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Publishers Jovana Danilovic Ruth Rauherz Managing Editor Ruth Rauherz editor@bestinshowmagazine.com Art Director Jovana Danilovic jovana@bestinshowmagazine.com Marketing Manager Juraj Sokolic ads@bestinshowmagazine.com Contributin Writers Anne Tureen, Richard Hellman, Juha Kares, Karl Donvil, Lisa Croft-Elliott Jovana Danilovic, Bo Bengtson, Ante Lucin, Viltė Šokaitytė, Mihaela Kosic Contributing Photographers Selene Favretto, Karl Donvil, Anna Szabo, Lisa Croft-Elliott, Jeffrey Hanlin, Tommaso Urciuolo, Jovana Danilovic Web Designers Jovana Danilovic Sanja Jukic Printed by GrafoMark d.o.o

intro Dear Best in Show readers and followers, time really flies! It is time for the 16th edition of Best in Show Magazine. In this edition you will be able to enjoy beautiful photos from shows around the Europe including reports from Crufts , three shows in Milano, two beautiful Blue lagoon shows in Malta, Madrid Mandatory show and Sighthound Specialities from Sweden and Finland. As well there are lovely articles which is one of them written by Anne Tureen “Annie on dogs”, interview with Vilte Sokaityte - not only a Junior Handler but a member of our team, interview with a handler Juraj Sokolic, interview with Luciano Bocchese - Terrier Legend from Italy, interviews with Whippet and Greyhound breeders and much more. I truly hope you will enjoy spending time reading our new edition with a cup of coffee or tea until our next edition which will be ready for the World Dog Show in Germany. Enjoy!

Questions and feedback: Conaros Sportmanagement AG Landstrasse 58, 9494 Schaan, Liechtenstein

E-mail: ads@bestinshowmagazine.com Web: www.bestinshowmagazine.com While every effort is made to ensure the accuracy of this publication, the publisher Conaros Sportmanagement AG can not accept liability for any statement or error contained herein. Best In Show Magazine cannot accept responsibility for the claims, goods or services of advertisers. No part of this magazine, inckluding texts, photographs, illustrations, maps or any other graphics may be reproduced in any other way without the prior written consent of Conaros Sportmanagement AG.

Best in Show Magazine

Jovana Danilovic publisher & art director


Content

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Crufts 2017

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Luciano Bocchese

58

Shows in Milano

86

Vilte Sokaityte

100

Literary Dog

108

Blue Lagoon shows

136

Vitality indicators

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Madrid IDS

158

Meet the breeds: Whippet & Greyhound

by Karl Donvil

Terrier Legend from Italy

3 International Dog Shows Intervie with Junior Handler by Anne Tureen

Report from Malta by Juha Kares

Report from the Mandatory Point Show

Interviews with breeders

Sokolic Interview with handler 234 Juraj

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2017 Crufts 2017 WHAT IF CRUFTS.... by Karl Donvil

This year’s edition was once more a success with 21.838 entries. It is never clear to me if this is the real number of dogs or if this is the number of entries, are this the dogs for the show only or for all competitions, and what about the participating dogs for Scruffs (mixed breeds). How absolute this number is, is not at all clear. If I open the catalog and have a look on the breeds I see a significant difference between number of dogs and number of entries, just because dogs can be entered in more than one class while for the FCI a dog can only be entered in one single class. I tried to count them and I came up with a total that is significantly larger for the number of entries. So I presume it must be the number of dogs. On the contrary, in the press map we can read “taking part in breed judging, Gamekeepers’classes and the Obedience and Agility Championships”. So, what about the claim to be the biggest dog show in the World? The biggest FCI World Shows and European Shows show often similar numbers. The World Dog Show of Russia had 26.500 dogs in competition. All shows are acting somewhat mysterious about the numbers of dogs. The FCI shows sometimes include de club shows and breed specialties. Is it important? No, not really, except that Crufts is registered in the Guinness Book of Records as the biggest show in the world, and that seems of utmost importance for the Kennel Club. But what if England applies more difficult rules as a consequence of the Brexit? What would the result be if most of the 3.469 entries from overseas will no longer come over? That would be a real disaster with numbers going down under 20.000! 24

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But no worries, at least not so far. Foreign exhibitors like to qualify for Crufts and come over to compete. And who cares what is the biggest show ever? The number of overseas entries increase year after year because people can travel more easily and cheaper than ever (and that will affect all the big continental shows too). But Crufts is special, as is winning at Crufts, as is participating at Crufts, as is visiting Crufts. The magic continues. The number of foreign entries increased with 2% compared to last year and the number of countries climbed from 47 to 55 with dogs from Puerto Rico, Georgia, Guadeloupe and Réunion. The biggest invasion came from France with 418 dogs, Italy next with 373, then the Netherlands with 327 and Republic Ireland with 305. The United Kingdom itself had 18.369 entries and we have to go down the list to the 18th place to see the very first non-European country, the United States with 39 entries and again to the 28th place to find the second, Japan with 11 entries. From the 56 countries, 20 countries were intercontinental countries but they represent only 90 entries. That means that we can conclude that Crufts is not more international than most of the FCI big shows. Finland 58 countries in 2014 and 21247 dogs entered. But it is no secret that the British are very chauvinist. Two new breeds compete this year and that sets the foreign doors more open of course, as those breeds are recognized much earlier overseas. Suppose next year the Kennel Club would accept all FCI recognized breeds, I think we would have easily 1000 more foreign participants. At least there is a tendency to


adopt more and more breeds that are recognized by the FCI. Maybe it would be an option to accept all the FCI breeds but not give them CC’s until there are sufficient dogs entered on shows. That would dim the popularity of certain breeds like what happens with the French Bulldog. In only one year there was an increase of 47% . The breed had 21.470 puppy registrations over the last year, almost equal to the Cocker Spaniel, and that worries the Kennel CLub! The Labrador Retriever still takes the first place with 33.856 registrations, but still. How long till the Frenchie surpasses the Labrador. In 2007, not even ten years ago, there were only 670 registrations, that’s an increase with 5053% ! The Miniature Smooth Dachshunds has doubled too in 10 years, while the Smooth Chihuahua has tripled. People are very sensitive to certain trends, imitating celebrities or movies. That proves that people don’t mind about the breed that much, as long as it is popular and trendy. The Westie and the Cavalier King Charles Spaniel dropped out of the top ten list, another proof that trends define the number of puppy registrations. The Kennel Club does everything it can to counter trends, bringing certain alternative breeds

for the Frenchie into the spotlights like the Beagle, Miniature Schnauzer, certain Terriers and even Poodles, but a French Bulldog has no equal. It is a breed that fits for the testosterone types amongst us, as well as for the more female oriented of our society. They have a cute face, lots of expression and are easy to keep. Of course, short faced breeds can have health problems. Breeds that come closer are the pug and the Boston Terriers, but of course they risk the same problems or already have them. Anyway, the Kennel Club is not only concerned but they make efforts to follow up the breeders and owners with information and their Assured Breeder Scheme for the protection and welfare of the puppies and breeding bitches. Other concerns are the British and Irish vulnerable that they like to promote. On Friday there is the KC Vulnerable breeds finals. A very good initiative, although it would be better on Saturday or even on Sunday in order to reach a lot more spectators. A closer look on this list shows that an important part of those breeds are big, another are Terrier types and another part are Spaniels. But most of them are relatively easy to have in the house, don’t need special treatment or Best in Show Magazine

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trimming, they are only no longer “trendy”. Imagine that there were only 28 Skye Terrier registrations and only 40 Otterhounds. Bringing them into the limelight will certain favor these breeds. Crufts gives a good impression on what is popular in Britain and certainly the Labrador Retriever still wears the crown with 555 entries, the French Bulldogs came not close yet. There were 282. The Whippet is also very popular with 386 entries, as is the Staffordshire Bull Terrier with 369 dogs in the ring. The Cavalier King Charles Spaniel is still very popular with an entry of 311 in contrast with his cousin the King Charles that belongs to the vulnerable breeds with only 84 registrations last year. Unfortunately there is no complete list of the number of entries of all the breeds. This is the first edition of Crufts where the Cesky Terrier and the Spanish Water dog can compete of CC’s, while the Jack Russell Terrier and Great Swiss Mountain Dog are shown for the first time. The Russian Toys are recognized by the Kennel Club for the first time and also for the first time we could see a Braque d’Auvergne in Discover Dogs. Worth mentioning is the Good Citizen Dog Scheme program that was established by the Kennel Club and was presented at Crufts 25 years ago for the very first time. The GCDS is without any doubt the most successful achievement of the Kennel Club and the UK’s largest dog training programe. 160,000 Visitors were expected and Television makes all the difference in the world ,for the popularity of a dog show. Channel 4 an More4 were broadcasting 11,5 hours with highlights and a live program of the finals every day, alike in the good old days of BBC. On Thursday we had the Eukanuba World Challenge Opening Ceremony. It is the 10th edition of this Challenge. The first years the show was held in the States, Longbeach first and Orlando a couple of years later. It then moved to Amsterdam for the past two years and now it was

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a good opportunity to organize it along with the world’s most famous show, Crufts. Only 33 selected dogs from 5 different countries are in competition for the final prize of 7500 EURO. They were judged by 3 judges for the semi-finals, Liz Cartledge from the UK, Carmen Navarro from Spain and JeanJacques Dupas from France while the grand final judge, to be chosen on Friday, was Mr.Laurent Pichard from Switzerland. There are lots of critique on this show due to the way dogs are selected and because it is linked to a world famous brand, leaving little or no chance to dogs fed on other food. Is it true or not, I leave it to the reader. I just wonder where our shows would end if tomorrow we have a Royal Canine World Challenge and a James Wellbeloved World Challenge, or any other brand World Challenge, etc, etc.? On Thursday we also had the judging of the Terrier Group and the Hound Group. In fact there are lots of competitions in the Arena during the day as in other halls. Agility and Flyball, Heelwork to Music and numerous other presentations, enough entertainment. The Eukanuba finals were on Friday as told as was the Vulnerable breeds Competition Finals. Groups on Friday were the Utility and the Toy. Only one Group for Saturday, the Gundog Group, but that leaves time for Agility, Heelwork to Music finals, and of course Junior Handling and the Kennel Club Breeders Competition. There is something I don’t understand, the Junior Handling competition is perhaps the most international of all the competitions at Crufts with participants from 43 different countries but there is hardly information to be found, nothing in the Crufts Show Guide and one page with only the countries in the catalog of the day, no names or whatever. Junior Handling was first organized in England and is embraced by all the Kennel Clubs in the world. Strange...! Judge for this item was Mr.Vesa Lehtonen from Finland. The Kennel Club Breeders Competi-


tion is back and it is a popular item, always nice to see, 56 Teams were in competition , judged by Mrs.E.A. Macdonald. Saturday and Sunday are always the busiest day and there was a general impression that it was already busy on Thursday and Friday too with regard to visitors. But it was also a general impression that there was less money spent compared to other years, at least hat’s what I heard from some trade stand holders. In fact there was little or nothing new on the market and the big brands have less to give away. I am always astonished about the new food brands popping up every year. The Show Guide is thicker and heavier this year and has more publicity. I wonder why the price did not drop. The printing should be paid with the publicity and sold for a minimum price. It has so much valuable information inside for the visitors that it is so important that people buy it and take it home. The price now is 8£ and together with the entry fee (between 18£ and 21£, free under 12) and possible catalogs (that costs 8£ too) could be just too much for an average family budget. Walking around is not easy, Crufts takes more than 25 acres of the National Exhibitions Centre at Birmingham, and going from one end to another can take a while unless you know the shortcuts. The Arena is filling up as the Finals come closer. There is a lot on schedule, the Working and Pastoral Groups need to be judged first, and before that there is the Agility Championship finals and the Friends for life contest. The BIS program starts with the usual and obligatory show of Mary Ray, celebrating her 25 years of Heelwork to Music with a dance on “Singing in the Rain”. While all other program items are included in the ticket price, the finals are to be paid extra and tickets are required). The West Midlands Police demonstration is also much appreciated and rather spectacular with real cars etc. But we were all getting really excited when the lights went out

and the Royal Military Clarooners came up, the sign that soon we would know who will be crowned Crufts BIS winner 2017. Judge is Jeff Horswell who started with Great Danes but made Miniature Wire Haired Dachshunds his favorite breed. He started judging in 82 and gives CC’s in breeds of all the 7 Groups. His winner was the Gundog Group winner, American Cocker Spaniel CH.Afterglow Miami Ink owned by Mr.J. & Mr.R. Lynn & Da Silva. His runner up is the Miniature Poodle Minarets Best Kept Secret owned by Mrs.M. Harwood. We know it now, both nice dogs, worthy winners and we also know that Crufts’s magic will invade us again next year. If Crufts is the biggest show in absolute terms or not, is less important to me. For me Crufts is in many ways the best show in the world and certainly the most famous. Crufts is “THE” place to make connections worldwide, to see the friends from all over the globe. That power is so strong that most of us come back year after year. See you next year then!

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Judged by Mrs Fiona Coward Scholes

1st place

2place nd

3place rd

CH AFTERGLOW MIAMI INK American Cocker Spaniel

Owned by J. & R. Lynn & Da Silva

CH ALTAFLATS AIN’T I’’M A DOG Flat Cated Retriever Owned by I. Wiesener

CH ESMEE DRAGON FROM RHONA’S HOME AT BAREVE German Wire Haired Pointer

Owned by S. Pinkerton

4place th

CH LOURDACE FULCRUM Gordon Setter

Owned by D. & D. & J. Alcorn, Crowther & Baddeley


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CH FROSTY SNOWMAN

Judged by Mr Graham Hill

1st place

2place nd

Grand Basset Griffon Vendeen

Owned by G. M. & P. Huikeshoven & Reid

CH COLLOONEY TARTAN TEASE Whippet

Owned by Mr & Mrs Short

3place rd

CH DONNERHALL DELLA BASSA PAVESE Irish Wolfhound

Owned by Dr. L. Salamon

CH DIALYNNE PETER PIPER

4place th

Beagle

Owned by M. Spavin


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Judged by Mr Robin Newhouse

1st place

2place nd

3place rd

4place th

CH ARYAKAS PEGASOS Old English Sheepdog

Owned by N. Kanales

WEETONEON POLLY FLINDERS Hungarian Puli

Owned by C. M. Knight

CH JOSETER MR BLOBBY Welsh Corgi Cardigan

Owned by P. Klifton

CH VENEZE GUCCI German Shepherd Dog

Owned by J. Cullen


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Judged by Mr Don Munro

1st place

2place nd

3place rd

4place th

SAREDON ENIGMA Lakeland Terrier

Owned by J. & A. Schembi & T. Barker

BELLEVUE THUNDER BOLT West Highland White Terrier

Owned by K. & S .VVan Der Veen

CH DARIANT EGYPT Dandie Dinmont Terrier

Owned by Mr. Keranen

CH DANDY BLACK & BLUE JUST FOR BALBOA Kerry Blue Terrier

Owned by Ensell & Tasselli


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Judged by Mrs Zena Thorn-Andrews

1st place

2place nd

3place rd

CH MY PRECIOUS JP KAGAYAKI Yorkshire Terrier

Owned by C. & H. Kadowaki

LARWINSCA LADY GUINEVERE Chihuahua Long Haired Owned by L. Adams

CH PAMPLONA JUST MAGIC Bichon Frise

Owned by M. Coad

LIMARTINE RAGE IN RED

4place th

Australian Silky Terrier

Owned by J. L. Mault


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Judged by Mr Derek Smith

1st place

2place nd

3place rd

4place th

MINARETS BEST KEPT SECRET Miniature Poodle

Owned by M. Harwood

CH STECAL’S LOVE AT FIRST SIGHT

Akita Owned by Bevis & Corr

CH EVAK’S WATERMARK Toy Poodle

Owned by N. Mankova & A. Stepkina

MAYWEATHER DE ARONUI ARDHUB French Bulldog

Owned by L. McGroarty


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CH MERRYBEAR D’ARTAGNAN

Judged by Mrs Meg Purnell-Carpenter

1st place

Newfoundland

Owned by L. & T. Chapman

AMICUS OPTIMUS VITALIS

2place nd

Leonberger

Owned by A. Mikhaleva

CH JOJAVIK MIDNIGHT EXPRESS Doberman

3place rd

Owned by J. A. . Ingram

4place th

CH HI SEAS DR ROMEO MACDUFF Portuguese Water Dog

Owned by L. G. Newfton


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1st place CH AFTERGLOW MIAMI INK American Cocker Spaniel

Owned by J. Lynn & Da Silva

2place nd MINARETS BEST KEPT SECRET Miniature Poodle

Owned by M. Harwood


Story about Luciano Bocchese Great Terrier Man from Italy Written by Anne Tureen

I remember my first show, I was 14 years old, and at that time the Milan show was held in the public gardens of the city, the judge was French, and she liked my dog which was a Fox Terrier lent me by a friend for the occasion. I guess that was encouragement enough because soon I had several dogs which I started keeping at my parent’s place near Milano. My parents didn’t mind that, they raised chickens so there was plenty of space. Certainly preparing and presenting dogs was an unusual thing for a young person to take on at the time, but soon I had 40/50/60 dogs and I was quite involved. One day I met a gentleman from England, Billy Mitchel and he took a liking to me. I must have been about 18, and he started having me with him all the time, teaching me this and that, and I became what today you might call his assistant, taking care of everything from the car to the hotel, all the little things, I took in his every move, and sure enough I had his own hand in preparing a dog after a while. Ha! I learned that sort of thing far better than the

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language, my English was never very good, but I managed. I started bringing dogs back to Italy, and I was able to sell them to wealthy people interested in this sport who wanted the very best. I could sell a dog at the time for 20/30 million Lire. No quality dog could go for less than 5 thousand pounds which was good money. People were willing to invest in this sport at that period. I kept these dogs on for my clients and groomed and presented them. I had many memorable clients, the lawyer Bennelli in Florence was one of my great clients. He had about 250 dogs of all breeds in his kennel, from the Basset Hounds to the Mastino Napoletano; and his wife had terriers: Fox, Welsh, Scottish. I prepared them and presented them for her. I was beginning to become famous since the results of certain shows such as Florence, Rome or Milan were written up in the newspapers, and so even more people were interested in buying dogs. I met Peter Green over 50 years ago. He always gave


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me a hand, advice for all manner of thing, from medicine to temperament correction. He was truly a great man. On top of that we shared this love of terriers. You know Yorkshires were all the rage at one point, but there were problems with the coloring, certain colors were not accepted. Peter gave me some tips and soon I was the Yorkshire man in Italy. Everyone brought their dogs to me to be prepared for the show and I went on to present many as well. I could afford to say ‘no’ at that point, and so if a dog was not top quality, I would prepare it and then hand it on to another handler for the show. I bought a male Yorkshire pup once at 6 months of age who went on to be a top winner, there was also a super Fox and some lovely Smooths. At some shows I would have my own dogs placed 1st, 2nd, and 3rd in the terrier group, all mine! Smooth Fox Terriers were all but unknown. Once a Smooth breeder in Trieste used a French bitch that I loved, and he mentioned in passing that he had sold a quality pup to a family who lived in the mountains; that’s all, a family had asked him for a puppy and he just gave them one, and that’s all he knew. I started spending all my time driving around the mountains in the North of Italy asking about the puppy and do you know- I found it! I even managed to buy it from the family and that pup became the first Smooth Fox Terrier to win Best in Show in this country. I collaborated with Stefania Savini when she was starting out and was able to get her some very nice dogs, which she went on to breed quite well. After a while you started to see 30/40 Smooths in a ring. Today if you see three or four it is a big class. When families had promoted a dog and done some winning for two or three years they were ready to move on to a new dog. They just left the former one with me and I gifted it to a friend here or there then I went over to the UK to find a new dog. People didn’t have much faith in a dog bred in Italy. Across the board they would prefer lesser quality but English bred to top quality but coming from their own country! A young man who was one of my assistants fell in love with a beautiful Labrador I had. He worked very hard in that breed and has brought it to the

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top, winning Crufts and really making a name for our country. That was Barbieri of course, a talented young man. I enjoyed having young people come round to learn something just as I had learned from others at the beginning. I have pursued this sport until the very end, it is a passion that never fades. Today I am here to watch the Wire Fox Terriers, it is a bit tiring, but the fire burns within, and here I am. -----This interview was made on 1 Nov 2016 at the IDS Insubria. After speaking with me Mr. Bocchesi was called to see the Terriers enter the ring and we made an appointment for a longer interview at his home for the following month. In December I spoke with his wife who told me he was feeling a bit under the weather, could we pick up where we left off after Christmas? We spoke a couple of times over the phone in the new year but there was never good news concerning his health, and on 2 March 2017 Luciano Bocchese passed from this life. He had forged the way for future professional handlers in Italy but he had also brought the country to understand something about Terriers. He graced our rings with top quality Wire Fox Terriers which were in vogue, and enriched that sphere with previously rare breeds such as the Smooth Fox Terrier, Lakeland and Cairn. Ever associated with the Kennel Club of Italy (ENCI) he also worked hard for the Terrier Association (SIT) organizing Terrier shows in his native area of Cimbro near Milan, as well as some of the first field trial competitions. He dedicated many years to professional involvement in the development of dry dog food in Italy and he also opened one of the first stores in the country dedicated entirely to pet needs. His greatest achievement perhaps remains handling which he brought to the professional level, with top quality dogs imported by him, always immaculately groomed and presented, abilities which he generously shared with upcoming generations through the years.

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GROUP W I N N E R S GROUP 1 WYNSILOT WILSON FOR MAT ‘N NIK OLD ENGLISH SHEEPDOG

OWNED BY NICOLAS KANALES & MATTEO AUTOLITANO JUDGED BY RONY DOEDIJNS (NL)

GROUP 2 BLU EMPEROR OF NEWFOUNDLAND HILLS NEWFOUNDLAND

OWNED BY DE VITTO DOMENICO JUDGED BY LA ROCCA FABRIZIO (IT)

GROUP 3 TOUCHSTAR GOSSIP MAKER JACK RUSSELL TERRIER

OWNED BY FRANCESCA SCORZA (I) JUDGED BY BOJAN MATAKOVIC (HR)

GROUP 4 THOR DEL WANHELSING DACHSHUND MINIATURE WIRE

OWNED BY SILVESTRO DEBORA JUDGED BY DE GIULIANI CLAUDIO (IT)


GROUP W I N N E R S GROUP 5 XOLOMANIA VITTORIA

MEXICAN HAIRLESS DOG STANDARD

OWNED BY BRICHIKOVA OLGA JUDGED BY VICTOR LOBAKIN (AZ)

GROUP 6 CHENIL D’ANJA BERNHARD HOLLANDE GRAND BASSET GRIFFON VENDÉEN

OWNED BY SEGATO GABRIELLA JUDGED BY FULGENZI GIANNI (IT)

GROUP 7 FIKRET´S FEEL THE FIRE

BRACCO ITALIANO, WHITE-ORANGE

OWNED BY TENHUNEN MARIKA JUDGED BY ALESSANDRA GIUSEPPE (IT)

GROUP 8 LOBO DEIGINI

AMERICAN COCKER SPANIEL

OWNED BY ALLEVAMENTO DEIGINI JUDGED BY ASNAGHI FERDINANDO (IT)


GROUP W I N N E R S GROUP 9 STANDING ROOM ONLY DELL’ALBERICO LHASA APSO

OWNED BY D’AMORE LARA JUDGED BY RAYMOND SOULAT (FR)

GROUP 10 RUSSKIY AZART CERARUS VALIANT INVICTUS BORZOI

OWNED BY LAZAREVA MARIA JUDGED BY ROBERTO VELEZ-PICO (PR)

BEST IN SHOW W I N N E R STANDING ROOM ONLY DELL’ALBERICO LHASA APSO

OWNED BY D’AMORE LARA JUDGED BY VANDONI GUIDO (ITALY)


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GROUP W I N N E R S GROUP 1 WYNSILOT WILSON FOR MAT ‘N NIK OLD ENGLISH SHEEPDOG

OWNED BY NIKOLAS KANALES & MATTEO AUTOLITANO JUDGED BY TINO PEHAR (HR)

GROUP 2 KOKO DEL DHARMAPURI SPANISH MASTIFF

OWNED BY ALLEVAMENTO DEL DHARMAPURI JUDGED BY CHRISTOFER HABIG (DE)

GROUP 3 CH. RED BULL DE LA VILLA Y CORTE YORKSHIRE TERRIER

OWNED BY MESTO MARTIN / SALAS MELERO ANA / CARLOS JUDGED BY KARI JARVINEN (FI)

GROUP 4 THOR DEL WANHELSING N/D DACHSHUND MINIATURE WIRE

OWNED BY SILVESTRO DEBORA JUDGED BY BAUCHAL GIANFRANCO (IT)


GROUP W I N N E R S GROUP 5 CH. TOKIE TOO GOOD TO BE TRUE

ZWERGSPITZ (POMERANIAN) ALL COLOURS

OWNED BY TANGKARAVAKUN CHAIVAT JUDGED BY INZOLI MASSIMO LEONARDO (IT)

GROUP 6 ROSSO IL RUBACUORI BASSET HOUND

OWNED BY DEOTTI SUSANNA JUDGED BY GABRIELLI MONDO MARIA TERESA (IT)

GROUP 7 POLCEVERA’S PONENTE

BRACCO ITALIANO, WHITE-ORANGE

OWNED BY TURCI MAURIZIO JUDGED BY BOTTERO AMEDEO (IT)

GROUP 8 NORA ICEFLOWER OF FINNWOODS LABRADOR RETRIEVER

OWNED BY BARBERI FRANCO JUDGED BY DAN ERICSSON (SE)


GROUP W I N N E R S GROUP 9 NICE STEPS FOR ME ONLY MEDIUM SIZE POODLE, BLACK

OWNED BY NAD JULIA JUDGED BY NATALETTI VALERIO (IT)

GROUP 10 SOBERS XTRAVAGANZA GREYHOUND

OWNED BY ALLEVAMENTO SOBERS JUDGED BY NODALLI BRUNO (IT)

BEST IN SHOW W I N N E R THOR DEL WANHELSING N/D DACHSHUND, MINIATURE WIRE-HAIRED

OWNED BY SILVESTRO DEBORA JUDGED BY MOLINARI CARLA (PORTUGAL)


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GROUP W I N N E R S GROUP 1 WALLFUGH INK TO NIRENO PICTURE WELSH CORGI PEMBROKE

OWNED BY VALSECCHI VITTORIA JUDGED BY ELIZABETH CARTLEDGE (GB)

GROUP 2 PEPE LE PEW V. TANI KAZARI AFFENPINSCHER

OWNED BY COOIJMANS MIEKE & LUCIENNE MIODONSKI JUDGED BY MIGUEL-ANGEL MARTINEZ (AR)

GROUP 3 DOYLE VON DER EMSMÃœHLE IRISH TERRIER

OWNED BY GRUETTNER HANS ERHARD JUDGED BY JHON J. WALSH (IE)

GROUP 4 LUX DEL PALATINO OCEAN DEEP DACHSHUND STANDARD MINIATURE WIRE

OWNED BY SALETTI ANNALUCE JUDGED BY TAMAS JAKKEL (HU)


GROUP W I N N E R S GROUP 5 CH. TOKIE TOO GOOD TO BE TRUE

ZWERGSPITZ (POMERANIAN) ALL COLOURS

OWNED BY TANGKARAVAKUN CHAIVAT JUDGED BY BURATTI PIERLUIGI (IT)

GROUP 6 APACHE ARIEGEOIS

OWNED BY RAIMONDI DAVIDE JUDGED BY MENTASTI GIANERCOLE (IT)

GROUP 7 POLCEVERA’S PONENTE

BRACCO ITALIANO, WHITE-ORANGE O WNED BY TURCI MAURIZIO

JUDGED BY JOSE HOMEM DE MELLO (PT)

GROUP 8 FRANCINI’S DAY BY DAY

ENGLISH COCKER SPANIEL OTHERS COLOR

OWNED BY MARCELLINO CRISTIAN JUDGED BY CECCARELLI MARIA (IT)


GROUP W I N N E R S GROUP 9 SAMARCANDA ITALIAN LOVER-N STANDARD POODLE, BLACK

OWNED BY MERATI SONIA JUDGED BY CONDO’ PIETRO PAOLO (IT)

GROUP 10 SOBERS XTRAVAGANZA GREYHOUND

OWNED BY ALLEVAMENTO SOBERS JUDGED BY COCHETTI FRANCESCO (IT)

BEST IN SHOW W I N N E R CH. TOKIE TOO GOOD TO BE TRUE

ZWERGSPITZ (POMERANIAN) ALL COLOURS

OWNED BY TANGKARAVAKUN CHAIVAT JUDGED BY DONDINA PAOLO (ITALY)


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Vilte Sokaityte Junior Handler Interviewed by Mihaela Kosic & Jovana Danilovic

BIS: First of all, thank you so much for this interview. As a longtime member of our Best in Show Team, it is nice to finally have you on the other side, in the role of an interviewee. V.S.: Thank you, Jovana, for this opportunity. I must admit it feels strange to be the one to respond the questions, but let’s see how I will deal with this task! BIS: How did you become interested in showing purebred dogs? How old were you when you got into this sport? V.S.: Actually, I have loved animals since little childhood. Although my first pets where some fishes, hamsters and a cat, I could never miss a dog walking down the street without watching him or asking the owner what its name was. The love and passion for dogs must have been already written in my genome & DNA. My first dog was a Boxer mix and I didn’t have any clue what dog shows are about, but she was the best friend I could ever wish for. After she passed away we went to live in Paris and we

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decided to buy a smaller dog – easier to travel with as our lifestyle required a great deal of flying. We fell in love with miniature schnauzers and it came to the point that one should join our family. As I said, I didn’t know anything about pure breed dogs so just by lucky accident (or destiny?) we bought a pedigree dog. Our breeder then for the first time told us that there are such a thing as dog shows, but we happily lived without them for 3 years until we came back to live in Lithuania in 2010. My father brought me to a few dogs shows in our city as a visitor. I enjoyed spending time there so much that I started to google more about it and I found out that there is a competition for children. In early spring of 2011 I went to my first handling class and since then it has become my addiction, malady. I took part in my first dog show when I was 12 years old – July 2011 and that is when the new chapter of my life began which continues till today (and hopefully will never end).


