Exclusive Interview with Michael Wright
Today we interview Michael Wright. An American Bull Dog owner who competes in the sports of weight pulling.
My name is Michael Wright, I was born and raised in North Central North Carolina. Growing up my family raised boxer so I always had Dog Fever.
I got my apbt when I was in my mid 20's. When I got my dog I knew nothing about weight pull or any other dog sport for that matter. But I knew the bad rap that the dogs got and I wanted to be able to do something different with my dog. So began my journey in the weight pull world, little did I know this is where I would end up. I trained with a buddy of mine , Timmy Jackson.
Timmy raises American Bulldogs. After several years in the sport, Timmy had bred some of his stock and offered me a pup. Not knowing anything about American Bulldogs I passed. A few months after the litter was born, Timmy and I was on a trip to a competition and he mentioned that the pup his wife had picked (Gambit) needed a home, and that he wanted him to go to a working home. I thought about it but wasn't sure.
After a couple days of receiving pictures of Gambit I agreed to take him in and work him. The only wish he and his wife had was to not change his name. Lol. So I honored their wish. Soon after I started working with him I knew he had something special. At 10 months old Gambit and I went to APA Nationals only for the experience.
Surprisingly he placed 4th out of 20+ dogs in his weight class. The following 2 years he placed 2nd in his weight class. Also became the first American Bulldog to win a National Championship in the ADBA Registry. Gambit is a great all around dog with a heart of a lion, and a personality that is unmatched.
We have a bond that you get once in a life time with a dog. But our story has just begun. We also have another up and coming Puller here "No Limit Pullerz" his name is Talon he is out of the world Famous "Hosfelts Dupree" can't wait to see what the future hold for this boy,we have high hopes.
Hello Michael, we appreciate you taking the time to do this interview and give us some insight on what has made you successful in the sport of weight pulling.
Q.) What was it that made you fall in love with dogs and why did you choose the American Bulldog? I have always had a passion for dogs, going up we raised Boxer, and in my late 20's I got my first APBT . My first American Bulldog was actually gave to me. From there I really bonded well with the breed. But have always been a fan of bully breeds.
Q.) How did you get involved in the sport of weight pulling?
2. I got into weight pull after getting my first APBT , I wanted to do something positive with the breed, because of all the negative publicity they get. So done my home work made some phone calls, met people , next thing I know I am addicted.Q.) Tell us a little bit about your first experience in the sport and why you fell in love with it?
3. My first experience with weight pull was fun, I could tell there was a lot to learn and that it wasn't going to happen over night. And like a lot of people , I started off trying to train an adult dog , which is a LOT harder than training a puppy. But I saw the bond that the pullers had with their dogs and knew that this is where I wanted to be with my dog.Q.) In your opinion who do you think is the top dog right now and why?
4. This is a tough sport to pick one dog that you would say is on top. But there are a couple that stick out in my mind that are legends. Brian Hosfelt's Dupree, and Mike Apaga's H.P. With that being said there are tons of great dogs past and present that could be argued the greatest.Q.) What has been your most memorable moment and biggest accomplishment thus far?
5. As of right now our greatest accomplishment was 2014 , Being the first American Bulldog to win an ADBA National title, since it was an APBT registry for so long. 2014 65-75lb Male National Champion.
Q.) What is your goal when it comes to the sport or have you reached it? 6. My main objective is to win an UPF National Title, is has eluded us, we have placed 2nd , 2 years running and it would be great to break that streak!
Q.) How do you prepare for an event such as Nationals? 7. When preparing for Nationals, we begin training real light about 8 weeks out, at 6 weeks out we then pick thing up and really kick things into gear. Typically dragging weight at least 3 days a week, lots of tread mill work. Will throw some track training in about once a week, and of coarse FETCH , Gambit loves to play fetch and you have to keep it fun for the dog. Once your about a week out , we slow things down and only do light drag from this point up u til travel begins. Diet and exercise plays a huge factor in this time as well.
Q.) Give 2 to 3 tips that every new American Bulldog owner should be aware of and know? Anyone thinking about getting an American Bulldog should first prepare themselves by doing some research and meeting as many as possible before making the leap. The breed is an overall a very protective breed by nature and isn't for everyone.
Q.) What is the number one advice you can give someone new when owning an American Bulldog who is interested in competing in weight pulling?
The biggest piece of advice I can give to anyone who wants to weight pull , no matter what breed of dog they chose to do it with , is take your time and do not rush! It's so easy to over load a dog and push him beyond his or her limits before they are mentally ready.
Q.) Do you have anyone that you would like to shout out or give thanks to? 10. I would like to thank Timmy & Beth Jackson! Gambit was bred by Timmy and Beth, and he was Beth's pick. She had began school and found out they had a little one on the way and they gave Gambit to me with only one condition, and that was to not change his name. He is a very special dog, he has a heart of a lion. I never have to worry about if he will give me 100% or not. He loves his job and he loves to make me happy. So I owe tons of Thanks and appreciation to those two.