At K9 Power, we like to stay active on social media and meet people who use and love our products in the real world. We came across Dr. Sharon Lynch when she used our hashtag #K9SUPERPOWER on Instagram, and we quickly fell in love with her beautiful and extremely talented dog Maise. Dr. Lynch is a veterinarian located in Massachusetts, and Maise is a labrador who wins dock diving and agility competitions on the regular. Dr. Lynch agreed to do an interview with us to help us learn more about how Maise uses K9 Power products to win blue ribbons (plus, we wanted to share some adorable photos of her dressed up). Read on for the full interview.
1. Tell me a little bit about yourself and your history with dogs! Where are you from? How did you become a dog lover?
I am originally from Connecticut and currently living in Washington MA where I own a vet clinic. Growing up in CT, we always had a dog and I was a huge animal lover – I can’t count the number of cats that “followed me home” when I was doing my paper route, or just out with my friends. I knew I wanted to be a vet from a young age. I went to vet school in Dublin Ireland, and was amazed at how dogs in Ireland were treated – there were amazing working dogs and then much-loved pets. Nutrition was always something I was really interested in, especially watching the working dogs. I got my first dog, Phoebe, a black Labrador, my final year in vet school and she went everywhere with me, even lectures! She was a world traveler – having been born and raised in Ireland, she moved back to the US with me a few years after vet school. After working at two of the biggest emergency clinics in New England, I decided that I wanted to buy my own practice, and purchasedHilltowns Vet Clinic, in Washington, MA. We are located in the Berkshires of Western MA, and in my off time, I am generally hiking in the beautiful surrounding area with the dogs.
2. Can you give me some background on your dog Maise? What is her breed, how long have you had her, how did you come up with her name, etc.?
Maise is my third Labrador – she arrived as a puppy on a snowy day in January 2012. When Phoebe was about 7, one of my clients brought in a litter of Labrador puppies for their first vaccinations, and I fell in love with Emma, and somehow convinced her breeder to let my husband and I have her – she was promised to another family. She and my husband Fred soon started competing with agility. Her breeder also competed in agility and took Fred under his wing and loved watching Emma at trials. It was a given that we would get our next puppy from them. We began thinking about a puppy in 2011, as Phoebe turned 14 and Emma was 6. Our breeder was having another litter in November 2011, which would be his last as he had been diagnosed with pancreatic cancer a year or so prior to this. I first met Maise when she was 2 weeks old, and the rest is history. Her full name is Case Pond’s Maise Madra Bui which loosely translates from Irish to beautiful yellow dog. I did not take into consideration that Maise rhymes with crazy, and hence she became Maise the Leaping Lunatic!
3. Which events does Maise compete in?
Maise competes in DockDogs, Dueling Dogs and does a little bit of disc competition as well. We also just began doing some training for Trick Dog titles with AKC as well, and she has done some agility as well. One of her littermates went to a family that was already competing in DockDogs and lives nearby, so we would get together at their lake house and let the two puppies play – Maise quickly learned from Trey that launching at speed into the water and swimming was the best thing in the world to do! We started competing with DockDogs when she was about a year and a half old – she refused to jump at her first competition, but since then she has never looked back! She competes in all three disciplines in DockDogs – Big Air, Speed Retrieve, and Extreme Vertical, thus making her an IronDog. Speed Retrieve is her absolute favorite and she loves it! She has been to World Championships the last three years in a row – 2014 for IronDog and Speed Retrieve, 2015 for IronDog and Speed Retrieve, and 2016 for Big Air, Speed Retrieve and Dueling Dogs. She finished 6th in Class 1 finals in Dueling Dogs in November, competing against the best of the best! Dueling Dogs is the newest sport in dock diving for dogs, where two dogs go head to head and race for the bumper. Maise has truly found her love with this – she is amazing and loves the competition. We have already scheduled a few events with Dueling Dogs this summer! I started playing disc with Maise as a way to help keep her conditioned in the off season and she really seems to love it! She had one competition last year and we are hoping to do a few this summer as well!
4. When and how did you realize she had this talent?
I started to realize how fast she was and how much she loved to swim as a puppy, and started to look for an outlet for her energy. It wasn’t until she was about 2 and started competing for her second season of DockDogs that I realized that she was a big jumper and a fast swimmer. I love to joke that she can keep up with the big boys in the water as she is a little Labrador – only about 53 lbs! She amazes me every day with her accomplishments – she gives me her heart and soul in anything we do!
She loves her food withShow StopperandSuper Fuel! Go Dogis expected/ demanded when she comes in from a workout or off the treadmill – she actually runs to the counter where it is kept until we make her “Juice” – I mix Go Dog with water and a handful of kibble for her.
