Showsight July 2020


Belgian Tervuren. They are very happy to have so much room to run like wild beasts. It took them a little while to adjust from “city” noise to “country” noise (turkeys, deer, coyotes, etc.). Other than judging and showing dogs, I enjoy reading, swim- ming (consequently, all my own dogs learn to swim). Currently, we are renovating the family homestead and restoring the aged land- scape. By the time this publishes, I’ll be retired. Fooling around with recipes and plotting out a garden for next year are next up on the agenda. How many years have I been involved in dogs and as a breeder? I always say I’ve been involved for life. Quite frankly, I don’t remem- ber ever not participating in some sort of dog sports since I was a youngster. I bred my first litter when I was 17 and truly love mixing, matching and researching pedigrees and dogs. It’s an education, always. I do enjoy following successful breeders in other breeds as well as watching where they take their lines. Many times following a judging assignment, I may go look up a pedigree of a dog I liked to see where and how it came to be so nice. Do I compete in conformation, companion or performance events? I still like to compete and believe all judges should keep some hand in the competitive end of it, especially if they stopped breeding and are still physically able. My current dogs are all young (except the 15-year-old) and I believe in cross-training to keep them mentally and physically fit. It provides direction and control from just playing, running and swimming, which they do plenty. Currently, I’m showing in conformation, and training in the companion and performance events. I do frequently use a younger handler for specialing in conformation at the all-breed shows, but I enjoy very much showing in the classes myself and at specialties as well as at the companion/performance events. Is my breed still capable of performing its original function? Absolutely. We have a very active membership that competes in multiple disciplines and particularly herding on all levels. Can I define the key essentials of “type” in my breed? When all the pieces fit, there is nothing more beautiful than my breed stand- ing proudly, squarely with its beautiful, rich color, elegantly watch- ing over its domain or people. While the breed is not specifically a “head breed,” much of its beauty can be found in its confident, alert expression. Almond-shaped, correctly placed eyes enhance the look. Finally, type is not stationary—it is quite fluid. Sound movement is essential in a Herding breed. While we can forgive, as we must as breeders or judges—elegance, movement and rich color as defined by the standard are key essentials in our breed. When you have found the dog that can hold its beauty and soundness standing and moving, well, you have found a dog to reward highly. Am I pleased with my breed’s current overall quality and popu- larity? Yes and no. The breed has improved in terms of its body- shape. We have less rectangular dogs than in previous times. We have, however, lost some elegance in that quest, with fewer dogs that have harmonious lines. There is some misunderstanding amongst breeders (in my opinion only) on what good angulation is, movement in a square breed, and what our heads should look like. The interpretation of moderate is wildly interpreted. How challenging has it been for exhibitors to find “majors?” I don’t think it has been particularly difficult. In the Northeast, we have several shows per quarter with majors. There are generally fewer of the breed shown on a weekend-to-weekend basis overall. Is there a market for “pet quality” puppies in my breed? Yes. There is a robust market for pet quality puppies. Those homes aren’t always necessarily well-suited to the breed. Our breeders have very high standards in terms of requiring new owners to be involved in some type of activity with them. One thing for certain, this is not a lay by the fireplace and do nothing kind of breed. Who were my mentors? My family, of course, and I would consider the dog showing/breeding community-at-large a >

Is there a market for “pet quality” puppies in my breed? I cannot speak for other breeders, but for KayCee and I, we usually have a waiting list for puppies. We only produce one to two litters per year and we are fortunate to have wonderful homes waiting for our pup- pies long before they are even born. Who were my mentors? I have been fortunate over the years to have many wonderful, smart breeders mentor me, but my original mentor in the breed was Mary Lopez of Mon Jovis Briards. I think the one thing I took away from the many years we worked together is to stand in my own convictions. She taught me to make decisions based on what I believe was right for my own breeding program and not to worry about what others might think. That is very hard to do even to this day. I am also very fortunate to have a dear friend, Terry Miller of Deja Vu Briards, to call not only my friend, but to call on when I need advice or just want to talk dogs. She has been a wealth of knowledge over the years and I respect and admire her work in our breed. Ann Kennedy of Clarion Poodles, Dominique Dube of Popsakadoo Briards, Meg Weitz of de Beaujean Briards—so many wonderful people who have been there for me over the years. I am truly fortunate to have so many years of knowledge available to me. What is it about my breed that has sustained my interest and encouraged my involvement in the sport? Briards are like no other dog I have ever been around. They have amazing intuition, a goofy sense of humor and their sense of loyalty is remarkable. Their sheer beauty also attracts me to the breed. I cannot imagine life without this amazing breed. Over the years I have met so many wonderful people in the dog world, so showing the Briards has become a pas- sion for me, something I now enjoy with my daughter, KayCee, who has become an integral part of Mon Amie. JANINA LAURIN Janina Laurin is an AKC

judge of BIS, the Herding Group and multiple Work- ing breeds, and a second gen- eration dog fancier. She has judged the national specialties of all three Belgian breeds and Newfoundlands. She has been honored to judge the breed

twice at Westminster, at the AKC show, and will be judging the AKC/Royal Canin Bred-by Group 2020. Janina will also be judg- ing the Tervuren national for the fourth time in 2021. In October 2020, she will be judging the first Belgian Lakenois national. In 2002, Janina accepted the inaugural AKC Herding Breeder of the Year award on behalf of Chateau Blanc Kennels (Edeltraud, Janina and Darlene). Chateau Blanc has produced over 250 champions, Best in Show, National Specialty and Specialty winners, Dual champions, herding and tracking champions, multiple HIT win- ners in all performance events in the States and Canada, includ- ing Schutzhund events, on a limited breeding program. Janina and her sister are actively showing in conformation, herding, obedience and tracking with their current dogs and continuing to breed Bel- gian Tervuren. She has served as the parent club’s AKC Delegate for over 20 years, Showchair/Co-Chair Putnam Kennel Club, founding member and past President Berkshire Belgian Tevuren Club, past President of the American Belgian Tervuren Club, and member of Saw Mill Kennel Club. Janina is a founding member of the parent club’s Education Committee and has served on it since the mid-1980s. I live in a sleepy little town in Connecticut. My hometown road has not changed substantially in 50 years. The “newcomers” on the road have been here 20 years. We recently moved back to the country from our city/suburban home of 38 years. My breed is the


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