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  1. #21
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    Quote Originally Posted by wendy View Post
    dog beauty pageants are disgusting. Dogs bred to be displayed in this fashion lose their health, temperaments, original breed look, and original breed functions. You should be ashamed to "cheer on" this travesty. Real dog lovers cry after watching their favorite breed(s) ruined by this "sport", they don't cheer it on.
    Obviously you know nothing about dog shows and dog show breeding, so you should just avoid commenting. Have you ever even been to a show? Seriously? Or met a good breeder? Or just like bashing it online?

    I always find it interesting that horse people/riders are so quick to bash the breeding of dogs. How is it any different than breeding horse? Of course there are some breeds that are examples of things that went wrong (AQHA halter bred horses, for example), but that doesn't mean *the practice of breeding* is BAD. (Or that breeders aren't "real horse lovers"). Ugh.

    As for judges and dogs being anonymous - no, of course not. Even *I* know some of those dogs and I just dabble in my one breed.

    However, at a big show, and certainly a big and famous show - many of the dogs are exemplary specimens of their breed. So, it almost makes it hard to use their show record to help - how about that Old English Sheepdog winning from the classes today? (Although clearly they held him back for this - and who can blame them?)


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  2. #22
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    ^ Amen!


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  3. #23
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    Quote Originally Posted by Kryswyn View Post
    Anonymous my ass! Why do you think owners pay HUGE amounts for full page ads in the various show magazines with big pictures of the dog and prominent thanks to the judges who've put the dog up recently. In effect, HERE'S the dog; HERE are the judges who liked him; and BE ON THE LOOK OUT FOR HIM.

    As to Wendy's comment, she is correct MANY breeds are no longer what they were and a breed has often paid for its popularity with genetic and physical flaws and temperment changes. Rough collies for one. Back in the early 70's collies had no eye troubles. Then the fancy decided the forward placement of the eyes like the Shetland Sheepdog made for a cuter expression. They began slowly breeding the eye away from the side of the head to the front and suddenly eye problems were everywhere. No collie today should be allowed to breed without having it's eyes checked. Ditto for many breeds with their hips, elbows, and hearing.

    The tide is turning now and more and more breeders ARE educating themselves and testing their dogs before breeding.

    But also more and more dogs are being bred period, unnecessarily.
    My husband said that watching the German Shepherd lurch around the ring made his back hurt. (I love GSD's, just not the AKC standards. If I were ever in the position to get one - meaning money, space, and tons of time to invest in giving the dog training and a job - it would be one from working lines).

    Oh - and my "anonymous dog" question arose from the commentary. In past years they've pointedly remarked that dogs are only identified by entry number in order to avoid "favoritism". It is as I thought; any judge with a brain can figure it out.



  4. #24
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    Quote Originally Posted by Mara View Post
    My husband said that watching the German Shepherd lurch around the ring made his back hurt. (I love GSD's, just not the AKC standards. If I were ever in the position to get one - meaning money, space, and tons of time to invest in giving the dog training and a job - it would be one from working lines).
    I will admit to not knowing anything about the GSD standards, but based on comments on OT day, I went to the AKC website and see that the standard has not been revised since 1978.

    I wonder if the GSDs are really *different* than *they used to be* or if people have never really watched GSD show dogs before? I even went to the national breed club website and looked at the pictures of their winners back to the 1930s....they don't all look like *modern* GSDs, but it is hard to tell because they started stacking them differently in the 1950s and it changes the way the topline looks. Check out this guy from 1953:

    http://50.6.183.234/GSDReviewed/adogs/AlbertMiNoah.html

    As I have no idea, and have no reason to support the GSD standard, I might be entirely wrong. But I wonder....this is the sort of comment that we hear once a year, after Westminster. Does anyone know that it is really a *change* in the standard or the judging? Or just the perception from people who don't actually watch a lot of GSDs in the ring?



  5. #25
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    I think the "anonymous" comment was meant to describe the fact that the BIS judge has no idea until he/she enters the ring which dogs made it out of their respective groups.

