THE SECRET TO GOOD DOGS ARE GOOD OWNERS
Over the years it has been our pleasure to meet a multitude of great people who have provided wonderful homes to our dogs. These people have been essential in developing the genetic potential inherent in these wonderful dogs. While it is always risky to mention names, some of those who have had a great impact on our breeding program are: Gunther Rahnefeld, Lyman Turner, Al Mckean, and Ray Koskinen who are all deceased. We would also be remiss if we did not mention Marcy Wright(Darbi and Mikka) and husband Kenny Trott who continue to have a great influence on our breeding program. Tom and Marg Murray have been good friends and have given great opportunities to Mike, Briar and Nick three of our pups. Corky and Marcia Krollman and their children Todd and Kristen have become great friends of ours in addition to buying our dogs.
We are a small family-run kennel currently located in Townsend, Montana although we originally were in Picture Butte, Alberta. We first began breeding and training dogs in 1975 in Picture Butte. We moved to Saskatchewan in 1980 to attend Graduate School at the University of Regina and then work for Wildlife Branch of Saskatchewan Parks and Renewable Resources for 10 years at which time we moved back to Picture Butte. It was at this time that we really became serious about our breeding program. Then in 2008 Revilo Kennels moved to Townsend, Montana. We took a five year hiatus from breeding but began breeding again in 2013. We still love hunting and training dogs with three generations of Oliver's being in the mix now.
We originally became interested in dogs because of our love for hunting waterfowl and upland birds. When struggling to make the decision which breed would be best suited to our type of hunting I came across an add in the local paper for a six month old female Labrador for a price that a poor struggling university student could afford. Turns out an older couple had purchased her as a pup and could not handle her busyness. With a copy of James Lamb Free's book in hand we began to train her and she developed into a very fine retriever. She was well bred and had a great pedigree so I decided to breed her. The rest as they say is history.
Our original goal was to breed dogs that would be exceptional retrievers while hunting but would also fill the roll as family pet/companion dog during the rest of the year. We found Labradors were well suited to these rolls and just about anything else you want them to do. We have sold dogs for drug detection, Search and Rescue, currency detection, gas line inspection and many other uses.
As we became more involved we soon determined that the rigors of Licensed Field Trials provided an excellent selective process for insuring traits that we wanted our dogs to possess. The degree of training and the physical and mental attributes required to attain success in licensed field trials require unsurpassed levels of performance. Hence are association with that sport was nurtured.
One day while visiting with Gunther Rahnefeld at his home in Brandon, Manitoba, Canada. I said it was my goal to breed at dog just like his great dog NFTCH FTCH AFTCH Call Me Mister Independence (Spook). His response was to turn and face me and while poking me in the chest with his right index finger told me in terms that even I could understand that my responsibility as a dog breeder was to breed better dogs than Spook.
That made me stop and think. Labradors are the most popular breed in North America. There are lots of them and in all honesty the last thing the world needs is more Labradors just to have them. If we can't improve the breed we have no right breeding more dogs. Gunther was a Genetics Researcher by profession and was a great mentor to me. My own academic background as a biologist has provided an understanding of genetics as well so there is much research and thought that goes into each litter we produce here at Revilo Kennels.
In our breeding program we value intelligence and soundness coupled with an impeccable temperament suited to whatever roll the new owner has in mind for the dog. We have had dogs attain their field trial championship under the tutelage of people in their mid-80's, we have had dogs compete successfully at the master level of hunt tests handled by a ten year old, we have many many dogs who serve as loving companions for people of all ages and walks of life. To see the smiles and hear the accounts of people as they enjoy their canine companions is the measure of our success as breeders.