"His ears were often the first thing to catch my tears." Elizabeth Barrett Browning
"Never be mean, Don't ever be cruel. He'll always be happy to play the fool. Remember he loves you, with all of his might. So stroke and caress him every night." Unknown
"If you think dogs can't count, try putting three dog treats in your pocket and then giving your Portuguese Water Dog only two of them." Unknown
"You think dogs will not be in heaven? I tell you, they will be there long before any of us." Robert Louis Stevenson
"The greatest love is a mother's, Then comes a dog's..." Polish Proverb
"The one absolutely unselfish friend that man can have in this selfish world, the one that never deserts him, the one that never proves ungrateful or treacherous, is his dog." George Graham Vest
"Beauty without Vanity, Strength without Insolance, Courage without Ferocity, and all the virtues of man without his vices." John Cam Hobhouse
"Dogs have given us their absolute all. We are the center of their universe. We are the focus of their love and faith and trust. They serve us in return for scraps. It is without a doubt the best deal man has ever made." Roger Caras
"A dog is not 'almost human' and I know of no greater insult to the canine race than to describe it as such." John Holmes
"A dog is better than I am, for he has love and does not judge." Saint Xanthais
"Money will buy you a pretty good dog, but it won't buy the wag of is tail." Unknown
"I am a breeder, and there will be more dogs at my funeral than people. I hope!" Joanna Kimball
"If a dog will not come to you after he has looked you in the face, you ought to go home and examine your conscience." Woodrow Wilson
"If you pick up a starving dog and make him prosperous, he will not bite you. This is the principle difference between a dog and a man." Mark Twain
"Dogs' lives are too short. Their only fault, really." Agnes Sligh Turnbull
"The average dog is a nicer person than the average person." Andy Rooney
"Dogs are not our whole life, but they make our lives whole." Roger Caras
"The Portuguese Water Dog is an animal of spirited disposition: self-willed, brave and very resistant to fatigue. He is a dog of exceptional intelligence and a loyal companion, who obeys his master with facility and apparent pleasure." Kathryn Braund
"The greatest fear dogs know is the fear that you will not come back when you go out the door without them." Stanley Coren
"When you tire of puppies ... you tire of life!" Unknown
"Every dog must have his day." Jonathan Swift
"The Portuguese Water Dog is defined by his job" CKC
"Channeling the stamina, intelligence and exuberance of the dynamic Portuguese Water Dog is a highly rewarding, although noteworthy challenge for any dog fancier." Karen Miller-Stebbings
"Dogs laugh, but they laugh with their tails." Max Eastman
"The robustness and high spirit of this fisherman's dog must be understood as natural exuberance." Karen Miller-Stebbings
"His name is not the wild dog anymore, but the first friend, Because he will be our friend for always and always and always." Rudyard Kipling
"He has a hard, penetrating and attentive expression, splendid sight and a fair nose." CKC
"Love me, love my dog." George Chapman
"To err is human, to forgive, canine." Unknown
"The joy, the solace, and aid of man..." George Crabbe
"My goal in life is to be as good of a person my dog already thinks I am." Unknown
"If you are a host to your guest, be a host to his dog also." Russian Proverb
"He displays a proud carriage, and a light happy attitude." CKC
"Here, gentlemen, a dog teaches us a lesson in humanity." Napoleon Bonaparte
"The rich man's guardian and the poor man's friend, The only creature faithful to the end." George Crabbe
"A dog owns nothing, yet is seldom dissatisfied." Irish Proverb
"Every puppy should have a boy." Erma Bombeck
"From his impressive head with piercing gaze through a rugged body to his powerful tail carried up in a ring with its characteristic flowing flag, he presents an indelible impression of strength, spirit and soundness" CKC
"The bond with a true dog is as lasting as the ties of this earth will ever be." Konrad Lorenz
"An animal of spirited disposition, he is self-willed, brave and very resistant to fatigue" CKC
"A watchdog is a dog kept to guard your home, usually by sleeping where a burglar would awaken the household by falling over him!" Unknown
"The dog has the soul of a philosopher." Plato
"He is your friend, your partner, your defender, your dog. You are his life, his love, his leader. He will be yours, faithful and true, to the last beat of his heart. You owe it to him to be worthy of such devotion." Unknown
"He bonds readily and is loyal to his crewmates." Karen Miller-Stebbings
"Once known to a Portuguese Water Dog, expect a raucous welcome, with an offering of a favourite toy, accompanied by a cacophony of extraordinary sounds." Karen Miller-Stebbings
"Make a special point everyday, of teaching your dog how to sit and stay. He will share your laughter and your tears, and always be faithful through the years." Unknown
"They are better than human beings, because they know but do not tell." Emily Dickinson
"If your dog is too fat, you are not getting enough exercise." Unknown
"Exceptionally intelligent and a loyal companion, he does his job with facility and obvious pleasure" CKC
"One reason a dog can be such a comfort when you're feeling blue is that he doesn't try to find out why." Unknown
"A dog can express more with his eyes in minutes than his owner can express with his tongue in hours." Unknown
My first Portuguese Water Dog, Maia, was chosen for one main reason. I felt like she was the best puppy to bring into my children's lives. The breeder I was dealing with at the time had several pups for me to choose from. She encouraged me to choose one of the many gorgeous black puppies. But, I could not overlook Maia's beautiful temperament, despite the fact she was mostly white, and perhaps not as "show‐worthy" as some of her littermates. At this time, my priority was not having a "show dog".
