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I grew up with a house full of golden retrievers and a couple of Siamese cats, which is definitely where my love of animals originated. My mother used to breed Golden Retrievers, so I learnt a lot from her. After my husband and I had had our third child, it seemed the most perfect time for us to get a puppy, enabling our children to grow up learning how to care for and love our new canine family member. My husband grew up with black and yellow Labradors, so we compromised with a chocolate Labrador, Charlie (Calypso of Lucifers Delight). We bought her in Belgium from champion breeders, as we were living in Luxembourg at the time. Charlie grew up to be the most polite, biddable, loving and intelligent dog and having had many requests from friends and family to breed from her, I took the plunge, and in doing so, brought new genes into the gene pool in the UK. The first litter was born in May 2006, when we had moved back to Kent from Luxembourg and from this litter we kept Vincent, who is now a successful Stud Dog. Then, in June 2008, Charlie had another litter, which is when we kept Mouse. Now that Charlie is in her retirement, Mouse has taken over as our breeding bitch and Vincent has girlfriends who visit now and then. In February 2012, we also brought back in to the family, ‘Homersham’s Plum Duff’ – Duffy. She was from Mouse’s litter in 2010 and has been returned to us due to the owner’s sudden onset of ill health. A very unfortunate and desperately sad situation for them, but we are delighted to have her back in the fold. She had a lovely litter of black and chocolate puppies in September 2012, sired by ‘Thurbajen’s Total Eclipse’ – such a handsome black Labrador who has done extremely well in the show ring, even at his young age! His mother, Smee, is the closest that I have ever met to our Charlie, like ‘two peas in a pod’ with their personality and looks, so it is a wonderful mix of super bloodlines from both sides.
All our breeding stock is health tested within the guidelines set out by the BVA, Kennel Club and Kent, Sussex and Sussex Labrador Retriever Club (active member). All puppies are reared in our home, amongst our children and our other pets. This is so important to the rearing of confident, happy and healthy puppies.
It is vital for me to find out all about you and your family, your daily routine and commitments, also your experience and thoughts toward training, when you enquire about re homing one of our puppies, as I have to make sure that you can provide all the necessities in raising and caring for a Labrador for the rest of its life. So I hope you won’t mind that I will be nosey, but I am sure that you can understand my reasoning behind it. It’s also very rewarding, on both sides, to have new owners very involved right from conception, through to birth and the first eight weeks of puppy’s life.
The Labrador is a wonderful breed – patient, kind, playful, loveable, loyal and easy to train. They are very good with children, making them good family dogs, even with small children. But, it is essential that they are trained, exercised (fully grown, they will need one to two hours a day), challenged mentally, loved and cared for a great deal and they don’t stay small for long! When asking yourself, 'is the Labrador retriever, the right breed for us?', you have to bare in mind all of the many commitments required. The main ones are physical, emotional and financial and whether you are able to give your time - lots and lots of it! It is of paramount importance that you truly and honestly believe that these things are easily achievable by you and your family, for the future well being of your Labrador. The more that you put in the more you get out - the rewards can be enormous!