Saturday, December 27, 2008

SPIRIT TAKES ROUND ONE

The Giant Schnauzer, CH Galilee's Pure Of Spirit, has won Best In Show at today's Salinas Kennel Club show in San Mateo CA. The win put Spirit 1500 points closer to regaining the number one spot in the 2008 rankings. We also have reports that the Affenpinscher, CH Tamarin Tug, and the Brussels Griffon, CH Cilleine Masquerade, were entered, but absent and the Scottish Deerhound, CH Jaraluv Ouija, managed a Hound Group first over the country;s numbr one Hound, the Harrier, CH Downhome Family Tradition. More details to follow.

FLYING FICKLE FINGER OF FATE


For those of you who are old enough to remember the old comedy show, LAUGH IN, we revive the "Flying Fickle Finger of Fate" award for those who experience an extraordinary reversal of fortune. Just two weeks ago, the Pointer, CH Cookieland Seasyde Hollyberry, was on top of the dog world, winning the 2008 Eukanuba National Championship over an all champion field. Today, Holly, finished third in the Sporting Group at the Salinas Kennel Club show in San Mateo CA, her worst finish since Westminster. We will have a full report later.

2009 FIRST SHOWS

In the end of the year frenzy around the race for number one, we have neglected to draw your attention to the upcoming shows the first weekend of the new year. I’ve never been able to understand exactly why the Kennel Club of Palm Springs draws such a huge entry. Sure, the weather is just about the best on the planet, a perfect 70 degrees Fahrenheit in the middle of winter. Sure, the place exudes celebrity glamour, still haunted by the ghosts of Sinatra and the Rat Pack.

But a Mecca of dogdom? That eludes us. The actual show is at the polo field in Indio CA, some 125 miles due east of Los Angeles. However alluring the setting, it’s still out of the way for most people. Nonetheless, the counts are in and it looks as if Palm Springs may hold onto it’s number one ranking as the US’ largest dog show venue, with 3,131 dogs entered in the regular classes on Saturday, 3 January and 3,097 on Sunday. The entries are down substantially over the last two years, but we are still impressed. And you will be too if you decide to make the drive. Do you know how Californians tan the backs of their ears? They put the top down and drive away from the sun.

St. Paul MN in Winter

There are smaller, but substantial, entries in Florida, Minnesota, Ohio, South Carolina and Texas. There’s the Florida New Year Classic, a four day cluster beginning Friday in Deland FL hosted by the Greater Daytona and Jacksonville Dog Fanciers' Associations and a three day cluster, the Northern Ohio Winter Classic, in Tallmadge OH, sponsored by the Columbiana and Rubber City Kennel Clubs. There are two day shows in St. Paul MN, Glen Rose TX (about 75 miles SW of Dallas), and Pendleton SC. The Land O’Lakes Kennel Club (MN) shows will be the largest with entries of 1804 on Saturday. The Clemson Kennel Club (SC) shows will be the smallest with 1120 on Sunday.

And we will be here reporting it all, with new rankings and lots of new dogs to showcase!

Friday, December 26, 2008

ANIMAL RIGHTS EXTREMISTS CONVICTED

From the Associated Press:

A jury in Winchester, southern England, convicted Gerrah Selby, Daniel Wadham, Gavin Medd-Hall and Heather Nicholson of orchestrating a campaign against suppliers of Huntingdon Life Sciences between 2001 and 2007. They will be sentenced on Jan. 19 along with three people who earlier pleaded guilty to conspiracy to blackmail. Huntingdon Life Sciences has been a long-standing target of animal rights extremists.

The members of Stop Huntingdon Animal Cruelty, used threats such as claiming that company managers were pedophiles, sending hoax bombs, dumping paint stripper on an executive's car and making threatening telephone calls. Campaigners also mailed used sanitary towels to a company, claiming they were infected with the AIDS virus, and homes of company managers were daubed with slogans including "puppy killer" and "Bill the murderer."

The harassment would stop only when a company put out a "capitulation statement" to SHAC promising not to supply Huntingdon Life Sciences, which conducts animal testing for the pharmaceutical industry. Targeted companies included GlaxoSmithKline, Astellas, F2 Chemicals and Biocair, prosecutors said.

And you thought that they were just sweet little own ladies.

Thursday, December 25, 2008

MERRY CHRISTMAS AND HAPPY HOLIDAYS!


