Siberian Husky Bloodlines: SEPP-LOK

SEPP-LOK has become probably the most frequently encountered of the part-Seppala racing Siberian Husky bloodlines commonly thought to be "Seppalas." Due to the large number of animals produced and the extreme diversity of the matings involved, it is difficult to make general statements about SEPP-LOK. Almost anything one says about it will be found to have numerous exceptions. SEPP-LOK was begun in Utah by Orson and Lanette Kimball in 1988 as a satellite kennel of Doug Willett's SEPP-ALTA. Since then Ms. Kimball has continued breeding in various locations in the northwestern USA with various kennel affixes (Kimball, Riverdance, Sepp-Lok, Frosty Sage, etc.). The kennel has at various times also included Alaskan Malamutes, Alaskan Huskies, AH/Seppala crosses, etc.

Early SEPP-LOK litters were often by pure-Seppala Willett-owned sires on bitches of varied and mixed lineages. It may have been these litters, together with the initial physical proximity of the two kennels, that first gave rise to the rumour that "Sepp-Lok was Doug Willett's experimental farm." It seems obvious at least that there was some collaboration on breedings involving bitches of bloodlines not normally found within the Willett kennel.

There is no published narrative of Sepp-Lok breeding beyond the first five litters (included in the 1992 Willett booklet "The Sepp-Alta Siberian Husky"). Short of painstakingly compiling a database of litters working from known registered individual dogs (in this instance a task of little interest to the author of this series) it would not be easy to offer an accurate capsule history of Sepp-Lok breeding. Let us, then, try at least to cover some of the main points and prominent dogs.

The first litter, sired by UELEN'S BEOWULF OF SEPP-ALTA, was born 13 March 1989 out of a bitch from a "dual-purpose" show/race bloodline, Foxhaunt Diamond in the Ruff, giving rise (among others) to two males who made later contributions, Sepp-Lok's Ariok of Kimball and Sepp-Lok's Arooh of Alta. An even more important litter, though, was the fourth litter born 13 July 1990, by the rather young male Sepp-Lok's Ariok of Kimball from the previously mentioned litter, out of Vanessa of Alta, an "experimental" bitch from the Willett kennel sired by the Euroberian Minsten av Vargevass on the pure-Seppala bitch DYNAMIKOS RUBY. This litter contained Caliban of Kimball, Tazmania of Kimball and Sepp-Lok's Girl of Kimball, all of them important to later breeding.

Two other important early Sepp-Lok mixed-lineage brood bitches were Whirlaway of Sepp-Alta (by Kodiak's Valois ex Boreal's Minnie of Sepp-Alta) and Riv'ndell's Moka of Alta (by Velikaya Wylie of Kossa ex Tantoo of Sepp-Alta) -- both bitches roughly 64% unique-Seppala ancestry.

Scanning the voluminous Sepp-Lok output one can detect what seems to be a tendency to "grade up" from the mixed-lineage beginnings by breeding back to Markovo-Seppala lines; in many cases, of course, this fails to hold true, but the trend is at least arguable. One such breeding that produced an important Sepp-Lok female was the mating of SEPP-ALTA'S AKKOO (by OREO OF SEPP-ALTA ex PAINTER'S MOKKA OF SEPP-ALTA) to Tazmania of Kimball, producing Sepp-Lok's Wilderness Image (26 March 1993), a bitch who became very important to later Sepp-Lok breeding. The acquisition of the Markovo-Seppala RUFFO OF SEPP-ALTA (by ISHMAEL OF SEPP-ALTA ex NESTLY OF SEPP-ALTA), a brother of the highly-touted RACE, seems to have been important to Sepp-Lok. RUFFO sired a large amount of stock for the kennel, serving at least a dozen Siberian bitches and half as many Alaskan Huskies. Another significant male seems to have been Sepp-Lok's Yukon (by RIVER VIEW'S ANIMAL ex Feliz Navidog of Sepp-Aluk); Animal was Markovo-Seppala, the dam, a daughter of Rocky of Alta; Yukon has sired Sepp-Lok stock on at least six different bitches. There have been a few scattered pure-Seppala matings at Sepp-Lok, but these have been overwhelmingly the exception to the general rule. (RUFFO OF SEPP-ALTA has produced litters on SEPP-LOK'S QUECHE OF SEPP-ALTA and RIVER VIEW'S SCOOTER, both pure-strain bitches; there was also a 1992 litter by HERCULES OF SEPP-ALTA out of DILLY OF SEPP-ALTA.)

The watchword at SEPP-LOK seems to have been, "Try anything, try everything!" and for that reason perhaps its reputation as an "experimental farm" is not undeserved. To characterise the outpouring of Sepp-Lok racing Siberians would be difficult, beyond simply noting the great diversity of different matings of different kinds. The presence of pure-Seppala stock in many of the matings has been there from the beginning, but the outcome has been by and large more mixed-lineage part-Seppala racing Siberian Huskies. They are not Seppalas in the traditional sense of the word, inasmuch as the principles that governed the breeding of Harry Wheeler, Bill Shearer, and Donnie McFaul have consistently been ignored. Sepp-Lok bloodline has come to be of great influence in the ISSSC's ConKC population, with as many as perhaps 60% of the dogs in the population either bred by Sepp-Lok or showing Sepp-Lok influence in their pedigrees.

SAMPLE PEDIGREE -- Sepp-Lok's Wilderness Image (Opens in a new window.)
SAMPLE PEDIGREE -- Sepp-Lok's Saber (Opens in a new window.)