Theresa, first let me say thank you for everything you have done for me. A puppy is not such a big thing for some people, but he has truly starting the healed process of my heart after the loss of my Roxy (from Desert Willow).
With my faith still strong, knew that God would see me though this and no matter how rough things got and I was able to hold on with His help.
During that time, my Daughter and her boyfriend were struggling and I wasn’t able to see my grandson (the other light of my life) for what felt like eternity. For 2 very long years I was only able to see my grandson, when my daughter thought it would be safe for her to "sneak" him over to see me. During this time 3-4 months at a time would pass without me being able to see him and when I did, it was only for a few minutes at a time. I felt like my heart had been ripped out of my chest.
To top it off, finances were horrible, I couldn't find even a minimum wage job, and often went without some basic needs and yet, I did not lose my faith that God would make all things right, He always does. I still had my beautiful Roxy, with her unconditional love beside me all along the way. She needed me and my attention so I had to "hold it together" for her sake, because she deserved the best I could give her because of her faithfulness and I just adored her.
On Christmas Day, I put a smile on my face, for my family, but at night I cried myself to sleep, night after night. My life had become a black hole. I felt I had no future and that I had nothing to live for. Here I was a 48 year old woman, who had put her ex-husband all the way through to his PHD and then, after getting the job for NASA making over $150,000 a year, dumped me a life that looked better elsewhere. I had no education, no hope and had finally become suicidal because I was looking for a way out of this pain.
Roxy had kept me going for so long and now she (the best friend a person could have) was gone. My faith in God's care for me was gone and I felt like I would end up being nothing but a burden to my children. While sadness and hopelessness overwhelmed me and I had finally given up I talk to you Theresa. You share with me about a puppy named Nero, who had so much potential and yet needed a home who would let him reach his potential, and knowing my situation, your heart wanted to help mine. Little by little sunlight started showing through the black hole that my live had become.
Theresa you may not think what you do (raising & adopting out these puppies) means that much in the great scheme of life. However, in my life..... It helped save not only me from death, but my faith in God again. I will never be able to say thank you enough for this wonderful young 4 legged gentleman named Brutus...... Ok, so he isn't always a gentleman, but he is always wonderful :)
One last thing, if you haven't already guessed I'm a HUGE Ohio State Buckeye fan. That is the reason why I originally was going to name him Buckeye. However, somehow Buckeye just didn't fit him. So, the Ohio State mascot's name is "Brutus the Buckeye" and he is sooooo much more a Brutus than a Buckeye, so that is why I changed his name. Plus, he wouldn't answer to the name Buckeye, but answered immediately to Brutus. :)
I first wrote a testimonial to Desert Willow Aussies May 22,2009 to let Theresa know how pleased we are with Bono our first Desert Willow Aussie ( red tri male) He is the son of Rocky & Grace Kelly. Now we have a new member in our family Trendy (a blue merle female) that is from the Boyd Ranch. Her mother is Little Bit from Desert Willow & her father is Spur from Boyd Ranch.
We are very active in several types of sports with our dogs. (More than average) Flyball, Frisbee, freestyle and much more. Bono is now 23 months old & has performed at the Texas state fair, for the Dallas Police department , Denton dog days, Farmers branch bark in the park & several other events. (Too much to list)
In fly ball racing he ran 51 feet over 4 jumps, then retrieved the ball out of the box then ran back another 51 feet over all 4 jumps again with the ball in 4.02 seconds. (THAT IS VERY FAST!) In Frisbee Bono is 2nd to none & I am receiving calls all the time asking if we can perform for all types of events. In freestyle he can do just about every trick in the book and some. This dog can do it all & he puts the D in drive.
If you are looking for something more than just a dog then you’re on the right track with Desert Willow. Just when I thought there was no way to top or equal Bono we were blessed with Trendy. Now 13 months old she can do flyball, Frisbee & freestyle as well (Amazing!) She has incredible drive & boy is she quick! She extremely loves & I would have to say that I am impressed with her in so many ways. (WHAT A DOG!)
I have read how male dogs make the best companions but after getting Trendy that is just not the case in my opinion. BOTH of my Desert Willow Aussies are great companions with my wife, me & each other.
I can tell you that if you decide to get you’re Aussie from Desert Willow or from Boyd Ranch you will be more than pleased. These dogs are very smart & of real quality without a doubt.
To touch base on the nutrition that is recommended by Theresa (She is spot on) our dogs excel in sports & the nutrition is a large part of that without question. We have stuck to her program from day one & it works! The top dog trainer in Dallas that we race our dogs with just so happens to feed her dogs the same food. This is a trainer that has been training dogs for over 30 years. She is known even outside of the country and is also in several books.
If you have any questions for me at all ask Theresa for my number & I will be happy to talk with you. That is how strong I feel about Theresa & her kennel. She is top of the line & so her dogs. The proof is in the pudding.
Now Theresa, thank you so much for our 2 wonderful dogs & all your help throughout the entire process. As you know I found your website one night & it is so hard to put in to words how happy we are that we found your kennel.
Jon Jodi Bono & Trendy Sanders -
To see Pictures & Video of Bono & Trendy Visit their Shutterfly!
I am still in shock for both losing Tuesday and her being gone forever and baby Rowena actually being my dog from all of you! Thanks to everyone that has contributed to me for the biggest loss and love of my life! I'm speechless! You are so kind. I pray God will continue to bless all of you and all of our DWA Aussie FAMILY!
To Read her story - Click here
Hey and Hello to my Desert Willow Family, I hope all is well with you all of you out there and with Mel, Therese and the Kids at Desert Willow Aussie's!
I want you to know that people who have seen Savannah cannot believe how mellow she is! Savannah is growing and so smart and of course learning more every day! She is so good about going potty, and I cannot believe how good she is doing! I think we have had only 2 accidents in the last week inside the house and only because I didn't get her out in time. She is sooooo much on a schedule which is perfect and yes squats on command as soon as I say "hurry up!"
Savannah is sooooo sweet and cute and I love her to death and can't thank you guys enough for this precious gift!
Shauna Hutchison FaesslerHey T~ Just thought I'd let you know that AdreAnna and Belle won Grand Champion Showman at the fair again this year and we just got back from State Fair and they received Reserve Champion! They are a great team!! Great dog!! Great family member!! We love her LOTS!!
Lyandra SweetHi Theresa, remember when i was looking for a puppy and I told you I wanted that companion to make me feel safe and you recommending "Bud" at the time AKA "Jacoby"? Well last week there was some weird things going on in our neighborhood and someone tried to break into our apartment after seth left in the morning. Thank... God they didn't make it in, but Jacoby heard whoever it was and stayed between me and the door the rest of the day. Now any time he hears someone walking by or coming to the door he runs to my side and just listens. His protectiveness is so touching to me that I am crying as I write this. i love him so much! Thank you!
I just wanted to drop you a note to say a big, "THANK YOU" for giving me the priveledge of having one of your Aussies. As a previous owner of an Aussie, I had some pretty demanding requests and you made the experience fun and easy.
I am so grateful to have my little Savannah. I have never seen a dog that is so loving to everyone including other dogs. All she wants to do when on her walks is play with any dog she comes in contact with. There is not one aggressive bone in her body. She has several boyfriends, two of which are Mastifs weighing in at 150 and 175 pounds!! Her other boyfriend is a pitbull. Watching her play with her pals is a beautiful thing to watch. Watching her herd those big boys is comical and they let her do it! If they put her in a position where she can't get away, she just runs underneath them.
Everynight when she finally tires out, she is on my lap fast asleep. I look down at my little pal and just smile. I love this little girl with all my heart! I don't mind anymore that she wants to start her day before the sun is up! She just wants to go outside and play while it's still cool and run her self made agility course in the back yard. Now that is a beautiful sight to see! Her natural herding and agility instincts are incredible. We have made up a game called, "daddy is gonna get you". When she hears this, she is ready to be chased and runs her agility course. I am amazed how agile she is. I hope one day we can come and visit to show you what this little girl can do.
Thank you again for being so supportive as well as a kind and generous individual. Thank you for bringing Savannah in to my life as I don't know what I would do without her.
I feel truly blessed having Savannah at my side every minute of the day.
Rande GibersonHi T! Savanah made it through her Spay procedure. No more cone and no more running up behind daddy and banging him with it! She is growing up so fast! Every day I look at my little girl and am so grateful for her and you for bringing us together. She has the kindest heart I have ever seen in a dog! You should see... her play tug of war with her pit bull boyfriend. If she gets it away from him, she brings it right back so he can play again. Thank you again for the best puppy in the world!
We purchased a puppy from Desert Willow Aussie's and Boyd Ranch Aussie's in March 2010 and have had a rewarding experience working with Theresa and Susan. They have been pleasant and helpful from the first day we met. Their research in the nutrition field is extensive and we trust their feeding protocol implicitly. We have been so pleased with our puppy and have completed puppy class and intend to go on to intermediate and advanced classes. These dogs are so intelligent you have to work hard to stay ahead of them. We feel the training classes are more for the owners than the dogs.
If we were to purchase another Aussie, it would definitely be from these breeders.
Joan and Chip Farley - Santa Fe, New Mexico
New Member Of The Elite Club of Two Desert Willow Aussies
I must tell you how happy Manny and I are with Fenway, our second DW Aussie. He is a sheer delight! He just turned four months and is thieving. Boston couldn't be happier with his new brother. Although they are exact opposites, they have blended together beautifully. It is such a joy to watch the two of them play together. Actually, they do everything together! The timing was perfect as well. Boston had just turned nine months when Fenway arrived. Thank you so much for your wonderful choices. The personalities are perfect and fit us to the tee. It is refreshing to know that someone actually listens when you explain what it is you are looking for and low-and-behold it comes to fruition!
Thank you for your wonderful dogs! Their vet and trainer constantly remark what beautiful, healthy dogs they are and I just beam and say, “of course, they're Desert Willow Aussies.”
We are very proud to now be a member of the elite club of two Desert Willow Aussies! Life is good.
BTW, did I tell you that we are celebrating our 25th wedding anniversary? The reason I mention this, instead of going away for awhile, we decided to get Fenway instead. We will celebrate with our two wonderful pups!!!
Jennifer Davis ChildressAugust 11 at 4:35am
Our puppy Livy becomes a dog today as she turns one-year old. I cannot begin to thank you enough for allowing us to bring her into our home. She brings us so much joy everyday and always gives us something to laugh about. Not only is she beautiful and super smart, she's just been a great companion for us and we could not be happier with her. Thank you for taking such great care to ensure you provide the healthiest and highest quality dogs available. We can hardly wait to bring in a little sister for her sometime in the next few years. You know I'll be contacting you when we're ready for that.
Diane Campagnone-ButenasJuly 15 at 7:47pm
Diane's Smile Box - Sit back and enjoy the LOVE!
