Top Notch Toys August 2018

with their warning big dogwoofs if something unusual occurs. They will respond in a different manner from one another to visual and audible stimuli. A group of them can be easily set off to howl if something prompts it, an activity sometimes re- ferred to by adoring owners as “singing.” Neighbors tend to call it something else. Once started, they aren’t easy to stop. There are those who say the ItalianGreyhound is low in intel- ligence, but very likely these people are confusing intelligence with trainability. I find IGs to be highly intelligent, although this varies considerably from dog to dog. Even the trainabil- ity level is quite good as long as the training is done with the proper mixture of positive reinforcement and firmness. I’ve often been asked, since we have lived with IGs for nearly 50 years, what are their most common personality traits. This is extremely difficult to answer, since there have been no two completely alike. I believe more than any other breed these dogs are truly individuals, which actually explains one of the factors of their irresistible charm. ABOUT THE AUTHOR: I acquired my first Italian Greyhound in 1966 and have lived with from one to 18 of this breed at any given time ever since. I have bred more than 70 AKC champions under my La Scala kennel name. Currently a dog of my breeding is the top Toy stud in Great Britain, and one of my dogs is behind many of the win- ning IGs in Brazil. In 1989 I was approved by the AKC to judge Italian Grey- hounds and have judged breed specialties in Italy and Austra- lia as well as several times in the United States, including the National Specialty in 2003 and 2010. I will be judging IGs in Japan in October along with the other Toy breeds for which I am approved. I have written four books about the Italian Greyhound, have been the IGbreed columnist for the AKCGazette since 1977 and frequently write articles for other dog magazines. I have served on the Judges’ Education Committee for the Italian Greyhound Club of America, was one of the creators of the Illustrated Stan- dard for the IG and am a past president of the IGCA. Currently I’m the president of the Kennel Club of Palm Springs. Most im- portantly, I absolutely adore this breed and can’t imagine living without at least one or two of them.

68 • T op N otch T oys , A ugust 2018

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