Well Bred Dogs

Breeding puppies to the conformation standard is more than just “pretty dogs”.

I saw this illustration today and knew I just needed to SHARE it! It so perfectly shows how “purebred” dogs can look so different from well-bred dogs!

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Ahhh… My very first golden looked like the dog in the lower left hand corner. We loved her dearly and she was a very sweet dog but… She just wasn’t “pretty”. Fortunately, she had a wonderful temperament and lived a long, happy life with us. This dog started my life-long love for this breed and helped convince me I wanted not just “pretty” dogs but also dogs that were health tested (long before they were ever bred!)

Health testing is major event here held every year at a local health clinic put on by the Cavaliers of The West breed club. Why do I go to this particular clinic? I just love how organized and competent the gal that organizes and works so diligently every year to provide this service for the dog community. Every year, ALL of my dogs have their eyes dilated and are seen by a veterinarian ophthalmologist. They say “the eyes are the windows to the soul”. They can also be the first indicators of other disease processes!

Dogs over a year of age are also “heart tested” by a veterinarian cardiologist. Genetic heart diseases such as “SAS” (sub-aortic stenosis) along with other heart anomalies can be ruled out.

Then, all the paperwork is sent to OFA (Orthopedic Foundation of American); the registration organization that provides online access to health clearances.

The other big health clearances done in Golden Retrievers are x-rays of hips and elbows. I usually have my regular vet, who is adept at positioning for these x-rays, do them. Again, that information is sent to OFA. For a permanent “clearance”, dogs must be over two years of age. Another registration organization for hips is PennHip. These x-rays measure slightly differently than OFA x-rays; I usually have these done also. You can’t get too much information regarding “hip health” when considering a future breeding.

Copies of these health clearances are always given to new puppy owners. I just believe in total transparency in puppies I’ve bred.

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Deja (8 weeks old): April 2014

Other factors to consider when considering breeding a litter of puppies: Temperament! I live with what I breed and “good temperament” is a hallmark trait for this breed! By following the pedigree of any litter, I can generally predict the temperament of each puppy. Other factors of good temperament is socialization of puppies. We work hard here providing a LOT of early puppy socialization and send home information to new owners on how to continue that socialization for the benefit of that puppy as it grows into adulthood.

Last but not least is Longevity! Sadly, “man’s best friend” is never with us long enough. But through genetic research of ancestors, hopefully they live a long life for this breed. This is a big goal for us in any litter also.

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Doodle (7 weeks old): December 2014

“Looks”, by this time, that is almost icing on the cake! But by breeding to the Golden Retriever standard and after being evaluated by judges through dog shows, our goal is always to produce the next conformationally correct dogs! Do all of our dogs end up in the show ring? No! But many could be shown! And many live in “pet homes” pampered and loved that attract attention and praise when walking down the street! They are “pretty”!

Lofty goals for any breeding/litter of puppies, huh? This is what we’ve done over our thirty years being involved in this breed. Generation after generation, staying true to the golden retriever standard, improving each generation as we continue our life-long love for this breed.

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Grand Champion Tazo: Gone but never forgotten! Blessed to have had this dog in my life!

 

JEnnifer & MArk ~ Jema Golden Retrievers

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Puppies!

Breeding plans and puppies excitedly anticpated this summer!

I think the actual breeding of two dogs is always the most stressful! Many think the most stressful time is the actual delivery/whelping of puppies but to me, that has always been fairly straight forward. It is the actual breeding of the two dogs centered around timing, testing, and trips to the vet that stress me out!

After much consideration, we’ve decided to breed our two girls now. CH Deja is being bred to CH Journey who lives in Las Vegas, NV. Journey’s owner and vet have been wonderful to work with to make this breeding happen. So far, we have had one breeding done and are watching Deja’s progesterone level to time the second breeding that will mostly happen this Friday.

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CH Hillcrest Blessed Crossing to Avalon; “Journey”
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CH Jema’s Deja Brew; “Deja”

 

We have also decided to breed our “almost champion” girl, Doodle. We are going to use frozen semen from our Grand Champion boy, Tazo, who is no longer with us. Doodle’s cycle, like Deja’s, seems to be a quick rise in progesterone (ovulates early in her cycle) and it is only by chance that after taking her in for a progesterone test to see where she was at that we realized she had already ovulated! Because we are using frozen semen, we can successfully breed Doodle a bit later in her cycle so we haven’t “missed” with her breeding. Doodle’s first breeding will be this afternoon.

Tazo (New Champion)
GCH CH Jema’s Mocha Kiss; BISS “Tazo”
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Jema’s Rule The Roost; “Doodle”

Now I had hoped the girls would be a week or more apart of each other in their cycles but that is not the case. We potentially could have them deliver their puppies on or close to same days! Oh boy! In truth, they will likely whelp their puppies, if they actually conceive, a few days apart! I’m already thinking exactly how I will manage two litters of puppies at one time? Hmm??

The reason for breeding both girls is simple. In case either of them have problems, the other can “foster” any of the other puppies. I don’t expect any problems but you just never know. And if I’m going to be home with puppies, I will be home with puppies! It does seem like a good use of my time to give both litters the time and attention they will need to be the most well-adjusted, healthy puppies as possible!

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CH Gaitway-Jema’s Kiss And Tell BISS; “Rooster” as a 9 week old puppy

This week has been hectic; we will be at our vet’s office every day this week! Between progesterone tests and inseminations, we will have one or both girls at the vets. Thankfully, dear hubby is available to help most of the days. Other days, I will take the girls to the vet. The “plan” has been outlined, based on testing, so at least I have the support of my wonderful vet and her staff to help make all of this possible!