Photo 1 • JWW’16 Balt-LT-lv-Est-Ch RUS-BALT-LT-LV-EST JCH BALT W’17 LT W’17 Enci W’17 Club Jw Club W Ti La Shu California Dream a.k.a Panda Junior


“Crufts 2017 - definitely a show that I will never ever forget. Everything was magic about it – from the gala dinner, friendly junior handlers, helpful organizers, to the competition in overall!” BIS: Do you  have a mentor/s? Or someone in particular that you admire?   V.S.: Yes, of course, a good mentor is really important especially in the very beginning as it is someone who helps to form your view, approach and makes a huge impact on what handler you are going to become. My first two mentors who had the biggest influence on what I am today are, firstly, Diana Jurkuvėnienė– a dog breeder and great handler herself who now dedicates more time to her family and training others and, second, an ex-junior handler and dog groomer Marina Temnolonskaja who has recently started her own family too. I am more than grateful for those two wonderful ladies who showed me the beauty of the show world, trained me, gave me their dogs, entrusted me with my first clients, brought me to dog shows together and most important of all – have always believed in me! I am a very lucky person because since the very beginning both of them not only shared their knowledge of how a show leash should be carried, but also have never allowed me to “hold my nose too high’’ since dog-shows are first of all about love, passion, strong bonds, tolerance & understanding for each other. Now I keep improving my skills in various seminars & show classes – with Gerard Oshea, Natalia Trots, Svetlana Valoueva and other well-known trainers who work with dogsthrough positive training and make the dog enjoy the show as much as the handler. Definitely watching professional handlers working in the ring helps to improve your skills too. There

Photo 2 • Ch. Rylio Dusty Summer Road aka Blikas Photo 3 • Supeta’s In Yer Dreams with Kyricia (Elsa) owned by Kym Nicoll-Jones Photo 4 • SExito Bueno Upė aka Hugo

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Photo 5 • Supeta’s In Yer Dreams with Kyricia (Elsa) owned by Kym Nicoll-Jones

are many pro-handlers whose work I admire and take my time to stop by the ring to watch the beautiful work of a true team, duo. I think there is no point in naming them – I may forget someone! And in the end I must be grateful to my parents for everything they have taught me as well as for the enormous support and believe – always and everywhere! BIS: Do you remember your first JH competitions? V.S.: Of course! I think it is impossible to forget your first time in the ring or junior handling competition. Those moments stay in your mind forever – sometimes it is even easier to remember your first show than the one you took part in one or two months ago. July 23rd 2011 – the date of my first competition ever. Together with my mum, aunt and cousins we went to a local show 70km away. I took part with my miniature schnauzer (the one we accidentally bought with a pedigree). There were around 20 juniors in our group and I can remember very well that the judge asked me to do an L together with another handler ☺ I was not placed that day, but 90

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it wasn’t a huge disappointment, on the contrary, it motivated me to work more! I entered to my 2nd dog show as soon as I got home! BIS: You did a great job at the Crufts. It was a pleasure watching you in the main ring. How did you feel about Crufts this year? V.S.: Thank you! Crufts 2017 - definitely a show that I will never ever forget. Everything was magic about it – from the gala dinner, friendly junior handlers, helpful organizers, to the competition in general! I have heard a lot about the competition, its system, but you have to feel it at least for once in your life to know what it is really about. What I loved the most is that all the representatives were so easy to communicate with - I didn’t feel that we were “competitors” at all. And I am one lucky handler as I got the best dog I could ever wish for. The breed choice was a tough decision for me. Until the last minute I was not sure about it and I decided to take a Doberman only two or three days before the entry deadline.


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I was so unsure of my decision that I only told it to my closest friends, so nobody knew who I would step onto the green carpet with THAT day. Until Crufts I had been working and training with different Dobermans with the help of Svetlana Valoueva, a professional trainer and handler herself. When I got Elsa, the Doberman, in the beginning she was so shy, lacking in confidence, she didn’t put her tail up and I started to panic a little, but then I said to myself “Hey, stop! First of all you have to calm down and, second, enjoy the competition together with Elsa!”. I put her everyday leash on and took her for a walk, we played and simply spent some time together. She got used to me pretty fast and was one happy girl when we stepped in the famous ring! I would lie if I say that I remember every single moment from the competition. ☺ One thing I remember very well: first of all, I heard the name of Latvia, standing just before me, being pronounced. I was really happy for my very good friend Marta Kanepe that she made to the cut, but I could not imagine that the judge will pick two handlers in a row. And then I heard “Lithuania”! For a moment I didn’t know what to do as the emotions were huge. Being among the best Top-10 junior handlers of the world means a lot to me. It has been my biggest dream to take part in the finals and I did it just before becoming officially an adult – I am turning 18 in July. And in overall it was an amazing journey no matter some troubles getting there: our flight was canceled and I thought I am not going to be on time at show, I had almost no sleep, but the good company, the emotions, the atmosphere, and simply CRUFTS SHOW was my caffeine during these days! BIS: You had some very impressive results. What do you consider your greatest JH win and why? V.S.: Well, I have just told you about my journey and impressions of Crufts 2017. No doubt being selected for the shortlist in the international junior handling competition is definitely one of the most important wins for me. Not only because it was Crufts, but also due to the fact that I got a challenging dog and I really felt that the reason why she had her confidence and eyes on me when we entered the arena was because of the efforts and work I put in the morning before the competition. Another big win 92

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Photo 6 • Sidas Mazas Brolis aka Zhako

for me was at the European dog show 2015 in Oslo when on the very first day of the competition Mr. Claudio De Giulliani from Italy chose me together with a Bichon Frise from Finland as one of the TOP 3 junior handlers to go to the final. To celebrate brought my best friend to the most expensive restaurant we could find in the city center next to the Royal palace and in the end I managed only to order a dessert for us ☺ (but it was worth it!). Also, being evaluated and noticed by well-known, honorable judges among a huge amount of handlers means a lot. Back to the summer of 2015, we had an international dog show in Druskininkai, Lithuania. That day the competition was judged by Mr. Gerard Oshea from Sweden. I have always admired his work with dogs and was really looking forward to taking part under him. I took an Aussie from Russia and we ended up winning runner-up best in show from approximately 40-50 talented junior handlers. Also, I will never forget Monaco international dog show in 2016. Together with a Papillion from Belgium Mrs. Zena Thorn Andrews had given us first place


so “right” and I really know what I am doing. For the past few years I have constantly working and showing Weimaraners, German Shorthaired Pointers, Setters, Bourbon Braques or Hungarian Vizslas and I wish to keep it this way; improve myself as a handler of group 7, maybe even visit some breeders, handlers who specialize with hunting breeds and become a master myself!

Photo 7 • Ti La Shu California Dream a.k.a Panda Junior

which meant that I became Monaco champion and had the right to represent Monaco at Crufts 2017! But later the same year I was also announced as best junior handler of the year in Lithuania (after being vice-winner for two last years in a row) and of course I had to represent my own country in the international final. Anyway winning for sure is important, but nothing will ever bring that much joy as the glowing eyes & happy wagging tail of a dog on the other side of the leash ☺ BIS: Do you have a favorite breed you love showing and why? V.S.: I must be honest – this is one of the very last questions I left for answering – not the easiest one. First of all, a lot depends on the dog; each of them means a great deal to me. I get attached to them pretty fast, so sometimes it is not the breed, but just about the special heart inside the furry or hairless body ☺ Anyway, I would say that the group I feel the best with is the 7th. With a hunting breed on the other side of the leash everything seems to be

BIS: Are there some breeds more popular than others in Junior Handling? V.S.: Yes, I think it is possible to notice that some breeds are used more frequently in junior handling than others. I guess a lot depends on the country. In my opinion, for example in England they use Terriers way more often than in European dog shows. Of course handling competitions are different there – no special figures or golden rules, so even a crazy and alert Terrier is a convenient choice for a handler. I have noticed that in countries like Italy, Spain, Portugal or France handlers like to go for popular, showy breeds like Poodles, Australian Shepherds, American Cockers, Setters or German Shorthaired Pointers. Certainly it is not a rule, but it is something I have noticed. In Scandinavian countries (Finland, Sweden, Norway) handlers are not scared to experiment and take rare, uncommon breeds whose entries’ numbers are pretty low. If we look at the Crufts ring we would notice that group 7th is really popular! Handlers like to choose a Pointer, Kurtshaar or a Setter, sometimes even a Weimaraner or a Hungarian Vizsla. This year at Crufts gundogs were showed the same day as junior handling competition, but it did not stop handlers choosing a breed from this group. Australian Shepherds have always been one of the primary choices too. Also what I did notice that there are “some dogs more popular than others” - at least in my country and around. Handlers follow the dogs that their competitors are using in junior handling competitions and if the dog is owned by some breeder or a simple owner, they do not feel ashamed to ask the same dog and take it to the competition. I do not see this as a huge problem; simply, I think that a handler who prepares a dog on his own, who builds a strong bond between himself and his pet has the opportunity to reveal the true passion and talent; not the Best in Show Magazine

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one who takes a dog perfectly trained by someone else. Surely we all travel to some shows where we cannot bring our own dog or there are other situations, exceptions. Overall, dog handling is like fashion - trends change: some breeds are more popular one day and then the next day they are replaced by others. BIS: What part of the whole dog game do you love the most, and is there anything that you don`t like so much?   V.S.: Everything and everyone has pros and cons – dog shows are not an exception either. What do I love the most? I could write a novel about it! First of all, of course the reason why I am doing this – the true passion for dogs. No one could ever be a GOOD handler if he or she does not feel love for animals in general. So a day when I smell of dogs, fur, dogs’ food or cosmetics – is a day well spent ☺ Also dog shows bring all the wonderful people to one place - so many strong bonds and friendships are built: the unforgettable trips, journeys, adventures, laughs and tears of joy, early mornings, late nights, amity; all of this is a must and shows would not be the same without it. A great TEAM makes the dog game real and worth all the negativities! Yes, unfortunately white and black come together. I have never liked (and will never like) the hate and rivalry between breeders of the same breed or (/ junior) handlers. I will never understand what the point of slander is and why people talk bad about each other. Isn’t breeding something that people should share positively? Their experiences, thoughts, observations and finally their mistakes? If breeding is about moving forward and keeping the breed healthy, why should we fly towards this goal alone and not with a strong and powerful crew? Another thing I will never understand and what I do not like about shows is that some people exaggerate and forget what it is all about. Of course I am talking about those who poison dogs or make dogs suffer in another way. As I have said before – the one thing that should stick us together is that we all love and feel passion for dogs, but making dogs undergo cruelties is something indefensible. Dogs have confidence, trust in us, their dedication is immense and cruelty, or poisoning reveals the true face of 94

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a creature who is not worth to be called a human. BIS: Lately there are many handlers searching for assistants. What do you think Handlers are expecting from assistants and what are assistants are looking from Handlers? (Work, pay, relationship…) V.S.: Yes, I have really noticed that recently! It is becoming a new trend, but I think it is a wonderful opportunity for young handlers to learn from their role-models, to learn how to groom, handle different breeds and to get lots of experience. Professional handlers, I guess, are mostly looking for young handlers who have the availability to work for a longer period starting from 3 or 6 months, but then love, passion and willingness to learn is a must also. For a young handler it is also a chance to become more well known between breeders and judges, because if a professional handler can trust in you and trust you with the dogs then it is really something a person should value. Pay, at least in my opinion, it is only a secondary, negligible thing, because someone who wishes to earn money would choose an easier job where the income is even bigger. Professional handlers expect trust, dedication and determination from their student. A relationship without mutual understanding, agreement and respect is worth nothing. BIS: What about the future? Do you plan on pursuing a career as a full-time professional handler? V.S.: I wish that I knew the answer to this question! I am a person who is interested in various fields from biology to philology, dogs, different sports and even cooking. In September I will start my last year in school, will have my final exams and will have to decide what to do afterwards. Although handling is my biggest passion and lifestyle, but I still wish to get a degree and finish University. As I have mentioned before, I am really interested in sports as well as healthy lifestyle and nutrition. So after school I am considering physiotherapy in some good sportmedicine university abroad. I would like to work with athletes, take care of them, prepare for important races, maybe do some research in human muscles, running techniques and the impact of nutrition. But dogs are something that I cannot imagine my daily life without. I will always be a dog handler, maybe


Photo 8 • Ti La Shu California Dream a.k.a Panda Junior Photo 9 • Multi Ch BIS Keep Amused De Costalina aka Aqua

not full-time and not with 20 dogs at home, but I still hope to welcome dogs from different breeders or owners, to prepare them and take them to shows. In the future I would also like to become a dog breeder, but only when I have enough knowledge to breed healthy and strong puppies and be sure that I will make the breed move forward, but not backward. As you see I have many plans, but the most important is to dream big. “We are all in the gutter, but some of us are looking at the stars”, right?

BIS: Besides a Junior Handling career, you are also very active in; I would say very healthy, dog competition – canicross. How did you get involved with in it? V.S.: Yes, I have been involved in sled-dogs sports from the spring of 2016. Actually I have always followed Lithuanians’ results in the competitions all over Europe and dreamt about trying myself one day. Probably the main reason why I finally had enough courage to enter myself for a race was because I got more and more involved in the breed I wish to own & breed in the future – the German Shorthaired Pointer. Although in my first race I took part with a Saluki owned by friends who encouraged me to enter there, but after the competition I decided that I need to prepare a dog for myself. A great breeder and friend suggested I use a dog of her breeding; a young and still silly boy called Hugo. I started to train with him and took part in our first competition after a month in the Baltic cup event. From that day I have almost always taken part with Hugo: together we have already travelled not only to Lithuanian events, but also to Poland, and Estonia. Our results got better and better - now in most cases we manage to finish in the first three placements. Sled-dog sports, in my opinion, is something unique and brings huge joy; not only for the musher, but for the dog too. You should see how excited and loud the dogs are before starting or when they see the harnesses! Unfortunately, during summer it is too hot for competitions, but we did not stop training with Hugo and cannot wait for the next season starting this autumn. Stay tuned! BIS: Do you have any advice for those wishing to get into Junior Handling? V.S.: Well, my advice for those who wish to get involved into junior handling, but does not have enough courage – JUST DO IT! Trying, learning, doing mistakes, succeeding – all comes together, but first of all you need to start doing, working hard. And once you get involved, start to travel, show dogs and take part – never forget the real reason why you are doing this, never forget the passion and love. It should give goose bumps after all, right?

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The Literary Dog Annie and Liz on...Dogs Written by Anne Tureen

There are a number of reason why people have a short attention span when reading, because they are tired, because the text is in a foreign language, or there are thoughts of other more pressing matters. Annie on…Dogs! (Dogwise, 2002) is just the sort of book to pick up when you don’t feel like reading a book. Each ‘chapter’ is in fact one of her monthly articles written for ‘Dogs in Review’ (editor, Bo Bengtson) which she began preparing in 1997. The feeling of Mrs. Clark’s writing is conversational, the reader enters into her thoughts and reflections, and how precious is that when the author is one of the most prominent figures in the dog world! She muses on a wide variety of subjects, Westminster, Poodles, Cockers, travelling, type, ring procedure, she tells funny stories, many of which concern her own blunders, and each article feels like a souflè it is so light and tasty. When we find ourselves reflecting on some aspect of her discourse, we discover the truth and substance of her observations. There is much substance to Anne Rogers Clark. Her

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mother was a breeder of Cocker Spaniels, (she won Best Brace at Westminster in 1943) and so dogs were Anne’s life from the very beginning, and she continued the Surrey Kennel name founded by her mother throughout her adult life. By 21 she was a professional handler, one of the very few women at that time. She was the fiercest competitor, and closest friend of her female contemporary, the great Jane Kamp Forsyth. In the late 1960’s Mrs. Clark became a judge, and this brought her even deeper into her passion for dogs. Invited to judge all over the world, Mrs. Clark was among the most authoritive representatives from the USA. She identified herself as a New Yorker all of her life though she lived later in Delaware. She considered Westminster her own ‘local’ show, she won BIS as a handler (three times), as a breeder, and she judged BIS in 1978, moreover she was the commentator for the Television broadcast of ‘The Garden’ for 20 years.

The respectful authority she commanded in the dog world, however, is the last note one hears in her writing which is informal, and personal. By the end of this book, one feels she counts among your most pleasant acquaintance, you might pick up the phone and invite her over for an evening until it occurs to you that you have never really met her! She occasionally gives good advice on cooking such as her duck recipe in the article on field trials. She recounts her courtship and marriage as it was intertwined with Whippets. We also meet several of her friends, most notably the late Bob and Jane Forsythe, Mrs. Liz Cartledge, Frank Sabella, James Reynolds, Tom Bradley and many other more or less famous men and women in the dog world up until her final article in 2002. Mrs. Clark transpires in each passage her awareness that ours is a sport made up of people as well as dogs. Our aspirations, hard work, and above all our love of these marvelous animals is what makes our sport, and this is reflected in her dedication of the book: I am pleased to dedicate the book, Annie On… Dogs!, to the sport of pure bred dogs worldwide. I do this in the hope that the sport will endure for many generations of canines and their human guardians. To quote the late Jim Clark, “Everything good in our lives has come from the sport of dogs, including our lives together.” Liz on Annie… Mrs. Elizabeth Cartledge She was a lovely person, I was frightened of her at first, my husband and I organized trips to Westminster for many years, and you know she was so tall and had a big voice and such an imposing presence that I was completely in awe and a bit frightened, but then later on we became very good friends. She stayed with me when she came to do groups and BIS at the Windsor show, and we went to Wimbledon to see the Tennis and as luck would have it Pete Sampras was playing which happened to be her favorite player at the time. We made several day trips together, one with Ferelith Somerfield who was the editor of ‘Dog World’. We judged at a

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small open show in the North of England which Mrs. Sommerfield and I thought was great but Annie did not enjoy. To start with there were only four Poodles, nobody here knew who she was, the weather was bad, then she was stung by a wasp on the nape of her neck! She went to the secretary and asked if they could medicate her, but the man just said ‘Well nobody else has got stung…’ and she said ‘Is there nothing you can do?’, and he said ‘Go over to the fish and chips stand and pour some vinegar over it.’ On top of all that, the bed and breakfast they had booked had small beds and Annie’s feet came out at the bottom, so it wasn’t very comfortable, but we had a laugh about it. She was the epitomy of a ‘good sport’. Jim Clark was a charming man but I only met him a couple of times before he died. I stayed with Anniein the USA and she had designed her own house and kennel as a sort of condominium with quite a few dogs. In England I had a rare breed called a Lancashire Heeler and she was the sort of dog who had to make friends with you rather than the other way around. Annie completely ignored her from the first moment, so soon enough the dog jumped into her lap and they were best friends. When Hilda had a litter Annie asked for a pup and of course I gave her one but the Heeler joined in with a couple of 102

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Norfolks and set about a a favorite old standard Poodle of Annie’s, so the Heeler went to live with Betsy, a career and friend. The dog loved Betsy and her mother but hated Betsy’s Father and used to wait behind the curtains for him to walk by so she could nip at him! We were fast friends until the end. Annie as you know became very ill indeed, so when a close friend and colleague of mine called one day to say she had died, I thought I had better get a call to her friends who were surely still there at Annie’s place. But when I called and said I’d heard the sad news about Annie, they said ‘yes, we’ll give her the phone, thanks for calling.’ I had a wonderful long chat with Annie, then I learned that three days after our conversation she really did die, and I was grateful we’d had the opportunity to talk once more. Her friends had been with her and she was joking and drinking whiskey and her spirit was amazing despite the pain and discomfort that necessarily attended her illness. She was a very strong, unique person. She had achieved so much, she was an extremely successful handler in many breeds, and bred well, and was such a great judge. I remember a Corgi national special I was invited to judge in the USA many years ago. I was doing bitches, and the club had the show filmed. At the end of the day the cameraman came up to me and said, ‘You know your style of judging reminds me of our American judge, Anne Rogers Clark, but you probably don’t know who I mean.’ I was surprised since I hadn’t ever made a study of Annie when she was judging, but I said: ‘Oh! I do know her, and you couldn’t ave paid me a greater compliment!’


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GROUP W I N N E R S GROUP 1 KASSIEGER FIRENZ GERMAN SHEPHERD DOG

OWNED BY GRIXTI CHARLES JUDGED BY LUIS MANUEL CALADO CATALAN

GROUP 2 RICK VOM HAUSE NIVEKSUE ROTTWEILER

OWNED BY MALLIA PIERRE JUDGED BY LUIS MANUEL CALADO CATALAN

GROUP 3 SAREDON ENIGMA LAKELAND TERRIER

OWNED BY SCHEMBRI JOHANN JUDGED BY STELIOS MAKARITIS

GROUP 4 ANYANKAS AMERICAN LATINLOVER DACHSHUND S/H

OWNED BY MERCIECA STEPHEN JUDGED BY JANUS OPARA


GROUP W I N N E R S GROUP 5 NASLEDIYE ETERA TRUE DEVOTION BASENJI

OWNED BY BLUNDELL JOSEF JUDGED BY CARMEN NAVARRO

GROUP 6 BALDONI LUCE PORCELAINE

OWNED BY LASALANDRA FILIPPO JUDGED BY STELIOS MAKARITIS

GROUP 7 MISTY MEADOW’S BE MY GIRL ENGLISH POINTER

OWNED BY FRANCESCO COCHETTI JUDGED BY CARMEN NAVARRO

GROUP 8 TOO GOOD TO BE TRUTH SON OF MY HEART GOLDEN RETRIEVER

OWNED BY XUEREB NOEL JUDGED BY CARMEN NAVARRO


GROUP W I N N E R S GROUP 9 VIANAC PASHA FRENCH BULLDOG

OWNED BY KIKIEWICZ KATARZYNA (PL) JUDGED BY JANOS OPARA

GROUP 10 CHEBEC FLAWLWSS DIAMOND WHIPPET

OWNED BY MERCIECA STEPHEN JUDGED BY STELIOS MAKARITIS

BEST IN SHOW W I N N E R SAREDON ENIGMA LAKELAND TERRIER

OWNED BY SCHEMBRI JOHANN JUDGED BY STELIOS MAKARITIS


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GROUP W I N N E R S GROUP 1 CH KASSIEGER FIRENZ GERMAN SHEPHERD DOG

OWNED BY GRIXTI CHARLES JUDGED BY CARMEN NAVARRO

GROUP 2 CH RICK VOM HAUSE NIVEKSUE ROTTWEILER

OWNED BY MALLIA PIERRE JUDGED BY CARMEN NAVARRO

GROUP 3 JUNIOR DON KING OF RINGS AMERICAN STAFFORDSHIRE TERRIER

OWNED BY FITENI PHILIP JUDGED BY JANOS OPARA

GROUP 4 ANYANKAS AMERICAN LATINLOVER DACHSHUND STANDARD SHORT HAIRED

OWNED BY MERCIECA STEPHEN JUDGED BY STELIOS MAKARITIS


GROUP W I N N E R S GROUP 5 BANELORD FIRE CRACKER SIBERIAN HUSKY

OWNED BY CASSAR D/AMBROGIO E JUDGED BY LUIS MANUEL CALADO CATALAN

GROUP 6 EZOLILE DELLA GRIFUNERA RHODESIAN RIDGEBACK

OWNED BY FRANCESCHETTI VITTORIA CLARA JUDGED BY JANOS OPARA

GROUP 7 HIPOINT CARPE DIEM ENGLISH POINTER

OWNED BY CUSCHIERI VALENTINE JUDGED BY LUIS MANUEL CALADO CATALAN

GROUP 8 STAND BY ME

LABRADOR RETRIEVER

OWNED BY MOTTA GIOVANNA JUDGED BY LUIS MANUEL CALADO CATALAN


GROUP W I N N E R S GROUP 9 VIANAC PASHA FRENCH BULLDOG

OWNED BY PELLEGRINI PATRICK JUDGED BY STELIOS MAKARITIS

GROUP 10 CHRISOLI BABY JANE WHIPPET

OWNED BY CACHIA CHRISTIAN JUDGED BY JANOS OPARA

BEST IN SHOW W I N N E R VIANAC PASHA

FRENCH BULLDOG OWNED BY PELLEGRINI PATRICK JUDGED BY DUSAN PAUNOVIC (SRB)


How every breeder should evaluate vitality – vitality indicators by Juha Kares Too many breeders get trapped by details and the big picture is easily forgotten. Every breeder should evaluate the overall vitality of their dogs generation by generation. This is best way to ensure soundness and health in your kennel. If breeders would pay more attention to overall vitality indicators, the future of pedigree dogs would most likely be much more positive. What are be the most important vitality indicators that all breeders should keep in mind in all occasions? Always keep the big picture in mind when breeding pedigree dogs. Try to keep and use for breeding the very strongest individuals, those with true vitality. That is the number one task for a good breeder.