As they say "the rest is history". Maia mothered my children (my youngest was just one year old when Maia came into our lives). She has been such a gentle soul, and the generations of offspring she has produced have all been blessed with inheriting beautiful souls just like her. Of course, I have to give credit to the stud dogs I have chosen, as I always choose the most gentle and calm stud dogs available to me. Temperament and health are my main focus when it comes to breeding.
I am very proud and fortunate to say that every puppy I have ever produced is still in his/her original forever home! This is not just "dumb luck" but a testament to the stability of the temperaments my dogs produce, combined with my process of being selective in the families I choose.
Although "kennel" is the correct term from a breeder perspective, I do not really feel we are a kennel. There are no outdoor housings for dogs here. Our dogs are all beloved pets who live with us in our house. The young dogs are only crated when no one is home, and the mature dogs have free run of our home. They sleep on the sofas, and cuddle with the kids while they watch television. At supper time there is always a gang of dogs laying at the kids' feet, hoping for an accidental dropping of food! Although we have a great big yard, the dogs really just prefer being with their human family.
My passion for every single puppy starts very early in their life... before birth... before conception even... worrying about every little detail, in the hopes that the new litters will be as amazing as the dogs I have produced in the past.
Being a breeder is ninety percent joy! Puppy breath, sweet kisses, laughter, fun, and love. It is truly so wonderful and fulfilling.
At times though, it comes with heartache. A stillborn puppy is absolutely heart‐wrenching, almost enough to make me never want to breed again. Or one time I had a puppy born with a cleft palate, and the vet said to euthanize but I couldn't bring myself to do it, so I tube fed her every 2 hours for days, only to lose her in the end anyway. Or even just watching my youngest son cry when the puppies leave for their forever homes.
I love each pup as if I had given birth to it myself (something my own mother often teases me about). And many times I feel guilt, because the beings I actually DID give birth to often have to hear "I cannot deal with you right now; I need to concentrate on the puppies". During these emotional times, it's hard not to question, "why do I do this?"
But the answer is so simple. The primary reason I breed is because I want other families to have the kind of joy in their lives that my PWDs bring to me, and my family's lives. I really truly believe they are a special breed!! Luckily, I am blessed with family who share the same passion for the dogs as I do! So please don't feel sad when I have tears in my eyes and my kids cry the day you take your new puppy home, as this only shows how much the pup is loved. The kids get attached to the pups... how could they not? I believe that the constant interaction with the kids, and adult dogs in our busy house predestines the puppies to be tolerant and well rounded.
I am very fortunate that for most litters, the adoptive families are already committed to adopting a pup before they are even born, and often before they are even conceived. It's such a wonderful feeling to bring life into the world knowing that the life is SO wanted. Of course, there is also the guilt of knowing I am bringing life into the world while dogs sit in shelters, which is why I make a donation to my local shelter from the proceeds of every litter. As much as I admire families who adopt homeless dogs, if breeders stopped breeding purebred dogs because of the guilt of knowing there are homeless dogs needing homes, many very special breeds including the PWD would be lost.
The commitment I make to my pups and their families spans from birth, then the day they leave my house as a baby, right until they make their journey to the rainbow bridge. I honestly believe that I am ultimately responsible for every life I produce. I welcome and encourage open lines of communication between myself and the people who own a dog from LunaNova. I love getting updates, questions, phone calls, texts and photos from people. Over the years, some of these breeder/buyer relationships have actually morphed into real friendships!
I am proud to say that now, all my breed‐able girls have Canadian Championships! This is important in the sense that it means they are deemed to be a good representation/specimen of the breed standard. I will admit though, that dog shows are not where my passion lies. I am much more proud of the obedience and water titles me and my girls have earned, as this really showcases the drive and intelligence these dogs possess. Plus it's just so much fun, and so rewarding! Every day I wake up and know that my dogs are a gift. They make the bad days good, and the good days better! There are not enough words to describe the love they give...
Lastly, I can only take a portion of the credit for the amazing LunaNova dogs out in the world!! The majority of the credit has to be given to the amazing people who make the commitment to time and training, exercising, socializing, providing structure and conditioning... and mostly ... loving their dogs as much as I love mine!
~ Carolynne Issa