The Chocolate Clan
Our love of labrador retrievers started in 1999, when Dave brought home a squirming bundle of energy. Meg's Chocolate Clan Koko had arrived in our lives.
In 2004, we bred Koko to Irish Creeks Brady and had a happy family of 10. Despite her best attempts to shoo them out the door at eight weeks, we kept Koko's Chocolate Clan Kassey. With this breeding we attempted to improve our puppies hips by breeding an excellent with a fair. Kassey's hips have turned out to be good. Since that time we have learned that there are many other factors to consider when breeding Labrador Retrievers (Please see Labrador Genetic Tests).
Kassey passed all her genetic tests so we bred her when she was six years old. She was surgically A.I.ed on January 4, 2011. The sire was Way-Da-Go Call of the Wild, also know as Sweet Retrievers Drake. Drake was an American dog and had obtained his FC and AFC. Descriptions like awesome were often said about him. He was owned by Scott Spalding.
Kassey had a litter of seven on March 4, 2011. There were three boys and four girls. We kept one of the girls and have called her Maggie. We also had Grace returned to us at two years of age because her forever family could not keep her. Grace has become our daughter's dog and travels with her.
In 2014 Maggie and I travelled to Illinois to meet Bill and Marcia Butikas of Blindfaith Retrievers. They have an excellent line of dogs and excellent breeding program. We bred Maggie to Blindfaith's Bustin' A Move. Maggie had a litter of seven males and one female. In 2016, we were hoping to return to Illinois, and repeat the breeding, however timing is everything and an expected litter at the Illinois end meant we opted for AI instead. And we opted for AI in January of 2017. Maggie did not catch either time, so off to Illinois we went during the summer of 2017. A natural breeding proved to do the job and pups arrived on October 25 2017.
We kept a pup from the 2017 litter. Her name is Mekokama's Bustin' with Hope and, of course, her call name is Hope. She is an enthusiastic, smart girl and was our dam in 2021.
In 2019, Bustin' was not available to act as a stud, so we found a wonderful stud in Idaho by the name of Born to Hunt Gator Man, call name Gator, out of Steve Cronston's program. Gator does not have the impressive pedigree and hunt certificates that Bustin' has, but he is a proven hunting companion and has thrown a lot of good pups. Our litter did not disappoint.
We kept a pup from the 2019 litter. Her name is Maggie's Chocolate Clan Abbey, and her call name is Abbey. She is as quiet girl and we enjoy her company. We have had a lot of positive feedback about the 2019 litter.
In 2021 we bred Hope to a sire out of OakLane Retrievers in Tisdale Saskatchewan. We had hoped to repeat that breeding in 2023 but cancelled that breeding, as Maggie was diagnosed with lung cancer, and we spent the next 10 months walking with her through the journey of her last days. It was sad, but we were so lucky to have her for 10 months post diagnosis.
In 2024 we started the year with breeding Abbey to the same sire as our 2021 breeding.