What is your specialty?
American Akita breeder & exhibitor
Tell us more about what you do.
We are always on the go and being on the road so much, travel can be a consistent challenge. I fell in love with some very large and powerful dogs. While traveling with a pack of Chihuahuas would have proved much easier, we really enjoy these dogs and accept the challenges that come along with them. We spend most weekends at AKC events or PSA/FR trials, which involves quite of bit of road expense, but also requires that we have the best equipment to help with the daily management of what we own. We needed tough, safe and durable. That’s why we looked to Dakota.
What gets you pumped up every day about what you do?
These dogs! The best part of working with dogs is that every day is a new challenge. We’re constantly looking for new ways to shape and build behaviors and solidify the bonds we have with our four-legged counterparts. I think working with dogs keeps you on your toes. Every day can be something new, so it’s a very exciting hobby to have, but a challenging one. It is a hobby that I find continuously pushes us outside of our comfort zones and I think that’s necessary to progress and grow as handlers.
What goals have you not accomplished?
With the Akitas, my biggest goal for my kennel is to have versatility. I want dogs who look the part, super typey & clean, beautiful conformation .. but I also want dogs who have the drive to work and ability to excel in venues outside of the ring. Sports that people say “Wow, an Akita?” That’s challenging with this breed, as independent thinking breeds take a different approach, but the capability is there. Ultimately I’d like to see every dog in my yard with a Versatility award. Rome wasn’t built in a day. We will get there.
What keeps you up at night in pursuit of your goals?
Setbacks. I think one of the most important things in dog training - and one of the easiest forgotten - is to remember to celebrate even the small victories. It can get frustrating, working towards something and not seeing the progression at the rate you wanted or expected. I’m not a patient person! But I have to be. When something doesn’t go as planned, it leaves me thinking about it. I replay what went wrong, what I could have done differently. We have to be mindful of our mistakes to progress and improve, but we hold ourselves and our dogs back when we dwell on them.
What do you love most about the Dakota 283 products?
The quality of the product and the durability. I have a dog here who was terrible in a kennel. She was a Houdini and could break out of or escape from every one she was in. I’ve spent a lot of money replacing crates and trying new things with her. Since we do what we do and own the breeds we own, sometimes crating is an absolute necessity. Dakota is the first crate to provide me with an actual sense of security when traveling with my dogs. These kennels just hold up. They’re second to none in quality & so far, the crate hating dog has actually been very comfortable in them. It gives so much peace of mind when we’re on the road, knowing our dogs are secure. 10/10!
1030 Old Clarksville Pike
Pleasant View, Tennessee