Champion #12!

Today our sweet Laszlo competed and joined the ranks as Heartstrings-Bred Conformation Champion #12!  He certainly did it in style, finishing on 4 Major Wins.

At the tender age of 13 months this is truly a brilliant future in the show ring.  Practically unprecedented for such a young male to sweep Major Wins like this, how exciting!

Enormous well done to Laszlo and the Cushing family!  To see the hope, vision, research, dedication and hard work come together like this is a very, very proud and rewarding day for a Breeder.





Service With a Smile

Greetings Friends!  This week we would like to recognize and congratulate Vauquios and his owner.  Vauquios, at the tender age of 13 months, is a full-blown physical therapy assistant and also assists with activities of daily living as a Service Dog for his owner.  Here, helping with shopping and overcoming obstacles and barriers that many of us take for granted.

We have had several Dogues, deemed with the “right stuff,” earn Therapy Dog and Service Dog status.  This is typically an area of work commanded by Golden Retrievers and German Shepards; rarely a Dogue de Bordeaux serving and working in this capacity.

There have only been a handful of Dogues achieve this important role.  We consider this groundbreaking for the breed and are very proud of Vauquois and his owner!


Trifecta Breeding Approach

Today our CGC and TDI Certified boy Kaiser made a difference.  He played gently and appropriately with a very sick Dane puppy.  The puppy has wobblers disease, an extremely painful condition.  This little Dane has never known a playmate.  His lifetime has consisted of sickness, loneliness as his family could never find a gentle, appropriate playmate for him – in fear he would be injured.

He met Kaiser and had his first play date ever.  Kaiser was so sweet, gentle, appropriate with this little guy and they had a ball.

We are very proud of Kaiser as he is a true testament to our vision.  When making breeding decisions we weigh temperament on an even scale with correct conformation and heath.  None of these 3 criteria can be compromised in a breeding program and working towards the total package.  They are not mutually exclusive.

Congratulations to Kaiser and his family – you all make us very, very proud.




Popeye in Palm Springs, CA Show

This past weekend Popeye used for Select Dog with beautiful competition in Palm Springs!  That was a big win, big congratulations to his owners and breeders!!  From over 2,000 miles away we have had Popeye on our radar since he was a baby and this is just great to see.  We are passing along a few photos taken this weekend in Palm Springs; we know our families will just love these.

Our Popeye x Shirley babies are doing famously.  Our buttons burst to pass along that 3 of the puppies from the litter have already tested out of beginning obedience and will advance to intermediate classes at 14 weeks old.  Intermediate is typically closed to puppies under 6 months of age – we are so proud of our little smarties!!!

Basic obedience begins here but we are very grateful to their families for keeping this up and their hard/fun work with them.  Like children, smart, busy little minds need stimulation and we know they love their “work time,”  practice and assignments.  Excellent socialization for the pups as well – and what family doesn’t enjoy a dog with good manners?

Again, enormous congratulations to Popeye and his Team.  We are most appreciative of the opportunity to use him and put together such a great litter.  We sit tight now and wait for news on the Popeye x Jazzy match.Popeyepalmsprings1 popeyepalmsprings2 Popeyepalmsprings3

Laszlo Earns His 2nd Major!

Today at the Tallmadge, OH show Laszlo earned his 2nd Major Win towards his AKC Championship!  In order to become Champion, a Dogue must earn 15 points and 2 Majors so this is very exciting.  The number of points are awarded by how many Dogues they beat and getting enough entries for the 2 required Major Wins can be challenging.

Laszlo is “co-parented” with the Cushing family who lives 7 hours away.  In their area they have had great success but the entries have only provided 1 Major for Laszlo.  So he loaded up and came out to “Camp Grandmas” in Ohio where we typically have larger entries.  We hoped for entries, then we hoped for the opportunity for a Major, then of course we hoped to win.  This is just wonderful.

Great job Laszlo and Cushing family!  He is such a delight and presses on towards becoming a Champion.

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Breeding Announcement

Today we bred our Champion, Grand Champion, Silver Grand Champion Jazzy.  #1 female in the US 2014; #2 Dogue de Bordeaux in overall Breed Ranking.  #1 female in the US 2015; #2 Dogue de Bordeaux overall in Breed Ranking.  2x Westminster INVITE (only the Top 5 dogs of any breed are INVITED), Select Bitch at Westminster and CHIC certified health testing.

There are young ears here so we will keep it in code and say that we ONLY do artificial insemination, never “natural breeding.”  We find this the safest, most humane and dignified way to breed.  A quick, absolutely painless procedure for our girls that takes less than 3 minutes by a veterinary reproductive specialist while we are right beside her, holding her and giving her tummy rubs and coos.

Other than our in-house males we have never used a male in our time zone, or even necessarily in the US.  This has required enormous cooperation from the male’s family.  We start monitoring a girl early but we never know when the time will come.  We call the owner’s of the male:  “Tomorrow is the day…..we need your boy collected and his semen shipped by Fed Ex deadline.”  Then it’s time to RUN; call Grandma to come over and get the kids off the bus or one of the best stories – talking to the owner of a male while they were, literally, running across the parking lot to have him collected and we could hear both of them panting.

Then we hope for a great collection from the male.  Then we hope the shipper is on point and gets the precious cargo in our vet’s hands on time.  Many nights walking the floors watching for tracking updates.

Science was perfect, now we wait and ultrasound in approximately 30 days to see if Mother Nature was on our side.  In the meantime – we know that many have been waiting for puppies from us and we appreciate this very much.  There will never be an easy, convenient Heartstrings litter bred simply to supply demand.  We know it’s hard to wait but thank you for your trust, confidence and patience.  We promise it will be worth it.

3rd Generation of Beautiful Hearts!

Today Heartstrings Luther cleared echo at Ohio State by the Head Teaching Professor, Service Head of Cardiology!

Understand that we take our Dogues for health testing to the very best Specialists.  The most sensitive, most sophisticated equipment in the US, arguably the world.  The most carefully-calibrated machinery.  We don’t go in saying “Please clear this Dogue.”   But rather challenging the Specialist to “Find a problem.”

DCM, AS, SAS (heart problems) a leading cause of death in the breed.  They are genetic.  This can be eliminated with careful, responsible breeding and eliminating anything from a breeding program with these issues.   We are proof – it can be done and the reason we tell callers looking for puppies to insist on at least parents having clear echos.

Those results should be logged on the Orthopedic Foundation for Animals website, where you can also do important vertical and horizontal pedigree research.  To us, it is absolutely inexcusable (and irresponsible) to breed an un-echo’d Dogue.

Luther passes with flying colors – becomes our 11th and most importantly – our 3rd generation Dogue to clear.  It’s a long-term goal years in the making and we are over the moon!