Inspired by my Grandfather, one of the first professional dog handlers at the famed Westminster Kennel Club Shows in Madison Square Garden, NY, I began showing dogs in Obedience and Conformation as a Junior Handler in 1968. I have been involved with dogs on a professional and personal level ever since. From 1968 through 1995, I showed dogs throughout the United States.In the early 80’s I earned the Top Obedience Handler award from the Penobscot Valley Kennel Club of Maine. At the time, my personal breed was Golden Retrievers.
In the early 80’s, I opened a boarding and training kennel in Dixmont, Maine (Golden Glow Farm Kennel) where I also offered full service grooming.I began offering group obedience classes, group handling classes and private personal gun dog training. At the time I was a member of NAVHDA (North American Versatile Hunting Dog Association) where I began my career as a breeder and handler of Vizslas, which I still own today.
Continuing to teach classes in Dixmont, Pittsfield, Waterville and Winslow, by the mid 80’s I had added the duties of Animal Control Officer for Dixmont. My three year commitment there ultimately inspired me to turn half of my commercial kennel over into a shelter where I rehabilitated aggressive dogs for adoption.
By the late 80’s I added Marshaling at Field Trials and judging Obedience and Conformation at Match Shows in ME, NH and MA to my resume. In 1990 I left Maine to teach classes in California in association with Dr. Fred Miller and Brighton Greens Veterinary Hospital.At the time, we were the first facility to offer medical and behavioral consultation under “one roof”. In CA I taught over 13 classes/week from Basic – Advanced Obedience, Show Handling and Agility. I averaged over 700 students per year for nearly ten consecutive years. Due to the popularity of my classes, I had to retire from the show ring due to time constraints. In my career in the ring I had earned 7 – CD and 3 – CDX titles in the US as well as 3 Canadian CD titles. I had earned 3 Breed Championships on my own dogs finishing one with group placements from the Bred By Exhibitor class in both the AKC and the IKC (International Kennel Club). Additionally I put multiple wins on multiple client dogs in both Conformation and Obedience.
After returning to Maine in 2000, I again started classes, this time in association with Moosehead Trail Veterinary Hospital.I maintained a very low key schedule, training about 200 students per year. During 2005 -2006 I stopped training to once again follow the national dog show circuit working some of the most prestigious shows in our country including Westminster, the Eukanuba Invitational, West Palm Beach, the Philidelphia shows, Portland Oregon and Christmas in Cleveland to mention a few.
In 2009 I acquired my first show potential puppy in many years and reentered the sport of Conformation and Obedience competitions with yet another Vizsla, call name "Luke" (see the link to "Luke's page" here, or from the menu at the top of this page). I have had such a wonderful time showing Luke in both Canada (where he was ranked the number one Vizsla in Canada for 2011 after completing his Canadian Championship by winning Best of Breed at several influential shows and a Best in Show on Cape Breton Island) and the US (where he finished both his Championship and Grand Championship with several major wins). During this time Luke also completed his US and CAN CD (Companion Dog) obedience titles and his US and CAN Rally Novice titles.
In September of 2014 I showed Luke in the UKC (United Kennel Club) shows in Scarborough, Maine. Luke finished his UKC Championship in four back to back shows taking a Sporting Group 1st, two Sporting Group 2nd and one Sporting Group 3rd.
I also have had the pleasure of showing Mira, my pick of the litter bitch from the April 2014 Luke and Zigara breeding. Mira debuted in the AKC’s 4 – 6 month puppy class in Marlboro, MA with a Sporting Group 1st, followed by a Sporting Group 2nd that same weekend. Her next show was Springfield, MA where she took a Sporting Group 2nd, and her last two shows as a 4 – 6 month puppy were Long Island, NY where she took a Sporting Group 4th and a Sporting Group 1st ending her 4 – 6 month competition with a Best in Show Puppy at Suffolk County.
Mira finished her AKC Grand Championship and her UKC Championship under 2 years of age. In 2016 she was ranked the #1 Owner Handled Vizsla Bitch in the AKC, a ranking that resulted in an invitation to attend the AKC Nationals in December of that year. Mira was awarded Best of Opposite in both the Owner Handled Invitational and the AKC Nationals. She was also awarded the "Best Bred By Exhibitor" at the Nationals. She is currently 8 minor points from her AKC Grand Champion Bronze.
In 2017, Mira earned a Sporting Group 1st at the only AKC show she attended and went on to achieve the #1 Vizsla in the UKC ranking for that year. (See the Mira and Zigara link at the top of the page).
In 2013 I made the decision to seriously pursue my AKC judging license. I have completed many components toward this goal including attending the AKC's Institute for Aspiring Judges in April of this year. Additionally I judged the Sweepstakes entries for Vizslas, German Shorthaired Pointers and English Setters at the Keene, NH shows in August 2013. I am excited as I move closer to this career goal!