7. Have you seen differences in her performance, mood, coat, etc. in times when she has and hasn’t been using these products? Which ones?
We started usingGo Dogat events in the summer as she seemed to be getting tired after a couple of jumps in the heat. She seems to have much more energy during competition and it takes her less time to recover after a weekend on the dock – she used to be tired for a couple of days after an event. She is no longer tired after events and is ready for more play the next day. As I was pleased with how she was doing with the Go Dog, I started looking at Super Fuel – she has improved dramatically since I started giving it to her – her average jump went from 18 feet to almost 22! Her Speed Retrieve times dropped by 0.5 seconds as well. She has developed muscles that are comparable to a well trained intact male dog! The Show Stopper seems to help with her coat and I have always committed to giving the Omega 3 and 6’s to my dogs for healthy immune systems and recovery from exercise.
8. How did you hear about K9POWER nutritional supplements?
I started researching electrolyte supplements after trying a sample of a different company’s product. Go Dogseemed to be the best out there and Maise loves the taste. Seeing the results of this with her, it seemed like a natural progression to look at the other supplements made by K9POWER!
9. What’s a funny Maise story?
Maise is a really silly dog, so finding one story is hard. We did pick her as a baby as she was the fattest, laziest puppy in the litter! The litter was purposely bred to be agility dogs, so we knew they were going to be fun active dogs, just had no idea how much of a lunatic she was going to be! Her littermates are all just as active, but I think she takes the cake in terms of drive and desire to work. All of the puppies in her litter compete in numerous sports! Another funny story occurred at an event a couple of years ago – I was packing up the car and had the trunk open along with the door. I asked her to get in the car – she hopped into the trunk and sat there almost laughing! She loves to go visit our chickens and kisses them all on the head – needless to say, they are not that impressed!
10. Does Maise have any brothers or sisters? And do they use K9POWER products too?
We have two other dogs Emma and Scout. Emma is almost 13 and a black Labrador. She currently gets Show Stopper and loves it. She has a fantastic coat and looks great. She also tends to have some seasonal allergies and her itching has drastically improved in the summer since being on it. She also jumps a bit with DockDogs and will get some Go Dog in the summer at events if it is really hot! At her age, she is in great health and still loves jumping and competing in agility and although not a huge jumper, she is a crowd pleaser as she has so much fun playing on the dock. Scout is a 2 year old Belgian Malinois that we rescued last summer – we became foster failures with him. He came to us with some major health problems and we agreed to foster him in the clinic for treatment, then fell in love with the crazy boy! He had both heart-worm disease and a horrendous injury to one of his back legs, where he was missing a huge amount of skin. I started him on Show Stopper right away and swear it has helped with the healing of his leg – he now has a scar, but his coat looks amazing and the scar is really only a fraction of what it should be given his injury! He is going to start training for DockDogs and Disc – fingers crossed he will be a big jumper like his sister! Once we start training with him this spring, he will be on the same regimen as Maise, getting Super Fuel and Go Dog regularly. He is currently in obedience classes and loving Rally. He also had some major fear issues with people, so he is a work in progress and really a great fit in our house!
11. What does Maise love to do when she’s not winning blue ribbons?
Maise’s favorite thing to do when not competing is to retrieve – anything, anywhere, anytime – be it a bumper, a ball, a Frisbee – if there is water involved, that is even better! She really loves to play baseball – she drops the ball at your feet, turns around and waits for the home run which she then retrieves at full speed! I keep trying to get the Red Sox to watch some footage… She also loves working out on Fit Paws equipment and learning new tricks!
12. We know Maise loves to dress up! What would you say is her best costume she’s worn so far?
Maise will pretty much wear anything I ask her too – I love her Red Sox jersey, she was a turtle for Halloween this year. She has an ER Vet costume, a princess costume, a pirate costume! She jumps in a supergirl suit and cape at Dockdogs, along with a couple other suits – her first one has a pancreatic cancer ribbon in honor of her breeder. I have to say that my favorite was probably Halloween in 2015 where she went Trick or Treating with my nephew, who was 11 months old – she was a raptor and he was a triceratops! We somehow didn’t get pictures of them together!
13. Is there anything else you’d like to add?
Maise is just the best little yellow dog! I can’t say enough good about her and what a great dog she is! She is a great ambassador for dogs and dog sports and loves to be out and about. She has been amazing with teaching Scout how to behave in public and boosting his confidence. She makes me smile every day and my life is better because of her!
Thank you so much for sharing with us, Dr. Lynch. Maise is such an amazing pup, and we are so proud to provide products that help her perform her best!