Irish Wolfhound Breeder
How It All Began
Let's start by introducing ourselves. We are Dwayne and Kathi Yorke and our home is in Southgate Ontario. Our journey to become Irish Wolfhound Breeders all began in 1995 when we fell in love with this breed of sighthounds.
Our prior love of dogs started when my husband Dwayne and I were kids growing up in the suburbs of Toronto, Ontario. Having family dogs while growing made us feel complete. Between the ages of 8 & 12 years old I delivered the early morning tabloid, The Globe and Mail. My brother had a route as well with twice as many customers and further away from home but he was always ahead of me in returning home each morning. One day when my father went around with me on my route, he observed that I knew just about every dog along the way and asked me how I knew so much about them, to which I replied that I talked to them every morning while delivering newspapers. Ahhhhh he said... now I know why you are never home in the mornings before your brother... it's because you are out making friends with all the neighbourhood dogs. It was the highlight of my day back then. My canine friends never barked at me unless I was in a hurry and paid them no heed and then I would apologize to them as I scurried by.
The first time I met Dwayne, was in Bramalea, Ontario. He was out on his front lawn playing with a beautiful large collie shepherd mixed breed, Tinker. I wanted to meet his dog so I asked the friend I was with to introduce us. It was love at first sight, and as fate would have it, Dwayne and I bumped into each other a few months later, at roller skating, and have shared our lives together ever since. We moved to in Georgetown in 1990 and soon after adopted 3 orphaned two week old kittens that had been abandoned by their mother and were needing an immediate home. They were 2 males and 1 female and all very different in type from one another. They travelled with us to our new home in Erin, Ont. in 1995.
Our Erin property was perfect for having dogs. We joked with the sellers that we would buy the house if their 2 german shepherds came with it. They said great because they were downsizing and were going to have to give the dogs up anyways, and so, the deal was sealed. We were thrilled that our dream to have dogs in our lives again had come true.
The 2 shepherds we adopted, Lady and Riggs, were loving sweet companions and. Lady passed away first and Riggs had difficulty coping without her best bud. A family member had a 2 year old Siberian Husky, Timber.who was needing a new home and so it was mean't to be. He was full of spunk and personality and quickly became a good companion for Riggs. When she passed on, Timber was restless, and he needed a companion and so it began.... our life with Irish Wolfhounds.
Dwayne had wanted an Irish Wolfhound ever since meeting a pack that lived near us in Erin. It was love at first greet for him. I had seen only seen an Irish Wolfhound very briefly from a far distance and was thinking they might be too big and scruffy. We found a few kennels to visit to learn more about them. The first Irish Wolfhound that greeted me, leaned gently inwards against me. I felt her warmth as she gently placed her head in my arms and then she looked into my eyes, and at that moment I was mesmerized. She gazed into my soul and my heart. I felt like I was melting into this sense of calm and peace. It was unlike anything I had ever felt or known. There was no question about it.... our next dog must be an Irish Wolfhound.
We brought our first IW, Cuwynne, home in April 2006. Although Timber was amused by and enjoyed Cuwynnne's commpanionship, but he was somewhat aloof Our 3 cats kept completely out of sight . It was clear that Cuwynne needed a companion that was similar in size. That realization led us to a decision to temporarily adopt a female wolfhound for Cuwynne to play. While in our care, she was bred by her breeder and we whelped the litter for her, in our home.
Our next Irish Wolfhound, Berrigan, joined us about a year later. That was when our kennel name CuGein (pronounced Cu-Gee-In) came to be. This name is Irish derived and composed of letters found in the names of our first 2 boys Cuwynne (Cu) and Berrigan (Gein), meaning "Hound Birth". Cu is "Hound" in Gaelic while Gein translates to "Birth". Our plan to one day breed Berrigan all came together when Rumor, owned and bred by Gretchen Bernardi and Sue and Bev Stobart came to us. Our interest in breeding Berrigan to Rumor became a reality that worked out so well that our first CuGein breeding producted a litter of 7 irish wolfhound puppies. Many more puppies have been born here, since that first litter, and we hope there may be more to come.
30 years as a Human Resources Manager in the manufacturing sector, brought us to 2010 and it was high time for a career when the union went on strike. From there I decided to a pet sitting career on for size. To my delight the fit was perfect. Quickly I became qualified as a certified dog trainer, and formed my own company CuGein Pet Services. It was abundantly clear to me that I was where I belonged when spending time with dogs and cats all day, in addition to helping compassionate pet owners devoted to providing the best for their furry companions. To participate in any way towards making a positive difference towards improving the well-being of animals, and their quality of life with their humans, has always been the single most gratifying reward for me.
Dwayne and I welcome and enjoy fulfilling and good learning experiences. It is important to us to appreciate the time we have with our hounds and we take pleasure when we see other families doing the same with their companion animals. We have learned great lessons from each of ours that have passed on. Every one of them are remembered and celebrated for the good times we shared. They are with us always as they live on in our hearts forever. Not every day is a cakewalk, but every day is special, and we treasure each moment we have together to be here with them. Our current pack count is at 4. Earlier this spring we said goodbye to a very special hound and good friend, Eibhlin who had just celebrated her 9th birthday. It is wonderful to have shared our lives together for a time. It makes us beam whenever we catch glimpses of our beloved hounds, in the presence of their descendents.
Approximately 10 years ago, we kicked up the volume on another passion of ours which is making our own natural dog treats. Our hounds were thrilled with our decision. We had already been raw feeding our dogs. Making their treats was a natural progression for taking control over what they ingest. All the meat we use is locally raised, sourced and inspected in government licensed facilities, We hand make and personally inspect each and every treat ensuring they are of the highest quality. All are dehydrated single ingredient, natural, free from preservatives, easily digested and nutritious.
Dogs go absolutely crazy for them and after getting a taste of one, they go to extreme measures to demonstrate every good behaviour known to dogs, as they plea to have another. We are hearing from a number of cat owners, that the only way they can keep the beef lung treats safe from cat raids, is to lock it up. Find out more by going to our Natural Dog Treats page.
We are grateful to the wolfhound people who have given us their trust, guidance and support through the years. To our puppy families; we sincerely appreciate all the goodness and devotion you have provided and shared with your fur babies. It is a huge comfort to know that when pups leave us here at CuGein to join you for their next journey through life with you, that they are in the best of loving and caring hands. We enjoy keeping in touch, reading your updates and the pictures you share with us are always a big treat.