Spotlight on Pawrade Puppy Breeder Amber

15 minute read By Lucy Hughes
Reviewed by: Pawrade Team
May 02, 2024

a woman wearing a pink shirt holds 5 mini dachshund puppies arranged in a row

You’ve just entered a room, and bright little beady eyes stare up at you in anticipation. Suddenly, the room is filled with the pitter-patter of tiny paws romping toward you, showering you with puppy kisses. It’s a puppy attack!

If you’ve ever wondered what it was like to be bombarded with puppy love, our Pawrade breeder partner, Amber, is living the dream. Pawrade makes adopting a puppy as easy and secure as possible. We achieve this through our partnerships with trustworthy breeders nationwide like Amber, removing barriers with a smooth puppy adoption process. We sat down with Amber to learn what it’s like to be a reputable Pawrade breeder. 

As a breeder for 17 years and consistently for nearly five years, Amber knows how much love, care, and hard work goes into raising well-adjusted puppies for their future homes. Amber began breeding Jack Russell Terriers and Pembroke Welsh Corgis for the first portion of her time as a breeder. When those dams retired, she switched to a variety of other dog breeds intermittently, including Mini Dachshunds, Chihuahuas, Standard and Mini Australian Shepherds, Yorkshire Terriers, Shih Tzus, Boston Terriers, and even Dalmatians at one point. Amber is raising two litters currently: A Mini Dachshund litter, and a litter of red tris and merle Mini Australian Shepherds. She loves them all!

We were so excited to have a chance to ask Amber all about her life as a breeder, including a day-in-the-life look at what being a breeder entails and what she loves about her partnership with Pawrade. 

A Day in the Life of Amber the Breeder: What it Takes to Raise Puppies

You may have questions to ask your breeder when you select a puppy, but we’ve asked the deeper questions for you. Let’s hear what it’s like to be a dog breeder! 

A typical day

Raising happy puppies is an around-the-clock job. Amber’s day begins around 6:30-7:00 AM. She is fortunate to work from home, allowing her to check on the mama and puppies several times throughout the day. After all, raising puppies is a full-time job in and of itself, and she must stay close by to meet their needs. She checks in with the puppies a final time around 11:30-midnight.

Amber also checks to see if everything is fully stocked and prepared for all aspects of her business. She purchases heating lamps, food, crates, and water and food bowls, arranges vet visits and vaccines, and makes sure health certificates are all set. 

Genetic testing 

Before two parents are bred, they must first pass genetic tests. Amber uses Embark, which screens the results of a simple cheek swab to determine the puppies’ results for health conditions, genetic coefficient of inbreeding (COI), and 35 trait tests including coat color, shedding, and more.

How do you pick the parents for a litter?

Picking suitable dams and sires is crucial to the health and temperaments of puppies. In addition to genetic testing, Amber noted, “We look for two main factors: Conformation and temperament. Are the parents excellent examples of the breed standard? For example, we prefer apple-headed Chihuahuas with short legs and stocky bodies. Overall, we look for healthy, strong parents.” 

The next criteria are the parents’ temperaments. Amber’s intimate knowledge of the breeds’ personalities allows her to identify parents with the very best traits of the breeds. For example, “Chihuahuas may have a reputation for being yappy or aggressive, but we choose the sweetest parents we can find and breed for excellent temperaments,” Amber stated. “When pairing Shih Tzu parents, we seek out bold, confident, calm Shih Tzus. Mini Dachshunds are sometimes known as being extremely hyper. We look for parents that are laid-back, funny, and playful.” 

Amber’s confidence in her puppies’ conformation and temperaments have resulted in repeat customers with several returning to adopt a second puppy from her. “Our past puppy parents are always thrilled to see their puppy grow up with wonderful personalities. We want the same people to return and want another puppy from us!”   

Another important aspect is determining when to retire a dam. When dams are around five to six years old, they are spayed and no longer produce litters. “We’ll find a new home for the dam on a rare occasion, but almost all of our dams stay a part of our family,” noted Amber. 

What’s the Birthing Day like? 

The day has arrived! A litter’s birth is always an exciting, yet tiring day. “Most dogs go 55 days until birth,” Amber noted. “We’ll take Mom’s temperature every hour. Once the temperature reaches 99°F, then it’s typically time!”

Not every mama has the same labor journey, just like humans. “I’ve had some females be in labor for up to 18 hours, but it’s not common for most. A typical mama will birth her puppies start to finish within three hours,” Amber explained. 

“I have a special place in my heart for mother dogs who take care of their babies. We can predict the puppies’ future health within about five days after they are born, and good mothers make good puppies.” 

Feeding growing puppies

As soon as puppies are born, they look for their first meal. A dam’s milk is rich in nutrients containing protein, fat, sugar, and vitamins, and serves as a great energy source for everything a growing puppy needs.  

“When a puppy is born, we watch how much the pup is eating and drinking because their stomachs can be very sensitive. We transition them to NutriSource puppy food, and they are free-fed until nine weeks old.” Amber spends time researching the very best food for her puppies and building a robust feeding program to meet her puppies’ nutritional needs throughout each week of puppy growth and development for optimal health. 

