“THE DOG RING IS NO DIFFERENT THAN ANY OTHER FIELD OF COMPETITION. Success breeds jealousy, envy and downright hostility.”
into some minor controversy only to find themselves quoted the next day by a co-conspirator. Outside the ring, we’ve learned to avoid engagement in gossip about any- one. Besides, it’s amazing how much you learn just listening to someone run out of words and then divulging too much information. When people visit our kennel, we avoid comments about a fellow breeder even though we may know they may not be operating appro- priately. We can only control how we operate as a responsible kennel. It’s the AKC and breed club’s responsibility to put unethical breeders out of business, even though they will continue to breed no matter what. Remember the AKC only registers about one percent of all of the dogs in this country. For the other ninety-nine percent, anything goes! WELCOME TO THE BIG TOP! As a new or veteran dog enthusiast, understanding the world of dogs really is like a circus helps to put this world in perspective. Somebody wins, some- body loses, great champions are soon forgotten as new hot dogs knock them off their perch and we’re all off to the next show. The fact that some own- ers and kennels have consistent suc- cess is the thread that runs through the Big Top. Those owners/breeders have taken the time and resources to figure out the nuances of what appears to be chaos but is actually a highly orches- trated dance. Like any dance, it takes time to learn the steps and even more time to perform at the highest level. Enjoy the ride!
With our success came positive regard that was very gratifying. However… when you begin to win with your dog do not expect only love and adulation of your fellow breeders or the fancy. Human beings have a tendency to enjoy watching someone who has succeeded when they fail. Who did they think they are? The dog ring is no different than any other field of competition. Success breeds jealousy, envy and downright hostility. Because we don’t always win we have always tried to be gracious winners and losers. Watching a com- petitor stomp out of the ring is never fun to watch. We’ve talked a lot about developing goals and a strategy to achieve those goals. As with anything else in life stay- ing focused makes a huge difference. The distractions of those around you who resent your dog’s success can’t always be ignored but they can be used to remind you-you’re going in the right direction. Normally, doing the same thing over and over and expecting a different result is a definition of insan- ity. In dog competition, insane as it is, developing a consistent breeding and show program will produce success. Like the early Ford’s Aviator dogs come in many colors as long as it’s mostly black. It’s part of the brand. ARE YOU CLOSED-MOUTH? The flip side of having a thick skin is keeping your mouth shut. To say that dog shows breed gossip, innuendo and petty comments, as well as show dogs, is an understatement. We have learned to be even better listeners the more successful we have become. We’ve watched fellow breeders get sucked
THE TRUTH ABOUT DOG SHOWS! • With some people, you just don’t have a chance… • If you talk about dogs, you’re a know-it-all; if you don’t, you’re a snob… • If you don’t stop to chat at a show, success has gone to your head; if you do, you’re a show-off… • If your dogs are at all the shows, you’re not letting others have a chance; if your dogs aren’t at all the shows, you’re afraid of the competition… • If your dog wins, you know the judges; if they don’t win, you know nothing about breeding… • If you win and thank the judge, you’re playing politics; if you win and don’t thank the judge, you’re rude… • If you lose and congratulate the winner, you’re a hypocrite; if you lose and don’t thank the winner you’re a poor sport… • If you’ve been breeding for less than 20 years, you’re a novice; if you’ve been breeding for more than 20 years, you should step down and let the newcomers have a chance… • If you use your own stud, you’re kennel blind; if you go outside for stud services, you don’t thinkmuch of your own breeding… • If you sell most of your pup- pies, they aren’t good enough to keep; if you keep them, you can’t find buyers…
44 • T op N otch T oys , A ugust 2018
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