My Three Labradors

August 19, 2011

Blu

Blu

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Angel

Angel

 

Kimber

Kimber

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No Tick X Kimber Litter

January 17, 2011

A year ago I researched stud dogs to breed my chocolate Labrador Retriever with.  I found a beautiful, hard-driving, athlete.  His name:  Ten Bears Road Trip QAA “Tick.”

My chocolate, Kimber should have come into season September 2010.  We waited and waited for her to come in.  Finally this past Friday, Kimber came in.  I called Anne Weaver to let her know the news.  Anne is married to Mike Judas, Tick’s owner.

At this time, I am in South Carolina with Kimber and Anne let me know that Mike is in Texas with Tick.  So, there will be no Tick X Kimber litter this cycle.  I am very disappointed.  There is just not enough time to make things happen without being rushed.  So we will plan another breeding with Tick next year.

I’ve been looking at another male here in South Carolina.  A Black Labrador Retriever.  I will post the info later as long as all goes well.

 

Wendy Porch

Kimber

November 19, 2010

Kimber was to have come into season the first of September.  She still hasn’t come in.  Now I’m hoping she will wait until the end of December.

For me, I would rather purchase a puppy in the spring for potty training.  Also, by fall, the puppy would be ready to pass his/her first hunt test!!

Kimber’s litter mate didn’t come into season the first time until she was 2 years old.  The second time she came in at 3 years old.

Maybe Kimber is telling me she wants to nail down her HRCH before she has a litter of pups!!  Sounds like a plan to me!  At this point, I’ll probably wait to breed her with Tick until she does have her HRCH title.

 

Kimber Earns Her HR Title

October 24, 2010

“Kimber” The Hunter’s Gunpowder And Lead earned her HR title at Southern IL HRC Hunt Test last weekend at Rend Lake.

"Kimber" The Hunter's Gunpowder And Lead working for her HR Title

"Kimber" The Hunter's Gunpowder And Lead working for her HR Title

I realize Kimber is my Chocolate Labrador Retriever but she truly is a special girl.  Kimber is the daughter of FC AFC Cuda’s Blue Ryder MH.  Ryder was an exceptional Chocolate Labrador Retriever as well as his father,  FC AFC CFC CAFC Barracuda Blue MH.

Kimber’s siblings are all doing rather well.  Her brother is with Chris Akin working to earn his CH and already has his MH.

She loves to retrieve and has a lot of drive and desire but let me go back a little bit in time.  I first saw Kimber when she was 11 months old.  I was told she was almost two.  Once I received her AKC papers after purchasing her, I found out she was 11 months old.  Her home?  A garage.  She had a kennel inside of the dark garage.  I knew her pedigree but didn’t care how good it was or wasn’t once she bolted out of that dark home of hers and ran to me.  She loved on me as if I had owned her since she was a puppy.  We bonded immediately.  I knew then that I wasn’t leaving her there a day longer.

"Kimber" The Hunter's Gunpowder And Lead working for her HR Title

"Kimber" The Hunter's Gunpowder And Lead working for her HR Title

The “trainer” who had her in MI where I found her said the Cuda pups were rather stubborn and hard to train.  I soon found out that his statement was truly off base.  Once I bought her, 2 other trainers that watched her work said that she had not had much if any proper training at all and that the collar had been used on her and not in the proper manner. Kimber is very easy to train.  She learns quickly and loves to work.  She was just in the wrong hands.

When I got her home, I took her out to retrieve bumpers.  She was just insane about it.  Loved it.  Alert and marked well.  I sent her to a trainer for a month or so to work on her force training.  When she came home, she and I worked on her “back” for blind work.  She was catching on very fast.  This past spring Kimber and I earned her SHR title with HRC and then she went to a trainer to work towards her HR title.