I wanted you to know that this has not been any easy search for me. I have spent months looking for a good and reputable breeder. I spent months before that getting myself prepared for another Aussie. I want you to know that I come to you looking for a new "daughter". After Possum passed, my first Aussie in 2004 I thought I would never be able to love another dog again. I told you before that she was a gift from my husband who passed away just 6 months before she did. So, as I have healed and moved on with life, I know that it is time to open my heart back up to another Aussie. I have looked high and low. I wish I could tell you how many times I have looked at your website, but I don't think I can count that high. Haha! Something just keeps pulling me back to you and perhaps it may be my Possum and my late husband, Randy. Maybe, it's just God's way of letting me know that I can trust you. I have spoken to many other breeders, but not one of them had the love and compassion you do for your dogs. I am so thrilled to be a part of this new family. After reading every single testimonial, I have complete confidence in you and your decision for my new puppy. I was very hesitant about having someone else pick out a puppy for me, because who would know what I want and I believe He will guide you to know which puppy is right for me regardless of color. I also want you to know that this puppy will be an addition to a very big extended family. I am the oldest of 7 kids, who are all married with children. We are all very close and live within 10 miles of my parents and grandmother. We all get together at least once a month. They all know how important Possum was to me, and my desire to now open my heart up to another Aussie. They too are all looking forward to the new puppy. I called them all after talking to you today, and they are excited. I did explain the process and that it may be a while before the right puppy even comes along. I think my Dad, who is recently retired, is the most excited. He is already referring to her as his grand puppy. My husband, Harold is very excited as well. We went over everything you shared with me today, and he says that you seem to "know your stuff". Haha! He's a goofy man. I have even told Mouse, my cat, that she is going to have a new friend soon. I also wanted to tell you that I am really interested in doing agility competitions. I don't remember if I mentioned that to you or not. One more thing, I have an aunt who is a quadriplegic after suffering a brain aneurysm and lives in a nursing facility. I take my Mom to visit her every Sunday. Possum used to go with me on these visits. The facility she is in really encourages pet therapy. I just wanted to give you a little more insight to our lives. This isn't just a dog, this is a member of our family. I know you understand that, and for all the reasons mentioned and more I wanted you to know that we trust you. I will talk to you again soon. Take Care and God Bless!
Un-Solicited Testimonial: Pre-Puppy Experience: 3/26/09
I believe I now have the distinction of being on DWA’s waiting list for the longest time; it was September 2007 when I first started communicating with Theresa. I can’t begin to express my gratitude for, not only her knowledge of the breed and her expertise of healthcare, but how she guides you through every facet of raising these precious beings. Oh, I must mention her patience with me for consistently changing my mind…
Short story: My husband and I planned on moving to New Mexico in the spring of 2008. I retired in January of 2008 and the plan was to sell our home and get on the road by April. Unfortunately, we got caught in the poor housing market, so we decided to wait it out. Theresa never failed to contact me with news of a puppy she felt would be a good fit. I kept saying no thinking things would surly change in the housing market in the “near” future. Well, think again… not at the moment. My husband and I finally decided to hunker down and ride this out. After all, if ya gotta be stuck someplace, Northern California is not a bad place to be. That’s when we made the decision not to wait until we got to New Mexico to get our puppy.
Last month I had the pleasure of calling Theresa with news that we are now ready for a puppy, REALLY!!! Without missing a beat, she told me of a planned litter she thought would be good for me. She zero’s in on the personality and temperament, and if that means waiting, so be it. She works for what is best for you.
Last, but certainly not least, the ethics and integrity in this family is unbelievable. Not only do you hear the joys from the Desert Willow family, but the tragedies as well. Nothing is hidden. The truth is always out there, sometimes painfully so. Becoming part of the DWA family has been an amazing experience for me. I can’t wait for the day that I have the opportunity to meet Theresa and her own exceptional family face-to-face.
I’m chomping at the bit and will return with pictures of my new bundle when he arrives.
Thank you Theresa for who you are and what you do! Your kindness and wisdom are constantly being demonstrated. You are truly a blessing!
I could never thank Theresa and her family enough for the gift of my best friend, Tinkerbell! Tinkerbell is all that and a bag of chips! I think I got Marilyn's clone (her mother), as they have the same facial markings and same love for the children in their lives.
From the very first email, to the first phone call, I was in love with the Desert Willow Family. Theresa made my pup happen for me. I got my pup last year on Valentines night, and let me say she is the best Valentines present I have ever received.
I have an 8 year old son and a 3 year old daughter and they are her best friends, that first week she was home you could find her curled up with one of them napping. The best buds duo of my daughter Taylor and Tinkerbell is the most amazing thing you could ever see, my daughter is afraid to go "potty" by herself, so here comes Tinkerbell to her rescue!! Always sitting and keeping the monsters at bay so Taylor can do potty like a big girl. If the kids are doing something bad guess who comes to tell me, yup Tinkerbell.
The foundation for this great dog is Theresa and her children, socializing, playing and teaching her how to be a great puppy.
I am so lucky that I work for the most amazing Veterinary team in Massachusetts, and a doggie daycare, kennel facility with great training! So she gets to come to work with me, and has the best care ever possible, plus the vets I work with are very open to talking to you and LISTENING about anything and everything!
Where will my next Aussie come from? Desert Willow Aussie's! How could I go anywhere else? I not only got a pup, I got a family! With Desert Willow Aussie's you get such an amazing support group, and always someone to help if I have a question or need help.
Anyone getting a pup who lives in the greater Boston area, you need to give me a call as Tink loves playing with other Aussie's, and you would never regret coming to my work for the most compassionate care you could ever receive with a staff who understands the care an Aussie needs! Plus all the extra love I like to bestow upon those wiggle butts!!
You could not ever ask for a better Aussie, than a Desert Willow Aussie!
For all the Mass owners call me at Kindness Animal Hospital, Waltham MA. 781-891-2800. Jessica H.
It has been a few since I have given you any updates on Raymond and I just wanted to let you know he has been as rowdy and stubborn as ever! He is around 70 lbs right now and the copper trim really stands out against his coat. He is beautiful! He has been growing his shaggy, deep, fur coat for the winter and absolutely loves playing in the snow. I am waiting for the next snow storm to come through my home in Cleveland so I can take a nice picture and email it to you to use for your website if you wish. I have been checking the updates as much as possible and the new puppies are gorgeous. My grandmother, sister, and I are constantly trying to convince my mother to get a blue merle female from one the the next few litters but no success as of yet...doesn't mean we won't stop trying. I'm sure we will be be in contact over the summer for another dog. I get comments about Raymond everywhere I go and have forced several people to write down your website and check it out. I still am absolutely oversatisfied with Raymond and the how the process went. More and more I can see the pure love that you have for these animals and the way you run your business. Take care and I hope all is well.
I cannot tell you all how so important it was for me to get such a fine companion as I was able to get from Desert Willow Aussies. I brought my pup, Dempsey, a GORGEOUS red-tri male, home on Jan. 10. He made a six hour ride on the front seat of my truck, with NO problem. Before we got to the northern New Mexico border, this sweet boy was TOTALLY mine. He is an absolute delight!
I know there are SO many things that go into breeding beautiful, healthy, happy companion pets. It certainly cannot be easy. Theresa and her family are so committed to providing only the finest Australian Shepherds who are not only beautiful, but physically very healthy, and wonderfully socialized. Dempsey is a stellar example of the breeding and care that go into every pet coming from Desert Willows. I've started a little ritual with this pup that gives us both so much delight and comfort. His water bowl is in the kitchen. Every day, late in the afternoon, before his dinner, I have him outside and run him around a bunch, and he heads straight in and drinks heartily from his water bowl. I sit cross legged on the floor nearby. When he's had his fill, he comes over and curls up in my lap and we love on each other for a few minutes. Then, I get up, show him his prepared "mush" dinner bowl, and he literally runs straight into his kennel for his dinner. I know this ritual won't last forever, as this sweet boy was the biggest in his litter and will be pretty big when he's full grown. This pup is such a wonder, and he will grow up to be a fine, healthy, majestic grown dog. He is absolutely more than I ever imagined a companion dog could be.
If you are looking for a breeder for an Austrialian Shepherd, DON'T look any further. The Desert Willow family produces beautiful, happy, well-socialized and incredibly healthy companion pets. But, most important, it is so obvious how MUCH the love and care of the Desert Willows family goes into producing these magnificent pets. Thank you so much Theresa, Mel, Travis and Julianna!
Hi Theresa and Susan,
This is KOKO's Mom. She is going to be 5 months old. She has the MDR1 Mutant Allgergy (and I'm so grateful to know this ahead of time). It's close to time for her to be fixed and Art (our Vet) has all the MDR1 Information you sent in our packet. I could actually "throw-up" with worry about her and the surgery, but I know that with this information she will ultimately be fine.
Theresa, we ADORE her. She is soooooo cute, fiery, funny, cuddle and Gus (our other Aussie) seems to really enjoy her (even though she straddles his neck, sits on his head and gazes down on him).
I thank the Lord that you are informing all of us! I must tell you that Joe said "Do we really need to do that test - it's expensive?" I replied "we owe it to her and to ourselves, our Vet and our Breeder - yes". As we've learned from you, this problem becomes everyone's problem and heartache.
Joe absolutely adores this dog. He lost his dog 9 years ago and never got over it. KoKo has healed his heart, makes him laugh out loud, and turns him into mush! Our home has so much happiness from her.
Today was a big day for Joe when we read the results of the MDR1 email - he was stunned! I asked him if he was glad that she had the test and his response was a soft "yes". He has a deep love for her and if your emails save one life from MDR1, it's worth it! I cry when I read to Joe the losses from this "preventable" situation, how you describe our "Friends".
Beautiful Theresa, Bless you.
Joe, Janet, Gus & Koko
Dear Theresa and Susan,
I would like to send this e-mail out to thank you for the amazing dog I acquired from Desert Willow Aussie's. Gus is the best dog I could have ever asked or prayed for. He is so beautiful that I will have strangers stop me on the street and tell me how amazing he is. Not only is Gus beautiful but he is also incredibly smart and loving.
Every morning, like clock work, Gus wakes me up by putting is two front paws on the side of my bed, right near my face. He then starts to make a whining sound telling me that I cannot sleep in any longer. He is always very vocal, and will let me know if I forget to do anything, if he wants to go outside or even if he wants a belly rub. The funny part is I understand exactly what he is trying to tell me! His vocalness, along with his ongoing list of facial expressions, always lets me know exactly what he wants.
Gus has truly touched the hearts of everyone in my family. No matter where I am sitting Gus always wants to be right there on my lap, even if it includes jumping right on the books I am studying. Above all he loves his belly rubbed, and will lie down even in the mud if he can get one. No matter where I am Gus always wants to come with me, especially when its in the car. He is still not quite sure about the horses but loves going on trail rides. He is extremely loyal, and will always stick right next to my side. I didn't think he had a mean bone in his body, until a few weeks ago when we were walking down my driveway, and the construction man working our house was standing there, Gus immediately stood his ground next to me and let out a series or barks and growls. I was in shock (but also very proud) by what had just happened. Gus now will do that for any new body that enters our house, and it is nice to know I have him there protecting my family.
