Why do the Sawtelle's only sell nature dogs in The Story of Edgar Sawtelle by David Wroblewski?

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Karen P.L. Hardison | College Teacher | eNotes Employee

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Edgar's grandfather, John Sawtelle, took great pains and care over a considerable length of time to develop a distinctly unique new breed of dog. He performed this breeding process at the Sawtelle farm in the barn and made meticulous records of each dog added to the breeding and the results of that breeding. Finally he came up with a breed that had all the attributes of intelligence, gentleness, good nature and trainability that he was aspiring to in a dog breed.

Whenever [John] came across a dog he admired, he made a point to get down and look it in the eye. ... He converted the giant barn into a kennel, and there Edgar's grandfather ... [developed a dog breed] know simply as Sawtelle dogs.

Dog breeding is a difficult, expensive and detailed business. Dog breeders must as a rule be single-minded and dedicated to selecting, caring for and nurturing the dogs and pups involved in the breeding process. Since the breeding process and business is such an intricate and detailed one, it is all encompassing and is most often the only business a breeder engages in. Thus, the Sawtelles sell only the Sawtelle dogs because dog breeding comprises their entire business.

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