Showsight Presents The Akita

AKITAS: A JAPANESE TREASURE

ROBERT MOORE

overall. The area I feel is the most improved and a huge accomplishment for breeders has been temperaments. The difference is like night and day and one I am most proud of. 5. What do you think new judges misunderstand about the breed? I seems not only new judges, but a number of older, more experienced judges, today are misinterpreting the standard or have changed their viewpoint towards the standard. One must remember this breed was used to hunt bear and was, and still is, considered a large, pow- erful breed with much substance, heavy bone and not gender specific. Point being, many times when a larger, nice Akita enters the ring which consists of a number of smaller dogs, some judges fail to recognize correctness and make the statement he/she is just too much dog. This is very frustrating as a breeder and an exhibitor. This point cannot be stressed enough! 6. In your opinion, what is the difference between a good Akita and a great Akita? A great Akita has that added presence that just draws you to them. They handle themselves with precision like a skilled surgeon and move effortlessly with pride and confidence. They’re impressive, have a desire to be in the ring and know they’re special. The late judge, Sam Piz- zino, said, “A true, great dog special is the one that enters the ring moving like a stallion with confidence, head up, nostrils flared as if to say, all you bitches belong to me.” 7. And, for a bit of humor: What’s the funniest thing you’ve ever experienced at a dog show? A number of years ago at a show in Terre Haute, Indiana, I was talking with my good friend, the late Bill “THEY ARE A BREED LIKE NO OTHER; GIVING UNCONDITIONAL LOVE AND AFFECTION TO THEIR OWNERS.”

My wife, Chris Ann, and I live in the country near Fort Smith, Arkansas. Dogs have always been a large part of my life but since retiring, my life is the dogs. Besides my wife being a professional handler for the last 30 years, we also own a boarding and grooming facility. I became interested in the breed back in the mid 80s when I was attending a dinner par- ty and the host had this beautiful puppy running around. The more I interacted with the puppy, the more I was drawn to it. Unable to forget the puppy I found myself wanting to learn more about the breed. The love affair began and I have never looked back. I have been active in Akitas both breeding on a limited basis and showing over the past 33 years under the name, Shinto Akitas. During this time, I have been blessed to both own and breed a number of top winners including multiple generations of BISS winners. 1. Describe the breed in three words? Majestic, intelligent and loyal. They are a breed like no other; giving unconditional love and affection to their owners and, if need be, would lay down their life protect- ing the family they love. 2. What are your “must have” traits in this breed? There are numerous worth mentioning, but a few together that make this breed a total package. Several are in the first line of the standard: “Large, powerful, much substance and heavy bone.” In addition, a nice, broad head and a full, curled tail should balance the body. Without this overall package, you lose what the Akita should be. 3. Are there any traits in this breed you fear are becoming exaggerated? Several things come to mind but one of the most impor- tant is size. This is a large, powerful breed. Today we are seeing more Akitas smaller in size with less bone, sub- stance and incorrect narrow heads. Many Akitas being shown these days have more of a Siberian look with less bone and substance. 4. Do you think the dogs you see in this breed are bet- ter now than they were when you first started? Although there are some really nice dogs currently being shown, overall on average the dogs were better back then. It was just a more majestic, larger, powerful animal. I also believe, currently, bitches are better than the males

254 • S HOW S IGHT M AGAZINE , J UNE 2017

Powered by