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April 1999 Newsletter - Volume 2. Issue 20

Table of Contents

1998 MB-F, Inc.

You may use this paragraph as permission to reprint any article in the MB-F Newsletter providing 6rticles are printed in their entirety, proper credit is given to the author and to the MB-F Newsletter, and a copy of the publication in which it was reprinted is sent to the MB-F Newsletter, P.O. Box 22107, Greensboro, NC 27420. Opinions expressed by authors in this publication are their own and are not necessarily endorsed by the publisher. Publisher reserves the right to edit.


A Brief Word From Our Editor

We are very pleased to welcome John S. Ward as a regular columnist to the MB-F Newsletter. Anyone who has been in dogs for any length of time will recognize Jack’s name. We believe he continues to have important ideas to contribute to the sport and are delighted he’s agreed to share them with all of us. We consider his first column in the Newsletter to be very timely.

Jack Ward has been a breeder, trainer and exhibitor of Cocker Spaniels since the early 1950’s. He has been an obedience judge since 1961 and has served on several AKC Obedience Advisory Committees. He was elected to the Board of Directors of AKC in 1974 and served until 1994. He served as its Chairman from 1992 ‘til 1994. He is currently a member of the American Spaniel Club, the Middleburg Kennel Club and the Mt. Vernon Dog Training Club.

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From Where I Sit...
by John S. Ward

The MB-F organization has asked me to contribute to its’ Newsletter on a regular basis and I am pleased to accept their offer. The subject matter will be of my own choosing and my observations will not necessarily be those of MB-F. I will enjoy this assignment and I trust you will find my contributions both interesting and provocative.

This past December I attended the quarterly meeting of the AKC Delegate body in New York City. One of the items read was a listing of new Delegates accredited since the previous meeting in September. I would like to discuss this topic more fully, but I think it would be helpful at this time to review the functioning of the Delegate so that my comments may be more readily understood.

As you know, the AKC is a club of clubs and currently it consists of a mixture of approximately 500 all-breed clubs, parent breed clubs and obedience and field trial clubs. Each member club is entitled to designate a Delegate to the AKC and these Delegates constitute the body governing that organization. The Delegates must approve any change to the Rules governing dog registration and to the conduct of Dog Shows. In addition, the Delegates are responsible for the Constitution and Bylaws of the AKC and the election of 12 of their own members to a Board of Directors, which is responsible for the day-to-day operations of the club.

It is evident that each Delegate carries a heavy responsibility and the choice of that Delegate should be of serious concern to each member club. I was therefore greatly surprised to find that, in the period between the two quarterly meetings, 20 new Delegates had been approved by the Board of Directors. At this rate approximately 80 new Delegates would be approved each year, which is equivalent to a turnover of about 15% of the 500 Delegates on an annual basis.

As is the case with most parliamentary bodies seniority becomes important in determining the impact an individual has on the parent body. In my experience it takes several years for each Delegate to become effective in representing his own club and in participating in the decision making process at the national level. This has become even more significant with the advent of Delegate Committees created to study various substantive issues and topics. Membership on a Delegate Committee is an elective process and it should be obvious that experience and tenure enhance a Delegate’s prospect for election.

Member clubs should take a long, hard look at the procedure used to elect their Delegate. The selection of a Delegate is at least as important as the election of any other officer of the club. The individual selected should have breadth of vision and a strong, commitment to the preservation of our wonderful sport. He or she must have the time and the desire to attend four meetings a year. The club should be prepared to pay all the traveling expenses of their Delegate and should not be influenced by the individual’s ability to pay all or part of these expenses. As indicated above, the club should be prepared to guarantee long term tenure to the Delegate without the politics that sometimes surround the election of officers in a club.

Finally, the relationship between a club and its Delegate is a two-way street. The Delegate must be prepared to keep his club fully informed with regard to upcoming issues and must be willing to accept his or her club’s decision on how to vote on issues before the Delegate body. Nevertheless, it must be realized that motions come before the Delegates that were not anticipated and the club must accept the fact that the Delegate will sometimes be called upon to vote without prior consultation with his parent organization.

Good Luck in your selection of a Delegate!

