Dear Mr. Hevener: Your kennel has been raising dogs
since the 1940s. With so many champions being from
out crosses, what is your opinion on line breeding?
Dear TH: Having bred everything from horses and cattle
to birds, and just about everything in between, I'm
not afraid of it. Years ago, when I was raising Black
Angus cattle, I knew of "The Black Watch"
herd. That breeding herd had been closed to outside
blood for fifty years with no problem. Upon learning
that, any reservation I had about line breeding or
even inbreeding went out the window. Of course, you
must start with animals in good health.
As a side note, we recently imported the
Irish Greyhound winner Elbony Polaris, a daughter
of English, Scottish and "almost" the Irish
Derby as well. (You can see why we wanted a daughter
of his). Some Picture died a few years ago and there
was no frozen semen, since Ireland doesn't allow such
breedings. In Kansas, there is a son of his named
Derby Day, sire of the record-setting sensation WW
Apple Jax, considered by many to be the fastest American
Greyhound alive (and recently sold for six figures).
Did I have any hesitation breeding this daughter of
Some Picture to a son of his? Not on your life. And
we have nine healthy pups to show for it.
Dear Mr. H: A few months ago, you wrote about people
getting roped into outrageous veterinary bills in
emergency situations. How did things turn out for
the dog that got Staph? I had the same thing happen
to me; my dog died and I still can’t pay it
We lost the pregnancy, but Dodge lived and she’s
fully recovered. In fact, she’s the one who
usually chases Mamie the Cat around here. The veterinary
clinic split the bill with me and we moved forward.
Although one of my editors refused to print that article
because she thought it was too bitter, it ended up
hitting a nerve with the public. Many readers wrote
to me, sharing their stories. Great idea for another
Mr. H: What do you think about all the animal control
laws happening all of a sudden and what can we do
Laws are part of life. And while some people say laws
are made to be broken, I’ve found that to be
wasteful. After all, breaking a law means sidelining
yourself and getting caught up in the legal meat-grinder.
Now, if you want to make that your occupation, go
ahead. But, the odds are (And don’t forget,
I’m in the racing business and I believe in
taking chances) you’d be more effective working
from the outside instead of behind bars. My vote on
all this? Organize yourself and everybody else you
can. And fight these laws off. Bring these laws to
light and expose them for the foolishness that so
many of them are. Laughter is tremendous medicine,
W.Z. And a great way to cut lawmakers down to size.
Dear Mr. H:
The heroes in your stories are often senior citizens.
How come I don’t know any old people like that?
It doesn’t seem realistic to me.
New York, New York
Are you ever in for a surprise! I think it’s
very realistic. I know lots of people in their 70s,
80s and beyond who are at the peak of their powers
– and I want to be one of them! Adventure and
an exciting life don’t have anything to do with
age. Whoever told you that? And romance certainly
doesn’t slow down. I know all kinds of people
in love, flirting and getting married right up to
the very end. I didn’t now him, but what about
Auguste Rodin, the French sculptor who created The
Thinker, The Kiss and so many other great masterpieces?
He was unconscious and on his deathbed when he married
Madame Rose! And how about the balding, passionate
Afghan Hound owner Picasso? Now, there was an animal
lover for you. Don’t give up hope, my friend.
If you don’t know any exciting senior citizens
right now, you’ve got plenty of time to become