Monetary Deposits & Adoption Selection Process

When adopting a puppy through PuppyAvenue.com (whether online or here at our house), we look at what would be the best fit for both the puppy and family desiring the puppy.  We have learned from a few limited past experiences where an adoption went sour-- oftentimes it was due to situations which were avoidable.  If we had known certain information prior, we felt we could have helped the customer better choose a fitting puppy.  Because we need to gather as much information as possible, we have approximately 6 forms to fill out in person and each adoption can take 1-3 hours depending on the amount of questions or past experience of the adoptee family.  The final say is in the hands of Puppy Avenue & we reserve the right to stop an adoption at any time for an undisclosed reason if we feel the puppy is better fit for another family.  We have been in the breeder world for a very long time and believe we have the knowledge of what's best for the puppy.  

Furthermore, if you are requesting additional information on your puppy (i.e. pictures, current puppy weight, parent's pictures, etc) and you feel it is necessary before you make a decision to put a monetary deposit down on the dog, you must understand those requests do NOT temporarily hold the puppy.  If you choose to forgo putting a hold down to wait for additional information, PLEASE NOTE THE PUPPY IS STILL FOR SALE DURING THIS TIME we are gathering the answers to your request(s)!  This is very important to understand as every puppy is unique and obviously there isn't always a backup puppy to sell you.  Additionally, we have had adoptions take place, and then a customer makes demands after the fact.  In order to provide you what you need, we require all reasonable demands contingent upon the sale are made known PRIOR to any money exchange.  Our website is 24/7 and is never offline.  If you are certain a puppy is right for you, monetary holds can be placed any time which will guarantee the puppy is yours.  Please keep in mind the holds are puppy-specific, non-refundable and non-transferrable. (**The only rare case an online deposit would be voided is if a person or family is currently at the house looking at the a puppy as the deposit comes through online.  The appointment at the house would trump an online deposit being made at the same time.  However, if the scheduled appointment hasn't arrived to the house (and are even mid-trip coming to our house) and a deposit was made, then the online deposit takes precedence over the appointment.) 

Our adoption contracts are fulfilled by a successful pre-adoption questionnaire form being filled out in person or via email & a completed cash/credit/check transaction made to secure your puppy's reservation monetarily.  

Warranty Refunds/ Medicine Reimbursements

We provide you more information & explanation in person regarding these warranties, but in short VPB = Virus, Parasite, Bacteria Protection.  Puppy Avenue offers many levels to our V.P.B. Free Correction warranties (15/90/180 days) as well as a 1-year genetic defect warranty.  CA state law says every breeder or pet store must provide their customer with 15 days protection on V.P.B. at a minimum.

We use this 15 day protection as the base level to our warranty and it is provided to each of our customers.  We also provide 90 & 180 day extensions for a small fee.  Our warranties are only applicable to the original purchaser so if you re-home or gift your puppy the warranty expires.  If you purchase a warranty extension, we will cover the COST OF MEDICINE only for the 90 or 180 days which corrects any virus, parasite or bacteria infection.  Please keep in mind, in 15 years, we have never needed virus correction most likely due to our aggressive vaccination protocol.  Parasite & Bacteria corrections are more commonly needed.  You must get prior approval from Jason or one of Puppy Avenue's veterinarians before proceeding with treatment or purchasing medicine which you want to be covered.  This is because we have found certain medicines to work better than others, and although they may cost more up front, we would rather the more effective medicine be used first.  We provide a 24-7 call/ text phone line which can field your requests.  Please use the number on your paperwork given at the time of pickup. There will be no refunds for vet bills, medicines, tests, etc if Puppy Avenue is not notified prior to treatment. 


Even if you have had a puppy less than a day, we do not allow a puppy return (or trial period) due to our Veterinarian's advice & supervision on possible infection outside of our care.  The only puppy returns allowed under CA law are due to a pup being "unfit for sale" in which a licensed CA Veterinarian diagnoses an irreversible & serious issue, then drafts up a written document satisfying the CA law's requirements.  We do not allow returns for personality, color, size, coat, general appearance, "greying" or silvering, or any other physical attribute.

Pricing & Sales Tax

Pricing is determined on what we feel is fair market value of a breed at a certain time of year.  Pricing also takes into account desirability and a certain pup's physical attributes which affect desirability (Size, color, gender, furcoat, facial structure, general appearance, etc).  When a puppy of ours becomes available, we usually search other advertising websites for pups in the same breed which reflect similar characteristics to ours and try to price around or just below that median price.  Our price starts off at it's highest and remains unchanged for 2 weeks at minimum.  After the 2 weeks is up and the advertising campaign is finished, we weigh the dog and determine if he/she could handle a transition.  If we feel the puppy is ready, we will discount the puppy up to $100-300 off to generate more interest and a quicker re-homing.  We do the same thing every 10-14 days until the puppy sells.  If we feel the puppy is still too small to re-home we usually leave the price unchanged.  

