The Hovawart Club of Great Britain


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Breed Notes - 9 Oct 2013
“Phew!” can hardly hit the key board today, we have been repairing fences and erecting new ones, and my shoulders and right arm are showing the strain! As soon as the leaves start dropping the “holes” appear in the hedgerows, and create an interesting challenge for busy Hovawarts pottering in the paddock, especially if a brace of pheasants are hiding the other side!

Val Shone rang with the sad news that their old dog Tye had died in his sleep at the age of 10 years and 8 months. He was a blonde male of Julie’s breeding and we send our condolences to all Val’s family. It is a good age, though, for a big male, and I think our longevity in the breed is very good by comparison with other large breeds.

John has asked me to mention the club calendars. We have lots in stock, and they do make nice presents for that elderly Aunt you never know what to buy at Christmas. The cost is £8 + postage and you only need to send us a quick e mail to have one in the post the following day. I hope there will be a picture on the club website in the fullness of time.

There has been another addition to the IHF list of champions on their web site. I am sure Craig is very proud to find his lovely blonde girl, Annvad Daimys Princess for Hosarvar, now listed with a photograph, only the second from the UK. It’s quite an achievement when you realize just how many Hovawarts there are in Europe, and what a tiny minority we have here in the UK. Ann and Craig must be really pleased, congratulations.
There was a good crowd at the Nesscliffe village hall to hear Michael Kunze’s talk, which was centred on the breed standard, and highlighted some of the points that breeders should be especially concerned with, including tail carriage and jaws and teeth. There is no doubt that there are different degrees of emphasis for judges on the continent, particularly in Germany, and in the UK, but it is important for us to remember that our breed origins are in the Hartz mountains of what was East Germany, so that the values of that country should not be lost to us. The talk was accompanied by some graphic photographs, and it is gratifying to learn from Michael that he felt that as a whole he felt our stock held up well compared to the dogs on the continent.

In the afternoon, six brave souls undertook a hands-on judging assessment, going over 5 equally brave and stoic Hovawarts, subjected as they were to the equivalent of 9 classes in one afternoon (the 3 assessors also had to go over them, of course). Unlike an actual show in the UK, the candidates had to list the virtues and faults of the dogs before them, as well as placing them in order, and giving reasons for their choice of placement…quite a contrast from the usual line or two of praise for the top 2 in each class, ignoring almost every fault as well as any dog placed third or lower. I must say, as a discipline, I do like the continental approach of a grading and critique of every dog, although I suspect that it might overtax a few of our judges if they had to do it here.

Elaine Betts
This article was posted on: 09-Oct-13