10 December 2018
The fun will soon begin, again. ;>)
We whelped three litters of puppies in September 2018 and all have grown up very nicely. The last of our puppies left us on 30 November 2018. Each of these twelve puppies was reserved by application & deposit, before the puppies were even born. Puppies will next be available in late June/early summer 2019, should you wish to submit an application.
Billie’s breeding to Oskar in July gave us three gorgeous puppies on 8 September 2018: one female and two males. Yogi x Koko gave us five puppies on 16 September and Yogi x Annabel gave us four on 22 September.
We bred Oskar x Billie, a repeat breeding and one designed to produce the widest variety of coat colors in our bloodlines. Of the 60 TTs in the four generations behind these two Kensington TTs, 21 are gold or red brindle. We achieved our goal of breeding a potential new red stud dog to take Oskar’s place, as he turned ten in September 2018 and probably has only one or two more years left in his breeding career. We will next work toward breeding a sable female out of Ziva. And Claire Coppola has bred three sable females for me, who I will be evaluating in person during my next visit to Colorado on 15-18 December. Sable Tibetan Terriers are becoming more popular and it is a recessive genetic combination – so, they are much less frequently available than Black & White coats. And since I do ask for applications with deposits in advance? I already have three forever families who are patiently waiting for their future brindle puppies. The pressure is on!
We bred Koko to Yogi James – and of the 60 animals in the four generations behind these two Tibetans? There are 19 gold or red brindles. We actually got two parti genetic tris out of this breeding. Ella and Joker – and, boy! They are smashing.
Lastly, we bred Annabel to Yogi. Annabel is Billie’s littermate (sister) and we got two parti genetic tris out of this breeding, too. Structure in the puppies is gorgeous and I think I will repeat this breeding, hoping to keep a female as smashing as Questa.
I have been considering breeding Beckham (Shadeacrre Fast Love at Kensington) x Ziva (GRCH Kensington’s L.A. Noir, Aussi), as I am very interested in a Shalimar/Polygor outcross to Alilah and Waterley bloodlines. Ziva is a Brady girl, my mentor Nina Wagner’s favorite stud dog. And Nina thought that my Ziva was my best TT bred to date, as of 2015. Ziva is very ‘typey’ and has gorgeous carriage & movement, sweet expression and is very nicely balanced front and rear. And she has the wonderful temperament for which Shalimar and Kensington Tibetan Terriers are known. Ziva is a playful delight to have in our home pack of five girls and LOVES to roll over on her back for a belly rub from anyone. ;>) I had Beckham and Yogi collected, evaluated and their semen frozen for future breedings – so, now? I have more options for the future and that is terrific for my ongoing breeding strategy.
For our September 2018 litters, I used three different whelping rooms. Two were set up, so that I could allow Billie a choice and the larger room was where she wanted to be. The third room (which is also my kitchen office) was used by Koko, as she is a first time mum and I spend most of my time in the kitchen, when I’m not working with the dogs. Koko’s psychological comfort with her private space was of high importance to me. It is of high importance to me for EVERY one of my girls – but the first timers? I always try to be extra sensitive to their mindsets. My kitchen office has always been the primary whelping room and this is THE BEST set-up to date, because I can work on my laptop & be close to the kitchen, while keeping both eyes on the needs of the mum and the movements & sounds of the young puppies. I also use a baby monitor to keep an ear on things and we have a fabulous inflatable queen mattress that I use to stay very close to the action (when I’m not sleeping on the living room couch).
Our outdoor runs are configured, so that each mummy dog has a private run on 3/4″ pea stone — and the older puppies are separately X-penned inside the large pens, so that they are introduced to the big world, a small piece at a time.
The puppies from our February 2018 litter turned ten months old on December 8th. You can see them with their mum in the photo above. They are now living in Pennsylvania, Connecticut and one little guy is out on the circuit with his handler Rebecca Bradley. He is Questa. Questa has finished his AKC CH title and has Majors and points toward his GRCH – even though that wasn’t part of my original strategy.