Along with Gus's great personality, he is incredibly smart. Whenever I leave our fenced in yard Gus will walk directly next to my leg, like he is on a leash. Even if a deer or rabbit runs out in front of us (and it has) he never leaves my side. When our trainer arrived at our house for our first training session Gus could already sit, stay and come on command just from me saying it around the house with our other dogs. My trainer was also amazed see that no matter where Gus would run off to with our other dogs, when you call his name he comes running towards you with the biggest smile on his face. We have some woods in our yard so when the dogs run in you can't see them, and our trainer said even with training most dogs will not come back when that far away. So now my trainer wants to keep him, ha ha.
Over all Gus is better than any dog we could have hoped for. He has the best personality and is extremely loving. I now understand what you meant when you said these dogs will always want to be right beside you. I am confident I made the right decision when I picked and australian shepherd, and also when I picked Desert Willow Aussies. You have made this a great experience and I would like to thank you for everything you have done. Without your months of planning my best friend would not be sitting next to me today. I greatly appreciate all your hard work, and when I have a ranch of my own someday I know where I will get my future dogs.
We first found Desert Willow Aussies in Jan of 2007. My wife and I were looking for an Australian Shepherd pup and I remember I kept coming back to the DWA website. I went ahead and put in an application and Theresa called that evening. I’ll never forget how excited she was when we talked on the phone. Her passion, love, and knowledge of both the breed and her dogs were evident.
Kati and I decided to get on a waiting list for a Kodiak and Omega litter that was due the end of March. Over the next several months I remember my inbox was flooded with emails from Theresa. There were pictures from other dog owners and a wealth of information to prepare us for our new pup. Then the litter finally arrived. I was hesitant to have someone else pick our pup out for us. How could she know what we wanted better than we would? Truth is she knows her dogs better than anyone else ever could and she hit the nail on the head when she picked out our Mona Lisa for us. Mona is a perfect fit for our family. I told Theresa we needed a dog with a great temperament, a good disposition, and I also wanted a dog that could go and help us move cattle when the time called for it.
Mona is a beautifully marked Aussie that is super intelligent. I worked with several trainers during her obedience work and all of them were thoroughly impressed with how fast she learned. The most experienced trainer, who has trained all breeds of dogs for 30+ years, said Mona is the second best dog she had ever trained. Mona is currently being trained for stock work. She shows great potential there as well. Not only has Mona excelled in those areas, she is also a great family dog. She is great around our daughter, as well as our new puppy, and even gets along with the cats sometimes. She is an all around great dog who has flourished under our love and attention, and she also gives us all of the love, attention, and devotion she has!
We have been so happy with our DWA Mona that we recently added another pup, Annie, from the DWA bloodline from Boyd’s Ranch. Annie and Mona love to play in the yard and run and swim at our farm.
I would recommend Desert Willow Aussies to anyone. Theresa is a fantastic person and a phenomenal breeder. It is rare to find what we have found in Theresa and Desert Willow Aussies. Her willingness to prepare her puppy owners, keep them informed, and the way in which she responds to our emails and phone calls whenever we have questions just show what a truly amazing family you join when you buy a dog from DWA. We never dreamed in a million years that when we bought our first pup from DWA what we were getting into. We didn’t know it at the time but when you get a dog from DWA you get much more than a great addition to your family, you become part of a family. You never knew you could be so close to so many people you don’t even know. But, that is what we have found through DWA and we intend to always be a part of this family for years to come. Desert Willow Aussies and Theresa are truly the best in show when it comes to finding a great Aussie.
Recently the Coulters took Annie (aka Stardust) in for training. Assessment below:
I just finished the training of Matt Coulters dog, Annie. I attached a copy of my assessments of her training week. I thought you would be proud to see her accomplishments. You are breeding incredible dogs. I believe God is blessing what you are doing there because you bring glory and honor to his name in everything you do. I would love to meet you one day! Well, enjoy my write up on Annie. Kati is coming over this evening to take the class and I will teach Kati everything Annie has learned. Matt and Kati are moving far away and I will miss them and their dogs ever so very much. Thanks for all the work you do. Because of it, I was able to enjoy the most incredible week working with one of your dogs. I become so attached to the dogs I train, letting go of them at the end is very hard for me. In fact, I usually cry. Matt thinks I am silly J. Take care, and enjoy the write up on Annie.
Hohulin's Happy Hounds
Dog Training/Dog Grooming/Boarding/Day Care Services
113 W. Gail St.
Goodfield, IL 61742
Business Hours: 8:00am-5:00pm Mon-Fri. Sat. by apt. only.
To Read ASSESSMENT (Click Here)
Hi T! My Nico (formerly known as Chester) is doing wonderfully! He is completely house trained, and it only a couple of weeks to do. He knows sit, down, high five, paw (&other paw), rollover, and is almost solid with the come command. He stciks to me like glue, I think I am his his #1 in our pack.... We take a 2.5 mile walk every moring, and as long as it is not raining, he loves to be in the woods. Our days are filled with naps, training, cuddling and well just plain old fun.... We then trek to the beach for our evening exercise; which he just loves too. He is sleeping through the night and wakes up every morning at 4:45 am... (I am hoping this will change to 6 am, as I am an early riser, but 4:45 is a bit too early for me). Nico and I are in puppy kindergarten classes, we just finished our second class. I was so excited to bring him, because I wanted to be able to show off all he had learned, but Nico had other plans. All he wanted to do was play with the other pups, and as a result, was a little Tasmanian devil. Our second session went a bit better, as he did not bark uncontrollably for the better part of the session. Nico's herding instinct has officially kicked in!. The trainer of the puppy kindergarten class has us shake a can of pennies, along with a stern "no bite" every time he feels he needs to try to "herd" us, by trying to bite our ankles, our legs, etc...... It is working, but the little guy is persistent.... Wanted to know if you have any suggestions that you have found to work better?
Attached is a scanned copy of the MDR1 test results which I received back from Washington University. He came back normal/ normal..... WOO HOO.
I look forward to hearing back from you! Take care,
Janelle N.-Espanola, NM
Love............"Sadie and her new mom-------Faye"
The Gummi Bear Puppy - A Story of Hope
By Deb Bunds
Belén, NM—Dozens of members of an extended family from across the nation came together on the eve of Mother’s Day to help turn a young woman’s tragedy into triumph. The weeklong saga ghastly began with a puppy’s senseless slaughter, restoringly intensified with humanity’s kindness and generosity (including forty-two pounds of Gummi bears and over $1000 to purchase and ship a new puppy), and horrifically climaxed with a daughter’s sudden and tragic death.
Kaitlin Connolly of Cass Lake, MN, a nursing home LPN in her early twenties, witnessed the death of Daphne, her Valentine Day’s puppy; and within days received literally boxes (email inbox and a cardboard one) of encouragement and the puppy fund donations from the kennel family (fellow patrons) of Desert Willow Aussies (DWA). This week, she will receive the special delivery, airmailed kennel with Georgiana, her new registered Australian Shepherd puppy. The sender of the Gummi bears and a generous portion of the puppy replacement money, Tom P. of Burr Ridge, IL, had not known it was a favorite of Kaitlin. That same roller-coaster-of-emotions week, his twenty-seven-year-old daughter died suddenly in her sleep. In the midst of all the pain, Theresa Gorduyn, Owner of DWA, had the privilege of facilitating the shared joy of a new pet and the attempt to comfort in death.
The Desert Willow Aussie’s Kennel Family
In one of those condolence emails to Connolly, Matt and Kati Coulter of Goodfield, IL, puppy parent of DWA Mona, explained the DWA kennel family. “You obviously know by now that by buying a dog from Theresa, you are not just buying a dog, you are becoming part of a family. Being a part of this family has shown us many joys and losses of others, and our heart goes out to each and every one of those people; and now our heart goes out to you. We have learned that a dog lives to please. Remember how much happiness Daphne gave you. No one can ever take away what she gave to you—that in itself is priceless—and I am sure you will always cherish the memories you made with her. We will continue to keep you in our prayers. If there is anything that we could do for you, please let us know. Just know that we are thinking of you.”
Gorduyn gave her perspective of the DWA kennel family, “The Kaitlin/Georgiana story came as a very unexpected and unforeseen gift to me personally on Mother’s Day. Together as a family we've built a business that has not only profited our family spiritually, professionally, financially, and built character in us as a whole. This kennel actually changes lives through a community effort.”
She and her husband, Mel, of Belen, NM, chose for her to stay home with their children—Travis and Julianna (now in grades sixth and fourth). In support of that decision, they started a home kennel business five years ago. Oodles of puppies and kitties later, their family has expanded to include hundreds of members of Desert Willow Aussies.
When DWA Mom Theresa told that extended family about the crisis with an email, they responded powerfully and largely independently of each other by sending money to purchase a new puppy for the grief-stricken Connolly. Gorduyn gave details of the drama, “Kaitlin recently took Daphne home. . . . It had taken her an entire year to pay for this very special pup. We were proud to share this gift with Kaitlin, because we knew Daphne would be loved. . . . Daphne was in her own yard minding her own business, when a car veered off the road onto the Connolly’s property and hit this gorgeous puppy, never stopping the car to help. This happened in front of Kaitlin, and Daphne walked about ten steps towards Kaitlin, and then dropped down. She passed away in Kaitlin’s arms.”
“Daphne was hit by a maroon-colored SUV. That’s all I saw,” declared Connolly.
Gummi Bear Puppy’s Life
Connolly continued, “Initially I wanted a dog/wife for my male, Sam, and I ended up with a new best friend in Daphne. Her loss was terrible. I wanted her to experience herding and agility with me by her side. She was very smart and not afraid and was very agile.”
“I did a lot of research before finding Desert Willow Aussie’s; and then Mom and I liked Theresa when we first spoke with her, so we decided she was our breeder. Even though there might be less expensive puppies out there, she was honest and researched my pedigree to clear it and make sure that a puppy from her litter would compliment my pedigree in Sam. A litter did come sooner than Daphne’s, but Theresa felt there would be something better for me to come and encouraged me to wait for the next litter; which was good, because I needed time to earn and send money. It all worked out, she gave me pick of the litter which was Daphne.”
Cherlyn Pettigrew, Apple Valley, CA, also a DWA puppy parent, wrote Gorduyn about the privilege of giving toward the replacement puppy. “It is important for those like you and me, and probably most of those on your (kennel email) list, to remember just how much we have and how lucky we are. It is important to give to those less fortunate. She deserves one of your best."
“I really feel blessed to have this opportunity again,” Connolly declared. “I thank everyone at DWA for the new puppy and for the letters. I don't have a lot of money, but my animals are my life."
Gorduyn explained the choice of Georgiana and the impact of the kennel’s gift to her. “I decided to try to pick from the litter of the gorgeous Duchess, because it had one red tri-colored female (the same type as Daphne). This is not my litter Georgiana is really nice, and Kaitlin was very smitten with her. . . . She is very moved by all of you (in DWA). Everyday gets a bit easier on her as she is on the path of healing.”
