09/13/2006: The Long Road to New Breed RecognitionHistorically the United Kennel Club has been a forerunner in assisting the development and recognition of new breeds in the United States. However, bringing a breed to the place where it can be considered by the UKC can seem like a long and arduous process for those involved in it - as much about one step forward and two steps back as it is about anything. At the same time it can be one of the most positive and progressive periods the fanciers of the breed involved might ever experience. Please note, however, that I say this time can be positive and progressive.
08/11/2006: Soundness or Type - Which Is More Important?It seems the question, “Which is more important, soundness or type?” is one answered periodically and pretty conclusively, only to be raised time and time again. We can understand the why of the question – getting one or the other is far easier to come by than finding both to an acceptable degree in the same animal.
06/22/2006: CONSISTENT JUDGINGConsistent. It’s what exhibitors want a judge to be. Right? Perhaps. Unfortunately, I think there are some misconceptions as to what the word consistent really means.
05/22/2006: Books of KnowledgeMost UKC judges come from the breeders' ranks, and in my opinion, there couldn't be a better place for an aspiring judge to come from. There is absolutely no one more experienced at evaluating dogs on the basis of type than the breeder. In effect, the breeder begins judging with his first litter.
04/24/2006: Practical JudgingJudging dogs is simply expressing knowledge. Although it is easier for some individuals to do so than it is for others, there is really nothing mysterious about the ability to perform this function. Practically everyone involved with purebred dogs has need to judge them at one time or another.
04/24/2006: Never Underestimate the Power of A Toy DogThere are few dyed-in-the-wool dog fanciers unable to appreciate a well made dog of any of the *Toy breeds. Personally speaking I see the Toy breeds as the epitome of type. After all, for what reason, other than beauty, were most of them created?
03/02/2006: Inside the Judge’s MindThere stands the judge looking distinguished and profound. He walks back and forth, looks at a particular dog, walks away, then comes back to look again. Just what is going on his mind?
11/21/2005: Making a Breeding - to Make a BreedingAt times it seems like only yesterday that I was the new kid in dogs that had an obsession with American Cocker Spaniels. (Admittedly there are those other times when thinking back to those early days is like taking a trip back to the Dark Ages!) Then, I was like a sponge. I soaked up every word uttered by and between the celebrities of the breed.
10/21/2005: Dog Breeding, A Struggle Against MediocrityPart II. We previously discussed the difficulties that face today’s potential breeders, from those imposed by Mother Nature to the ones levied by state and community restrictions.
09/06/2005: Dog Breeding, A Struggle Against MediocrityMediocre,” “too plain,” “just ordinary.” We hear those criticisms all too often in purebred dogs. How can it be that the litter sired by a handsome multiple Best In Show winner, out of an exquisitely beautiful Champion bitch can best be described as completely uneventful? Is it the sire’s fault? The dam’s?