Let’s get social

Socializing puppies is another key skill puppies need before going to their new homes. “Our puppies are raised in the home around all different kinds of noises to get them used to a household environment. We also have horses, cattle, and cats on our farm. We play with them a lot, get them used to car rides and other things they may encounter.” Amber has a two-year-old who loves animals. “We make sure our puppies are not timid around children.” 

Another aspect some people might not consider is preparing puppies for grooming sessions. “I’m a firm believer in bathing my puppies, and they’ll have had several baths before going to their new homes. I get them used to the blow dryer, even the little Chihuahuas.” Whether you groom your puppy at home or take them to a professional groomer, Amber’s puppies will be prepared thanks to her efforts when they are young. 

Potty & crate training

One common question people have for breeders is about potty training young puppies. Amber introduces potty training around eight weeks for bigger breeds on puppy pads until they are fully vaccinated. Smaller breeds start a little later around 10 weeks because of their tiny bladders after weaning. 

Amber is big on crate training puppies as well. Crate training benefits your puppy in several ways. Crates serve as dens, reassuring puppies and giving them a safe space. Crates can be used effectively as part of a puppy routine to ensure your puppy eats and naps at set times. Crate training can also serve as a haven of comfort when their beloved humans aren’t home, reducing separation anxiety. 

When do Amber’s puppies go to their new homes?

Small dog breed puppies need extra time with their dams and littermates and will not go home at the traditional age of 8 weeks old. Because of their delicate development and tiny size, Chihuahua, Yorkshire Terrier, and sometimes Shih Tzu or Mini Dachshund puppies will go home when they reach 2 lbs. or 12 weeks, whichever comes first. Australian Shepherds and other larger breeds will leave for their new homes right after the 8-week mark. 


Amber and Bubbles enjoy Las Vegas

The ebb and flow of the breeder business

Pawrade offers puppies year-round, but Amber notices patterns when people adopt puppies from her. She says, “Summer is slow because people are traveling, etc.” Part of being a responsible puppy owner is having plenty of time to bond with your new puppy, teaching it all about its new surroundings, and becoming a beloved family member during a seamless transition. Time spent away on vacations for some families is often not conducive to being home enough to give a puppy the attention it needs.

“Things pick up around fall and winter, with spring being the season where everyone is looking for puppies. “February, March, and April are our busiest season,” noted Amber.

Being a breeder is a year-round commitment. When there aren’t any litters to take care of, Amber is still working on continuous improvement for her business. “We work on our nutrition program a lot. We’ll do things like build and improve upon safe puppy yards for playtime.”

However, there is room for fun and games, too! “Our lives revolve around our dogs. We take our dogs out on the boat to fish and other fun adventures. We even took our Chihuahua, Bubbles, to Las Vegas on a plane, visiting stores and casinos and having a great time!” Amber exclaimed. 

How puppies travel to their new homes

New pawrents can choose a variety of ways to welcome their new puppy with lots of travel options for Pawrade puppies. “We take a Puppy First Approach,” Amber said. “We want to make sure our puppies are well-off in other people’s hands when they travel to you. They travel very well by car or by plane.” 

Amber noted, “We deliver to every state except Hawaii, and we arrange for local pickup in a public meeting spot if you’re able to travel. We have people that will drive or even fly, and we’ll make sure all those arrangements are really easy and clearly communicated so that you know where to pick up your puppy and when it is on its way.”

Amber has established a great relationship with her preferred ground delivery service. “We offer a ground delivery service with a company we’ve worked with for years - they’re fantastic. They’ll give you updates on where they are on the road so ground delivery goes right to your home. One of the reasons the ground delivery goes so well is they have two drivers per van, so someone is watching the road, and the other one is caring for the puppies and communicating updates for the family. They also have a limited number of slots for puppies traveling at one time. That’s always a nice option.” 

Taking to the friendly skies is another way to transport a puppy from Amber. “We also go through the airlines where your puppy can fly safely in the cabin with a flight nanny or in a crate. Both services are trustworthy, and we wouldn’t use them if they weren’t safe. They always go through a vet check and then another check at the airport to make sure your puppy is in good condition before leaving. There are definitely benefits to considering air transport, especially if you are close to a major airport. The puppy gets there in one day which gives you some peace of mind,” said Amber.  

Considering One of Amber’s Dog Breeds? Learn about the Mini Dachshund, Australian Shepherd, Chihuahua, Yorkshire Terrier, and Shih Tzu Dog Breeds

If you’re considering adopting a puppy, you should learn about choosing the right dog breed based on your lifestyle, family and household circumstances, and more. Bringing a dog into your life is not a light decision, so being as informed as possible will help you make a decision.

Amber offers a variety of dog breeds with different needs, energy levels, and versatility for all sorts of households. Read on to see if these dog breeds are exactly what you’re looking for. 


Mini Dachshunds

Whether you call it a wiener dog or a sausage dog, a Mini Dachshund puppy of any name is a wildly popular dog breed known for its little legs, long body, and huge personality. While they only grow about six inches tall, their bodies are double that size and grow up to a foot long, as long as a sub sandwich! Mini Dachshunds are diverse dogs with three coat types: Wire-haired, Long-haired, and Smooth-haired in various patterns and colors. 

