Pikatti American Eskimos was started in 1993 when I bought my first American Eskimo dog that I named Anana Pikatti (also known as Pico). According to the Eskimo-English dictionary that I found in the Philadelphia library, the words Anana Pikatti mean beautiful companion, a fitting name for an Eskie. My original intent when I purchased my first Eskie was to just have a nice companion for my Shih Tzu. However, after seeing how well my dog did in the training classes he and I attended and talking to some local Eskie breeders, I decided I wanted to do more with my dog. Once I made the decision to pursue breeding and showing more seriously, I knew I needed to come up with a kennel name. I didn't want it to just be my name or some derivation thereof. I wanted it to be a little more meaningful and appropriate for the dogs. I felt that the word Pikatti suited that purpose quite well.
At Pikatti, we believe that every breeding should be done in an effort to bring together the best combination of temperament, health, breed type and work ethic. We make every effort to produce dogs that are beautiful, sound, healthy and willing to please. We call these dogs "everything" dogs. An "everything" dog is one that has the right combination of qualities to make it equally successful in conformation, agility, obedience, etc. That same dog also has the right temperament to make it a wonderful pet and companion as well.
Typically, there are 2 or fewer Pikatti litters per year. In the years that we have been involved with Eskies, over 20 Pikatti dogs have earned one or more champion titles and we expect that number to continue to grow as numerous others have points toward a championship. Many of our dogs have also successfully competed in agility or obedience as well with some dogs earning as many as 50 titles in 6 different registries. Our dogs have achieved numerous firsts in either agility or agility and conformation combined. You won't see many of our dogs in any conformation Top 10 lists because we don't feel that concentrating on one venue of showing truly demonstrates the versatility of the breed.
In order to achieve the goal of producing healthy dogs, all of our adults are OFA'd once they reach 2 years of age, Optigen prcd PRA tests are done to determine each dog's genetic status for PRA and CERF exams are done at least every two years.* Additionally, puppies are checked by a vet opthamologist between the ages of 8 and 12 weeks to check for PPMs or retinal folds. Adults may also have elbows and patellas checked at the same time as the OFA exam is done. When possible, some of my dogs may also have PennHip exams done as a source of additional information regarding the status of their hips. Many of my dogs have been examined by a cardiologist as an additional way to ensure that all of my breeding stock is sound and healthy.
* OFA stands for Orthopedic Foundation for Animals. It is an organization that evaluates x-rays of dog's hips to determine whether a dog is dysplastic. See the OFA website for more information at www.offa.org
Optigen prcd PRA status can be one of the following: Normal or Pattern A - no genes for PRA, Carrier or Pattern B - has the gene for PRA, but should not develop the disease and Affected or Pattern C - has the gene for the disease and may develop the disease. PRA or Progressive Retinal Atrophy is a degenerative eye disease which may eventually lead to blindness. For more information go to the Optigen website at www.optigen.com.
CERF exams for dogs are similar to eye exams for people. A veterinary opthamologist examines the dog's eyes to see if there are any problems apparent in the eyes. Just like people can have a number of different problems that affect their eyes, so can dogs, so it is a good idea to have the dog's eyes checked on a regular basis.