"Kimber" The Hunter's Gunpowder And Lead working for her HR Title

"Kimber" The Hunter's Gunpowder And Lead working for her HR Title

When Kimber and I worked and I handled her for her SHR title, we worked like a team.  We had a very strong bond and still do to this day.  People commented on our bond running at hunt tests and they still do.  People see us together and comment on how much she loves me and how close we are.

I’m trying to make a very long story short but it’s not very easy to do!

When Kimber went to the trainer to get ready for her HR title, she did well with training.  Please keep in mind how she lived the first year of her life, not much outside time, in a garage with a garage door closed so neighbors wouldn’t hear dogs barking. It was a man who was over using the collar on her.

Kimber started running hunt tests with the new trainer since he had been spending more time with her than I had.  She was doing the work but wasn’t working to her full potential.  Something was missing.  She and I earned her SHR title and went 4 for 4 passes.  She was happy and had and still has excellent line manners.  She’s a dream to run with.

"Kimber" The Hunter's Gunpowder And Lead working for her HR Title

"Kimber" The Hunter's Gunpowder And Lead working for her HR Title

She began to fail at her hunt tests.  It was not the trainer.  The trainer loves Kimber and she loves him to pieces.  What was missing?  To this day, I believe it was that she and I were not running together.  She had 1 pass towards her HR title and 2 failures.  After another failure, I told the trainer I wanted to try.  I knew she missed her partner.  I felt it in my heart.  We ran together at Gateway and she and I got our 2nd pass towards her HR title.  We then ran Saturday at Southern IL HRC hunt test and earned her title.  Kimber was happy running, her tail was wagging, she was alert and very happy.  She was a different Retriever altogether.

"Kimber" The Hunter's Gunpowder And Lead working for her HR Title

"Kimber" The Hunter's Gunpowder And Lead working for her HR Title

I truly believe that the reason she works well with me is because she knows I saved her from her prior living conditions.  I know she is thankful.  Some may think I’m nuts.  Let them.  I don’t care.  I know my dog.  I love her as if I had owner her since she was a pup.

"Kimber" The Hunter's Gunpowder And Lead working for her HR Title

"Kimber" The Hunter's Gunpowder And Lead working for her HR Title

What Kimber and I need to work on now is her confidence.  Her lack of confidence was man-made in her first 11 months of life.  She was born with drive and desire.  She had and still has plenty of that.  Judges and handlers enjoy watching her run and think she’s a great Retriever.

"Kimber" The Hunter's Gunpowder And Lead working for her HR Title

"Kimber" The Hunter's Gunpowder And Lead working for her HR Title

From now on, this special girl goes nowhere else to train.  No one else will handle her.  We are a team.  She stays with mom to train.  I will ask a million training questions, train with my friends, and she and I will learn all about earning her finished title together.  I am looking forward to working with her.  There is nothing more rewarding than training and handling your own Retriever.  She’s an amazing gal and she has a great future.  Together, Kimber and I are 6 for 6 passes.  Let’s see if we can go ten for ten and get that finished title next year!  Once she does that, it’s on to AKC!

"Kimber" The Hunter's Gunpowder And Lead working for her HR Title

"Kimber" The Hunter's Gunpowder And Lead working for her HR Title

Once Kimber comes into season, I am breeding her with Ten Bears Road Trip QAA “Tick.”  I am keeping a puppy from that litter.  I love Kimber with everything in me.  Her temperament is out of this world, her drive and desire are fantastic and Tick, well everything about that boy is amazing.  This will be a special litter of Chocolate Labrador Retrievers.  It will be one of the best bred litters of Chocolate Labradors.  I want this breeding to take place because I want a Tick/Kimber pup so bad I can taste it.  The best thing is that I will be training this pup myself from start to finish.  I’m looking very forward to this special event.

Please enjoy Kimber’s title hunt test photos from Southern IL HRC Fall 2010 Hunt Test.  Wayne Greenwell took them for me with my camera.  He did a fantastic job!!  Thank you, Wayne.  Josh Ward took some of us at our first HR Test together at Gateway HRC Hunt Test.  Hopefully he will edit and send them soon so I can post them here as well.