Mini Dachshunds are jokesters and like to get into mischief, but underneath that bold bark is a sweet, affectionate family dog. Children love playing with Mini Dachshunds, and the feeling is mutual. While they can be great watchdogs, they can also be trained not to bark excessively. Mini Dachshunds are jesters and make their owners laugh at their silly antics. 


Australian Shepherds

If you’re looking for a puppy with the energy of the Energizer Bunny and a perpetual sunny attitude, an Australian Shepherd puppy or Mini Australian Shepherd puppy is a perfect match. An Australian Shepherd is a fantastic choice for an active family with the time to devote to their high exercise and mental stimulation needs. 

Often called “Aussies,” they are some of the smartest dogs on the planet, and they thrive when given a “job” to do to keep their attention focused. Their intelligence, versatility, and athleticism make them useful as working dogs on farms or ranches, herding livestock, and guarding flocks. As such, they may nip at children’s heels to keep them in line until trained properly, but they do not have an aggressive bone in their bodies and love children. Due to their trainability and intuition, Aussies and Mini Aussies make excellent therapy dogs.

As adults, Australian Shepherds will weigh 40-65 lbs. and stand 18-23 in. tall, and Mini Australian Shepherds will weigh 20-40 lbs. and stand 13-18 in. tall. Their coat colors and eyes are stunning, guaranteeing a beautiful dog no matter what color combination they are.



Chihuahua puppies are confident, compact tiny dogs. They are the smallest dogs in the world. They will only grow 6 lbs. and 5-8 in. tall as adults. A Chihuahua’s large, round eyes and comical bat-like ears give it an endearing appearance. Chihuahuas have apple-shaped or deer-shaped heads and long or short hair, all under the same breed standard. 

For a family wanting a tiny, spitfire companion that’s a mix of sassy and sweet, a Chihuahua is the perfect fit. While they can develop bold personalities, “Chihuahuas can be really timid, especially girls,” Amber noted. She works with each puppy to encourage their personalities to bloom and build confidence for those needing a boost.


Yorkshire Terriers 

Yorkshire Terrier puppies are another Toy breed with a personality bigger than their bodies! They are friendly, feisty, and high-energy weighing in at only 4-7 lbs. and growing 8-9 in. tall. 

Yorkies grow hair instead of fur, meaning they’re a great choice for those with allergies because they have a low amount of dander. Yorkshire Terriers also shed minimally, so owners will not be reaching for the lint brushes or vacuum every other day. 

One of the most prominent personality traits of a Yorkshire Terrier is confidence. They believe they are the head of the family and you’re just living in their world! Yorkies make great watchdogs and will alert you to anything they deem a threat, even if it’s the wind blowing leaves down the street. Early socialization and training are important for a well-rounded Yorkshire Terrier. 


Shih Tzus

Shih Tzu puppies are confident, self-assured lively puppies. Amber notes, “Shih Tzu puppies are very bold, not timid, not shy, and not hyper.” They are a good choice for first-time dog owners, seniors, and those with families including young children.

Like the Yorkshire Terrier, Shih Tzus are also considered hypoallergenic, rarely shedding. It is normal for Shih Tzu puppies to change colors as they grow older due to the growth of adult hair, hormones, and more. While bigger than Chihuahuas or Yorkies, Shih Tzus are still portable companions that can go everywhere with you where dogs are allowed. As adults, they weigh 9-16 lbs. and stand 9-10.5 in. tall. 

The Perks of Adopting a Pawrade Puppy From Trustworthy Breeders Like Amber

When you adopt a puppy from Amber, you don’t just go home with a dog. “Each puppy comes with a care package with items like a toy, a blanket, a bag of food, and a coupon book for NutriSource. All of our puppies are microchipped, and we include an educational pamphlet and registration papers. Depending on the puppy, we can negotiate breeding rights,” Amber notes. In addition to Amber’s perks, all Pawrade puppies come with a 3-year health guarantee, a health certificate, and 30 days of MetLife insurance. 

Amber adores working with Pawrade. “If I were going to buy a puppy, I can tell you from working with you guys – and this is to anybody that’s going to buy – they are so thorough. Everybody’s protected when a buyer gets a puppy through Pawrade. You know that dog is sound and healthy. There’s a lot of communication between Pawrade and us constantly. This is a great company, and if I were in the market to buy a puppy, I would go to you guys just because I know what goes on behind the scenes. You guys do a good job, and the buyers and sellers are safe!” 

If you’re interested in adopting a puppy from breeder partners like Amber, take a moment to browse through available puppies for sale. Finding your new puppy is as easy as clicking the “Reserve Me” button or calling our Puppy Concierge team to help you through our smooth, secure adoption process. We look forward to hearing from you!


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Lucy Hughes

Lucy Hughes has been teaching and writing professionally for half her life. She has a passion for helping people choose a puppy and lead an exciting life with their new furry companion. She enjoys spending quality time with her family and her beloved Golden Retriever, Bowie.

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