My family had numerous pets when I was growing up and I loved all of our animals…..but our dogs were always the most special. Our Collie "Rusty" was a year older than I and died when I was in high school so we essentially grew up together and he was a wonderful companion. After college when I had secured my first job and house, I knew I wanted a dog of my own and had always loved the look and temperament of a Golden Retriever.
Like so many first time pet owners, I purchased Mandy from a breeder I found through the local newspaper. I didn't know about the health issues in Goldens and unfortunately Mandy was severely dysplastic, had chronic ear infections and hot spots, and also became hypothyroid. In spite of the health issue, Mandy had the most wonderful temperament and was my introduction to this very special breed - Golden Retrievers. Mandy and I competed in obedience and she achieved her CD and CDX with high scores and placements. Eventually the hip dysplasia took its toll and after beginning training towards her UD title, I knew I could never allow her to do the jumping required of this level. So Mandy retired to the couch... and now older and wiser, I sought my next Golden from a reputable breeder.
Over the past 30 years, I have had many wonderful Golden Retrievers and have competed in conformation, obedience, rally, and hunt testing. During that time, I married my terrific husband, have had 2 children (both are now grown and on their own!), and have made wonderful friendships through my hobby showing and owning Golden Retrievers.