Great Dane Q & A
ning and have utilized those suggestions to further their own accomplishments. All breeds go through changes over periods of time. There are aspects of the Great Dane that are either better or not as strong as they were years ago. Today our Danes have consis- tently good head pieces, much more so than a few decades ago. Strong breed type is not as consistent as it should be. I believe this was a stronger asset of Danes years ago. However this better breed type was not necessarily an attribute of a good quality dog. Our Danes today have better overall quality. One issue which continues to be a problem over several decades has been proportions. This is a square breed but a truly square dog (or one that is very close to being square) is not as common as what we would like. I would like to see breeders do more homework with regards to knowing the historically consistent pros and cons of the bloodlines they are planning to use for their breeding pro- grams. In some cases this is fairly easy since, like most breeds, we have a number of wonderful breeding programs that have produced top quality dogs for decades. Using the stud dog du jour may not always be the best answer for what a program needs in order to move forward. For a couple of years judges were using a program where they were able to obtain a large number of breed approvals in one application. Personally I believe that this was not in the best interests of the sport. I don’t know many people, myself included, that could obtain sufficient knowledge of 20-25 breeds (or more) at a time. I know in Danes there are some approved judges to whom I have spoken that simply don’t get it. I receive messages from members of the GDCA about inci- dents that have occurred at shows with judges that, in some cases, don’t understand some of the primary factors that make a Great Dane what it is supposed to be. There is probably no individual situation that stands out over the rest. I simply love the sport and our wonderful breed. My involvement with Danes has afforded me a great deal of pleasure and opportunities. Like most people I think that my breed is the best you can find. In reality all dog enthusiasts feel that way about their own breed. I do like to paraphrase Rodgers and Hammerstein from a song in South Pacific when I describe our breed… “There is nothing like a Dane…” DALE TARBOX Dale Suzanne Tarbox has
sary. When I started in this breed, I heard the following quote and it has stuck with me all these years: “A good dog is a good color.” My favorite dog show memory: at the Great Dane National in 2010, my seven month old homebred harlequin puppy, CH Davisdane’s Rubber Ducky You’re the One, CD, RN, BN, CGCA, was Best Puppy in the Futurity, handled by me. I had two full sisters from the same breeding a year prior, a mantle and a harlequin, who won their large open classes and one, GCH Davisdane LongVue Abigail, was awarded Best of Winners. My girls were the only get behind their sire in Stud Dog class and he won first place Stud Dog. It was a national that I will never forget. Great Danes are truly gentle giants. Although they are very large and everything with a Dane costs more, in my mind they are very worth it. They do, however, clearly need serious training and clear boundaries as youngsters. An untrained and undisciplined 150 lb. dog is not easy to live with and is the reason so many adolescent Danes end up in rescue. BILL STEBBINS I began my involvement
with the Great Dane in the late 60s. My wife and I, pri- marily due to our good for- tune with having a wonder- ful mentor, had a lot of good fortune with our dogs. One of them was ranked #1 in the nation and several of them were in the Top 10. I began
judging in 1986. I currently am approved for the Working and Herding Groups and thoroughly enjoy the opportunities I have to be in the show ring. Later this year I will have the opportunity to judge our National for the second time. I also have had the privilege of judging dozens of Specialties. I was on the Board of the GDC of South Florida for approximately 25 years and was a member of the Ft. Lauderdale DC. I am currently a lifetime member of the Ann Arbor Kennel Club and was on the Board of Directors of the Great Dane Club of America. I was involved with Judges Ed for the GDCA for several years, have assisted in Breeder’s Ed and am the coordinator for the Breed Mentor program. I write a regular article for the only printed Dane magazine still in existence and occasionally have had articles in some of the all-breed magazines as well. I retired in 2012 and now have the ability to devote more time to an avocation which has become a vocation. I live in Port St. Lucie, Florida. I am now retired and, other than my activities related to dogs, I am on the Board of the HOA where I live. I have been in Danes for 50 years. I bred and showed until the time that I was approved to be a judge (1986). The people that historically have had consistent success are those that have had great mentoring from the begin-
been showing Great Danes for over 50 years. There are dogs of her breeding in the pedigrees of many of the top show dogs and producers here in the US and in many foreign countries. I live in Connecticut. I am just retired from 52 years in the Medical Laboratory field.
S HOW S IGHT M AGAZINE , M AY 2019 • 303
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