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CH Deja and her puppy, “Pixel” (Jema’s Focus On The Future)

I’m looking forward to having puppies again! It has been almost two years since we’ve had puppies! It seems so much has happened in those two years… we’ve lost our wonderful boy, Tazo and his daughter, Deja has now become a champion in that time. We are looking forward to the next generation of champions in the making! Crossing our fingers as we move forward here at Jema Golden Retrievers!

Rooster: The Golden Retriever

Time flies… Never take it for granted!

As the Rooster X Avery puppies go to their new homes, it made me think of Rooster when he was younger (he is 6 years old now). Going through old photos always brings mixed feelings… Some wonderful memories but also some sad ones thinking of dogs no longer with me. But seeing the 8 week old pups sired by Rooster… Just DARLING!

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Rooster x Avery pups at their first vet appt. All checked out and did fantastic on their first adventure.

Rooster is ALWAYS ready for a game of “fetch” or “tug”. I found this old photo of Rooster as a young pup playing tug with my old girl, Luna. Luna was always very patient with puppies and young dogs but she wasn’t going to just give up a toy either! I miss Luna very much; she was my constant shadow.

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Rooster (left) and Luna (right) playing tug-of-war with a dog toy.

It is hard looking back on old photos. They always bring to mind so many memories. Here, Rooster is only two years old or so out in our pasture waiting for me to throw that ball. His natural stance is practically perfect! Now like back then, he looks better with less handling. It is hard to imagine that 7-8 week-old puppy has now grown up into the champion (almost grand champion) I believed he would be when he was just a pup.

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Rooster out in the field. Such a GORGEOUS boy!!

Time flies for all of us! Remember to hug your doggies and never take them for granted. If I was to find a fault with “(wo)man’s best friend”, it would be they are never with us long enough.

Puppies: They Grow So Fast!

Puppies growing; start on solid food.

Seven puppies IS a lot for mom but Avery is doing a wonderful job with her babies!

I can hardly believe the Rooster X Avery puppies are already four weeks old! Time seems to just fly by!! I am so thankful Sandy, who chose Rooster for the sire of Avery puppies, keeps me “in the loop” by sending puppy photos. And here I share those photos with you…

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Belly Up to the Milk Bar! 
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Helping Mom out by starting pups on solid food
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Pups are really growing! 
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Definitely a full tummy here! Love when pups sleep like this! 

1.5 Week Old Puppies

Puppies smell “mom” and make their way to the “milk bar”!

Aww… Miss Lavender seems lost in finding mom! How cute to see pups squirm to get to the “milk bar”! Mom is Avery; pups sired by our boy, CH Rooster.

While it may seem like a good idea to help this puppy, it is so important for the puppies’s development to move on their own. If helped, which I frequently do with my puppies, it can lead to development delays in learning how to use their legs to walk later. Having had this problem with my last litter of puppies, I will, from now on, cheer them from afar as they learn to move on their own!

P.S. Thank you, Sandy, for sending me this vid! Too cute to NOT share!!

Miss Lavender negotiating her way to the “milk bar”

Jema’s Strutting My Stuff

Jema’s Strutting My Stuff having a blast at a recent agility trial!

It is wonderful when dogs can be multi-purpose excelling in a variety of venues! Here is “Strut”; one of my “puppies”! All grown up and competing in agility trials now. Kudos to his owner, Michele, for not only the training she does with all of her dogs but also the mutual love and adoration she has for her dogs! I couldn’t ask for a better home for one of my “puppies”!

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Coming out of the weave poles with a stunning tight turn over the double jump!

 

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Jumpers Run on January 7th. Tight tuck over the jump! 

NEW PUPPIES!

So happy to hear Avery and pups are doing well. 5 girls and 2 boys!

HUGE congrats to Miss Avery whelping her 7 puppies (5 girls; 2 boys) in the wee hours this morning! Rooster? Well, the guy is definitely smoking his cigar patting himself on the back, LOL!

Mom and puppies are doing well, I’m told. I predicted Avery’s due date to be tomorrow; I guess the babies were ready sooner so… Here they are!

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New owners are thrilled with their puppy! Always good news to hear!!

Rooster X Trevi puppy, Gaddy, (formally Mr. Blue collar) in his new home. At 10 weeks old, I’m told he has a good grasp of all primary commands. His owner also states how incredibly smart he is!

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LOVE hearing puppy news and how pups are settling into their new homes. And to think that more puppies are expected next week by Rooster with Avery… I can’t wait to hear how the whelping goes? How many? How many boys and how many girls? I’ll keep you posted…  (Wishing Sandy an easy whelping preferably not at 3 a.m.! Crossing fingers for a healthy litter!!)

7 Week Puppy Evaluations

Rooster x Trevi Puppies at 7 Weeks of Age

I woke up this morning to receive such a wonderful surprise! Puppy evaluations and stacked photos sent to me from Sandy. I am totally smitten with each and everyone of these puppies! GORGEOUS BABIES!! Good job Rooster x Trevi!! And THANK YOU Sandy for coming to Rooster with your sweet and beautiful girl!!

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Blue Boy

I’m told this fellow can pick up and retrieve a thrown duck!

Green Boy
Green Boy
Red Boy
Red Boy
White Girl
White/Pink Girl
Yellow Girl
Yellow Girl

A good time was had by all! LOVE those smiling faces!!

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Left to Right: Yellow, Pink, Blue, Green, Red

 

Rooster x Trevi Puppies: 6 Weeks Old

Rooster x Trevi 6-week old pups x 5 puppies

The darling puppies are now 6 weeks old; time sure does fly by! I’m told they are chunky weighing between 12-13 lbs a piece! Look at those beautiful heads!!

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Sandy has wonderful play areas set up for all her puppies to explore both inside and outside (weather permitting). These are going to be very well socialized puppies!

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