Montana has always been one of the last best places to take a stand against the animal rights/anti-breeding groups that have swarmed the US like a plague of locusts. This year we are literally under attack. I can't even keep up with the anti-breeding bills coming through the House and Labor committee!
With every House Bill proposed, the words are identical, poorly written, unenforceable, never edited from year to year, only the title changes. Usually they are brought forth by an uniformed, anti-puppy mill (progressive?) Democrat who bought their irresponsibly bred mutt at the local shelter. (Yes, I actually ask elected legislators where they get their dogs!)
Wondering how it became a badge of honor to own a poorly bred, unwanted dog, sometimes with a dangerous/unstable DNA combination? Those PETA/HSUS TV and website campaigns have been powerful! I equate them to the campaign of lies and alternative facts that Breitbart and Fox News uses...and liberals lap it up off the floor in the exact same way, maybe even more, because doggies are cute.
I always breathe a sigh of relief when I count the Republican majority on legislative committees...and that is a sad admission coming from a Democrat! This year a Republican from Polson has brought forth the worst of them - HR 582. The AR groups, have done it. They have found a chink in the armor and may very well get through the gate. The hearing is March 23rd.
In 2015 we (responsible dog breeders from various dog clubs around Montana) battled both HSUS and PETA lobbyists and I was so proud of my common sense Montana legislators for utterly rejecting them.
These bills are so badly written that they can easily be interpreted to read that anyone who sells ONE dog a year, will be regulated as a commercial breeder. There is no exemption for people who compete with their dogs. Frankly, eight intact bitches is nothing to a person like me who is trying to manage two breeds...one of which is amongst the rarest in the world.
FACT: Every city and county in Montana has ordinances that deal directly with pet breeding, kennel requirements and licenses. If they have a problem with local pet breeders, they can change them easily enough to directly address it. Both HB 570 and HB 582 are unenforceable at the state level, if they cannot already be enforced at the local level. The waste of time, energy and state tax payer money chasing an AR/HSUS/PETA backed agenda is unacceptable.
Purebred Hobby and Preservation breeders pay the highest price by legislation like this, as we are left to fight a two sided front, battling an overreaching government as well as the viscous PR assault of misinformation and lies by those involved in the Rescue/Shelter/Animal Rights communities.
Make no mistake: THIS IS WAR. Their goal is to stop all pet breeding showing no mercy to anyone. Most people don't realize that Shelters and Rescues have zero regulation,pay zero taxes and have access to an endless source of dogs, importing across state lines and even other countries when their supplies of locally bred puppies and dogs runs low. They will win and stay in business forever as more and more responsible purebred dog breeders opt out of the war zone.
If they take us down in Montana the other less populated states will be a breeze...and you will be buying your next puppy from a highly regulated/high volume puppy mill in a non-house environment, or a mutt puppy from the pound, that was probably imported from Asia.
Things are looking good after the Tina X Toby breeding and we should have puppies toward the end of March! I am most likely going to breed Storm to Toby via TCI as well, maybe over summer...she is notorious for tossing me heat cycle curve balls. I do have a few puppy reservations available.
The 2016 Sussex girls Twinky and Margery are looking good! If they both hold their bites through six months old, I may keep them both, if not I may sell one over summer. Regardless, both are definitely show quality. Happy, happy! We may try for a fall litter, if not then I will have two nice bitches (both with good bites) to breed in 2018. We are really hoping to place a few in working or performance homes!
The list of work projects on my house, both inside and outside, is super long this year so dog events are taking a backseat until summer or later. I have everything from agility and hunt tests, to barn hunt, obedience and conformation to somehow squeeze in. It's one of those kinds of years. We are definitely getting a slow start, but will get out there eventually.
We are getting ready to do the first breeding of the year and progesterone testing has begun for Tina. Our wonderful reproductive specialist, Dr Milan Hess in Littleton, CO will be performing the TCI (transcervical insemination) with the Toby semen. She has done two surgical AI's for me with Spanky and Zeeza, and both produced good sized litters. I am hoping the weather holds and I get an easy drive through Wyoming.
I feel like I'm already running late and trying to catch up, which is not exactly how I was hoping to start the New Year!
I was beyond thrilled when all six of the Faith X Maverick puppies passed their heart clearances and maintained good bites through the first 10 weeks. :D We will be hoping for another Sussex litter sometime around the spring 2018.
Tina has come into season and we will be breeding her to Toby's frozen semen via TCI, probably next week. This is a very exciting breeding, and I hope it's the start of a GREAT year.
"Margery" Hellfire Has Faith in Me & "Twinky" Hellfires Twinkle of Faith
Today was a great day to be a field bred english springer spaniel breeder! In November the dog we bred Storm to this year, a dog who had previously won the Canadian National Championship, won the National Amateur Championship. Today he won the National Open Championship and became NFC NAFC CNFC Blackrivers Tanner. We are so happy for his owner Jeff Miller and of course, our Storm X Tanner puppy owners. The last dog to win a triple National Championship status was NFC 2X NAFC CNFC Saightons Scud - a dog that dominates Maia's pedigree.
NFC NAFC CNFC FC AFC CFC Blackrivers Tanner
But it gets better! The dog I bred Tina to, Macks, a dog I bred out of Navy X Toby, finished the National Open with a Certificate of Merit, CM, honoring him as one of the top 10 dogs in the US this year. We are just so happy for his handler Lynn Miller, who has trained, and believed in Macks for a long time, and over the moon happy for his owner's Gary and Mhari Peschel.
Macks is a full brother to Haley - who we are hoping to breed for the last time in 2017...probably to my dog Ice, since I have yet to get a puppy from him.
FC AFTW Paragon's Bratach Bhan Macaoidh of Hellfire "Macks"
Our breeding plans are very fluid and uncertain this year! We will for sure be breeding Storm (not sure to who yet) and are hoping Haley will have a normal heat cycle this year (she didn't last year). If I can make it work, I would like to try and breed Tina to Toby (via frozen semen).
There is a good possibility I will be placing a couple spayed young adults and/or retired girls this year.
The Tiki Twins have left the building! Losing Bones so soon after they were born made it a bittersweet day as a piece of my heart left as well. I am sad to say that Tiki herself will soon be leaving. I have found a lovely home for her in Canada, with a Mickey X Mia puppy to keep her company. She is a truly wonderful dog and we will miss her!
Tiki and her two girls
The Faith X Maverick Sussex puppies are almost 4 weeks old and all six are strong, active and doing great!