Located on the borders of Cambridgeshire and Bedfordshire, the kennel specialises in the improvement of the working Labrador.
DEFRA Vetinerary Licence
Contact: Ken Byron Tel: 01480 213356 Mob: 07956 142363 Email: firstname.lastname@example.org
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Our daily life revolves around our working Labradors, their breeding and training, and competing with them in the Kennel Club field trials.
Our aim is to breed Labrador puppies with the exceptional temperament for which the breed is famous, and to better the intelligence and bidability of the iconic working Labrador.
We only breed from those adults that have proven themselves as having the high intelligence that is essential to regularly participate in the Kennel Club Field Trials - these are real life working gundog competitions, designed to test a working dog to the absolute limit of its ability. Working Labradors are introduced to the sport at an early age and revel in the opportunity to display their ability to the full. To say the dogs enjoy these competitions would be an understatement.
We have a breeding programme, so at times through the year we will have puppies. Clever puppies are essential to our breeding programme. Intelligent puppies train quickly and easily - they make interesting and loyal companions both in a pet home and in the sporting field.
From time to time, we will also have adult trained Labradors for homing as pet companions, as well as fully trained working dogs for field work or competition.
The Copperwheat kennel will never purchase an adult Labrador for breeding or training. Occasionally, and only following extensive research into pedigree and breeding lines, we will purchase a puppy. But only if that puppy achieves the training standard necessary to compete in the Kennel Club Field Trials might it be included in our breeding programme.
We need, and breed, intelligent Labradors - dogs that will learn quickly and remember the often complicated demands of a competition handler - dogs that, once trained, can be trusted to stay calm under the most stringent competition conditions.
The Labrador breed has a unique and well known temperament, but we need far more than that from our breeding lines. It is paramount for our dogs to have the ability to remember what they have been taught, and for them to put that into practice. New owners often comment on this, and think it astonishing how quickly their puppy learns the rules of its new home.
While our interest is a sporting one, most of the Copperwheat labrador puppies are homed purely as pet companions, and are never worked or competed with at all.
They make very loyal and intelligent family pets, and our attention to their breeding makes the regular early training processes very quick and easy for anyone taking the proper interest.
We take an ongoing interest in any puppy that leaves us. Ongoing support and advice is always available throughout the puppy's lifetime.
We diligently keep a feedback book of e-mails and photos received from new puppy owners. This is open at all times for anyone to browse.
All Copperwheat Labradors are health screened to ensure that only those that are absolutely medically sound are used in our breeding programme.
Labradors are prone to certain eye conditions, some of which are hereditary. To ensure that these genes are not passed to our puppies we have all our dogs eye tested by a
specialist canine ophthalmic vet. Once tested, each dog has a certificate issued confirming it has perfect and unaffected eyes.
Hip and elbow dysplasia is also a condition well known in the Labrador breed. At Copperwheat we have all dogs hip and elbow scored at one year old, to assess the possibility of each dog presenting this condition. Low scores are essential.
The average hip score for Labradors in the UK is a total of 14 (left and right hip score combined). At Copperwheat all our dogs have combined hip scores of below 11, this greatly reduces the possibility of any progeny presenting with dysplasia.
In recent years another genetic condition known as Centronuclear Myopathy (CNM) has become more widespread in Labradors. Here at Copperwheatr all our dogs have been
DNA tested clear of the CNM gene causing the clinical condition. So all our puppies can be homed with confidence.
CNM presents in puppies up to and around two years of age, reducing muscle in the dog to the point at which the dog cannot move without pain. The condition is usually fatal. sometimes a dog will survive, but it never recovers and requires close nursing attention for the remainder of its life.
Anyone thinking of homing a Labrador should in our opinion make themselves aware of the CNM condition and guard against homing any Labrador that cannot be proven clear of it. Potential new owners can find further information and how to avoid purchasing a puppy with this condition from The Alfort Veterinary College, France at www.labradorcnm.com.
All Copperwheat puppies must pass a stringent veterinary health check prior to leaving us for their new homes
OUR KENNEL FACILITIES
Please be aware that we are NOT a boarding kennel.
The Copperwheat kennel buildings are brickbuilt with mains drainage, electricity and heating. Each dog has spacious accommodation. The separate kennels enable sight of the other dogs. Each kennel has a separate sleeping and exercise area. All kennels are lockable. The kennel complex also houses a fully equipped kitchen.
In a separate building we have three custom brick built whelping kennels with mains drainage, electricity, heating and its own kitchen facilities.
The Copperwheat stud dogs are the backbone of the kennel. It is these dogs that have set themselves apart by proven ability and intelligence in the very competitive Kennel Club Field Trials. It is these genes that have been passed on to our current generation of puppies.
Our stud dogs have been producing large litters over past years. They all have exceptionally low hip scores, clear eye certificates and clear CNM certificates.
Stud dogs are regularly retired in favour of the younger and more recently qualified dogs.
Bitches that we choose to breed from are usually only allowed three litters, they then retire and either wriggle their way into the house with us, or are rehomed to friends or family to enjoy the lazy life.
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If you are thinking of owning a Labrador for the first time, you will have a lot of questions before committing yourself - and that is the way it should be.
It is not our intention to sell dogs or puppies. But it is our intention to make absolutely certain that anyone thinking of homing a Copperwheat Labrador is fully aware of all the aspects of owning one.
It is not difficult, and the rewards in companionship, loyalty and sheer fun are huge, but owning a dog does not suit everyone. Once you have the facts you can then decide, in your own time.
For those interested in providing a home to a Copperwheat puppy, visits to our kennel are encouraged when a litter is in prospect. Typically a visit will take about one and a half hours: we will explain to you the health screening that takes place with all our dogs and show you the vital documentation that every potential Labrador owner must be aware of before making a purchase. You will also see Labrador puppies as well as part and fully trained dogs.
When you leave our kennel you will have a good idea of what is involved in homing a Copperwheat Labrador, how to get started with the initial training, what a Copperwheat Labrador puppy will look like as an adult, and what we would expect of it.
If you have any questions or need advice of any kind about our Labradors, or the working Labrador in general, we will be pleased to help you - just give us a ring or e-mail.
Contact us for a chat about Labradors if you think you are ready to own one. We will tell you all the facts about homing one of this beautiful and intelligent breed.
Visits are by appointment only.
Ken and Vivien are Licensed Breeders. Ken is a Kennel Club registered non-panel field trialling judge. When not judging or competing he can often be seen helping in some way at any of the many
club events held during the year.
For most of his life, field sports and working dogs have been an integral part of daily life for Ken Byron. With others, and while still in business, he managed a driven pheasant shoot for more than 15 years. He is a committee member of two distringuished Field Trial Societies and a regular member of a further forty two Working Labrador clubs and societies.
He has strong views on the breeding and training of working Labradors and has had articles published in the sporting press.
He is always available to help anyone with a Labrador training issue and, when time allows, likes to fly fish for trout.
He retired from business in 2003 and lives with his wife Vivien on five acres of countryside on the Bedfordshire/Cambridgeshire border.
You may be interested in seeing a random selection of pictures of our dogs in training, competing in field trials and just having a good time. Please click on "Gallery" above.
We can show you hundreds of picture ...... but there's nothing like seeing the real thing.
Ken and Vivien Byron Tel: 01480 213356 Mobile: 07956 142363 E-mail: email@example.com
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Copperwheat is a Kennel Club protected affix.