Wednesday, 23 January 2019
A WOMAN has spoken of her delight after breeding a litter of one of the rarest types of dog in Britain.
Lavinia Bolton, who lives near Wyfold, was thrilled when her two-and-a-half-year-old dandie dinmont terrier Jemma gave birth to five male puppies.
She named them Roger, Mikey, Pepper, Salty and Billy with help from her daughter Charlotte Snowden and granddaughter Audrey, 12.
The breed, which is named after a Sir Walter Scott character, is so rare that only 79 puppies were registered with the Kennel Club in 2015 and just 80 the next year.
Originating in the Scottish Borders, the dogs were first bred to kill badgers and otters.
Mrs Bolton bought Jemma when she was a puppy more than two years ago as she had always wanted a dandie dinmont.
She said: “They are very rare. We went to Crufts three years ago and put our name down for one. Within a month a litter came up for sale in High Wycombe.” She chose Jemma and decided to breed from her when she was old enough.
She went through the Kennel Club and Dandie Dinmont Association and Jemma was paired with a Crufts champion dandie dinmont called Harley, owned by a woman in Plymouth. Mrs Bolton said: “She came into season and went down to Plymouth to stay with her new husband for a week and she came back pregnant.
“I took her to the vet and they said I had to have an X-ray to see how many puppies there were. They couldn’t keep her still enough to scan her and thought there were four heartbeats.
“Usually they have two or three and the fact we had five was, I think, due to better feeding.”
The puppies arrived 10 weeks ago. Mrs Bolton said: “I sat up with Jemma all night and she gave birth with no help from me whatsoever. She’s the most wonderful mum. She did everything for the first three weeks.”
All five puppies have now been sold via the Kennel Club and are due to leave home soon.
“I had so many offers, I could have sold them 10 times over,” said Mrs Bolton. “Because they were all boys I thought it was going to be difficult.”
One has been sold for £1,400 to a buyer in Finland while others are going to homes in Padstow, Uttoxeter, Reading and Norfolk.
Mrs Bolton said she would miss the puppies after getting into a routine with them.
She said: “I just fell in love with their faces — they have got this really puppy face and big eyes. I haven’t been able to go anywhere because they are fed at 8am, noon, 4pm and 8pm. It has curtailed my social life!
“They are totally loving and lovable but they rule the household.”
She intends to breed Jemma again in a year’s time.from
Audrey, a pupil at Langtree School in Woodcote, said the puppies were about as big as her hand when they were born.
She said: “It has been really fun, especially when we could let them outside. They are older and more playful now so they sort of attack you.
“I’m going to be quite sad when they leave. Roger is my favourite so I’m going to be quite upset when he has gone.”
Ms Snowden said: “They have been lots of fun — they are such amazing characters, especially Roger. I like watching mum walk across the yard followed by five puppies.
“It has been a pleasure to have them and we’ll be sad to see them go. They are so cute.”
14 January 2019
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