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Briarmoor Australian Cattle Dogs
Specializing in AKC Registered Austrailian Cattle Dogs since 1989!



History of Briarmoor
you get
a Cattle Dog

The Other Critters
Ending Credits

The History of Briarmoor

Briarmoor Australian Cattle Dogs is really the natural progression of a lifetime spent with dogs and other animals. I can still remember, with clarity, attending the International Kennel Club show in Chicago, IL (where we lived during my childhood), and seeing a standard poodle in full show regalia! Just a preschooler, I was awed and asked the owner if I could pet her dog. The dog must have been done showing since she said I could! Touching his black hair was like touching cotton candy. I was hooked! But it would be almost 20 years before I seriously began showing dogs myself. The first pet my family had, that I can recall, was a pedigreed Dalmation called Domino. His sire was a champion from a successful kennel and his heritage illustrious. But he was never shown as he was purchased simply as a pet and watchdog for my family. After Domino came several poodles, then 2 Saint Bernards. By this point I was just beginning my teenage years.

After high school graduation, I immediately left for Air Force basic training and ended up in England for my second base. I was there 3 years and this was where I was finally able to immerse myself in dog shows and learning more about dogdom. I road trains and rented cars to get to shows, walked into the nearby town to dog training classes each week, to be close to dogs, since during my tour of duty, I could not have a dog. I vowed once I was out of the service, I would never be without my dogs again! And, so far, that has been more than true.

After researching several breeds and visiting a number of kennels in Great Britain, I settled on the Rottweiler as a breed I wished to own, show, and train, and perhaps breed at some point. I found a successful hobby breeder who had been in the breed many years and I put a deposit down for a pup. As my enlistment time was to be up before the pup was old enough to travel, I managed to get myself an extra month and was able to travel with my new puppy, a male I named Trevor. No kennels would take a pup that young once I got stateside to outprocess the Air Force and he proved too attached to me to leave in a dorm room in a crate (howled like mad!), so at the sergeant's suggestion, my Trevor pup was allowed to attend outprocessing! He stole the show as he lay under my desk chewing my camo hat as I filled out mountains of paperwork.

Trevor was a spectacular dog, not just in conformation, but as one of those once-in-a-lifetime dogs that has such presence that everyone who meets him remembers him always. People I haven't seen in years run into me at shows and ask about him still. He was all heart. He weight pulled, tracked, carted, brought in the Christmas tree in harness each winter, learned to retrieve duck decoys from the pond. He also made a good showing for himself in conformation, obedience, and schutzhund. Always animated and gregarious, his clownish self was utterly devoted to me. I never worried walking at night or being alone at shows. I never doubted for a moment that he would come between me and any threat.

I saw many breeds while attending shows with Trev, and one of these was the Australian Cattle Dog, a breed that was scarce in England, although at that time (late 1980's), it wasn't very well-known in the U.S. either. I liked the medium build and easy-to-care-for coat. The cattle dog seemed a no-frills dog I could enjoy many dog sports with. One would also fit in my sports car with a Rottweiler, while another big dog wouldn't! I began researching in earnest and talking to breeders. I found a particular line I liked and inquired after a dog. After being told the breeder had no pups, I asked when the next litter would be. Not deterred that it would be months away, I sat back to wait, knowing the clean movement and type I had seen on the dogs from this breeder and not wanting to look elsewhere. Several months later, following one of my periodic phone calls, the breeder contacted me to ask if I was interested in an older puppy she had kept for herself, but now found herself moving and needing to place the dog in a serious and loving show home. I was excited, but cautious. I wanted just the right dog. She sent photos.

Upon opening the envelope and seeing the pictures, I knew I had just found my first cattle dog! Shortly thereafter, during winter break from college, I drove 8 hours to North Carolina and picked up Huggy, later Champion Hobkirk Hugs and Kisses, TT, CGC from Jamie Hansen of Hobkirk kennels. Huggy was to become my foundation bitch and would go on to produce 5 champions (out of just 7 pups in 2 litters), 2 multi group placers, one advanced agility title holder, and an obedience title holder (so far). Huggy herself finished in short order, then retired from the show ring to the life of demo dog for my obedience classes. She came out in 1996 to bring home a placement in the 7-10 year bitch class at the national specialty and also pick up a Veteran group III at an area show in 1997. In 1999, she yet again proved she could still cut the mustard at age 10 by going 2nd (to her son, Boomer), in the Best Gaited Property class with a huge entry at the National Specialty in Frederick, MD. She also won her 10 and Over Veteran Sweepstakes class.