The Gummi bear gift of Georgiana, spawned from Daphne's death and the resurrection of Kaitlin's hope have special meaning for Gorduyn, since the week-long saga preceded Mother's Day. “The benefits of working together as a family make me see that my dream and desires to stay home with our children, to raise them in a home where they have me with them when they come home from school, has given me opportunity to help a young woman know there are some really great people in the world; and they just happen to be Desert Willow Aussie puppy parents! That just boggles my mind!”
A Caring Community
Wayne Chick of Los Lunas, NM exemplifies the kennel community’s responses, "What a terrible tragedy. I can't even begin to imagine the agony experienced by Kaitlin. I realize there is no way to replace Daphne, but if we can contribute to a fund to assist Kaitlin in getting another puppy, please let us know."
“I was serious about letting me know if you come up short” of puppy replacement funds,” said Jacqueline Pereira of Benicia, CA, who had not yet received her DWA puppy. “I'm not the good- hearted person you are; I would have wanted to find the guy and run him over... So I have to make it up in other ways.”
Gorduyn concurred and responded to Pereira, “I'm with you on those feelings. I have it in me too!
“However, I know there will be justice in the end (if not here in this life, then later as we all must stand before God and answer, and this man will answer for killing one of His creations). No one ever really gets away with anything here, even if they think they do.
“An old proverb says ‘The truth will always find you out,’ and I tend to live by that rule myself. I've taught my children this line of thinking. They always seem to come tell me the truth, because they know it will be revealed one way or another; and if the truth comes to me any other way than through their mouths, the consequence is always much worse. I believe God works much the same. Yes, He loves, but He also gets angry too! Thank goodness.
“God has used this whole situation (not only for Kaitlin), but for me. Even with our flesh wanting to hurt that man (if we found him together, he'd not look very pretty today), getting beyond our anger, we all do need to forgive that man. That’s what I teach Travis and Julianna. Several years ago, someone brutally chopped one of our most precious cats in half, we were both devastated and angry; but I asked my kids, then ages four and six, ‘In Gods eyes, what is more important—Boo boo Kitty or the person who killed him?’
“They said, ‘The person who killed him.’
“’Why?’ I asked.
“’Because that person probably doesn’t know the Lord.’
“that’s right, so now with God we’ve got to work on forgiving this person.”
“I know my Lord is good, and He has taken care of Kaitlin through you and all the puppy parents who don't even know this young woman! The whole situation has made me realize that we have way more than just a kennel here, we have a family. ‘Blows my mind!”’
The Desert Willow Bursts into Bloom
Gorduyn elaborated on why she and her husband started DWA, “We sort of fell into this. My prayer has always been to work from home, so my children could have their mommy at home and learn work ethic from a family-owned and -run business, as I did growing up watching my father build a business from the ground up. I guess God knew what we needed, because the dogs and cats have pulled us together and closer than I had ever imagined. We giggle together over the cute babies, care for them, clean up after them and enjoy the new friends we make because of them.
“As you can see, we've naively created a community through the kennel. That has left us speechless, because it's been so unexpected. . . . We named our business ‘Desert Willow Aussie’s after a pretty flowering plant in our front yard “Desert Willow”.
“My children have experienced the fruit of hard work. Yes, I work the business, however, I cannot do what I do successfully without the kids (or my husband); so it's been a joint effort as a family. Many times our children have voiced (while picking up dog poop and cleaning together), ‘I love owning a kennel’. “’We love them (puppies and kittens) while they’re here with us and beyond, and even as we place them in your arms from ours.’
“I sometimes stop and stare at my kids, because I see them learning the incredible joy in working this dream together. They are very involved in the socializing of the puppies and kittens, so they are also enjoying the fruit of their roles in the kennel. I pay them for their work, and they always get extra funds, when they need it on field trips and outings with friends, not because I just give it to them, but because they've earned it. That makes them really appreciate working hard, because they're paid for it. They love to hear me say, ‘Good job!’ or ‘Wow! You did that without asking me?’
“A highlight for me is the realization of success from all our hard work: the puppies and kittens are healthy and loved, and our extended family stays in touch with us. Our on-going after-delivery care includes much more than such inquiries as seeking help in finding a dog trainer. I've enjoyed the opportunities of service along the way, which came as another huge surprise; because I had never thought in my wildest dreams, through a kennel full of animals, that I'd care for and nurture those in my community (especially a nation-wide one) to such an extent! Neat.”
Identifying with the Loss
Many of the emails to Connolly expressed empathy gained from similar situations. “Though we don’t understand it, we will eventually learn that God has reasons for everything,” said Joanie Kraft, Encino, CA. “I lost my dog (a ten-year-old) a little over a year ago and was comforted to find a new puppy at Desert Willow. Newt is now fourteen months old! What a nice companion he is, too.
“It may be tough to wait for another puppy, but I trust that Theresa will help you chose another one of her puppies as your new companion. I wish you all the best and know that all things work out for good, even though we don’t yet see it.”
In an email to Connolly, Trisha Drake of Arizona, another DWA puppy parent, summed up the thoughts and feelings of many who’ve encountered the Gummi bear puppy story and pre-shadowed the sentiments that were poured out to Tom, when the DWA family heard about his loss. “I read Theresa's email (about the puppy’s death) yesterday and immediately began to cry. I received a puppy from Desert Willow last year, and love him dearly. I can't imagine what you are going through. I can only tell you that we are thinking of you and only wish the best for you and your family. I am sure a new puppy will grace your life soon.”
Gorduyn summarized the future ramifications of this story, “This is and truly has been a very hard moment in a young woman's life; and, because of all of you in the kennel, I truly believe she is experiencing a special peek into good that can come out of a bad situation. We will never quite understand the ‘whys’ of something like this, but knowing God like I do, it's an awesome moment of realization and growth, as we see how privileged we are through such a wonderful (extended) family and of course God’s provision through you. Thank you.
“I know that He has used this (and all of you) to touch Kaitlin's heart in a very deep and loving way. She feels cared for, heard, and understood by all of you who love your dogs and know the depth of loss we feel when we lose them.”
What does the future hold for Desert Willow Aussie’s? Gorduyn enumerated her family’s ambitions, “We have plans to expand, and we've purchased twenty-two acres of land south of us to build "The Desert Willow" dream further. We're going to eventually have a bed and breakfast there along with fuzzy chickens, rabbits, ducks and possibly horses for folks to enjoy along with the puppies and kittens. That has been our dream. I’m not sure what God has in mind; but from what He's done through this current situation, I just cannot wait to see His dream for us and in His timing of course!”
For more information about Aussie’s or Persian kittens, contact, www.DesertWillowAussies.com.
Deb Bunds is entrepreneur with Ti-Él-Sí (TLC—Tutoring, Editing, Singing Services) in Belén, New Mexico and may be reached at TiElSiTLC@aol.com.
Friday (Noon) Mel met a wonderful friend that I've had the honor of knowing for years (Luanne) and her husband Scott and one of three Son's Jake, and shared an awesome lunch at her home (and enjoyed getting caught up on all the happenings in her world). She "is" the reason I became who I am today as a busines woman, she was a very important "MENTOR" in the "Filming Industry" and my work behind the scenes. She is "THAT" person who believed in my abilities before I did. She is loved.
We attended (Fri) a "Family Event" with my Family (as Los Angeles is where I grew up) and saw so many cousins, Aunties, Uncles & 2nd "LITTLE" cousins we had not ever met! My Auntie Maria (like my own Mom) went to so much work to make it all happen (wonderful food and hugs) and it was so very meaningful to Mel and I. Fun - Fun!
It has been a year since my Desert Willow Aussie's Sundance Kid "Sonny" came into this world and as I write this testimonial, I cannot help but feel incredibly happy and proud to boast about Theresa and her family and their amazing Kennel.
I have experienced everything under the SUN with Theresa, from waiting for my puppy for over 6 months to visiting the Desert Willow Kennel (with Theresa’s family) and ultimately bonding with the entire family (dogs, cats, and kids included) and throughout this time, Theresa has been become more then just my Breeder, because now she is one of my closest and dearest friends.
My experience with Desert Willow began in June of 06 when I first began my search of an Australian Shepherd. I fell in love with the breed before then, and I was determined to have one of my own. After weeks of searching online for reputable breeders, I almost gave up until I came across Theresa’s site for Desert Willow Aussie's. I remember looking at every tab on her site; being impressed with her candor as to pricing of why investing in a breeder is better then investing in a pet shop animal, online ads with puppies but no website or easy access and/or back yard breeders. But most importantly I was surprised with her obvious care and passion for representing the Aussie breed in a manor that truly depicts the seriousness of my personal commitment in owning, caring and training this exceptional breed. Furthermore, Theresa’s screening process was in depth by requiring applications with references, description of prospective living conditions and an involved phone call to pre-screen and to enlighten of the seriousness of owning a dog of this caliber, showed me that she was someone who treated her puppies as loved ones to be cherished rather then commodities to be auctioned off to the highest bidder!
After spending hours reviewing her site with a fine tooth comb, my anxious anticipation got the best of me as I sent her an application during of the “wee hours” of the morning. Much to my surprise Theresa responded to my application and responded within hours. Before I knew it we were talking at length about our respected backgrounds and love for the breed, I was sold.
Unfortunately, Theresa had just placed her current litter and explained to me that she would not have another litter available until the fall. Though I am an impatient person by nature, something told me that this would be worth the wait. I told Theresa that I would definitely wait for her litter to arrive if I could call her in the interim with any questions with respect to preparing for the puppy and his arrival. As such, we both kept our word. Theresa called & emailed with updates as to the status of my soon’ to’ be’ born’ pup, while I continued calling her to ask a myriad of questions on what to expect and how to prepare.
As a testament to Theresa’s genuine love for her own puppies as well as her clients needs, I recall her showing me an Aussie puppy that a breeder friend of hers just had and her willingness to give me what I initially desired (a drop dead gorgeous Blue Merle Male). Theresa gave me the option to go with this other breeder because she knew how much I wanted a puppy of this caliber and my anxiousness to have one sooner rather than later. However, knowing the bond I already established with Theresa and my anticipation for my new Desert Willow Puppy, I knew the best thing was to just wait for the upcoming litter with Theresa. As I soon discovered, I made the right decision.
When the litter began to arrive that I had been waiting for, Theresa emailed right away with updates, messages, and pictures to all the puppy parents who were also waiting on this litter within hours and days of the birth. She continued to answer ALL of my questions and concerns without reservation or judgment.
She mentally and emotionally prepared me for Sonny as she and her family continued to provide him with the utmost care, giving him the best food, love and socialization one could hope for.
As the time for Sonny's arrival drew near, however, I began to feel nervous about my choice. I had never purchased a “LIVING THING” over the Internet before and knowing that this was a big commitment, I wanted to be 100% confident that my puppy and I could bond. After discussing my reservations with Theresa, she offered to open up her home so I could come and see him. I immediately accepted her invitation and flew to New Mexico to see Desert Willow myself within 24 hours of our conversation and she had no reservations with allowing me to come at the drop of a hat, and welcomed me with open arms.