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1. Reproduction is easy and natural. Female seasons are strong and males mate by themselves without hesitation (if the day is correct). Whelping should be piece of cake. C-sections are big no-no!

6. Your puppies and dogs should have a quite powerful and efficient digestive system. If your puppies and dogs get good food that they assimilate well, they will thrive.

2. Breeders should pay attention to the average size of the litters. It is never a matter of luck what the size of your litter is. Size indicates your knowledge of the fertility of the dogs you have chosen for reproduction. Always choose your stud dogs and brood bitches from numerous and easily whelped litters.

7. Delicate stomachs that keeps returning in new generations is a big no-no.

3. Take note of how vital and strong your new born puppies are. Start to choose your future generation of animals from the moment of birth. Take the strongest, those with the most will power. They move fast and easy. They are born stronger and they suck the strongest. They naturally take the best spots and best back teats in the survival game. They do not need any help to get started.

8. If you produce puppies and dogs with allergies you are starting to loose the game. Allergies are the first strong warning indicators that something is getting seriously wrong. Remove them from your breeding program as soon as possible. 9. Mental soundness is there. The dogs used in breeding should always be more or less the strongest ones in the population. Nature does not choose weak animals for reproduction; both in mind and body, the most powerful individuals are selected.

10. Your dogs and their parents should live a long and easy life. Medication and 4. Evaluate and note at which age treatments should be negligible. Vital dogs your small puppies start to stand and walk. live medication free lives easily at least 10 Vital puppies will stand and walk sooner – 14 years. Do not use dogs for breeding than those with less vitality, they will have whose parents or grandparents died at a better balance as well. young age. There is always a reason and people are too good at lying. 5. Puppies and dogs should have very healthy and strong appetites. Dogs should love to eat. That is the secret of increasing dog populations over the centuries. If the puppy or dog does not want to eat, something is seriously wrong.

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Best in Show Magazine


Best in Show Magazine


Best in Show Magazine


Best in Show Magazine


Best in Show Magazine


27-28TH OF MAY 2017 MADRID INTERNATIONAL DOG SHOW

FCI 1, JUDGED BY BENNY BLIDH VON SCHEDVIN (SWE) GEORGINA DI GAVIE Bearded Collie, Ow. . A. I. Rodriguez & O. Largo

VELT MAYSTER FOM HAUS STIER Welsh Corgi Pembroke, Ow. Anna V. Ivanova

TANTO AMORE E COSI’GRANDE DESIDERIO DID GERIDINGO

Australian Cattle Dog, Ow. Gema Zuccato

FCI 2, JUDGED BY CHRISTIANE LAFAY (FR) SKJAERGAARDENS M. STAR REALE Leonberger, Ow. Paola Anna Maggi

GENERALE-F DELLA BAIA AZZURRA Great Dane, Ow. Patrizio Donati

CASA ALTO CRISTELO STORM GUERDIANO WINSDOR

Bullmastiff, Ow. .Ricardo Manuel Miranda

FCI 3, JUDGED BY ROGER CROOKS (UK) OKI-DOKI DE L’COSSTA Miniature Bull Terrier, Ow. Ezequiel Natan Roman

MAC RUA’S MILWOUKEE MAN Irish Terrier, Ow. Inger Sobeus

KARBALLIDO UNDISPUTED LINE American Staffordshire Terrier, Ow. J. Ignacio


27-28TH OF MAY 2017 MADRID INTERNATIONAL DOG SHOW

FCI 4, JUDGED BY MICHAEL HARMS (D) YIMBA DE LOS CUBONES Daschund Standard L. H., Ow. M. A. Becerril & M. Angeles Rodriguez

PEPA DA QUINTA D’ABROEIRA Daschund Kaninchen W. H. Ow. Pedro Luis de Sousa

GUARDIAN DE PORTO VILLAGE Daschund Miniatura L. H., Ow. Rebeca Prados

FCI 5, JUDGED BY ANTONIO CHOYA (ESP) NORTISK ARCHIBALD MOORE Samoyed, Ow. M. Paula Chavez

KING OF EGYPT DE LOS PERROS DE BIGO Chow Chow, Ow. Nuria Vigo Navajon

MENTA DE KABLUNA Alaskan Malamute, Ow. Fabrizio Cali

FCI 6, JUDGED BY JEAN-PIERRE MICHEL (FR) ALTAJARA MAHATMA GANDHI Beagle, Ow. Manuel Caballero

SOLETRADER CHIP N’PIN Petit Basset Griffon Vendeen, Ow. Sara Robertson

LASSI A LA MANGUE DA TERRA QUENTE Basset Artesien Normand, Ow. Pedro Antonio


27-28TH OF MAY 2017 MADRID INTERNATIONAL DOG SHOW

FCI 7, JUDGED BYTATJANA UREK (SLO) APPLEGROOVE BECHAMEL Irish Red Setter, Ow. Igor Trusov

BICE Braco Italiano, Ow. Manuel Francesconi

JUST GREY MIM’S VON SILBERWAYS JAGER Weimaraner, Ow. Ramon Forcada

FCI 8, JUDGED BY DINKY SANTOS (PI) CLAIRECREEK LUSITANO OCEANO ATLANTICO Portugese Waterdog, Ow. Paula y Hugo Sampainho

HARADWATER NIGHT IN HEAVEN English Cocker Spaniel, Ow. M. J. Costa & S. Cristina de Sousa

WAKA WAKA JUST DO IT American Cocker Spaniel, Ow. Estelle Christiane Sabine

FCI 9, JUDGED BY HEIDI KIRSCHBICHLER (A) DARTAN DE VALIANT ALADAR Short Haired Chihuahua, Ow. Jose Luis Santiago Pier

DON GAUCHO EL FANTASMA DE LA OPERA Black Standard Poodle, Ow. Francisco Luis Jimenez

MEIGAS FORA BOMBONWHITE Tibetan Terrier, Ow. Francisco Marquez


27-28TH OF MAY 2017 MADRID INTERNATIONAL DOG SHOW

FCI 10, JUDGED BY GERARD JIPPING (D) EYES GAZING YOU TALKIN’ TO ME Afgan Hound, Ow. S. Ortiz, K. Bello & R. Martín

ABSOLUTE MANN SEAWORLD Whippet, Ow. Francesca Pavesi

SOLOVYEV TALISMAN FOR GRAN VENCEDOR Borzoi, Ow. Andrey Klishas

DONDERSTEEN LOVE ME FOREVER Daschund Miniature Wire Haired, Ow. Merlijn Brenninkmeijer

VAYA TELA ENYA Kerry Blue Terrier, Ow. Maria Antonia Baños y Jose Luis Luque

ØLENSKJOLD’S MISTERY DARK American Akita, Ow. Montse Betancor

BEST IN SHOW, JUDGED BY BORIS CHAPIRO (FR) BICE Braco Italiano, Ow. Manuel Francesconi

KING OF EGYPT DE LOS PERROS DE BIGO Chow Chow, Ow. Nuria Vigo Navajon

HARDWATER NIGHT IN HEAVEN English Cocker Spaniel, Ow. M. J. Costa & S. Cristina de Sousa


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Bohem Whippets by Bo Bengtson Few judges have as long experience of Whippets as Bo Bengtson. He has owned Whippets since he was a teenager, and since the 1970s has judged the breed — at Crufts, Westminster and the FCI World Show, but mostly at specialty shows in England, USA, Canada, Australia, Sweden, Finland, Italy, Germany, Mexico, New Zealand and Russia, plus at many all-breed shows in other countries. On at least 30 occasions he has attracted breed entries of more than 100 Whippets. In 2017 he has already judged Whippets in Australia and Sweden and will also be judging Whippets for the first time in Slovakia and France later this year. BIS: When did you get your first Whippet? B.B.: In 1961 when I was 16 years old I imported Laguna Locomite as a puppy from England. This was in Sweden, where I was born. My sister and I already had an Afghan Hound who was not easy to take care of, so my parents refused to let me have another dog at home. Locomite lived with friends nearby, and I spent a lot of time with him, but when my parents saw how sensible Locomite was they let me get another Whippet puppy from England. That

was Laguna Leader, who lived at home with me his whole long life. Both Locomite and Leader became International Champions and Best-in-Show-winners, and Leader sired a lot of champions. (Locomite was hardly used at stud.) BIS: What made you decide to get a Whippet? B.B.: I always thought I would have many breeds, but I have had mostly Whippets for many years now… I wanted to have all the Sighthound breeds, of course, but also others that I love, like Pekingese and Bull Terriers. At first the Whippets were mostly a sensible choice, because they are such a convenient size, short-haired and don’t bark, but they really fit me well and now I can’t imagine living without them. As a teenager I was working in an Afghan Hound kennel in England and fell in love with their pet Whippet. Then at a show I saw Ch. Laguna Ligonier, who was a young dog then and not even a champion — he became a great stud dog later on. I had seen photos of Ch. Laguna Lucky Lad, who was exported to America and was the first Whippet to win the Group at Westminster, so it was pretty clear which kennel in England I would get my Whippets from.


BIS: Tell us something about your Whippet breeding. How did you develop a kennel? B.B.: I never had a kennel, just four or five Whippets at home. In 1966 I registered my kennel name, Bohem, and bred my first Whippet litter. Then I bred about one litter per year until the last one in 2011. I’m not going to breed any more, but I’m sure I will always have Whippets. There were a total of 43 Bohem litters in those 50 years. The first puppies were born in Sweden, but in 1980 I moved to California and all the later litters were bred in the U.S. Somefimsz in America I bred in partnership with others. It’s actually a very good idea to have more than one person who is responsible for finding good homes for the puppies, etc., and there’s no need to keep a lot of dogs at home when you co-breed: You can still be fairly active as a breeder. Maybe co-breeding isn’t for everyone, but it has worked really well for me. I was also traveling a lot, getting my degree at the university and writing articles and books — usually about dogs — so I haven’t been as active with my own dogs as I probably should have been. It always seemed like doing research into dog show history and judging were at least as important as breeding and showing … BIS: How many champions have you bred? B.B.: There have been a little more than 130 Bohem champions, but that includes a couple of early Afghan Hounds and some Greyhounds that I bred long ago — most of them in partnership with Göran Bodegård, who is an international all-rounder judge now. There were close to 80 champions from the Whippet litters I’ve bred, so nearly two per litter, and another 20 that I didn’t breed myself, including some that were imported from England. BIS: Were all those champions in Sweden or America? B.B.: No, they were all over Europe as well, a few also in Asia and South America. BIS: Which are the best Whippets you bred? B.B.: There were some very nice dogs in Sweden: Int. Ch. Bohem Lekain and Int. Ch. Bohem Filipin were 160

Best in Show Magazine

Photo 2 • 1962: Showing Whippet for the first time: Laguna Locomite later became an Int. Ch. and BIS winner. Photo 3 • 1971: BIS Int. Ch. Laguna Leader and SBIS Int. & Eng. Ch. Fleeting Flamboyant with a puppy.

probably the best sires, but Int. Ch. Bohem Mome Rath was the best Whippet I bred when I lived over there. I think he’s one of the few from those days who would still look good today.In the U.S. the best one was probably Am. Ch. Bohem C’est la Vie, who really had almost everything I want in a Whippet, including a tough, self-confident temperament. Somehow she was let out of her crate and disappeared at JFK Airport in New York after Westminster, and although we searched for many months she was


land, UK Ch. Palmik Strike It Right JW. He is really handsome, black brindle and white, and not “too English” in type for most American judges, but he has taken a great dislike to American shows and won’t make the most of himself in the ring … In his native England he was very relaxed and happy at the shows, so I don’t know what happened, but he’s a wonderful house dog, and of course that’s the most important. I also co-own Viggo with a friend in Palm Springs and a couple of other Whippets, so I still have some dogs to show, although we don’t go to many shows anymore — mostly to specialties. BIS: Is the Palmik dog a complete outcross from your “old” dogs? B.B.: He has some Bohem blood far back in his pedigree, and of course he goes back to the same English foundation as all my old dogs did, but basically he’s an outcross for most American bitches. He has sired some nice puppies in England and Europe — we’ll see if he can have any influence in America.

Photo 4 • 1977: Showing Int. Ch. Bohem Mome Rath. Photo 5 • 1980: Judging at the FCI World Show in Italy, Whippet Ch. Beseeka Knight Errant of Silkstone, later BIS.

never found … It was really traumatic. She had a litter of two puppies before she disappeared, both of them became champions and one of them sired GCh. Counterpoint Painted by Bohem SC, “Viggo,” who is eight years old now and siring some beautiful puppies. BIS: What Whippets do you own today? B.B.: At home I only have two spayed veteran bitches, both champions, and a young dog from Eng-

BIS: Do Whippets in America look very different from those in Great Britain and Europe? B.B.: In some respects they do, but not nearly as much as they used to, because there is a lot of American blood in Europe these days, even in England. The AKC and the British/FCI standards are different in a few areas — mainly in America we allow for a little more size, and the AKC standard also requires Whippets to have dark pigment and eyes, which isn’t specified in the British standard. Most of the differences are a matter of taste, however. Perhaps American Whippets in general are a little more elegant and glamorous than those in Europe, but that’s not always true. A lot of American judges don’t want to put up anything except red brindles with white necks and legs, so most of the top winners in the U.S. are that color. It’s pretty ridiculous, since the standard everywhere states clearly that all color and markings are allowed! BIS: What are the most common faults you see in Whippets today? B.B.: That depends on where you are. In America there are too many “generic show dogs” that have Best in Show Magazine

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beautiful heads and long necks but not enough body length, substance or angulation, all of which is important in a top class Whippet. And they are almost never any color other than brindle-and-white! In England the dogs generally have great bodies and toplines but nobody seems to take heads, ears or expression as seriously as we do in the U.S. The Whippets in Scandinavia are usually really good, but there’s a tendency for them to be almost too low and long. Good length of loin is important, but if it’s accompanied by short legs the Whippet can start looking like a Dachshund … In Europe and Australia the Whippets vary so much that you can’t generalize: usually they look like either their British or their American ancestors … BIS: What about the best characteristics? B.B.: Easily the best thing that’s happened is that Whippets no longer look like those miserable little creatures that we saw too much for many years … They had exaggerated toplines with too much arch, really ugly heads and bad ears, and the only good thing about them was that they were usually a very good size — less than 50 cm tall. Movement has improved tremendously also: Whippets usually had terrible movement in the past, and even people who ought to know better then put up dogs with high-stepping, hackney movement. Whippets should move smoothly and economically, without wasted motion and absolutely not with a high step!

Photo 6 • 1983: With the English import Ch. Hardknott Maestro of Bohem and his daughter, later SBIS Ch. Whippoorwill Bohem Aria. Photo 7 • 1988: Winning BOB at the American Whippet Club national specialty with Ch. Bohem Delacreme Demoiselle. Photo 8 • 1993/94: BIS Ch. Bohem Of Thee I Sing.

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BIS: In what parts of the world do you find the best Whippets these days? B.B.: That’s a really tough question … When I grew up in the 1960s and early ‘70s it was only England that mattered: The best Whippets in the U.S. were English imports, and really no other country produced consistently good Whippets at that time. The Scandinavian countries, especially Sweden, started getting beautiful Whippets in the 1970s — I would like to think that the stud dogs I imported from Laguna and Fleeting had something to do with that. There were some very clever Swedish breeders who used these dogs really well. When I got the Hamilton plaquet from the Swedish Kennel Club in the early ‘80s I think it was more for importing useful stud dogs than “for excellence in breeding,” as they


Photo 12 • 2013: With GCh. Counterpoint Painted by Bohem SC, “Viggo,” BOB American Whippet Club specialty. Photo Bergman. Photo 13 • 2015/1: American Whippet Club Top 20, GCh. Shamasan Bohem Breezing Up, “Homer, “shown by Phoebe Booth. (Bo to the right.) Photo Thomas.

Photo 9 • 2005: Ch. Bohem C’est la Vie, BIS at Santa Barbara, handled by Paul Lepiane. Photo 10 • 2006: Judging the American Whippet Club national specialty, BOB Ch. Brushwood’s Moxi of Endeavor. Photo 11 • 2008: Ch. Arwen Glitterati of Bohem JC lure coursing.

stated officially. Australia has bred some high-class Whippets, mixing British and American imports with great success. Italy and France have done well also. Really most of the European countries have good Whippet breeders these days. Last year, when I judged the Whippet Club championship show in England, the BIS winner from an entry of more than 300 Whippets was an import from Poland! That would have been just unthinkable a few decades earlier … In America, when you go to most all-breed shows there are only a dozen Whippets or so, and some of the winners are not particularly impressive, but if you go to the American Whippet Club national Best in Show Magazine

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Photo 12 • 2015: American Whippet Club Top 20, GCh. Bohem Swan Song, “Rosa,” shown by Scot Northern. (Bo to the right.) Both Homer and Rosa are sired by Viggo. Photo Thomas.

specialty there are usually 300-400 dogs entered, sometimes more, and the classes are full of really beautiful dogs … You wonder where all those Whippets are hiding at the all-breed shows, but of course the U.S. is a giant country, so everything is spread out. BIS: Who is the best Whippet you have ever judged? B.B.: That’s actually not so difficult to answer. I have judged a lot of beautiful Whippets over many years but the best one was the bitch who won BIS when I judged the AWC national specialty in 2006, Ch.

Brushwood’s Moxi of Endeavor. I still remember turning around, seeing her standing there and getting goose-bumps … She had all the long, beautiful curves that a top class Whippet should have, and she moved like a dream. Can I mention one dog that I didn’t judge also? On my way to judge the first national specialty in New Zealand sometime around 2000 or 2001 I made a stop-over in Australia and visited Frank and Lee Pieterse, who had Ch. Statuesque Extortion at home then. His dam was a bitch I had sent out in whelp, so I “almost” bred him, but I had never seen him before. Lee took Extortion in the car and moved him for me in a park in Sydney, and he was so handsome I could not believe it … He was probably the best Whippet male I’ve ever seen. BIS: Please mention some favourite wins that you have had with Whippets. B.B.: Going Best in Show at the international show in Stockholm in 1963 with Locomite was of course pretty amazing — I was only 18 years old at the time. (Later on I also won Reserve BIS at this show, and a bitch that Göran Bodegård and I bred was BIS there as well, but they were Greyhounds.) In the U.S., winning BIS at one of the first AWC national specialties in the 1980s with Ch. Bohem Delacreme Demoiselle was fun, of course (and BOS was her grandsire, Ch. Hardknott Maestro of Bohem, an English import). Also, it was exciting when Ch. Bo-

Photo 13 • 2016: Awarding CC and BIS at the Whippet Club championship show in England to Ch. Cobyo Tylko Paranoia (second from left). Dog judge was Wim Wiersma from the Netherlands; his CC winner and BOS (third from left) was Mulcair May Contain Nutz. Far left, Best Puppy Richclass King of Kings. Far right, Res. BIS and Best Veteran, Ch. Palmik Magical Whispers. Photo Pauline Oliver.

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Photo 12 • 2016: Showing SBIS GCh. Charlamar Sashays In White Linen at the American Whippet Club national specialty. Judge Dr. Barbara Henderson. Photo Ken O’Brien.

hem Three Ring Circus won all three shows during the AWC specialty weekend in California in 2002 — nobody had done that before. I didn’t show him myself but had a professional handler, Andy Linton, show him, which I seldom do. Later I showed a great-grandson, Ch. Counterpoint Painted by Bohem, to BIS the AWC specialty in California twice, in both 2010 and 2013 … BIS: What do you think is in store for Whippets in the future? B.B.: It’s impossible to guess. They are such a great breed that they deserve to be much more popular in the U.S. than they are, but that’s not going to happen if we keep focusing on a “show temperament” that makes the dogs look great in the ring but difficult to live with. Whippets should be calm, sensible and sweet — not hyper-active the whole time … It’s interesting that they are so much more popular in England than they are in America. If you

look at how they have changed conformation-wise since I started in the breed, Whippets today look really different — they are much more attractive, much sounder and move much better than they used to. The first Whippet champion ever was made up in England in the 1890s, a little more than 120 years ago, and I have been watching Whippets for nearly half that time — that’s a LONG time! Sometimes when I look at photos of dogs that I really liked from the 1950s and ‘60s they look so awful that I’m not sure how I could have thought they were beautiful … so I guess one’s taste changes as well as the dogs. I’ve always said that if those of us who are active now can’t bring the Whippet into the future at least as handsome, happy and healthy as it was when we started, then we have failed. Fortunately there are so many talented Whippet breeders around the world that I don’t think this will happen!

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Sportingfield Whippets by Debbie Butt Interviewed by Anne Tureen & Mihaela Kosic

BIS: When did you get involved in dogs and how did you first come across Whippets? Which thing about the breed was (and still is) so special for you? D.B.: I was born into it, and my daughters are third generation. Whippets were first bred by my parents, though they started out in Poodles. Mother was an assistant to Mrs. Anne Rogers Clark and she met my Father at a Poodle special, so dogs were in my family. Mrs. Clarke gave my parents their first Whippet as an anniversary present and my parents went on to create a unique and beautiful bloodline which I am honored to continue. I also have worked with Smooth Fox Terriers, Greyhounds, Scottish Deerhounds, and Berger Piccards though now I am very much involved in Border Collies, and Maine Coon cats. I have four Whippets in my home and I co-own a larger number of them with trusted people. BIS: How many years passed between your first Whippet and your first litter? D.B.: Our first litter was when I was about seven. Through the years our kennel collaborated with Meander, Moreshore and Apraxan.

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BIS: What goals did you set up for yourself as a beginner, and what goals are you pursuing now as a well-established breeder? D.B.: Health, Movement and type. It has taken years, we had a line, with style, and glamour, typified by Sportingfields Jazzfest and Rock On and even later by Bahama Sands. We raised the bar in movement with Broadstrider By George in the mid nineteen nineties. I worked to combine the two values of beauty and movement and I think Sporting Fields Shamless is pretty near my goal. She is the number one hound in the USA, Eukanuba Hound group winner, and now Royal Canine hound group first, second in group at Westminster, 50 BIS and so much more. Working towards these goals is extremely satisfying since everything we do is done by us, the planning, the care, and I was top female owner handler, and now my daughters are handling for the kennel.


Photo credits: Jeffrey Hanlin


BIS: How many litters approximately do you have a year? D.B.: We value quality and not quantity. We end up being top breeder of the year every time, but I have a number of co ownerships so that this is really a group reward. BIS: What are your long-term goals in breeding? D.B.: Continuing what I have worked to achieve until now. That is not easy since the breed has health issues, specifically a heart condition Mitrovalve disease, then a very small number of Whippets have been positive for Cardiomiopathy. You can raise a good dog and then at two years run the tests and if that comes back positive there are two years tossed away. BIS: What do you consider your greatest achievement as a breeder? D.B.: We have had so many things to be grateful for over the years. For example our Ch Sporting Fields Jazz Fest is the only dog of any breed ever to have become both number one in the country in conformation and number one in the nation in lure coursing, and he went over to Sweden to Nunna Runsten. By the way we also bred the only Whippet ever to become an obedience champion (OCH). However, I would say that my own greatest achievement is in enjoying the ride, to enjoy our friendships, and cultivate the younger generations. BIS: Are there any specific stud dogs/brood bitches in your variety, in your country, or globally, that you think have had an important impact on the breed? D.B.: The stud dogs called Misty Mor Shamandole, Della Crème’s Della Renta and his sire Saxon Shore Amber Waves are three stud dogs who brought glamor and elegance to the breed. Laguna Lucky Lad is another one. BIS. If you can use just three words to describe the breed, which three would you use? D.B.: Beauty, intelligence, athleticism.

