We have been breeding since 2008 and have had 8 litters. We aim to breed golden retrievers that have a lovely temperament and a rich golden colour. We are a member of The Golden Retriever Club, The Golden Retriever Club of Wales, the Kennel Club Assured Breeder Scheme and of Champdogs.
Four dogs we have bred have worked or are currently working as Assistance Dogs with Dogs for Good (formerly Dogs for the Disabled) and three further dogs have qualified as Therapy Dogs. We train our own dogs for the Kennel Club Good Citizen awards. Both Daisy (Florence’s mother) and her mother Elsa have attained the Gold Award.
Getting to know you
Once the mum to be has had a scan confirming she is pregnant, we ask anyone who has not had a puppy from us before to complete a questionnaire. Aside from the fact that we are looking for people who have the time and inclination to provide a loving lifelong home, there are no right and wrong answers, just honest ones. We then invite potential new owners to join us for a walk with mum to be and our other dogs. We hope that you enjoy your time with our dogs and this gives you a good idea of what to expect for the future. Puppies don’t stay puppies for long!
Soon after they are born, we name our puppies and give them nail varnish
identity markings. Each puppy is very special to us and we love getting to know
We weigh the pups regularly to check their weight gain. They have an all milk diet for the first 3 weeks. In the 4th and 5th weeks they start having solid food as well (this is dry kibble that we soak and puree). For the 6th and 7th weeks they have solid food 4 times a day and mum's milk roughly half way between solid meals. In the final week we gradually replace maternal milk with organic rice milk or with goat’s milk so they learn to no longer depend on their mother. They also drink water from around 6 weeks old. The food we use is Akela 80/20 original small paws dog food (tel. 01502 371414)
Lots of love
We raise puppies indoors to start with and then in our garden in a large purpose-built breeding kennel. Our puppies have a lot of handling and are happy and trusting, loving human company. By the time they leave they will be used to eating and playing in the garden and are often quite quick with outdoor toilet training at their new home. All puppies have a microchip and vet check before they leave and usually two doses of worming treatment. They do not have a first vaccination while they are here because they tend still to have too much maternal immunity for it to take effect.
Finding new homes
Soon after the puppies are born, we arrange a Zoom or Skype meeting (or telephone meeting with anyone who cannot manage Zoom or Skype). Following that, we invite you to come and see the puppies. As we only arrange as many visits as we have puppies to place, we are looking for some commitment at this point in the form of a £100 non-refundable visit fee. If unfortunately we do not have enough puppies to be able to offer you one, we would let you know at this point.
We arrange for you to meet the puppies when they are five weeks old. Your visit will coincide with the time that they are due to wake up (they are usually awake for about 30 minutes and you should allow for being here for 60-90 minutes in total). If you are unsure how long your journey will take, you could allow extra journey time and spend some time at the beach if you are early. Everyone who is going to live with the puppy should come and normally nobody else. If, however, you live on your own, you would be welcome to bring a friend or relative. We discuss and sign the contract while you are here.
“Who will be my new family?”
Puppies change quite a lot between five and eight weeks old, so we do not allocate puppies to particular homes at the time of your visit . We do, of course, take note of any preferences expressed. We arrange for someone to come round when they are about 7 weeks old to help do some aptitude tests (this tests things like confidence, retrieving ability and dominance). Often, a friend who shows their dogs or the stud dog owner visits at this time too and will assess the puppies for conformation. This gives us the full picture that we need to make the final decision that is best for everyone.
Once the puppies have had their vet check a few days before they are eight weeks old, they are then ready to leave us. We usually decide a date and time for you to bring them home during your visit at five weeks. The puppies spend a lot of time awake when they are eight weeks old so we can offer a wide choice of times for you to come. It is not essential for everyone in the household to come, but we hope to see the main carers.
Keeping in touch
We are happy to stay in touch after your puppy leaves here and offer telephone support for the first few weeks. If many puppies live in a similar location, we may hold a puppy party when they are about 6 months old. We usually have two reunion walks a year, one on the beach locally and one on the canal between Newbury and Reading.
Is it okay to breed?
Puppies come with two endorsements, 'not progeny eligible for registration' and 'not eligible for export pedigree'. The former does not mean that you cannot breed, rather that you need our agreement to do so. The main thing is that your dog would need to have an X-ray of hips and elbows, an eye test and do one or two DNA tests. Likewise, if you want an export pedigree, the main thing is that we would need evidence of your emigration.
Puppies come with several weeks free insurance, which will start at the later of collection day or 8 weeks old. We recommend that you continue insurance for at least the first year of your puppy's life.
The price of each puppy is £1,750 (total cost £1,850 including the £100 non-refundable visit fee).