What age were you and how did you become involved in the world of Dogs?:
According to my mother, I would try to jump out of my pram to pet a dog. However I didn’t start raising them till I was in my late 20s living in California. I rescued a wonderful Great Dane, who got me hooked . So many of my friends loved her that I had to have a litter to keep everybody happy. The rest is history
What Breeds of Dogs have you had over the years?*
I also raised Jack Russell’s, once again, mostly for acquaintances who loved my dogs. Over the years I’ve rescued many dogs from Newfoundland’s, Labrador, Golden Retriever to a Scotty.
What would you consider to be your main breed and the one people associate you with?
Since coming to Ireland ( I’m originally from Scotland) but spent many years in the United States. I fell in love again with the Scottish Deerhound, I remember we had some on the Estates that my dad worked on.
What attracted you to this breed?
Their elegance ,grace, dignity, and just plain adorableness have won me over. They’re certainly the easiest breed I’ve ever dealt with, from temperament, grooming, and training. They’re absolutely wonderful. Though they are not for everyone.
What advice would you offer to anybody that is interested in becoming an owner of the breed?
If you’re looking for a guard dog no they barely even bark. And are way too laid-back to be aggressive They love everyone, including dogs and cats (unless they run away fast ,they may take chase)
Does the Breed have any specific requirements by way of exercise & grooming?
They develop slowly, though they grow fast. So this takes a lot of patience to not over exercise a young dog, so if you’re looking for a dog to go jogging with you for 10 km it’ll be a good 18 months before the dog could do that. However they do require a little bit of room to be able to just run flat out sometimes, however it rarely last any length of time. (A good half hour walk twice a day, with the ability to be off leash to run for 10 minutes would suffice). However their ability to sleep on the couch is quite extraordinary. Only volunteering to leave it if there’s physical human contact involved. They love to be petted, their devotion is unequaled to anything I’ve ever seen. Personally I think they would be excellent therapy dogs. Their patience is phenomenal. Sometimes, they can be a little stubborn, and as puppies they can be quite willful so they need to be supervised. Never ever to be left alone in your home without proper boundary restraints as a pup.(that goes for all dogs however due to their size the destruction can be quite considerable.).
Does the breed have any specific health tests that should be done before a Dog or Bitch is used at stud or bred from?
They are also one of the healthiest of the purebred dogs, due to the fact that they were so carefully bred by the aristocrats for hundreds of years not being allowed to be owned by the common people. Of course they can suffer from the maladies of large dogs, bloat, limited lifespan average 10 to 13 years.
How would you sum up the characteristics of this breed and what type of household would they best be suited to?
They were bred for chasing large animals, however it has been so long since these dogs have actually had to perform these duties, yes the instinct is still there, and they may peel out to chase a rabbit, but most of the time, they’re quite content to-just go with the flow .
In my mind if you can handle the energy of a Labrador or Retriever, then I suggest you get 2 Scottish Deerhounds, just saying !!!!!