Sunday, 2 October 2011

Kennel Club Names

After some considerable thought Gary and I decided to name this litter after Blackadder characters so we are delighted to announce that we have been granted the following names - Klancraig Lord Flashheart (Flash aka Badger), K. Lord Blackadder (Ted), K. Kaptain Darling (Mr T), K. Lord Percy Percy (Percy aka Mr Big), K. Lady Kordelia and K. Mrs Miggins.

A Week of Seminars

Well what a week - it kicked off last weekend with the seminar which the German Wirehaired Pointer Club hosted on the subject of Dilated Cardiomyopathy the speaker at which was Joanna Dukes-McEwan who is a specialist in this field. Joanna was a very interesting speaker and all credit to the Club for hosting such a talk on a condition which is beginning to appear within our breed.
On Sunday, I attended the UKRCB's 19th Annual Symposium the subject of which was Learning For Life: Considering a New Approach to Educating Puppies - which covered first experiences of puppies in the nest and during their first few weeks of life in their new homes.
Then on Frdiay evening I had the pleasure of attending a seminar entitled 'Calming the Conflict' which was hosted by the Dogs Trust Training & Behaviour Advisors which covered A Conflict of Species (why observations of captive wolves do not give us an insight into domesticated dogs), A Conflict of Emotions (theories of Attachment and how they affect our relationships with our dogs), A Conflict of Beliefs and A Conflict Of Learning Theory.
Lots of information to take in some of which I think should be common sense but certainly food for thought as to how we raise our puppies and interact with the dogs that we live with.

Wednesday, 28 September 2011

Tuesday, 27 September 2011

It's a Dogs Life...

Mum and puppies enjoying a lazy warm afternoon...

Tuesday, 20 September 2011

Five weeks and enjoying a raw diet

Our puppies are five weeks old tomorrow and thoroughly enjoying their raw diet of raw meaty minces, sardines in tomato sauce, chicken wings and chicken necks... and what they can't finish mum is happily disposing of!
Below are pictures of Mr T, Ted and Flash tucking into their chicken wings this evening.

Mr T



Sunday, 18 September 2011

Midland Game Fair September 2011

Well I have had a lovely weekend manning the Discover Dogs stand at the Midland Game Fair at Weston Park in Shropshire with Tracy Cartwright - accompanied by Bronte and Tracy's young bitch Candy. We were there on behalf of the German Wirehaired Pointer Club to introduce people to this wonderful breed and answer any questions posed by members of the public.
On Saturday afternoon Tracy's mum Jenny joined us with their youngster Oscar and together we all took part in the Parade of Gundogs whereby onlookers had the opportunity to view all the breeds and listen to a brief history of their origins and today, Gary joined us at luchtime with Fergus and Winnie to help man the stand.
I think I can speak for Tracy too when I say what an enjoyable time we all had, speaking to people and meeting other wires - and suprisingly there were a quite a few around.
Bronte and Candy were flagging towards the end, I think there are only so many greetings they could make and cuddles and kisses they could share but they were a credit to our breed, as were the youngsters Oscar and Winnie.

Thursday, 8 September 2011

Tilly and Bruno Pups - three weeks

Today we decided to attempt to 'stack up' our puppies for their weekly photo shoot and as you can imagine had lots of fun in the process - at this age they are slippery little critters and stacking them is like trying to handle a bar of wet soap!

Ticked Girl

Dark Bitch

Mr Big

Flash - was Badger

Solid Headed boy - Ted

'Mr T'

If you are viewing these pictures and not accustomed to looking at pictures of gwp puppies look beyond the markings since they alter so much as they mature. To see a perfect example of this just look at our website and on the individual profiles compare puppy pictures with pictures taken of each dog as they matured.
When picking a puppy, your choice should be made on construction and personality not markings. A decent breeder that has spent time with their puppies should be able to guide you on the choice of puppy given your experience of the breed and aspirations for your youngster, this is why so many breeders insist on choosing the puppy for each individual home.
As for these little kids, their teeth are starting to come through now and they are all starting to show their own little personalities, albeit that they are still such babies.

Thursday, 1 September 2011

Tilly and Bruno babies at two weeks of age.

