A Tribute

My introduction to the breed began in 1989 with my first Newfoundland, Joseph.  Little did I know that his arrival would open up a whole new world to me.

It began with his enrollment in Puppy Kindergarten class.  That led to more classes.  Soon he was old enough to begin some water rescue training.  Many summer weekends of training and traveling and four water tests later, he got his W.D. - Water Dog Title..  From there he went on to achieve his WRD  Water Rescue Dog Title.  Then came his novice obedience title.  Finally - to be a well rounded working Newf, he needed his Draft Title, which he gladly worked to accomplish.

After all this formal training we decided to do some Therapy Dog Work.  He loved it, especially when he got to wear some of his many costumes.  He brought a lot of laughter, joy and comfort to his patients.

He also happily agreed to be my demonstration dog when I began working with a service dog organization - Paws with a Cause.  He pulled a wheelchair, retrieved dropped objects, retrieved portable phones, and opened and closed doors.

Because of Joseph's various health problems which were not being resolved by traditional veterinary care, I began a search for alternatives.  It led me to a holistic vet in my area who educated me about the problems associated with over-vaccination and about feeding a home-made raw diet.  I read everything I could get my hands on, attended seminars, and through many years of learning, researching and experimenting, I've developed a protocol of care which I believe optimizes my dogs' health, soundness and longevity.

Joseph was my guide on this journey of learning how to be a better guardian for all my animals.  He was the catalyst in my investigation of all areas of dog ownership, care and training.  He led me enthusiastically into the world of dogs and I will be forever grateful to him for that!



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