At about six months, I switch the puppies from Royal Canin puppy kibble to Royal Canin small breed adult kibble. We feed Royal Canin’s 42D kibble to all girls in season who will be bred, beginning on the first day of heat and for their first two trimesters. Then, we switch to a ‘lactating’ Royal Canin kibble for the final trimester and throughout lactation. I have used a wide variety of kibbles and like Royal Canin the best, for a number of reasons. If you’d like to know why, please email me. ;>)
I think about my future breedings every day – that is, when we’re not caring for a new litter. I think about the attributes I’ve come to take for granted – like beautiful chests, coats, great shoulders, mouths and bites. I think about the most important things besides good genetics, great temperament and an athletic body? Great head, profuse coat, lovely gait, beautiful tail set, nice neck. I think about the Coefficient of Inbreeding A LOT. I use worldpedigrees.com and create Trial Breedings, so as to study the past and the potential COIs in various breedings. I study the pedigrees of TTs who have caught my eye or my intellectual attention. There is so much to learn! It goes on and on, and I love that. In fact, I have a list of animals whose pedigrees and heritage I want to study and also, the reverse breedings of Luneville Prince Khan, Kiara’s Fascinating Rhythm and Prin-Su’s Rebel with a Cause, to see who these animals have produced and to which Kensington Tibetans they are related.
We’ve lived with Tibetan Terriers, since 1992. My husband and I brought our first two TT puppy littermates into our lives in 1992. I actually found an ad from Nina Wagner of Shalimar Kennel in the Classified section of the Sunday Boston Globe, back then. During the next ten years, I became impassioned with the breed and decided that I wanted to develop a breeding program of my own. In 2006, I acquired my foundation pair of TTs from Shalimar and Mark & Pam Desrosiers finished James and Izzie in 2007. Nina Wagner continued as my primary mentor, until October 2016, when she passed away on the 23rd. Her wisdom, guidance and humor were inspirational. We talked regularly and laughed often. Now? I am developing friendships with Claire Coppola of RinChen, Margie Wikerd of Bluvali and Markus Gisslen of Shadeacre in Sweden. Maureen Dwyer of Yonpo is another TT breeder who has become a friend. Maureen has used both my Oskar and my Yogi with her two girls. In fact, she recently whelped her third litter out of a Kensington stud dog: Kensington’s Sweet Baby James (Yogi) for the second time with her CH Yonpo Starry Starry Night. Star whelped six puppies on March 13, 2018, with Maureen’s help and Maureen kept Madigan, her pick female.
James and Izzie were my foundation pair of Tibetan Terriers and had their first Kensington litter on 19 March 2009. That first litter had eight black & white puppies – four boy pups and four little girl pups. That is the ONLY time that Mother Nature has given me an ‘even Steven’ ratio of girl and boy pups. Of the eight, seven of the pups went to forever homes from New Jersey to Maine and we kept our pick boy puppy, Oliver Twist. Oliver hit the show circuit in January 2010 and became an AKC Champion in eight days, at nine months of age. There were other potential show dogs in the 2009 litter but their forever families are all raising their Kensington TTs as happy pets. Beau is one of those puppies, an extraordinary athlete with spirit and personality. Here he is, showing off one of his tricks, jumping through the hula hoop. He was also very good at digging up perennials, as a puppy. We’ve also lost our first Kensington bred TT out of that first litter. It’s not all a bed of roses and no one has a crystal ball without cracks.
Our latest trickster is Aza, our second ‘hula girl’. She learned the trick in under fifteen minutes. All it took was a treat on the other side of the hoop. And her humans told me that she’d mastered the piano, too! They’ve taught her a trick, where she plays the lower keys, while her forever mom plays the higher keys. It is a lot of fun, when you get a food-driven TT, as they perform for reward and are easier to train than those who don’t care about food. Food drive is something I watch for, as the puppies develop.
In April 2010, Izzie whelped our second litter (Oskar x Izzie) and we had five red brindle puppies – four girl pups and one little boy. We kept Coppi, our pick bitch puppy, and she joined James, Izzie and Oliver in the pack. The other four puppies from our 2010 litter went to live with their forever families from Ohio to Massachusetts. We have lost one of them, too. Lyme disease is something to be taken very seriously, as it can be damaging to the kidneys and immune system.
