Sunday, 28 March 2010

German Wirehaired Pointer Club AGM

Today was the GWPC AGM which was held at Stoneleigh near Coventry. Although I resigned from the Committee mid term last year and was not standing again this year, I went along to support our Club and show an interest in the matters which affect both it and the membership.
As meetings go, it was relatively straight forward and nice to see a number of new faces standing for Committee.

Saturday, 27 March 2010

Bootle, Crosby & Sotuh Liverpool Canine Society - Judge Amandy Hayes (Germanus)

Today we took Winnie to Bootle, Crosby & South Liverpool Canine Society Open Show at St Helens where the judge was Amanda Hayes (Germanus). We were delighted to be awarded Best Puppy in Breed, unfortunately however Winnie did not go on to achieve anything in the Gundog Puppy Group, I think in part since she was slipping on the floor both moving around the ring and being stacked up. Not to worry, she enjoyed her day out making friends with lots of the other competitors and I got the chance to meet up with friends too.
Well done to Una Russell and her boy Kimmax Bourbon (Bisto) who took Best of Breed and went on to get G4, a well deserved win.

Saturday, 20 March 2010

The Border Collie Convention hosted by the Midlands Border Collie Club

Today I spent the day at The Border Collie Convention - the first of its kind - which was hosted by The Midlands Border Collie Club. My close friend and business partner Lisa Lister (Havocsmill) has owned, worked, shown and bred border collies for a number of years and as you can imagine, I therefore have an interest in the breed as she does german wirehaired pointers.
Together Lisa and I had a really enjoyable day. All credit to The Midlands Border Collie Club who were such good hosts - tea, coffee, wine and food were in no short supply. The day started with a breed specific talk on movement and construction by Ross Green (Fayken) who owns the breed record holder Sh Ch Tomkory Palerston at Fayken, followed by a selection of demonstrations/talks - preparation for the showring and showring handling by Jo Ratcliffe (Grandver) and Rachel Spencer (Tobermoray); breeding by Penny Forster-Cooper (Sheltysham) and Felix Cosme (Beagold) and judging by Kathy Burnell (Fieldbank) and Toni Jackson (Elbereth). Lisa and I chose to attend the show and breeding talks. Speakers were both knowledgeable and entertaining.
The talk which Ross gave was very informative and to accompany his speech he showed a selection of pictures and videos which clearly demonstrated the effect of construction on movement.
Penny Forster-Cooper discussed the different methods of breeding - inbreeding, linebreeding, and outcrossing - their advantages and disadvantages and Felix Cosme demonstrated the effects of his breeding programme for fixing a 'type' to his line.
I would have no hesitation in attending another such seminar and feel that much of what I leant today can be applied to my own breed - the GWP. Hopefully, as these events become more common place, our breed club will hold a similar event.

Thursday, 18 March 2010

Crufts 2010 and docked dogs

This year we only entered Lottie at Crufts since we were unable to enter Winnie. Although Winnie is legally docked, the law currently stipulates that she cannot be shown at a show where the public pay an entry fee to watch and as such, she was not eligible to enter.
Despite the fact that Lottie was not in the cards this year, we had a lovely day meeting old friends and catching up with everyone's gossip. The atmosphere ringside was friendly and relaxed.
Crufts is something of an institution and the show that most dog show enthusiasts look forward to entering. It is also the show that most dog lovers are familiar with - whether they follow breeds, agility, flyball, obedience - they either visit Crufts or try to follow it on the tv. It is the Kennel Club's flag ship - the show at which the best of the best appear either to represent their breed or their given sport. Sad to think therefore, that because of the current legislation concerning docking and since the Kennel Club have chosen not to find a way to accommodate the docked breeds, many of our quality dogs were unable to attend. Certainly, the fact that young docked dogs were not eligible to be entered at Crufts impacted on entries, since the numbers of dogs and bitches being exhibited in the lower (and usually age related) classes was poor.
Like many other kennels that choose to dock their puppies, it is only a matter of time before we here at Klancraig have no young dogs that are eligible for entry at Crufts, not to mention some of the other Championship dog shows that insist on charging an entry fee for spectators.
Of course we could choose not to dock but why should we when we wish our kennel to represent the versatile, dual purpose GWP that is worthy of being shown AND worked? At Klancraig we choose to dock for the welfare of our puppies, especially those that go to working homes and we will not be deterred from this even if it means that we must forego showing our youngsters.