When I met Theresa and her family, I realized that her Kennel was everything she purported it to be. It was clean, there was plenty of space for the dogs to run and play, they are all well kept, well fed, and most importantly LOVED (with oodles of personality).
Taking care of the puppies, including my Sonny, was definitely a family affair that "from what I saw first hand" was a 24 hour commitment. Theresa’s kids were always willing and able to socialize the pups with each other and the other animals and provided an equal amount of time outside the pen to be with the family. Her husband, Mel, did more then his part ensured their safety in and out their whelping area in and out of the Kennel and is a huge part in the Desert Willow vision. And of course, there was Theresa, who was up morning, noon and night to check on, feed and monitor the puppies. Her commitment was truly second to none.
As for my interaction with Sonny, it was truly a remarkable experience. As Theresa predicted, he chose me. The bond he and I had was instant as he was instinctively protective over me when ever the other puppies tired to come close. Once he realized I was “his”, he was confident enough to continue playing with his siblings instead of fending them off all the the ripe o’l age of 5 weeks!
As I spent the weekend there, I was truly amazed to see how the puppies had developed into their own personalities, which oddly enough were the same that Theresa described just days after they were born. It was then that I realized she truly had a gift for doing what she’s chosen to do, and I defy anyone they could do it better!
Leaving Desert Willow was hard as I had grown attached to Sonny and I had bonded with Theresa and her family. I was at peace knowing that I would see both Theresa and Sonny a week and a half later in my home town where she had planned to meet up with several of the puppy parent from this litter so we could all get together and enjoy the puppies and meet for the first time.
Another testament to Theresa’s “matchmaking skills” was her ability to select puppy parents who also got along with one another. I was fortunate to have my puppy in the same litter with Janice, Ken and Kim people who I still maintain contact with and trade stories and pictures of our puppies, an added bonus that was unexpected.
I could never thank Theresa enough for this magnificent gift, Sonny has exceeded all my expectations and I KNOW it is because he is a product of Theresa’s exceptional breeding abilities. Sonny has been the glue that has brought healing and kept my relationship with my family together, as they all seem to treat him like he’s my Son! He has made bonds stronger and made me realize the beauty in humility of caring for something beyond myself. He is Love in the truest sense as he is loyal, compassionate, playful, understanding, and most importantly his love IS unconditional.
Theresa is my breeder, my friend, and now apart of my family. I have 100% confidence in her Kennel, and I will never go anywhere else for a dog! Not only did she stay with me (emotionally) before his birth, but she continues to mentor me even now (more then a year later). I could not imagine every purchasing my dog from another breeder. I am certain that I would not have the same memorable experience.
By the way, since my Sonny has arrived, I now have a new addition to our family and his name is “Sam Elliott” which is Sonny’s full litter-mate brother. Theresa recently contacted me about his situation and the fact that his family could not keep him because of personal circumstances, and their desperation to find him a solid “forever” home, she knew that I loved Sammy from the beginning too (I was wavering between Sonny & Sammy). So after we spoke I excitedly decided to take Sammy home to our family! It's so amazing I have both my boys to love and now I have TWO Desert Willow Aussie's, and had another great weekend with Theresa, Mel, Travis & Julianna and the cast and crew of Desert Willow at their Kennel. Not only is Sammy being added to my family, I now truly have an extended family in New Mexico (by the way, love the Coffee and Red Chili!).
Las Vegas, NV
| "Hi Theresa,
We finally have compiled some of the many pictures of Ginger and are sending you some of the most recent to update you from the summer. Giner has grown into a small Aussie (between 35-40 pounds; about 23 inches high) and probably not much taller than when you saw her last. She is beautiful to us a maturing into a lovely adult dog.
On our road to being a healthy member of our household and in preparation to attempt to certify her as a therapy dog to visit hospitals/nursing homes, etc., Ginger has graduated from puppy school, novice and advanced novice. We decided to take a break from obedience training (for my sake mostly as to go on is more of a commitment to compete in obedience which I'm not sure I want to do). WE are in our second week of agility training which will go on for six months. Then, we will see if we want to complete. Ginger is also a beginning "herder". Weather permitting, we go to Edgewood for her to participate in herding training. Her instincts are good and she is very smart. I could tell of many stories of her response to people and situations. Ginger is also a "social butterfly". Greeting everyone is of utmost importance to her. She would make you proud (except in her hour or so in the evening when she is holy terror; hopefully this will end with puppyhood)
~Elena, John and, of course, Ginger
| "After doing much research on Australian Shepherds and deciding that this is the breed that I wanted to bring into my home (and my world) I began the great task of finding a breeder on the Internet. When searching for someone who's reputable it's always frightening because you really do not know if the person is actually a "REAL" breeder along with being reputable! Desert Willow Aussie's was the first or second breeder site I came across, and I found myself continually wandering back to it every time I researched another breeder! I was somehow drawn by the detail and care that was being presented to me.
While researching (and reading the testimonials on this Website, and the forum, etc), I began to realize the feedback this kennel was getting based on their experiences, and found that there are many very happy folks out there with a Desert Willow Aussie!
Now as a proud owner of a beautiful Australian Shepherd from Theresa, Mel and her children, I also discovered that I've become apart of their extended family (along with a long list of folks) who care for one another and give support to each other and network between ourselves and actually communicating our issues about our dogs helping me to discover a whole new line of support in raising my puppy. That was a very unexpected gift of this entire process!
In working with Theresa, I have not found anyone else who stands behind their dogs like she does! She truly loves her dogs and cats and is into educating her kennel parents about nutrition, grooming and general health issues! I believe Theresa is doing what she loves, and it shows in the puppies she produces and she gave me a wonderful health guarantee in writing.A good friend of mine has now purchased her second puppy in a year and their first one passed away within four months of being adopted, and their second puppy is now facing surgery at UC Davis, at the young age of only 14 weeks. The surgery has to do with something genetic, and it's tragic to know the breeder they purchased their puppy from is not someone I would have ever adopted from because of that breeders lack of experience, wisdom and care, and they've now put my friend and her family at risk of serious loss! This is one of the main reasons why I spent so much time researching breeders to begin with!
My search actually began in Mid-Summer, and after finally making contact with Theresa who guided me and listened to my desires of a well bred show quality Aussie, I sent her a deposit that she did not cash until I made my pick from the litter 2 months later! When the puppies arrived it felt like a celebration as she and worked together to pick exactly what I wanted and needed (with her sending pictures and video to help me bond with my pup) and I finally ended up with Ella in my heart & home in late fall! This experience taught me that having a good experience (the excitement and anticipation) and a puppy from a good breeder is definitely worth the wait!
When I began this process I started off wanting a blue merle, and when one did not arrive Theresa was willing to put my deposit and paperwork aside for a future litter, but once I saw Ella's pictures, I realized it's not about the color -- it's about the disposition of the dog and the experience and care that goes into producing these wonderful dogs, I fell in love with her! My grandmother is an all breed dog show judge, and my aunt used to show dogs also, and they encouraged me to stay open, and also had serious fears because of Inbreeding and Line-breeding and all the genetic issues that come with walking too close to those lines, however, learning Theresa's background, and how she was so closely mentored by someone in this business for over 35 years and that she does not condone this line of thinking, so I fell safe with choice of Ella, and now know I made the right decision as I sit here looking into the eyes of my beautiful , healthy & loving dog today.Another attribute I love about Theresa is that she is open to new ideas, feedback, and input, and passes good information along to those who adopt from her, she holds onto you after your pup arrives safely making sure you'll never be left with a question unanswered. knowing I can call or email anytime, I've learned to rest that she's there ready to listen and help!
One last word, I am in school studying to be a Veterinarian, and I too have learned a lot from Theresa. She is one of the good ones. I trust my instincts, and have no regrets, and have made a new friend too!"
~Kim in San Jose, CA Owner of Desert Willow's Ella
| "Theresa, I want to take a moment on Christmas to thank you (and the breeder you lead me to from your circle of friends) for this little blessing in my life. Roxy continues to amaze everyone around her with her intelligence, beauty, and personality. I am getting ready to enroll her in "Obedience" class next month, as she passed Puppy Kindergarten with flying colors...of course!! The trainer (who raises and works with Border Collies) told me the last day, what a great dog she is, I will be working in Obedience with a Trainer who has Aussies so it should be fun. I can't imagine life without her even at only 4 1/2 months old!! I get stopped when I walk her constantly by people who want to know more about this breed. I also attached a few pictures of her and wanted to let you know that she is not just being "taken care of", but being "SUPER SPOILED", my Dad has been working with her and is so happy to know that I have such a great companion. Thank you both for caring so much about the dogs you raise and breed."
Merry Christmas and Best Regards,
| "Well here is my testimonial. About time huh? Hee hee.
I must admit. Me and Mom have been looking to get a pooch for a few years. It never happened though because my father was against it for some reason. I knew once I saw Jack on the Desert Willow site that was the dog for me. Just something about his look. Mom agreed but Dad said he was only cute. It took him about 2 minutes looking at the single picture when he said "We'll go get him on Friday". Me and Mom were so happy.
Nerves started setting in on the drive down. Me and Theresa had spoke and she put Jack on such a high pedestal and at a great bargain to boot. But I be honest with you. He wasn't even close to what she had said about him. He was much much more! I was scared he'd freak when he saw me and my wheelchair. He darn near dumped me in the dirt when we first met.
Lively lil pooch! So friendly, smart and listens fairly well. I say fairly well cause he is a pup. He has fit in real well back at the house with our 21 year old cat Cleo. He's kinda motherly when it comes to her. It's exactly like Garfield and Odie. And yes she does get him in trouble often. One thing about Jack is he's overly friendly. He's the type if we ever get robbed he'll be there to meet and greet the robbers. HAHA. Well I say that jokingly.
So far we have went on many adventures together. I have scars on my arms from tire burn I got during Puppy-Garden and he has learned to watch out for those goat heads when we go to the lake together. We have done so much together.
I really want to say he is my dog. That's the reason we bought him really. But he's mom ma's dog. That is the truth. But me and Dad are fine with that. Cause we have a darn good pal with Jack. He's more then a pet. He truly is a family member and best friend. And if you have a doggy bone he'll be your best pal too!
I give Desert Willow and A++ and a + some more! Fantastic Job Theresa and Mel!,
~ The Douglass Family (Jimbo, Jan, Jimmy and Jack), Los Alamos, New Mexico
"I called Theresa in August when my 21-year-old only child was getting ready to start her fourth year at college and was getting her own apartment. To say that I had a huge, empty void to fill is an understatement.
|"I cannot begin to tell you how lucky I feel to have found Desert Willow Aussies. We lost our second Aussie (Maggie) after 14+ years with us, and were at a loss as to where to go for another after we found that our former breeder was no longer breeding Aussie's. I wanted a larger size Aussie, and was having a very difficult time finding one in our area. I was nervous about going "online" to find a dog, but started looking around the net anyway. I found Theresa, and she sent me some pictures of two blue merle females that she had. When I called and spoke to Theresa, and we hit it off immediately. I found her to be warm and caring, she spoke with a great deal of love in her heart when she talked about her dogs. She took the time to answer all my questions, and told me how her kids loved to go out and play with the puppies. After our conversation, I had a very good feeling about getting a dog from her.
