Complaints & Reviews

deposit paid and still nothing to show for it

When I first reached out to Merle she was helpful and seemed genuinely interested in helping me with bringing home a new puppy. That soon disappeared. After I gave Merle my deposit to be on her waiting list things basically fell apart. I then noticed that the dam that was supposedly having my puppy was listed as a different color than what I was told. I double checked the Offa website and the dam was listed incorrectly there too. I then checked the health certification dates on a couple of other dogs and they did not match what was listed on the Castle Creek website. I reached out to Merle multiple times for clarification and she provided an explanation, but her words didn't hold much weight. In addition, she never contacted me to let me know when the dams where pregnant, or when the puppies were born. So, you're basically paying Merle upfront for nothing. Even four months later Merle has still not told me which puppies are left available for me to choose from. After I started to lose trust in Merle, I reached out to five other breeders, and not a single one asked for a deposit to be on the waiting list. Don't waste your time or money here.

Report a Breeder

I would rate this business as a MINUS five stars if possible. Run - don't walk - away from doing business with this "backyard breeder". This customer, a 25 year educator with two master degrees in education & currently a fifth-grade elementary school teacher, decided to adopt an AKC Cavalier King Charles Spaniel because she wanted to own and train a classroom "reading therapy dog" to help her under-resourced students with their English reading skills. So a Foster Family Agreement was signed with this breeder to help offset the high price on a teacher's salary. After three years of raising, training, feeding and caring for the "foster" dog, the ownership was contractually stipulated to be transferred to us upon successful completion of at least two litters for the breeder. Ultimately, the breeder kept two healthy litters of pups ($15, 000 value), took the dog back ($2200 value), kept our refundable deposit ($1400), refused to respond to our requests for our animal and our money, threatened us with legal action if we sued her. Did I mention a distraught, broken-hearted 14 year old daughter who loved the dog and who slept every night with her? Ultimately, Ms. Tucker - only when threatened in writing with our lawsuit - verbally claimed (without any documentation or verifiable evidence whatsoever) we were not taking proper care of the dog (it only had a routine, very minor ear infection which we were already treating under the supervision of a vet) so she arbitrarily decided to keep physical possession of the dog(!) A May 2015 comprehensive physical examination by a licensed Doctor of Veterinary Medicine at Surfside Animal Hospital (highly recommended) fully and completely documented the dog was, in fact, perfectly healthy and well cared for. My family is out THOUSANDS OF DOLLARS and have had to file a claim with the San Diego Better Business Bureau. A complaint has also been filed with the American Kennel Club (AKC). If the matter is not resolved to our complete satisfaction, we will have no choice but to sue this breeder in San Diego court - as have other past customers. Additionally, we are contemplating filing formal complaints with other consumer protection organizations including the CA Department of Consumer Affairs, CA Attorney General's Office and others. My advice, based upon my personal witnessing of the interactions with this breeder is simple. 1. Read ALL the negative reviews on Yelp below (including those below labeled as "not currently recommended") as they are accurate customer reviews consistent with our experiences. 2. Do a search for "be aware castle creek cavaliers" for more consumer review sites and public court links. 3. DO NOT SIGN ANY FOSTER FAMILY AGREEMENT as it is filled with vague requirements, loopholes and caveats that only benefits the breeder. In retrospect, I wish I had done just thirty minutes of public domain research before choosing this breeder. It is important for anyone considering a breeder to remember that this profession (unlike a veterinarian) requires NO specialized education, NO trade school, No professional experience, NO college degrees, NO professional certification, NO state or federal licensing and NO on-site inspections. Any high-school drop-out can become a full-time self-proclaimed breeder, groomer or trainer. Did I mention that we just discovered she listed our dog "Shasta" back up for sale on her web site to resell it to someone else? I truly believe this is documented evidence that the breeder is knowingly and intentionally operating a type of SCAM and CONSUMER FRAUD which needs to be exposed. Free to contact me with questions!

  • Po
    Porques Heise Jan 23, 2016
    This comment was posted by
    a verified customer
    Verified customer

    Castle Creek Cavaliers and this Breeder, Merle really cares about the breed and each and every dog she places. She has exquisite ethics for the breeding she does and has a lovely home environment. She is very passionate about the top quality of her dogs.

    Thank you Merle for what you are all about, the breed and making it the best it can be.

    0 Votes


I wouldn't advise anyone to get a puppy from this breeder, Merle Tucker. I purchased a puppy from her in...

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