Look at the two puppies on the gingham tablecloth to the right. You can really see the difference in the width of their chests. These are puppies out of our second litter, born 19 April 2010. The puppy on the right has noticeably broader shoulders and a bigger chest – different head, too. That is Coppi at eight weeks, now retired and living on the beach in Marblehead. Coppi is mother of Annabel, Billie Jean, Whittaker and Ziva. When I’m trying to determine my ‘pick’, I look for strong bone, good proportions, pretty movement, brains and personality. I like to breed smart dogs and I’ve been told on several occasions that they are smarter than their humans. For me, it is fascinating to structurally evaluate the puppies in pairs. It helps make things jump out at you. Easier to compare than to study in isolation.
Izzie had her third and final litter in 2011. I bred her to James a second time and she produced some really wonderful black & white puppies. Out of this litter came Rocket, our first Puppy Group 1 winner! Rocket lives with Izzie, Henry and their forever family up here in Vermont. And Emmett James came out of Izzie’s last litter, too, and he also lives in Vermont. He has a Kensington little sister in Sophie, out of Whit x Gigi, August 2015.
It’s great having kids around who love to play with the puppies and dogs, as it helps to socialize the young pups, in preparation for life in their forever homes with children. Henry, Lily and Daisy helped me in the early days. Lily graduated from Dana Hall in June 2018 and has since shifted her interests toward equestrian competition. Fortunately, we now have ten year old Levi and five year old Claire who help to socialize and handle the puppies. In fact, they’ve visited us several times, with our most recent litters. Levi is wonderfully sensitive with animals. And Claire likes the variety of coat colors and patterns.
2012 was the last year we had only one annual Kensington litter. Beginning in 2013, we started breeding two litters a year. In order to give each puppy in every litter and each adult in the pack the love, care and attention they deserve, we need to keep our pack size small. When you visit, you will probably meet three or four adults – and there’s always a good chance that we’ll have some younger Kensington Tibetans in residence, as we are also happy to board any of the animals we’ve bred. It gives me a chance to further evaluate the animals and I love seeing them again.
In 2015, we bred two of our girls in early June and the puppies arrived during the first week of August. We were in Vermont for the births and headed south to Princeton, Massachusetts, once the puppies began weaning off of their mothers. The puppies from both of these litters were beautiful with great heads and strong chests. Yogi James is out of one of these litters. He is a terrific sire for several reasons and has sired six Kensington litters to date, including CH Kensington’s Questa o Quella?.
Our 2016 litters left for their forever homes, except for the lovely Miss Lily Rose. I held her back for study, as she struck me as a beautiful animal with a sweet submissive temperament with humans but a spitfire with her peers. She has since been released and moved in with a wonderful human mom in Maryland and is splitting her time between the mainland and the beach. All of the other Gigi and Billie puppies live in CT, MA, PA and VT. Our 2017 puppies were available in August and October 2017.
If you’re interested in bringing a Tibetan Terrier into your life, I urge you to visit as many breeders as you can. Remember, that breeder will be an invaluable resource and guide to you, as the years go by. Trust me, you’ll have lots of questions! And I think you should want to see firsthand how your puppy has been raised. And you might also like to speak with other families who’ve brought a puppy from that breeder into their homes.
Tibetan Terriers are smart and sensitive. They traditionally live long lives. We sell our puppies with spay/neuter contracts, pay for the first 8/9 week vet exam & first round of puppy shots. We also require the right of first refusal, should you ever need to re-home your Kensington Tibetan Terrier. It is that important to us to know that all of the TTs we breed will have an opportunity for a wonderful forever life with the best forever families we can find and we are HAPPY to be the back up plan, if one is needed. Should your circumstances change, know that we remain happy to help with the longterm care and home life of your Kensington Tibetan Terrier and that we will love each of them madly and forever.
If you are seriously interested in a Kensington Tibetan Terrier and have experience in the breed? Know that you are welcome to reach out, come and visit us, should you like to be considered as a future Kensington forever family.