Showsight July 2020


titled dogs in conformation (Group wins and SS wins), obedience (all levels) and hunt tests to SH level. I have edited a book on Chesa- peake Bay Retrievers, written on the breed and have given numer- ous seminars here and abroad. I have judged Chesapeake National Specialties in the US, England and Sweden. I have judged the breed in Ireland, Denmark, Czech Republic and Switzerland as well. I am approved for all Sporting breeds with the AKC. For the American Chesapeake Club I have served in numerous positions; Historian, Club Secretary, Chair of Judges Education, Judges Education Coor- dinator, and AKC Delegate. In 2018, I was honored with a Lifetime Achievement Award by the club. I am retired and live in central Pennsylvania on 31 acres that includes a pond for the dogs. 2020 is my 43rd year involved with the Chesapeake and dog competition. Do I have any hobbies or interests apart from breeding and showing dogs? I have a large garden—flowers and shrubs—and spend a fair amount of time in it. I also enjoy traveling in the US and abroad. What’s it like living/working with a Chesapeake Bay Retriever? Living with a Chesapeake you are well loved, with a golden eye always keeping you in sight. You are never alone. They are intel- ligent dogs and learn quickly, but bore easily too. You need to be an innovative trainer. Can I speak to the breed’s size and substance? The Chesapeake has a larger size range than the other retriever breeds (21" minimum female; 26" maximum male). This wide size spread is due to the various settings the Chesapeake works in: boats, ponds, large bays and swift big rivers. How does the breed’s silhouette differ from that of its Retriever cousins? The breed has a distinctive underline in comparison to the other Retrievers. There should be an apparent tuck-up in the loin area from underneath. None of the other Retrievers have this obvious tuck-up. They also have two acceptable toplines: level (as high as shoulder) or slight rise to the rear in a steady line from the withers. Unlike several of the other Retrievers, they do not have a prominent projection of the fore-chest bone. It is not a requirement in the standard at all. The legs should be well-placed under the body by correct, sloping shoulders. Can I describe the Chessie’s ideal expression and coat? There is not an ideal expression or coat for the breed. There are a number of coat styles that are equally acceptable—some with more wave than others. The coat must have undercoat that is thick and a somewhat harsh outer coat. There also is a slight oily feel to the coat. Expres- sion is best seen when the dog is working in the field: intensity, alertness and determination. In an everyday setting they look bright and intelligent and aware of all that is going on around them. Do judges ever betray a preference for color? Sadly, yes. A color preference is not uncommon with judges. Brown is often favored over the sedge (red) and deadgrass (blonde) colors even if the brown is not the same quality. Breeders too can have a preference (brown), but that is not as common as it once was. Most breeders have dogs in all of the color range. Any words about this Retriever’s temperament? They are well- tempered dogs, very devoted to their family. Sensible dogs and usu- ally easy to live with—calm indoors. However, they have a watch dog nature too. As young dogs they must be socialized, trained in obedience, and the owner needs to be in charge. They need to be prepared for the conformation ring. If not, they can be reluctant to be examined and even shy away. Aggression should not be tolerated under any circumstance. The AKC standard has seven disqualifications. Care to elabo- rate? Sometimes judges misunderstand the DQ for a tendency to curl all over the body. There may be areas of the coat with a ten- dency to curl. To be disqualified the tendency must occur all over

the body. A few areas of the coat with a curling tendency is not a disqualification. Are there any well-kept secrets about the Chesapeake Bay Retriever? The breed is a very loving and devoted companion. You may never be loved by anything as much as your Chesapeake loves you. They often become part of you. Are there any current “trends” in breeding that should be con- tinued or should be stopped? There has been a trend toward over- angulation in the rear—legs too far back of the dog—and an overly prominent forechest. All those angles fore and aft make a “fancy” dog that is not correct Chesapeake type. The breed is a workman- like dog with moderation and balance. The rear has a well bent stifle, coupled with a medium hock length, creating a broad second thigh. The rear legs should not extend back much farther than the point of the buttock. JOANN COLVIN I began in dogs in 1976

and Chesapeakes in 1982. In 1990, I added Pekingese to my household and also showed and bred them. I have had numerous champions in both breeds, and multiple Group Placements, RBIS, and BIS Chesapeakes under the Cal-I- Co kennel prefix. I began judging in 1998

and judge the Sporting Group, three Toy breeds, Jrs, Misc, and BIS. I am past President of the American Chesapeake Club as well as VP, Board Member, JBEC Chair and Show Committee. I am current VP of my all-breed club, Kanadasaga KC, and I co-chair our show at the Wine Country Circuit in New York. I am an approved men- tor for the American Chesapeake Club. Even though I had thought to downsize on dogs, I discovered I still enjoyed breeding and having my dogs shown. So I have several Chesapeakes at home and share my bed with two Tibetan Spaniels and a very special Chihuahua. I live in the Finger Lakes region of New York. Currently, I am retired from teaching English. I’ve been in dogs about 38 years. Do I have any hobbies or interests apart from breeding and showing dogs? I am a certified End of Life Doula and spend many volunteer hours every week caretaking for hospice patients in our local Care Home. What’s it like living/working with a Chesapeake Bay Retriever? It is much like teaching school. Chesapeakes need to understand what is being asked and why. Each [dog] of the breed is an indi- vidual—no two [are] alike. Can I speak to the breed’s size and substance? The breed is moderate. Top of the standard for a male is 26". The weight and bone and substance of the dog should balance with its height. Many people call looking for the “old type” 100-plus pound dog. This was not characteristic and is out of standard. How does the breed’s silhouette differ from that of its Retriever cousins? The Chesapeake has a unique outline. The topline may be level, but may also rise slightly to the rear. This does not read as sway or dip in the back. The underline of the breed differs as there is a distinct tuck up under the loin. Can I describe the Chessie’s ideal expression and coat? A Chesa- peake should have an alert, intelligent expression. Although they can be aloof, many display a happy expression and some even smile. The coat has a variety of waving patterns, none preferred. >


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