For some time we have found the best solution to anyone thinking of having a Wolfhound from our Kennel, whether an experienced owner or a complete novice, to be to ask them to visit us and meet the dogs. Indeed, no prospective owners receive a Bonaforte hound without visiting us, prior to the usual checks. Up till now we have done this on a very much individual basis, arranging visits for people with full access to the Kennel and the dogs and often spending several hours with one lot of visitors. Naturally visitors always meet all the hounds and any of the Bonaforte Team that happen to be there at the time and occasionally they may be fortunate enough to visit when we have had an owner dropping in for a chat and to collect some dog food. Before Christmas we invited our owners to an ‘open house’ event as a purely social get together so we could all chat over some very nice food and drink prior to the hectic holiday period. This was such a huge hit with our owners that we thought we would try and combine the two types of event and hence the Bonaforte Open Day was born.
A new dynamic………….. Friday 6th February 2015 was the date set for our first combination Kennel Open Day and it was a resounding success on all sides! Broadholme House Farm paid host to 3 lots of visitors and a gaggle (seems to be the most appropriate collective noun) of existing owners. Although the customary show round of the Kennel facilities and meeting the dogs still took place, things took on a different dynamic with the owners also assisting and chatting to visitors about their experiences and the different aspects of the Kennel. It was a delight to see the meeting of different people, from various walks of life, with a shared love of our magnificent breed. Along with the trips up the paddocks in the RTV with the hounds running alongside, there was also the opportunity to get up close and personal with the dogs and even a grooming demonstration for those people wondering about how to care for a Wolfhound coat and also owner thinking about showing and preparing their dog for the ring. Just like every other great party, the hub of activities eventually descended on the kitchen and we were all delighted to be offered some great refreshments (and cake….naturally) enjoying fabulous company and convivial surroundings. As some of our visitors had travelled considerable distances including Cornwall, we consider it only polite to ensure that they are ‘fed and watered’ before returning home! The Bonaforte Kennel will most definitely be hosting another similar event in the next few weeks, once Crufts is over and the weather has improved too, potentially early April and we envisage that this format will go from strength to strength?