Now, I’d like to discuss the structure of the AKC itself and offer my views as to how it may be reorganized in order to function more properly and efficiently.

The present structure of the AKC is essentially the same as it was over 100 years ago when it was first organized. Policy and Rulemaking are vested in a Delegate body consisting of representatives from over 500 member clubs. There are now more Delegates than there are Congressmen and women in the U.S. House of Representatives. Quarterly meetings are held in New York City and some Delegates travel as far as 3,000 miles to attend these meetings.

In spite of this cumbersome process the Delegate body is not truly representative of the Dog Fancy. The AKC is a club of clubs, but not all dog clubs are members of the AKC. Roughly over one-quarter of the total number of dog event giving clubs are members and have a voice in governing the parent body. Nonmember clubs literally have no way of influencing the deliberations of the Delegate body.

This situation was addressed by a committee of AKC Delegates created for examining the structure of the AKC and making recommendations as to possible organizational changes. The committee produced a thoughtful and well-reasoned set of recommendations for a structure that would be more democratic and representative of the sport by adopting a pyramid form of government.

The principle underlying their proposal is that all event giving clubs are entitled to become members of the AKC without going through an election process. They further propose the country be divided into a set of regions, each of which would have approximately the same number of event giving clubs. These regions would hold periodic meetings throughout the year, would elect governing bodies and would designate representatives to a national Board of Directors which would be responsible for setting Policy and making Rules governing the sport on a national basis.

This type of organization would have several distinct advantages. It would, of course, be truly representative of the sport and would insure that all voices would have an equal input on a geographic basis. In addition, by carefully choosing the size of the regions, travel costs would be held to a minimum and attendance would thereby be encouraged.

This approach, of course, is not without it’s problems. For instance, special provisions would be necessary for national breed clubs and perhaps for clubs devoted to performance events. Nevertheless, its advantages are such that the concept should be seriously considered.

What are the chances of this approach being adopted? Obviously the biggest hurdle to its adoption is the fact that the Delegate body would have to vote itself out of existence. On the other hand, a dedicated group of Delegates reached these conclusions and were courageous enough to present their findings to their parent body. What can you do about it? Raise the issue on every appropriate occasion and let your views be known as opportunities present themselves.

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A Word From the Canine Health Foundation

International Kennel Club Shows, Sponsored by Ralston Purina
Raises over $75,000 For the AKC Canine Health Fountation

Chicago… The International Kennel Club with its new February dates and beautiful McCormick Place location has added a jewel to the crown of premier dog shows. The Blackhawk and Park Shore shows held on February 25 and 26, and the IKC benched shows on February 27 and 28 drew entries of over 9,000 dogs. The spectator crowd was the largest of any dog event ever held at McCormick Place.

Held as a benefit for the AKC Canine Health Foundation, the IKC Saturday show had both the biggest entry and the most spectators. Ralston Purina added to the excitement with a new hospitality booth and the addition of the Incredible Dog Events. The AKC Canine Health Foundation also introduced its new booth and had a very successful membership drive at this show. A charity ball was held Saturday evening for over 700 guests which added to the total raised to benefit canine health research.

CHF Event Chairperson, Bruce Korson, said, “The venue for this event is so beautiful and spacious it easily accommodated record crowds, entries and exhibits. We would like to send our sincerest thanks to every dog person that supported this event, Ralston Purina, IKC and everyone involved for making this an extraordinary celebration and contributing to the health of dogs.”


Aurora, OH…Clubs and individuals can now order a video about the future of canine health. Filmed at the University of Pennsylvania, School of Veterinary Medicine, the video features leading scientists talking about and demonstrating the canine genome mapping project. “Some of the work that scientists do is very visual, we hope people will enjoy seeing research up close,” said Robert Kelly, Chairman of the Foundation Grants Committee. The video runs for eight minutes and can be ordered for $10.00, including shipping and handling. Clubs that would like to have a speaker and program on canine health with the video should contact the office of the AKC Canine Health Foundation, 251 W. Garfield Road, Aurora, OH 44202, or call 330-995-0807, or toll-free 1-888-682-9696.


