JUDGING THE 2018 JAPANESE CHIN NATIONAL SPECIALTY by C. Michael Benson
I t was my great pleasure to have the opportunity to judge the national specialty for the Japanese Chin Club of America a second time. Dur- ing my 40 year involvement with the breed I have attended many Japanese Chin specialties, most of them as an exhibitor and often as an owner han- dler, and have seen the breed progress and regress. The national specialty is an event that combines competition, camaraderie, seeing old friends (and making new ones). It is also an event meant to gauge the condition of breed by viewing a small portion of the pop- ulation representing diverse areas of the U.S. and Canada. My thanks to all who entered dogs and to the handlers who brought them into my ring and to the club for providing the festive venue. For the most part my entry combined type and soundness on the same dogs. Most of the dogs moved well and temperaments were solid. Faces and heads, the hallmark of the breed,
affects the top lines. Most entries were well balanced and square ap- pearing and most moved freely with- out encumbrance. All entries were pleasingly marked and were in the colors described in our standard. Coats were correct but with a few that may be problematic down the road. In the classes there were several that will finish, probably with ease, and maybe finished already. I particularly liked the veterans and I want to note 40 years ago and even less a lot of our dogs did not make it much past eight. We are well past heart issues gener- ally now and it is nice to see older entries in the ring. The junior show- men were very competitive and the decision between the two was a diffi- cult one. Both deserve our praise and congratulations for doing a great job. I especially enjoyed the Best of Breed class. Lots of very fine exhibits in a line up that included all breed bests and specialty winners. You eventually run out of ribbons.
throughout were what one would ex- pect to see in an entry deep in qual- ity. Many of the entry had the correct head proportions showing proper eye size and placement, proper loca- tion and tilt of the nose, proper bite and nice wide muzzles. Ear sets were very good and most top skulls had the right amount of curve ear to ear. The Chin face and expression must be seen and evaluated from straight on. Those who free bait their dogs from a standing position should be cau- tioned not to have them looking up. The head should remain level looking straight ahead. There is often a fine line between what is acceptable structurally and what would be too course or too fine. There were a very small number of entries that were a bit course for me and some, mostly in the younger dogs that need to be a bit more (chest, rib spring). There were a few low tail sets with rear angulation to match which also
“THE NATIONAL SPECIALTY IS AN EVENT THAT combines competition, camaraderie, seeing old friends (and making new ones).”
46 • T op N otch T oys , A ugust 2018
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