Rubus and his kids had an opportunity to visit the New Vet school at the University of Surrey
Welcome to our website, and we hope you take the time to enjoy our dogs and find out more about them and us
Our dogs are first and foremost our pets. All of our Cardigan Corigs (Cardis) have excellent temperaments and are of appropriate size, construction, soundness colour and are in good health. Our dogs are intelligent, stable in mind and body and have loads of character.
Our first Cardigan Corgi came into our life in March 2008, we’d been looking for a small robust dog who would fit into a family with kids, German Shepherds and a cat. The impetus into getting a smaller dog was a plea from our youngest son who wanted a dog he could walk.
Cardigans are categorised as a vulnerable breed, due to the limited numbers being born in the UK each year (less than 110). Cardigans have never been bred in high numbers and the numbers born each year has remained consistent for a long time.
Cardigans are often confused with the Pembroke Corgis, and people comment on the fact that they have a tail and that the colour is wrong. Cardigans have always had a tail, and the tail often is seen with a white tip (from inch of white to only a few hairs and occasionally none). Colour wise they come in many different colours including "recognised colours" of Red and White, Brindle and White, Red Point Tri colour, Brindle Point Tri Colour, Blue Merle and Sable, they can also be found in diluted colours, slate, liver and pink (otherwise known as ee or clear red).
Cardigans are a very versatile breed and I think “Cardis Can” sum them up very well.
We are proud to have dogs who have qualified as Pets as Therapy (PAT) dogs and who also spend time working with children and adults to help them overcome their fear of dogs as well as introducing people to dog behaviour.
We welcome visitors to come and meet us and the dogs as well as the other two and four legged residents that share our home.
The dogs lead pretty spoilt lives and we are lucky enough to have a large garden that the dogs enjoy playing in, digging up or just mooching about in. We are extremely lucky with where we live as we can quickly access many walks including canal towpaths, army land, and now have access to a private woodland where our dogs can safely run free. All of this helps keep our dogs healthy in mind and body.
We are working at our Son's senior school with the dogs running a "Reading with Dogs" program. Current listening dogs are Rubus and Fennel. They currently have year 4 year 8 students and we hope to expand the programme after seeing such positive results.
Our dogs all live as part of the family, sleep in the house at night and go on holiday with us. Our dogs are expected to have manners and behave appropriately to the situation. They love to socialise both in and out of the home.
Jo has had GSD's in her life since she was eight, although unfortunately her first only made it to 5 months old as he had such severe hip deformities that it would not have been kind to allow him to continue onwards. After that she had the fantastic Rafeki and Radar who both came having had other homes, she has also been fortunate to have been actively involved with many working breeds including Collies, Rottweilers and Dobermans. Martyn had a slightly different introduction to dogs having grown up with Pugs! We purchased our first GSD together in 1994 and along the way have had many trials and challenges.
Our sons Kieran (16 years) and Owen (14 years) both enjoy the dogs and help with their training and because of their wish for a dog more their size, we added the cardigans to our family (little did we know how addictive they can be). The boys are also great at helping socialise all our dogs and our puppies are handled by the boys from the day they are born.
2017 saw the Star Wars pups leave for their new homes, and we are looking forward to their progress reports.
2016 started with sleepless nights as we had the arrrival of Mint's puppies on 6 January (known as our "Red" litter), and we have had a busy couple of months. A visit by Johanna brought a suprise development of one of the puppies joining her in Finland due to Johanna falling in love within minutes of being in the door! The remaining pups are scattered across England and one has flown all the way to Russia for her new life.
April brought the patter of tiny paws for Sorrel x Miles Grandpups living up in Shropshire with Mairi Dugdale and June brought the patter of paws for Karen Hewitt at Cardhew with her Comfrey "Beatrix Potter" Puppies. July started badly with the loss of Tansy. July also brought some life lessons, which we will never forget.