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BIS: On which things breeders should focus in this breed? D.B.: Health-test every Whippet with an echocardiogram! And type -they should have an S shape they should not have flat backs like a Greyhound they should not have long skinny heads like a Borzoi. Don’t compromise on movement, you want a well-constructed typical Whippet. BIS: How would you describe the ideal Whippet, and what traits do you think make up the essence of the breed? D.B.: For me it has the head and long crested neck of the Arabian horse. I want a short dishy face with huge eyes, so big you can see them across the room. I want the movement of a great dressage horse with an extended trot. If you go to my facebook page I posted a whole section of our dogs in movement. When I posted Shamless some people said ‘Oh that’s not correct movement’ but I want big beautiful movement, a ground covering gait than can last all day long. This is not a head breed, but the head should be beautiful in my opinion. It ought to be square, wider between the eyes and ears, wideset and large eyes with a sweet expression. If you have that long cresty neck ending in a beautiful head with soulful eyes, there, that’s what I want. BIS: Do you think there are any traits in the breed you fear are becoming exaggerated? D.B.: I don’t know why any judge would put up a flat backed Whippet, BIS: Please mention 2 to 3 Whippets which are not owned, bred or shown by yourself, that you particularly admired, and tell us what you most admired about each. D.B.: Saxon Shores Flashdance, Norweka Pretty Woman, Pennyworth Light My Fire BIS: Which breeders do you cooperate most with, and why? D.B.: Raybar kennel and Moreshore kennels have been important partners in the past, but we are breeding on a smaller scale today. Today we work with some private families and small Best in Show Magazine

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people outside my breed. BIS: What is it like being part of the Whippet community? Is it welcoming to newcomers and supportive of successful breeders? D.B.: It is welcoming. But my desire to get into the Border Collies was pursued the more due to a certain uncomfortable feeling among colleagues in Whippets. People tend to become unpleasant if they are not achieving what they might. We work very hard on our breeding goals and we do it all ourselves. The day after a BIS win we are picking up after the dogs and it is like every other day. People get all wrapped up in their egos, and I remember when I was a youngster and all the dog people used to get together at dinner and into the evening talking about the dogs, and the subject was getting better dogs and making our sport the best it could be. I rarely see anything like that now.

kennels like David and Gena Samuelson of Dashing Whippets, people I really trust, who will never do something behind your back then go ‘Whoops’! If someone has a different opinion than mine concerning a breeding decision, then we can discuss the issue and come to an understanding. Another main priority is proper puppy homes. That is paramount. A Whippet is best as a house dog. Someone I would like to work with is Molly Brul Steel in Australia, I admire her dogs, also Joanne from Forget Me Not dogs in Canada. BIS: Which individuals of the sport have been your greatest inspiration and support? Did you have mentors, and how important was mentoring as a breeder? D.B.:The most important people outside my family were: Anne Rogers Clark, Michelle Billings, and Border Fame in Australia. I have learned a lot from 170

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BIS: Whippets are large in numbers and it is one of the breeds in the world that vary the most. Why do you think so many different variations of the breed type have come into existence and been accepted in the show ring? D.B.: I have always admired Terrier people, they have a very clear idea of their type, but no one in Whippets seems to share a common view of type. Many kennels have a family type which is easily recognizable, so people seem to dance to their own tune, there is no one song. BIS: How did the Whippet change over the time since you first got involved with the breed? D.B.: Whippets were originally for poaching, they were much smaller more like an Italian Greyhounds you could him pick up and run away. They had both smooth and rough coats. That developed into a racing dog for Coal miners. The history of the breed helps to keep us on track, the breed is getting big, and the back is getting flat. This is not a medium sized Greyhound, a Whippet needs to stay under 22.5 inches, I think 22 is a big Whippet. They need a good rise over the loin, but not a dip behind the withers in a flowing line that clearly forms an S. We’ve lost some eye shape as well. We need large expressive eyes.


BIS: Is there something which you would like to change/improve in the breed in general? D.B.: I would like them to look like Whippets, with the hallmark S curve, but also I would like to see more layback and return of upper arm. BIS: What has been the biggest disappointment in breeding and showing for you so far? D.B.: My disappointment is seeing breeders breed to the Greyhound type, I simply don’t understand that. BIS: Which breed standard do you deem as best to describe the breed: the FCI, KC or AKC breed standard? Is there anything you think should be amended in the standards? D.B.: I adhere to the AKC standard. However I must say the FCI promotes a smaller more moderate Whippet and I like that. BIS: What is the most important point of which you would like a judge of your breed to be aware? D.B.:A Whippet needs to have an S curve. BIS: What are the most important characteristics to keep in mind for anyone wanting to become a good Sighthound judge? D.B.: Do it for the breed, it is not about the people, do it for the dogs. BIS: What would be the most important single piece of advice you would give to all serious young breeders? D.B.: Go find what you like. Talking to a young breeder recently he listed a few dogs he admired but the types were so different I had to say, ‘make a choice’, find which sort of Whippet is beautiful to you.

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Rivarco Whippets by Mauro Perna Interviewed by Mihaela Kosic

BIS: When did you get involved in dogs and how did you first come across Whippets? Which thing about the breed was (and still is) so special for you? M.P.: I was raised in a non-dog family and for me owning a dog was simply an obsession. I first got interested and involved in Afghans, Lhasa and Poodles but when I met in 1990 Gaetano Turrini (Rivarco) that really started my involvement in the world of purebred dogs. I didn’t choose Whippets, Whippets chose me! It’s a silhouette breed with a huge variety of colours, they are medium size, short hair, clean even if you don’t want them to, minimal barking and are VERY healthy in general….just about perfect. BIS: How many years passed between your first Whippet and your first litter? M.P.: I got my first Whippet from Gaetano in 1991 and this bitch was bred a couple of years later. ALL of the litters I was involved with were born under the Rivarco prefix until recently. My involvement with the Rivarco kennel now dates 25+ years. Call me a kennel handler, an associate whatever...in Italy coownership and co-breeding is not ermitted, for no

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plausible reason, and so I chose to stay under this banner regardless. BIS: What goals did you set up for yourself as a beginner, and what goals are you pursuing now as a well-established breeder/exhibitor? M.P.: I come from the “old fashioned” school, no internet, no Facebook, no instant professional handling skills, just watching, learning, asking, reading books, watching as many pictures as you could and listening from those WHO KNEW about the breed, no self-proclaimed “breeders” after their first litter. Before I stepped into a ring I think I had been travelling around shows for at least 2-3 years, I was the one cleaning up after the dogs, unloading the car, bringing the dogs to the ring and eventually showing the ones that were “sacrificed” in favor of the rookies. One day I was allowed to show my first big winner, Rivarco Salomè, a multi title winner in the 90s. The Whippet is a breed with such a vast gene pool and variety in type that it is really impossible to claim which one is the perfect dog, so the goal is always to breed the next good one that will stand out from the crowd in the ring.


Photo credits: Anna S zabo


BIS: How many litters approximately you have a year? M.P.: I’m involved at the moment in no more than 2-3 litters per year. The huge number of litters born throughout Europe has made it more and more difficult to plan a larger number of quality litters. A good breeder sometimes will struggle to find pet buyers against the huge number of litters born by chance and raised in the kitchen (in the best cases) of the next newcomer in the breed who very often never walked into a dog show. BIS: What are your long-term goals in breeding? M.P.: Honestly speaking we have set almost any possible record achievable in the breed, BIS winners (I personally have shown 9 different specimens to an All Breed win), a record-breaking number of World and European titles, an uncountable number of champions and titles almost anywhere in Europe and UK including multiple wins at Crufts. Just an American or Australian champion is still missing to date. I had recently tried to count the number of champions I finished and showed and the number is probably around 100!! Still, breeding the next outstanding specimen remains the goal. When you have a vision about the next litter that is the goal and with such a variety in type and colors believe me your visions can be almost limitless. BIS: What do you consider your greatest achievement as a breeder? M.P.: It is probably the Rivarco “T” litter born in 2008 by Ch. Adagio Love Supreme and out of Ch.Rivarco Arwen. Even though these were royal parents no one could possibly have imagined the impact this litter would have in the breed, 7 multi champions out of 9 puppies, 3 BIS winners, name any possible championship available in Europe….. and all seven became in their turn champion producers, some with a dozen champion offspring to their credit. They were born in my bedroom and raised in my house in the middle of the winter, really a big task for me, and my family, but let’s say it was well worth the trouble!

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BIS: Are there any specific stud dogs/brood bitches in your variety, in your country, or globally, that you think have had an important impact on the breed? M.P.: I will name just a few, the ones who really changed history in their time, Sires: Ch. Pencloe Dutch Gold (through his sire Hillsdown Fergal) and Oakbark Middleman in UK, Ch. Adagio Love Supreme in Sweden, Ch. Delacreme Delarenta in the US…..almost impossible to find a whippet without any of the above in their pedigree. For bitches to make an impact is obviously more difficult even in this breed with no specific whelping problems and usually large litters, very humbly I must name that my own Ch.Rivarco Arwen is without any doubt the top producing dam in FCI history with 13 International Champion offspring from three different litters. I must mention Ch. Nutshell of Nevedith in UK, her first litter by Dutch Gold was probably one of the most successful at an International level, the litter was spread to the four corners of the world and became successful show dogs and producers in their turn. A special mention of a bitch from the old times, Siobhan of Hillsdown, dated 1981, she basically is in ANY British and European modern pedigree thru

prefix),also Jacki Bourdin’s du Manoir dela Grenouillere, all people I admired for their dedication to the breed. Gaetano was my first mentor of course but all of them inspired me in many ways, first that a good sound Whippet is never about exaggerations, each of them passed to me the passion about breeding and showing not just about winning. BIS: Which individuals of the sport have been your greatest inspiration and support? Did you have mentors, and how important was mentoring through the time being a breeder? M.P.: Apart from the above-mentioned people, for sure Roberto Vincenzi (Gotha kennel) was my guide through the difficult aspects of dog showing in Europe, he also taught me how to “survive” many situations, he was very demanding sometimes but I still keep some of his “secrets” which are like gold to me. I must also mention Bo Bengston (Bohème) who was an inspiration due to his being open minded and “International”, his view of the dog World was simply “planetary” and he passed on his ideas through his articles and magazines for decades.

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her offspring Ch.Hillsdown Fergal and Hillsdown Mollie. BIS: If you can use just three words to describe the breed, which three would you use? M.P.: Curvy, Athletic, Healthy BIS: On which things breeders should focus in this breed? M.P.: The smooth curves our breed is iconic for, there’s simply not a real whippet without them! BIS: How would you describe the ideal Whippets, and what traits do you think make up the essence of the breed? Answer: An elegant dog with a curvilinear silhouette going smoothly from the occiput down to the low set rear hock ideally without any abruption, Low, free moving and smooth, with reach in the forequarters and strong drive in the hindquarters, Whippets do not move like and Afghan Hound or a GSD BIS: Do you think there are any traits in the breed you fear are becoming exaggerated? M.P.: Length of neck, usually set into very straight shoulders. Overangulations behind and really long and flat toplines. Size to me IS NOT an issue! BIS: Please mention 2 to 3 Whippets which are not owned, bred or shown by yourself, that you particularly admired, and tell us what you most admired about each. M.P.: Show-wise I could mention many, but I will name just those that really changed my vision of the breed when saw them in flesh: Ch. Nutshell of Nevedith, she was simply the prototype of the modern model, Ch. Pencloe Dutch Gold, just the perfect stallion with no exaggerations, Ch. Starline’s Claim to Fame, the very first American big winner I had seen not just in papers…..simply a stunning and functional specimen, yet smooth all over. BIS: Which breeders do you cooperate most with, and why? M.P.: Rivarco, Adagio, Sportingfields, Patsy Gilmour (first under the Dumbriton and then the Courthill

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BIS: What is it like being part of the Whippet community? Is it welcoming to newcomers and supportive of successful breeders? M.P.: Yes I think it is quite an open community, very international and dedicated, we don’t have to deal with much coat or grooming and so we spend a lot of time exercising our dogs and being “social”, usually newcomers are very welcome. BIS: Whippets are large in numbers and is one of the breeds in the world that vary the most. Why do you think so many different variations of the breed type have come into existence and been accepted in the show ring? M.P.: The Whippet can be considered a young breed compared to others in the Sighthound group, also it is for sure the one influenced the most by other breeds which are recent ancestors of the Whippet. I always say that the Whippet breed is still evolving. BIS: How has the Whippet changed since the time since you first got involved with the breed? M.P.: Whippets became less sloppy in croup, more bony, with more reach and drive in profile movement and for sure brindles took over the fawns in numbers, on the whole. All in all I think that Whippets look more healthy nowadays and simply evolved into an animal with more structure (and yes, size) than before, still the excesses of some breeders also produced a large number of very flat, heavy dogs really not looking like the graceful and elegant dog it should be.

amended in the standards? M.P.: The American one I think, it is the most detailed one, the FCI one is really too generic and doesn’t describe the croup at all. The size limits should be widened up a bit in order to avoid the confusion and hypocrisy that have always surrounded the breed at shows. BIS: What is the most important point of which you would like a judge of your breed to be aware? M.P.: Whippets are not just “about the size “ !!! BIS: What are the most important characteristics to keep in mind for anyone wanting to become a good Sighthound judge? M.P.: Sighthounds cannot be judged on a book only, they must be lived with and “understood” first….. you can’t simply approach a Sighthound in the ring if you haven’t lived a bit (if possible) among them. Also their temperament makes them totally special among all the other breeds and sometimes they might not behave in the ring as other breeds, still it is part of their original attitude. BIS: What would be the most important single piece of advice you would give to all serious young breeders? M.P.: Just don’t go on Facebook to learn about your breed, live your breed in reality, go to the shows, watch, learn and ask questions, tons of questions, only after a while start to share your opinion and maybe after some years have your first litter !

BIS: Is there anything which you would like to change/improve in the breed in general? M.P.: Not at the moment, we need to evaluate the situation in 10-15 years BIS: What has been the biggest disappointment in breeding and showing for you so far? M.P.: the way Facebook has made everybody a “know all” after the first two months in our sport BIS: Which breed standard do you deem as best to describe the breed: the FCI, KC or AKC breed standard? Is there anything you think should be

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Sobresalto Whippets by Arnaldo Cotugno Interviewed by Mihaela Kosic

BIS: When did you get involved in dogs and how did you first come across Whippets? Which thing about the breed was (and still is) so special for you? A.C. : As a young boy, I moved to live with my three aunts in an old country house on the Posillipo Hill, located in the upper part of my hometown Naples. The house was surrounded by a fairly large property, where my aunts kept farm animals. I spent all my free time helping them take care of these animals, which taught me a great deal about breeding and livestock. The first dog to come into my life was a German Shepherd named Alex, who then accompanied me in my adventures for many years, followed by my Dalmatian, ‘Kevin’ at the end of my university years. Fascinated by art and beauty, I decided to become an architect. Whilst studying architecture, I discovered the influence of purebred dogs in art, and that some of the oldest and most beautiful paintings were of sight hounds. I believe it is already then that my love for Whippets began. Then, on a sunny afternoon, I was walking through a park in Naples with my Kevin, and there was a

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girl in her early twenties playing with an Afghan hound, a Great Dane and a Whippet. It was love at first sight. This is how I met my wife Annalisa. Our first Whippet united us in a merely a year. Before we started to breed under our prefix, we had a few litters of Dachshunds and Whippets. Soon, our hearts were taken over by the latter, and thus the story of Sobresalto began. BIS: Please tell us more about your first litter? A.C. : Our first Whippet litter, a singleton male, was born in March 1995. This litter, and another three that followed, did not carry our kennel name, because in Italy, to be recognized by the ENCI (Italian Kennel Club) as a breeder with an official prefix, one needs to have at least two litters, and the second litter needs to be at least a year old. We waited until 1997 for our kennel name to gain official status, so, this year in September, we will be celebrating Sobresalto’s 20th anniversary!


Photo 1 • WW’16 Int.It.A.Cro.Rus.Ch. Sobresalto XxX started her show career with a Best in Specialty Show at the Whippet World Club Show in 2015 and went on to become Italy’s Nr 2 Dog All Breeds (both in the ENCI and Cajelli system) and Top Sighthound (ENCI system) the following year, with 8 All-Breed Best in Shows on her account so far, having claimed the top award at the Insubria Winner Show two years in a row. She is also a World Winner and Donaueschingen Winner. Photo by Anna Szabò


BIS: What goals did you set for yourself as a beginner, and what goals are you pursuing now as a well-established breeder? A.C.:We were very lucky with Whippets. Naples is located in the south of Italy, and getting to the most important shows in Central Europe, or even further means driving at least 1000 km. Nevertheless, we always been active showing our dogs abroad as much as possible. We have attended the most high-profile specialties year after year, and the FCI World and European Dog Shows, and I’m proud to say we have had our fair share of winning at this level of competition. We have bred countless champions, many coursing champions, and World and European winners as well. Dogs of our breeding have been spread around the world, and have reveled in great success both in the show ring and in the whelping box. BIS: Your homebred SBIS Int.Ch. Sobresalto Jamiro Quai is one of the breed’s most influential studs and successful show dogs in history. What qualities made ‘Jami’ so successful both in the whelping box and in the show ring? A.C.: He was “The Special One”. Over the years, I have met only a handful of sight hounds who were a perfect convergence of type, balance, movement and incredible presence… well, he was one of those. 2006 was HIS year. He went on to win a Best in Show in Sweden and best beauty and performance to the French Whippet Nationals that year. Again, he was Supreme Best in Show in Donaueshingen the next year. ‘Jamiro’ ended his career in the most wonderful way we could have possibly thought of by claiming Veteran Best in Show at the FCI World Dog Show in Paris in 2011 with a stellar performance. It was imprinted in my memory for the rest of my life when I was asked by judges ‘not to touch what was already perfection’ when showing him in the ring. He was a natural! We bred him not “too much” with more than pleasing results. Numerous breeders around the world used him, and two of his daughters and a granddaughter are still living with us. He was a more elegant male compared to other Whippet males of the time, who 180

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Photo 2 • EUW’08 VWW’11 Int.It.It Soc.F.Ch. Sobresalto Jamiro Quai, one of the kennel’s most notable stud and show dogs, having sired 29 Champion offspring. He won Best in Show at the Swedish and best between coursing and beauty at French Whippet Club National Specialties and the prestigious Donaueschingen Sighthound Festival at the height of his career. He was shown at the World Show in Paris and made a big impression on many of those ringsides. Norwegian breed authority Espen Engh commented: “On only a very few occasions have I ever been as impressed with a whippet male as with Sobresalto Jamiro Quai in Paris. He had it all; the correct proportions, a stunningly smooth and curvy outline, the intense quality, the attitude, the typical supple and daisy-cutting movement. Simply one of the best whippets ever!” Photo by Paola Visentini

tended to be on the heavier side. When bred to the right brood bitches, typically those with a bit more substance, he produced what we really like. He threw classic type, curves and soundness into his progeny, with loins not too long and beautiful long necks, great temperament, and a movement to die for. Sadly, he passed away last year, he left a huge footprint on our breeding, since he can be traced back in most of our dogs’ pedigrees and we still have some frozen semen from him, so his part has probably not yet ended in our breeding program. BIS: You had a blast with WW’16 BIS SBIS Int.Ch. Sobresalto XxX throughout 2016, claiming the spot as Italy Nr 2 Dog All Breeds in both the ENCI and Cajelli systems (eventually beating both Number Ones in the two different systems). How would you describe the road to such a smashing record? A.C.: This is something I keep on asking myself … We had never shown so consistently in our own country


Photo 3 • EUW’13 Int.It.S. Sobresalto Ndringhete e Ndrà, European Winner, Best in Show at the prestigious Padenghe Sighthound Specialty in the year when it was held in conjunction with the Afghan Hound World Congress, and BIS at the most high-profile Sighthound Specialty in Austria. Photo by Nathalie Jaklewicz

before. We have always concentrated on big specialties around Europe, trying to show the Whippet world what we do here. Italy is well known for its master breeders of Sight hounds, but as far as the number of litters registered or exhibits at shows are considered, this is not really a Sight hound country, as opposed to for instance Scandinavia. ‘Sexy’ had her first, and truly generous, taste of success in the fall of 2015, when she won Best in Show at the prestigious Tulln (Austria) International and Insubria (Italy) Winner shows, defeating some 5000+ dogs combined at these two most high-profile shows of their respective countries. We then decided with her owner, Enrico de Gaspari, to show her in Italy throughout 2016, and we had an amazing run of winning! The ‘ENCI system’ only considers Best of Breed wins and the number of the dogs defeated on breed level, in which competition she was Runner-Up to the Chihuahua. The ‘CAJELLI system’ counts Group and Best in Show wins, whereas she was Nr2 to the Ital-

ian Greyhound (who was 3rd in the ENCI system as well). In addition to her accomplishments in Italy, ‘Sexy’ won her World Winner title as well last year. In 2015, she also won the Donaueschingen Winner title at Europe’s most coveted and prestigious Sight hound Specialty in Donaueschingen, Germany. This is not just a success of a single dog, breeder or owner, but also that of teamwork and kinship. I will never forget the tremendous support we got from all our puppy buyers and friends, weekend after weekend. BIS: Approximately how many litters do you have a year? A.C.: We have constantly bred three litters a year from 1997 to 2017, and hope to continue with this agenda in the future. It might seem easy, but I can assure you it is not.

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power. Neither of the two traits should be superior to the other, nor should one gravitate our attention before the other. It should simply be a ‘pure fusion’ of the two. We must always keep in mind that we are talking about a sportive breed made for hunting and covering both long distances with endurance and short distances with speed. On the other hand, this powerful engine must be of a frame of elegant, smooth lines. Proper muscle tone is essential: it must be elongated and functional, flattened and adherent to the body, to ensure adequate aerodynamics and large extension on the field.

Photo 4 • Int.It.It Soc.Nl.D.Ch. Sobresalto Pourquoi Pas, another highly successful stud of Sobresalto’s with 26 Champion offspring on his account, championed several of the most prestigious titles in Europe, including the Donaueschingen, Amsterdam and Bundessieger winner titles. Douring his career Arnaldo and the friend Dominique Delabelle (di Mahana - B) showed him around. Photo by Sobresalto

BIS: What are your long-term goals in breeding? A.C.: Year after year, we are hoping for the next standout of each Sobresalto generation to be born, who then will carry the torch, so we can continue with our aim to breed the next better Whippet. There is always something to improve on, and we strongly desire to strengthen the weaknesses of our breeding stock. It is wonderful to sit at the table and discuss dogs, pedigrees and our future breeding program, I personally love it. We plan one or two years ahead and rarely have we changed our plans. BIS: What are the main characteristics of the dogs you breed? What are your goals in the breeding program? A.C.: Considering the now more than 20 years we have been actively breeding, I can say we are proud of what we have achieved in terms of breeding our ideal Whippet. We worked hard, and I think our dogs’ main characteristic is balance between power and elegance, which is the goal in our breeding program. Whippets are supposed to be of the right combination between grace and muscular 182

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BIS: What do you consider your greatest achievement as a breeder? A.C.: I believe the main aim of any true breeder is to breed dogs that correspond to their interpretation of the breed standard, and we’ve been lucky to live up to our own expectations by having bred several dogs who were/are very close that ideal of ours. Needless to say, we care for all our puppies and their owners, and feel so privileged to have met so many nice people… I am probably most proud of the fact that our puppy buyers and us make up a delightful community both in our professional and even our private lives. At shows, the ‘Sobresalto family’ are so supportive of each other, applauding each other regardless which one of them takes the top award - this is truly a heart-warming experience, no matter how many times we live it through. BIS: Are there any specific stud dogs/brood bitches in your breed, either in your country or globally, whom you think have had an important impact on the breed? A.C.: There have been many dogs and bitches who impressed me for various reasons, but I have decided to name just one of each sex of recent breeding. A bitch who had a great impact on the breed was Hillsdown Mollie, bred by Phil Moran Healy in the UK and owned by M.me Jacqueline Bourdin in France. As for males, the one stud who had a huge influence on the breed was Adagio Love Supreme, bred by Stefan Råghammar in Sweden. BIS. If you can use just three words to describe the


breed, which three would you use? A.C.: My three words are SILHOUETTE, ELEGANCE and POWER. BIS: On which things should breeders focus in this breed? A.C.: Good question. Whippet breeders in general are quite clever and have been able to breed away from bad fronts and poor movement, which used to be a much bigger problem in the breed than now, in the past 15 years. Size is coming down year by year, with bitches having arrived to quite an ideal stage compared with the past. Males still tend to grow too big for my taste at times. Up-and coming breeders need to realize they can’t change everything in just one generation, it takes time to come closer to their ideal, and can only progress by small steps at one time. This breed does not take extreme combinations well and no miracle can be expected just after raising one litter. Never forget type, temperament, size and above all, balance. BIS: How would you describe the ideal Whippet, and what traits do you think make up the essence of the breed? A.C.: It is generally believed that the ideal Whippet possesses a series of S-shaped curves without any abruptions or coarseness, other than at the hocks. Let us try to understand what this phrase is supposed to stand for. The head should be long, with a flat skull that becomes thinner towards the muzzle. The head is dry, the axes of muzzle and skull parallel to each other, with slight distance between the eyes and with a slight stop, which is a very breed specific feature. The neck should be more than long enough, muscular, clean and gracefully arched. A good length of neck is essential for a breed built for speed. A neck too short or coarse, as well as an excessively long and fragile one would limit a Whippet’s working abilities. The function of the ‘galloping neck’ is that of the ‘cervical rocker’, which in the extended suspension phase counterbalances the weight of the whole body, and in the phase of maximum contraction, keeps it from falling forward. Let us not forget that the neck should smoothly flow from the

Photo 5 • Int.It.It Soc.S.E.Ch. Sobresalto Rendez Vous - Donaueschingen & Swedish Winner, Best of Breed at Jerastellungen in Germany. Photo by Sobresalto

occiput into the shoulders, with the least possible abruptions. Now, as for the WHIPPET back-limb arch in detail: we can only observe this in the light of the function for which the breed was created: even if we tend to sympathize with the breed’s romanticized purpose, which is hunting, “the poor man’s greyhound” was actually used for poaching, rabbit coursing and “rag racing,” which was the forerunner of today’s lure coursing and track racing. Therefore, we can conclude the very trait Whippets were desired to excel in was speed. We ought to highlight the hinge in the lumbar area, which allows it to release all its power, the key area to achieve the doublesuspension gallop, a strong and powerful limb that enables the Whippet to a long and energetic jump. The croup ideally resembles the shape of an arch, and just like an arch, it should retain great flexibility. This curve empowers the dorsum with a function like that of bow when it shoots an arrow, most visible during the phase of maximum contraction of the double suspension gallop. Followed by the extended suspension phase, when the spine extends itself completely to allow the rear to discharge its power from the ground. At this stage, the front legs are fully extended forward and the rear legs backwards. The ability to move from a completely Best in Show Magazine

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Photo 6 • Int.It.It Soc.Cro.Ch. Sobresalto Standing Ovation has been one of the breed’s most prominent show dogs in Italy recently and became her owner, Giovanni Liguori’s foundation bitch when she gave birth to his first ever-homebred Whippet litter. Photo by Nathalie Jaklewicz

stretched phase to a completely bent one is essential in fast dogs. It is of paramount importance to understand that the outline of a Whippet when stacked must be kept during trotting as well, the topline holding its shape firm and strong on the move. The chest should be well developed, as deep as the elbows and the ribs well sprung. An excessively deep chest lessens the ability to run, but at the same time a chest not deep, enough would not leave enough room for the heart to function. A correct tail is another crucial trait in the breed, as it acts as a rudder during sudden changes of direction in the different stages of racing. It must be long enough, and with a ‘smooth design’. The correct length is long enough to reach the tip of the hock, although, ideally, it should be slightly longer. It should maintain a smooth curve in action and never carried higher than the level of the back.

