What are your goals this year with your dog?

March 28, 2017

If you are a QK Client then we KNOW that your dog is very important in your life. One of the reasons that we love what we do at QK is because our clients care about their dogs. From their health and wellness to their exercise, training and just plain overall happiness, we are here to help! I think that it is essential to continually think about what you can do to keep your dog happy and healthy. We always say a tired, trained dog is a happy dog. Well, that is easy to say, but how about a plan? Whether your canine companion is a lap pet, a lazy couch lounger, a fence racing and yard protecting blur, a therapy dog, an exercise companion, a weekend field hunter or an extreme competition dog, thinking about goals makes it easier to help maintain stability, consistency and achieve accomplishments with your dog.

For example, I currently own 7 dogs and I have very specific goals and jobs for each dog. Our oldest Valley Girl is now 13, and she has had an incredible life of competitions and hunting. She still loves to work. With old dogs, it is important to keep them fit and trim as well as keep up with slower, less impact but regular long exercise walks. Additionally, keeping Valley Girl’s brain engaged with some regular work enables her to stay mentally challenged. Our goal is to keep her limber and feeling like she is just not left behind because she is the oldest. Valley gets to walk on the beach, go for boat rides, horse rides and, of course, lots of cuddle time.

After a stellar career in the show ring and the field, Elsie is now almost 11 years old and enjoying retirement. BUT, she is very athletic and needs to exercise quite a bit as well as keep her mind active or she gets very naughty. Our goals, again, are lots of long, slow exercising as well as field drills, chasing our AKC Grand Championship in the ring and hunting to keep her mentally stimulated. She also very much enjoys playing with her 2 puppies, Doozy and Timber.

Next is my little soul-mate, Treat! She is now 8 years old, and besides being the best cuddler ever, this field-trial bred lab loves to run. I have not enjoyed the best success with her in field competitions, but my goodness I have fun working her! Treat never really has a bad day; she is always happy and ready to work. She has suffered several injuries over the years (she runs faster than she thinks and has ZERO self preservation) and most recently just had TPLO leg surgery for a partially torn ACL. My goal has been lots of physical therapy to get her back running again so we can train, hunt, swim and have fun.

Next is Cuda… the big boy I never wanted. He was given to me as an 18 month old pup and I have enjoyed some nice field success with him. He was the first dog I won a blue ribbon with when he took a first place in his first qualifying field trial. Later he was the first dog that I jammed in an open-level field trial, and he has simply been an easy, consistent and steady dog to work. He also loves to hunt. Unfortunately, Cuda just does not get enough work and I been looking for a home for him. He loves people, neutered or female dogs, he is a wonderful house pet, he loves to hunt and work… he just does not tolerate other intact male dogs. He came to me with that issue and I just have not been able to break it. Anyone interested!?

Peety is a daughter of Valley Girl. Peety had an incredible derby career with me making the National Derby List in just 3 field trials. In 6 total derbies she accumulated 16 points. That is quite a record. Unfortunately, Peety suffers from epilepsy and I had to retire her from competition at only 3 years old. She is an absolute lover, she is kind, sweet and quite a comedian. She is now my husband’s best friend and side kick. We make sure to keep her active and we adore her companionship.

Next comes Doozy… my latest project. I have big goals for her! She is the pup that I carefully bred for, and I could not be happier with her looks, attitude, intelligence and field work. She is out of Elsie and Dual Champion Gamble’s Benney The Jet. My aspiration is to create my own Dual Champion! She is the first dog that I have taken into the show ring, and we have 8 points out of the needed 15 so far. She is also the first pointing dog that I have run in AKC field trials. She took two derby 3rd places with me and we have been training diligently towards the big stakes. I cannot wait to take this journey with her!

And finally there is Timber… Doozy’s brother that ended up coming back to us! Well, things happen for a reason. Timber is sweet, loves to run and loves to chase game, and he can be quite a handful! He is relatively behind in his manners and training than Doozy, but I work him diligently and I think that I will end up trialing him too. Right now he is too gawky for the show ring, but maybe he will fill out and bulk up. For now, he is in our home and in our hearts and I will make sure to keep him active, in training and working towards field competitions.

My dogs are my everything! They are my friends, my companions, a reflection of my work and passion for canine care and training, and they are ambassadors to Quinebaug Kennels. I am always striving to keep them happy, healthy and mentally engaged. I find that when I set specific goals, it drives me harder to stay focused and achieve success. No matter what the role your dog plays in your life, think about what you can do to help keep them physically fit and emotionally happy. Reach out to us at QK and share your stories and your goals. Have ideas to share!? Please email them to us. Need help with a ‘job’ for your dog? We can help there too!