Aquest Goldens is a small hobby “boutique” golden retriever breeder with over 30 years experience.   I obtained my first golden, Whiskey, when I was a teenager and was told I needed to train him.  Off to obedience class we went where I was bitten by the dog world bug.   Whiskey did receive his CD in three shows but hip dysplasia kept him from going any further.    I do wish there was Rally Obedience back then.  He would have loved it.  My second golden, Chelsea, was going to be my first “show” dog and although she was beautiful, her movement was less than ideal.  She did give me experience in the breed ring and was the first one of my dogs to earn a field title. 

Since then, Aquest goldens have earned conformation championships and obedience, rally, agility and field titles and of course, most importantly they are much loved family members.  I primarily breed to keep a puppy which is especially why a lot of thought is put into each breeding with the highest consideration going to temperament and health.

How the puppies are raised

Since I do not have litters often (once every couple of years), when I do have a litter just about everything revolves around the puppies.  Someone is with the puppies pretty much 24/7 during the first two weeks.  The second two weeks they are only left alone for an hour or two.  Thankfully, there does not appear to be a shortage of folks who want to help out by being a puppy nanny.  Having a number of people coming in to help adds to the puppy socialization. 

All the puppies receive Early Neurological Stimulation (Bio Sensor) exercises between three and sixteen days which helps to develop mentally sound puppies. For the first four weeks or so, the puppies live on the main floor and get used to the sounds and activity of the house. 

Between 4-5 weeks they are moved to their playroom.  The playroom gives them more room to run around and a separate potty area to start the housebreaking process.  They also are started on a schedule of feeding and play and are not under constant supervision which helps to develop some independence.  In the play room, they have their play pen which gives them 8 x 8 area which contains a potty area, a sleeping area and a playing area. This area also contains crates with no doors.  The puppies get used to the crates which is the first step in crate training.  When they are being supervised, which is at least four times a day, they are let out into the whole room which is approx 20 x 20 which allows them access to all sorts of enrichment toys including puppy size agility equipment.  In addition, the puppies are brought back into the main area of the house, separately, for one on one time to get them accustomed to being away from their littermates.  Depending on the weather, many meals are feed outside to help encourage potty training. 

Temperament testing at 7 weeks helps us determine which puppies are placed in which homes.  All puppies are examined by our veterinarian, checked for worms and vaccinated prior to placement.

After the puppies go to their new homes, Aquest Goldens will continue to be a resource for the life of the golden.