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BIS: Do you think there are any traits in the breed you fear are becoming exaggerated? A.C.: Exaggerations are to be avoided in every breed. Necks of excessive legnth, extreme rear angulations that oftentimes come without any balance with the front, size and big ears are some examples of exaggerations we mostly encounter in Whippets. BIS: Please mention 2 to 3 Whippets which are not owned, bred or shown by yourself, that you particularly admired, and tell us what you most admired about each. A.C.: Softouch Pinquana, bred by Pirjo Muhonen in Finland Daydream di Mahana, bred by Dominique and Marie Christine Delabelle in Belgium Spyanfly Say It’s Bardo, bred by Pauline Oliver in the UK Twyborn Swanley Gem, bred by Michael Vikström


ling of Gentle Mind from Germany. And last but not least, Katie Rudolph of Festiva’s from the USA, who kindly leased us Festiva’s Been There Done That, ‘Steven’ to us for a couple of years to be shown and bred here in Europe. He left a substantial impact behind him both as a stud and show dog.

Photo 7 • It.Ch. Sobresalto Vuelta Ganar, only selectively shown and already successfully bred, she was Reserve CACIB at the FCI World Dog Show in Helsinki in 2014. Photo by Nathalie Jaklewicz

in Sweden Paris Beatrix of Tiber, bred by Sharon Saxon Paris Panther, bred by Sharon Sakson in the US Rum Punch of Falconcrag, bred by Miss R F K Chapman in the UK Beautiful Dreamer du Sac á Malices, bred by Karen Mésavage Sporting Field Jazz Fest, bred by Debbie Butt in the US These Whippets truly impressed me with how they simply oozed breed type and their extraordinary movement. BIS: Which breeders do you cooperate most with, and why? A.C.: We have collaborated with several breeders here in Europe and in the US. We have always been focused on dogs that appealed the most our own ideal, as opposed to on just the list of ‘great winners’, trying to create our own powerful bloodline. We have had a great relationship over the years, and we still cooperate, with Nenne Runsten of Airescot from Sweden, from whom we acquired Airescot Justina Casagli, a crucial brood bitch to us, our friends Joachim Bartusch and Werner Dammer-

BIS: Which individuals of the sport been your greatest inspiration and support? Did you have mentors, and how important was mentoring through the time being a breeder? A.C.: I would like to highlight four people above all, whose knowledge have been just priceless and so inspirational to us: Baron Piero Renai della Rena of “di Farneto” Mr Bo Bengtson of “Bohem” from Sweden/US, the aforementioned Nenne Runsten of “Airescot”. Their views are much reflected in our breeding philosophy. In the dog sport, it is not always easy to learn from others, as many people have an overly narrowminded approach to breeding and limited knowledge, or people who are overly sensitive. BIS: What is it like being part of the Whippet community? Is it welcoming to newcomers and supportive of successful breeders? A.C.: The community is supportive. We ourselves have always supported all those who have asked our help; giving any advince and help they needed, from breeding to showing. We enjoy sharing our knowledge with our fellow Whippet fanciers. Bianca is the first and Giovanni Liguori is the lastest example of how we believe in supporting others. BIS: Whippets are large in numbers and is one of the breeds in the world that vary the most. Why do you think so many different variations of the breed type have come into existence and been accepted in the show ring? A.C.: I personally think the coexistence of several variations of the type, as far as adequately corresponding with the breed standard, is very beneficial for our breed. Our breed standard, like many English breed standards, is open to various interpretations. Sadly, we tend to forget that to breed for function is the very key to breeding a good Whippet, whilst Best in Show Magazine

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some focus solely on breeding the next racer. These are the two most distinct approaches to the breed, which have, to a degree, split the breed up to two different breeds - if not as extreme as in the case of Greyhounds, though. These extremes, however, are to be avoided so that or breeding doesn’t get too far from the standard. BIS: How did Whippets change over time since you first got involved with the breed? A.C.: Many things have changed in our breed over the years, but most of all the knowledge people possess. 20 years ago, what people knew about dogs was very precious. There was a much keener interest in thorough studies and research on the breed. At that time, the flow of information was entirely different from that of today. At that time we had to wait for days, weeks or even months for a show result, photo or news of a litter to reach us. Yet, people were truly interested in knowing about the breed, and would dig deep into history/tradition to find what he or she was looking for. During one of my visits to Bo Bengtson and Paul Lepiane in Los Angeles, I was privileged to have an insight into Bo’s extensive studies on Whippets, which took him years to finish. He collected on the paper not only names and titles, but also records and notes in an enormous panorama of dogs of the past in the Scandinavian countries and England. I was so impressed by the work Bo did for years: from when he started showing Fleeting Flamboyant, his first whippet born in the UK in 1964, before I was born, until he left Sweden. I felt truly privileged to see it. The big change we have now is the unlimited and constant flow of information online, which dilutes the appetite for precious and valuable studies and the ‘pure interest’ in valid knowledge in a way. Much of this information is made up and spread by self-proclaimed ‘breed experts’, and are based on everything, except adequate knowledge of the breed or the sport. I have encountered too many of them during the years... I constantly find people who believe they know everything about everything just by having scrolled through pictures and having read posts on social media, ending up with breeding purely on ‘Facebook basis’, often only to breed puppies that we do not at all need. 186

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BIS: Is there something, which you would like to change/improve in the breed in general? A.C.: We have worked towards reaching proper size for many years, and we still have not quite got there, especially in the males, since in females the situation is a bit better. For many years, we have tried to breed for a lovely, softly curved and sound body, which many of us have succeeded in obtaining. Although, some have gone too far and their Whippets have become rather long and flat. We ought to do something against this new fashion of Whippets with untypical, exaggerated movement. We need to keep in mind that a good Whippet is sound, effortless with a good length of leg; the front pasterns flatten the grass during the trot, which requires low and long steps. Many are easily satisfied with producing a good mover the easy way by breeding a long and low-legged Whippet. Such anatomy seems to allow them to cover more ground while they move, but does not correspond with the breed standard. The size of thighs needs to be addressed as well. We particularly should know the thigh is the triangle of the iliac crest, ischial tuberosity and knee… if the lowest part of the croup falls away too steeply, this triangle is flattened, resulting in an overly narrow thigh. Another very wrong tendency becoming more and more frequent is dogs who are completely disproportionate in terms of front and rear angulations. All too often, I see dogs who are straight in front, but are far too generously angled in the rear. Finally yet importantly, never forget character. Today, Whippets are first and foremost companions living in the house and on the sofa, if not in our beds, and so their temperament needs to be just that of a family pet. BIS: Which breed standard do you deem as best to describe the breed: the FCI, KC or AKC breed standard? Is there anything you think should be amended in the standards? A.C.: The AKC and FCI/UK each contribute to the whole picture. To be honest, the AKC standard describes its ‘own standard’ best. Which doesn’t neces-


sarily mean it is better than the others are. We follow our own standard at home, FCI/UK and frankly, some interesting comments on the standard, giving us a good point of view. BIS: What is the most important point of which you would like a judge of your breed to be aware? A.C.: I can teach nothing to my fellow judges, really. That said, our breed is not at all a simple one to judge, due to the high number and quality of entries, especially at specialty shows. Particular attention should be placed on what the dogs ‘tell’ us when we move them around… this for me is crucial. If their outline alters too much on the move from what we see standing, we need to reevaluate them again. I meant to say, a good handler can present the same dog in three or four different ways, but when the dog is asked to move, all its true qualities will be revealed to us… This is the moment we can truly evaluate the Whippet’s qualities. I therefore suggest that my fellow judges examine a Whippet standing (ideally on a free stack) and then to move, before making their final conclusions of each exhibit.

men, go to see it yourself, even if it lives on the other side of the world. This is essential before using a stud dog, as well as studying its progeny. Before breeding on from an ordinary bitch, who on the other hand is of worthy bloodline, be sure she is a good interesting female and remember that some studies on the progeny confirmed that puppies would take 70% of themselves from the mother. It might be a good beginning to start with the right bitch and not waste time on lesser individuals.

BIS: What are the most important characteristics to keep in mind for anyone wanting to become a good sight hound judge? A.C.: I actually think that starting out as a sight hound fancier helps a great deal. In our breeds, when you judge a major specialty, you will see so many nice dogs and the differences are imperceptible at first glance. When judging other breeds, we notice many faults we fortunately do not have. My suggestion is to read a lot, especially on the rare breeds. Studying standards is not enough for a proper understanding of any breed, actually. We need to read compendiums and books, and exercise our eyes on various breeds by talking with wellestablished breeders to be able to visualize our own interpretation of the breed standards. BIS: What would be the most important single piece of advice you would give to all serious young breeders? A.C.: My suggestion is not to blindly fall for titles or photos of Whippets. If you are interested in a speciBest in Show Magazine

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Analysis of Breed Standards GREYHOUNDS by Espen Engh Probably the World’s most widely traveled dog judge, Espen Engh combines this with being an active and highly successful breeder and exhibitor. Literally born into the dog world, he and his mother, the late Kari Engh started breeding in 1975 and thus the kennel’s success saga began. The Jet’s Greyhounds have left and continue to have an invaluable impact on the breed worldwide. His judging is defined by dedication, passion and a deep love of dog history and tradition. This article below, composed by Anna Szabo. is a glimpse into his breakthrough masterpiece of an analysis he wrote to uncover and compare the most important aspects of the Greyhound standards.


Breed Standards are our most important tools in understanding any breed in depth; they are often referred to as the blueprint of the breed. (…) It is extremely difficult to paint a word picture of something which is not only as beautiful, but also as complex as a Greyhound. The word The word pictures that we refer to as Breed Standards will be interpreted differently by different readers, and without a basic knowledge of anatomy, movement and dog terminology, the Standards mean very little. Neither does the text itself spell out with any exactness the priorities among all those important traits that make up a dog. It takes a great deal of experience and knowledge to interpret the Breed Standards correctly. Fortunately, we have available a couple of important tools to assist us in interpreting the Standards: the breed’s function on one hand and the breed’s history and tradition on the other. In other words, the Standards should be studied and understood in the light of function and history. The Greyhound has, through many centuries, been an incredibly efficient hunter; the breed’s very raison d’etre s the live coursing of hares and other game. Please observe that throughout this discussion the word ’hare’ ill be used as being synonymous with game, while fully realising that Greyhounds also have been used to hunt and course several other species, including rabbits, as well as gazelles and other large game. Throughout the centuries, more or less detailed descriptions of the ideal Greyhound have appeared, the most famous of which are probably the ones attributed to Flavius Arrianus (1st century BC) and Dame Juliana Berners (late 15th century). However, it was not until after the advent of the first recorded British dg show (in Newcastle-on-Tyne in 1859) that the breed as we know them was recognised. One of the judges at that very first dog show was Dr John Henry Walsh, better known under the pseudonym of Stonehenge. Stonehenge was not only the father of the concept of dog Standards as we know them, but was particularly interested in and knowledgeable about Greyhounds. His books Dogs of the British Islands and The Greyhound have been much studied and admired, and they both ran into several editions. 190

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the USA and Canada, Greyhounds are judged by another Standard referred to as the AKC Standard below.

Greyhounds are judged by the Kennel Club (London) Standard in almost all countries in the world, including Great Britain, Australia and all the countries of the FĂŠdĂŠration Cynologique International (FC). This Standard is referred to as the KC Standard in he following analysis of the Breed Standards. In

GENERAL APPEARANCE KC: Strongly built, upstanding, of generous proportions, muscular power and symmetrical formation, with long head and neck, clean well laid shoulders, deep chest, capacious body, arched loin, powerful quarters, sound legs and feet, and a suppleness of limb, which emphasize in a marked degree its distinctive type and quality. The Greyhound is a breed with relatively few breed-specific traits. As opposed to some other breeds of dogs, notably Toy breeds, Greyhounds are not much about details at all. On the contrary, Greyhound breeders should rather strive for the optimal general appearance both standing and moving, and judges should, above all else, strive to recognise and reward this. The general appearance, much more than anything else, is what defines type in Greyhounds, and thus the overall impression is paramount. As can be deduced from the introduction to this chapter, the British Greyhound Standard was written by experts on the breed for the connoisseurs of the breed, not by amateurs for amateurs. Quite a few things go without saying, the word Greyhound itself being a household name for every person on the British Islands, although not always so for people from other nations. To an Englishman, the word Greyhound instantly brings about an image of a fast, long-legged, long-necked and elegant dog. That a Greyhound should possess elegance is taken for granted, and has not even been deemed necessary for inclusion in the description of the general appearance. The word elegant, when describing a Greyhound, should not at all equate with weedy or delicate, but elegance should be stemming from the flow of the lines, the length of neck, the beauty of the formation and the definition of the muscles, as well as from the quality of the skin and coat. The sum of these traits is a high degree of thoroughbred quality, where nothing at all has been left to coincidence. Elegance is of great importance, but equally the Greyhound is a strong dog with good bone and Best in Show Magazine

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ample body, never to appear too refined, weedy or weak. Strength and power are important qualities to look for in a stud dog and equally so in a good brood bitch, even though the bitch should, of course, be a feminine version. One of the main challenges of breeding Greyhounds is to obtain that exquisite balance between strength and power on the one hand and elegance and quality on the other. The Standard of a closely related breed, the Whippet, beautifully describes the general appearance as a balanced combination of muscular power and strength with elegance and grace of outline. This could just as well have been a description of a Greyhound. An overly big and strong, chunky and clumsy dog would not be able to hunt hares, nor would an overly refined, delicate dog be able to do a day’s work. Both these extremes are relatively easy to breed; combining the strength with the quality and elegance takes much more skill. The Greyhound should be an upstanding dog of generous proportions, meaning that the breeder should strive for a dog with good length of leg but, at the same time, a dog built on flowing lines, covering plenty of ground. This is another difficult balance to achieve, but such a joy to behold when present. Again, this is a most essential part of the breed type. Additionally implied by the term upstanding is a proud dog with regal bearing. A Greyhound should be a king of dogs, demanding attention, and never merely a commoner. The reference to musculature is repeated several 192

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times both in the British and American Standards. Perhaps needless to say, correct musculature is crucial in creating a functional dog. A Greyhound should have long, flat and elastic muscles as opposed to bulky and heavy ones. The muscle one should, nevertheless, be hard, but not to the point of limiting elasticity or detracting from the smoothness of the outline. Symmetrical formation refers to the all-important overall balance of the dog and how the parts fit together to create a harmonious overall impression. The sweeping and beautifully rounded flow of lines, without abruptness, from the tip of the nose through the neck and body to the tip of the tail constitutes the epitome of Greyhound type. The smooth flow of lines, including both the topline and the underline, has been aptly described as a series of beautifully blended unexaggerated Scurves. The correct outline is further highlighted under the headings ’neck’ and ’body’. How could the Greyhound Standard possibly denote the importance of a functional dog in a better way than insisting on a suppleness of limb, which emphasises in a marked degree the breed’s distinctive type and quality? This is another very cleverly worded key phrase in the KC Standard, providing an important link between the ability to manoeuvre and the distinctive type and quality of the outstanding Greyhound. Suppleness, above anything, is just what a Greyhound needs to be able to catch the prey, or to cut it off if working in co-operation with a fellow hunter. Speed itself is of less importance as the dog is far quicker than the hare anyway. Without that extreme suppleness of limb, and, we may like to add, of the loin, thedog would be helpless against the hare. This suppleness is another key element in Greyhound type. The Greyhound should definitely be muscular, but his muscles should enhance rather than restrict elasticity and freedom of movement. Also included in the description of the general appearance ar the references to a long head and neck, clean and well laid shoulders, the deep chest and capacious body, the arch of loin, the powerful quarters and the sound legs and feet, all important in the breed. The inclusion of these traits in the general appearance section serves to attract special attention to these features at the expense of other and less important traits. (...)


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Boughton Greyhounds by Clare Boggia Interviewed by Mihaela Kosic

BIS: Boughton since the 1930s…. Your family has been involved in purebred pedigree dogs for an incredible four generations now. Please tell us about your great-grandparents’ involvement in the dog sport. C.B.: My paternal great grandfather originally lived in Plymouth later moving to Truro in Cornwall in the late 1890s. Whilst in Plymouth he had rough collies, predominantly blue merles. In Truro they lived in a terraced house and had some kennels at the bottom of the garden – here he ventured into French bulldogs during the 1914-18 war. My grandfather who was away fighting in the war, does not recall these, so I can only presume they were short lived. It wasn’t until 1920s that he ventured into smooth fox terriers. After getting married my grandfather then ventured into greyhounds in the 1930s. My grandfather’s daughter, Monica Boggia-Black kept the flag flying and has bred and owned several breeds as well. Her brother married my mother in 1960 and whippets and French bulldogs became the main love of my mother Alfreda Boggia who judged both breeds as well as breeding them Alfreda’s grandmother owned and showed Landseer Newfoundland’s; whilst I am unsure how she

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got involved with these, I do know that her father worked in the royal household in London during the Victorian era so I like to think it was Queen Victoria’s influence – however I doubt this! BIS: Since the beginnings, your family have fancied several different breeds. Which were these and why choose to get involved with them? C.B.: My father’s family came from Cornwall after immigrating to the UK in the late 1800s from Como in Italy. As is well documented the Cornish dog folk were very into their terriers which is what my great grandfather started out with and later ventured into greyhounds; Cornwall was seen as the home of the greyhound at this time. Grandfather, A G ‘Bill’ Boggia, moved to Kent in 1940 and purchased the house I live in today! He was very active with the greyhounds in the 1940s and 1950s. My aunt, Monica Boggia Black has had various breeds and had them simply because she liked them! Her favourite breed will probably always be the greyhounds although she has a deep love of Bedlington terriers, whippets, SFT and Löwchens. My mother, after her marriage to Dad, was given a whippet by Monica which was the start of her


Photo 2 • Ch. Boughton Benvoluto

owning whippets her entire life. She specialised in black and blue colour; often writing articles about colour inheritance. We alternated the weekends, racing one and showing the other to ensure dual purpose hounds! We were also given an older red greyhound by Mrs. Christian of the Ballymoy kennel when I was very young. He was a dear and we called him Sporty, he was so placid and let me and my brother dress him up and he never got fed up with us playing with him. Latterly my mother had French bulldogs, a breed which she had always yearned for! She was very active in the Frenchie’s and was chairman of the French Bulldog Club of England. They were great fun to live with having immense personalities. Sadly my mother died young. BIS: It was your renowned grandfather who introduced Greyhounds into the family. Where did he acquire his foundation stock from? What was the Greyhound scene like at the time? C.B.: Great Grandfather very friendly with Harry Peak. Grandfathers first greyhound was Treluswell Princess, bred by Barney Stevens (he was predominantly a WFT man who also had greyhounds) who lived in Perranporth. He was a coal merchant. During the Second World War my grandparents moved to Kent, working as tailors. They had a shop in Faversham with house over the top until they bought Boughton House – hence the affix which was first registered in the stud book in 1941. Treluswell Princess came with them and I recall Nana telling me 196

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very proudly that she won best in Show 23 times! Despite living in Kent, Nana and Grandfather often returned to Cornwall as their family was still there and at this time, Cornwall was the heart of greyhounds, with most of the breeders at the time living there. George Murton and E J ‘Ernie’ Sobey were behind my grandfather’s love of greyhounds. My father recalls George Murton always being at the shows – according to him, didn’t dress well, and grandfather was always well suited and booted and wore a bowler hat, but there was a strong friendship. He handled other people’s dogs and unlike E J Sobey who was a well-respected judge, George never judged, but according to Dad he had a very good eye for a dog. The first time that Ernie Sobey gave CC’s in greyhounds was in 1923 at Taunton and District Dog Association, here he gave CCs to the bitch Ch Fascinating Ways and DCC to Fire Water – note the initials ‘FW’ – this kennel was owned by Miss F A White. Miss Frances White was a wealthy owner who hailed from Essex and was a dominant force in the 1920s. Her first major winner was Wolvey Flight (note initials reversed here) who won the CC at Crufts in 1912 under judge Mr. Harding Cox. Another interesting fact about Frances White was that she took her greyhound from John O’Groats(the most northerly part of UK) to Landsend (most southerly part) 1,407kilometers. Although Ernie Sobey judged greyhounds on several occasions I cannot see that he ever judged Crufts. However I digress!! Clearly World War two put a halt to dog showing and the Kennel Club stud book ceased in 1939 until 1948 so no records for that period sadly. However in 1948 it appears grandfather was judging Greyhounds for the first time at Richmond Dog Show Society which is still going today. His CCs on that day was Ch Fleet of Trevore, bred and owned by Mr. Jack Phillips. BCC was Carnlanga Corsair from Jesse Prowse’s’ famous kennel. There were 10 shows that year with CCs and Ch Fleet of Trevore won 4 and grandfathers dog Ch Boughton Blue Lad (bred by Peter George) won the remaining 6, including Crufts! During this period my family were very friendly with the Dunn family and to this day my father is


still in contact with them- they still live in Cornwall. My grandmother had a dog from Dunn’s called Newham Princess – her pet/call name was called Monica – the reason I recall this dog, as there was a beautiful huge photograph of her in the lounge when I was a child, sadly I have no idea where this went. Another dog that grandfather had during this period was Barnaloft Brochure – according to the Kennel Stud book he was bred by Jack Phillips (his kennel name was Trevore) and co-owned with Barney Stevens. The reason I mention this dog is that he was sired by an unregistered dog called King, which you were able to do then. Grandfather was very friendly with Douglas Todd (Wingedfoot whippets) in the 1950s, they lived near to each other and bought several dogs based on each other’s advice. His daughter is Jenny Baxter who still has whippets to this day and it is lovely that only this week she came to Boughton House to see the latest litter of puppies – Both grandad and Jenny’s dad would have loved to have been there too!! Dorothy Lewis (of Test whippets) was a frequent visitor too – she had a greyhound called Greta Ranee of Test, bred by Eve Young. Jenny Baxter recalls this brindle bitch living in their house until she was sold onto Mrs G Jackson and Mr. Bobby James. Sadly during the late 1940s and 1950s money was still hard to come about and dogs appeared to have been sold on quite readily to keep afloat financially. Going back to Ch Greta Ranee of Test – I have never been able to find a photograph of her, so if anyone knows please let me know!! Grandfather awarded CCs in 1950 at Ladies Kennel Association where he awarded two famous dogs CCs – Seagift Parcancady Leader and Parcancady Heatherbelle. Both dogs were of course bred by Peter George (aka the wizard!) and were littermates – what a lovely day for this kennel. Interestingly I note that a dog grandfather had, called Parcancady Lancer was out of the same mother, Parcancady Lady. Lancer was whelped only 8 months after Parcancady Leader and Heatherbelle litter – this is something that we cannot do in the UK now. Parcancady Lady actually has six registered litters, again the Kennel Club will only allow a maximum of four litters be registered from any dam now,

if born naturally, otherwise two litters. BIS: Your Aunt, Dr Monica Boggia-Black, is an icon in British dog sport. Tell us about her achievements as a judge, exhibitor and breeder. C.B.: After being bought up with dogs and showing them as a young girl, Monica went to university and then afterwards went to live and work in Czechoslovakia. After returning she resumed showing and made up champions in several breeds including several Löwchens – a breed she judged earlier this year at Bath championship show. Monica has served on many canine general open show committees and is a well-known figure in Kent, still stewarding and helping out at shows! She has also served on committees of several breed clubs too. She is one of the top female judges in the UK awarding CCs in 36 breeds and judges all groups except gundogs at championship level as well as best in show at championship level. She gave her first set of CCs at Bath championship show and it was this show that invited her to judge her first group. She has judged the Hound Group at Crufts where she awarded the group to a saluki. She has also awarded CCs in greyhounds 14 times in UK, but top of the list is Bedlington terriers - 20 times. When she judged greyhounds at Crufts in 1988 she awarded Rita and Paul Bartlett’s male Ch Ransley Fortune Seeker DCC and BOB and bitch CC went to Michael and Jackie Whites black bitch Sulamin Crystal Gayle of Baldrey (winning her 2nd CC on the day, but was made up later that year under Dagmar Kenis). When I asked Aunty what the highlights of her judging career for this article she told me she loved doing club shows, as elected by the membership and therefore always a great honour. She especially loved being elected President of the Smooth Fox Terrier club and judging their championship show. She also recalls giving Ch Royal Portrait a hound group at Blackpool championship show in 1988 and what a beautiful bitch she was. What is it you acquired from being born into such a successful ‘dog dynasty’? C.B.: When I first thought about getting a dog to seBest in Show Magazine

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Photo 3 • Ch. Boughton Blue Lad

riously show for myself I made a deliberate decision to find one on my own and with no influence from the family. I wanted to make my own decisions!! That being said, I guess they had instilled into me to do your homework in looking at stock as a whole and not the individual dog! Although as you put it, I come from a dog dynasty, we have always been small scale dog owners and never had kennel help etc. and it was always instilled to me to look after the animals to the best of our abilities as they are pets first and foremost. BIS: So, when and how did you decide to go on with Greyhounds? What is it that sold you on the breed? Where did you get your own Greyhounds from, and how are they connected to that of our grandfather’s? C.B.: I lived abroad and then in London as a young woman so having a dog was not practical. When I moved back to Kent I wanted my own hound to show. I shortlisted three breeds at the time, Deerhound, Hamiltonstovare and Greyhound. I went 198

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to their respective club shows and watched them at Crufts. Some unhelpful and very judgmental comments from one of the breed owners made me dismiss that breed! However something in my mind always went back to seeing the lovely blue bitch Ch Shalfleet Sea Dancer in the mid 1970s at a show – (bred by Barbara Wilton Clarke) who was owned by Nenne Pedersen of the famous Hubbestad kennel – in fact Sea Dancer was Nennes’ first greyhound too! - I kept going back to this bitch in my mind, hence greyhounds it was! My parents were on holiday when a dog sitter came to look after my mother’s dogs – she was Sorcha Wilde (Sheila Kemp) of the famous Witchesbroom Irish Wolfhound kennel. We were talking about my desire for a show dog and that I had been looking for the right one for nearly two years when she mentioned she happened to know where there was a litter. So the next day we went to Peters Farm to the famous Solstrand kennel of Dagmar Kenis. Dagmar was so generous in letting me choose my own puppy from what I recall as a totally blue brindle litter. I did not tell my parents and after collecting ‘Folly’ a few weeks later introduced her. Getting my own dog was something that I had to do myself without any ‘family interference’! Of course, Folly was the most elegant and beautiful creature, (I am just a bit biased you understand!) but she did become a UK champion which is no mean feat! - Ch Solstrand Fait Accompli. Folly had several lines back to my grandfather’s Paracancady Lancer (who was the father of the famous and influential sire Ch. Treetops Hawk) BIS: What is your breeding philosophy? C.B.: I always try to keep an open mine while using selective judgment to assess the dogs. I tend to use good old fashioned common sense based on my experience and research. I like to think I know my pedigrees and look at the whole line not just the individual dogs to establish that they are of similar type. Of course I must make mention of the importance of soundness – for me, this is most important – look at the siblings and grandparents. I have seen some lovely dogs over the years, but they are poor movers, and on the whole, I think this is hard to breed out.


