The Hovawart Club of Great Britain


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Breed Notes - 11 May 2010
I’m sorry that breed notes have been a bit sparse lately, but if nobody tells me anything it’s hard to conjure up news. Two shows to report on now, Birmingham National with Jeff Luscott judging saw Val & Dave Shone’s boy Flynn (Minches Jet of Zwartbos) going BoB. This was their first BoB so many congratulations to them. He is now 5 years old and really coming into his own. BB was Orchid (Kynyaf Tiy of P.), and RBD Lucy Campbell’s Levi (P. Monet), a first for her too, I think. Val & Steve capped a really good day by getting RBB with Rhea (Ursine vd Romerweide of Zwartbos). We very much appreciated the note in the schedule informing us that our judging would not be before 12.45. This is such a help when planning your journey, and I wish other shows would consider printing similar timings. Presumably, with the KC guidelines over judging time per dog, it would not be difficult to calculate. We had a change of judge from the original schedule, and even from the first alternative, Robin Searle, who is doing us at the Welsh KC Show in August. Jeff Luscott stood in, and in my view gave us a lesson in how show judging should be done, handling both the dogs and the exhibitors beautifully, and was a real favourite by the end of the day. The other show to report on was Working Breeds of Wales, on the 17th April. I didn’t make this one, but John was a star and took Orchid on his own. Bill Browne-Cole was the judge, and made Orchid BoB, with Alena Rabkova & Petr Kratky best dog with their Driftingsky Pascal. They had a good day, as he also won Best Dog in the Rare Breed classes. It is super to see new exhibitors, and to see them doing well…. most encouraging for the future.

We had Acorn, our 12 month old bitch, in at the Vet’s for the KC/BVA Hip X-Ray two weeks ago, and her thyroid test. Is it me or have these tests always been so expensive? The total for the X-Ray and KC submission was £125, and the blood test for thyroid just under £40 including the laboratory costs. I find it hard to insist that puppy people have these tests carried out if their Hovawart is just a family pet, although it is good to record all the puppy scores for future generations. Most people have no intention of breeding with what is just (I don’t mean that in any derogatory way!) their family pet, which is likely to be castrated or spayed, and with the normal costs of worming, flee prevention, micro chipping, inoculations etc. you need a bottomless pit of money. If the KC really want us to carry out these tests, as per their “Fit for Purpose” campaign, is there no way they could cap this cost? Owners in Surrey and the London area have quoted me sums reaching £300 for Hip X-rays. On getting Acorn’s results, happily well within the desired ranges, the KC sent the latest table of hip scores for all breeds, and it was encouraging to learn that the Hovawart breed average is now down to 10, and would be nearer 9 but for our one top-scoring 79. It does make all the care and attention we all give to the breeding programme feel worthwhile.

One little story which Maggie Spencer told me today – she got a call from the local RSPCA to say that they had got a Hovawart in their kennels for re-homing and it was rather aggressive/nervous and had had no socialization, and never been out of the house. I think they thought Maggie would take him and maybe train him and find the right home. Maggie dropped everything and went immediately only to be shown a small black and tan collie cross. I guess when you look at a book with a picture of a Hovawart, you have no idea of just what size they are. Somewhat relieved Maggie returned home dogless. Hope they do find a home for him, although shelters are having a hard time at the moment. Which brings me back to reminding everyone that we still have Harry here. In case you have forgotten, he is a 7 year old blond boy from Italy, and is in need of a loving home, probably without other dogs. His English is improving by the day, and he is very much a “people” boy. Do let me know if he might be right for you.

Elaine Betts 01544 318705

This article was posted on: 21-May-10