Congratulations on your purchase of a Livalittle Labrador Retriever. Your puppy has been selectively-bred for excellent quality, health, soundness, intelligence, and good temperament. We have recently improved upon our already comprehensive guarantee to insure your complete confidence in purchasing a Lab puppy, as well as to insure your complete satisfaction after the purchase.
Livalittle Labradors continues to research and remove out of our breeding program as many other health issues as possible, beyond the conditions over which responsible breeders have some control, i.e. adequate hips and eyes. For some of these issues (such as allergies, cardiac problems, epilepsy, incorrect bites), there is not a "test", genetic marker, or data base of affected or producing Labradors.
Some health issues are significantly impacted by conditions in the dog's environment or there is only a "suspected" genetic basis but no clear-cut genetic pattern. For example, elbow problems do not have a clear genetic basis, and elbow x-rays are not always easy to read, even for the OFA. Often, elbow problems are due to minor puppy injuries, hard play or running, jumping off steps or a couch, walking down the stairs in the home repetitively, playing Frisbee, leaping on sand at the beach, etc., all of which may appear harmless, but are not at this early stage of development. In addition, such conditions may be simply a fluke of Mother Nature, as we see with humans.
These issues mentioned above, without clear-cut genetic basis and a test and/or database for the condition, or those significantly affected by environmental factors, cannot be covered by Livalittle Labradors' health guarantee. Undescended testicles, inverted vulvas or fertility problems are not guaranteed. For those items that we do not cover, we would under nearly all circumstances still accept return of the dog, without compensation.
Our general health guarantee is for 72 hours (three business days) from the date of delivery, meaning that you are guaranteed to receive a healthy puppy. Hips are guaranteed to be sound at 24 months of age (dogs with sound hips at 24 months of age have less then a 3% chance of change over their lifetime!), with OFA certification to occur as evidence within 26 months.
General Health Guarantee
Your puppy is guaranteed to be in good general health and free of congenital deformities as of the time you take possession of the puppy (unless otherwise agreed upon). For this guarantee to be in effect, you will need to take the puppy to your veterinarian within 72 hours (three business days) of receiving him. If your veterinarian feels the puppy is not as represented, please have him or her write a letter describing the problem. Then call us to make arrangements for returning the puppy. Should this puppy die from a genetic defect or should this puppy develop a life threatening genetic defect* within the health guarantee period, Livalittle Labradors will replace the dog with another puppy of the same sex and value as soon as one becomes available. No cash refund will be offered (unless otherwise agreed upon in writing). Livalittle Labradors will not be held responsible for any veterinary bills incurred.
Since Livalittle Labradors has no control over the puppy's new environment, this general health guarantee will not be in effect after the 72 hours has expired, and will not cover problems caused by neglect (poisoning, accidents, etc.), or exposure to other sick dogs, even during the first 72 hours. If your puppy develops diarrhea, it is likely due to stress, water change, food changes or over-feeding. If it continues more than a couple days, the puppy should be checked by a vet, particularly for the protozoan parasites, coccidia and giardia, which are common in the environment and easily treated.
Hip and Elbow Guarantee
As with all Livalittle Labradors' breeding stock, both of your puppy's parents have had their hips and elbows x-rayed and certified to be free of dysplasia by the Orthopedic Foundation of Animals (OFA), the national registry for dysplasia control. Research has shown that dysplasia and other joint issues have three main causes: genetics, over feeding (and poor quality food), and too much exercise at a young age. This means that new owners can assume a great deal of responsibility in seeing that their dog develops good joints as they are growing. Puppies should not be allowed to become overweight. Carrying too much weight at a young age is going to add stress on soft puppy bones and is believed to have an effect on the skeletal development. As young bones do not entirely calcify until 12 months of age, new owners need to be careful not to over-exercise their puppy, which can cause joint problems.
Your puppy is guaranteed to be free of hip dysplasia, relative to the purpose for which you purchased the puppy, at two years of age (24 months), which is the age the OFA feels the condition will be seen on x-ray if it is to occur.
If you purchased the puppy as a pet puppy (AKC Limited Registration), the puppy is guaranteed to be free of moderate to severe hip dysplasia and Grade II or III elbows, to the degree that it would significantly limit the activities for which the puppy was purchased, as a companion dog.
Evaluation must be done prior to 26 months of age and must be done by a qualified veterinarian approved by Livalittle Labradors. The x-rays must be submitted and rated by the OFA (buyer pays costs). A diagnosis of hip dysplasia based on a veterinarian's manual examination, poorly positioned x-rays, or Penn-Hip scores alone will not qualify for this guarantee. Do NOT let your vet try to pop the hip out of the socket! If the puppy has been significantly overweight, or has had an accident that could affect the hips, this guarantee will not apply.
Livalittle Labradors' breeding stock is examined by a certified ophthalmologist on a regular basis. Livalittle Labradors Eye Guarantee covers your puppy for a one year period. Your puppy is guaranteed to be free of progressive retinal atrophy and other hereditary eye defects that would cause vision problems significant enough to limit its activities as a companion dog.
Conditions of Health Guarantee
In order to be covered by all/any of the above guarantees:
The puppy must be examined by your veterinarian within 72 hours (three business days) of receipt.
The dog must carry the "Livalittle" prefix in his AKC registered name.
The OFA evaluation must be made no later than 26 months of age.
The eye exam must be by a certified ACVO ophthalmologist.
The dog must not have whelped or sired a litter.
The dog must not be overweight, or have suffered trauma from either accident, neglect or exercise.
The dog must have been given the Nuvet supplement for the entire 24 month period (Nuvet keeps us informed as to who is giving and who has stopped giving it ). Dogs with AKC Limited Registration, over the age of 15 months but not before 12 months, must have been spayed or neutered. The dog must be owned by the original owner. We highly recommend that you feed only quality brands of dog food such as Nutro, Iams, Nature's Recipe, Wellness, Kirkland , etc. There are many online stores, such as Petsmart, Petco and many others, that offer online accessibility to the best brands, so there is no excuse not to feed your dog correctly. Lower quality dog food is not a bargain in terms of its affect on your pet, easily causing significant health problems, which may cost many times the difference between dog foods. Your best investment is to feed the highest quality dog food that you can afford.
To Process a Claim
If your puppy qualifies for return on this guarantee, according to terms above, the full purchase price of the puppy will be applied toward a puppy of similar quality from another Livalittle Labradors litter (buyer pays shipping). Depending upon the circumstances, it may be required that you return the puppy/dog to us. This credit will apply upon receipt of the following: The OFA evaluation that the puppy with AKC Limited Registration has hip dysplasia to the extent that will significantly inhibit a normal life as a pet. Or in a similar fashion, as described in the Eye Guarantee section above, a copy of eye exam.
*In the event that a diagnosis of a genetic defect appears questionable, a second opinion from a veterinarian approved by Livaliitle Labradors will be the determining factor (buyer to pay costs). We will not under any circumstances replace a dog that has passed away or been "put to sleep" unless we have been informed in writing that the dog was sick and we have likewise given permission to have the dog put to sleep.
Seller-Judy Doyel-Smith , Livalittle Labradors