The latest information on canine health will be available to members of the AKC Canine Health Foundation through a twice-yearly newsletter. The cost of membership is $25.00 a year; $40.00 for two years. Contributing members who give $50.00 or more receive a membership pin.

“It’s a great way to support canine health and become part of the effort to help our dogs,” said Dr. Robert J. Hritzo. Over 100 members were signed up at the International Kennel Club in Chicago, the first time that membership was announced. To receive a membership application, call toll-free PH: 888-682-9696, or write AKC Canine Health Foundation, 251 W. Garfield Road, Suite 160, Aurora, OH, or contact the web site: www.akcchf.org.


The AKC Canine Health Foundation and Ralston Purina Company are the co-sponsors of a $200,000 research project titled, “Integrated Map of Canine Gene and Microsatellite Loci.” In order to most efficiently study canine inherited diseases, genetic maps are essential for locating and identifying the genes causing such diseases. This research will seek to create a genetic linkage map, which will determine the location of the genes on the canine chromosomes.

Dr. Donald Patterson, DVM, D.Sc., of the University of Pennsylvania and Dr. Elaine Ostrander, PhD, will lead the effort. They hope to identify dog genes along with adjacent markers, thereby determining the location of these genes and markers on the existing human and mouse maps. This would enable the canine gene map to be lined up against the human and mouse maps, thus providing a substantial amount of information to canine researchers that is already available to human researchers. The homology between the human and canine genome is over 85%.

From this study, geneticists should quickly increase the rate at which they are able to identify the genes responsible for inherited diseases in all breeds of dog. “We are pleased and excited to be involved in a basic research program that should benefit all dogs in the years to come,” said Dr. David Bebiak, Vice President of Pet Products Research and Development for Ralston Purina Company.


Canine research made a significant leap forward in 1998 with six new genetic tests including; canine von Willebrand’s disease in Pembroke Welsh Corgis; Manchester Terriers and Poodles, Dr. George Brewer, University of Michigan; Stationary Night Blindness in Briards, Dr. Gus Aguirre, Cornell University; Progressive Retinal Atrophy in Cardigan Welsh Corgis, Dr. Simon Peterson Jones, Cambridge University; and Cystinuria in Newfoundlands, Dr. Paula Henthorn, University of Pennsylvania. This is the largest number of new canine genetic tests made available in one year. Scientists predict that this number will expand each year as research progresses on the canine genome map. All of these tests were developed by researchers in the United States and funded by the AKC Canine Health Foundation, with the exception of the test for Progressive Retinal Atrophy in Cardigan Welsh Corgis a project at Cambridge University, England.


The AKC Canine Health Foundation has announced the funding of a study entitled, “Search for DNA Markers for Canine Mammary Carcinoma.” Dr. Vilma Yuzbasiyan-Gurkan, PhD, will conduct this two-year study, co-sponsored by the Skye Terrier Club of America, at Michigan State University.

Breast cancer is one of the most common cancers in dogs. Cancer is the leading cause of death from disease in dogs. The possibility exists that in some breeds, there is a predisposition to the development of breast cancer. The identification of this gene is the major focal objective of this project.


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In Memory of Hugh M. Witt, Jr

It is with deep sadness we report the passing of Hugh, a dear friend and one of our Superintendents, after a lengthy illness. Hugh had been a “weekender” Superintendent with MB-F since 1980. He and his wife, Jean (a full-time employee), worked many shows together, primarily up and down the East Coast.

Hugh was born in Richmond,VA, April 6, 1930. He graduated from Virginia Tech in 1952 with a B.S. in Science. Upon graduation he was commissioned as a 2nd Lieutenant in the U.S. Army and spent the Korean War assigned to a missile battalion outside Washington, DC. After the war he became an Insurance Agent for the Insurance Company of North America (INA). In September 1955 he was married to Jean Stephenson and they moved to Charlotte, NC. Greensboro, NC became his home in 1962 when he became a partner in “The Insurance Center”. They had two children, Hugh M. Witt III and Mary Parker Witt.

