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About my kennel name & logo
My Kennel Name-- Why "Ajuaq"
My first breed was Alaskan Malamutes. I spent a long time looking for Mahlmut or Inuit words, phrases, and names to use in my dogs' registered names. This was not as easy as I thought it would be. I finally found an Inuit/English dictionary in the
When I first started breeding, I was in a partnership with two very good friends who already had an established kennel name, reflecting their love for the Uintah mountain range in
Perhaps it's because I grew up in a state named after a Native American tribe, or that I've always had a love for the wilds of that state, or perhaps that Malamutes have long been used as sled dogs for different arctic tribes--but no matter what it is, I have always had a great deal of respect for all Native Americans, their way of life, and their special relationship with Nature. When I was the show chair for the Finnish Spitz Club of America's national specialty, I and my committee wanted to have a Native American theme, and searched for an artist who could help us come up with a design to represent it. We found Eugene Tachinni, a member of the Navajo tribe, who has great artistic talent.
I told him about the Finnish Spitz breed--that they are a hunter, primarily used to hunt birds--and provided him with many photographs of different dogs. He came up with the phrase "Earth and Sky" in reference to the dogs, their prey, and all of our connection to the Earth and the Sky. Then, to my surprise and delight, he chose a picture of Kodi, taken by the extremely talented photographer Tom Weigand of The Winning Image, to use as the foundation for the logo. Using that picture, he then drew the two interlocking circles--one in red, and one in turquoise. The red circle, placed over Kodi's eye, symbolizes power, honor, and blood (as in the blood of the hunt or of a battle). The placement is also important, reminiscent of when Navajo braves would paint a red circle over their horses' eyes before a hunt or a battle. The turquoise one symbolizes tradition, loyalty, and the endless expanse of the sky. Once the show was over, I adopted it as my kennel logo.
With the mix of Inuit and Navajo elements, I found the perfect balance for me and my new start in life.