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Puppy People

Lasting Legacy Puppies Aims for a Special Pet Experience

Writer / Lois Tomaszewski
Photography Provided

Puppies are, to many people, irresistible. Cuteness overload, however, can lead people to make the wrong choice in a puppy. At Lasting Legacy Puppies, owners David and Vonda Slabaugh work hard to make sure the puppy their customers choose is the right fit.

The couple has been raising puppies at their farm in Bremen since 2014. It is a home-based, family-run business that gives the couple something to do, and an opportunity to teach their four children the important lessons of hard work and responsibility. The Slabaughs have two sons and two daughters, ranging in age from 3 to 14.

“I grew up with dogs on my family’s farm,” David Slabaugh says. “I would bring the cows up to the barn with a dog at my side.”

Slabaugh just completed a new climate-controlled facility to house his breeding operation. The building has in-floor heating, ventilation systems, and a grooming and bathing area. There is also a retail office and feed room.

The new facility provides more space for the puppies to become socialized and used to being handled – tasks that are assigned to his children. All Slabaugh puppies are handled from shortly after birth, he says. The puppies are accustomed to being held and examined.

Currently, Lasting Legacy offers goldendoodles, mini poodles, dachshunds and French bulldogs. Each breed has specific characteristics that make it suitable for families or individual owners. For example the goldendoodle, a hybrid golden retriever and mini poodle breed, is typically an outgoing, friendly and high-energy dog according to Slabaugh. Mini poodles can also be high-energy and are very popular.

Buying a puppy from the Slabaughs is not a one-and-done process. It all starts with choosing a puppy from a photo on their website. Once the puppy is selected, the customer puts a deposit down to secure that puppy.

The customer is then given regular updates on how the puppy is growing. They are also welcome to visit the puppy as it grows up, until it is ready to leave at 8 weeks of age.

“Once a puppy leaves here, we send a gift bag along,” Slabaugh says. “It has a blanket in it that has the smell of mom and its siblings.”

This scented blanket helps the puppy adapt to a new home because it is familiar. Other items in the gift bag include a probiotic to help with stomach upset and nervousness.

The new owner is also given an education in puppy training. Slabaugh suggests that every puppy be crate trained. This provides a routine, gives the puppy a safe place to sleep at night and can aid in potty training.

Slabaugh also suggests that puppies be given toys to keep them occupied, especially chew toys. Just like teething children, puppies need something to gnaw on as their teeth develop. Having a chew stick or some other dog-appropriate toy can keep the puppy from finding alternatives, like a pair of shoes, the corner of a furniture piece or even a piece of clothing.

Exercise can also use up that puppy energy and keep the puppy from getting into mischief. If that happens, it is important that puppies, like children, are disciplined.

The key to successful puppy ownership is consistency, Slabaugh says.

The goal is to make sure the puppies find a home that will provide all the things they need, and fulfill the needs of their owner.

“We are here for 100% satisfaction,” Slabaugh says. “It’s an animal so we can’t guarantee it will be perfect, but if there’s a problem I want our customers to give us a call.”

The health guarantee on the company website says all puppies come with a one-year health guarantee that covers any genetic or hereditary health issue. Puppies who leave for their new home are up to date on vaccinations and deworming medicine.

Slabaugh’s hope for each of the puppies, and the people who buy them, is that the experience leads to a lasting legacy, meaning pleasant memories that can be reflected upon in the future.

To find out more about Lasting Legacy Puppies, visit lastinglegacypuppies.com or call 574-646-2157.

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