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Spring 2024 Planned puppies!!!

Winter Greetings.

As predicted, our planned breedings for Fall 2023 were a complete success and we had some lovely babies who have gone to their homes and are enriching the lives of their families. We brought some new families into the fold and are enjoying having them on board.

We are planning to repeat the breeding with Poncho and Phoenix as we had some absolutely beautiful pups from that litter. So much so that we kept two lovely girls, a yellow and a black.

Phoenix Poncho

Phoenix is due anytime to come into season and we will be breeding her, again expecting to produce yellows and blacks, for Spring of 2024. We also expect to breed for a litter of either all chocolates, or blacks and chocolates, depending on my final decision regarding the stud.

Feel free to check out these wonderful dogs on our male and female pages. Both are exemplary Canadian Champions with full clearances in terms of OFA Hips and Elbows, Heart Echo’s, Eyes, and genetic testing.

If you are interested in discussing our spring litters, please don’t hesitate to reach out.

Here are a few photos from Phoenix and Poncho's last litter.

Phoenix Puppy Phoenix Puppy
Phoenix Puppy Phoenix Puppy
Phoenix Puppy

Covid sure brought many changes for us here and for many of our Breeder Colleagues. Who would have ever dreamed such a thing would happen??? While things are loosening up, we still have to take some prevention measures. Many of us are still a bit nervous about opening wide our homes again, basically to the public. Therefore more of the preliminary communicating is still being done via email and telephone and wherever possible we will hold our visits outside, and for visits inside the home, there may still be a request to wear a mask. We truly miss the old days where our home really WAS basically open to the public and weekends were spent with folks in our family room, talking dogs and visiting our dogs, who are ALWAYS happy to see folks. We appreciate your understanding as we move through this transition period.

We are largely caught up with our waiting list, (which was enormous during Covid) and wait times and upcoming plans should be far easier to manage and predict.

Returning Staghorn families and their family members and friends are wherever possible, prioritized. That is not to say we will not welcome new inquiries. If you are looking for a puppy today or tomorrow, it’s unlikely that I or any of my colleague Breeders will have a puppy available on such short notice. The preferred method to be included to our waiting list is that you begin by emailing us through our website to initiate contact, versus calling. Thanks, and I look forward to hearing from committed families who are looking for a well bred puppy from a long time, reputable Breeder.

All our breeding stock are OFA certified free and clear of hip/elbow dysplasia and eye cleared annually by a qualified canine ophthalmologist, to have normal eyes, and/or to have no evidence of conditions which are suspected to be inherited. We also invest in genetic testing, to assure that we are selectively breeding parents who will not produce PRCD PRA, a genetically recessive, blinding eye disease. We also do many other genetic tests, on the Labrador Panels at the major genetic testing facilities in the USA. This includes testing to confirm that our dogs do NOT carry the dilute (foreign to our breed) gene that came from Weimarainers and results in non accepted, non breed standard, incorrect colours. Many unscrupulous breeders name these colours catchy names such as silver, charcoal, champagne, and even white. Thankfully, most members of the public are smart enough to recognize this sham, don’t be a victim to it. If you have any further questions about colour in Labs, please ask. I will put on my hat as President of the Eastern Ontario Labrador Breeder’s Association, or as a Life member of the Labrador Retriever Club of Canada, when answering those questions.

All of our males and females also have cardiac clearances (ECHO doppler ultrasounds of the heart). Ontario has always been underserviced in terms of access to these specialized cardiac services, and it has been even worse during Covid. I myself have had to organize clinics myself and bring in Board Certified Cardiologists to get my own dogs done.

We encourage puppy buyers who are looking to adopt a new member of their family, (one that will hopefully be healthy - both physically and psychologically) to inspect such health certificates and to ask questions of the Breeder, in order to assure yourself that you are dealing with a well educated Breeder who has a solid working understanding of the official breed standard, who knows the possible health issues in their breed and the risk factors related to them, (each breed can have them.) Also look for a Breeder who you feel can communicate with you in a fashion that will ensure years of comfortable and intelligent communication, especially should any issues arise that require you both to walk hand in hand together, for the benefit of your puppy. While I can provide numerous references from folks who have not experienced any problems with their Staghorn dogs, I can also provide references from people who contacted me regarding a problem and who were very satisfied with how I handled it and who continue to this day, to refer friends and family to me.

Regarding Covid, we normally encourage folks to ensure that you are able to visit the parents and other relatives to the upcoming puppies. Sometimes the sire is not onsite, but sometimes he is. As discussed earlier, one cannot always expect a Breeder to literally open their home up to the public. I myself take an immunosuppressant drug that can compromise my immune system’s ability to respond. Thus, in light of the current status of it and other respiratory illnesses challenging our province, I recommend that you are flexible in your willingness to use other means to satisfy yourself that you are dealing with a reputable Breeder. The first person with a litter of unsold puppies who invites you into their home may not necessarily be your best choice. I mainly use emails and telephone calls as my primary initial means of communication. I have participated in a few Zoom kennel club meetings but I am the first to tell you that this old Breeder is not technologically inclined. I wouldn’t have a clue how to walk through my house doing livestream filming of my dogs/puppies. During the first few years of Covid, there were no in-person visits and all paperwork etc. was done up in advance and our handovers of the puppy to the new homes have been very carefully organized, either outdoors or using an outbuilding, and included masks, hand sanitizer and social distancing. I have always used the information provided by the family, in advance, to choose which puppy goes to which home, based on my careful observations and matching the qualities and traits of the puppy to the activities and lifestyle of the family. That is not new and has been my practice since long before Covid “was a thing”. Again, as we move forward, we will be gradually loosening some of these measures, commensurate with the current provincial trends and our own comfort level.

Again, most of my clients are returning families including the now grown and married children who came here when they were mere toddlers themselves. We had a drone photographer come and take pictures of our property and my husband has tried to capture the essence of our home and our dog’s lives, on our website. Regardless of your method of communication, it’s still possible that you ask questions to get a feel for the Breeder’s investment in their facilities and breeding program, and to determine whether or not you feel the Breeder is dedicated to their Labradors and will be around in several years, or whether they have the facilities to take back any dog that they have brought into this world, should the buyer not be able to keep it. A reputable Breeder takes full responsibility for the LIFETIME of the dogs they breed, and they will NOT burden the Humane Societies or rescue shelters with their dogs.

All Staghorn puppies are sold on a CKC Non Breeding registration and the buyer enters a written agreement that pets must be spayed or neutered at the agreed upon and recommended age. We encourage families who have bought puppies from us to keep in touch, send pictures and notes about their pups. This helps us with future breeding decisions.

And finally, a brief note about deposits. A deposit is a commitment on both parties' part. If I accept a deposit from you, I am placing you on a list of folks to whom I am committed. I remain committed to the group I am working with to provide a puppy within reasonable, given timeframes. I turn aways folks who come after a certain number of deposits are received and often refer them to a colleague Breeder. If for any reason on MY part, I cannot provide you with a puppy reasonably near the time frames discussed, I will happily return your deposit and will assist you to find a suitably well bred Labrador from a colleague. A deposit is not something to leave with several Breeders and then take the first puppy that comes along. Should you do so, expect to forfeit the deposit, the same as with any other purchase

I hope the above information gives you a feel for Staghorn and if you should feel it’s a good match, we’d love to hear from you. Thanks for taking the time to read our information.