The EUKANUBA™ Ambassador team is comprised of professional and ethical dog breeders and dog sports competitors from all around Australia.
Kate & John Valk, KHAYOZ Kennels
Kate began her love affair with Border Collies when she was a teenager. After much nagging to her parents, they let her take on Kelly, a rehomed Border Collie, who she trained and trialled in obedience. Kate sums up the breed as the perfect combination of beauty and brains! John’s first dog was a Rottweiler called Ben who was purchased as a family pet. Ben’s breeder gave John some encouragement to venture into the show-ring and the pair found much success, which began John on his show career.
In 1991, John and Kate met through their mutual interest in dog showing and Khayoz Border Collies was born. The following year, their foundation bitch Champion Lindenbrae Tarfin Louisa CDX, whelped her first litter to the very handsome Champion Maghera Crystal Rythem and six boys were born. The irony of this is that Kate wanted a bitch to continue on with in obedience so she sold the entire litter. The sale of one boy fell through and John insisted they at least "run him on" until they had another litter. This boy went on to become Grand Champion Khayoz Soul Deep UD AD- the most amazing dog they could ever hope for! Jack took Kate and John on a journey in both the show & obedience rings that they will never forget. With many Best In Show and Best In Trial wins, they proved that a top show dog can also be a top trialling dog. John and Kate have a second love, the Whippet breed and believe that you should never compromise on quality and temperament.
John says “How a dog performs on show day is only the tip of the iceberg. It takes 24/7 commitment to ensure each dog receives the correct nutrition, exercise and attention. We are proud to be EUKANUBA™ Ambassadors as dogs are a product of what is put into them, and we hope there are many successful years ahead with this winning formula!”
Kerry Hutt & Geoff Love, WYLDCHASE Kennels
Kerry and Geoff are a wealth of knowledge on all things canine. Their illustrious dog showing career began with English Cocker Spaniels in the 1970’s and they still exhibit this breed with much success today. In 1978, Geoff also became involved with his second love, the Whippet hound, and Kerry followed suit in 1994.
During Geoff’s outstanding career he has campaigned 34 Best In Show winning Cocker Spaniels as well as Best In Show winning Smooth Fox Terriers, Chihuahuas, Dalmatians and Whippets. Kerry has bred and shown many Best In Show winning Cocker Spaniels and Whippets. She also runs a successful dog grooming salon.
Memorable career highlights to date:
- Winning Best In Show Sydney Royal 1982 with Cocker Spaniel Champion Lehearn Lovemn Leavem
- Winning the English Cocker Spaniel National in 1992 with Champion Camdach Keep Em Talking
- Breeding and co-owning Australia’s most successful solid coloured show Cocker Spaniel Grand Champion Kebarlea Cold Gold
- Owning & exhibiting the Top Whippet in South Australia for the past 11 years
EUKANUBA™ will play a vital role in conditioning Geoff & Kerry’s breeding and show team. Geoff says “With its balanced nutrition EUKANUBA™ will support our breeding stock and prepare our show team for maximum performance. Our puppy buyers and grooming clients will learn about the benefits of EUKANUBA™ and how it can assist their dog, whether it be for the show-ring or as a companion.”
New South Wales
Kurt Morton, VLADIMIR Kennels
Kurt was born into a family passionate about breeding and showing German Shepherds. His parents have held the kennel prefix of ‘Vladimir’ since the early 80’s and his involvement began via Junior Showmanship competitions. This enabled an exciting childhood full of travel and Kurt has now become a Junior Showmanship judge and advocate, achieving many accolades in the dog ring.
His most notable owner/breeder/handler wins, have been lead in hand with Australian Supreme Champion Vladimir Anarchy E.T. “Annie”. To date, she is the only Supreme Champion German Shepherd to win a National and Best In Show title in both All breeds and Specialist arenas. She is noted as one of Australia’s best show bitches and has bred four National winning progeny from four litters, producing a current total of 14 Specialist winners and four Best In Show winners. Annie’s achievements represent a model of consistency and in 2013, team Vladimir took out the National German Shepherd Dog Council of Australia Breeders team award. Vladimir have also been awarded the silver and bronze medal for soundness in their breeding. This is an amazing achievement for such a small, yet fastidious breeding program.
Kurt feels blessed to have grown up with these outstanding dogs and to have seen five Best In Show winners across three generations. He says “Great health starts with great nutrition. It is imperative to give our dogs the best start in life and to keep them at their peak. Great nutrition means high quality ingredients that provide essential nutrients for health and vitality. Great nutrition means EUKANUBA™!”
New South Wales
Andrew, Lisa & Caleb Gersbach, IDIGADOG Kennels
Andrew, Lisa & Caleb’s journey into the sport of sled dog racing began in 1996 when they welcomed two Alaskan Malamutes into their home. The Canberra Sled Dog Club had been newly formed and after being invited to go to a training run they were immediately hooked!
Andrew, with his team of Aspen and Dakota, achieved what most Alaskan Malamute teams can only dream of. Undefeated in their class for five years, Idigadog’s reputation and success became renowned Australia wide. They remain the only Malamute team to have won the prestigious Altitude 5000 Sled Dog Race which earnt them the respect of Australia's finest mushers. Since then, 11 more Siberian boys have joined their racing family as well as their first Canadian import.