Upon picking Chloe up at the airport... She was everything and more than we expected. She is extremely well socialized, she loves everyone! She is great with all the kids in the neighborhood, and adores my two sons. She is a true Aussie and is quick as a whip on training. I had her sitting with hand commands within only 5 min's, and she was only 2 months old. In the short two weeks we have had her, she is already following commands such as "heal, sit, down, stay" and she can even give high fives and shake hand to paw. She loves to play with other dogs of all sizes, and really wants to be friends with our two cats, (even though they are not as certain about that endeavor themselves).
Everyone that sees her says she is so beautiful! - I think she is one of the prettiest Aussie I have ever seen (spoken like a true mom). I thought our previous Aussie was going to be a tough act to follow, but Chloe is giving Maggie a strong run for the money already. This has been a fantastic experience, and I feel that I not only have a great companion in Chloe, but have made a lifelong friend in Theresa.
I would buy another puppy from Desert Willow Aussies in a heartbeat!"
~ Mary Abbott Johnston, Washington
"Just wanted to thank Desert Willow Aussies for the greatest little pup. I searched the internet for months for a pup after losing my beloved Aussie of 13 years before I found Desert Willow. I had told Theresa Gorduyn about my Aussie and she knew what I wanted in a pup. She had a new litter and Theresa knew which one was to be mine. I confirmed the match after a drive from California when the puppies were just 3 weeks old. I bonded instantly with him. For the next 5 weeks Theresa kept me informed of his activity and sent me pics on a regular basis. I felt I knew the puppy before I actually had taken possession of him. Julianna and Travis (Theresa's two children) were a key in socializing the pups. I have grandchildren and I know that was important. When it came time for shipment Theresa made sure all arrangements were in place and my new pup would arrive safe and safe he did. "Boomer" is the greatest! He is so social, must meet with everyone and loves kids. He is doing great on his walks, his learning to "let go" of chasing the squirrels, and is now fetching a Frisbee. He jumps to catch it but at the wrong time.
** After a tough battle brought on by unfortunate circumstances, Boomer passed away at only 15 months of age. Our condolences and thoughts are with Susan during this difficult time. ~ Desert Willow
"I cannot begin to express my gratitude in helping me through this grieving process. I had Boomer such a short time but the pain goes deep. I just thought Boomer would be with me a long time. I am grateful for the many wonderful memories of Boomer and his escapades in his very short life. I miss him terribly. I know someday another beautiful Aussie will come into my life. I will wait patiently and take it as it comes. when the timing is right it will happen.
I have received a dozen or more emails from your extended family expressing their sorrow. Some saying how they read my notes on the forum and that helped them make the decision to go with Desert willow Aussie, some remembering Boomer on the your site and others just getiing thier new pup and Jimmy extending his offer. They were all very special to me. As I responded to each of them I know that it is helping me get through this time of grief.
Many many thanks to you and God bless you for the work you do."
"I lost my dog and friend "Scout" an eleven year old Blue Merle Female in January of 2006. I noticed an ad in the paper and decided to call and inquire about the puppies, however I wasn't sure I was ready just 3 months after the passing of Scout, but knew I wanted a puppy at some point.
Theresa was very friendly and made me feel comfortable. She told me about her litter and was very informative, also listened to my situation and told me about specific pups I may be interested in. By the time we finished our conversation I was sure I wanted a new friend in my home!
After receiving email pictures from Theresa I was ready to drive to her home and try to choose a new puppy. So I called Theresa and she made it easy for me to meet with her, even working around my schedule.
Upon arrival to her home, I was impressed with the set up for the puppy pens, and she even sprayed off my shoes with disinfectant so I would not contaminate the puppy pens focusing on cleanliness and attention to detail to keep the puppies safe and clean.
Kodiak and Omega (Sire & Dam) were on hand, and Kodiak followed us and stayed close to Theresa, and he was beautiful! Omega was also just as gorgeous, but stayed inside the house as she was in puppy protection mode, however seeing these wonderful parents gave me confidence that I was in the right place!
Theresa was very patient as I went pen to pen several times. I was not committed to sex or color when I arrived, and there were so many to choose from! Eventually a male, blue merle started to stand out to me (and tugging on me). Theresa called him James Dean for his striking looks, he also seemed a bit of a rebel, I was sold!
After returning home, Theresa kept me informed on JD's progress and sent pictures along with information to help me get ready for the new arrival. I would have to wait about 4 weeks before my pup would be ready to leave his Mother. When the date was set to pick up my pup, Theresa made it possible to have a friend of mine meet her in Albuquerque for the pick-up. He arrived in Durango healthy, beautiful, clean and with his first shots. Theresa went out of her way to accommodate me in every way from the first phone call to present. Moots (don't ask me why, I just like this name) has exceeded all my expectations. He is beautiful (people can't help themselves to stop and meet him when we're out on walks (which is fine with Moots), I even must adjust or walk schedule to times that we won't be seeing too many people or I'm not sure what time I'll get home! He is full of energy, healthy, and shows all the wonderful characteristics that make Aussie's such a desired breed!
I want to thank Theresa for helping me acquire my new "Best Friend". My experience with her and Desert Willow Aussies has been great, and I could not be happier!"
~ Richard L. Durango, Colorado
|"Leo is the most amazing little guy I've ever met. I wish he were a person because I just know he would give me great advice on how to better myself. As it is, I've already grown from being with him as a puppy. Leo and I (and sometimes Matt, my boyfriend) go everywhere together. One of my favorite places to take him is downtown Portsmouth, NH where nearly everyone stops to pet him or tell me how cute he is and Leo just soaks it all up. He adores children and goes up to each and every one he sees, wagging his little stump
of a tail. He is gentle with everyone and as mellow as could be. He is just as content to go on a three-mile walk with me (four proved to be too much as he would lie down and refuse to move in every spot of shade we found) as he is to race up and down and around open fields as he is to sleep in every room in the house as long as I am in there with him. When he and I take car rides together I always feel a twinge of guilt because every place we go is half an hour to forty-five minutes away but Leo could care less. If I'm in the passenger seat with him, I'll roll down the window and he'll stick the entire front of his body out of the window and ponder at all the things we pass. This may be cute for some but I have to wrap my arms around him so he won't fall out! He'll hang out of the window for a few minutes and then find a comfortable position on my lap, usually with his head resting on my arm or hand, and snooze the entire ride away. When he first came home with me, he used to whine and wimper nearly every other minute because he missed his family so much but by the end of the first week, that had stopped completely. My brother Tyler is five and has a difficult time understanding that dogs don't understand English. Fortunately, Leo is the most patient little guy and just gazes at Tyler with his I'm-evaluating-every-move-you-make eyes when Tyler tries over and over again to get Leo to "chase after the cats," "watch TV" with him. Tyler even says things like, "Leo, what's your favorite color?" As far as my six year-old sister Kassidi is concerned, Leo delights in licking her face nonstop, presumably because Kassidi cracks up. As soon as we tell him "no" or "leave it" and he goes away from her, Kassidi will call him back with little kiss noises and the process will start all over again. Both he and she love it. Leo bonded with me right from the start. It's as if he knew how much I loved him even though we had just met. He follows me from room to room and acts as if I've been gone for a year even if I was gone for only a minute. He is a perfect gentleman. He's slept in my bed from the first and doesn't even hog it (too much). In puppy class, Leo seems more mature than the other puppies, if that's possible. He will play for a few minutes, calmly and casually assert his dominance by resting his forearms on their backs, then sit on the side and just observe. Of course, that was the day we went to a state park and Leo ran the doggie equivalent of the Boston Marathon so he might have been a bit tired by the time puppy classes rolled around. Still, he is nowhere near as hyper as lab puppies and what a relief after seeing three of my friends and relatives struggle with them for years before they calmed down! Leo isn't hyper in the slightest. It's as if he knows appropriate house manners because he is calm inside and perky and energetic when out. We're working on heel right now and he's nearly got it. Every now and again I have to remind him not to pull on the leash. I do that by stopping completely and letting him walk to the end of the leash. By then he realizes that I'm not with him and will look back as if to say, "Come on, catch up! I can smell something just up ahead!" When I just stay in place he usually knows to walk back to me and then we'll continue on our walk. For a three month-old puppy, that is impressive! When we're in a busier section of town or among a lot of other people, he isn't the best with heal but that is more than expected. I can't believe how much I lucked out in getting this incredible pup. My boyfriend wants to get a female Aussie from Theresa in a year but he's afraid that Leo's spoiled him forever because of his great nature. I'm afraid that Leo's spoiled me forever as well. How many other puppies do you know that are so well-socialized that they can make even the most well-behaved older dog look like a mongrel in how he interacts with children, adults, elderly, and even other cats and dogs?! Theresa herself has spoiled me because I can't imagine any other breeder that would talk to me for hours in order to calm me down when I'm struk with guilt at leaving my puppy in a crate while I'm at work. How many other breeders make sure their pups are a part of their family from the start? How many other breeders know the personality of their puppies so well as to place each pup in the perfect home? Not many, if you ask me. All I can say is thanks and that one word will never adequately express the depth of gratitude I feel towards Theresa for bringing this little human covered in fur into my life!"
~ Danielle, NE
| "After losing our Buster in March "06" (German Shepherd Husky Mix) who was 15 yrs old, my husband (John) and I were very mixed about getting another dog as the heartache was much to handle and then in May John lost his Mom and in June I lost my Dad. To keep my mind occupied during this difficult time I often went on puppy sites online just to get a smile. Not even sure of which breed to look at... After looking at several breeds I thought the Australian Shepherds were very unique (not knowing anything about them). Next thing you know, I was only looking for this breed. The search was on! I looked at several and even tried to adopt a few but they were always taken (and now I'm glad they were) when I would finally send them an email. A little discouraged I gave up the search for a little while. Sure enough when the search began again, there she was "My Loni Girl" as soon as I saw her I knew she was the one. A beautiful little black & white puppy that looked like a polar bear. She had to be mine! I sent an e-mail to Theresa at Desert Willow Aussies and I rec'd an e-mail right back... We talked on the phone the next day about her and if she would be a good match for us. After much conversation Theresa and I agreed that she would be perfect. Theresa and I talked several times after that arranging shipment. I was a little leary of shipping her from New Mexico to Buffalo but Theresa assured me everything would be just fine. Sure enough when I picked her up on July 2nd at the Airport she was just fine. Her little face looking at me as to say "Here I am, I will bring you much joy" and that she does :)
I cannot express my thanks to Theresa and her family enough. She is a very special person who goes out of her way to make someone else happy. She has been there every step of the way with me from advice on feeding to create training. She genuinely cares about her pups as well as the family they are going to. I am so happy I was as fortunate as I was to come across "Desert Willow Aussies". I feel I have also found a new friend in Theresa who I feel like I have known forever." Thank-you Theresa,Your Friend,
~ Mary Beth, Niagara Falls, NewYork (This is a 3/4 Aussie 1/4 Heeler Pup)
My Daughter Marissa and I just can't thank you enough for Newt, the wonder puppy! He is sweet, and likes to cuddle in our laps and play or chew on a toy and yet he boldly runs after and herds up our 7 year old Aussie, Peso, who is very happy to have a new buddy that she can run and play with!