    I am trying to remember if the group judges also walk in blind, but I can't.

    There is no way an active judge could be unaware of the dogs' identity. These dogs are heavily campaigned, which includes not just heavily showing, but also means that they are heavily advertised in the sport media (namely magazines) that are shipped automatically and free of charge to every judge on the AKC roster.

    Believe me, the judges know who the dogs are once they walk into the ring and see the dogs in front of them. They have probably judged them before, too, and maybe even put them up before.
    Sheilah


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  6. #26
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    Quote Originally Posted by S1969 View Post
    I will admit to not knowing anything about the GSD standards, but based on comments on OT day, I went to the AKC website and see that the standard has not been revised since 1978.

    I wonder if the GSDs are really *different* than *they used to be* or if people have never really watched GSD show dogs before? I even went to the national breed club website and looked at the pictures of their winners back to the 1930s....they don't all look like *modern* GSDs, but it is hard to tell because they started stacking them differently in the 1950s and it changes the way the topline looks. Check out this guy from 1953:

    http://50.6.183.234/GSDReviewed/adogs/AlbertMiNoah.html

    As I have no idea, and have no reason to support the GSD standard, I might be entirely wrong. But I wonder....this is the sort of comment that we hear once a year, after Westminster. Does anyone know that it is really a *change* in the standard or the judging? Or just the perception from people who don't actually watch a lot of GSDs in the ring?
    I took a look and then went further back, clicking on the sires. There is an obvious change, especially starting 2 generations back.



  7. #27
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    Quote Originally Posted by S1969 View Post
    But I wonder....this is the sort of comment that we hear once a year, after Westminster. Does anyone know that it is really a *change* in the standard or the judging? Or just the perception from people who don't actually watch a lot of GSDs in the ring?
    The standard hasn't changed a whole lot in the past 30 years, but the type that wins surely has. It is kind of like how the Western Pleasure rule book calls for the poll to be no lower than the withers and yet horses with their noses in the dirt often win.

    I am a lover of the German Shepherd Dog breed. I grew up with them, my parents bred and showed them in the late 60's and early 70's. I have lived with them for most of my life. But I was so sad to see this dog represent the breed in the group. Her feet were loose and she really did look like she was walking on her hocks.

    Sadly, with this breed, there is no "safe" line. They all have their weaknesses now.
    Sheilah



  8. #28
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    The GSD is just one of many dog breeds that have gone "off course" from their previously 'superior' standards. I think that now, with the immediacy of many resources that were not a commodity in the past, it opens up the avenue for a lot of terrible things to happen to several breeds - more interest, less knowledge, fads, the readily available people willing to breed them without discretion... This list goes on forever. Does it mean all dog breeds are ruined? No. But it certainly means a lot have been negatively affected by the vanity of Dog breed shows.

    I believe that was Wendy's point. Anyone who denies that "show specific dogs" have not, somewhere along the line, degraded from their predecessors is surely smoking something. The GSD is one such fine example: the Rottweiler, another - Rough Collies an unfortunate third. Was their decline in health promoted by dog shows and aesthetics? Yes.

    However, there have been considerable leaps in efforts to eliminate these health issues in many breeders and they specifically should be recognized for their laudable endeavors. Those who are striving to improve the breed without sacrificing quality deserve merit for trying to improve the ruination their predecessors have given them. This inheritance likely came from poor breeding practices and limited knowledge. Now that we have a better idea of what genetics cause what, hopefully we can breed out things like poor sight and dysplasia -- things that are FAR more prevalent in show-line dogs than working-line dogs. I too am sad to see the sorry specimens that constantly represent my favorite breeds: particularly the GSD and the Mastiffs.. But that's just me, and there is no denying some of the dogs entered are magnificent and as healthy as their useful, working counterparts.