Andrew has race marshalled around Australia and New Zealand. In addition, both Andrew and Lisa have marshalled and judged in the US and handled in Alaska and Canada for Iditarod and Yukon Quest mushers.
Andrew has been the President of the Canberra Sled Dog Club for numerous years as well as Vice President/Race Co-ordinator and the longest serving President of the Australian Sled Dog Sports Association.
Lisa says “The Idigadog boys have been very fortunate to have had EUKANUBA™ sponsoring them for quite a number of years and I have no doubt that the quality of the food has contributed a great deal to the fantastic race results our dogs have achieved.”
New South Wales
Lyn Brand, BRANBERN Kennels
Lyn’s experience as a breeder spans over four decades. Initially a breeder of Labradors, Lyn then began specialising in Bernese Mountain Dogs by importing top quality lines from the UK, Sweden and the USA. Her first Best In Show winning Bernese Mountain Dog was Champion Millwire Clockwork Soldier (IMP UK).
Lyn established Branbern Kennels to help develop the Bernese Mountain Dog breed in Australia. Her list of outstanding achievements include:
- Breeder of over 50 Australian Champion Bernese Mountain Dogs, including Obedience and Tracking Dogs, and USA and UK Bred Champion Dogs exported from Australia
- Being the first in Australia to achieve a Best In Show All Breeds win with a Bernese Mountain Dog, the Champion Millwire Clockwork Soldier (Imp UK)
- Breeding the first Australian Grand Champion Bernese Mountain Dog, the AUST Grand Champion Branbern Abbeys Echo
- Lyn is the only Bernese Mountain Dog Breeder in Australia to breed the Best Of Breed winner at the highly prestigious dog show Crufts in the UK, with UK AUST Champion Branbern Special Knight
Lyn is a licenced International All Breeds Judge and a licenced Novice Obedience Judge and was very honoured to judge the 2013 Bernese Mountain Dog Club Specialty in Sweden. Lyn has also worked as a Veterinary Nurse for over 18 years, and is a member of the NSW Hereditary Diseases Committee. Lyn's kennels are world renowned and highly respected for her breeding programme that is dedicated to improving soundness in this magnificent breed.
Lyn says “While nutrition is important for all breeds, it is especially important for a large, active breed like mine. My dogs have thrived on the compete nutrition offered by EUKANUBA™. I highly recommend it for anyone wanting the best for their dog.”
New South Wales
Melissa Burton, COLTAVA Kennels
Melissa was born into the dog world. She has been breeding and exhibiting Siberian Huskies under the Coltava prefix since 1999, in both the Hunter Region and more recently the Wagga/Albury area. She has owned, bred and handled both All Breeds Best In Show and Speciality Best In Show winning Siberians. Melissa regularly travels to the National Breed Show in the USA, to expand her international network of like-minded breeders as well as to improve her own breeding program and further the development of the breed in Australia. She holds a committee position on the NSW Siberian Husky Club and began her judge’s training in 2015. She is currently a trainee judge for Utility in NSW, as well as a Junior Handler judge.
Melissa is pictured with her home bred MBIS Supreme Champion Coltava Dreams N Schemes 'Envy' as a baby. This bitch has made her enormously proud both in and out of the show ring. "Envy" is now retired, and will commence a new role this year - as a pet education dog in schools & preschools. This is also an exciting new role for Melissa, as she sees it as another great opportunity to discuss the benefits of feeding EUKANUBA™.
Melissa says “The Siberian Husky is an extraordinary breed and requires extraordinary nutrition. We have found that EUKANUBA™ formulas with their high quality animal protein and optimal level of Omega Fatty Acids have our dogs efficiently fuelled and in show ready condition!”
Vicki Shaw, SHAWTHING Kennels
It was Vicky’s mum who instilled in her a passion for dogs. She remembers as a child, watching her mum’s Curly Coated Retriever deliver a litter of 13 puppies. Vicki was so touched by the miracle of it all that she cried, and knew that like her mum, she too wanted a life around animals.
In the early 1980’s, she developed a keen interest in dog obedience trialling and proudly took her two Curly Coated Retrievers to their CD and CDX obedience titles. By the late 1990’s, Vicki became interested in the Boxer breed and with the help of some very experienced breeders and friends she had great success with them. Around this time, Vicki’s mum had Hungarian Vizslas and French Bulldogs, and Vicki delighted in showing these breeds, winning many group and in show awards.
In 2002, Vicki acquired her first Whippet and fell madly in love. While she has achieved many Specialty and Royal Best In Show awards with her dogs, her most memorable win has been taking out the QLD Dog of the Year award with her homebred Whippet Supreme Champion Shaw Thing All That Jazz.
Vicki is actively involved in sharing her mum’s passion for French Bulldogs and says that seeing her mum’s face when their breeding takes out top honours is reward in itself. Vicki says “I look forward to my role as a EUKANUBA™ Ambassador and helping others learn about this great brand, on which my show team thrives.”