From top to bottom - dark bitch, ticked bitch, Mr T, black and white boy (solid head), Badger (two pictures) and Mr Big.
Our babies are just over two weeks of age and getting these pictures was something of a challenge since they are such active little critters, so sorry because the photographs really don't do them justice, especially with the flash light on the camera!
They all have their eyes open now and are up and about on their legs. I walked into the kitchen this morning to find their bed looking like Beirut, heaven knows what they were up to last night but bless them, they were all sitting bolt upright and looking up at me as much as to say 'it wasn't me'...
I moved them one after another onto the big dog bed so that I could tidy the whelping box and although Tilly was less than impressed with them scattering around the kitchen, they weren't phased at all and were happy to explore.
Tilly is still being a devoted mum and has loads of milk, so we won't be weening them yet awhile.

Friday, 26 August 2011

UKRCB Symposium 2011

On Sunday 25th September the UKRCB are holding a Symposium which this year will be discussing 'the current state of research into puppy education, the new approach which is proposed and research currently underway to assess the new approach to puppy education'. Having attended a talk hosted by the UKRCB earlier this year and given the topic being covered at this talk, I am really excited at the prospect of attending.
The following link will take you to the relevant page on the UKRCB website for more information

Thursday, 25 August 2011

Girls at Eight Days

Top two pictures - ticked liver and white bitch, bottom two pictures - dark liver and white bitch. Both beautiful little girls.

Boys at Eight Days

From top to bottom - Mr T (black and white boy), Mr Big (liver and white boy), Badger (black and white boy) and solid headed black and white boy - don't worry he will get a nickname too when we think of an appropriate one ...

Tilly and Bruno Pups - one week of age

Our babies are a week old today and boy how they have grown. Whilst they are very contented puppies, eyes still closed, they can certainly make their way around the whelping box in search of mom when needs-be.
Shown above, from top to bottom liver and white bitch, black and white boy, black and white boy, liver and white boy, liver and white bitch and black and white boy.
Gary and I are absolutely delighted with these puppies and enjoying every minute of watching them grow.

Saturday, 20 August 2011

Tilly and Bruno Puppies Arrive

Gary and I had been on our vigil, watching Tilly from about Friday since she had puppies two days early when she had her last litter two years ago. Tilly however, had other ideas and kept hold of those little babies until the early hours of Wednesday morning when we became the proud grandparents of six beautiful puppies - seen in the picture opposite from left to right a liver and white boy, three black and white boys and two liver and white girls.
As before Tilly is proving to be a devoted mum feeding, cleaning and counting puppies each time we lift one out of the whelping box.
Of course nothing is getting done at home since the whelping box is in our big kitchen - the hub of our household - and as we all drift in and out we are all drawn to Tilly and her pups and just spend endless minutes watching them eat and sleep.

Saturday, 6 August 2011

Dilated Cardiomyopathy (DCM) in the GWP

Dilated Cardiomyopathy (DCM)

The following is copied from the German Wireahired Pointer Club website:

"GWPC Committee Health Statement
There has been much discussion on the subject of Dilated Cardiomyopathy (DCM) and the GWP on various web forums and social networking sites. This statement gives information on the current position of the GWP Club in relation to this issue.

What is DCM?

DCM is a common form of heart disease in dogs. It is the enlargement (dilation) of the heart chambers and a thinning of the heart muscle leading to a marked reduction in the ability of the heart to contract and therefore pump blood (Heart Failure). The disease is an acquired condition, that is to say the dog is not born with it, but it develops over time. Although typically physical symptoms show by middle age, it is not uncommon for cases to be diagnosed at much younger ages. The disease leads to premature death or long-term disability. Onset in middle age can be mistaken for natural ageing; however tiredness and exercise intolerance are potentially early signs of DCM. Although viral infections, immune disease and excessive alcohol consumption can all result in DCM in humans, there is no clear evidence that this happens in dogs. There is a genetic basis to the disease proven in many large and giant breeds (e.g. Doberman, Boxer, Great Dane to name but few). In these breeds the condition is thought to be caused by a dominant gene, meaning that it is passed down one line unlike a recessive gene, which requires carriers on both sides of a mating to create affected dogs (e.g. von Willebrands Disease).

What is the GWP Club Response?