Over the years his love for dogs was the driving force behind his raising and breeding first Boxers and then English and French Bulldogs. He was Past-President of the Carolina Kennel Club and the Bulldog Club of America, Div. VII. It was his involvement with Bulldogs that led him to MB-F in 1980 when he became a weekend superintendent. He retired from the insurance business in 1995 and from traveling to shows in 1997. Below are some remembrances from his MB-F family:

A WORD about my Friend, Employee and Insurance Agent, Hugh. He was a quiet, gentle, warm and caring person. At the same time, when necessary, he was strong, solid and steadfast. You always knew exactly where you stood with him and exactly what he expected. There was also his humorous side. He gave me a sign for my swimming pool a few years ago. Thank you, Hugh. There is still no “P” in my “ool”. Fred Lyman.

A STORY comes to mind that happened to the Witts (Jean and Hugh) and me while we were on the New England Circuit a number of years ago. We had just finished up at the first show, Holyoke KC and noticed that for the last few hours, the sky had become quite threatening. We knew we had about a two-hour ride that night to our next “home away from home,” so we wanted to be on our way as quickly as possible. As luck would have it, we no sooner got in the car than the skies opened up. We managed to get up the road maybe 30 minutes, when all of a sudden there was this PFFFFFFFFFFAFT noise. I was driving and Hugh was sitting next to me and Jean was in the back seat doing the move-ups for the next day. There was silence for a second, Hugh looked at me and I looked at him, and he asked, “Wonder what that was?” We both knew exactly what it was, but because of the deluge outside we didn’t want to face the fact that we were going to have to stop to change a tire! Hugh looked at me and said, “Let’s just drive a little further and see.” Of course being there was funnier, but this is just a small example of Hugh’s immense dry wit. Without trying he was very funny and quite an enjoyable person to travel with. Bob Carlough

WE called him “Huge” – a play on his name, but also pointing up the fact that he was a BIG man. With Hugh, what you saw was what you got. You could always count on him for a comment. He spoke his mind, but he always offered a helping hand. He cared about what he did. His quiet demeanor belied his wicked sense of humor (e-mail lines will surely miss his daily proffer of jokes). He was a gentleman. He had a great love of music that he was glad to share. He worked and interacted wonderfully with young people (my daughter has many delightful memories from time spent with Hugh and one of my stepsons remembers him from Hugh’s involvement in the Civil Air Patrol). During his last weeks he was doting upon the French Bulldog that had recently joined the Greyhound, Bulldog and cat in the household. That he lived nearly four years with an illness that was supposed to take him in three to six months is in itself a testament to the type of man he was and to his strength of character. We are glad to have known him. Dorie Crowe

I DID not know Hugh until I came to work at MB-F in Greensboro. Even though we had both shown dogs in the southeast we had never met. Since coming to MB-F, Hugh and I traveled to several shows/circuits together. During that time I got to know the Hugh I will remember – always a gentleman, willing to do the job that needed to be done, proud of his alma mater. He loved to talk about the places he had traveled but also liked to listen to your tales and see pictures of where you had been. Hugh was always willing to help and give advice when needed. He loved fine things – whether it was an animal, a piece of music, or a pretty girl! Anna Tiedemann

MOST OF my work with Hugh over the years was a lot of flying. We learned to fly at the same time. We spent a lot of time in the cockpit of an airplane together. He loved learning and he loved to read. He loved to know everything there was to know about something. If he didn’t, he would read everything there was about that subject. He was on a never-ending search to know everything there was to know about whatever he was doing – and constantly looking for more. While he enjoyed the new technology and its challenges, he loved some of the older things best because they were more difficult. For example, he enjoyed navigating using the old NDB – he found it more intriguing than just pushing a button. I enjoyed knowing him and had a really great appreciation for his intelligence. Bob Christiansen

MY RELATIONSHIP with Hugh began at a benched show in Montreal, Canada more than 28 years ago. I turned around and Lo and Behold here was a man with a Bulldog from Greensboro, North Carolina! I was impressed and I told him so. We talked and became friends. He later joined with me at Moss-Bow Dog Shows as a weekend Superintendent. Hugh was a brilliant man with excellent ideas and he was a loyal friend. We have missed him throughout his long illness and now we miss him even more. He will always live in our memories. May God recognize this fine man for the life he led and find a secure place in heaven for a true Dog Fancier. Tom Crowe