With Newt, begins a story of faith and of God’s love for us. I lost my first Aussie, the sweetest boy on January 4, 2007 due to a status epilepticus (series of seizures) that took him home to be with the Lord. A few days prior to his death, Sam was greeting me in the morning and I felt an inner voice telling me that Sam is going to die very soon. As I looked at his beautiful almond shaped eyes and his sweet markings and the little patch he had on his left eye, I soaked up all the beauty in that face that I had grown to love so much. That same voice asked me, “What if there were no markings – just a blank canvas?” I thought, that would not be Sam and the voice prompted me to look deeper and see the heart. Sam died a few days later and as I was with him along with the nurse who lives next door, I saw him take his last stretch as he jumped over the rainbow bridge. I was surprised when I actually saw little clouds emanating from his head upwards towards heaven! I knew he was safe with the Lord and it suddenly gave me great comfort. We still missed Sam and my daughter and I knew we would be looking for another male Aussie to keep us company in a few months.
I looked at many different Aussie's on line but did not see the white face with no markings until one day at the end of March, I was presented with a picture of 2 hands holding a little baby puppy with a white face and 1 black ear (and 1 white ear). Newt, (named after Newt Dobbs in Lonesome Dove) caught my attention right away as I remembered the words, “a face with no markings at all” last December.
I was very drawn to this little puppy that looked so brand new and like a "noodle" as I was seeing his ONE day old pictures. The problem was, I had all ready put a deposit on a puppy that was not yet born – due in April. When I called about the puppy, Theresa assured me that he would be of sound structure and nice features with a wonderful laid back disposition, like his daddy, Earl, and he was just miss-marked (the blank canvas?)
A few weeks passed and I still thought about this puppy, remembering the blank canvas face that I was told about. I contacted Theresa again concerning this boy with the white face and asked about Newt and “T” showed me new pictures at about 6 weeks. Newt had grown into a little bigger boy! I asked if he had a home yet and she said he may be available, she'd check with another person who was interested in him. I was also very drawn to Theresa as I could hear the love in her voice as she grew excited about the prospect of Newt having a home with someone truly interested in him and his uniqueness. When I learned he was available, and I happily decided to take him and later had confirmation from the Lord that “He is the one for you!” from that small inner voice who first prompted me that I should look for a puppy with no markings, one who has a big heart!
I later realized that all of this happened before Newt was even conceived by Earl and Jubileena? God had a plan before he was even born! Thank you, Theresa! This has truly been a blessed experience! We have since had so many compliments on this boy and he has adapted well to our lives and enjoys his new home and doggy girl friend very much. We also have a "new friend" (a fellow Desert Willow Parent) who has taken home Newt’s brother, Laddie who lives near by. The Lord has truly blessed us with this special puppy, (1 in a million) with a big heart (My "Blank Canvas") and I have a new friend! Laddie (Newt’s brother) and his Mom Joan who is awesome (very close by), not to mention the wonderful new friend we have in “T” (Theresa) who has helped us immensely through this adoption process!
Joan Kraft - Encino, CA
September 26th, 2006 was one of the saddest days of my life. It was the day I lost my very best friend Cookie who was almost 9 years old. We did everything together and she was my shadow, my friend and suddenly she was just gone.
Still heartbroken a month or so after her loss, I began to search for another dog, because I wanted to fill some of that emptiness inside, but searching on the Internet led to more heart ache. Many of nights after viewing puppy pictures, I ended up with a massive headache or I would just cry with frustration. So many of the puppies that I was interested in would turn out to be a hoax which hurt even more, further hurting my hope in finding a new puppy to love. Also, people on the Internet would not give me the information until I paid a monthly sign up fee to view the breeders information which makes it even more disheartening. I knew we wanted an Australian Shepherd puppy, and I wanted one with a tail! Our family loves the wagging tail and we love Aussie's, so our desire was to have both again. So after calling some local breeders and reading Australian Shepherd dog books, I began to realize that there were not very many breeders (if any) who would be willing to accommodate my desire of a tail on my Aussie. At this point I was about to give up (and just sick of getting my hopes crushed), when I decided to call Theresa. I ran across her website on the Internet and something inside told me to try once more. I'm so glad I did because I called and left a message and she promptly called back! I was so excited that I found such a great breeder and person. And honestly at first I did think it was too good to be true, but when all was said and done (even with a few hiccups in the road) Theresa came through for me and I know it wasn't easy to set me up with an Aussie with a tail, but she did!
When speaking with this man, the first odd thing was his unwillingness to answer my questions concerning the dogs health, along with miscellaneous questions. Ignoring these warning signs (because of my determination to have a puppy right away) and he was a local breeder with puppies to hold on premises, he then stated the puppies were 800.00 while with him on the phone (and they had tails) oh great just what I'm looking for (I thought). So I went over to see the litter and he raised the price went up to 1,000.00 because he saw my excitement of the tails (and still I was tempted). He then confessed that a couple of the pups there had the double "M" gene with way too much white. I asked to met the parents of this litter and noticed they were both very "WHITE" blue Merles. The breeder then proceeded to share that a few of the puppies were born as "LEATHEL WHITES" and had to be put down. Now worried, I called my vet and was told that breeding two Merles together is dangerous (poor puppies) and should never be done! He was direct in telling us not to deal with this man! So we walked away worried about those poor puppies and what would become of them.
So I picked up the phone and called Theresa again (who by the way, kindly took me back never showing any hard feelings for my brief departure). You know, It ended up that the only reason I tried to go with a local breeder is because Desert Willow Aussie's is across the country from us! And my desire to have a puppy that moment and the Desert Willow litter was still 3 months from being born, none of which mattered in the end because the puppies arrived and are healthy and beautiful and shipped without one problem! That is why "Hind Sight" is always 20/20!
Sharon - Middlebury, CT
Theresa, just a quick note to thank you for such a wonderful dog! We call her Reatta and she has matured into a beautiful Aussie (perfect size). She's also turned out to be a great "COW DOG"! My husband and I own and operate a 25, 000 acre working cattle and horse ranch, we don't have any employees so we relay on our Australian Shepherd to help us gather and move cattle. Reatta loves her job! When it come to herding cattle she has endless energy, is agile quick to learn commands and she's very cowy! She has never quit on tough brushy cattle and will stay on them until she get's them moving in the right direction. I can't tell you how many times she helped us gather cattle and move them 10 or more miles! When we get them back to headquarters she still willing and happy to help with the sorting and branding. Reatta is also a great family dog, she loves our youngest son and will follow him where ever he goes! She love to play fetch and is very sweet and loyal, and she has a HUGE doggie smile (like her mama Omega) and crosses her legs (Like her daddy Kodiak) when she lays down. You have a lovely Kennel and all your dogs are so well cared for. I would not hesitate to refer you to anyone looking for a quality Aussie. Thanks again, and my family and I love REATTA!
The Boyd's - Mountainair, New Mexico
I just want to THANK the Desert Willow family for our wonderful Belle. We couldn't be happier!! Belle is definitely the "Belle of the Ball". She is perfect for our go-go goof ball life-style life. She fits in perfect.
I must say I was very skeptical of looking for a dog over the Internet but it was a wonderful journey. I had spent hours on the Internet searching, reading and looking for the right puppy/situation for us. I had looked at thousands of puppies, breeders and sites (according to my husband) and kept going back to Desert Willow. After checking out Theresa's website and looking/reading it several times I kept going back to the "litters" page. At the very bottom of the page there's the Breeders with a captial B. Well, I was sold after reading this. I thought to myself...she is my kind of person if she believes this and this is the Breeder for me.
I filled out the application and to my surprise she called me the next morning. She told me of all her dogs and their personalities. I could tell she loved them all very much and spends lots of time with them. I was so excited!! During Gracie's, Jubileena's and Omega's pregnancy we were updated and picturess were sent. How exciting this was. Then once the pups were born, she picked out the pup and checked to see if it was a match with us. This was another thing I was skeptical about....Theresa doesn't know us...how could she pick out a pup that is right for us? I must say..I couldn't have picked a better pup, Belle is perfect for us. I don't know how she did it or if all her pups are just this way, but Belle is just right!!
From then on we were sent pictures and updated regularly. We definitely bonded. Couldn't wait. The first week that we had Belle I was just in awe. She was everything and more. And since our first week she just continues to amaze me. She is so laid back and is not afraid of anything. She has rode the 4 wheeler, gone to school, gone to ball games, played at the lake, jumped on the tramp, played peace maker between Cole and AdreAnna and to my surprise...when I was on horseback she tried following me to round up some cattle. I was totally shocked of her willingness and interest in the cattle. Since then, we have been working with our 4-H sheep and she definitely shows interest and wants to help whenever she can. Whatda pup!!
I can not thank Theresa and her family enough. They have been so wonderful from the very beginning and it is wonderful to be part of their extended Desert Willow family.
(Thank you for everything..... and I'm so bummed that I won't be able to join the Desert Willow Aussie's picnic. That is just the COOLEST idea and how FUN!! I hope there will be another one in the future because I would do my best to be there!!). Love to all your family,
To whom this may concern,
After having learned the importance of breeding & genetics in quality dogs in our last two dogs, those were again the essential issues in our investigation of breeders for Australian Shepherds recently.
Our quest initially revealed that a dog of the breeding & quality we were searching for was apparently not available in our region (or in the sites I visited on the Internet) and the search then lead me to Desert Willow Aussies and a wonderful person named Theresa.
Despite that I now realize must be a mind-numbing schedule; Theresa answered all my initial emails the same afternoon and started what has become a wonderful cross-country working relationship & friendship from the night of our fist phone call informing us of our impending parenthood, despite living across the country. Also, through the Website, E-mails, and Pictures we were able to watch our baby girl (formerly Peach Johnson in her wilder days) grow up and receive valuable information to prepare her family (us) for her arrival!
The pre-transportation communications were fantastic and last minute information further added Abbee's transition. Due to Theresa's efforts (and the Continental Airlines Pet Safe Staff) Abbee's travel day went extremely well and her arrival was a wonderful “family event” with all of us getting kisses from this lovable puppy who was even more beautiful then the pictures could portray.
