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Wednesday, January 6, 2010

A Puppy Story - Part 2

When Maggie was about a year old, I began my search for another Berner. I didn't want a puppy right away as Maggie was still a handful and so I wanted to wait until she was at least 2 before we got a new puppy. I had been looking around at several breeders when I went to the local dog show to see if there were any Berners entered. There were only a couple entered that weekend, but it was there that I met a wonderful lady, Maureen, who was campaigning her BISS boy, Onslow. He was so gorgeous and sweet, I knew that I wanted a boy dog next. Maureen was not planning any litters at the time, but she gave me the names of a couple breeders that she recommended. I knew that both these breeders had long waiting lists for their puppies, but that was fine with me as I wanted to wait at least that long before adding a new puppy. I called one of the breeders (Wanda) and she invited us to come up and visit and meet the dogs. She happened to have 2 litters of 3 week old puppies at the time. I didn't even ask about the puppies, assuming that they were all spoken for (and remember, I wanted to wait), but Colin saw those cute puppies and asked if there were any males not spoken for. Wanda said that she thought she would have a couple males available, as she had 3 litters that year and she normally only has one litter or maybe two. One mom was who 5 years old, never had a litter and so Wanda knew it was either breed her now, or spay her.
I asked Wanda lots of questions ( hopefully the right ones this time) and she asked us lots of questions. She was so helpful and sent us home with her contract to read and an application to fill out if we decided that we would like a puppy from her.
I filled out the application (before Colin changed his mind about getting another puppy right away)- it was about 5 pages long with lots of detailed questions about us, our home, what specific traits we were looking for in a puppy, and so on. Then we waited. We didn't know if she would approve us or if one of the puppies would match what we wanted. A few weeks later we finally got the word - she had a puppy for us!

We drove up to pick up our puppy on a Saturday. We had no idea which puppy we would be coming home with. Wanda had the structural evaluations done and 2 temperament tests done on the puppies and from there she matched up the puppies to the people.
When we got to Wanda's house, she was busy filling out paperwork with another couple. She sent us down to the puppy room to wait for her. The room was filled with all these cute, fluffy, sleeping puppies. As soon as the puppies realized that someone was there, they all started to wake up and come to visit us. There was one large puppy (Mr.Black), who ran right over to us and was very friendly. He then proceeded to bite the nearest puppy on the ear until he made them cry, then he would move on to another puppy and bite it on the ear. He was feisty!
While this was going on, there was a puppy stretched out (Mr.Green), sleeping in the middle of the room. All the other puppies were climbing over him to get to us and he would just open his eyes, grumble at the puppy tripping over him and then he would go back to sleep. Colin said "I want that one - he is lazy!" The puppy eventually opened his eyes and noticed we were there and came to visit.
By this time, Wanda was ready to let us know which puppy would be going home with us (she knew I wanted an obedience/performance dog, but wanted a dog that was a lot more mellow than Maggie). She looked through all her notes and had it narrowed down to 3 puppies. One of the puppies was Mr. Black (the biting puppy), one was Mr.Sparkles (a very cute boy) and one was Mr.Green (the lazy puppy). She eliminated Mr.Black quickly - thinking he was too dominant. She thought Mr. Sparkles was too barky. She thought Mr. Green was just right - he was middle of the road energy wise and thought he would make a good performance dog.
So, I got Bosley before I thought I was ready, but he turned out to be the perfect dog for us and I can't imagine not having him.
I am in regular contact with Wanda and she is always so supportive and appreciative of everything I do with Bosley.


  1. bosley is a GREAT match for you- good breeders really know what to look for in matching puppies/homes.

    it is a great feeling to have a breeder pay attention, and have a part in the dogs life isn't it.


  2. the Bos!!!! I remember that first time you brought him to class, those feet!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

    great breeders are great, aren't they?

  3. He's adorable! It's good to know that you found a great breeder who breeds AND homes dogs responsibly! Good for her, and for you and Bosley too.

  4. That was a real nice story, Kim! Both of our beautiful girls are from Wanda and Eric. Back in 1998 we went through the same routine you did! After 11 years, we also keep in touch. Wanda and Eric are very special people for us,and for so many others, and we love them dearly. I wish that all breeders were as responsible and caring for their breed as these two wonderful people are!