We could write a book on how we came to be involved with the Connemara line of Jack Russell Terriers nearly two decades ago. However, in the interest of time and cutting to the chase; We met a special Irishman who after some time, became a trusted friend and eventually our mentor. We vowed to continue this line, and keeping with the tradition his family and others before them set forth.
The Connemara Story
We are a four generation, Law Enforcement / Military family. Currently there are two of us still serving. Sheila has done a lot during her career as a Police Officer. Some of her best years were spent as a K-9 handler, where she worked/trained two Belgian Malinois in tracking, narcotics detection and patrol work. Hand reared within our family from the tender age of eight weeks - Her best partner; ‘Justice’, passed away in her arms at the age of 10 years, July '06.
Sheila's children grew up with, loved and yes sometimes only tolerated the hot, always on the ready, prey driven, very game working dogs. When Dakota, Sheila's youngest son was young, he asked for a little dog to call his own. This is how our love affair with the Jack Russell began. ￼At first, Sheila's Husband, Darrell wasn't impressed - as he had always preferred "big dogs - real dogs". But it wouldn’t be long before his heart too would be stolen by these wonderful little creatures. Darrell would later prove to be the silent force behind our early success of Connemara and what we stand for today. Always there to lend a hand, offer encouragement and remind Sheila that compromise was not an option: We would do this right - or not at all.
Darrell began his public service career as a US Marine. He later became a Police Officer and then an International Peace Keeper in Kosovo. His last mission would be to serve as an International Police Officer - part of a State Department mission, in war torn Iraq.
With one phone call, life as our family knew it would forever be changed; September 17th, 2006, Sheila received a distraught call from her eldest son (Clayton) serving in the US Air Force. He had received information that his father had just been hit by sniper fire in Tikrit, Iraq. Sheila insisted the information was incorrect as she had just spoken to Darrell hours earlier. ￼
As the sun rose that morning, two Maine State Troopers would slowly make their way up our drive…Our families fear of Darrell being in Iraq was now a reality - We would never see his smile again. We laid him to rest on Sep, 25 2006 with full Police & Military honors.
On the same day of Darrell's funeral, sadly, we would meet and spend time with the Irishman who introduced us to these terriers for the last time. I remember during this dark time so many Connemara families reached out and showed their support. Who knew that acquaintances we had made placing puppies in homes, would later come to be thought of as dear friends. Leslie is one of those friends who has helped us continue this wonderful line of Jack Russells. Her website can be seen here. www.kylemoreterriers.com
After the passing of Darrell, Stephanie (Sheila and Darrells only daughter), moved back home from Japan, after serving in the US Air Force. Her homecoming was joyous and it wasn’t long before she assumed a spot alongside Sheila, raising the puppies. By 2011, Stephanie and Sheila had worked out what each of their strengths were and became equals at Connemara. In 2016, Sheila handed the Connemara business to Stephanie and returned to police work. Sheila recently retired as Chief in the summer of 2021 and now resides in Northern Maine. Sheila more recently has gotten in to breeding the poochon. If interested in this hypoallergenic breed, please visit her website. https://www.cavalierpoodlebichon.com/
Stephanie now runs Connemara Terriers with the assistance of her husband, children and youngest brother, who was five when this all started. He recently graduated college with a Bio-Chem Major. Stephanie's children are at the perfect age (10 and 13) to get involved with socializing the pups and boy do they. Her husband Kevin brings so much support and always a helping hand when needed. It was actually Kevin who first suggested we introduce the black and tan color in 2019. - This is very much a family affair.
The Next Generation
After years of working with and being mentored by Sheila, Stephanie took over Connemara Terrriers in 2016. She has been in the business and working along side Sheila since 2006. Pictured is Stephanie on the right, her husband Kevin and her two children, Hudson and Lucy.
Photo taken outside of our room (D'Arcy Suite) at Kinnity Castle Co. offaly, Ireland.
Connemara's greatest little helpers. Lucy & Hudson.
This is Dakota with his first Jack Russell "Gracie" and his newest Jack Russell, "Lemon". Lemon is Gracie's Great Granddaughter. Gracie sadly passed away from old age at 15.
WE OFFER A $100 DISCOUNT TO OUR FELLOW VETERANS!
WE ALSO OFFER A $200 DISCOUNT TO OUR RETURNING CLIENTS.
THESE DISCOUNTS CAN NOT BE COMBINED.
It was originally bred by a small handful of dedicated terriermen and only shared amongst family and friends. This line has been carefully bred to maintain their manageable and agreeable temperaments and superior health. They are known for being fantastic pets who get on well with small children, other dogs and cats.Read more here… Connemara DNA Breed Results
As your breeder, we will be an ongoing resource for you both now and in the future, so it is important from the start that we develop a good relationship and are able to work together and trust one another. If interested in a Jack Russell Terrier puppy, Please browse and enjoy our website and feel free to contact us anytime.
WHY ALL THE DIFFERENT NAMES AND TERMS FOR THE JACK RUSSELL TERRIER?
The short explanation is that the Jack Russell Terrier was never actually considered a breed until the last decade. There have been many different names used to differentiate between the taller version usually ranging from (12-15") and the shorter version (typically 9-10"-12"). The shorter Jack Russell Terriers are known by many names like: Shorty Jack Russells, Short-legged Jack Russells, Shorties, English Jack Russell Terriers, Russell Terriers, Irish Jack Russell Terriers, Miniature Jack Russell and of course, simply Jack Russell Terrier puppies. While there are some differences in the Jack Russell Terrier world, what matters most, is not what type/size/style of Jack Russell you are considering - But rather the health and genetics behind the line and the breeding and socialization program the breeder practices.