The Hovawart Club of Great Britain


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Breed Notes - 1 Oct 2013
We are just about recovering from a Hovawart overload at the weekend, with the Club show on Saturday, and the seminar on Sunday. Fortunately, the weather gods smiled on us the whole time, although first thing Saturday did look a bit murky.
Sadly, the entries for the show followed this year’s trend, and there were 26 exhibits for our German judge, Michael Kunze, to go over. One of the advantages of having judges from the continent is their habit of critiquing every dog, so we will all be able to learn Michael’s opinion of our dogs. It must be hard for exhibitors, especially those who are new or infrequent participators, to understand why they are “down the line”, without these explanations.
Best in show was Helen & Nick Boisseau’s Freya (Pines Ankhet at Quincebois), much to Helen’s obvious delight, and her son Toby (Q.Salleron) took the honours in dogs for Tanja and Neil Connor. RBB was Lynne & Liz’s Mist (Driftingsky Mist), and RBD Freya’s litter brother Harvey (P.Hapi), owned by Susi Thayer & John MacKay. Sadly, there were no puppies entered this year, but best veteran was our Orchid (Kynyaf Tiy of P.) for the fifth year in a row. Michael was most ably assisted by stewards Rose Webster and Gill Stockton, with computer accompaniment by Susi Thayer and Bettina Williams.

In the obedience ring, Maggie Spencer had a goodly entry, and from the 3 classes her winners were the aforementioned Toby in Pre-Beginners, Ellen & Thomas Gutjahr’s Robin (D.Dusk) in Beginners and Lynne & Liz’s Drift(Tyehelva Super Summer of D.) in Novice. Janet Pearce was the steward, and I must say she and Maggie made a smashing double act.

As you may remember, this year the club brought in the KC innovation of a “show within a show”, to give up-and-coming judges more opportunity to gain hands-on experience, with Craig Hosie being the first to take advantage of the scheme. He had an entry of 18 across his 3 classes, and he found his winners in Linda Blackwell’s Meghan (Zwartbos Sandown), Julie’s Gunner (Z.Carisbroke) and Freya. I have to say that I think this idea worked very well, and I expect it to become a regular feature of our shows in future.

We were once again most grateful to those intrepid ladies from Lancashire, Maureen Taylor and Jeanette Prior (and the even more intrepid Pugs) for being our KC Good Citizen assessors. 7 tests were taken, 2 bronze, 1 silver and 4golds, with 100% success. When I suggested to the ladies that it sounded too good to be true, they most firmly said “no”, and that our standard of work was very high. Well done to all concerned, then.
Perhaps it isn’t surprising that Robin won in the obedience show, because he was also presented with the Tia Trophy on Saturday. This trophy is awarded for achievements that promote the breed away from the show ring, and Robin has been a very active visitor to an old people’s home and also been instrumental in raising a lot of money for charity. It is always so heartening to hear of dogs being involved in society in this positive way, counteracting the negative reports of canine behaviour that are so often the headlines.

Saturday ended with a somewhat impromptu party at the hall booked for the seminar. Gill thought it would be good to have an entirely social occasion for Hovawart folk to get together without the pressure of showing, obedience etc. regretfully, we couldn’t stay long enough to enjoy it, as we had to get back for the dogs, cows and hens at home, but I hear it was a really good do, although there was a quiz, so competition wasn’t entirely absent. I did save on tissues though, as there was a video show of the early days of the breed in the UK, and I am sure I couldn’t have held off the tears at seeing all the old dogs no longer with us, or indeed our relatively youthful appearances, equally long gone!

I will review the Sunday activities in next week’s notes.

Elaine Betts
01 544 318705

This article was posted on: 02-Oct-13