Lastly do not be kennel blind – look at what could be better in your own bitch and find a male that has something better in these areas, whilst still retaining the type and things that are important to you. BIS: Even though having bred on a rather smallscale, your home-bred Boughtons have certainly made their presence felt in the show ring. Please name the most notable Boughton Greyhounds and tell us about their achievements, whether in the show ring or whelping box. C.B.: I am afraid I am not one for keeping lists of titles, win etc. and do not overly show so the dogs I mention are my personal loves! I very rarely let my dogs go abroad so all titles relate to UK. I guess most people will consider Ch Bougthon Benvoluto as my most notable greyhound and indeed he was a true stallion hound who won many CCs and awards including best in show at the Hound Association prestigious championship Show, best in show at French Club show (over 100 greyhounds entered) and top sire in the UK many times, and runner up all breeds. He was paralysed when seven weeks old from a presumed spinal emboli and the vets at the specialist animal hospital only gave him a 50:50 chance – luckily for me, with lots of hydrotherapy and love he fully recovered, therefore it was a huge honour for the late great judge Mr. Terry Thorn to award him a CC at 7 months – very unusual in the UK! However for me, I loved my Ch Boughton Bonheur ‘Gypsy’ – she just exuded breed type and was not exaggerated in any shape or form. She could also course well. She won at the Greyhound Club two years in a row and had two lovely litters including being mother to Ch Boughton Benvoluto and Ch Boughton Banchieri, who another beautiful typy and unexaggerated bitch. Sadly Banchieri was never bred from. I have owned top brood bitch as well for many years, but perhaps the best of these has been Ch Bellezza di Boughton (a daughter of Benvoluto) who was runner up top brood bitch all breeds in 2015 – her CC winning children include Ch Boughton Blakeney, Ch Boughton Brigadier, Boughton Bold and Brave at Dawnchase, Boughton Blenheim, Ch Boughton Balance of Power at Azrams, Ch Boughton Back to

Blighty and Ch Boughton Balanchine. I should also mention Boughton Baggio (after a favourite football player Roberto Baggio!) In my view, he is a most handsome male with superb shoulders, good in fill, excellent return of arm, curvaceous body and good hindquarters. Sadly he hated showing, always hanging his head low and not keen on moving and then when still young he also lost a fair part of his tail due to trauma and therefore despite winning a CC and reserve CCs I withdrew him from the ring. However he has been top stud dog in UK and has some beautiful puppies in both Germany (Inas Fashion kennel) and Australia (Whirlaway kennel) – these dogs have done very well and I am very proud of them all. One of them is the Cyprus representative for the Eukanuba challenge. BIS: What do you consider your greatest achievement as a breeder? C.B.: Interesting – for me it is not directly the breeding but when I started out with Folly, I took a long time to find a suitable male that ticked all my boxes – part of the reason for this was that I am a great researcher into pedigrees etc. and there was no book with them all in so set about collating them into the British Greyhounds Champion 1946-1996 book, this was of course before the days of greyhound data sites. I have to say doing this, taught me a huge amount and gave me the opportunity to talk to other great breeders. Going back to the breeding aspect I would say that I am really happy when I see newcomers to the breed make up champions having had dogs from me – anyone who knows me will tell you I personally do not relish the actual showing of the dogs, much prefer to do the breeding! BIS: Which stud dogs/brood bitches (not of your breeding) you think have contributed the most to the breed’s development? C.B.: I can really only talk about the UK here. My personal belief is that it is a shame when a sire is used to excess although I can absolutely understand why this may happen when they are very beautiful hounds, but in the longer term it does limit the breeding gene pool. Whilst I understand you can breed from a greyBest in Show Magazine

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hound neuropathy carrier to a clear dog, I personally do not think we should be doing this when we have a chance to clear the breed of this recessive gene and therefore eliminate potential of having affected dogs. There have of course been some really influential dogs and bitches over the years as demonstrated by winning off spring, but space limits choices here I have chosen three from the very many that I could have and these are based not only on their off spring but the future generations too. Ch Shaunvalley Cavalier – a lovely blue brindle and white parti colour dog in his own right, owned and bred by Frank Brown- he won 8 CCs. By my reckoning he sired 7 UK champions from three different litters – Wenonah Goosander (breed record holder at the time with 29 CCs, Ch Shaunvalley Bombadier and Ch Shaunvalley Bossanova, Ch Solstrand Double Diamond, and three RP bred dogs, Ch Roweth Powes of Exhurst, Ch Reden Pryskwyth and Ch Rebukys Poth. The reason I have chosen this dog is due to the next generation high quality stock that was produced….. Ch Shaunvalley Bombadier sired Padneyhill Prince Charming, himself a very influential sire including two dogs on 20 CCs - Gaysyde White Christmas & Ch Ransley Fortune Seeker, Ch Harestreak Arrow of Ardencote also won a remarkable 15 CCs. Ch Solstrand Double Diamond sired seven champions to, so the lineage that comes down from Ch Shaunvalley Cavalier is very impressive. Hubbestad Midnight Dancer (a son of Ch Shalfleet Sea Dancer) was bred by the Pedersens and owned by Dagmar Kenis – he had a leg injury when young so was un-shown. He was used on Ch Singing the Blues at Solstrand and produced two UK champions Ch Solstrand Fine and Dandy (himself sire of 7 multi CC winning UK champions, including the former breed record holder, Ch Ballalyns Foggy at Mistweave), Ch Solstrand Fait Accompli (behind most of my champions) and Solstrand Follow the Blues who went to USA to Georgiana Muller and Lila Snow and had some beautiful offspring. Of course Barbara Hargreaves’ and Ian Savages’ Foggy was not only the breed record holder at the time, but sired Ch Boughton Benvoluto and their own Ch Mistweave Making Waves who is the cur200

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rent breed record holder. Lastly and by no mean least, the very lovely bitch, Ch Windspiel Northern Style who was a lovely unexaggerated bitch by the American import Am Ch Aroi Seahawk of Shalfleet. She had the distinction of being brood bitch of the year in 1993 all breeds. She had two litters, both to the same sire (Ch Gaysyde White Christmas) and produced six champions, Ch Gaysyde Christmas Carol, Ch Gaysyde Christmas Cracker, Ch Snow Queen of Windspiel, Ch Windspiel Special Style, Ch Windspeil Northern Snowman and a personal favourite of mine Ch Windspeil Northern Pearl at Seeswift. Elaine and Bob Newsham still continue to breed some lovely hounds coming down from this bitch line. BREED: BIS: If you can use just three words to describe the breed, which three would you use? C.B.: Curves, elegance and grace. BIS: Which of your homebred dogs have so far got the closest to this imprint in your head? C.B.: My favourite greyhound has to be Ch Boughton Bonheur ‘Gypsy’. I am of course a tad biased as she had such a sweet and clown like character, however Gypsy has the substance required whilst having balance, style and grace all intertwined. She was a powerful mover but still light of foot. BIS: Do you think there are any traits in the breed you fear are becoming exaggerated? C.B.: I personally do not like over exaggerated hind quarters with excessive bend of stifle – in my humble view these dogs are not fit for long term function. I also love to see good lay of shoulder with good return of arm – sadly I feel this is lacking in so many hounds which in turn results in stilted front action inhibiting what should be low reaching straight movement. BIS: Please name those Greyhounds, other than your own, who made the greatest impact on you, and tell us why you thought they were outstanding examples of the breed. C.B.: This is always difficult as I would limit this to dogs


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I have seen – pictures may cover a multitude of sins, likewise, very beautiful hounds may have poor pictures of them circulating! Shalfleet Sea Dancer – as I have previously said I saw this bitch as a young girl and thought to myself at the time, I want a dog like her – she had a blue jacket to die for and was so curvaceous without any exaggerations at all. On the day I saw her she did not win but I knew I loved her! Sobers Cadelia – This bitch is probably my all time winner – such a picture of grace with long neck set into well laid shoulders. There are some pictures of her holding her neck so beautifully, it makes your heart melt! Bitte was kind enough to give me and Maggie Holder a daughter of Cadelia (Sobers Hannah). Although we made Hannah into a UK champion including a CC at Crufts, it was always our plan to mate to my Ch Boughton Benvoluto – we did and had a beautiful litter with four of the five actively shown becoming UK champions and the other one won 2 CCs (so near yet so far!). I have not ventured much across the pond to USA so I guess there have been some lovely hounds there that I have never seen. Although I do recall a bitch called Arborcrest Persephone that caught my eye, again she had complete balance and poise. In order to do this article I have just looked up her breeding and seen that she is a granddaughter of Shalfleet Sea Dancer – I genuinely did not know that before today, I just recall having seen her grace and elegance. I am not sure if this one counts as she was sired by Ch Boughton Benvoluto (!), but I do feel Epic Clairvoyant warrants mention – she was such a fun girl and was beautiful from the moment she was born! She was so elegant, maintained her grace and femininity at all times, however she completely came to life on the move – seeing her flying around the ring with either Johan or Annalena was beautiful. I also really rated one of her sons, Epic Genuine, owned by Lene Tryggestad and bred by Epic Kennel. He was all male, full of curves, smart mover and always shown in top condition by his handler and owner BIS: What is your take on how Greyhounds have changed over the time since you first got involved 202

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with the breed? C.B.: My answer would be have they changed? Yes of course you get different breeders preferring a slightly different type, perhaps longer in length or lower on leg etc., but I feel on the whole they are still a fit for function dog. Just look at the pictures of the Carnlanga and Parcancady kennels from Cornwall in the 1930s – two very different types but both worked for their dinners. I would like to think shoulders have improved, with slightly more return of arm so elbows well under the body and improved infill in front to steady the movement. What I feel has deteriorated in some lines is the exaggerated rear angulation and poor toplines. I consider both of these aspects of a greyhound very important, after all the loin is the power engine to enable the coursing dog to twist and turn and have its double suspension gait, likewise over angulated hind quarters would be more liable to injury on the coursing field. COOWORKING BIS: Which breeders do you cooperate most with, and why? C.B.: This is a hard one to answer as I believe it is important to have good co-operation with all breeders to ensure the health in both mind and body of the greyhounds of the future. Of course I prefer certain lines, and therefore I would tend to co-operate with these kennels more, but there is an old saying, never throw the baby out with the bath water. I always look around, that is the beauty of living in Europe and being able to see so many beautiful hounds first hand. Of course, on a day to bay basis, I have to say that my good friends Maggie Holder (Mascotts) and Barbara Hargreaves (Mistweave) have always been so supportive and over the years I have worked well with them separately. Maggie has loved and looked after so well dogs I have bred, Ch Boughton Banchieri (Maggie’s care and devotion got this stunning bitch to 14.7 years) and Ch Boughton Blakeney and of course we have worked together to bring in Sobers Hannah and reared a beautiful litter together (although Maggie


did all the hard work!!). Likewise Barbara was so generous in letting me have Cassie, Ch/Am Ch Hyperion Summer in Paris at Mistweave ShCM at a time when I had nothing to campaign – this was indeed a beautiful bitch and is my soul dog, still going strong at 13 years. Cassie was top dog in the UK, not many people would share a dog of this caliber! Likewise I was given by Barbara Ch Mistweave My Brave Wallace, a lovely funny boy who is the father of my current litter. BIS: Which individuals of the sport have been your greatest inspiration and support, other than your own family? C.B.: Dagmar Kenis (Solstrand) clearly has been so much support over the years and is the fount of all greyhound (and Irish Wolfhound!) knowledge. She has been so generous in sharing both her knowledge and some of her treasured greyhound memorabilia items with me. Knut Blutecher (Showline) is another kind and supportive hound man – Although we rarely keep in contact, I feel I can always talk to Knut and get good honest, impartial and sound advice. When you meet up with him it is like you’ve never been away! Again Knut has a wonderful knowledge of all things greyhound! Knut has shown in the UK, making up two very elegant UK ‘Showline’ champions. POTENTIAL ISSUES BIS: Which is the most common problem in Greyhounds seen from a breeder’s point of view? C.B.: It is important to outcross at times, however I personally find it hard to find something that ticks all the boxes whilst being of a ‘type’ that I like.

Photo 4 • Ch. Shalfleet Sea Dancer Photo 5 • Ch. Sobers Cadelia

BIS: What has been the biggest disappointment in breeding and showing to you so far? C.B.: In the litter that produced Ch Boughton Benvoluto there was only one bitch, Boughton Bellissima – as I was campaigning Benvoluto I rarely showed Bellissima, which looking back was a mistake, however I was younger then with less money and a small car to go to shows in! However the biggest regret was never being able to get her into whelp. I Best in Show Magazine

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mated her several times, even travelling to Sweden with her once, but sadly no puppies. I have a dog at home, Boughton Beadsman, brother to Ch Boughton Blakeney and Ch Boughton Balanchine who I really rate however sadly he ruptured his cruciate ligament when young so never got to be shown. JUDGING THE BREED AND THE DOG SHOWS BIS: What would you like judges to focus most on when judging Greyhounds? C.B.: For me it has to be overall balance, i.e. no exaggerations, with one continuous flowing line. If this is all in place then of course movement will compliment the outline. I personally do not like people to get hung up on one part of a dog, it has to be the whole. I hear judges sometimes say I didn’t like the underline or eye colour for example, and yet because of this bias they missed the fact that the rest of that hound was beautiful. BIS: What are the most important characteristics to keep in mind for anyone wanting to become a good Sighthound judge? C.B.: Patience! Sight hounds are not known for their obedience so allow time to settle before going into assess them and when you do be gentle. Always remind yourself prior to judging about the functional aspect of the hound as well as refreshing your mind of the breed standard. No matter how many times you have judged a breed a refresher is always important. There are many articles written as to whether dogs today are fit for function and how can you assess this in the ring? My advice is that you can only consider those placed in front of you and not to compare those against those of yesteryear so it is your duty to judge against fit for function combined with the breed standard of the day. CONCLUSION BIS: What would be the most important single piece of advice you would give to all serious young breeders? C.B.: Follow your dreams whilst gaining all the infor204

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mation you can about a breed from the old breeders and history books. Look around you (not just the big winners of the day), go and visit the bigger kennels (although sadly these are lacking today)or any breeder for that matter and spend time in a relaxed area discussing the pros and cons. I know I would welcome anyone to my house that was keen to learn and I am sure all serious older breeders (!) would be too! I would say it is lovely to see a few new younger breeders coming forward, and some with some really nice hounds – there is room for everyone!


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Photo 1 • Sobers Ottilia, photo PILAR House

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Sobers Greyhounds by Bitte Ahrens Primavera Interviewed by Mihaela Kosic

BIS: Sobers is celebrating 60 years in Greyhounds (and Italian Sighthounds) in 2017, founded by your grandmother in Sweden. Which bloodlines did she lay her foundation on and what significance did her homebred Greyhounds have on the breed in Scandinavia/worldwide? B.A.P.: Well, it’s an “antique” story… My grandmother, the late Mrs Astrid Jonsson - started successfully breeding Italian Sighthounds and Greyhounds 1957 – the foundation for Greyhounds was the bitch “Black Beauty”: she was (obviously) black and had no kennel name but was bred in Sweden going back to some old English Greyhound lines. Astrid’s first litter was sired by Ch Treetops Buzzard, a son of the famous Ch Treetop’s Hawk, bred in England by Mrs. Judy De Casembroot, the very famous Lady of the Treetops Kennel. Ch Treetops HAWK has worldwide been considered as “the father of the modern Greyhound”. About the impact of SOBERS breedings. In the early days we for sure can see several dogs behind in important pedigrees and kennels worldwide and the bloodlines are still continued and preserved in our own SOBERS lines today. We think we now have got very close to settle a “Sobers Type” which

is quite recognizable by most of dog people, BUT we are still always working on it, because the ideal Greyhound which is in our mind and in our heart will probably never be bred. Sometimes, as some wise person said, the path is more important than the arrival point and the pursue is more exciting than the target… BIS: How are the present Sobers Greyhounds connected to those of the early days? B.A.P.: They are straight descendants of those ones, just many (around 15) generations after and with some necessary insertions of new blood. The Greyhound’s gene pool is quite restricted and it becomes mandatory to use (good) new blood every now and then. Breeding only from your own pack is a utopia always generating health and character problems, in the long run. That’s why, sooner or later, every breeder has to deal with this and must understand that dreaming of pedigrees filled up only with his own dogs does not make a good service for the breed and the breeder’s own bloodline. BIS: What is it about the breed that made you fall in love with them, other than Mrs Jonsson’s heritage

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of passion for Greyhounds? B.A.P.: Many reasons, all together. Their overall beauty, incomparable class and unreachable distinction. It’s the breed which inspires - to people who can understand, of course - a perfect mix of power and elegance, strength and grace, athleticism and balance. And much more, such as their amazing humor… BIS: What is your breeding philosophy? How many litters do you breed per year on average and what long-term goal do you continue to aim for? B.A.P.: We usually don’t breed more than one or two litters per year. The long term goal is what I mentioned above, but – luckily - it’s an unreachable goal, as I said. BIS: Sobers represents a significant part of the breed’s gene pool - please highlight which of your homebreds have contributed the most to the breed’s development as studs/brood bitches. B.A.P.: There are many. Starting from the early days, Sobers foundation bitch was, as mentioned earlier, Ch BLACK BEAUTY (Ch Jidji’s Gallant x Ch Lady Loo) who was bred twice to Ch Treetops Buzzard, himself a son of the famous Ch Treetops Hawk, and with him produced the strong blue bitch Int Ch SOBERS BLUE ISIS who became the legendary dam of the K, L and M litters, all sired by another Ch Treetops Hawk son, the blue Int Ch Treetops Queens Beast. Out of these litters came many Champions and top winners and they made SOBERS famous for its homogenous solid blue breeders groups (this was in the early 60’s). In Blue Isis last litter came the lovely blue bitch , Ch Sobers MIRELL (exp Denmark) whose daughter BLUE GHOST BELPHEGORE was exported to Mrs Judy Donaldson of the well known KINGSMARK Greyhounds in the USA and is behind in most of those pedigrees. My grandmother was very keen on line breeding, so, being satisfied with the result of the HAWK sons, she decided to introduce a third Hawk son namely, Int Ch Treetops Rising Pheasant who was bred to Nord Ch Sobers Kame’. From this litter the black Nord AM Ch Sobers NOVA of Solstrand was exported in whelp (sire was Int Ch Sobers Lakey) to Dagmar Kenis (later Pordham) in the USA, and Nova became the founda208

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Photo 2 • Bitte Ahrens Primavera with BIS SBIS EUW Int Ch Epic Beautiful at Sobers, Ch Sobers Glorienne, SBIS Ch Sobers Era, BIS Int Ch EUW Skyings eagle Eyed Eila and BIS SBIS EUW Int Multi Ch Sobers Galathea at Grandcru Photo 3 • The late Mrs Astrid Jonsson and granddaughter Bitte Ahrens Primavera back in 1989 with a group of 6 Italian Sighthound Champions and the red English imported Greyhound Mult.BIS SBIS Int Mult. Ch TRECARNE AMBER OF SOLTRAND Photo 4 • Sobers Marigold and Int Multi Ch Sobers Krista (photo Jan Buk)


Int Nord Ch GULD. Guld became the foundation of Mrs Ann Gustafsson’s famous GULD kennel in Sweden, whose bloodlines are today behind most European Greyhound pedigrees but also behind several pedigrees in the US as well. Mrs Astrid Jonsson stopped breeding Greyhounds due to illness in 1971 and no Greyhound litters was bred at Sobers until 1993 again. This time my grandmother and I decided to breed the litters together, and we restarted with a lovely red bitch imported from Mrs Dagmar (Kenis) Pordham, UK . This was Multi BIS SBIS INT SE NO Ch Trecarne AMBER of Solstrand and in her pedigree we had Ch Sobers Nova of Solstrand in the 6th generation so “the circle” was so to say “closed” and we could continue on the same bloodlines as before! In this litter were born 5 red Champions: all of them were used in breeding here at Sobers or by others and of course are behind in many of the modern Greyhound pedigrees all around the world. We also imported the bluefawn Ch Solstrand Déjà Vu D’Sobers and the bluebrindle Int Ch Scottwil Aquamarine Dream from England and both also contributed to a new “era” for SOBERS. In 2001, I and the SOBERS kennel moved to Italy and I continue to breed Greyhounds (as well as Whippets, IG’s and Bracco Italiano) with my husband Pierluigi Primavera.

Photo 5 • Ch. Black-Beauty Photo 6 • BIS SBIS INT MULTI Ch Trecarne Amber of Solstrand

tion bitch of the famous SOLSTRAND kennel (later the Solstrand kennel moved to the UK). In Sweden my grandmother kept the red Nova sister, Sobers NUGGET who was leased to Mr Bo Bengtsson (of the famous Bohem Whippets) and Dr Göran Bodegård. They bred Sobers Nugget to Ch Whispering, who in that litter produced the world famous

BIS: On what basis do you select your breeding stock? What requirements do studs/brood bitches have to meet before including them in your breeding program? B.A.P.: First of all, Health and Character. Then, Type. Not necessarily our dogs relatives, but of course we look for dogs which hopefully can add positive traits into our breeding program while hopefully keeping our type and the qualities we have. It is always a great risk to introduce new bloodlines and normally we do prefer to line breed. Most important, whatever is the breeding method you choose to use, it is to evaluate your breeding result critically. Even if it would be possible to put Champion titles on a dog, with the “right shows, right handlers and right judges”, it does not make it any more valuable from a breeding point of view. You, as a breeder, are alone, the one and only responsible for the breedBest in Show Magazine

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ing result you get: show results and titles have normally nothing, or very little to do with QUALITY. BIS: What do you consider your greatest achievement as a breeder? B.A.P.: The work done during the last 60 years and having the possibility of hopefully going on breeding generation after generation, together with many other passionate breeders and owners, for the GOOD of this magnificent breed: THIS is and will always be our greatest achievement! Instead, although we have been very pleased with our show results, we DO NOT think that our greatest achievements are our number of All-breed and Specialty Best in Show, of individual Champions, of Champion Titles, of World or European Winners, of Best of Breed wins at CRUFTS or Westminster…. Having said this, we are also blessed with two lovely children Emma & Livio, who have such great passion and love for all dogs and already are helping out with both puppies and handling at shows, so, who knows, perhaps one day they might want to continue …. BIS: Could you please name those stud dogs a and brood bitches (of other breeding than your own) who you think have had / had an important impact on the breed? B.A.P.: In the early days (50’s,60’s and 70’s) I would mention from England the legendary Ch Treetops Hawk and his sons Ch Treetops Queens Beast and Ch Treetops Rising Pheasant. Ch Shaunvalley Cavalier and not to forget Ch Shalfleet Sir Lancelot who sired Ch Champion offspring for several kennels ( Bohem, Solstrand, RP, Shalfleet and Shaunvalley ). In USA the stylish Ch Parcancady Royaltan (also a Ch Treetop Hawk son), Ch Argus of Greywitch (a son of AM Ch Sobers Orphi) and several of Georgiana Muller’s lovely AROI dogs and also the late Pat Ide’s elegant HUZZAH dogs. In Scandinavia I would of course mention the red broodbitch Int Nord Ch GULD (Ch Whispering – Sobers Nugget) whose influence on the breed can be seen in almost all modern pedigrees, especially in north Europe but also in both UK and USA. I could mention several dogs from the top kennels that all have done good for the breed but choose to instead mention some kennels 210

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that during the modern history of our breed made a distinct mark and that must be the so well known JET’s, founded by the unforgettable Kari Engh and currently (and brilliantly) run by Espen Engh and Aage Gjetnes (Norway), Annalena Almgren and Johan Rosengren’s EPIC dogs in Sweden, FIONN CLANN of Katya Arkipova (Russia) and ESTET CLASSIC of Olga Gorbatjova (Estonia).