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The InfoDog Discussion Forums
by Jeff Trull

The internet is a good tool for information retrieval on any subject imaginable and dog shows are no exception to that list. What makes the internet a great tool is it’s ability to provide us with ways to communicate, collaborate, and interact with other people having similar interests and ideas all over the world without ever having to leave our homes or computers. Sometimes this communication is accomplished through e-mail between friends, e-mail discussion lists also known as listservs, real time chat rooms, and online newsgroups (usenet for you internet veterans). Each of these methods has it’s own uses, benefits, and limitations. Let’s take time to do a small review of each of these communication methods available on the internet and then compare them to the features of an online discussion forum, specifically the new InfoDog discussion forums.

E-mail is great for one-on-one communication with friends, business contacts, and soliciting information from web hosts on the internet. It is a private means of sending messages intended only for designated recipients. Technology now makes it very easy to send and receive e-mail messages and most people today recognize an e-mail address even if they don’t have one themselves. How many times a week do you hear or see this notation: someone@somewhere.com, pronounced ‘someone at somewhere dot com’ or the ever popular mbf@infodog.com? E-mail addresses are becoming as common as phone numbers and everyone online has one.

An extension of e-mail communication is the e-mail discussion list or ‘listserv’. This system allows people to subscribe to an e-mail list that only discusses a certain topic such as dog shows. Someone will post a message to the list and all subscribers to the list will receive a copy of the message in their e-mail box. They have the option of responding to the message and their response is in turn e-mailed to everyone on the list or they can read or simply discard the e-mail and wait for the next message to arrive. Subscribers to a busy list or two could easily receive hundreds of messages a day in their e-mail box that they would have to sort through. Although somewhat inefficient, it is a very popular means of following topics of interest electronically. Once you subscribe yourself to a list the information is automatically forwarded to your e-mail box and all you have to do is read through it.

Another popular internet communication method is real time chat. Chat rooms allow multiple people with similar interests to speak (via typing) with one another in real time. America Online users are most likely quite familiar with these chat rooms as there are thousands available through the AOL service. Internet enabled chats used to require separate client software, but with new technologies such as JAVA and DHTML oftentimes all you need is a standard web browser such as Netscape Navigator or Internet Explorer to participate. People schedule chats and anyone interested just logs in at the scheduled discussion time to talk with others about the chat room’s topic of discussion. One drawback to this is you have to be available at the time of the chat or you miss out on the discussion and are left wondering what was discussed. Sometimes a log of the chat is posted for people to review after the conclusion of the discussion, but there are no means to interject your own thoughts or opinions because the discussion is over.

Newsgroups are a place online to read and post messages related to a single topic and they are most closely related to online discussion forums. Technically speaking they are first generation discussion forums as far as the internet goes and there are thousands of groups available for any topic imaginable. They exist with or without the world wide web in the case of usenet and require their own client software and protocol (NNTP) to view them. Don’t worry though, most web browsers today include a built in news group client that makes viewing the newsgroups easy and seamless. Newer web sites like www.dejanews.com even allow a web browser to view newsgroups without the special client software at all. There is no need to be online at the same time other people are to participate in a newsgroup discussion. Newsgroup messages travel back and forth more slowly than in chat rooms and they are stored for people to review and comment on for an extended period of time. Usually e-mail addresses are stored with the message thread so private comments can be sent to the author of the message. People like to peruse these newsgroups to see what is going on even if they don’t contribute to the discussion at hand. Two drawbacks to newsgroups are they can be difficult to navigate when there are many messages and sometimes they become cluttered with random advertisements.

Discussion forums combine many of the previously mentioned features into one program available on the world wide web at various web sites for people to use. The new InfoDog Discussion Forums have been configured to handle administrative and organizational tasks leaving participants free to focus on their content. The discussions are set up to be self maintaining and conversations will be allowed to take place over days, weeks, or even longer periods of time. Unlike mailing lists and newsgroups, the discussion forums will store all messages in a central location and organize them in a date and time format per topic so that threads can be followed in an orderly manner. This will result in well organized discussions that have more a feeling of actual conversation instead of fragmented bits and pieces of discussion segmented over multiple pages.

