Married to Kristine since 1990, we have two sons and a daughter between the ages of 20 to 26 years. I have been employed as a banker in the same bank for the last 34 years.
I was born in a little village called Oltedal in South-West Norway in 1961. Today we live just 12 km’s away from my birth place. From early childhood my interest in animals in general, and horses and dogs in particular, was very obvious. After involvement in all my neighbours’ dogs I got my own Buhund back in 1970. At that time the dogs usually went around without a leash, as did mine. As a dominant male and quite naughty to other males, his life ended after a fight at the age of 5 years.
From that moment my search for another dog went on to other breeds. German Shepherd was the dream, but my parents were not convinced. To get a dog at all I had to come up with the most convincing arguments. The text and picture of a Golden Retriever made the issue hard for them to refuse. I wanted a dog, but compromised again to a bitch.
So from 1977 there have always been Golden Retrievers around me.
I was involved in club activities from the start. First obedience and some field training, then the show committee for the Retriever Club in our region, and their yearly championship show. In 1979 our local club invited Mr Ron Bradbury with the prefix Nortonwood to judge the Golden Retrievers. He certainly gave me lots of motivation to continue for even more involvement in our beautiful breed. I visited Nortonwood many times and was introduced to lots of famous breeders of Golden Retrievers from all over the world during my stays with them in England.
During 1981 and 1982 I had to do my duty for the military defence. Of course I ended up at the dog training school for my 15 months duty. A lovely opportunity to train dogs in all kinds of situations. The location of this school was nearby the very famous Norwegian Golden Retriever Kennel Mjærumhøgdas.
I had visited them once before, but during this year the friendship developed to be something more. After my military duty I stayed on at this kennel for nearly six months. The kennel had great success breeding both Golden Retrievers and Samoyeds. My opportunity to get involved at this level of breeding is remembered as being quite unique.
After this Ch Mjærumhøgdas Dominique ‘followed me home’. She is behind all today’s Zenanas together with Camcas Delilah from the Camrose line.
After a period meeting my wife, getting married, and two children and some other breeds at home (amongst them a Giant Schnauzer), we got our first British Import in 1997 – Siatham Raynor. As a personality he had all the qualities I am looking for in the breed. So gentle and friendly to his surroundings. He suited my bitch line and all my goldens are descended from him as well.
Raynor managed to be the first Golden Retriever from my district to be Top Golden Retriever in Norway. Both in 2001 and 2002.
Last year 2012 his great granddaughter Ch Zenana’s Paris Moonlight managed to win this trophy as the first homebred bitch to win since the trophy started in 1970.
My experience from the show ring has also involved many stewarding works. Frequently from 1982 until my judging authorisation was given in 2003.
I have been judging Golden Retrievers at championship level at so far 63 times in 26 different countries so far. Croatia will be the 27th as it is my first time here. I have offer CC’s at Gundog Breeds of Scotland, in 2014.
And also done Golden & Labrador specialitys in Australia & New Zealand.
I have extended my FCI authorisation to include 16 breeds in group 2, all breeds in group 5, 7 & 8. Also authorized as a Best in Show judge at international dog shows.
I am looking much forward to this opportunity to visit Croatia and its dog venue. I have already visited this beautiful country as a tourist on pure holiday purpose. Surely I think the doggy venue will be the same.
Best regards Børge Espeland