Showsight Presents The Chinese Crested

chinese crested Q&A WITH VIRGINA DORRIS, SHELLEY HENNESSY, PENELOPE “PENNY” INAN, STEVE KELLY AND DIEDRE PETRIE

equally as the Hairless. I think more confusion exists with the description of Powderpuff coats as well as loca- tion and type of furnishings on the Hairless. 4. Do you have a preference for one coat type over the other, out of the show ring? VD: Out of the show ring—Puffs by far but in the ring the Hairless do better. SH: No, I love both coats. PI: The look is indeed very different. Due to personal allergies, I have never been able to live with a Powderpuff—but wish I could. They are beautiful in full coat and some grooming options are truly adorable! SK: My first Crested was a Puff (because it looked like an Afghan). I have owned, bred and finished many of both varieties, so for me there is no preference. There are some judges who do prefer one over the other and you soon learn who they are. DP: In the show ring, absolutely zero preference. Outside the show ring, let’s just say I had a reputation of “if you want a good Powderpuff go to Deirdre, she never keeps her Puffs no matter how good they are”. I swore after Afghans I’d never pick up another pin brush and I haven’t! 5. Are there any traits in this breed you fear are becoming exaggerated? VD: Actually I’ve seen more coming closer to the standard than when I first started showing and breeding but some still putting fancy furnishings over the actual standard. SH: Yes this ridiculous practice if shaving a “V” down the neck and chest, to the skin, on the Powderpuffs. The standard very clearly says grooming on the PP is mini- mal! This look is ugly and ruins the look of a beautiful Powderpuff coat! SK: Oh yeah. Grooming is over the top. On the Puffs you are seeing necks shaved way down the front and chest and feet being trimmed like a Cocker. Top knots are being ratted up and sprayed. The shawls that grow down the back of the Hairless is also another grooming problem. All of these grooming exaggerations really detract from the overall appearance of the dog and do them no justice. This is all in opposition to the standard also which states “minimal grooming”.

DP: The amount of body hair on some Hairless has always been a factor in the breed but the exaggerated trimming has not. I don’t understand exhibitors who are leaving body hair on the shoulders to make this long mane over the shoulders, it looks ridiculous and is not correct. Also shaving V’s down the front to accentuate the neck on Puffs, at least I think that is what exhibitors are doing; again, to me wrong! And the amount of coat on some Puffs is way over the top. The true Hairless is few and far between and the correct Puff coat is nearly a thing of the past, sadly. 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? VD: I’m seeing better heads and top lines than when I first started in the breed. I believe the breeders are paying more attention to blood lines and going out to better stud dogs to help improve what their bitch may be lacking versus breeding to whoever is winning at the time. SH: Definitely better. In the early days many had hackneyed movement. You rarely see this anymore. SK: Some areas have improved and some have gotten worse. Top lines are much improved over what they were years ago. The hackney movement that you used to see a lot has become less. On the other side, the curled tails are becoming worse and more prevalent and there are many more square dogs. The standard calls for a slightly longer dog and a tail with a slight curve resembling a sickle. The increasing size is also becoming worse. Because the standard is not specific but states “may be slightly larger or smaller” leads to too much interpretation. The amount of body hair on the Hairless is also a bigger problem now. DP: I do believe the breed has improved greatly over the years, especially the early years of breed recognition. The one big concern I have for the breed, and I don’t think this is exclusive to the Chinese Crested, is the lack of true breeding kennels producing a consistent bloodline, with a consistent look. In my own breeding program, I had a set “look” meaning you could look at a group of Cresteds in the ring and know which ones are Makara dogs. Same applies to Whispering Lane, Gipez, Sun-A-Ra, Razzmatazz and many others—I mention these kennels in particular because they are either totally gone or nearly so.

“I BELIEVE THE BREEDERS ARE PAYING MORE ATTENTION TO BLOOD LINES AND GOING OUT TO BETTER STUD DOGS TO HELP IMPROVE WHAT THEIR BITCH MAY BE LACKING VERSUS BREEDING TO WHOEVER IS WINNING AT THE TIME.”

280 • S HOW S IGHT M AGAZINE , A UGUST 2018

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