We are a company so we must charge a mandated 8% sales tax.  This is on every single puppy no matter the payment method.  We cannot waive the sales tax and the potential customer should account for this 8% on each sale.  By doing a "mock adoption" on our site it will total the cost (with sales tax) on a potential puppy prior to asking for any credit card information.  We encourage you to do this to know the total prior to arrival.

Puppy Coat or the "Tweener Phase"

Once you have purchased a puppy from us, there is a phase every puppy goes through we feel is necessary to inform our customers about.  Each puppy has a puppy coat & puppy teeth--both of which they shed/lose before acquiring their adult coat or adult teeth.  The rates and severity of both being shed or lost differs from pup to pup.  While it's normal for a puppy to lose it's puppy teeth somewhere between 5-9 months of age, we have had past puppies lose them all the way up to 13 months.  While it's normal for a puppy to lose it's puppy coat, the severity of the loss depends on genetics, diet, stress levels, medicines, etc.  Please be aware the loss of the puppy coat and the adult coat acquisition is a long process between months 4-12 and does not reflect the quality of pup you purchased. IT'S NATURE RUNNING IT'S COURSE.  You can do some minor adjustments to possibly speed up the process but no two dogs are alike.  For more information on how to lessen the "tweener phase" and for past examples of what worked for other customers, please contact Jason at 619-770-7648.  It's a pretty common thing for the puppy cute stage to wear off around month 3 or 4 and the "tweener phase" tends to disappoint some customers.  We ask you to be patient as the adult coat and look will come in over the next 6-9 months & your dog will be just as gorgeous as when in the puppy stage.  No one is immune to this phase as even our own personal dogs went through a phase where we thought we bought something sub-par in the looks department. Luckily we waited it out. Dont worry, time heals all. :)  

Personality of the puppy

We get this question just about every call.  Our opinion is approximately 10-20% of a dog's personality can be attributed to genetic makeup.  The rest is left to environment & person raising the dog.  We have seen too many absolute 180-degree reversals in canine personality to not see it this way.  Puppies are puppies... they will play, eat, and sleep.  Adult personalities don't peek through until approximately month 6 or 7.  In our opinion, a puppy can also be molded into what you determine is acceptable or non-acceptable.  Just like children!  Puppies are like a piece of clay you can mold them to what you want.  The most recognized example of correcting behavior is Cesar Milan.   He is able to do this because he can communicate with dogs on a higher level.  This comes with experience and time.  That being said, we are here to provide you a well-thought-out canine education and give you the tools for a good transition.  Sounds cliche, but we feel we are the best provider of a small breed puppy education in the United States.

Weight Guarantee & Use of the term "TEACUP"

Puppy Avenue NEVER uses the term "TEACUP" to refer to smaller breed puppies on the phone or in our advertisements.  However, there are a few spots on our website which display the term ONLY for Google search recognition.  Believe it or not "teacup" is the most searched term for any breed of dog on Google.  That being said, we need to be searchable although we will never use the word since there is no widely accepted definition of the word.  

As for us here, weight guarantees have never been given and will never be given at Puppy Avenue.  Although we use a precise formula to chart the puppies weight which uses multiple factors like (parents' weight, head size, paw size, and age of the puppy) the formula can still be wrong.  We do not provide any sort of refund for puppies which grow to be below or above breed standard at adulthood.  The breed standards for weight, height, and general appearance you will find listed online are STRICTLY for show-quality dogs in the ring.  Since we will never claim to provide show quality (ONLY PET QUALITY), we want to be 100% clear on this issue.  We can try our best to get close (and in most cases we do), however, there are always exceptions to every rule and we don't want someone to think we purposely misled them or the quality of their dog somehow decreases in any way with an altered weight.  

Hereditary/Congenital Disorders

Please understand all puppies which are sold by Puppy Avenue have been vet-checked for genetic disorders prior to leaving our home. On top of our puppies being checked by the vet; the parents to the puppies have been checked to be free and clear of any disorders.  Just like humans can acquire a condition by the simple pleasure of aging, dogs possess the same possibility.  By purchasing a small breed puppy you are putting yourself at risk for disorders such as knee failure, hip failure and liver failure. Although the risk is minimal, we do want you to understand a small percentage of small breed puppies can have disorders.  However, we take precautionary measures to ensure this number is as low as humanly possible.  For example, in the Maltese breed, we will only use breeding parents between 5-12 lbs as it is a very sensitive breed overall and in our opinion 3 lbs parents do not provide healthy puppies.  This is due to past personal experiences and customer experiences with other breeders or pet stores.  We hear some pretty alarming and sad situations from customers and we want to provide something much different.  In our opinion, it's all about how you handle an unfortunate situation if it arises.   