Let’s examine a few of the new features that have been included in the new InfoDog Discussion Forums. First of all, each forum will be run as a protected discussion. This means that anyone is free to browse and read the discussions anonymously, but if you wish to post any comments to the discussion you must first register and log in as an authorized user. Registration is an easy, one-time process. It is just a matter of filling out a small form online and selecting a user name for use in the discussions. Once you are registered a password will be instantly e-mailed to your e-mail box and you may use it to log in and post to the discussion forum of your choice. This process is very easy and it allows people to take responsibility for their posts and any heated discussions that arise will take place between real people and not anonymous abusers. Once registered, users are allowed to log in and change their password, account information, and user profiles.

A second new feature that has been added is the user profile. Profiles allow users a place to list any information they wish to disclose about themselves including interests, hobbies, and a signature file. The signature file would post a text message at the end of any message the user posts and could be a name, quote, or whatever the user wishes it to be. A profile button will appear each time the user posts and people can click the button and see the poster’s profile if they have one available. The profile option is an optional feature and is not required to participate in forum discussions.

A third new feature allows users to mark an individual forum with a date and time stamp so when they return later they can view only messages that have been placed since the last time the user was there using the forum. This will be very useful for frequent users so they can pick up reading the forums right where they left off in their last session.

Another new and useful feature is owners of messages will have the ability to go in and edit messages they have previously posted to correct errors or add information. The message is then annotated with the last date edited. This will allow those errors that slip through in the excitement of posting a message to be corrected.

A powerful search feature has also been added to allow keyword searches in specific or all forums. Users will be able to search for key words in any or all fields such as author, subject, or message, and they can further limit the scope of the search within specific time frames. A user might want to peruse all messages in the last seven days that contained the keyword “Beagle”. With the new search features they would be able to do just that.

To further protect the users of the new forums and the integrity of the discussions, a content filter has been added to prevent the use of offensive language and this filter will be modified by the administrator on an as needed basis.

A small, but fun special feature allows the typing typing of :-) and/ or :-( in a message. These text expressions will be replaced automatically with a bright yellow happy or sad face graphic appearing in the message. If people enjoy this feature more graphic expressions may be added.

The new forums will allow HTML image links to be posted, but other html tags will not be allowed in an effort to preserve a consistent look and feel for the forums.

There is also an experimental ALERT feature that allows you to alert an administrator of messages containing content that goes against the Rules of Usage. If this feature is abused it could result in the disabling of your account.

One last feature that may make it into this release of the discussion forums is e-mail notification when a particular post is responded to. For instance, someone may post a question concerning a particular show and they do not wish to keep checking the forums to see if a reply has been posted. They would simply click the e-mail notification box for that message and anytime someone replies they would receive an e-mail message informing them that a reply has been posted.

Hopefully these new features will allow users of the discussion forums to have a place to exchange ideas, have frank discussions about the sport, ask questions, and learn new things as well. The Rules of Usage that applied to past versions of the forums will still be in effect and users who violate them will lose their posting privileges. InfoDog is excited about the upcoming release of the new discussion forums and from the amount of e-mail we receive asking when it will be available, it would seem that many fanciers are excited as well. As for a release date, the new forums should be available a few weeks after this article is published. Keep checking /main.htm for details.

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In the Good Ol' Days
by Dorie Crowe

In the March issue of the Newsletter we had a letter from a reader who remembered that Champions entered in Best of Breed competition did not, at one time, count in figuring points. She said she was having a hard time convincing many of her exhibitor friends who did not realize this was relatively “new”. It was, to our recollection, in the late 70’s when this change occurred.

Did you know, for example, there were no judging schedules or catalogs as we know them today, at one time? Indeed, George Foley was responsible for many of the things in existence at shows today - and for many of the Rules. There have been many other changes that today’s exhibitors take for granted. Here’s just some of the ones that immediately come to mind:

Transfers to Best of Breed – This came into the picture July 1, 1980. Prior to that time, if you entered your dog in a show and he became a Champion, your choice was to either show him in the same class originally entered or absent the dog and lose the entry fee. Although he still could not use the “Ch” title, with this new option people could show the dog under his new status.

