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Our Portuguese Water Dogs, Kira and Minnow are our constant companions. Through them, we have made many new friends, both in the PWD world and the dog training world. We’ve been introduced to new activities such as dog agility and obedience.

Kira is 7 and is more formally known as:

U-CD Keta’s Raincountry Angler CGC/TDI OJC NAC NGC R-1MCL R-2

We started agility with Kira when she was about one year old and has competed in NADAC and AKC agility. Although she loves the sport, her tendency to do “victory laps” around the barn convinced us that a little obedience training would be appropriate. Eventually we started competing in UKC obedience and after three agonizingly long years in the novice obedience ring finally earned her U-CD. Then we discovered rally obedience and Kira was in heaven! She loves the fun and communication in the rally ring. She has earned qualifying legs four out of four times in Level I trials and three out of four entries in Level II trials, and earned titles at both levels.

Kira is a solid brown curly PWD with a lot of grey ticking and a very solid, muscular build. Although she plays roughly and vocally with her little sister, Minnow, Kira is amazingly gentle with people, especially children and elders. She enjoys nothing more than being the center of a mob of kids, getting lots of pets and hugs.

At 3 1/2, Minnow doesn’t have nearly as many “letters” as Kira. However, we have hopes that the “good dog fairy” is lurking in the neighborhood, waiting to bop Minnow on the head with her magic wand! Meanwhile, Minnow is more formally known as:

Stargazer’s TorridZone Peixinho R-2

Peixinho is (roughly) Portuguese for “little fish” and Minnow lives up to the name! Anytime she’s near the water, she’s ready to go swimming. On our travels, we plan to train Minnow for PWD water trials. In addition, she has earned a Level I RallyO title, and competed in UKC obedience and AKC agility. Soon she will make her debut in the NADAC agility ring.

Minnow is a black and white curly PWD. We were very lucky to get this lovely girl from her granny Sandy and breeder Meg when she developed a significant underbite, keeping her out of the breed ring.

What are Portuguese Water Dogs?
Portuguese Water Dogs (PWD) are medium-sized, very intelligent and active, working dogs. They were originally bred to work on fishing boats where they retrieved gear and took messages between boats. Many people who aren’t familiar with the breed initially think that they are standard poodles. (Most PWD people spend a lot of time saying “No, it’s NOT a poodle!) Like poodles, they have no undercoat, making them relatively non-allergenic. Their coats are hair that keeps growing and needs to be clipped. While we truly enjoy our curly girls, the PWD is a very active dog who really needs to have a job. Their temperament and their tendency to be very “mouthy” as puppies mean that they aren’t a suitable dog for everyone.

To learn more about Portuguese Water Dogs, check out the Portuguese Water Dog Club of America.

To see photos of our dogs, click here.

Page update 11/14/2006