Registration Papers

Some puppies sold by Puppy Avenue are puppies we sell on behalf of a breeder we know.  The rest of our puppies are from our own family lines of dogs.  At times there will be instances where we do not receive registration papers from a breeder upon acquisition of a litter-- however 99% of the time we do have the registration papers within 14 days of selling a puppy.  Please note: if registration papers are extremely important and vital to the sale, please call and verify we do have them in hand prior picking up your puppy. Most customers are buying simply for a family pet so registration papers are not a must have.  According to CA law, please allow up to 180 days after the sale for Puppy Avenue to get you the registration papers.  If we cannot provide the papers, we promise to refund you according to California law.

Puppy Avenue has no affiliation with the registration firms: AKC, ACA, APRI, NPCR, ABKC or CKC and take no responsibility for their actions or lack thereof.

Shot/Vaccination Records

All puppies advertised on our website have had at least one (1) vet check and two (2) rounds of vaccines at minimum.  Pups which have been on our site for longer than 2 weeks will have three rounds of vaccines.  We provide each customer a shot record at the time of pickup.  This record has EXTREMELY IMPORTANT information for your veterinarian.  Please do not lose this paper and have this information with you before heading to your veterinarian appointment.  We have been called before by a panicked customer asking for us to provide the shot record immediately to their vet because they forgot.  We are not always home and readily available to scan or send a shot record at a moment's notice.  **For puppies being shipped, we usually send the shot record a few days after arrival as to allow the excitement to settle down and not overwhelm you with too much information at once.

Shipping Restrictions

We ship approximately 2 times per week.  These days are typically Thursdays & Sundays.  Sometimes (depending on the Cargo facility hours) we will make exceptions to ship another day.  If you designate an airport Delta services with Live Animals, we will find the best flight for  your puppy on one of the days we ship.  Not ALL FLIGHTS offered by an airline are available for live animal cargo.  We are one of the original online shippers of animals in the United States, so we appreciate you giving us the courtesy of finding the best flight for your puppy.  Restrictions are as follows:

1. Snub Nose/ Flat Nose Breed restrictions.  The airlines take very precautionary steps to making sure these puppies fly safe.  We must follow their guidelines which change year to year sometimes season to season.  This may cause a flight to be changed, delayed to a different day, or different airport.  Please know, the puppy's health is #1 priority before anyone's schedule-- including ours.

2. Dash Shipments.  A very small percentage of airports are Delta Dash during certain hours.  Typically, these belong to the smaller airports.  For Dash, if the ONLY flight option for your puppy falls within the Dash Shipment category, we may be required to charge an additional small fee to cover the shipping. Dash Shipping will not be below $50 nor exceed $100.

3. Canada Customers.  Sometimes we must charge a bit more to ship a puppy to Canada (depending on the airport & time of year).  Please understand if you're a potential customer in Canada & want your puppy shipped for the price you've paid in US Dollars.... it's a case by case basis.

4. Weather.  (Usually only applicable in the middle of the summer heat or the coldest of winter months).  We ship out of SAN  & the Cargo department treats us very well.  It's always going to be a case by case basis here as well.  Shipping restrictions can even be made by the pilot, 5 mins before takeoff... if he or she feels the plane is too heavy due to baggage or weather and wants to remove the live animal cargo from the flight -- the call can be made to do this. While not likely, if one of these types of issues happen, please do NOT blame us, because the control is out of our hands.

5. Delays / Overnight Kenneling.  Some puppies are sent via commercial airline, Puppy Avenue has no direct affiliation with Delta and United Airlines and is not responsible for delayed flights, cancelled flights, re-routings & over night kenneling. Of course we use their services and will do our best to provide up to the minute information, but please understand we do not operate the planes.  Once the puppy is tendered at San Diego Airport Cargo facilities we have no further control over the delivery of your puppy.  It's up to the specific airline to get your puppy to you.  If you are dissatisfied with the delivery or service the airline is giving you - please contact their customer service department, not ours.

Yelp Discount / Referral Discount

We do offer a small discount via our Yelp.com profile.  This must be purchased directly on our Yelp and you will be given a 6-digit code.  We are searchable on Yelp.com by searching "Puppy Avenue" in "Escondido, CA".  The code will need to be given to us by the time of pickup to ensure you get the discount. 

Referral Discounts are given to customers who have purchased a dog from us since our inception in 2005.  The amount is usually between $50 - $100 depending on the purchase price of the current dog desired.  The amount is sent via check to the prior customer.  Prior customers are verified with our records to validate the discount being offered.  Lastly, a prior customer can grant their friend/referral the amount of the discount in the form of a credit and deny the check themselves.

Legal Jurisdiction

When purchasing your new puppy from Puppy Avenue we ask you agree to our warranty policy in its entirety prior to checking out.  As a part of that guarantee you are stating you understand any civil action against Puppy Avenue must take place in the state of California.

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