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Breeding Philospohy

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The most basic goal of my breeding program has always been to produce well rounded hounds with correct breed type, stable temperament, intelligence, and merry dispositions - with health being my utmost priority. My hounds are DNA tested for MLS (Musladin-Leuke Syndrome) and screened for other applicable genetic health issues. While I do enjoy showing my hounds, I do not breed specifically for the show ring, rather for the 'whole dog'. That is, one set of traits is not selected in favor of another, all are given equal consideration. I believe the hunting, show and companion Beagle should be one in the same, with health and correct breed temperament given the highest priority - and plan my litters accordingly.

"Brutus" - field bred pup
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Normally, I breed a well planned litter once a year. We are not a puppy farm and do not breed to supply any demand in the pet market. All my pups are whelped and raised in the home, are handled extensively from birth and stimulated on a daily basis. Due to it's proven benefits of strengthening the immune system/improving trainability, I implement the Early Neurological Stimulation program beginning at three days of age. As the litter matures, I accustom them to experiences such as new sights, sounds, textures. I play music for them, expose them to the yard and different rooms of the house, other friendly dogs, cats and people, once vaccinated. My pups have daily free access to an indoor exercise area as I feel conditioning and developing of muscle mass at a young age is invaluable. Around 6-7 weeks of age, litters are Temperament Tested using the Campbell Puppy Behavior test. I'll evaluate their reactions to new objects, situations, and other general stressors. This helps me get a good assessment of individual personality types, and is also useful in determining how each pup might fit into certain living situations.

Our pups are not sold on a first come, first serve basis, as I do prefer to help families pick from a few of the pups best suited to their individual lifestyle vs. puppy temperaments. This is done only to ensure our pups are a pleasant challenge for their new owners, not an insurmountable one when rambunctious, dominant, mouthy pups that would have fit better in an adult home begin to playfully nip young children, etc. Litter visits are welcomed to pre-approved families only. For the health of our pups, I hold off on visits until the babies have had their first vaccination around 6 weeks.

I am of the belief that commercial diets alone do not provide optimal nutrition for growth and development, therefore, I choose to prepare food myself. Pups here are weaned onto a highly digestible blend of cooked pureed meat, raw oats, a fortified milk mixture consisting of evaporated milk, yogurt, and a raw egg yolk. Dry food is added over time, until they are eating a 50-50 ratio of kibble to home-cooked, so that they have been given the benefits of fresh, real foods, but are also accustomed to 'dog food'. I never force wean my pups, meaning they are not separated from the bitch to prevent nursing at a certain cutoff age. They are allowed access to their dam as long as she feels comfortable nursing them.

Because I stand by the health of my hounds, I offer a three year written health guarantee covering any serious congenital or genetic illness. I'm proud of the distinct lack of major illnesses in my bloodline and will only continue to work in keeping it that way.

The pups I breed are viewed as my lifelong responsibility. My home is always open to them. If, for any reason at all, during any time throughout their lives - ten days or ten years after purchase - you must re-home your Beagle, I will take them back, no questions asked.

Autumn Oak Midsummer Nite Dream - field bred pup
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