"Kimber" The Hunter's Gunpowder And Lead working for her HR Title

"Kimber" The Hunter's Gunpowder And Lead working for her HR Title, Going for the Diversion!!

"Kimber" The Hunter's Gunpowder And Lead working for her HR Title

"Kimber" The Hunter's Gunpowder And Lead working for her HR Title

Please feel free to read about Kimber and Tick at my Kennel Website:  Shadowhill Retrievers please click on upcoming litters.

Kimber at the office!

October 9, 2010

Kimber isn’t running in a hunt test this weekend because Mom had to run the office today.  My boss is in MO so I had to open.  😦  Not to fret, I have 55 minutes and 15 seconds left!

Needless to say, Kimber is bored and would rather be looking for some ducks than lying around the office with mom.

Look at this face…….she’s pleading with me to lock up so she can go play on such a beautiful day!

Shadowhill's The Hunter's Gunpowder And Lead "Kimber"

Shadowhill's The Hunter's Gunpowder And Lead "Kimber"

Gateway HRC Photos

October 9, 2010

These are photos of Kimber and myself that Matt Settlemoir took at the Gateway HRC UKC Hunt Test in St. Louis / St. Charles, MO last weekend at Busch Wildlife.

Kimber and I ran on Sunday for a pass towards her Seasoned HR Title.  She passed!  Kimber is the daughter of Cuda Blue Ryder.  She will be bred with Ten Bears Road Trip QAA “Tick” as soon as she comes into season.  You can read about the breeding at Shadowhill Retrievers

 

Kimber

Kimber The Hunter's Gunpowder and Lead Chocolate Labrador Retriever

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Kimber The Hunter's Gunpowder and Lead Chocolate Labrador Retriever

Kimber The Hunter's Gunpowder and Lead Chocolate Labrador Retriever

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Kimber The Hunter's Gunpowder and Lead Chocolate Labrador Retriever

Kimber The Hunter's Gunpowder and Lead Chocolate Labrador Retriever

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Kimber The Hunter's Gunpowder and Lead Chocolate Labrador Retriever

Kimber The Hunter's Gunpowder and Lead Chocolate Labrador Retriever

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Kimber The Hunter's Gunpowder and Lead Chocolate Labrador Retriever

Kimber The Hunter's Gunpowder and Lead Chocolate Labrador Retriever

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Kimber The Hunter's Gunpowder and Lead Chocolate Labrador Retriever

Kimber The Hunter's Gunpowder and Lead Chocolate Labrador Retriever

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Kimber The Hunter's Gunpowder and Lead Chocolate Labrador Retriever

Kimber The Hunter's Gunpowder and Lead Chocolate Labrador Retriever

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Kimber The Hunter's Gunpowder and Lead Chocolate Labrador Retriever

Kimber The Hunter's Gunpowder and Lead Chocolate Labrador Retriever

 

 

Whelping Supply List

September 18, 2010

WHELPING LIST:

When I had my litter, I put the following items in a place near the whelping box where I had easy access to them.  I had a built-in shelf in my room that I laid everything out on.  This helped me out a lot.  So if you have a coffee table or a small table of some kind to put in the room with you, it would be rather helpful.  I would organize each item in order of use when whelping pups.  I am sure that I am forgetting something.  If I remember anything at all, I will amend this list.