In March 2011, it was brought to the attention of the GWP Committee that there have been cases of confirmed and suspected DCM involving a small number of GWPs, including younger dogs. The committee immediately requested that the GWPC Health Sub-Committee investigate this matter. This investigation is ongoing and it is likely that there will be firm guidance on the subject in the near future. There is no evidence as yet of this being a widespread condition in the GWP. The GWP Health Sub-Committee will advise in due course on what, if any, action should be taken by the Club and its members.

In the meantime, we have arranged a seminar on this important subject open to all club members and we especially hope that as many breeders as possible will attend. This will be on Saturday 24th September at Middlewich Community Centre, starting at 12.30 with a buffet lunch followed by the seminar and a questions and answers session. The Speaker will be Joanna Dukes McEwan BVMS, MVM, PhD, DVC, Dip.ECVIM-CA(Cardiology), MRCVS of the University of Liverpool Small Animal Hospital; and a leading authority on DCM. The session will cost £15 a head which includes food and drinks – available from Sharon Pinkerton – – 01469 532991/07860 292020

What does the GWP Club Committee Recommend?

Whilst the GWP Club Health Sub-Committee continue with gathering evidence and professional advice, the club recommends that anyone concerned about this condition should consult their veterinary surgeon, especially if they are planning a litter or to use their dog at stud. It is possible to test for this condition using the Echo-Doppler technique. Whilst the test is not definitive, it can give an early indication of abnormality, which would require a further test after 12 to 18 months to check for any further adverse changes in heart function. In most cases, you would need to be referred to a specialist veterinary cardiologist for these tests to be carried out. Several breeders have already begun this process of testing.

It would also be helpful for any GWP Owner having had experience of heart problems in their own dogs to share that information on a confidential basis with the GWP Health Sub-Committee, and with other breeders/stud dog owners who may plan to breed from the progeny of such dogs.

The key message from the GWP Committee at this time is for owners and breeders not to panic, nor to be complacent. Whilst there have been few confirmed cases, there have been enough in a breed of this size to prompt concern. We do encourage testing for two reasons. Firstly, the more test results that are known, the more we can assess the extent of the problem in the GWP and secondly, if detected in younger dogs, early treatment has been shown in other breeds to slow the progression into heart failure and symptomatic DCM. By taking positive action now, and working with health conscious and responsible breeders, we aim to eliminate any possibility of this condition becoming a significant problem in the future."

As responsible breeders that are passionate about our breed, we embrace any tests which are available for conditions which affect the GWP. As such, we will be testing any dogs or bitches that we own and intend to breed from for signs of this condition.

Sunday, 31 July 2011

Weeding the Garden....

Tilly is seven weeks pregnant today (to her first mating) and we decided that it might be nice if she came and spent a quiet afternoon with us weeding the front garden. Of course she was not amused since she expected to be going off for a run and since there are hare and partridge around, not to mention the sheep on the other side of the hedge - we had to be vigilent just in case she decided to sneek off and do herself some damage. As it was, other than Tilly stalking a hornet, it was Fergus who took himself off for a jolly when we took our eyes off him for two minutes to welcome visitors....

Thursday, 28 July 2011

Wales July 2011

Today Gary, myself and Megan returned from a short break away on the Welsh Coast.
We went there on Friday with Tilly and Winnie - we always take a couple of the dogs, taking them all would not be feasible - but Tilly and Winnie were the lucky ones for the second time running this year, since Tilly is expecting puppies and we felt that she would be stressed out by being left behind albeit that she would be at home being looked after by our grown up children and having the company of our other dogs.
We have had a wonderful time with glorious weather. Lazy mornings, and sunny days punctuated with strolls through the dunes and along the beach. Gary is pictured above with Winnie, the picture was taken one evening on the path above our caravan site, just as the sun was setting and Gary and I were there enjoying a drink as the sun set. Both Tilly and Winnie have loved paddling in the sea and running up and down the beach but Tilly - who is now almost seven weeks pregnant and just over two weeks to go until her puppies arrive - has paced herself, although not in her eating habits! Over the last week she has definitely grown and although she was still happy to play, for the most part was also happy to just mooch around and sleep on our bed. Needless to say, whilst I have thoroughly enjoyed our break it will be good to get back into a full sized double bed, since me, Gary and a very pregnant Tilly in a static caravan sized bed was a tight squeeze !!!