I have been “part of the pacK” all my life. My grandparents raised and trained champion field trial black labs. I spent a lot of time with my grandparents because both my parents were working. One could say that I learned dog training through osmosis and its second nature to me. I spent long days training in the field with my grandparents, and if they weren’t training, they were judging or competing. From all the hustle and bustle of being on the road, they would often find me curled in a dog crate asleep in the back of the Astro van when I’d finally had enough.
Thanks to my grandparents, from an early age I was exposed to the process of breeding. We often had several litters in the home, and I remember them fondly. I had the grand job of socializing the puppies with children. I would sit in dog bowls and read to the puppies, play dress up, chase, tug a war, and curl up and sleep in the whelping box with a sleepy puppy pile (which I still do). The days just seemed so magical with puppies around. My entire childhood and young adult life was spent surrounded by black labs. So you might say, I know them well.
As one would imagine, I considered being a small animal vet when I went to college. So I was a kennel girl and vet tech through most of my college years gaining real world animal experience. I graduated from Texas State University with honors and received a BS in Biology. So I actually enjoyed those really nerdy biology lectures on genetics and diseases. But then marriage and children happened, and my dreams of becoming a vet quickly faded and my focus changed to family and photography. I ran my own boutique photography business in my late 20’s through my 30’s. I photographed high end weddings, children/families, and commercial work. I am an award winning international photographer, and many of my photographs have been published in popular magazines. As photography became a saturated business, I had to learn how to set myself apart with a more boutique business model. Boutique business concepts and similar business ideas are things I would love to share with the ALAA and its members.
I have been breeding Australia Labradoodles since 2008. I thoroughly enjoy my current job. I love the puppy tail wags, the smiling customers, and the warm and fuzzy emails from satisfied clients. I am very passionate about Australian labradoodles and maintaining the integrity of the breed through health quality, beauty and temperament.