk of contracting it is for unvaccinated dogs and puppies under four months old. This virus ruthlessly attacks the gastrointestinal system, causing severe symptoms such as loss of appetite, vomiting, fever and often bloody diarrhea. Dehydration can occur rapidly and may lead to death within 48 to 72 hours. It is imperative to seek prompt veterinary attention to save your dog's life. Although there is no cure for parvovirus, it is possible to manage the symptoms and keep the dog hydrated until their immune system can fight off the illness. How often should your pet be vaccinated? Some vaccinations provide adequate immunity when administered every few years, while others require more frequent schedules to maintain protection. Your veterinarian will determine a vaccination schedule that's appropriate for your Australian Shepherd puppy.
Do I need pet insurance
Our furry companions bring joy and activity into our lives, and they show us unconditional affection. As pet owners, we strive to keep them happy, healthy, and safe. Part of this responsibility is ensuring that they receive the best veterinary care possible, which can be costly. Pet insurance can be a helpful option to ensure that your Australian Shepherd puppy receives the best care without causing financial strain. The process is straightforward and involves three simple steps: paying your vet, filing a claim, and receiving reimbursement. Exclusive Initial 30 Days of Coverage for AKC Registrants 24/7 on-call vet support Reimburse up to 80% of eligible expenses Start coverage immediately – no waiting periods Low 20% co-insurance & $250 deductible Zero enrollment fees to start Stay with your current vet Exclusive pet insurance partner of the American Kennel Club No incident limits