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CKC Seminar

The CKC Seminar is going virtual this year! Join us November 14th and 15th via Zoom for two full days of breeder education.
And the best part? Thanks to our amazing sponsor Purina® Pro Plan® CKC Members receive free access to both days! That’s right – free access to hours of breeder education from the comfort of your home on topics like puppy developmental stages, contracts, nutrition, and more. 

The CKC Seminar is designed for breeders of all experience and knowledge levels, from those in the early stages of developing their breeding programs to those that have been breeding for decades.
This year’s seminar will feature presentations on Savvy Socialization for Puppies, Temperament Testing Puppies the Avidog Way, Evaluating Prospective Homes for Our Pups and Dogs, Contract Details Wag the Dog, Marketing - Why It’s Important for Preserving Purebred Dogs, and Breeder Advocacy - Our Current Environment and Why Your Voice Really Matters.

View the full schedule here.


Dr Gayle Watkins

Gayle is a longtime dog breeder and competitor, with over 130 American and Canadian Conformation, Tracking, Obedience and Agility champions, plus Qualified-All Age and Master Hunter golden retrievers. She is one of the few breeders to be selected three times as an AKC Breeder of the Year, for Rally in 2016, agility in 2017, tracking in 2018 and in 2019 she was selected as a Gold-level AKC Breeder of Merit. Gayle’s passions are science and dogs so 8 years ago she started Avidog International to research and teach cutting-edge, scientifically-sound dog breeding and puppy rearing methods.
Today, Avidog is an active community with thousands of students and members. Gayle continues to work closely with researchers as a member of the Board of the Baker Institute at Cornell University and Canine Health Events, as well as the AKC Canine Health and Morris Animal Foundations. Today, Gayle lives with her husband, Andy, and two goldens in the mountains of western North Carolina.

Dr. Gail H. Forsythe, Lawyer & Mediator
(B.Ed., LL.B., LL.M., S.J.D. Duke Law)

Dr. Forsythe has bred Best in Show and #1 ranked Chow Chows, Pekingese and Japanese Chin since 1975. Her “Lionheart” dogs have received top honours at World Dog Shows and over 140 championship titles in 10 countries. She is a recipient of AKC’s  Outstanding Sportsmanship award. She is a CKC licensed all breed judge.

Dr. Forsythe completed her Doctorate in mediation law at Duke University, one of America’s top law schools. She was called to the Alberta bar in 1987; and the BC bar in 1993.  She has appeared before various levels of court and administrative tribunals; and mediated hundreds of cases. She was the first lawyer in North America to serve as  Ombudsperson for a Law Society. Her litigation practice includes animal law, dog contracts, CKC hearings,  family law, workplace harassment and mediation. 

Screen-Shot-2020-11-03-at-7-46-57-AM.pngDr. Raj Naik 

Dr. Raj Naik graduated from the Virginia-Maryland College of Veterinary Medicine in 2014. He went on to complete a rotating medical and surgical internship at Red Bank Veterinary Hospital in New Jersey. Thereafter, his love of nutrition brought him to the University of Tennessee to pursue specialty training in small animal clinical nutrition. Raj completed his residency in 2017 and joined Nestlé Purina shortly thereafter. As a Veterinary Communications Manager and one of several board-certified veterinary nutritionists at Purina, Raj serves as a liaison between Purina and the veterinary community. In his free time, you will find Raj cooking or hiking with his wife, Elisabeth, and dog, Aspen.

Corrie Horne, B.A. Comm – PR

The are two passions in my life – the world of communications and purebred dogs.
I grew up in the dog fancy, attending my first dog show at a young age, with our Pulik in tow – and have been hooked ever since. I have spent the past 35 plus years dedicating my time to dogs, training and competing in nearly all facets of our beloved sport – conformation, agility, obedience, rally obedience – as well as dabbling in tracking and field. I’ve have found my “heart” breed with Golden Retrievers for the past 27 years. I did make dogs my career of choice for a number of years – grooming and teaching obedience classes.
My other passion – and my daytime profession – is communications. I have spent the past 14 years working professionally in the field of communications, public relations and marketing. I have experience with strategic communications, change management, media relations, internal communications, brand and reputation management, and effective traditional and online communications/marketing.
In my career, I have launched multiple social media campaigns and many complex digital communications channels to reach new audiences.

Bridging my two passions, I have and continue to volunteer with the kennel clubs that I am a member of – including being the Public Relations Chair for the Alberta Kennel Club and current CKC Communications Committee Chair. 

Sarah McDowell

Sarah is the Manger, Government and External Relations with the Canadian Kennel Club and serves as the primary contact for stakeholder, media, and public relations. Sarah works to build strategic relationships with government and stakeholders at all levels, working with subject matter experts to promote responsible dog ownership and breeding practices, well-crafted dangerous dog legislation, in addition to breeder and dog-friendly bylaws. She advocates for purebred dogs and speaks out on issues that affect the health and welfare of all dogs, to ensure that responsible owners and their dogs are well represented.

Through her work as the staff liaison for the CKC Responsible Dog Ownership Committee, Sarah facilitates internal legislative policy review and addresses risks associated with canine disease and the mass importation of dogs into Canada.

As the staff liaison for the CKC Canine Good Neighbour (CGN) Council, Sarah works with council members to revitalize the CGN program, to increase public education and outreach efforts.Sarah supports and advises volunteer provincial CKC Task Groups to consult with provincial governments regarding breeder regulations and standards of care for companion animals. Sarah received her HBA, English, with post-grad studies in Marketing and Event Management. Prior to joining CKC in 2005, Sarah worked in management roles in non-profit, marketing and education.


The 2020 CKC Seminar is proudly brought to you by Purina® Pro Plan® 

Breeding and competing are more than hobbies — they’re ways of life. Purina Pro Club® shares your commitment to your dogs, celebrates your achievements, recognizes your expertise and supports your journey toward further success.
As the returning presenting sponsor of the 2020 CKC Seminar, Purina recognizes the value breeder education opportunities hold for our CKC members, and the importance of sharing their evidence-based expertise in nutrition and canine care. This includes access to their vast collection of resources on health, genetics, conditioning and nutrition available online through their breeder support program, the Purina Pro Club®.

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