AKC National Championship

Each year, in December, I attend a week long dog extravaganza in Orlando, FL. This year there were approximately 7,000 entries competing in Dock Diving, Agility, Obedience and Conformation at what has become the largest dog show in the United States. While I attend the event primarily to work, photographing all the lovely dogs, this year we entered a couple of dogs into the show.

Tuesday, Salty showed in conformation where she earned Best of Winners for a point.

Saturday, Gabby came down from Mississippi and earned Best of Winners for a point and an Award of Excellence. I haven’t seen Gabby since she had a litter of 17 (yes, 17) a year and a half ago. I was very pleased at how great she looked and how well she did. I was also thrilled to spend a little time with Gabby’s owner, Pam, who I should visit more often.

Friday night I was joined by Dyane Baldwin of Pond Hollow Chesapeakes (Salty’s breeder) and Laurea Griggs of Laurel Wood Chesapeakes (who owns Fen) for a great night of Italian food and dog talk. We were having such good discussions that we literally were the last patrons in the building.

I was glad, also, that Dyane got to see and spend a little time with Salty…giving her the opportunity to see how Salty was maturing and an added bonus was that she got to see a grand-pup of hers, Gabby. Gabby’s sire was the product of a breeding I did with one of Dyane’s dogs eight+ years ago.

Saturday and Sunday several other Chessie friends helped setup and staff a meet the breed booth, which was a great success.

It was an exhausting week with long hours and a lot of running around. Every year when I ask myself why I attend, I reflect on the week and remember why. I participate for the love of the breed, spending time with wonderful friends, and to celebrate dogs.

Hopefully next year I’ll say the same. 🙂


New Grand Champion (GCH)

A shoutout and big congratulations to Patton and his owner Todd on obtaining their Grand Championship (GCH) August 21st. Patton is a hunting companion who attends shows on a limited basis. He has done very well and we look forward to sharing future updates on his hunting adventures.



I’ve been away for awhile so posts have been a bit slow. This summer I had an amazing opportunity to visit my friend, Thora, in Germany. I was thrilled to spend some time with my friend, but this was a particularly exciting experience for me as it was my first time traveling overseas and while doing so I got to see and spend time with Chesapeakes from Germany, Denmark, Sweden, Finland and Norway.

While in Germany, I also had the pleasure of seeing Purl. Purl is a girl from our Jockamo x Gabby litter about 15 months ago, she is owned by Thora.

Purl has had a number of achievements lately. In June, Purl obtained her Junior Champion VDH & DRC in 4 straight shows and then went on to earn a Best Of Breed win. In July, I had the pleasure seeing her pass her temperament test performed by the Deutscher (German) Retriever Club as well as earn her ACC WD (Working Dog Title). Since I’ve been home, Thora and Purl entered a working test for Curly-Coated and Chesapeake Bay Retrievers, where they took a second place win in the beginners class.

I am very excited and proud of this young team and I look forward to their future updates.



I would like to introduce, Happ – CoolWater’s Eight Men Out. Happ is from our co-bred Jockamo and Gabby litter (GCH Rippling Waters Jockamo IPA SH x SHR CoolWater’s Fly Me To the Moon) and lives with Kevin & Pam in Mississippi along with his mother, Gabby. Last weekend, Happ and Gabby were entered in the Franklin, TN shows. Happ earned his first points and the judges were very complimentary of him. He’ll be a hunting companion and we look forward to sharing his progress/updates as he matures.



Farewell My Friend

Several people have sent me e-mails and have left voice mails recently. I have even received a couple of rude follow-ups. My apologies for not getting back to you, I will try and do so this weekend.

I’ve said little about it, but this past Thursday, I laid to rest a Chesapeake that meant more to me than I can articulate. As my heart tries to mend from her loss, tomorrow, I will grieve again as I am reminded of our last moments together, when I go and pick up her ashes. I just haven’t had it in me to follow-up to emails, discuss puppies, plans, events etc… I’m sorry. No. I take that back. I’m not sorry.

Some of you will understand, some will not. Some will say, she lived a long life. True, she did. Some will say, she could have died from other things/or earlier in life. True, she could have. I am thankful, so very thankful for the 13 1/2 years I had with Jessie. And yet, 13 1/2 years were not nearly long enough.

Every day we wish our lives away, wanting the minutes, the days, the weeks, the months to be over. We complain about how time goes by so slow and, yet, I will argue that time goes by so fast. So very fast. Before we realize it time has slipped by. A year. 5 years.  13 1/2 years.  I was reminded that we are each given a limited amount of time to be on this earth and every day we get to choose how we are going to spend that time. Grab a leash. Take a walk – even in the rain or cold. Throw a ball. Give a treat. Snuggle on the couch. Take photos, there can never be too many photos. When our time is up, there are no tomorrows. No do-overs. No second chances. Spend what time you have wisely, embrace it – don’t wish it away.

They say letting our dogs go, when it’s time, is the kindest thing we can do for our companions. This may be true, but I say it’s the most unkind thing to our hearts.

Farewell, my sweet friend.

Eukanuba Dog Show

We will be at the Eukanuba Dog show this week and through next weekend at the Orange County Convention Center. Saturday and Sunday, December 12 and 13, there will be a Meet the Breeds booth setup. There will be many volunteers and their Chesapeakes attending. If you’ve been interested in the breed, and wanted to learn more, this is a great opportunity to meet several dogs and talk with multiple owners.

For those interested in the Brady x Fen breeding, Fen is coming down from Georgia and will be at the show as well. It’s a great opportunity to meet her to help determine if this is a breeding you’d want a puppy from.


Hunting: Jad

We received these lovely photos of 5 mos. old Jad, from our Jockamo x Gabby litter, and his buddy Cooper, a 10 1/2 yr old GWP, hunting recently. Jad has some big paws to fill as Cooper is retiring. We hope to share lots of photos of Jad hunting in the future.

Agility Debut

Fen made her Agility debut this past weekend. She did quite well. She picked up a First and Third place and qualifying ribbons in Jumpers and Weaves, a First place and qualifying ribbon in Novice Standard and a Second place and qualifying ribbon in Novice Fast.

She had a lot of fun and we look forward to seeing how she does in the future. Congratulations to Laurea & Fen for their great job!

The Dog World, A Small World

I find it amazing how small the dog world is and how Facebook brings us all together.

A few weeks ago I had the pleasure of having dinner with a Chessie family from Ireland here on holiday and this weekend I finally met a friend from Germany, who I’ve known virtually through Facebook for several years. Not only is she visiting the US for the first time but she’s also taking home a Jockamo x Gabby puppy with her.

Meet Purl who will soon be learning nein and gut among several more German words in just a few short weeks. 

I’ve always said my dogs have made life interesting and have given me many new and wonderful friends over the years.