    EDIT: for those who may have had their feathers ruffled, don't worry -- I've got my snark-suit equipped (8
    AETERNUM VALE, INVICTUS - 7/10/2012



  9. #29
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    ^ well duh and I mean that in the nicest way. Of course some breeds have gone way off track and I believe that people should use their pocketbooks and not support those breeders. Many of the problem breeds also have working lines and it would behove anyone interested in owning a healthy specimen to steer more towards the working lines for the time being. However, to make an ignorant blanket statement like Wendy did does not demonstrate the same degree of understanding that conformation shows are not inherently evil.

    As pointed out before, should we call horse showing the root of all evil because of Rolkur, peanut rollers, or big lick? Horse showing also gives breeders an avenue to demonstrate the merit of their breeding stock, get feedback from knowledgable judges, and develop a strong bond with their horses.

    Let's not through the baby out with the bathwater because of a few bad apples. The majority of breeds have only benefitted from conformation shows because it has created a standard for structural integrity, coat type, and disposition.


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  10. #30
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    Well, I'm pretty sure Wendy would be the first to chastise any that used any of those methods you mentioned too. Just because it happens in the horseworld doesn't make it okay to happen in the dog world. It's all about awareness - the more people aware, the less likely the issue is to arise.

    Secondly, there is a very, VERY drastic difference between horses breeding and dog breeding - there are far more people who breed dogs than horses - and far more people who breed "show-quality" (read: poorly strung together dogs) dogs than crap horses. Just saying. The horse industry is a lot smaller than the dog industry - and because it is a lot more expensive, is a very big deterrent to the idiots that run amok in the dog-world.

    "A few bad apples" does not constitute to a slew of poorly bred, early-demise dogs that were the direct result of poor Show-minded breeding. There are not a "few bad apples" - there are millions of bad apples - and just so you know, euthanasia rates are a lot higher for displaced dogs than horses.

    Also, looking at the "best of breed" winners and some of them I cannot believe won with their hyperflexed pasterns and terribly weak hocks. How?

    Don't get me wrong, I'm very familiar with what constitutes as a properly put together dog.. But I stopped watching dog shows several years ago because I was horrified to witness some of the "best in breed/show" dogs. All I can think of when I see these inflated stud prices is how many of their offspring end up in trashbags down the road because they're whored out, poorly built animals.
    AETERNUM VALE, INVICTUS - 7/10/2012



  11. #31
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    I think you have a very valid point. Nonetheless, I firmly believe that conformation shows play an integral role in maintaining standards. I truly don't see how you could have any degree of uniformity within a breed without a standard and a (relatively) objective way to prove that the dog meets the standard.


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  12. #32
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    Quote Originally Posted by Louise View Post
    I don't mean to seem catty, but, why do the women who are showing these dogs dress the way they do?
    It's always been like that.

    As good as some of these handlers are, why do they wear a color that looks horrible next to the dog? I realize that some of the top handlers may show in more than one group a night, but how much time does it take to change a pair of pants or a skirt?

    Some of these handlers need a session with that TLC show where they take the frumpiest person on the planet and give them an extreme wardrobe makeover.
    Fan of the Swedish Chef


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  13. #33
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    Quote Originally Posted by beowulf View Post
    Well, I'm pretty sure Wendy would be the first to chastise any that used any of those methods you mentioned too. Just because it happens in the horseworld doesn't make it okay to happen in the dog world. It's all about awareness - the more people aware, the less likely the issue is to arise.

    Secondly, there is a very, VERY drastic difference between horses breeding and dog breeding - there are far more people who breed dogs than horses - and far more people who breed "show-quality" (read: poorly strung together dogs) dogs than crap horses. Just saying. The horse industry is a lot smaller than the dog industry - and because it is a lot more expensive, is a very big deterrent to the idiots that run amok in the dog-world.

    "A few bad apples" does not constitute to a slew of poorly bred, early-demise dogs that were the direct result of poor Show-minded breeding. There are not a "few bad apples" - there are millions of bad apples - and just so you know, euthanasia rates are a lot higher for displaced dogs than horses.

    Also, looking at the "best of breed" winners and some of them I cannot believe won with their hyperflexed pasterns and terribly weak hocks. How?