Our dog (from Desert Willow Aussie's) is also even more intelligent than I had hoped for, we have (in a short period of time) been able to train her in the basic commands while house-training her and simultaneously adopting her to a schedule and lifestyle of two full time working individuals, all in a puppy who has the most wonderful disposition, and has quickly developed on individualized, but loving and devoted relationship with each of us. Now, while I credit breeding and genetics with the fist two issues/successes, Theresa and her family are primarily responsible for the third!
In preparing for Abbee's arrival, I read extensively and ALL of the books emphasized the critical aspect of the care and socialization of puppies in the weeks prior to their arrival into a permanent home and the indicators of the care a puppy had received before arriving. Our experience with Abbee has shown Theresa did an OUTSTANDING job of laying the excellent foundation forms to build on and up to the day before Abbee's arrival, Theresa provided information specific to Abbee and her behaviors which further improved her transition into her new home with us.
In closing, It has been our experience in dealing with Theresa and Desert Willow Aussies that she is dedicated to her dogs and business, by my experience has exceeded all breeder standards in all areas, yet while maintaining a family atmosphere and providing valuable assistance and information before and after the arrival of a "PUPPY", AND she gifted us with a dog exceeding our hopes and prayers! I could only respond with saying that I can provide my highest recommendations for my experience with Desert Willow Aussies & Theresa.
Ed & Jayne - Duluth, MN
First of all I would like to say to Theresa. Thank you very much, for all your patience with us. Now that we have been with “Max” for a while and enjoying him and get to meet him I realize that I am so grateful for finding Desert Willow Aussie's (Theresa) I wanted to thank you so much for all your time and dedication on helping us to pick up our handsome boy.
I haven't be able to have the company of man’s best friend since I left my country 1992, I am a dog lover I just believe they are the best friend a man can have and they are the most pleasing animals I have ever meet in my life. For many years my daughter Ambar who is now sixteen keeps asking me for a puppy to raise and I always found myself either too busy or not with enough money and time to have one.
I believe everybody has a reason why to bring a dog into their life. Mine was to have a playful intelligent and loyal friend and to give my kids what they always wanted to have, a “puppy” to raise because there is always a reward when you get one of these little creatures that some people call “dogs”, I call them “human lifetime companions and best friends”, and I believe this is because the good memories I have with my dogs back in my country. Dogs are our best friends, and no matter how down and miserable we feel, they are always there to please us and make us feel that we are important. “AND WE TRULLY ARE FOR THEM.” doesn't matter if you are poor or rich, they are your best friend. This could be a good idea for a breeder to put on the contracts, no? “For poorer and for richness” LOL. No kidding! They are as loyal as they can be! Not a doubt.
So I start doing what we call “shopping around” but then I start thinking which kind of dog do I want to get do I want a dog similar to the one I had back in my country? So I looked at a lot of pictures and my eyes came across this kind of breed (Australian Shepherd). I looked up the name and found out that their breed is ‘Australian Shepherd’. not being familiar with names in English, I looked in the dictionary to see what “shepherd” means and I found that in Spanish it means “Pastor” I couldn't believe that the dog I was raised with it had the same breeder name in Spanish “Pastor” he was a German Shepherd (MIX) he looked just like a Australian shepherd. Now that I know this breed, I started navigating through all kinds of breeder websites. I did not see any that I liked or called my attention. I mean the puppies look beautiful and all, but I just needed something to tell me more than selling me a pup. So I expend about six months doing my research when I finally found this website, sort of a site for placing advertising on all kinds of dogs for sale, including puppies. I looked at most of the breeders advertising on this place and it took me a while, but almost at the end of my research I saw “Desert Willow Aussies” and I remember I loved the introduction they have posted, so that motivate me to go further and click on their website. When I opened the link, I just fall in love with this website. It was so warm and beautifully created with love. That was my first thought.
There was so much to see and so much to learn. I wanted to read it all right away. The more I read the more I wanted to keep reading and get more information. I was clicking all over the place and I found it so interesting, not even a little spot turned me off. And the dogs and puppies they just added more enthusiasm to me to keep reading.
I love the story of Theresa on how she start her business which is more her passion for this kind of breed. No wonder you can feel through her website, her love and passion for these intelligent animals.
I have this website marked as one of my “favorite places” and I wanted to keep traveling around in there, because I am not done yet! I don’t think I will be soon!
I am amazed when people turn out such marvelous websites for us to wonder in. LOVE IT!!!
I filled out an application and I just couldn’t wait, I told my husband that we need to call them I was so nervous and anxious because that was a big step for us specially when you have children and know all the responsibilities on bringing a puppy home. I was afraid of not getting qualified from them, so I let my husband do the talking and found out everything. I remember telling my husband “please you got to tell them that we “DO” have a backyard”. LOL. I remember it was the next day after I filled out the application. I just couldn’t wait to talk with Theresa. When we spoke to her I told my husband how confident I was feeling about getting the puppy from her. She was very nice and professional. I really can see that she really cares about her puppies and for that I knew she will give us a good healthy dog. So after that day, it has been like a journey. Theresa has always been in touch, letting us know from day one that she will breed Gracie with spirit and then she told us that she decide breed Gracie with Isaac and that she will take her to Arizona, and assured us if we don’t find what we want in Gracie’s litter, she will move us to the first place on the next litter. ‘Very nice’ of her. She started keeping us informed about everything regarding Gracie’s pregnancy and of course until the puppies where born. Sharing with us what she knows in taking care and getting ready for our beautiful puppy. She also sent us videos and pictures when our puppy was just days old. She is just an amazing person who likes to amaze people on the way she conducts her business. “Sometimes I wonder if it is true that when you are in the right pack doing what you're supposed to do like following your heart, the dark side always came and tent you”. After we made the deal and send off the deposit, my husband found a five week old purebred ‘black Labrador’ in the street. So beautiful and full of fur, that we were looking each other thinking, ooppss! Now what? Two dogs? Because there is no way I said to myself I will give up my Australian Shepherd plus Teresa has been sooooo nice to us. My husband and I both agreed that the pup will stay until somebody responds to our flyers that hung on the street saying we found a puppy. After one day or two days, no one had responded, so my husband found for him a nice home with one of his coworkers. So here came the BIG DAY!! I will always remember the day we all went to get Max in Arizona, the place we were meeting Teresa to give us our precious puppy. That was so exciting for the first time to have my little boy in my arms and have the pleasure of meeting Theresa, and also her friends Debbie and Larry, who is the Master of my puppy’s father. Once again, Theresa has been a great person. She has been with us all this time making us fell so important and loved and continuously giving us surprise after surprise. I believe I have a terrific dog I think the time we spent was worthy, and Theresa made a good judgment when she picked Humphrey Bogart (Max) for us. Max is a very intelligent dog, easy to train. He is so willing to please, and he loves socialize. And he is so cute!!! At the vet’s office, people lined up to see him. That day on our way home, we stopped at Home Depot and the same thing happened. People lined up to see him. Everybody kept saying “what a beautiful puppy” This is wonderful. I am so proud of him. I want to make sure he gets the best training in Las Vegas. In fact we already have the best agility and obedience trainers in Las Vegas. We are just waiting for the right time to start his formal training. He is registered for both classes.
Max is such a good dog, that he spent only one night (his first night), getting up three times. Now he sleeps all night and when I open his cage in the morning, which is place in my room, and tell him “MAX! Let’s go! HURRY UP”. He looks at me, and gets out, and goes downstairs running by the time he gets there. I am already with the door open for him. Then he goes to his favorite spot and does his thing. He doesn't get distract, not once. He sleeps through the night, eats well, loves to exercise, waits for me to get up and go outside to play with him, and loves his brother and sisters, and also his new dad (Master David). He does very good agility exercise lessons (soft) to prepare him before he start his formal agility training. I have setup a small obstacle course in my backyard and he loves climbing and going through the tunnel. Also, I started puppy kindergarten for him before he starts his formal obedience classes. I wanted him to see me as his trainer and Master so he can obey me and the other person as his instructor which is the reason I am introducing him early to lessons. We have so many plans and goals with Max and I am so confident that some day he will make us all proud of him, but for now we just want to have fun with our puppy! I have been reading many books since I made this commitment to have a puppy, and I can tell Max comes from a good bloodline, but also he came from a good breeder. You don't need to read many books to know what is so obvious in my daily interaction with him. I feel and notice that he is willing to please and willing to learn and he loves to play games with his Mama trainer which makes it easy to train him and he is a quick learner. I'm just so thankful! As with so much confidence knowing that we have his grandma Theresa in New Mexico who supports us and wants to be part of our life, raising this little person full of fur, because that is what Max is for, us just another member of the family.
To Theresa and her family in a way to said thank you…. For your kindness and have us as part of your extended family of Desert Willows.
Josefina, David & Family - Las Vegas, Nevada
My Tuesday Weld...
I just love her and just knew when I saw the web page of Desert Willow Aussie's I had to have one. I have wanted an Aussie for a long time, but really didn't know that much about the breed. Theresa was wonderful educating me on the breed and I felt like it was a great breed for me since I am so active too. I do have a horse but once I got Tuesday the woman told me where I keep Sammie (my horse) that she couldn't take a risk with another dog being brought out to the barn due to her home insurance restrictions. I was disappointed to say the least. I am hoping to take her out maybe when she gets a little bigger and walk her around on a leash and let her meet her dogs. She said she has one dog that has already killed another dog. oh dear I said so I don't know. I want her around my horse though, so I am not sure what will happen there. we will see.
Tuesday and I have been in a puppy class now for 4 weeks and she is doing so well except that she pooped the last 2 times in pet smart while we were there. that's ok. she just didn't get enough time before we went in to class. we were running late. she is responding well to the instruction!!! she is sitting, staying, and down also. We just started on the walking and not pulling this past Saturday so we need to work on that a lot. That's hard to get them to heal . I think she will do well though if I keep at it. I have been told she would be great at agility and then I met a man that said he would handle her for showing . he has handled Aussie's before and done very well. got Champion on one of the dogs he handled. everyone at Petsmart has a fit over Tuesday. I am so proud of her and I think she kind of likes me too.:)))) I pick her up and just love her probably too much because she is very dominant and wants to be in control so I have to restrain myself from spoiling her too much. she is bossy and likes to talk back but she has already improved a lot with that too. she absolutely loves our springer spaniel bandit !! they get along great!
I try to take her with me everywhere but now its getting too hot and I can't leave her in the car. I took her to eat outside yesterday with my sister and her 12 year old who loves her too and we met the cutest 9 week old pup there and they got along well too. it was fun to watch them play. I need to get a card to begin going to the doggy park next week. She hasn't gotten the rabies yet so the vet told me to wait. Oh and she has a pool in the back yard she loves and plays in with bandit and her toys. She is so cute and absolutely loves the water.
Thanks again for this wonderful ball of fur and entertainment and joy she has brought me already! I am so lucky to have her and can't wait to get home from work every night to take her for her midnight walk with Bandit , Jasper and Kyla my 2 cats. She is too funny to watch with the cats too! She so much wants to play with them but you know how that goes. She constantly is herding them and they tolerate her so well. my male cat just ignores her and isn't bothered by her at all.
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