September was brilliant as we attended the Cardigan Corgi Show where we were amazed and delighted with our results, Judge was Sarah Taylor (Bymil). Rubus was awarded a fantastic 2nd in Graduate Dog, Clover a 2nd in Yearling Bitch and Nella with Alison another 2nd in Graduate Bitch and Donna showed Loony to a good 4th. Pepper strutted her stuff with Johanna in Post Graduate and got a 4th and Fennel went out in Limit Bitch and was placed 5th of 12!
November brought the patter of paws with our long awaited Star Wars litter, Fennel was the mum and Dad was Sarah Taylor's Jake (Bymil the Big Picture). This litter was 3.5 years in the making and we were delighted with the 9 pups and choosing who would stay was a challenging time. Look out for Phasma (L. Jakku) and Warwick (L. Forest Moon) in the future.
2015 brought some highs and sadly a huge Low. We started the year helping Yvonne Caul with a blue x tri litter and they have now travelled far and wide from Harlow to the States and the Netherlands! March brought our own litter from Pepper and Miles, and we have expanded our family to include Salix and Clover who are just like their parents and we co-own the ever busy Nella with Alison Stevens who already has a Miles son called Lister.
May brought the low when at the end of the month we got up to Dill being unable to walk, and after consultations with our very knowledgeable vets we made the horrible decision to let him go to a better place after he was deemed a poor candidate for spinal surgery. Literally days after losing Dill, Fennel and Rubus decided to get it together to produce a litter of pups who would be known as our "Royals". Fennel managed to hide her condition for quite some time and only at the end of July did she show her condition, giving us 10 days notice of the impending arrivals!
August and September brought about busy times with the patter of paws. At the end of September we were invited to take the pups to the new Vet School at the University of Surrey so that the dogs could be used in a promo for the opening. The results can be seen above. Also at the end of September was the annual Cardigan Welsh Corgi Association show, we took along quite a few dogs, and the big awards went to Pepper, who was handled by her breeder Johanna to 1st in Post Graduate Bitch and the last 5 bitches in the show, and Clover who was 1st in Puppy bitch, beating her sister Nella into 2nd place. A good time was had by all.
2014 saw about our first Finnish x English litter with the arrival of Mint x Comfrey puppies. From their quiet slide into this world, this litter were a joy to have. They were our first free whelped litter and the "Coins" as they became known, showed their strong characters from very early. Sadly 10 days before these were born, Mint's father passed away, and Hanna-Kaiser, his owner, asked to come to England and to choose one of his Grandchildren. So for Easter we had lots of laughs with Johanna and Hanna's visit to England. Hanna choose our only Brindle male, and "Sisu" as he is now known, travelled with me as hand luggage to Finland and has helped dry the tears and is spoilt rotten! Two others went to homes who had said farewell to other old cardigans. Two went to existing homes of "Liebehund Cardis" and, you have guessed it, one stayed on! We also co-own Loony with Donna and Paul Morris, so life is always busy. 2014 did end on quite a high when we took Donna and Paul to a christmas show and not only did Comfrey go Best of Breed, but Rubus was placed best puppy and went on to get our first ever Group 1 Placing in the Pastoral Puppy group.
With the pups arriving the weekend of Crufts, we stayed homed, but the "Liebehund" flag was flown by Karen and Murphy who was awarded 3rd Post Graduate Dog under judge Sandra Muckle. This means Karen and Murphy can return in 2015! We do hope to see them in a ring before then. The rest of the year has been quiet on the dog front whilst Jo got her back fixed and the house got a bit of a refit with a new kitchen and staircase. We have managed to qualify Tansy, Rubus and Loony for Crufts 2015 - however they didn't get to go.
In 2013 we decided that we would only do a few shows, allowing more time at home with both the boys and the dogs. An outing at Swindon and District resulted in a Group 3 in Puppy for Pepper. Although we didn't do so well at Crufts this year, Dillon came home with a 1st place and qualification for next year, and Murphy (L. Dash of Bitters) was placed 2nd and a big class. 2013 brought the decision to stop breeding GSDs, as we are unhappy with where the breed is going and the health and temperament problems that we are seeing all too often. We no longer feel comfortable choosing stud dogs.
