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About Andy and Liz

We live along the Oldman River, near Fort Macleod in southern Alberta. The landscape here is a unique blend of rolling native grasslands, sandstone cliffs and cottonwood forest.

We both grew up with dogs in our families. As a teenager, Liz competed in obedience and junior handling with her beagle.

Flat-coated retrievers have been a big part of our lives for over 20 years.  We spend much of our time working and playing with our dogs. We believe that flat-coated retrievers need something important to do. They are an intelligent breed with a strong desire to work. We hunt with our dogs, primarily waterfowl, but some upland bird hunting as well. In addition to hunting, we compete with our dogs in obedience and show them in conformation.

We feel strongly that dog health is directly related to diet and the environment. We try to raise our dogs and puppies as naturally as possible, feeding  a mostly raw diet consisting of meat, vegetables, bones and some grains. We have spent much time researching canine diets and nutrition in order to give our dogs the best diet possible. We do not use harsh chemicals in our home, kennels or on our dogs.  To find out more about how we raise our dogs, click here.

While we only have the occasional litter, when we do, we aim to produce flat-coats that are attractive, physically sound, have excellent working abilities and represent the breed at its best. We are very fortunate to have been trusted with some exceptional foundation dogs from long-time flat-coat breeders at Prairielights, O'Flanagan, Bramatha and Flatterhaft kennels.  

We feel that improving the health and longevity of flat-coated retrievers is an important goal and to that effect, we have allowed our dogs and those we have bred to participate in a variety of health-related research projects over the years. In addition, we enter all of our dog's health information into Flatcoatdata.com (including those we have bred) and are involved in the genetic diversity testing project at University of California at Davis. We support Betterbred.com and have all of our current dogs in their genetic diversity database.

We are members of the Flat-Coated Retriever Society of Canada and the Flat-Coated Retriever Society of America. Liz served four years as President of the FCRSC.  We are both passionate photographers and enjoy capturing our dogs and the natural landscape around us with our cameras.  

When we are not doing dog stuff.... Andy is a retired biology professor at the University of Lethbridge, but continues his research on behavioural ecology. Liz works on a variety of bird research and scientific illustration projects.

Why Blazingstar?
Blazingstar is a native prairie wildflower that grows in profusion on our land. The purple flowers blanket our grasslands in August and September, creating a spectular display.  Blazingstar, more formally known as Liatris punctata, has roots that grow up to a remarkable 16 feet long! They are a hardy plant and individuals can live for as long as 35 years. It seemed like an appropriate plant to base our kennel name on.  "Blazingstar" is registered with the Canadian Kennel Club.