FROM BILLY WHEELER & THE DOG SHOW POOP FAMILY

Wednesday, December 24, 2008

CRUFTS NO, AHMADINEJAD YES


A Young Charles II with his Spaniels

OK, this is not exactly dog related, but there is a tie in to the BBC’s boycott of next year’s Cruft’s dog show. You may recall that we reported here that the BBC had cancelled the broadcast of the next Cruft’s dog show in a continuation of the BBC’s campaign against the purebred dog. Now we read here that Britain’s Channel Four will offer an alternative to Queen Elizabeth’s annual Christmas broadcast, a practice begun in 1993. This year’s alternative message will be provided by Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad. I have my own thoughts on the subject, but I defer to Ron Prosor, Israel’s Ambassador to Great Britain, who said, "In Iran, converts to Christianity face the death penalty. It is perverse that this despot is allowed to speculate on the views of Jesus, while his government leads Christ's followers to the gallows." But they can’t show the Cavalier King Charles (that’s Charles II, English monarch 1660-1685) Spaniel on TV. Now that’s perverse.

REGIONAL RANKINGS

We have decided to maintain a list of regional winners based on the location of the show. Now, that means a dog owned by a New Yorker and shown by a Californian handler could possibly be a regional winner in the Midwest, but we have a problem in identifying a dog’s legal address given how many multiple owners there are out there. Regions are identified as follows:

Region 1: Connecticut, Delaware, Maine, Massachusetts, New Hampshire, New Jersey, New York (East of the 77th meridian), Pennsylvania (East of the 77th meridian), Rhode Island, and Vermont.
Region 2: Alabama, District of Columbia, Florida, Georgia, Maryland, North Carolina, Puerto Rico, South Carolina, Tennessee (East of the Tennessee River), the U.S. Virgin Islands, and Virginia.
Region 3: Kentucky. Michigan, New York (West of the 77th meridian), Ohio, Pennsylvania (West of the 77th meridian), and West Virginia.
Region 4: Illinois, Indiana, Iowa, Kansas (North of the 38th parallel), Minnesota, Missouri, Nebraska, North Dakota, South Dakota, and Wisconsin.



Region 5: Arkansas, Colorado, Kansas, Louisiana, Mississippi, New Mexico, Oklahoma, Tennessee (West of the Tennessee River), Texas and Wyoming.
Region 6: Alaska, California (North of the 36th parallel), Idaho, Montana, Nevada (North of the 37th parallel), Oregon, Utah and Washington.
Region 7: Arizona, California (South of the 36th parallel), Hawaii, Nevada (South of the 37th parallel).

A dog will only receive an award in the region in which he/she has the most points. I want to make sure we recognize 70 separate dogs. The whole idea is to recognize as many of the great dogs around the country as we can. This will definitely be a work in progress. Though not identical to, it is based on the regions as drawn by the Cat Fanciers Association (CFA). Regional titles in CFA are highly coveted and assure that the maximum number of exhibitors are recognized for participating in sanctioned shows. Once again, this is all for fun. Don’t take it too seriously. We are open to suggestions for improvement, but don’t promise to incorporate all recommendations. So start looking for your dog’s name here in 2009!

Tuesday, December 23, 2008

JUDGING CHANGE

We have a judging change in one of our San Mateo BIS judges. Dorothy M. MacDonald of Carmel Valley CA will replace Kimberly Meredith-Cavanna for the Oakland Kennel Club show on 30 December. You may recall that Ms Meredith-Cavanna was the one judge this coming weekend who had frequently seen our top ten dogs this year. In five BIS assignments this year, Ms MacDonald has encountered our top ten only once, at the Greater Fredericksburg Kennel Club show last April 4th in Fredericksburg VA. At that show she put up the Pekingese, CH Pequest Match Point in a final that included the Pointer, CH Cookieland Seasyde Hollyberryand, the Sealyham Terrier, CH Efbe's Hidalgo At Goodspice. As we get closer to the dramatic end of the year shows, the suspense just keeps building and you will read about it here first.

ANNOUNCING THE DOG SHOW POOP RANKINGS

All of our readers know that we are fans of dog show rankings. We wouldn’t have dog shows if we weren’t interested in competition. It appeals to our sense of order and fairness. It is that latter characteristic that prompts us to announce the Dog Show Poop Rankings.



Starting in 2009 we will post our own rankings based on performance at AKC dog shows. We do this for a number of reasons. We want to recognize some of those dogs owned by the average dog show exhibitor, the exhibitor who doesn’t have a trust fund, the exhibitor who has a regular job and can’t make it to 150 shows a year, the exhibitor who doesn’t have access to a corporate jet to show in four cities in four days. Bottom line, we think if you give the average exhibitor (our version of Plumber Joe) some recognition, we might encourage more people to enter an AKC dog show.