  • Thermometer – Use this to check the dam’s temp.  You may have to have it handy to check the pup’s temp as well in case they get chilled.  I also put a thermometer in the whelping box to make sure the temperature stays around 90 degrees.  Do not put a room thermometer close to the lamp as the reading will not be accurate.
  • Safety Scissors.  (Blunt) You want to use these to cut the umbilical cord.  You do not want to use sharp scissors as this can cause their cord to bleed.
  • Iodine.  This helps to dry the cord.  I used this once a day if not twice until the cord fell off.
  • Gloves.  Use these in case you have to help remove a puppy from the mother.
  • Syringe.  I used a bulb syringe (blue) to remove fluid from the throat and nose.  Be easy with this when sucking the fluid from the pup’s throat and nose.  I bought a bulb from the baby department at Wal-Mart.
  • Puppy Training Pads.  I used these in layers.  They have blue plastic backs.  After each birth, I rolled up the dirty pad and tossed it in the trash.  A new pad was then ready for the next newborn.  Once the puppies eyes are open and they are moving around and playing, please do not use these pads.  The puppies can choke on the plastic backing.
  • White Towels.  I used these to help mommy clean the puppies. 
  • Hemostats.  A friend of mine who is a Doctor gave me a sterilized pair of these.  They are great to clamp the cord.  Do not clamp too close to the body.  When cutting the cord with blunt safety scissors, cut on the side of the hemostats that is farthest from the puppy’s tummy.  Leave the hemostats on for a minute or two.
  • Alcohol and sterile cotton pads or gauze pads.  These are used to clean hemostats and blunt scissors after each whelping.
  • Hand Sanitizer.  Use this to clean yourself up after each whelping. 
  • Trash Bags. You will want trash bags close to you so you can throw soiled pads and paper towels away. 
  • Laundry Pail for dirty towels, sheets and/or blankets.
  • Spray Bottle of Vinegar Water.  For cleaning floor and whelping area in and around whelping box.
  • Waterless Shampoo for cleaning mom around her valvular area.  DO NOT USE THIS NEAR HER TEATS.  Wash teats with clean sterile unsweetened water. 
  • Paper Towels and Kleenex.  I have these handy in case I need them for a quick clean up of my hands. Baby wipes work well too.
  • Water Bowl so mother has access to water without leaving the puppies.
  • Heat Lamp.  You have to keep the whelping area warm for the puppies.  The whelping area needs to be 90-95 degrees.  If they get cold, it is not good.  It can be fatal.
  • KY Jelly.  You may need this in case a puppy gets stuck.  It’s better to have it than needing it and not having it.
  • Scales to weigh puppies.
  • Colored Paper Neck Bands to mark pups.  You can get these at JB Wholesale online or Dr. Foster’s and Smith. 
  • Heating Pad.  Wrap baby blankets around a heating pad to keep puppies warm.  Do not get the pad too hot as it can dehydrate the puppies.
  • Baby Blankets.  You can buy packages of receiving blankets from Wal-mart.  They are handy for wrapping around babies and around a heating pad.  You can never have too many of these.
  • Karo White Syrup and Bottles of Sterile Water – Unsweetened.  Babies need energy period.  If by chance mother isn’t producing milk, the puppies will have to get energy somehow.  Use a syringe to feed if need be.  Baby pups may also get cold.  When they do, they shiver to keep warm.  Shivering uses energy. 
  • Wysong Mother’s Milk.  This is a wonderful milk replacement.  I used it to feed my dog during pregnancy.  I used it in the pup’s mush.  I would have a container or two of this on hand in case the mother doesn’t want to feed or isn’t producing milk.  Be prepared for this.   
  • Cot or Bed.  You might as well get comfy.  You are going to be busy for the next several days and will be going on very little sleep.  After whelping is over and mom and pups are sleeping, I highly suggest you take a nap next to the whelping box too!  I slept in the room with mom and pups for the first 3 days and nights.  Dams can and will roll over on a pup.  The pup can die.  It is your responsibility to make sure the pups are safe.  You also need to make sure all teats are producing milk.  If not, you are going to have to rotate puppies to make sure each and every one of them get the required amount of food that they need.  You may also have to feed them a milk replacement such as Wysong Mother’s Milk.
  • Food and Coffee.  You will need both!  Hopefully your whelping room is near a bathroom too.  🙂
  • Surgical Shoe Covers and Disinfectant Spray.  I don’t care who it is.  Please never let anyone, including yourself near the pups and mother (whelping room) without removing shoes and pants.  If someone wants to see pups, have them bring a clean change of pants and change outside the whelping room door.  No shoes allowed in whelping room.  Spray the socks and shoe covers with spray.  Visitors should use disposable shoe covers over their feet and truly should change their pants.  You can carry germs and the parvo virus into the whelping area with you easily.  Parvo is everywhere, even in your own kennel.  Ask your vet.  Even a minute amount will wipe out a litter in a second. 
  • Notebook and Pen or Laptop.  You will want to document each puppy at birth, its condition, weight and such.
  • TV, reading material, iPhone, computer, camera, puzzle books or any kind of entertainment to keep you occupied during your waiting periods between pups.

