The Coffey family have been involved with showing and breeding Beagles since 1983. Then, Doug Coffey was the main instigator and showperson in the family. Leanne was only 8 years old and had an interest in showing the Beagles in Beagle Club of NSW junior handler classes. This interest grew and Leanne now shows and controls the breeding program of both Toonhund and Beagelee Beagles.
At first Doug began the Toonhund prefix in 1983. As time went on Doug particularly liked the Beagles being bred by Lesley Funnell (now Hiltz) of the famous Torbay kennel and Liz Whitcher (now Rosbach) of Manahound in Victoria.
Our first purchase from Lesley and Liz was Manahound Touch oSpring and she proved to be a wonderful bitch for us when we bred her to Ch & Nz Ch Clarion Cloak (a Manahound Matchpoint son) to produce Toonhund Spring Bonnet who is behind all the Beagles that we now own. This bitch has produced 2 of our big winners Toonhund Spring Amber who was Runner Up Best in Show at the 3rd Beagle National and Ch Toonhund Spring Colours who was Best of Breed at the 95 Sydney Royal Easter Show. Spring Amber likewise is instrumental in our Kennel producing, Ch Toonhund Spring Tune, Ch Toonhund Cagney and Toonhund Spring Sonata. Spring Tune was a consistent winner at all Breeds shows and was best of Breed with an entry of over 80 at an all breeds show proceeding the National in 2000. Spring Sonata was Best Bitch at the Victorian National.
Beagelee began in 1998 when Leanne imported Manahound Scenter Piece in whelp to a successful stud dog in the USA – Am Ch Shaws Sprirt of the Chase. Chase was an outcross but had a lovely compact shape and wonderful bone. This litter produced a litter of 7 puppies born in Sydney Quarantine. From this litter Ch Beagelee Made in America has went on to win 2 Specialty Best in Shows and her brother Beagelee Air America was used to produce Ch Toonhund Cagney. James also went on to win 2 Specialty Best in shows and a RU BIS All breeds win. Cagney is a combination of the early Toonhund and imported Beagelee lines. James became a top winner for us, but is now retired. He unfortunately became sterile, but we are lucky to have 2 of his children Finnish Spirit and Finest Blend to breed on with.
Aust and Am Ch Manahound Scenter Court combined a wonderful pedigree of Manabay Loven the rocks, Hot Rocks and Manahound Matchpoint and at that time you could not find any Beagles still in Australia with this pedigree. Kory came to live with us 1997 and later retired with our good friends the Cosiers of Roamalot Beagles in Adelaide.
In 2000 Leanne made the trip over to Denmark for the Very Special Show and met up with Eeva Resko of the world famous Daragoj Beagles. We are now fortunate to own Ch Daragoj Golden Design and then later import Nz Ch Daragoj Personal Agenda. These 2 girls have produced our most successful Beagles, Beagelee Finnish Spirit, Finest Blend, Acqua Di Gio, Coco by Chanel and As Good as it Gets. Finnish Spirit has become a major winner for us and in 2006 became the 2nd Beagelee Grand Champion. Frozen semen from Finnish Spirit is now spread throughout the world and his progeny have been doing well in many countries. Golden Design is now happily retired in a loving pet home, but she was one of those great producers who you could breed her to any dog and produce something nice.
Acqua Di Gio and Coco by Chanel came from a dream litter with Golden Design and Finnish Spirit. Gio is a consistant group winner in Sydney and in 2008 became the 3rd Beagelee Grand Champion. Coco keeps getting better with age and has now won 2 specialty bitch challenges. Coco has now proven to be a good producer for us and we hope she will follow in her mothers footsteps. We repeated this combination and kept on 3 bitches Final Match, Finale, Final Play. The quality was not quite as good as their first litter but all 3 bitches have a lovely type, similar to their mother.
Can and Am Ch Beagelee Asgood Asitgets was by Golden design and my first import from Manahound (Scenter Court) in 1997. Becks surprised all of us winning multiple specialties and 2x Award of merit winner in the USA. I later imported a daughter of Becks back into Australia in 2006.
The first Beagelee to receive a Grand title was Beagelee Golden Touch owned by Russell Walker who is a daughter of Ch Goldenbelle Quaestor and Manahound Scenter Piece. Goldenbelle Quaestor combines a wonderful pedigree of the early Torbay and Manabay greats and was one of the last Matchpoint grandsons. Golden Touch has went on to produce very well for Russell and his Tischamingo Beagles.
In 2006 Leanne introduced another bitch from the Manahound kennel Am & Can ch Briarlane Manahound Payback (a daughter of As Good as it Gets) in whelp to Am Ch Springfield N Skyline Big Shot. Big Shot is purely Daragoj bred. From this litter I kept Ch Beagelee Roulette and co-own Capone with Ray mulcahy in Victoria. Blackjack is now in Czech Republic and Lady Luck in South Africa.
In 2007, semen arrived from 3 Daragoj males. Our recent up and coming puppies are from the semen by Daragoj Crystal rain and Am Ch Harnetts Watercolours in the Rain ~ both males are bred down from the early Daragoj type and Clarion Crystal Fire who is a son of Ch clarion cloak (son of Manahound Matchpoint). I have kept 2 bitches from Crystal Rain and a male from both litters bred to Watercolours. Other puppies from these litters are doing well overseas.
In 2008 further semen has been purchased from Am Ch Windkist a Walk in the Park and NL Ch Imagine Me Ike From Elly’s Pack. Walk in the Park ties in with our Shaws Spirit of the Chase lines. This dog has wonderful show attitude and a nice outline, so we hope to produce something with him to Ch Beagelee Finest Blend. When Leanne judged in Denmark in 2007 she awarded best male to Ike. Ike again is bred closely to the Daragoj lines. He is a larger male but very stylish, with parallel movement.
In 2010 semen from a Polish male – Absolutely Spotless Zsach has arrived.
Daragoj the Oriental has arrived in 2008 and he will be used on our bitches late 2008 and early 2009. Orri is a very gentle soul and our permanent house dog. Every visitor who comes to our home are just amazed at orri’s calm temperament. He was a Best in Show winner in France and in 2008 surprised us with an Australian Best in Show all breeds win.
The Beagelee Beagles today are noted for their showmanship and far reaching side gaits. I really love showing my own dogs and seeing them perform in the ring. I think there is nothing better than seeing one of your dogs so happy to be showing and performing. We always try to keep Beagles that have excellent round bone, driving movement and wonderful temperaments. Our Beagles today have a distinct type and this is a blending of our early Manabay routes and the Daragoj lines. Our latest Daragoj influence has given us a touch of style and it has blended very well with our Manabay lines. I have always liked a plush head with flew and you will see this on most of our males. Our Beagles also always tend to be rich tri colours… many people say that I do not like tan and whites, but that is not the case at all. If we were to breed a very nice tan and white, I would be very happy to have one in our kennel.
We are fortunate to know many wonderful Beagle breeders over the world and their help and wisdom has been instrumental in breeding the dogs we have today. A special thank you to Liz Rosbach and Eeva Resko for allowing me to import their wonderful Beagles and for your ongoing friendship and support.
The key to keeping an open eye and be honest when evaluating your own dogs is to travel as much as possible. So far we have been to a many places around the world to see different styles of Beagles and also handling. There is no better way to learn about your breed and to meet other breeders.