Photo 7 • The redbrindle Multi BIS SBIS EUW’15’16 Int Multi Ch SOBERS GALATHEA GRANDCRU (BOB winner - CRUFTS 2005 and WESTMINSTER 2009) Photo 8 • The red Int Multi Ch WW EUW (BOB CRUFTS 2014) SOBERS ORIANNE


BIS: Could you please name those stud dogs a and brood bitches (of other breeding than your own) who you think have had / had an important impact on the breed? B.A.P.: In the early days (50’s,60’s and 70’s) I would mention from England the legendary Ch Treetops Hawk and his sons Ch Treetops Queens Beast and Ch Treetops Rising Pheasant. Ch Shaunvalley Cavalier and not to forget Ch Shalfleet Sir Lancelot who sired Ch Champion offspring for several kennels ( Bohem, Solstrand, RP, Shalfleet and Shaunvalley ). In USA the stylish Ch Parcancady Royaltan (also a Ch Treetop Hawk son), Ch Argus of Greywitch (a son of AM Ch Sobers Orphi) and several of Georgiana Muller’s lovely AROI dogs and also the late Pat Ide’s elegant HUZZAH dogs. In Scandinavia I would of course mention the red broodbitch Int Nord Ch GULD (Ch Whispering – Sobers Nugget) whose influence on the breed can be seen in almost all modern pedigrees, especially in north Europe but also in both UK and USA. I could mention several dogs from the top kennels that all have done good for the breed but choose to instead mention some kennels that during the modern history of our breed made a distinct mark and that must be the so well known JET’s, founded by the unforgettable Kari Engh and currently (and brilliantly) run by Espen Engh and Aage Gjetnes (Norway), Annalena Almgren and Johan Rosengren’s EPIC dogs in Sweden, FIONN CLANN of Katya Arkipova (Russia) and ESTET CLASSIC of Olga Gorbatjova (Estonia). BIS. If you can use just three words to describe the GREYHOUND breed, which three would you use? B.A.P.: Greyhound - Athletic, powerful and elegant. Photo 9 • IT Ch SOBERS ACHILLEA KARKATI - BOB CRUFTS 2017, photo by Anna Szabo Photo 10 • WW’08 INT MULTI CH SOBERS HAMILTON BOB CRUFTS 2008

BIS: What traits should breeders focus on in order to produce quality Greyhounds? B.A.P.: As I said, Health and Character as first. The breed is generally healthy but, as all other breeds, there are issues that we have to work with. The Greyhound must be gentle and kind. Then, classic Type, including some of the appreciable traits of the breed: athletic and strong but still with a lot of elegance, generous and balanced angulations, harmonious and curvy outlines, effortless and sound Best in Show Magazine

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Photo 11 • Int Ch SOBERS OPERA OMNIA at KARKATI (Top Greyhound in Italy 2015)

movement, with good reach in front and effective drive in the rear. All in all, possibly featuring a correctly shaped long neck, i.e. like an Arab horse and not like a camel. Size does not matter that much, as long as the dog is harmonious and well moving. On the other hand, the slightly smaller dogs tend to be more functional for their purpose than the oversized ones. Beautiful heads and darker eyes are pleasant and welcome but less important than a beautiful body, thinking about the purpose and the function of this exceptional breed. They must never be exaggerated on the points which concern their health and function . Good well shaped feet with correct pasterns are also worth to be mentioned since they otherwise very easily get injured while running. Short and hard knuckled feet and stiff pastern were a quite big problem, especially in some Scandinavian lines, but they seem to have improved nowadays.

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BIS: Do you think there are any traits in the breed you fear are becoming exaggerated? B.A.P.: The secret of Beauty is in the balance. There is no beauty without balance. Even the standard says that any exaggeration is to be considered wrong. This does not mean that the Greyhound should be moderate and boring. The standard calls for an upstanding dog with “generous proportions�: long neck, long legs, deep chest, long body. The breeders must work for that, combining balance and generosity together with sound effective movement. The movement must not be extreme, since this is not a dog made for trotting (bred to gallop in high speed) but its side gait must be low reaching, elastic and with good reach in front and correct drive from the rear. The Greyhound must move with effortless easy gait, carrying its head slightly lower and forward on the move. I do think we can find several dogs in Europe and elsewhere today that are good representatives of the breed BUT not so many with really good movement.


BIS: Please mention 2 to 3 Greyhounds/Whippets which are not owned, bred or shown by yourself, that you particularly admired, and tell us what you most admired about each. B.A.P.: For Greyhounds I could mention several but choose these three bitches from the past since they represent (for me) a wonderful classic breed TYPE. Ch Singing The Blues at Solstrand was a bluebrindle medium sized bitch with lovely balanced outline and the very best effortless elastic side gait. Ch Kingsmark Bravura, I only admired from photos but she represents such a lovely generous type combining nicely strength and elegance. Ch Aroi Talk of the Blues – a favorite when it comes to type and outline, both standing and moving. In Whippets: Ch Adagio Love Supreme (Sweden) for his true Whippet breed type, classic outline and wonderful movement, even kept up in old age. Ch Sportingfields Jazz Fest (USA) – correct size with lovely flowing lines without being exaggerated anywhere. Stunning mover with effortless easy side gait. Ch Nut Chip of Nevedith (UK) – lovely type, moderate but with correct outline and with sound, easy and true movement. I have to mention yet one more dog that impressed me with optimal size, type and gait: Ch Peperone New Sensation (Australia).

Photo 12 • BIS SBIS WW EUW INT MULTI CH FIONN CLANN PARAMOUNT AT SOBERS

Photo 13 • BIS SBIS Int Multi Ch Sobers Cadelia Photo 14 • BIS SBIS Int Multi Ch Sobers Galathea Grandcru, 8 months of age

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BIS: With how many kennels and who are the Kennels you co-breed? How important was cooperation between breeders through the time? B.A.P.: In Greyhounds we have been cooperating (not co-bred) with few kennels during the past and the present… For sure our most important partnership has been with the worldwide renowned kennel Solstrand. We personally owe a lot to Mrs. Dagmar Kenis Pordham. She started with one of our breeding, Ch Sobers Nova of Solstrand, in the 60’s. And she generously allowed us to restart our breeding in 1993 by giving us three bitches which have been enormously important for our breeding stock: Ch Trecarne Amber of Solstrand, Ch Solstrand Déjà vu D’Sober and Ch Scottwill Acquamarine Dream. Thanks to these wonderful specimen, we could start over without interruption a work after 6 generations in a straight line: amazing, thank you Dagmar! In the last years, another breeder we have been working together with both for Greyhounds and Whippet is Mr Knut Blutecher, of the famous Showline kennel in Norway. He gave us one of the most influential studs in the Greyhound breed in the last 15 years: “Giacomo”, aka Ch Showline Sporting Trophy at Sobers. Of course, we must mention Mrs Inger Johansson of Kennel Skyings (Inger’s first Greyhound was Ch Sobers Polaris!), who gave us the unforgettable BIS EUW Int Ch. Skyings Eagle Eyed Eila at Sobers; Mrs. Annalena Almgren and Mr Johan Rosengren of kennel EPIC (who got Ch Sobers Voyante and Ch Sobers Bartsia from us). They gave us the two wonderful littermates: Int Ch Epic Brave at Sobers and BIS SBIS Int Ch Epic Beautiful at Sobers sired by Ch Jet’s As You Like It out of Ch Sobers Bartsia. And again, Mrs Katya Arkhipova and Mrs Maria Sheina “FIONN CLANN” greyhounds in Russia for our beloved topwinning Multi BIS SBIS Int Ch Fionn Clann Paramount at Sobers. We also successfully “exchanged” dogs with Olga Gorbatjova, of ESTET-CLASSIC fame in Estonia and got Ch Estet Classic Self Made at Sobers . Lately, we are cooperating with Ina Koulermou , INA’S FASHION kennel from Germany by co-owning a young beautiful male, already winning a Specialty BIS and used as a stud and also with Mr Roberto Posa, KARKATI (Switzerland/Sweden). Last but not least, of course, we have been cooperating with 214

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Photo 15 • GB Ch Singing The Blues at Solstrand (very young)

our famous friends Espen Engh and Aage Gjetnes of kennel JET’S: our beloved “Barney” (Int Multi Ch Epic Brave at Sobers) was sired by Ch Jet’s As You Like It and for some of their litters they used in the past our Ch Sobers Tarquin and more recently Ch Showline Sporting Trophy at Sobers and Int Multi Ch Sobers Vagabond at Decuma, owned by our friend Pavlina Nowacki (DECUMA) from Germany and crowned Best of Breed at Crufts 2016 by Mr Espen Engh. Well, for sure there has been a great cooperation between Greyhound breeders and I think that this is very positive for the future of the breed. The ones who think they can do it all alone, will one day hit the wall. On the other side, I still do believe that although as positive it is with cooperation, it is ALSO important not to get lost and end up loosing your own type and “family print” on the way… It is a fine balance and sometimes we do mistakes and have to go back a few steps to be able to recover again. That’s why breeding is not about just producing Champions. It is instead a long term commitment and hours of hard brain work behind reaching great results generation after generation . In Whippets, we had the privilege of basing our breeding program mainly on some important bloodlines: Kennel Sportingfield in USA (Mrs Debbie Butt and Mrs Amanda Giles), Kennel Barnesmore from Ireland (Miss Lucinda and Felicity Thompson), Kennel Adagio from Sweden (Mr Stefan Raghammar) and Kennel Aaniston also from Sweden (Mrs Mia Winroth).


Photo 16 • Int Ch EPIC BRAVE AT SOBERS ( Int Ch Jet’s As You Like It - Int Ch Sobers Bartsia)

Currently, we are cooperating with our friends Mrs Joanne Boudreault of the well known Kennel Forgetmenot in Canada and Mrs Valeria Baldini/Mr Lucio Giovagnoli of Kennel Giobaldi in Italy. BIS: Who has been your biggest inspiration and support? Did you have mentors and how important was mentoring through the time being a breeder? B.A.P.: My biggest inspiration has been my grandmother Astrid Jonsson who really had so called “green fingers” when it came to dog breeding and is the one who gave me the very best start. I also owe a lot to many people… Mrs Dagmar Kenis Pordham of the famous SOLSTRAND hounds always so unselfishly shared all her great knowledge and I was so fortune to spend several summers with her in England. Dr Goran Bodegard in Sweden, whose spiritual and critical words taught me a lot both as a breeder and as a judge, and for inspiration I would say that in Greyhounds the great breeders like Pat Ide (Huzzah), Georgiana Muller (Aroi), Judith Donaldson (Kingsmark), Judy de Casembroot (Treetops) and Barbara Odell (Shalfleet): for sure they have been people whose work impressed me and their dogs as a matter of fact had a great influence in my own breeding program.

Photo 17 • Our Group winning Whippet US imp Ch Sportingfields Primrose at Sobers Photo 18 • BIS SBIS WW’14 Int Multi Ch SOBERS MIMOSA ( BIS Int Ch Barnesmore Galileo imp IRL – IT Ch Sportingfields Primrose at Sobers)

BIS: How did Greyhounds change over time since you first got involved with the breed? B.A.P.: The “Classic Type”, easy to recognize in any show ring, has remained the same over the years in the Greyhound breed although we, time to time, do see, some extremes in different directions. Greyhounds which are either “over typed” with too much of everything and somehow loose their function and soundness, or in the other direction, the ones that just are too “doggy like” without the lovely smooth Best in Show Magazine

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S-curves. Very often we hear that “the breed was much better before” but to be absolutely honest, I don’t think that this statement is true. There have always been variations in types and of course some things could be better but many things are also clearly better today than before. Dogs today are usually more generous over all and more sound. In the old days there were many more straight narrow fronts with poor front movement as a result, bad neck sets, uncorrect short breast bones, flat chests without any spring of ribs, short coupled dogs with overdone toplines and steep croups. Many dogs had bad hard knuckled small cat feet . There were of course some really lovely ones too, but saying that everything was great before is fooling ourselves. Today I think the breed is in a quite good state but one must never stop being critical! BIS: Is there something which you would like to change/improve in the breed in general? B.A.P.: Looking at the current status of the breed and judging around, I would say that many fronts could be improved. Many Greyhounds are lacking that necessary angle in the shoulder which is even more important than the angle in the upper arm. Therefore, many of them cannot perform that effortless long easy side gait which is one of the absolutely required points of the breed. It surprise me often that many owners and breeders have hard to understand what we exactly mean with a correct laid back shoulder. On the other hand, body construction and movement, in any living creature (including mankind) are strictly connected. Improving other points through breeding, such as heads, rear angulations, neck length or color of the eyes is not too difficult: improving fronts is more problematic and, once achieved, must be jealously kept. BIS: What is your take on the racing Greyhound issue? B.A.P.: I am totally against all the dog racing business. It’s a scandal and shame that it is allowed in 2017!!! The business with racing Greyhounds being exported to China and other places is unforgivable. With this I want to make clear, I do not mind the private people that keep their dogs as beloved pets in the family and then in the weekend go to let their

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dog run at a coursing field or a racetrack. I think honestly the world is getting more and more crazy and the lack of empathy and common sense is indeed scary and it seems that animal abuse, like the Greyhound racing industry, is always excused as long as money is involved. BIS: Every breed has some common problems. Which is the most common problem in your variety seen from a breeder’s point of view? B.A.P.: I think that we all, as breeders, should be a bit more concerned about some health issues and also about characters. Greyhounds must be gentle and kind but still have that spirit and humor so special for the breed. When it comes to type and details, I feel the breed (compare to many others) is in quite good hands and the future looks quite bright but we of course have to think about the gene pool which is very narrow. BIS: What has been the biggest disappointment in breeding and showing for you so far? B.A.P.: In breeding we feel that it is very disappointing to give really nice dogs and all your support to people who promise a lot, and then don’t make any effort to keep up their promises. Breeding quality dogs takes a lot of time and effort and nothing makes you more sad and frustrated than seeing really lovely promising specimen get “wasted” by people who do not have the right passion for the breed and love for their dogs. About the shows, we had such enormous success over the years that we really cannot complain. Nevertheless what disappoints us a lot, sometimes, is to have our dogs judged by arrogant people who are not seriously interested in our breed and have poor knowledge about the standard. Also, a thing making us angry and sad is to see how some exhibitors keep and treat their dogs during travels and at the shows. If you want happy dogs, you must treat them like “kings & queens” while waiting to enter the ring. Don’t leave them for hours alone in their crates but instead try to keep your dogs as “pampered” as possible during the show day. THAT is your WORK as an exhibitor and handler!


Photo 19 • SBIS Ch Sobers Era & BIS SBIS EUW Int Multi Ch Epic Beautiful at Sobers

BIS: What do you think is the most problematic about Greyhound FCI or AKC Standard? B.A.P.: FCI standard is quite complete. AKC standard leaves some things for “imagination”, for example the movement: there is no description at all! BIS: What is the most important point of which you would like a judge of your breed to be aware? B.A.P.: These are athletic dogs and need to be able to move (gallop and trot) with strength and power. Never accept poor movement. Remember that a Greyhound must be upstanding with a generous outline. They must not be short coupled or cobby! Also learn how they grow and develop: a 10 months old Greyhound cannot/should not look like a 4 year old Champion! Greyhounds mature slowly and do not have their full potential until the age of 3-4 years. BIS: What are the most important characteristics to keep in mind for anyone wanting to become a good Sighthound judge? B.A.P.: Meet the breeds in their home environment , see them run in the field , visit breeders and touch as many dogs as you can. Look at puppies, youngsters and old dogs to better understand how the specific breeds mature and grow old. Learn about

the way people feed, exercise and groom their dogs and why. Be honest to yourself and others – do not become a judge on a breed you do not like or have very little interest for. Visit breed specialties and try to do judge training under real Sighthound specialists ! Also visit lure coursings or see the dogs just running free in the field to be able to understand WHY certain things are so important and mentioned in the breed standards. BIS: What would be the most important single piece of advice you would give to all serious young breeders? B.A.P.: A good advice, before thinking about breeding, is to get a few really good mentors in and even outside your own breed. Learn and listen to people who actually have gained great results in the breed and have many years of experience. Don’t get impressed by glamorous ads and bragging on FB or other social networks. Don’t choose your breeding material on internet but instead go and see dogs and their relatives in FLESH! Smart breeders TALK to each other, DISCUSS problems and try to HELP when needed! Be patient – breeding successfully takes a lot of time and you must always be your own worst critical and demanding judge! Best in Show Magazine

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THE SWEDISH SIGHTHOUND SUMMER SHOW Most people in dogs have heard of “Skokloster,” but what’s perhaps not generally known is that Skokloster is actually a castle not far from Stockholm. For many the word has become shorthand for a large and very international Sighthounds show that somehow has managed to retain that name even after it moved away from the original location. Anna Szabó asked if I could write a little about the history of the show. I’m happy to do that, even though my memory of the first years is getting a little vague — it all began a long time ago! In the early 1970s, when I was still living in Sweden, I was very involved in the Sighthound Club there and felt that although we hosted several nice club shows, what was really missing was an annual flagship show: held in a beautiful location, highlighting the short but lovely Swedish summer and featuring international Sighthound specialist judges. That simple premise proved extremely successful. The first Swedish Sighthound summer show in 1970 attracted just a little more than 100 entries, but by 1975, when the show was held at Skokloster for the first time, there were 364 entries, easily a record for those days. Since then numbers have climbed considerably; I don’t have details for every year, but by the 10-year anniversary in 1986 there were already more than 900 Sighthounds entered, and in 2008, when the FCI World Show was held in Stockholm only a week before the Sighthound show, there was what may well have been an all-time record of 973 dogs entered. By that time, of course, the “Skokloster” name was only honorary; in the early 2000s the caretakers at the castle had begun to make things difficult for the dog people. It was time to move, and since then a number of different locations have hosted the Sighthound show, always in central Sweden, not too far from the capital and with varying success. The present location, Strömsholm, is perhaps the closest thing to Skokloster that can be found, and in many ways it’s even better than that. The surroundings are at least as beautiful, there is a Baroque castle that provides a suitably impressive background, and it doesn’t hurt that Strömsholm is also known for horse breeding; there is nothing 220

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like a few thoroughbreds grazing nearby to lend an air of distinction to a dog show … Although I doubt many of the exhibitors know it, Strömshold in fact also marks a return to where the show was once held — in 1974, before most of today’s exhibitors (and none of the dogs!) were even born … (I remember that show very well; Frank Sabella made his first visit to Sweden, and his American travel companion Beatrice Godsol, who had judged BIS at Westminster in 1957, came out of retirement especially to judge BIS for us. She awarded the top spot to the young Afghan Hound bitch Ch. El Khyrias Iquilah.) A couple of other features of the Swedish Sighthound Summer show must be mentioned. There are two days of judging, with half the entry on Saturday and the other half on Sunday. Since many of the Sighthound breed clubs hold their specialty shows on the same grounds on alternate days, there are two shows over the weekend for most — if not all — breeds. Salukis and Whippets in particular get huge entries, easily more than 200250 of each in a good year, often even more than at the Sighthound show. Another feature of course is the presence of international specialist judges. The list of judges most years reads like a Who’s Who of world-class Sighthound experts. I doubt there are many experienced Sighthound judges anywhere in the world who have not been to Skokloster at some point; many of them have been judging there several times. It is easy to forget now that in the past it was rare to have judges from further away than the neighboring countries, and it was even more unusual, if not practically impossible, for exhibitors to bring their dogs to foreign shows. In 1975 we noted with pleasure that there were “foreign” dogs at the show — 33 of them, all from either Finland or Norway. Going through last year’s catalog I found more than a hundred foreign-owned dogs from nine different countries, including Russia, Lithuania, USA and Australia — all of which would have been unthinkable (for different reasons) in 1975. Skokloster — shall we be able to start calling the show by its real name, Strömsholm, soon? — has had counterparts in many other countries. In America we had the so-called Western Sighthound Combined Specialties, which were always held during the same weekend as Skokloster, necessitat-


JAPEJUKAN AZ’AJMAN Azawak

FILOMEIDES MUADHNAIT Irish Wolfhound

Breeder: Kahelin Jari-Pekka, Finland Owner: Jussi Lindholm, Jari-Pekka Kahelin, Finland

Breeder: Ahola Kaija, Finland Owner: Ahola Kaija, Finland

MANDINAH KINGDOM OF HEAVEN Afghan Hound

KARKATI TIGEREYE Greyhound

Breeder: Gustafsson Christina, Finland Owner: Sini Gardemeister, Finland

Breeder: Floesser Peter & Posa Roberto, Finland Owner: Floesser Peter & Posa Roberto, Finland

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ing a difficult choice about where to go for some of us … The WSCS started in 1980 and reached a peak in the late 1980s/early 1990s with close to 1,000 dogs entered, but in recent years most of the participating breed clubs have gone elsewhere. The 2017 event consisted of only Greyhounds, Irish Wolfhounds and Salukis — and next year the Greyhounds leave. There used to be a big Sighthound show in Australia; I remember judging more than 500 dogs there for three days in 1993 — but not much has been heard about it in recent years. In Europe, of course, the Sighthound shows have a long tradition. The greatest rival to Skokloster/Strömsholm today is no doubt the beautiful Donaueschingen event in Germany in August; they had 1,440 entries at their show last year, which of course was the combined entries from TWO Sighthound shows, one with 784 dogs on the first day and 656 on the second. The Sighthound show at at Padenghe in northern Italy is also fast becoming a classic, as is the one in Grafenegg in Austria … and there is also the FCI European Sighthound show that’s held in a different country each year, in Slovakia in 2017. - BO BENGTSON ‘SKOKLOSTER’ STRÖMSHOLM 2017 IMPRESSIONS With a most picturesque showground and distinguished history, ‘Skokloster’s successor, the Strömsholm Sighthound Specialty is making headlines for all the right reasons. Luckily, we were blessed with immaculate sunshine throughout the weekend, even if with an intense but rather quick storm passing through on Friday. This year, the judging panel featured leading Sighthound authorities, as usual, Espen Engh from Norway, Vlastislav Vojtek from Slovakia, Patsy Gilmour and John Walton Haddon from the United Kingdom, Molly Rule Steele from Australia, Emma North-Row of from Ireland, Stefano Corvi from Italy and Tomasz Borkowski from Poland. Consequently, the show drew an impressive entry of 600 exhibits (combined entries with the National Specialties exceeded a 1000), bringing 222

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Photo 4 • Ch. Shalfleet Sea Dancer Photo 5 • Ch. Sobers Cadelia

together the finest of Scandinavian Sighthounds. The depth of quality in most breeds was just outstanding. There is a defining moment in every star dog’s career, when those involved realize that nothing will ever be the same. For the 9 months old Azawakh male, Japejukan Az’Ajman and his breeder-owners Jussi Lindholm and Jari Pekka Kahelin from Finland this moment came by when they went Best in Show at Strömsholm this year… The judge, Wilfride Schwerm-Hahne from Germany was faced with a BIS line-up most judges can only dream of ever judging even once in a lifetime. This young redhead marched into the finalé, barely freshened up from his Junior Best in Show win under Emma North-Row from Ireland, “bringing the egzotic scent of the desert wind with him into the main ring” - said a ringside spectator behind me whose identity I never managed to figure out, and just claimed it all. To my knowledge, he is the first ever Azawakh to win Best in Show at ‘Skokloster’. His parents are both from Francesca Zampini’s Azamour kennel in Italy: a house of legends, who, over the years, put the breed on the map of the dog show world, always piloted by the kennel’s frontman, Patrizio Palliani from Italy. Best in Show-2 was the Irish Wolfhound bitch, Int. Fin.Swe.Nor.Dk.Est.Lit.Lat.Balt.Rus.Ch. Filomeides Muadhnait, bred and owned by Kaija Ahola in Finland and beautifully handled by Kaija’s daughter,


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in Finland. ‘Linus’ won BOS and Best Movement in Show the day before at the Swedish Afghan Hound National under Espen Engh from Norway. And last but not least, 4th Best in Show was the Greyhound bitch, BIS SBIS Ch. Karkati’s Tigereye, bred and owned by Roberto Posa in Sweden. Best in Show Baby under Molly Rule Steele of Taejeen from Australia was the Deerhound male, Grayrory’s Irresistible (Int.D.Swe.Dk.Fin.Ch. Grayrory’s Fabulous x Grayrory’s Grange), owned by Åke and Maria Käck in Sweden. Best Puppy in Show under Vlastislav Vojtek of Gandamak from Slovakia was the Whippet bitch, Wolf Tone Alice (Fin.Swe.Nor.Ch. Wolf Tone Viking x Sobresalto Rosina N‘Wolftone), bred and owned by Elisabet and Leif Janzon in Sweden. Best Veteran in Show under Wilfride SchwermHahne from Germany was the Afghan Hound male, SBIS Int.Nor.Swe.Fin.Dk.Slo.H.Am.Nord.Ch. Khaos D’Aram (Swe.Fin.Dk.Ch. Jangel’s Cadiblack x Swe. Ch. Khaos Tomorrow Never Dies), bred and owned by Saori Wohlin and the late Christina Roseen. WHIPPETS IN FOCUS

Photo 1 • Ch. Husniya Har Kala Rachi, BOB at Strömsholm on the ‘Skokloster’ day, owned by Cathrin Nilsson Photo 2 • Best of Breed Whippet & Best Opposite Photo 3 • Best Bitch Whippet and Reserve Best Bitch

Sara. She was sent through from the breed by Espen Engh from Norway. She won the FCI Reserve World Winner title in Moscow last year and is a multiple Group Winner at International All-Breed show level in Scandinavia. Best in Show-3 was the Afghan Hound Male, Swe. Fin.Ch. Mandinah Kingdom of Heaven, bred by Christina Gustafsson in Sweden and owned by Sini Gardemeister and handled by Tuuli Koivumäki 224

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Whippets were just the sight for sore eyes at the ‘Skokloster’ summer show, with Friday devoted principally to the male judging of the Swedish Whippet National, which saw altogether 144 entries under Mr Vlastislav Vojtek of Gandamak Afghan Hounds from Slovakia (I gather the only ever non Whippet breeder to ever have judged this show), Bitches and BIS judged on the Saturday and the 158 exhibits of the ‘Skokloster’ day judged by Mrs Patsy Gilmour of Courthill from the UK and Emma North-Row from Ireland on Sunday. With the vast majority of quality Whippets to be found in Sweden present throughout the weekend, and with quite some overseas support, the shows certainly gladdened the hearts of ringside spectators. Mr Vojtek’s choice as Best Male, and eventually Best in Show on the Saturday, went to the iconic SBIS Int.Swe.Nor.Fin.Dan.Nord.Ch.Twyborn Big Ben, bred by Michael Vikström and owned by Janet and Jörgen Oinonen in Sweden, and handled by Jörgen. ‘Kenzo’ is truly a king of the breed, having dominated the ring for several years in Scandinavia now. He was Sweden’s Top Whippet in 2012, Top stud in 2011’14’15 & ’16 and Top winning male in 2010’13 &


