Sheila Haddon

The Swedish Vallhund emigrated to Australia in 1981. Sheila and Dennis Haddon of the renowned Norsled Kennels emigrated to Australia and brought with them two male Swedish Vallhunds, Norsled Foxy and Norsled Balzac.  Later two females followed to join them, Mildane Blue Wind and Norsled Maisy.  They suffered an unexpected blow to  their breeding plans when Balzac, a stunning dog, needed to undergo surgery for kidney stones, vets advised that he was unlikely to live for long   Ultimately 'Zac' reached a ripe old age but his health complications seemed to have rendered him sterile.  Mrs Haddon was respected as an absolute authority on the breed by those who knew her, having been a foundation breeder in the UK and responsible for the breed introduction into Australia.  Sheila and Dennis bred some 15 litters in Australia over a decade and a half.  Sheila  was very careful where she placed puppies with a preference to those who would show and breed the dogs.  Her dedication and commitment the breed saw at one time her having some twenty dogs at home on her premises.

In the late 1980s Margaret and Brian Stevens imported a bitch from Chatka Kennels owned by Peter Erlandsson in Sweden, Chatka Nora with her superb nature joined Norsled Disraeli, alongside two bitches and a dog that they bought from Mrs Haddon  and the Bronwylfa Kennels was up and running.    Mrs Stevens and Mrs Haddon were regular exhibitors of their dogs at a time when the breed was barely known by anyone in the assembled dog world, let alone the visiting public.  One one occasion Margaret was assisting Sheila who was entered into a Royal Show and while benched waiting to go into the ring a large group of ladies bustled passed them and stopped to admire the dogs.  One woman asked what kind of dogs they were, and before either Margaret or Sheila were able to answer an 'authoritative' woman in the party loudly explained that they were 'Miniature German Shepherds'  When Sheila prompted the woman for further information that lady was unable to explain what had happened to the dogs tails.                                                                                                                                                                                                                                

On another occasion  attending a Royal show the Swedish Valhunds were making their way to the dog show area when the cattle were also being driven to the cattle rings.  While technically there to be judged for  his  conformation and while Margaret was loaded up with crates, and assorted dog gear in her arms Foxy took it upon himself to assist in herding the cattle and interfere in a way that only a Vallhund could. 


 

Ebony Wright and Dinkum CD
Call name 'Dinkum'

 

The late Leonie Darling

The next imports to arrive in Australia where from the Valdemar Kennel.  Ian and Lesley Grey owned the pioneering Swedish Vallhund Kennel in New Zealand.  Their efforts and achievements noticed around the world.  In 1992 Pat Gowland brought into Australia Valdemar Bruce and Valdemar Bella. Tragically Bruce drowned in a swimming pool.  However Bella was bred and her descendants stayed in Australia and made their way back across to New Zealand for the starting up Valkrista kennel.  Bella also died prematurely in an accident.

Sheila Haddon in 1993 imported  Kärradalens Bruno Björnbuse, and this was Australia's first red Swedish Vallhund.  Bruno was noted for his strong dark red, a colour which he has passed down the lines.  Alongside his stunning bold colouring Bruno, more importantly shared his brilliant temperament with his offspring.


The next significant event occurred in 1998 when Mandy Lees of Leesway Kennels in conjunction with the late Leonie Darling of Dlarah Kennels  imported frozen semen into Australia to produce an ai litter.  The semen was from another famous red sire, Canadian bred Vastgota Rudolf Valentino.  From the frozen semen came a pup Leesway Man About Town the first Swedish Vallhund to carry duel New Zealand and Australian Championship titles.

From  the turn of the last century the rate of imported new bloodlines has picked up pace.  Alan and Christine Robertson of Kloval Kennels imported Valkrista Kiwi Konnection.   Sharon Donaldson of Ausled Kennels  brought NZ CH Leesway Man About Town (ai)   back to Australia and he sired litters while being campaigned to his Australian title.  Also imported by Sharon was Valkrista Paddy's Envoy both from Rose and Hans Madsen's Valkrista kennel.  Envoy sired by Rose's  import from the respected Castleavery kennel in Northern Ireland.  

From New Zealand again came Barahwolfe Blackberry Jazz to join Ausled.   Sharon Donaldson with  Lisa Jönsson of Akka Kennels enriched the gene pool here further by bringing in two Swedish Dogs Sänningegårdens Elof Rönn and Boeråsens Eira.  They followed this by bringing in  frozen semen which to date has produced new stud boy Akka Absolut On Ice NT.   Additionally Vallarity Twist and Shout and Vallarity Harlem Shuffle from New Zealand have been imported into Australia. Dlarah Kennels imported Konnunkkodon Draco Malfoy from Finland followed by Bodeneis Foxy Folkmar also from Finland.

In 2010 Australia saw the arrival of a bitch pup from  America Mill Creek's Chyna Design.  'Dezi' endured a lengthy stay in quarantine but arrived  to take her rightful place in the Australian history in 2010.  She is owned by the late Leonie Darling and Amanda Smith. In 2011 Candace Valkrista Voyager from England arrived in Australia welcomed by Sharon and Terry Donaldson of Ausled kennel.  Then in 2015 Barahwolfe Allied Forces (from frozen Ai semen out of Finland) arrived in Australia, followed by Osuno Robin Hood, and Osuno Maid Marion (also of frozen Ai semen out of Finland). 

The interesting array of great dogs to Australia has assured the ongoing diversity of what would be a limited gene pool if not for the efforts of many people.  All breeders due acknowledgement for the establishment of vastgotaspets here.  The Swedish Vallhund is now assured of a permanent and deserved place in the Australian dog scene with more breeders, exhibitors and companion owners filling the ranks  of this truly versatile and remarkable breed.