Best of Breed Competition – This class used to be called “For Specials Only”.

Breed Breakdowns – There is no Rule requiring any club/ superintendent to print breakdowns in the judging schedule. The first time this was done (in the ‘60’s) it was by the superintendent A.D. Mansfield (out of Virginia). He was soundly questioned when he did this. It was our organization that provided the format for printing we recognize in today’s schedules.

Unentered Dogs – There was a Rule that dogs that were not entered in an event could not be on the show grounds unless they were en route to a succeeding show (in transit), or they were being delivered to their owner/agent. Clubs had to state in their premium lists whether there was space for unentered dogs. At shows that provided space for unentered dogs, those dogs had to be in their crates, in that space and there was a special identifying crate tag that was used.

Entered Dogs Must be Shown – Any entered dog that was on the show grounds had to be shown under pain of disciplinary action. This Rule was changed, as we recall, in the ‘80’s.

Wickets and Measuring Dogs – Wickets first came into use in 1974 and dogs were to be measured only by the judge in the ring. Prior to that time exhibitors had the option of pre-measuring. All measurements, both in and out of the ring, were done exclusively by the Show Committee. Pre-measuring was done prior to the start of any judging by the Show Committee. The superintendent then wrote the measurement in the judge’s book.

Show Veterinarians – Prior to 1972, if the Show Veterinarian was not on the grounds the show could not start; the show could not continue if the vet had to leave the grounds. Did you know that it was the veterinarian who came into the ring to determine whether a dog had two normal testicles, was deaf, blind, spayed, changed in appearance, etc.? Now the judge is solely responsible for making these determinations. In addition, it’s only been recent history that permitted the veterinarian to be “on call”.

Telephone Entries – Under AKC Rules and Regulations telephone entries were illegal until 1982. The AKC approved superintendents taking telephone entries based upon a system developed by MB-F called Dial-N-Entry. In order to meet AKC Rules all superintendent telephone entry services are to have a completed Master Entry Form on file in their offices. (Too bad independent entry services don’t have to comply with AKC Rules.) It was also at this time that credit cards were first permitted for payment of entry fees.

Junior Showmanship – It was in the late1980’s that Juniors were first allowed under the Rules to substitute a dog. Prior to that time it was permitted only in limited competitions and had to be specifically spelled out in the rules of the limited competitions. Under these new Rules for Junior Showmanship it was allowed only in cases of the dog’s illness, injury or bitch in season. It was further revised in the early ‘90’s to allow Juniors to substitute for any reason (and we’ve discussed this in earlier editions of the Newsletter.)

Puppy Classes – Did you realize that prior to the ‘90’s if you sent in a puppy class entry that did not have the age division on it and the class was divided by age we were obligated to return the entry? It was only at the beginning of this decade we were finally permitted to figure the age division, providing the class was indicated and the birthdate was on the entry form. (It took us about 15 years to accomplish this change.) And, it’s only been in very recent times exhibitors were permitted to move within the age divisions (which we’ve also discussed in earlier editions of the Newsletter).

The Rules under which we all live came into being for very good and sound reasons. Many of the Rules, Regulations and Policies have changed over the years in order to progress with the times and remedy what were no longer reasonable constraints. Remember, change should be based upon what serves the entire Fancy, not just one individual or group or fad. Some changes have been for the better; some not, depending upon with whom you discuss the changes.

In January of next year I will have had my Superintending license 30 years. I distinctly remember a lot of these above-mentioned items. What do you remember? What would you change if you could? Why?

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wpe9.jpg (1939 bytes)    The Shaggy Dog Stories


Jr. Handler Wisdom

When my granddaughter was young and traveling the dog show circuits with me and our Kerry Blue Terriers, she, of course wanted to Jr. Handle. So she practiced with my bitches and was doing quite well. Then she wanted to try handling our male. After I explained to her how strong they are and more difficult to control, she departed with Blue Boy for her practice ring in the garage. Sometime later she came to me with a look of worldly wisdom on her young innocent face and stated: “Grammy, you’re right, males are harder to show than bitches. You know when you stack’em, their bladder gets in the way!” A true story submitted by Jo Ann Custer Toronto, OH

The Excited Exhibitor

I've been ‘in dogs’ for so long I can't remember when I wasn't. When I die and an autopsy is done, I know they're going to find a 20 pound hair ball somewhere. But I honestly wouldn't change the last 30 years for nothing ....... except maybe for a Best in Show.