‘15. So far, he has 36 Best of Breed wins on his account, 41 Best of Opposites and numerous Group wins as well as Specialty Best in Shows at Scandinavia’s major all-breed and specialty shows. His owners consider his remarkable Group win at the Norwegian Winner Show in Lillestrom in 2012, his breed and Group win at the Norrköping International in Sweden and his Best in Show win at the Swedish Whippet National this year his most remarkable achievements, former two under breed authorities Espen Engh from Norway and Bo Bengtson from the US (born in Sweden, though) respectively. He was also Veteran Best in Show on the day. BIS Int.UK.Nor.Swe.Fin.Nord.Ch. Courtbourne Sheldon checked in as 2nd Best Male, himself a well established winner, having won his UK champion title in three straight shows - at Crufts, the Houndshow and Paignton - last year, which is an absolutely remarkable achievement. He was bred and is owned by Kristin Hoff and Jørgen Kristensen in Norway. As Best Male 3 and 4 followed Ch. Pearl’s Legacy’s Diamond and Ch. Skyborn Crossing the Atlantic, sire of aforementioned C Sheldon. Bitches and Best in Show were judged on Saturday, and Best of Opposite was Int.Nor.Swe.Dk.Nord.Ch. Courtbourne Sagittarius, also sired by S Crossing The Atlantic and bred and owned by Kristin Hoff and Jørgen Kristensen in Norway. ‘Zuki’ was Whippet of the Year in her home country in 2014 and 2015 and won the Norwegian and Nordic Winner titles in 2014. 2nd Best Bitch was a daughter of ‘Kenzo’, Int.Swe. Fin.Dk.Nord.Ch. Twyborn Isabelle Riviére (Nordic Winner in 2015), bred by Michael Vikström and owned by Anna-Karin Widén of Fornix Whippets, and 3rd and 4th Best bitches were Ch. Mac Bell’s Hold Your Horses and Bliefrost Afrodite’s Charmy. On the ‘Skokloster’ day on Sunday, Whippet bitches were just THE sight to watch in Strömsholm. I can’t recall seeing such depth of quality often, and especially outside Scandinavia or the United Kingdom. The ever delightful Mrs Patsy Gilmour once again found her Best Bitch and Best of Breed in SBIS EUW’15 Int.Nor.Swe.Fin.Nord.Ch. Shootti, bred by Susanne Forsgren in Sweden and owned by Mona Riberg, Steinar Elnes and Randi Juliussen in Norway. It caused somewhat a deja vu feeling to watch ‘Henie’ triumph at Strömsholm this year, as she got her first notable win in the show ring

under Mrs Gilmour at the FCI European Dog Show in Oslo in 2015, when she won Best of Breed and Group-2. She has had a great run of success since then, having won the Finnish Winner title at Helsinki and the FCI Eurosighthound Winner the same year, Best of Breed with 2nd Best in Show at Strömsholm last year, and Best Bitch with Best of Opposite at the Finnish Whippet National earlier this year in June. As 2nd Best Bitch emerged an overseas visitor from Italy, BIS SBIS WW’16 Int.It.Swe.Rus.A.Cro. Ch. Sobresalto XxX, bred by Annalisa Rovani and Arnaldo Cotugno from Naples and owned by Enrico de Gaspari. ‘Sexy’s list of wins is as striking as her name, and was the perfect ambassador to represent her home country at Scandinavia’s largest Sighthound Specialty, as Italy’s Nr 2 Dog All Breeds in 2016 in both the Kennel Club and Cajelli systems, and Top Sighthound in the Kennel Club system. Throughout her career she has won a remarkable 8 Best in Shows on International AllBreed show level and in two different countries with more than 20 Group wins. She also won the prestigious FCI World Winner title last year and was Best Bitch at Strömsholm’s continental counterpart, the Donaueschingen Sighthound Festival in 2015. Also to my knowledge, their home-bred SBIS VWW’11 EUW’05 Int.F.It.Ch. Sobresalto Jamiro Quai, owned by Andrea Ragaini, remains the only foreign-bred and owned Whippet to win Best in Show at the Swedish Whippet Club National Specialty. He did so in 2006 under Whippet authority Nenne Runsten of Airescot fame. Ironically, it was Mr Cotugno under whom aforementioned ‘Henie’ won Best Bitch at the Finnish Whippet National just a month earlier. 3rd and 4th Best Bitches were Nor.Swe.Ch. Adagio Dawn to Dark and Ch. Showline Sanorama. Under Mrs Emma North-Row, Best Male was the young Allettes Ruz Olive Musk, bred and owned by Allette Boos, Marie Gellerstam and Elisabeth M Flygar in Sweden. 2nd Best Male was Ch. Adagio Olive Drag, bred Stefan Raghammar and owned by Camilla Johansson in Sweden. Full results will eventually be published on the Swedish Sighthound Club’s website: www.svvk.se

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The Finish Whippet Club’s National Speciality Interviewed by Anna Szabo

This June on the 17th and 18th, The Finnish Whippet Club’s National Specialty and Open Shows once again brought together the finest of the breed to be found in the country, as well as several outstanding overseas visitors. The National drew 145 entries, and the Open show 110 exhibits on the Sunday. 226

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The club had the rather brilliant idea of inviting Espen Engh of Jet’s from Norway (judge of males and Best in Show at the National, and bitches at the Open show) and Arnaldo Cotugno of Sobresalto from Italy (judge of bitches at the National, and males and Best in Show at the Open show) as the


judges - former one of the world’s most well-established, sought-after judges and Sighthound authorities (officiating at this show for the second time now), latter a just newly hatched judge but with a great deal of success on his CV as a Whippet breeder together with his wife, having championed shows in many countries and having elevated his hometown Naples to a status worthy of note within the sport. Elsewhere in the issue, ‘Best in Show’ provides you with an insight into Mr Engh’s groundbreaking analysis of the Greyhound breed standard, and the magazine talks to Mr Cotugno about his kennel’s

history and breeding principles. In this union of the two opposites, the same dog emerged as Best Male and Best in Show both at the National on the Saturday, and at the Open Specialty on the Sunday: SBIS S.Fi.Ch. C’mere Oz The Great, bred and owned by Pia & Kirsi Mannila in Finland, and handled by Pia. ‘Rune’ is a familiar sight as a winner in the ring to exhibitors, having won Best of Breed with Group placements at the Stockholm International Shows and Best in Show at the Swedish Whippet Club’s National Specialty in Strömsholm in 2016, as well as the Helsinki Winner title in 2014. Sired by an icon of the breed, SBIS WW’11 Int.Nord.US.Ch. Aberdeen Remarkable In Paris, ‘Rune’ himself is a proven a stud, and several of his offspring have successfully made their debut. At the National, Best of Opposite Sex to him was SBIS EUW’15 Int.Nord.N.S.Fi.Dk.Ch. Shottii, bred by Susanne Forsgren in Sweden and owned by Mona Riberg, Steinar Elnes and Randi Juliussen in Norway, and handled by Mona. For several years now, ‘Henie’ has been one of the most prominent winners of the breed in Scandinavia, having claimed Best of Breed and Group-2 at the European Dog Show in Oslo, Best of Breed and BIS-2 at the prestigious Strömsholm (traditionally still called as ‘Skokloster’) Sighthound Specialty in Sweden and the Finnish Winner title with Best of Breed in Helsinki in 2015, as well as the ‘Whippet of the Year in Norway 2016’ award. At the Open Show, Best Bitch and Best of Opposite, as well as Best Movement in females went to Int.Balt.Est.Lit.Lat.Pl.By.Ch. Shores in Flames at Stabmeldys, bred, owned and handled by Ramune Eugenia Tovstukha in Lithuania. ‘Yochke’ is a Group winner at International All-Breed Show level and was Lithuania’s Top Whippet Bitch and Nr2 Whippet & Sighthound in 2015. I’d like to thank the Finnish Whippet Club for inviting me as their official photographer, and for having brought together such a pleasant and meaningful event. The show was pervaded with the usual sportive and joyous Scandinavian atmosphere and blessed with immaculate weather throughout the weekend.

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Juraj Sokolic Professional Handler Interviewed by Anne Tureen & Mihaela Kosic

BIS: Thank you for taking your time to do interview with us. Even you are very young, you are already one of the most famous and most successful Terrier handlers. Please, tell us from the beginning, how did you get involved with dogs? What was your first breed? J.S.: I suppose I’ve been around dogs all my life, my Father had Croatian Sheepdogs in the 1980’s and then in the 90’s he also had some Siberian Huskies. I had begged him for years to get me a Dalmatian and finally in 2001 I was able to have a three year old bitch. She came in January, and in February we took her to her first show under a judge from Holland, it was a class of 18 bitches. At breakfast my father proposed that I show her myself, and I was all for it. We came in third. The judge told me that if she had been in better condition, she would have won. Those words got me really interested in dog shows so I start learning how to improve my handling and how to get my bitch in the best possible condition. Shortly after that I started in Junior Handling,

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in February I’d shown in my jeans and a T shirt, but by March I was ready to present my dog in a different way. BIS: What did your early Junior days look like? How did it all start? J.S.: My Father was breeding and my Mother worked in a school as a school teacher, and they really supported me. They constantly scrapped their money together to take me to shows all over Europe, every second or third weekend. We had an old Fiat Ducato van, and my Father and I slept in the back. I clearly remember a show in Hungary. It is my Father’s worst memory, because it was freezing cold, but I don’t remember anything about that, all I recall is waking up and being right there, the first on the showground and I was elated about that- Yeah! All of the traveling my Father and I did left me with only good memories together. I am very grateful to my father for all the help he gave me since the first time I showed interest in dog shows, and to my mother for she done for us.


Photo 1 • Multi BIS Ch Aiola vd Schoenen Bergen at Montgomery 2015


BIS: Do You remember your first client? J.S.: I started working with my biggest client Mr. F.W. Schoeneberg 11 years ago. I was showing an American Akita bitch, and he was looking at the Akitas because he wanted to find one for his son. He’d seen me around before, with a Parson bitch which had been doing a lot of winning. He asked if I wanted to come to his kennel for a summer job. I suppose I was a bit cheeky, because I said, I know who you are, and I know your breeding, so I would like to come but not to clean the dog boxes, I already do that for my Father, I’ll come if I can really learn from you about breeding and trimming. Fortunately he was pleased with my counter proposal! I learned a lot from him since then, and he is an important person in my life now. BIS: Do You remember your first Best in Show win? J.S.: It was in Monte Negro, 2008 with my first big winner Wire Fox Terrier bitch Annabel vd Schoenen Bergen. Later on she won few more Best in Shows, many group wins, and was reserve World Winner in Bratislava, 2009, under judge Monique van Bremt. This first BIS win meant a lot to me. BIS: How does your normal day look like? What is your day to day working routine? J.S.: We, Jovana and me, have about 10-12 dogs, and that is a number we can keep satisfactorily at this moment. Dogs don’t need super facilities with huge runs, gold dog beds, the thing that makes them happy is spending time with people. They want to play with us, and we work hard to get enough attention to all of them. We have one person helping out that is living with us. I get up about 7-730and we let the dogs out at 08.00. After their morning exercise, our dogs go back in the crate where they get their lunch and rest for 2 hours. At 15.00 they go out again. Some dogs such as Airedales and Labradors have special training with fast walking for 45 min, and for that there is a friend of mine, a breeder of AMSTAFs that comes over. When a dog has everything he needs, food, water, spending enough time with people, they have no reason to get wild, barking, and our dogs are happy and calm most of the time. We are lucky to be living near the sea, so we often go to beach with our dogs where they 236

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Photo 2 • In 2014 winning Slovenian Junior Handling club winner show Photo 3 • Winning 1st place in JH on the European dog show in Tulln, 2015. Photo 4 • Best in Show Specialty in Italy, 2009, with Ch. Holiday vd Schoenen Bergen Photo 5 • With Kerry Blue terrier, Ch. Blue Hurricane Tristan, winning Best in Show In Zagreb Croatia, 2009


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can get the best exercise, swimming and running on the beach. Our dogs are never without supervision. Regarding grooming we don’t have lots of products. One shampoo for the body, one for the legs and one conditioner which I use on the furnishings for terriers. It’s the work that makes the difference- every week. Monday I do the flat work, Tuesday the body Thursday or Friday the legs. Flat work is 40 min per dog, the body is an hour or hour and a half. But you need to do this every week. If one Monday you skip the flat work, you will have to work twice as much next Monday, and the results will not be the same. What you need is layering, when you get that going, you will get results. Sometimes the weather influences the regrowth of the coat, this happened to me recently with one dog. The show was a terrier special, planned long before, and you need two of those for the Italian Championship. The weather was almost 40°C, and the coat on my dog was not coming in. The show was getting nearer and nearer, and nothing happened. I had no choice, I had to try showing this dog in a coat that was too short. The judge was German, quite strict, and she said, ‘Oh, he’s very short in coat’. And I replied ‘It’s hot and I don’t want him to feel too warm’, she smiled and said that reply saved the day, and we got our CAC. Sometimes you can get by when things didn’t work out with a little humor. However, I can’t stress enough how important it is to maintain the trimming rhythm.

Photo 6 • First BIS win in Monte Negro, 2009, with Ch. Annabel vd Schoenen Bergen Photo 7 • Last BIS was at the 4 Summer Night Shows Split 2017 with Ch. Goldwing vd Schoenen Bergen, under judge Mr. Igor Selimovic Photo 8 • One weekend, 2 shows, 2 BIS wins, with 2 terrier girls, Ch. Absolutely Oh My and Ch. Aiola vd Schoenen Bergen Photo 9 • 2010, with Jovana and our 2 dogs we showed at that time, Holiday and Konrad.

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BIS: You have long hours, especially on the road, is that hard on you? J.S.: The hours of driving we handlers do every month are nearly the same as the schedule of a lorry driver, and we get no extra payment for that. Clients pay for the petrol, but there is no compensation for the time. Only driving by night is hard for me, and I do my best to avoid it, as it can be very dangerous. Between driving trips, I trim constantly, then the training, the cleaning, the food, and the driving, packing and unpacking are on top of that. I do it because I’m passionate about dogs, the pay is not the point, I do it because I love it. Nothing can replace the feeling. I had a smooth fox terrier coming over from America last year. We won BOB at Crufts. My client let me choose the bitch to cover with with him,


Photo 10 • Crufts 2015, winning BOB with Ch. Absolutely Superstitious.

and then I chose the puppy I wanted, and took him home to start preparing him at 8 months of age. He became junior World winner, junior European winner, on top of many championships he also gained his UK champion tittle. There are no words describing that feeling, and then all that hard work pays off.

box at the fairground, and we didn’t show him. That evening when we returned to the hotel, we thought we might manage to get him out for a walk, and he pranced around as though nothing had happened. They are living animals, there is nothing you can do about some things.

BIS: What would You say is the hardest part of this job? J.S.: The hardest thing is the office work. I really hate that, fortunately Jovana does most of that. Her bills are well done with the entries, the petrol, the hotel, everything laid out. It’s best to get the bills out frequently so they are also small, and more comfortable to pay for the clients. Fortunately, we have very little experience with vet bills. One time I had a wire who’d won tremendously, even Montgomery, and we wanted him to go to the WDS, we worked so hard for months, and his coat was in magnificent condition, the morning before the show he had vomited and wouldn’t even walk properly. We washed him at 4 in the morning, but he vomited again, he wouldn’t come out of the

BIS: What are your favorite breeds to show? J.S.: I enjoy showing the Smooth Fox Terriers, because what you see is what there is. You can’t hide faults much. Showing wires is something special, as after putting so much time of work on their coat you fell very proud to show it to the judge and to other exhibitors in the ring. I like the Irish, and the Airedales. They are a little more up to size, and I’m so tall. One day I’d like to show a Dalmatian again. BIS: What does your typical show day look like? J.S.: The show day starts early, we are usually among the first waiting for the gates to open at 7:30/8. I don’t understand why they don’t open before 8, every minute counts. You are at the ring not before 8:10. you set up and then its 8:30, then you start

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grooming, which takes a bit longer time when you have 8 dogs or more. And before you know it you have to run to your ring! It is not very complicated to get a man there to open earlier. It would be less stressful for exhibitors, and more relaxing for the dogs. But many organizers don’t know about showing, or even much about dogs, and still don’t want to hear in many cases what exhibitors has to say. BIS: You see a lot of different judges every weekend, it can sometimes be a closed circuit, what is your opinion on that part of the sport? J.S.: Unfortunately these days I think we have more judges that have the goal of judging as many breeds as possible, rather than studying and getting specialized in one breed or group of breeds. Most of them are people that never had a litter, or even, in some cases, a dog at home, so how can they see quality in a young, not finished dog, or how can they truly respect the work of breeders or handlers, when they never made up one champion? Also I think there are too many “fault” judges, that’s the first thing they look for when the dog enters the ring, the faults. But you must find the positive things that will help the breed in the future, things that will improve the breed. Many “of these judges see a dog moving well and think; he walks the best, he wins. But also many dogs walking on the street move well. We are looking for type first. If the breed has problems in upright shoulders, look for the dog with good shoulders, not just general things like if he moves well. In view of current judging, and I see it every weekend, I have to conclude that many of the all rounders don’t study up on the individual breeds. They should be attending breed specific seminars, and speaking to breeders around the world where they are traveling. Of course we need to have all rounders in smaller shows, but if they know they have a certain breed coming up, why not study? When you have the WDS, the European Show, you cannot be judged by anyone less than expert, that judge needs to be aware of the issues of that breed, that’s what makes this show special. Unfortunately in few last years you can see also on these big shows, organizers choosing judges to judge the breeds they never had any involvement before in, and that is something that FCI should 240

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Photo 11 • In USA, showing the smooth fox terrier Ch. Absolutely at Last Photo 12 • In the ring with Dalmatian, Ch. Dalmino Vodoo Vision Photo 13 • In Split, showing wire fox terrier Ch. Goldwing vd Schoenen Bergen, moment before he won BIS.


not let happen!

Photo 14 • With friends at the World Show In Moscow, and our dogs winning 4 World Winner tittles. Photo 15 • Judging Futurity at the Wire Fox Terrier Club of Central States, 2017, with the winner, 10 months old puppy Halcar Padraig Photo 16 • Winning Supreme Best In Show with Ch. Aiola vd Schoenen Bergen, at the 4 Summer Night Shows Split 2016

BIS: What are some of the most memorably worst recollections from the show rings? J.S.: People start acting up at the show because they are rushing, and under incredible stress, there are many contributing factors, but even someone basically calm with lots of experience like myself can become stressed as a result of the organization. One time in Maribor it was pouring rain, so I left the dogs with Jovana in the hotel and went to the grounds to set up the tent about two meters from the ring, allowing space for people to walk by. When I came back with Jovana and dogs, someone else had set up another tent right smack in front of me so I couldn’t see the ring, and people were threading through our space trying to get by. However even worse than that, the organizers had mounted a loud speaker right behind me. I don’t understand what the organizers are thinking at so many shows in Europe, we aren’t there for a disco, to drink beer, or have a good meal. We are all there for the dogs, so everything should be done to make them experience on show as best as it can be. I went to speak to the DJ about this twice, asking him to move the speaker or to put the volume down, trying to reason with him. Everyone was complaining about the noise, and finally someone came and unplugged the speaker. The DJ came storming into my tent and started screaming at me. I said, first of all, you need to get out of my tent. I have my dogs here, one is 6 months old, and they are going to get nervous. He continued screaming, and stormed off to get the organizers. They all came back and started screaming again, so I calmly said: get out of my tent, now. I put my bitch back in the crate and walked out so they followed me and I said, if you continue, I will pack my things and I will make you pay for my trip, my hotel, and the entries, and I have 10 dogs so think about that. They decided to go away, with no apologizing. If the organizers are going to behave like this, I don’t want to come back. They often forget they are here because of us, exhibitors and not other way around! On the other hand there are many shows where organizers do a great job, and we exhibitors are very grateful to them!

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Photo 17 • Day to remember, BIS at one of the biggest European shows ever organized, with an entry of 12000 dogs.

BIS: What is Your favorite show in Europe and Worldwide? J.S.: Montgomery is the best. For me there is nothing like Montgomery in all the world. This is where you understand what breeding and showing is all about. People from all around the world come here every year in October to show or see world’s best terriers! In Europe that are the 4 Sumer Night Shows in Split, Croatia. Great organization, and absolutely amazing atmosphere around exhibitors makes this show unique in the world, where it is really more about being there then winning with your dog! BIS: What skill do you respect with judges? J.S.: I respect judges that have breeding and showing experience. They are the ones that usually give all their time and focus on the dogs they have in the ring, and are especially soft and understandable with young and unexperienced dogs. I really enjoy showing under breeder judges as they usually explain their decisions, and are ready to get in debate on the matter of faults and virtues on dogs he have in the ring. A few weeks ago we were at the Split shows, and we had a judge from Argentina, Mrs. 242

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Patricia Nemirovsky de Alsina. I was very happy to show under her, as you could see she was enjoying her appointment and going over the dogs giving enough time to handlers and dogs to show them self in the best way they can. BIS: You have shown your dogs all over Europe and in the USA. What is the difference between showing in the US and Europe? J.S.: In the US the show system is different in many ways. There are many more handlers there in Europe, and fewer amateur exhibitors. I felt that in Europe there are fewer and fewer big breeders, and more and more exhibitors that come to show for a few times with their pet and never come back again. Most of these exhibitors you can see at German and Austrian shows. In America organizers are paying much more attention to exhibitor needs, compared to Europe where in time shows are becoming more adjusted to visitor needs. We need visitors at shows, so we can get some new people interested in our sport, but focus MUST always be on exhibitors! Austria and Germany are some of the worst countries to show your dog if you are a professional


handler. They restrict you with the space you can use, even though you brought them 10 dogs to show and paid the same amount of money as 10 individual exhibitors. You are not allowed to use exercise fences inside, and you have to go outside to walk your dog. There wouldn’t be a big deal about it if they had outside tents in a case of rain so you and your dog don’t have to get wet. And now comes one of the most ridiculous rules they have, you are not allowed to use a dryer at the show, so when you go outside with your dog in the pouring rain you are not allowed to dry him when you get in!? Of course, all grooming products are forbidden, even brushing in the main ring, but on the same showground you can easily buy all those forbidden products from the shops that are of course paying for their stand space. These things make me and many other exhibitors angry and it is something that should be changed, because all organizers, kennel clubs, and visitors are there because of our interest in breeding and showing dogs! BIS: Would you implement some of the things from the US system here in Europe? J.S.: I would like to see a pointing system here in Europe, as it would be much more interesting to show your dog during the year. I would also like that the regulations for becoming a champion were more difficult to achieve in many European countries! That the rules are different between the breeds, based on the usual entry number they have on shows, and that you need to beat a certain amount of dogs in order to get your challenge certificate for championship title. I think would create more interest for exhibitors, and that they would stay longer in this sport. BIS: Is the Euro Dog Best in Show win with the stunning Aiola the highlight of your career so far? J.S.: Yes for sure, even though some much smaller wins with certain dogs, made me more proud and happy. BIS: What went through your mind at the moment you were called as the winners? J.S.: In that particular moment nothing, only the joy and happiness. Later on, after few days when I got back home, I realized that with this win we will be

Photo 18 • Montgomery, 2015, with Ch. Aiola vd Schoenen Bergen winning Winners on the National Specialty. Photo 19 • Winning Supreme Best In Show with Ch. Aiola vd Schoenen Bergen, at the 4 Summer Night Shows Split 2016 Photo 20 • Family photo with Ch. Absolutely Oh My, winning BOB at the Hatboro show, Montgomery weekend.

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remembered in dog show history years later. BIS: Did you have one of those special dogs close to your heart? If so, who was it? J.S.: I had few special dogs close to my heart. The first one was my Dalmatian bitch named Bella, then there is a Parson bitch named Baba, which is now 16 years old! She was the one with whom most of my Junior Handling wins were made. In the recent times there was a beautiful smooth fox terrier called Dustin. His attitude and temperament, together with his beauty made him very special to me. Together we made some amazing results in show rings! BIS: Please mention a few top winners you had over the years. J.S.: Most wins I made were with the Lakeland terrier Aiola vd Schoenen Bergen. She won BIS at the European show 2016, reserve group winner on the World show 2016, Supreme BIS winner at 4 Summer Night shows in Split, Winners at Montgomery, and many more group and BIS wins. Her father Ch. Nujax Rising Sun at Saredon was also very big winner, with Crufts BOB, the World winner title and many group and BIS wins. Absolutely Superstitious, Smooth Fox Terrier, Crufts BOB winner, UK and American Champion. Absolutely Oh My, another Smooth Fox, became Crufts winner, European BOB winner 2015 and 2016. A young dog that I am showing at the moment, Wire Fox, Goldwing vd Schoenen Bergen, has started winning a lot in the last few months. He’s had many group wins, and a few BIS, including BIS on the last day of Split Summer Night Shows.

Photo 21 • In Portugal with Ch. Absolutely Superstitious, Dustin, winning rBIS under judge Carla Molimari Photo 22 • With Ch. Nujax Rising Sun at Saredon, in Pisa Italy 2012, winning BIS Specialty under judge Mr. Tomo Pavic.

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BIS: Where would you like your career to go from here? Where do you see yourself in five or ten years? J.S.: That’s the hardest question so far. I would like to start breeding in the near future, since raising young puppies, and later on seeing them doing well in the rings is something that makes me happiest with dogs. BIS: You juded the Junior Handling competition at the World Dog Show in Milano. What is your opinion about Juniors? J.S.: Junior Handling is especially close to my heart. I


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think there should be more attention put on Juniors. They are the future of this sport, and we need to do a lot in order to keep their interest in this sport, especially in these new days. Once a young girl won the Junior handler competition at a big show and she was thrilled. At the podium the judge said; ‘Congratulations, and thank goodness this is over, I don’t like judging this junior handler thing’. That was such a let down for her, and it made me so angry. Young people can build their self confidence in this sport, and if properly instructed, they can have a good future in dog showing. Some countries go overboard with fancy figure training, and it’s not about the dog anymore. I am glad that the FCI changed those rules, and I hope that all the kennel clubs, and judges will respect it. One time a I saw a handler who usually shows poodles put sparkling powder on the Scottish terrier he brought in the ring, I couldn’t believe it. The dog must be good, he must be in good condition, well groomed and shown well, anything else is unnecessary! That is something we need to work on to let Juniors know what is right and what is wrong and unnecessary. BIS: What would you like your legacy to be? J.S.: To be one of the people that will help our sport improve in the future and that in 20-30 years there will still be good and hard working breeders and handlers, with judges who are knowledgeable in breeding and evaluating which dogs are the best for future of certain breed. BIS: What is the most important advice you received? And what would be your advice for all the beginners and future Junior Handlers, some day professional handlers? J.S.: The most important advice I can offer is to work hard, because it pays off sooner or later. Respect other breeders, exhibitors and judges, but also stay strong on your principals, and do not settle for less then you deserve! A handler’s life is not an easy life, and you need to be prepared for this. Along with much responsibility there are long hours of driving, loading, unloading, grooming, running, showing, training, and the one I hate the most, office work. You need to know that it is not going to be easy for you or your family, but if you are passionate enough about it you can do it all! 246

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Photo 23 • At the World Show in Milano, 2015, judging Junior Handling. Photo 24 • In Szilvasvarad 2003, winning Junior Handling with Ch. Suzans Pride Barbara, Baba Photo 25 • Winning 3rd place in BIS with Ch. Goldwing vd Schoenen Bergen under judge Mrs. Patricia Nemirovsky de Alsina


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