We have developed a ranking system that tries to correct some of the inequities inherent in the current system.

  1. We will count only all breed shows. 
  2. We will score each group win equal to the win in the other groups. Said another way, a Group One in the Working Group will count the same as the Group One In the Herding Group at the same show. The current rankings count all the dogs that competed in the breeds that day. Therefore, a dog, unopposed in a breed, can go forward to the group and get credit for defeating dogs he/she never faced. To illustrate the inequity, consider this; the average Working Group winner gets 21 percent of the points at a show, while the average Terrier Group Winner gets eight percent, even though the former has faced 25 opponents in the group and the latter has faced 26. Group winners will be awarded four points. Group Two gets three points, Group Three two, and Group Four one. BIS will get the sum of the group wins, 28 points (Seven Groups at four points each) because a Best In Show is really, really special.
  3. We will give extra points for big shows. Shows up to 1,000 dogs will score as out lined above. One additional point will be added to each win for every additional 250 dogs showing, i.e., BIS at a show with 1,000 dogs is worth 28, 1,250 is worth 35, 1,500 42, etc.

Now, we will still track and report the traditional rankings. We are not populist extremists wishing to overthrow the dog world elite nor do we harbor any delusions about who we are. The traditional rankings are important and we respect that. However, remember, these lists, like dog shows, are recreation. So don’t take them too seriously. Have fun with them. Our intent is to encourage you out there to get enthusiastic about dog shows.

Monday, December 22, 2008

MORE ON SAN MATEO JUDGES

OK, I have known about this for some time, but I have not posted it because I did not want the simple facts of the situation to become a commentary. However, my mission is to keep the dog show going public informed. I, am therefore, just putting this out to all of you as an interesting coincidence.

Honey Glendinning
Sporting Group Judge, Oakland Kennel Club

Digging deeper into the judges slated for the San Mateo shows, I noticed that Honey Glendinning of Delta, British Columbia, Canada, is scheduled to judge the Sporting Group at the Oakland Kennel Club show on 30 December. She, along with husband, Rick, also an AKC judge, are owners of Fantail Kennels (English Setters). Honey is also the sister of Taffe McFadden, handler of the Giant Schnauzer, CH Galilee's Pure Of Spirit. Honey, in all likelihood, will be placed in the thankless position of deciding if the Pointer, CH Cookieland Seasyde Hollyberry, will advance to face her sister’s charge in a final seven that could possibly decide who is the AKC’s 2008 Number One Dog.

After 40 years following AKC dogs, I am confident that all the judges will behave professionally and all the handlers will act graciously. Call me na├»ve, but it’s just the way I like to see it.

Sunday, December 21, 2008

BBC PULLS THE PLUG ON CRUFTS

Once again the British Broadcasting Corporation (BBC) has capitulated to the animal rights wackadoodles. The BBC, that venerable institution of all things British, has announced that it will not broadcast the Crufts Dog Show, a British institution since 1886, long before the BBC. The BBC had demanded that the British Kennel Club, the equivalent of our AKC, ban twelve “at risk” breeds from competition at Crufts: the Clumber Spaniel, the Basset Hound, the Bloodhound, the Dogue de Bordeaux, the Mastiff, the Neapolitan Mastiff, the Pekingese, the Shar-Pei, the Chow Chow, the German Shepherd Dog, the Bulldog, the Saint Bernard, the Cavalier King Charles Spaniel and the Rhodesian Ridgeback. The Kennel Club admirably refused to ban the named breeds and the BBC pulled the plug.


For those who don’t know, Crufts is the world’s largest dog show with a remarkable 22,000 dogs competing. That’s seven times the size of our largest show. Last year the British TV audience alone was over 14 million. You would think that alone would let you know on which side the British people are on this debate. Yet, the PETA thugs run about pretending they represent the public. The British are legendarily reserved, but they better get off their butts before there is not a dog left in England. Ban the Bulldog? Churchill must be turning over in his grave.

For all of you isolationists out there that think we here in the US are exempt from such extreme interference in our lives, visit the PETA site and read the lies and slander these anti pure bred dog trolls spread after the 2008 Westminster broadcast, alleging that the winner, the Beagle, Uno, and the other finalists were carriers of multiple life threatening congenital defects. I can remember one Westminster show in the 1970s where they invited several previous BIS and Group winners back including the Miniature Pinscher, Ch Rebel Rod's Casanova Von Kurt, the 1963 Toy Group winner. He was 14 years old at the time and still covered the big ring without missing a step. It is simply a myth that pure bred dogs are less healthy than mixed breeds. Making dogs better is what we breeders do. That includes breeding out health problems.