    Don't get me wrong, I'm very familiar with what constitutes as a properly put together dog.. But I stopped watching dog shows several years ago because I was horrified to witness some of the "best in breed/show" dogs.
    All I can think of when I see these inflated stud prices is how many of their offspring end up in trashbags down the road because they're whored out, poorly built animals.
    Give some examples please. Maybe I have my rose-colored glasses on, but I've never seen a "poorly conformed" animal win my breed.

    I just have to wonder when people say "I stopped watching dog shows"....what do you mean - you stopped watching Westminster? Or did you really go to dog shows and study the breeds?

    I will believe the GSD experts if they say the breed has changed - I truly don't know, although I am sure most breeds have changed over the years. But every year people wax on about "the better dogs of their youth" as if they used to all own show-quality GSDs. Sorry, but how could a person who watches one dog show on TV a year KNOW the standard and whether or not it has changed?

    I see poorly conformed dogs all the time - but not in the show ring (the puppy mill, BYB, and shelter dogs). So again, I'm not unwilling to believe that there ARE some bad examples of breeds that have evolved too much and in a bad way; I just can't jump on the hype of "dog shows = poor conformation" (just watch Westminster for proof)...

    And naturally the dog breeding industry is larger than the horse breeding industry - it's possible to keep a dog in your home, so more people own dogs than horses. But I agree the Grace that conformation shows do play an important role in maintaining standards -- since many dog owners don't care whether their dog has good breeding, temperament or conformation (since they buy from pet shops and puppy mills), at least there are some breeders who bother to attempt to maintain the standards.


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  14. #34
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    S1969, my memory is failing me, yet again. What is your breed? I don't know anything about dog shows, but I do have to agree that the German Shepherd, in particular, stood out as horrible to watch. Maybe it's because we are horsepeople, and we have an eye for good movement, that we notice that particular flaw so clearly.

    I think that breed shows of any kind, be it dog or horse, can foster an impurity in a type of animal. If an animal wins that has a certain characteristic, that may mean that people think that the animal won because of that characteristic and they may breed for that. Soon, it is an accepted part of the breed, standard or not. Could it be that German Shepherds have always been low-slung, for example, but that now that characteristic has been exaggerated to the point where it is an accepted flaw?

    But, I think that the biggest problem any breed of dog faces is to become wildly popular. Time after time we have seen it happen, with the Cocker Spaniel, the Collie, the German Shepherd, the Irish Setter, and, look at all the problems that develop every time a new "1001 Dalmations" movie comes out. Many people, not respected breeders, see dollar signs and indiscriminate breeding begins. That may not affect what you see at a show, but it sure does affect what people buying for household pets. I would think that is one of the biggest reasons that we here are always urged to buy from reputable breeders.

    I just wish that there was some way for the novice to determine who those reputable breeders were. Isn't the AKC pretty much like the Thoroughbred registry, the Jockey Club, in that anything bred AKC can be registered? Are there different registries within the breeds that are set up more like Warmblood registries? Those would seem to be to be more of the kind of places that people like me could go to get, maybe not a show quality dog, but a dog that isn't going to come with all kinds of inbred problem.

    Showing fascinates me, but, those are awfully scary waters to jump into, IMO.

    And, yes, by the way, I did see some bling last night, and some people who were dressed very nicely (one woman in a loose red jacket with a black skirt actually looked stylish -- my definition of stylish).
    Originally Posted by Alagirl
    We just love to shame poor people...when in reality, we are all just peasants.



  15. #35
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    Quote Originally Posted by Louise View Post
    I just wish that there was some way for the novice to determine who those reputable breeders were. Isn't the AKC pretty much like the Thoroughbred registry, the Jockey Club, in that anything bred AKC can be registered? Are there different registries within the breeds that are set up more like Warmblood registries? Those would seem to be to be more of the kind of places that people like me could go to get, maybe not a show quality dog, but a dog that isn't going to come with all kinds of inbred problem.
    Yes, the AKC is just like the Jockey Club - anyone of known parentage can be registered. Which is why, in my opinion, conformation shows are important because it isn't just a breeder saying "my dog is great" but independent judges who evaluate their conformation. So, when you have an AKC Champion litter, it's VERY different from an AKC registered litter.

