The Zuleika Story
Zuleika Finnish Lapphunds is a boutique kennel situated in northern Tasmania, Australia, about 10 minutes from the centre of Launceston. Our dogs enjoy a rural aspect with two acres of undulating hills to run on.
Whilst 'Zuleika' is a fairly new Finnish Lapphund kennel, but I am not new to dog showing and breeding. I was 'born' into dog breeding and conformation dog showing. My mother bred and showed Whippets and Pharaoh Hounds under the Crownhaven prefix. Later she and I bred Whippets together under the Zuleika prefix. I am a former Tasmanian State Junior Handlers Representative (1996) and am now a qualified Junior Handlers Judge.
I moved to London in early 2004, which marked the beginning of a 12-year hiatus from dogs. Returning to Tasmania at the beginning of 2016, we immediately began our search for the perfect breed to join our family. A chance sighting of a Lappie set me on an unexpected course. Fleur (Ch. Armahani Iolite Ilo (ai) HT) came to join us from Jacqualine Lincoln of Armahani kennels (Victoria, Australia) in May 2016. We were instantly in love with Fleur and the breed. Then, in September 2016, Jacq began looking for a new home for Bennigan (Sup. Ch. Armahani Heliodorr Hulivili (ai) ET) after the passing of her good friend Vanessa Brotto (Articmal), to whom Benni had belonged. As soon as I saw his photo I knew he had to come to us. But Vanessa had left strict instructions: Benni was to go to a show home. And so I agreed. October 2016 saw me re-enter the ring.
I count my blessings every day that these two Lappies of such exceptional quality have formed the foundation of Zuleika Finnish Lapphunds. I will be forever grateful to Jacqualine Lincoln for providing me with such an exceptional start in Lappies. Not only for entrusting me with these two exceptional dogs but also for her unwavering support and guidance. Thank you, Jacq! Zuleika's colours of silver and gold and the theme of our first litter (born May 2018) are both tributes to these two beautiful foundation dogs.
Zuleika will only ever be a small kennel. Our dogs are first and foremost our family members. As such, we do not breed regularly (an average of once a year). When we do, hours of consideration and research have gone into the planning. This commitment to remaining a boutique kennel also means we are proud of the support we are able to provide to our puppies' forever homes, particularly in those 'tough' first 18 months. It also means we reliant on families who are willing to allow their Zuleika puppy to be a part of our future breeding program.
Whilst my primary interest is in conformation showing, my firm belief is in breeding dogs who are capable of doing the job for which the breed was intended. In August 2018 I visited Finnish Lapland to see first hand the environment in which Lappies work. It is vital to remember that as 'cute and cuddly' as Finnish Lapphunds are, they are working/herding dogs, physically and mentally built to herd reindeer in thick snow.
The most important aspect of breeding is to breed healthy, well-adjusted puppies. All breeding stock are hip/elbow scored and eye and heart tested regularly. All puppies are DNA tested for relevant hereditary diseases, including prcd-PRA and GSDII (Pompes). Our puppies are born and raised in the house (in our open-plan living area), where they are exposed to children, visitors, common household noises and of course receive lots of cuddles. We also have a cat and poultry, which the puppies are exposed to.
Please be aware that simply 'putting your name down' does not guarantee you a puppy and we do not allow buyers to 'pick' their puppy. Puppies and their forever homes are carefully matched, based on the lifestyle of the family and the personality of the puppy. Gender, colour, show and sport preferences are also taken into consideration. All puppies are sold under a written contract, which outlines my expectations of the new owner and in turn what the owner can expect from me.
If you would like to be considered for a Zuleika puppy, please head to our 'Puppies' page. If you any questions about my breeding program or Finnish Lapphunds in general, please don't hesitate to send me an email.