Anyway, not long after I had gotten bitten by the show bug and I finally had what turned out to be an real honest-to-goodness show dog, I was forever hooked. In preparation for a long awaited event where I knew the points were mine, even before I left home, I was frantically packing my van for the trip to 'stardom'. I needed a crate to ride in, a crate to wait in, stand hair dryer (all Old English exhibitors have them), grooming table and tack box crammed full of all the essentials (combs, brushes, corn starch, hair spray, dry shampoo, medicine for the runs, rags to wipe whiskers and feet, scissors, stripping comb, nail trimmer, cigarettes, gum, candy bar, ash tray, medicine for motion sickness, bait, bait bag, arm band number holder, safety pins, cosmetics (for me!), ear cleaner and on and on and on).

Then, there's the dolly, suitcases, ice chest, fold-up chair, hanging clothes, extension cords, fans, buckets, bowls, extra towels and crate blankets, trash bags, paper towels and on and on and on. No matter how organized you think you are, you ALWAYS forget something. And you spend the whole time you're driving trying to figure out what it was ...... that you forgot. Such was my case over 20 years ago.

I pull into the show sight, relieved I had made it safe and sound. Spent twenty minutes finding just the right spot to 'land', playing bumper cars jockeying for the best seat in the house. Jump out, stretch, lock the van to run to the little girls room, get a cup of coffee, check out the ring sight and buy a catalog to see if there's going to be any competition for Sonny and then mosey on back to begin unloading all the stuff that took me days to prepare and pack. And four hours to get it where I was going.

I was so excited I could barely stand myself. I had it in the bag today and no one knew it but me. Just the right judge, with just the right dog. It was a gorgeous day and I was planning on where to put my newest Best of Breed ribbon in the kennel. Ahhhhhhhh, life was wonderful. Until I opened the back of the van.

"Hello, honey, is Sonny still in the backyard?"
A true story submitted by
Ellana L. Clarke, MyLuv O.E.S. (1969-1981)

How Many Dogs Does It Take To Change A Light Bulb?

Golden Retriever: The sun is shining, the day is young, we’ve got our whole lives ahead of us, and you’re inside worrying about a stupid burned-out light bulb?

Border Collie: Just one. And I’ll replace any wiring that’s not up to code.

Dachshund: I can’t reach the stupid lamp!

Toy Poodle: I’ll just blow in the Border Collie’s ear and he’ll do it. By the time he finishes rewiring the house, my nails will be dry.

Rottweiler: Go Ahead! Make me!

Shih Tzu: Puh-leeze, dah-ling. Let the servants. . . .

Lab: Oh, me, me!!! Oh Pleeeeeeze? Pleeeeeeze let me change the light bulb! Can I? Can I? Huh? Huh? Can I?

Giant Schnauzer: Broken? Who says? For your information the light bulb isn’t broken until I say it’s broken.

Malamute: Let the Border Collie do it. You can feed me while he’s busy.

Cocker Spaniel: Why change it? I can still pee on the carpet in the dark.

Doberman Pinscher: While it’s dark, I’m going to sleep on the couch.

Mastiff: Mastiffs are NOT afraid of the dark.


Chihuahua: Yo quiero Taco Bulb.

Irish Wolfhound: Can somebody else do it? I’ve got a hangover.

Pointer: I see it, there it is, right there...

Greyhound: It isn’t moving. Who cares?

Australian Shepherd: Put all the light bulbs in a little circle...

Old English Sheepdog: Light bulb? Light bulb? That thing I just ate was a light bulb?

Submitted by Norman Piche via the Internet


Humor is a good thing.

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-- particularly a true story --
please send it in and share a good laff with fellow dog enthusiasts.

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P.O. Box 22107
Greensboro, NC 27420

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