In the decade or so we have been involved with ACDs, we have tried to learn as much as possible about the breed and improve our line with each breeding. To date, Briarmoor has had only 7 litters. Of those, only 4 have been out, to any degree, in the showring so far, and we have 10 champions to our credit, with several more nearing their titles. A number of people have started out in the breed with our dogs and been successful in their own right.

Probably, our brightest star so far has been Huggy's son, Champion Briarmoor's Bugle Boy , or Boomer as most people know him. Boomer was from our 2nd litter, the "B" Litter, which produced 4 champions. He finished quickly in 1994, then in 1997 landed a spot in the nation's Top Ten Australian Cattle Dogs, with me showing him in just 35 shows. He became a group winner and multiple group placer and loved every minute of it! Not to be outdone in the show ring, he proved himself a top notch sire. Boomer won the Stud Dog Class at the 1999 National Specialty thanks to 2 champion littermate sons, one of which was Grand Sweepstakes winner at the 1999 National and also at a regional specialty. Although bred sparingly, Boomer has a number of champion kids, many of whom won Bests of Breed over Specials on their way to their championships and who are producing champion kids now themselves. Like begets like. Of the 6 Boomer children who attended the 1999 National Specialty, all 6 won or placed in their classes. Consistent quality is wonderful! Boomer's get exhibit his outgoing personality, exceptional movement (he won Best Gaited in the Property classes at the 1999 National Specialty out of a huge entry), lovely head with dark, tight eyes, hard topline, and nice bone and color.

Boomer was not the only shining star in his litter. His brother, Bart, achieved his agility excellent title in addition to also becoming a champion in short order and a multiple group placer too. A 3rd brother, Chase, also finished quickly, then went on to obtain his companion dog (CD) title with class placements. The only girl, Brat, also finished fast, but outdid herself in the whelping box, producing 5 champions to date, and 2 group placers in 3 litters.

In the next century, we would like to continue to breed dogs that excel in what the Australian Cattle Dog should be. We strive for versatile dogs that can do any task asked of them. Our dogs do it all. They show (and win!) in the conformation, obedience, and agility rings, but they also compete in other arenas. We have dogs on fly ball teams, in police departments as drug dogs, and on farms, including one who cuts chicken "roundup" time in half by slowly and quietly moving the birds to the waiting trucks, rather than the farm hands running amok trying to snatch them up! This dog also works goats and cattle. Some of our dogs are just loving companions and pets to their devoted owners.

By breeding one or fewer litters per year, we can carefully screen potential buyers and educate them about the breed's pitfalls as well as virtues. All our dogs go with written contracts stating the obligations of the new owner as well as the breeder. We will take back any dog of our breeding at any time of its life if the owner is unable to keep it and cannot find a suitable home for it. Our dogs are more than a hobby, they are a lifestyle! We are responsible for their well being for life. We try to place our dogs in homes that share our commitment to the breed. Pets are sold on limited registration and spay/neuter clauses. Breeding stock and show stock are one and the same; we sell dogs to people whose interest is bettering the breed, not just financial gain.

Each of our litters is born and raised in our home for the first 8 weeks, then they venture into the puppy pen for daytime play, and back in at night. By raising our pups indoors, they are already familiar with the usual household sounds of washing machines, phones ringing, televisions and radios playing, and a variety of other noises. They also get the benefit of constant attention from the people and other animals inside, and learn how to play nicely (well most of the time!) with the cats and grown dogs. We hold them from the moment they are born and they learn to love and trust humans. Most buyers tell us when they bring their puppy home, it is like he or she has always been there, such is their easy transition from our house to theirs. A puppy's first few weeks of life is akin to that of a child's first few years, so we try to give them every benefit that will help them grow up to be well-adjusted adults that fulfill their potential.

We are always available to answer questions regarding the breed and enjoy talking cattle dogs with other enthusiasts.

Thank you for your patience in taking the time to read about our history and our beginnings in the Australian Cattle Dog. We hope you enjoy our little "home on the web" and will let us know if you have any comments.


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