June Joy All Star: Mike Greene
Our June Joy All Star goes out to Mike Greene, owner of Cottonville Road Kennels. Mike is a 4th generation beagler in Norwood, NC. He has been beagling since he was just a boy with his father and grandfather. His father had the biggest impact on not only his passion for running beagles, but for starting his own business as well.
“My dad (Billy Greene) had the biggest influence on my passion to run beagles. I owe my success in beagling to him.”Mike Greene
Mike’s foundation dogs of his kennel were two females by the names of Cottonville Road Wendy Leigh and Cottonville Road Katie. They were the “measuring sticks” to his kennel in the beginning because if a dog was just as good or even better than them- they would be sold. Wendy and Katie were true rabbit dogs. Mike started exploring different registered bloodlines so he could find the bloodline that produced Wendy and Katie. Then, in 2013, Mike purchased his very first Branko dog, Cottonville Road Tom. He was a great dog, very clean, smart, and a great hunter. However, he wasn’t as good as Wendy and Katie. So, Mike started looking deeper into the bloodline and settled on a dog bred into Branko’s Warlock, Branko’s Ali- Baba, and Branko’s Hurricane Whipas.
That’s when he got Cottonville Road Its Bo Time, Briar MT Hurricane Maggie, and Cottonville Road No Mercy Percy. These dogs changed the game for Cottonville Road Kennel. Each of these dogs became Hunting Beagle Champions at a very young age and have wins on them now toward their Grand Hunting Beagle Champion position in the UKC. These dogs were selected based on how well they could run a rabbit when they were very young. Mike now owns Branko’s Hurricane Whipas ever since he purchased him from Curt Douglas back in 2014. Whip is the base of all his breeding. Every beagle that comes from Cottonville Road Kennel has some sort of tie to Whip. Whip is ranked third in the UKC’s top reproducing sires.
Mike starts training his pups at 8 weeks old. He starts out by getting them affiliated with his voice, scent, and presence.
“When I walk up to the kennel, I want that dog to be watching my every move. When I walk away, I want them to be watching my every move.”Mike Greene
He then at 3 months has them sight chase a pet rabbit. Then at four months he has them look and hunt for the caged rabbit with their nose. Still sight chasing, but using their nose to find the rabbit. Then at 4 and a half months he sends them to trainer Ted Clontz so they can be trained one on one. Once Ted calls Mike to come get his dog a few weeks later, that dog is ready to go out in the field and run with the big boys. Mike says he understands why some might think his training is a bit strict, but that’s what it takes to get champion beagles.
Mike first started feeding Joy Dog Food back in the fall of last year. Since making the switch from his previous feed, he has noticed tremendous changes within his dogs.
- “I run my dogs hard, about 60 miles a week, and never have I seen them look just as good and run just as good as they did on that first day then when I started feeding them Joy”
He was in awe over how great their coat looked, and how much energy they had after running nearly 60 miles throughout the week. He says that if you are going to train your dogs like athletes, you MUST fuel them as athletes which is why he fuels them with Joy Dog Food. Although everyone loves a winning dog, Mike’s greatest reward and drive to continue working with dogs is to see a puppy turn into a sharp, hard-working dog.
Mike is in the process of handing down his beagling side of his kennel to his nephew Xander Greene. With the rest of the kennel, which includes German Wirehair Pointers and Labrador Retrievers, and his preaching, he does not have as much time as he did before to really train and breed beagles. He is proud that his nephew is taking over this side of his business and carrying on the family tradition. You know what they say… Traditions Never Die.