Early in 2007 we decided that we
would like to introduce a second breed to our kennels. After much research we found a breed that is very similar to the Spanish
Water Dog but also very different. We spent a long time looking for a suitable breeder to import our dogs from and finally
were put in touch with Heidi Thomas, from Wales. Heidi breeds and shows under her affix of Mournebrake.
Heidi has been a breeder and expert
on Hungarian Puli´s for the past twenty years, so we knew we were in good hands. Many emails, telephone calls and arrangements
later we finally drove up to Santander at the end of May to
collect our two new dogs.
Our two dogs were very kindly being
brought over on the ferry by Tony and Zach, who were collecting their Spanish Water Dog.*
After a very long journey from Málaga,
which took an extra four hours, due to the torrential rains and wind between Madrid
and Burgos, we finally made it.
The exchange went smoothly and we
were on our way home. We arrived about 2.a.m. with two very bewildered, but very well-behaved, passengers.
You would think that introducing
two dogs into the household in the middle of the night was not the best idea. However, our Spanish Water Dogs are very laid
back and after a quick sniff and a few barks took very little notice of the newcomers. If they were humans they would raise
their eyebrows and say “We have seen it all before!”
After a quick walk and a drink the
Puli´s settled down in their crate and slept until morning!
With Heidi´s help the two bitches
we decided on were Ch. Mournebrake Bittersweet, (Xzara), a six year old black bitch and to keep her company Mournebrake Izz
She Fizz, (Fizz), a seven month old black bitch.
Xsara has the typical long corded
coat that sets the Puli apart from many other breeds** Going for a walk is a lengthy process as people stop and stare and
want to ask many questions. Her coat swings along as she walks and it is a pleasure to watch her run with her cords flying
out in all directions like a giant spider. Xsara has a wonderful disposition and is extremely well behaved. She is very loving
and is quite happy to snuggle up for a cuddle on the settee.
As Fizz is so much younger her cords
have yet to develop and when she arrived she looked like a fuzzball on legs. Fizz is very lively to say the least and we affectionately
call her the Tasmanian devil………..she whirls around non-stop most of the time and is the complete opposite
to the calm nature of Xsara.
There are very few Hungarian Puli´s
in Spain, as far as we know, so we were
very pleasantly surprised in August to be contacted by a lady from Huelva,
Cadiz. Her bitch had just had a litter of seven, six bitches
and one male. She wanted to know if we were interested in the male and so two Puli´s became three with the arrival of Spyro
aged seven weeks.
* See the story of Pippa on the
rescue and re-homing page.
**Similarly coated breeds are the
Komondor, a giant, white corded dog also from Hungary
and the Bergamasco from Italy.
Puli´s and Dog Shows.
To give the Puli´s as much exposure
here in Spain as possible we are taking
them to any local dog shows that we can. The first one was a “Fun Day” a few months ago in San Pedro. We entered
Xsara in a huge, mixed breed class to see what the response was and how she behaved. She of course behaved impeccably and
is so easy to show that it is a pleasure to be in the ring with her. Success, however was not the order of the day as I don´t
think the judges knew quite what she was! While we were at the show we were interviewed by the Marbella TV reporter and later
appeared on the local TV station with Xsara.
Last week on 8th September
we went to an evening dog show in La Cala de Moral, the other side of Málaga. The judge was very impressed with both Fizz
and Xsara but preferred the heavier-boned Fizz who was awarded BOB over Xsara. We also got an Excellent 2nd with
our brown male Spanish Water Dog, Ronaldiño de Eternaprimavera, in the open dog class.