The above pictures are of Sydney at age 2 (left photo) and at age 6 (right photo). In the Fall of 1994 we had tried to breed our Golden (Samantha) to Shurmark’s Split Decision MH *** OS CAn FDHF. Unfortunately (or fortunately depending on how you view things), the breeding was not successful. I spent some time with Valerie Ducross (Sprint’s owner) and explained that I really wanted a Sprint puppy. I asked about recent Sprint breedings, received several names of dog owners, and eventually narrowed the list to Carol Lantiegne at Adirondac Kennels. At the time, Carol only had 2 puppies left from the Sprint breeding and she indicated that I would be welcome to make a selection. I traveled to Mexico, NY with my daughter Hannah and subsequently spent 3 hours in Carol’s kitchen before selecting Sydney.
With expert advice and shared training experiences with members of the Lake Champlain Retriever Club, Sydney competed in our club hunt tests and AKC Junior Hunt tests. In August 1995 Sydney completed (4 for 4) the requirements for a Junior Hunter title and one month later received the Golden Retriever Club of America “Working Certificate Excellent” title. During her “work” and “playing” career, Sydney competed successfully in AKC Obedience Trials, acquired her Senior Hunter and Master Hunter titles, and was also enrolled and participated in the Vermont Therapy Dog program. In between these activities, Sydney had 4 litters – bred twice to Gentlemans Bailey Gun’N Gold (MH, **, WCX, OS), once to FC Windbreakers Premium Vintage (OS & FDHF), and once to AFC FC Glenhaven Htrs Mn Baronet (MH, OS, FDHF). As a result of the accomplishments of the puppies in Sydney’s first litter, she received the Outstanding Dam title which was awarded by the Golden Retriever Club of America. Sydney was our first dog to receive this honor. From the 4 litters, her offspring include 1 Field Champion, 2 Qualified All Age, 10 Master Hunters, 1 NAHRA MHR, several Senior and Junior Hunters, 1 Outstanding Sire, 2 Outstanding Dams, and 1 Field Dog Hall of Fame.
I still have to chuckle when I recall the phone conversations that I had with Ann Pauls. Blue was from Sydney’s first litter and at 11 weeks of age, he was still residing in the Best household. Ann called us from Nevada City, California and indicated that she was interested in acquiring a male puppy from our litter. When advised that we only had one puppy left and that he was a male, Ann asked what was wrong with him. She asked the same question at least three times and then advised that she would call back the next day. The next day she called and asked the same question. I finally told her that we would send Blue to her only on one condition. We would give her a week to decide if she liked him and if not, we wanted him back and we would pay the return air fare. Blue made the trip to California and Ann called to let us know that he had arrived safely. The next day she called and said that she would not be sending Blue back to us.
Under Ann’s guidance, Blue earned his Master Hunter, Qualified All Age, and Companion Dog Excellent titles. Other golden retriever owners sought Blue as a sire for their pups and as a result, Blue was our first Sydney offspring to receive the Outstanding Sire award from the Golden Retriever Club of America.
Porgie and I have often mentioned that Ann and Blue were responsible for putting the Porjay kennel name on the map. As a result of other folks seeing Blue and his capabilities in competition, we had 5 of 9 puppies from Sydney’s third litter go to California. Three of those pups became Master Hunters and one earned the AKC Field Championship title.
Lexie is another special dog from Sydney’s first litter. On January 8, 2015 she celebrated her 17th birthday and passed a couple of months later. Lexie provided Jennifer with her first opportunity to train for AKC Hunt Tests and AKC Field Trials. Lexie produced puppies for Jennifer that have also been successful in Hunt Test and Field Trial competition. Lexie was responsible for helping Sydney attain the Outstanding Dam title and she is our first puppy to attain the Golden Retriever Club of America Outstanding Dam title for herself and owners Jennifer and Mariel Adsit.
Bob & Meg Beck from Pebble Beach, California came to Weybridge, Vermont to “pick-out” their female puppy. They were looking for a dog that could potentially compete in Field Trials. As many folks know (certainly the Labrador dog folks would tell you so) the chances of a female golden retriever attaining field champion titles is relatively slim at best. Due to Meg’s interest in field trials and her selection of a professional dog trainer, Lulu accomplished what few golden retrievers have been able to attain. Lulu did earn the AKC Field Championship title and at the time, she was the first female golden retriever to receive that title in 14 years. Lulu subsequently was chosen by the Golden Retriever Club of America to receive the Field Dog Hall of Fame award. Lulu is Porjay’s first Field Champion and first Field Dog Hall of Fame member. I had the opportunity to visit Lulu in Pebble Beach and can attest to the fact that you can have a “working dog” that can also be an excellent house dog. Lulu was comfortable being with a trainer and other dogs in a kennel environment but equally enjoyed being spoiled at home by Bob & Meg.
Porjay’s Vida Blue Streak MH, WCX *** Sarah & Blue
Blue was Mark Isenberg’s special friend and companion. Mark started his Hunt Test and Field Trial adventures with Blue and along the way it may be debatable as to who learned what from whom. Blue is another one of Sydney’s pups that fortunately (for Porgie & myself) stayed in Vermont. For many years we had the opportunity to watch Blue “play the crowd” and saw Sarah (11 years old at the time) handle Blue for one of his Master Hunter passes. Blue accomplished the following: won a 47 dog Field Trial Qualifying Stake, received a field trial Amateur 2nd place, received a field trial Open 4th place, all age points in the United States and Canada, qualified for the National Amateur Field Trial championships, and made it to the 8th series of the 2010 Canadian National Amateur field trial. Blue was Sydney’s first puppy to compete in Canadian field trials.
Pictured above is Emma who is owned by Jill Moffett. Emma was born on 02/27/2014 and attained her Master Hunting title on July 24, 2016. By all standards this is a young age to receive a MH title and our congratulations go to both Emma and Jill.
PUPPY PICTURES FROM PORJAY LITTERS