Wendy Porch
Shadowhill Retrievers

Whelping Puppies. Part I

September 18, 2010

Are you expecting a litter of puppies?  If so, are you prepared for anything to happen?

Please know that I am no expert at all on this subject.  I do not pretend to be.  However, I have had and will do everything possible to properly prepare for my upcoming litter of puppies.

In 2002 I had a litter of puppies.  I read everything I could get my hands on to be prepared.  I whelped a litter of giant rare breed Pyrenean Mastiff pups.  One of the reasons they are rare is because the mother has trouble delivering the puppies as her uterus does not contract much at all.  I’m here to tell you when people say that larger dogs have fewer problems delivering puppies, well it is just not true.  It’s a myth so please do yourself and your dam a huge favor and do not believe this myth.  My dam wound up having a c-section with the last two puppies.  She wasn’t contracting through delivery and had to have a few shots to help her contract.  Towards the end, I had to take her in for the C-Section.

Just as you should not compare dog to dog on the line, please never compare dam to dam when expecting a litter.  Each dam is different and acts differently.  One may have no problem at all.  One may.  One may want to be alone, the next might want you by her side.  My female wanted myself and my Yorkie with her, yes my Yorkie.  It was the oddest thing I had ever seen!  She and Sporty were great pals.  If Sporty would go to the door in the bedroom, my girl would go nuts.  One dam maybe nervous, another may not be.  One might not be bothered by other dogs or people around, the other may very well be upset and nervous around others.  In my opinion, it is best for the dam to provide a sanitary and solitary place to have her whelping box away from all others. I had a 3 story home with 2 bedrooms on the top floor.  Once Venus was pregnant, she and I slept upstairs on the top floor away from everyone and everything.  I placed her whelping box in the bedroom next to the bed.  She got used to her box and loved it.  It was her safe quiet place.

Once I knew she was in the beginning stages of delivering the puppies, I called my vet and let them know.  I wanted to make sure someone would be on hand if any problems came about.

I made a list of everything I might need for my dam for before, during and after she had the puppies.  I first bought a large Rubbermaid container with a lid and each time I bought something, I stored it in that large container until it was time.  If you do this, it’s easy to keep everything in the container and add to it as needed each time you have a litter. I’m all about saving time when and where I can!!

Before and after the breeding, it is very important to feed the best diet you can.  I myself do not feed anything that contains chemicals and dyes in it.  It is most important to know not to over feed a newly expectant mother.  This can lead to problems when whelping.  The puppies can get to large for the mother and the dam can build up too much fat around her reproductive organs, both can lead to a C-Section.

When your female has approximately 4 weeks left in her pregnancy, I would gradually increase her feed up to forty percent.  At this time, the puppies are demanding more nutrition from the dam.  The puppies will get what they need and by doing so, they will take from the mother.  You want her to be in excellent health at all times.  You need to protect her from becoming underweight and sick.

I do not feed extra calcium.  This can lead to eclampsia.  I am not an expert on this subject at all.  I just remember my vet warning me about the dangers and risks.  Please read up on it ahead of time because once this process has started, it’s to late.  Eclampsia can and will become fatal before you know it.

