A few years ago, I gave up my senior Corporate role, parked my masters degree, and made the famous “tree change”. This was done specifically so that I could spend time with my dogs. You only live once after all.
In 2005, already with several years well established in Portuguese Water Dogs, I was hunting for a property for our dogs, and finally found one, just north of Melbourne. It was a 68 acre paddock which had been used for cattle grazing. There was no power to site. There were no buildings, and just as we were signing contracts, 2 of the 4 boundary fences were washed away by storm waters.
Whilst giving up the Corporate life was exhilarating, it was also extremely difficult in many, many ways, but the long term dream of being able to do my own thing from scratch to establish a world class facility for my Portuguese Water Dogs was hopefully going to be worth the effort.
In the interim, we established a niche boarding kennel & cattery, where the focus is on country living, fresh air, loads of exercise, and extremely good food – all raw food of course.
As of May 2015, the facility itself for my dogs is finally underway. It will consist of 5 acres of paddocks, a lake, extensive fencing, and the facility itself. We will have a medical room for visiting vets, grooming facility, wash bays (wait until you see that!), and a fully stocked kitchen supported by an integrated cool room. You’ll love the lounge room we’ve got planned, as well as the coffee machine, the tv and sound system, and wood fire for those chilly times. In the warmer months, as you can imagine, air conditioning will keep us all cool.
Within the exercise areas, dogs will have an opportunity to hone their water working skills, as well as a fully set up show ring for training.
Even though the Portuguese Water Dogs are our hobby, if you’re going to do something, do it properly, is our motto. This is why we import extremely high quality dogs from overseas ensuring diversity of blood lines. This also enables us to have health testing complete and passed prior to being brought into our lines. We are also working on another exciting development in terms of further diversification – more on that at a later date. By all means, come and visit and talk about our 10 year plan. I figure I’ve got another 30 years I’m going to give to this breed, so I want to make sure that I’m not doing it out of tin shed, nor compromising my ideals with trying to squeeze dogs into a small lounge room, cramping dogs in small crates. We want this to be the best.
We already have representatives from our local and neighbouring councils encouraging people to see what we are doing here, and we want more to visit and learn from us. We also look forward to learning from you.
Although we know it is not always possible, we want every single person who gets a dog from us to visit and to see what we do. We want you to see this beautiful working dog in action participating in the sorts of activities that they would have traditionally done. We want you to see how athletic they are, but also during their “down time” how relaxed they are. They aren’t a match for everyone, and we want you to be thoughtful about making the right decision for you and your family, which we will guide you through, particularly if we get a sense this is not quite the right breed for you at this time, or that we are not the right breeder for you.