I purchased a shih tzu for $700 from Debbie Rondeau of Four Paws and got ripped off, because my puppy, Nikko does not look like a shih tzu.
First of all, Debbie was not very accommodating regarding the ship date. She asks you when you would like the puppy shipped, but she doesn't pay any attention to what you want. She ships at her convenience only. She didn't even email me to find out if I received him safely. As a courtesy, I did emial her that I received him on 12/5/03. I found my dealings with her very unsatisfactory. I think she is a very unprofessional person and probably is running a puppy mill of sorts. Just look at her website and see all the puppies she always has.
She professes on her web site that she raises quality puppies with great coats. Only that is not true. When I received my puppy, Nikko, he was very mangy looking. His hair was very thin and coarse, his skin was all flaky and he scratched himself incessantly. In fact, the vet did a scraping to test him for the mange. He put Nikko on vitamins and a healthy food diet.
Also, the vet was concerned that he had an open fontenal (soft spot) that had not healed completely which could lead to neurological problems later on if not closed. When I emailed Debbie this info, her response was, "if he had any health issues my vet would never have given him a health certificate to fly." She was not the least bit concerned whether there was a problem with him or not, nor did she ever further inquire about his health. After only on month with me, he gained about three pounds. He only weighed 4.13 on 12/5/03 when I received him, and by Jan. 2nd after proper care and nourishment, he weighed in at 7.5 pounds.
Nikko does not even look like a shih tzu. First of all, his snout is longer and more pointy than the normal pushed in look of a shih tzu. Secondly, his eyes are almond shaped with short eyelashes rather than the shih tzu's normal big round eyes with long curly eyelashes. Third, his hair is short and smooth rather than the long busy look of a shih tzu. I will try to attach a picture of two puppies. The lone on the left is a shih tzu and looks very much like one. The one on the right is my Nikko that Debbie sold me as a shih tzu. It's very obvious how different looking he is.
When I mailed Debbie a picture, her response was, and I quote, "the coat is much like we get sometimes when it is a recessive which is what coc is. It may change once he gets his first short hair cut." Well his hair has never grown long enough to get it cut. Anyways, what little there is, I would be afraid to cut. Furthermore, she states that I bouth a pet, not a shih tzu and that's why he came with a limited registration. My papers state I bought a shih tzue not a pet. First of all, I never discussed breeding rights with her. I never knew about limited registrations. Secondly, she didn't send me his papers until a few days before she shipped him and not until after I had paid her in full.
I had to ask numerous times for pictures of the parents. She actually sent me a picture of his sister. It took me many months and many requests to receive the right pictures. Quite honetly, I don't even know if the pictures I have are correct. Also, I would email her several questions and she would only answer one and ignore the rest. Sometimes her answer wasn't even relevant. Debbie Rondeau obviously has a communication problem.
Under the circumstances, I have asked her for a partial refund. I feel a fifty percent refund is warranted as Nikko is not the quality shih tzu she claims to raise. She refuses to give any refund whatsoever. She has offered to exchange him or to help me sell him. Who would pay $700 for a shih tzu that doesn't look like one, let alone the $1000 plus that I have invested in him due to neuturing and shots. Once a puppy comes into my home, he is here for his duration. Just because I'm disappointed that he does not look like a shih tzu, doesn't mean I would send him back as you would bring a dress back to a store because it wasn't exactly what you wanted. Furthermore, I wouln't think of sending any dog back to her.
DO NOT buy any puppies from Debbie Rondeau of Four Paws. DO NOT trust Debbie Rondeau. I know several other people that have had problems with her. Also, there are several breeders that know of her and don't think very highly of her. Unfortunately, I am not at liberty to use ther names. Unfortunately, it is people like Debbie Rondeau that give reputable breeders a bad name.
Lancaster, New York