When my girl came into season, I took her to the vet and she received her vaccination.  I will do this with Kimber as well.  A dog’s gestation period is approximately 63 days.  Three quarters of the way through this period, I then took her to the vet for worming.

I feel that worming is very important.  Round worms can be passed from the mother to the puppies.  It is important to worm for the health of the mother and the puppies.  Worms can be passed to the puppies through their mother’s milk.  I worm because I want my puppies to have a healthy start in life.  Please note  ****You do not want to worm the mother before 35 days into the pregnancy.  The babies are still developing and it is not safe for them to worm before half way through the pregnancy.  I am careful to wait until she is approximately 40-50 days through her gestation period.  It is very important to worm under the advice of your vet. I then worm again the day the puppies are born.  My vet gave me a dose to take home to give to my dam once all puppies were whelped.

There is a lot more to add to the article.  I am leaving for work and will make a list of items and write it on my blog of what to have on hand for the whelping period and items to have on hand after the whelping is completed.  Please feel free to come back and read all about it.

Again, I am not an expert on this topic.  All I can tell you is what I learned, what I went through, and it is not always as easy as it looks.  These are just my thoughts and what I did and what you can do to make your dam more comfortable, safe and healthy and what you can do to ensure that your puppies are safe and healthy.  Please always talk to your vet before taking anyone’s advice.

Wendy Porch
Shadowhill Retrievers

The Next Generation

September 7, 2010

This is a photo of my 8-year-old granddaughter handling Blu on a single mark.  The minute she wakes up she says, “Grandma, can I retrieve Blu?”  All shes wants to do is handle dogs and go fishing!  She is actually very good with my Labradors.  She learns quickly and is getting the hang of it.

She watched me work with Blu on blinds Saturday.  After she saw that, running  him on single marks wasn’t enough.  She motioned her arms as I did when handling him on the blind and asked if she could do what I did.  So, I sat up a blind on land after explaining to her what I was doing, how to do it and why I was doing it.  I explained the difference between a mark and a blind.  She understood completely.  She handled him on a land and water blind.  It was funny because I had to throw a blind into the water.  After I did that, she wondered why she wasn’t sending him on his name instead of back.

Mickey handling Blu on a Single Mark

Mickey handling Blu "Shadowhill's The Hunter's Blu Shadow on a Single Mark

Mickey and Blu, Shadowhill's The Hunter's Blu Shadow

Mickey and Blu, Shadowhill's The Hunter's Blu Shadow

I will be running Kimber at Midway HRC Fall Hunt Test.  I’m going to take Mickey with me as well as Blu so she can handle him at either a started test or a Jr. Handler test.  If they will allow her to run him in a started test, I’ll sign her up for that.  She’s very excited.

Wendy Porch
Shadowhill Retrievers
Total Retriever Photography and Supply Store

Hunt Test Training

September 7, 2010

I was at Busch Wildlife in St. Louis, MO Sunday.  We practiced for HRC and AKC fall hunt test season.  Kimber, my chocolate Labrador Retriever and I worked on our seasoned test for HRC.  She did really well.  Below are some photos that Matt Settlemoir took of us.  Thanks Matt!!! 

Kimber Chocolate Labrador Retriever

Wendy and Kimber, Chocolate Labrador Retriever

 

Photo by Matt Settlemore

Wendy and Kimber, Shadowhill's The Hunter's Gunpowder & Lead at Busch Wildlife in St. Louis, MO

 

Kimber training for seasoned hunt test

Wendy and Kimber, Shadowhill's The Hunter's Gunpowder & Lead at Busch Wildlife in St. Louis, MO

 

Hunt Test Training

Kimber on her Walkup

 

Busch Wildlife, St. Louis, MO

Wendy and Kimber, Shadowhill's The Hunter's Gunpowder & Lead at Busch Wildlife in St. Louis, MO

 

Kimber’s sire is Cuda’s Blue Ryder. 

Shadowhill Retrievers
Total Retriever Photography and Supply Store