Naomi Timothy, a Mumbai-based dog lover and a home breeder on her journey to becoming one of the most trusted home breeders in the country
Ever since I was a child, I remember living with my dogs. Back then, even though pedigree dogs were gaining popularity, I was always tempted to adopt dogs off the street. And that’s where my love for dogs was born.
My first few dogs were the Indian strays that fared extremely well in our city. As I grew up, I was curious to understand other dog breeds as well. My mother, who is my only parent, has been very encouraging of my hobby, allowed me to bring home a Labrador puppy. The puppy belonged to my cousin brother’s dog’s litter in Pune.
When I brought home the puppy, I had never intended to breed dogs. However, with time, I decided to give it a try. Incidentally, my dog’s first litter fared very well, with one of my dogs becoming the first therapy animals in the country. Therapy dogs assist chronically ill patients accept their medical condition and work towards curing depression and other psychiatric and physical illnesses.
Though I had completed my graduation from a college in Mumbai, I knew my calling was elsewhere. I quit my job at Wika Instruments, an MNC and decided to work as a full-time breeder.
I went on to register myself with the Kennel Club of India (KCI) as a home breeder. The KCI tests and recognises well-tempered, thorough bred dogs and registers them under its banner to safeguard the breed in India. All my dogs are registered with the KCI and come with a health certificate.
Since my dogs were home bred, their popularity grew manifold, but yet, I stuck to ethical breeding. Since the inception of my breeding business, I’ve stuck to only allowing my dogs to deliver 3-4 litters each, against the puppy-mill numbers that use dogs to make over 10 litters each.
Many ask me why I don’t breed my dogs as often, to which, my answer is this – I thorough breed my dogs to safeguard their lineage and their breed characteristics. And hence, I breed each of my dogs once in two years only.
I always had a liking towards the red Cocker Spaniels, and purchased a Spanish line cocker spaniel puppy from a well-known breeder in Pune. I began breeding her and since then, there was no looking back. I began breeding the Shih Tzu, one of the most regal toy breeds as well.
My puppies have been purchased by so many animal enthusiasts including celebrities like Sri Devi, Saif Ali Khan, Amrita Singh, Nikhil Thampi, Divya Palat, Asha Bhosle, Shilpa Shetty, Sunny Leone, Sajid Wajid, Cherag Bhamboat, Kavita Kaushik, and many more. Most of these dogs have won canine competitions as well.
While this is an ethical business, my love for dogs always encourages me to conduct a back ground check of the people who buy my dogs. They most likely, must come through a reference.
What most people don’t understand is that while dogs make for great pets and look just as cute when they are young, the breeding methodology, medical back ground and the temperament of its parents plays a major role in the health of a puppy. Dog lovers must educate themselves on why ethical breeding is essential and then move on to select and buy or adopt a puppy.
My mother has been my support system since the day I decided to make a career in this field. Being a single parent, she has beautifully doubled up as a mother and father, as well as my guide and my most honest critic.
Dog breeding, as easy as it may seem, come with a lot of challenges. Before my dogs are bred, their genetics are checked to rule out any external or internal, physical and mental deformities. The puppies are regularly vet checked and are fed every three hours to ensure their steady growth. Unlike other commercial practices, my puppies only go home when they are completely weaned off their mother and are independent dogs, most likely, at two months of age.
While I sell my puppies with great enthusiasm, I am a strong believer of adoptions as well. I often adopt pregnant stray dogs and their litters, raise them in a clean environment and put them up for adoption with just the same concern and enthusiasm as I do with my pedigree dogs. I believe in neutering my stray dogs to avoid puppy road accidents and other mishaps.
While I do breed my own dogs, I encourage my home-breeder friends in the industry and help them find homes for their dogs too. I have, until now, provided a wide range of dog breeds including the Labrador, Golden Retriever, Shih Tzu, Pomeranian, Lhasa Apso, Poodle, Pugs, Boxers, Rottweilers, Beagles, Yorkshire Terriers, and lastly, the Indi Breed.
One side that not many people know about me is my love for art. I use old scraps and naturally available or most basic items to create art for my close friends and family. My love for dogs and my passion to keep each breed alive and healthy is what keeps me going, despite the many challenges I have faced.
I encourage my clients to breed their dogs too, not for the money, but to keep the good dog lineage alive. After all, it’s a dogs world, well at least for those like me.
About Naomi Timothy
Naomi Timothy, is a Mumbai-based dog lover and a home breeder on her journey to becoming one of the most trusted home breeders in the country