    But I agree with you - any sort of subjectively judged sport has the chance to go awry in the search for ribbons. But in comparison to breeding with NO criteria whatsoever - it is still the better option. And of course there are many acceptable breeding practices in between the BYB breeder and the "show" breeder. I am personally more inclined to seek out a litter that has multiple titles, not just conformation titles -- whether it's field, agility, or just a CGC...it makes it easier for prospective puppy homes to know that they are getting a good quality animal, not just a "pretty" one.

    My breed is Brittany - just finished at WKC. Have to say as much as I admire a dog in my area I am glad he didn't win so I don't have to show against him.



  16. #36
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    Default Harrharhar let's laugh at ABC News lack of fact check

    I just found this pi$$ poor news photo coverage of the show. http://abcnews.go.com/Technology/sli...-show-18465556

    Let's play a game! How many errors can you spot (in the description under the photo)?


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  17. #37
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    Quote Originally Posted by Bicoastal View Post
    I just found this pi$$ poor news photo coverage of the show. http://abcnews.go.com/Technology/sli...-show-18465556

    Let's play a game! How many errors can you spot (in the description under the photo)?
    Seemed OK to me until they got to the "Cason" (Keeshond). And the photo following that one - that little dog looks entirely unlike any Schnauzer I've ever seen!



  18. #38
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    Quote Originally Posted by Go Fish View Post
    It's always been like that.

    As good as some of these handlers are, why do they wear a color that looks horrible next to the dog? I realize that some of the top handlers may show in more than one group a night, but how much time does it take to change a pair of pants or a skirt?

    Some of these handlers need a session with that TLC show where they take the frumpiest person on the planet and give them an extreme wardrobe makeover.

    I said the same thing about Stacy and Clinton to my mom last night! There actually is an episode where they made over a young handler.

    Some of those women and their clothes made me go Is it a requirement that they look stuffed in to ugly, frumpy, suits?

    BTW I pretty much feel the same way about everything Wendy posts - .

    OMG - your cat will die if you feed it dry food!
    OMG - you will die if you eat any wheat!
    OMG - dog shows are evil!
    OMG..........
    OMG - I am right and you are stupid!


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  19. #39
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    We watch every year, but particularly enjoyed last night for the first AKC recognition of the Treeing Walker Coonhound, since our "P.D." (aka "Poochie Dog") is one.

    As for the other dogs - In the Hounds, while the American Foxhound was nice, I thought the Afghan was breathtaking, & I'm not an Afghan fan. And in the Herding, I really liked the Bouvier des Flandres; much more than the Old English Sheepdog.

    As for handler fashion - they all look pretty much the same to me. Men in black suits; heavyset women in 2-piece skirted suits. One absolutely horrid standout? A female handler from Canada who was handling one of the Nordic breeds. Our mouths fell open at her attire - kind of oddball decorated black 2-piece with. . . . just-below-knee-high what looked like scruffy rabbit-fur-lined black suede boots. Like something you'd wear out in the woods! I'm guessing she was trying to dress in some sort of Nordic manner to match the dog, but she frankly looked like a peasant woodcutter. It was truly the most bizarre handler outfit I've ever seen in decades of watching the Westminster Show.


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  20. #40
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    Quote Originally Posted by Mara View Post
    Seemed OK to me until they got to the "Cason" (Keeshond). And the photo following that one - that little dog looks entirely unlike any Schnauzer I've ever seen!
    OMG I thought Cason was his name! Haha!! Have to go back and look at that again....Yes, that would be the ugliest miniature schnauzer I've ever seen if it is one!

    And Bacardi, yes, I agree with that being the worst outfit of the night. How about Brian Livingston rhinestone shoes, though?


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