After a surprise divorce the four kids and I are now settled on 1.88 acres west of Innisfail, Alberta. There is still a lot to do but the dogs are happy and have settled well into their new home. Over the years I have had alot of experience with animals. I raised horses for about 13 years and while on the farm I raised Boer goats, Dexter cattle and miniature Donkeys. I even had a token Llama
I am a nurse and work in Long Term Care in Innisfail, about a 30 minute drive for me. Prior to this I managed 2 special units in a nursing home in Calgary, one a closed unit for Alzheimer clients and one for impaired mobility. I mention this as I started a dog program on the dementia unit which I was told was the first in Canada. Setting it up involved government intervention and a lot of time writing policies and procedures and a job description. Finally Timber (Tecknique Faust At Shilowill) came to work. The sound temperament and happy, loving nature of the PBGV was very evident. He "worked" 8 to 10 hours a day and all could see his presence was very beneficial. Timber took part in recreation programs and visited all the residents daily. Several times a day he had full run of the unit but also had nap times. His calm, friendly behavior helped calm many agitated residents. It always amazed the staff how residents would talk to the dog but not them.
My involvement with dogs started many years ago and they have played a very important part in my life. They have brought me both joy and sorrow and I have met many wonderful people. Miniature poodles were my first breed and after 8 years I increased in size to Irish Wolfhounds. I had thought I had found the perfect breed and for 14 years was very involved with them. However in 1985 I saw my first PBGV, Ch. Oaktrees Hercule at Tecknique, owned by Harry and Gerry Jeffries. He had come out west to attend some shows and after talking to his handler I knew that eventually I would own one. Finally,in In 1992, Tecknique Alstertals Avanti came to live with me. Soon 2 more followed, one being Timber. In 1994 I made the decision to be more involved with the breed and soon Technique Shandrydan (Daniel) and Technique Diligence (Melisse) arrived. Daniel finished his championship and in 1995 was #2 PBGV in Canada. Daniel was the sire of Multi BIS Am/Can.Ch. Amonvhar Alfred, winner of 4 Best in Shows. Melisse became an Am/Can Champion. I have also owned Scottish Deerhounds.
I have a small kennel with 6 large runs 60'x 10'. The dogs have separate fenced areas inside and sleep on raised beds. Access in and out is through special dog doors and each door has a porch protecting it. The kennel is heated by a furnace with vents over each bed and it is kept at 50 degrees. Each bed has a heat lamp in case the dogs get wet or the furnace stops. When I moved, there was a section already built for grooming dogs. The previous owner had decided to start a business grooming but never did it. So I have a wonderful area for grooming etc. The dogs have their own freezer, fridge, microwave and radio. A person could live with them quite nicely. Because of the coyote problem I had invisible fencing installed around the acreage. I had the invisible fencing for quite a few years on the farm and highly recommend it. My dogs are safe and never get out. All the dogs take turns 2-3 at a time, for a big run and play daily, weather permitting. All dogs take turns being in the house, and at least 3 live in the house all the time. Bob since retiring, has become a confirmed house dog, as well as Norka, and Saku.
My pups are raised in the house. I did have a litter this spring and had to use a spare bedroom for them. But my next project is to build a porch/whelping room on the front of the place. This way the pups are with me all the time and can gets lots of socializing.
Like every breeder I feel my chosen breed is the best. I am dedicated to doing all I can to raise a happy, healthy puppy, one that will be a lifelong companion., Health issues are important to me. I am a member of the Canadian Kennel Club and the Petit Basset Griffon Vendeen Club Of America. I was a director with the Petit Basset Griffon Vendeen Fanciers Of Canada but due to lack of members it isn't active. Distances between breeders in Canada and the United States is great but we try to maintain contact about many issues. Helen Ingher of Charlen Kennels in Florida has been my mentor in the breed. In 2005 I lost 2 special friends Harry Jeffries, Tecknique Reg'd, was always available for advice & litter evaluations. Jennie Wright, Petit Time, became a wonderful friend and advisor.
I have met many wonderful people in the dog world and hope to continue to be involved as long as I can with the four kids. My door is always open to visitors.