May brought us a Sorrell x Miles "Summer" Litter and the pups are now as far afield as Canada, Ireland, Kent and Staffordshire.
Another few shows and Pepper again did well with a Reserve Best Bitch at just 10 months old and a Puppy Group 2. We also won Best Breeder in Breed under judge Diana King at Windsor. Martyn took Comfrey, Pepper and Mint off to the Bournemouth show in an attempt to qualify them for next year's Crufts, only to come home with all 3 qualified for 2014 and also Comfrey qualified for life when he was awarded a Reserve Challenge Certificate. September brought Johanna Flink and Tarja Peltola over from Finland for the CWCA Club show under Sheena Stalker. All the dogs strutted their stuff, and Pepper & Mint joined another of Johanna's Breeding and took Johanna and the Big-Wood's Kennel to "Best Breeder in Breed" a first in the UK for any Cardigan breeder from Finland.
2012 was busy from the start, we started the year with Sorrel "Alice in Wonderland" pups, these were our 2nd generation of Cardis and with them having Dill as a father, you can imagine the characters we got! Crufts was to bring wins from both Mint and Comfrey when they were handled by Johanna Flinck. Next was to see Murphy (Tansy son) have his first weekend in the ring and come away with 3 first prizes and qualification for Crufts 2013, his owners Karen and Adrian Marks were delighted. May has also brough a HUGE surprise when Fennel went to The Scottish Kennel Club show as was awarded 1st Puppy Bitch, Reserve Challenge Certificate and Best Puppy in Breed, this delighted us as you can imagine. A bit of a break from the show ring before supporting a local show who put Cardi classes on for the first time and wow didn't we do well! Tansy got a very respectable 2nd place in Open, Puppy lineup was Fennel, Murphy and then Mint and Dill stood alone in Post Graduate before going BOB and Fennel gaining Best Puppy. Things got in the way of the next couple of shows and then it was Martyn, Tansy and Dill's turn to go to Wales and how well they did, with a 2nd place for Dill in PGD and a 3rd for Tansy in PGB, which means they have both qualified for Crufts 2013 alongside Comfrey, Fennel, Mint and Murphy! In November 2012 Pepper travelled with Jo from Finland via Copenhagen, Paris and the Channel Tunnel, with an overnight stop in France. Fortunately the trip went well and Pepper travelled so well. The year ended with Miles returning home after the death of Jo's Nan. We look forward to all that 2013 will bring.
2011 has started with a blast. First in February we qualified Tansy, Comfrey, Sorrel and Dill for Crufts 2012, then we went to Crufts and got a 1st Puppy Dog with Comfrey and 2nd with Tansy in Good Citizen Bitch. We were then lucky enough to purchase Mint from Finland. June brought us Tansy's 2nd and last litter, from which we kept the beautiful Fennel, and her siblings are now scattered around the country and one has even flown off to Finland! An early christmas present arrived in the form of Mint on 8th December and this was further polished with her qualifying for Crufts in Helsinki on the 7th and in Birmingham on the 12th!
2010 was good, we had the joy of seeing Dillon go Best Puppy in Breed at the South East Corgi Show and then get a 3rd in Special Puppy Dog at Crufts. In April our first Cardi litter were born (Our Dreams). Tansy also had a busy Spring as once she weaned her own litter she took on rearing a foster litter of Pembroke corgis.
2009 Started with a big high, when Tansy went Best Puppy in Breed at Crufts which delighted us. We brought Dillion home in April. and then in May we had the temporary arrival of Miles, who has ended up staying in our family, although now living with Jo's mum Marion. We finished the year off in style with Dillon went on to be "Best Puppy in Breed" at the Welsh Corgi Show in November.
2008 was when we first introduced a cardigan in the form of Tansy into our lives and boy have things changed since then!