Showsight Presents The Keeshond

k ees h ond

Q&A

making sure the dog’s feet never touched the ground. My ring was a small lake and it only took two or three steps by both dog and handler before the coats were soaking wet and the reddish mud coated both exhibitor and their charges. I wasn’t long until everyone was having a good laugh at this interesting situation. The weather was mis- erable, but the good humor lightened the mood. JOAN CZARNYSZKA BIO Born in Illinois, I lived in Michigan, California (thrice), Georgia, Indiana, Texas, and Arizona (twice), all before I was graduated from ASU in 1956. I was a school librarian for 31 years, and have been a bookkeeper for my veteri- narian for the past 27 years. I showed Kees locally, with occasional trips to NM and CA . Bred eight litters in 20 years, total of 40 puppies. Have been active on boards of local kennel clubs and two national Keeshond clubs, Keeshond Club of America and TAKS. I judge nine breeds, mostly Spitz-family breeds, plus two herding breeds. 1. Where do you live? What do you do “outside” of dogs? I live in Phoenix, Arizona. I play bridge, read, go to mov- ies and plays, and enjoy visiting with my son and grand- daughter. 2. How many years in dogs? I was given my first Keeshond in 1943, and showed him twice, but wasn’t “in dogs” until I got my second Kees- hond in 1969 and started showing him in 1970. Showed for about 25 years, and started judging in 1991. 3. Describe the Keeshond in three words: Devoted, intelligent, glamorous. 4. What to you is the ultimate hallmark of the breed? In appearance, the glorious coat. In character, its temperament: alert, smart, eager to please, easily train- able, adaptable, gentle with children, usually good with other pets. 5. Are there any traits in this breed you fear are becoming exaggerated? I’ve not noticed any that are prevalent or worrisome cur- rently. In the past there were some issues with too-short muzzles and bad bites, but these have improved. 6. Do you think the dogs you see in this breed are better now than they were when you first started judging? Why or why not? Yes, I think today’s dogs are better than 25 years ago. Then there were dogs that would still be winners today, but the depth of quality in classes was less than now. Color and markings have improved—fewer dogs with smudgy legs and feet, and more with correct dramatic coloring. Also, there are fewer dogs with light bone, more with moderate bone. 7. Your pet peeve in the show ring is…?

My pet peeve is handlers who move the dogs as if the fastest dog will win. 8. What advice would you give a novice exhibitor? Get to the show early enough to watch the judge in the ring, to see what pattern is being used to move dogs, Make sure your dog is clean, including teeth, and learn to groom by watching or by asking for help prior to show day. Attend handling classes if they are available in your area, so you how to present your dog to its best advantage and what is expected of you in the ring. Whether you win or lose, be a good sport. 11. What’s the funniest thing you’ve ever experienced at a dog show? At one of our national specialty shows, one exhibitor from the local club had been a clown in a parade just before ring time. With the judge’s permission, he showed his dog himself in his clown outfit, complete with huge two-foot long shoes. Hilarious! And looks he got from others’ dogs were just as funny. ARLENE GRIMES

1. Please tell us about your back- ground in Keeshonden, including kennel name, highlights, judging experience. My kennel name of ABC was chosen when a teenager to apply to a different breed of dog; it remained unused until I decided to give dog obedience classes in Davis; then it was most appropriate,

“The ABC School of Dog Obedience.” One of my students had a 4-year-old Keeshond bitch that needed a home; that’s how “Skoci” came to me. She eventually became the top obedience Kees in the US (unofficially) for at least one year and dam of “Gypsy Silver”. “Gypsy” scored sev- eral High Dog in Trial awards, was the only non-Sheltie on the Northern Team to compete in California’s North- South Obedience competition in Fresno (1974), and flew to Mexico City later that year to compete in their World Dog Show. She and a son, “Zev”, completed their Interna- tional Championships and she won Highest Scoring Dog at 3 of the 4 shows, setting an all new record-high aver- age score of 199 from the Novice Classes. After the first day of competition, we were invited to a party for the obedience exhibitors at the home of Senorita Premio De Lasalle. (She insisted that we all call her “Lassie”!) At our arrival, my husband and I were introduced as “Mr. and Mrs. Keeshond”! (We had the only Kees entered.) One of the Mexican judges had heard so many nice things about how well Gypsy had worked that she insisted that we notify her shortly before Gypsy’s next ring appear- ance, which we did. The lady judge stopped her judging and left her ring to watch Gypsy for herself! The other great compliment we received was that by the third day of competition, the majority of the other obedience exhibitors had picked up their pace in an effort to mimic

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