Showsight Presents The Chinese Crested

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

There are still some breeders today with consistency in their breeding and you know it’s a Gingery dog (for example) when you see it but those kennels are becom- ing a thing of the past. People just can’t afford to keep the size kennels we once had. 7. What do you think new judges misunderstand about the breed? VD: Quite a few forget to first judge all of the Hairless then the Puffs separate in their minds before deciding which they prefer. A lot of judges still feel it is only a Hairless breed and forget the Puff is needed to help in more than the dental. The worse are those that won’t look at a true Hairless as they normally do not have the fancy furnishings. SH: Tail carriage! Tail carriage! Tail carriage! The tail should never come over and lay on the back! SK: I think most judges who are not breeder judges don’t realize the amount of body hair the Hairless variety really has. In the ring you see very few dogs who are truly Hair- less. Just like the amount of body hair that different men have, the Cresteds also come in varying amounts from very little to very profuse. According to the standard they are only to have hair on certain parts of the body and the body itself is not one of those areas. Some people are also showing the Powderpuff shaved down to look like a Hair- less. Most judges are unaware of this. DP: I don’t know if there is a particular misunderstanding but I do see many judges of our breed give little or no attention to movement. Our standard reads “the Hairless variety is not to be penalized for absence of full dentition” but my input to judges (and breeders); it is possible to have big pearly whites in a correct scissor or level bite! Strive for it. When judging I hear far too many exhibitors make com- ments when examining bites “oh he/she has a typical Hairless bite” as if that is an excuse to have numerous missing teeth. 8. Your opinion of the current quality of purebred dogs in general, and your breed in particular. PI: Right now many breeds have lost type, in my opin- ion—however Chinese Cresteds are in great shape. The breeders have really worked hard to get consistency and soundness. Grooming is still an issue for some. 9. The biggest concern you have about your breed, be it medical, structural, temperament-wise, or what. PI: I would like breeders and exhibitors to read the standard and groom accordingly—the crest tapers to the base if the neck, instead of leaving a shawl that makes a correct dog look too short bodied. Tail length is a common prob- lem—and curled is incorrect.

Same advice to new judges—watch breeder judges when possible. I learned correct movement from watching a breeder judge the sweepstakes at a National—by the time she was done, I understood what she was looking for. 12. Anything else you’d like to share—something you’ve learned as a breeder, exhibitor or judge or a par- ticular point you’d like to make. VD: I would like to see more breeding to get better move- ment and more breeders and owners showing their dogs in obedience, rally, barn and sent if they don’t have a show quality or after they have retired the dog from the show ring. Also getting their children into Jr. Handling. We need these entries as much as Conformation to keep the breed going. SH: There is a wide range of size on the breed. Often the smaller dogs tend to be square which is incorrect. If you find a true Hairless that is rectangular with a level top line and reach and driven reward it. Don’t put up the incorrect dog with more (flashy) furnishings. PI: The Chinese Crested standard says “When dog is in motion, the tail is carried gaily and may be carried slight- ly forward over the back. At rest the tail is down with a slight curve upward at the end resembling a sickle.” Also I stress when mentoring, the Crested is “a toy dog, fine- boned, elegant and graceful.” SK: This breed is very people oriented. Most would be content to lay in your lap all day long. It is interesting to watch the individual character traits that they possess. I had one that would run circles in the kitchen when using the ice machine in the refrigerator. Another would run to a tree in the backyard whenever you opened to door to make you think they were treeing a bird. I had one that had some infatuation with the lawn mower. All you had to do was go over and touch it and she would begin bark- ing and carrying on. They are quirky and fun! DP: The Chinese Crested is an awesome breed. Sweet, intel- ligent, loveable, devoted, easy to train, clean, friendly, outgoing—traits I hope breeders continue to strive for, for many years to come. 13. And for a bit of humor, what’s the funniest thing that you ever experienced at a dog show? VD: Hard to remember at my age but I can say that the clothes people wear to show in at the European/Brit- ain shows—in a Crested show one lady had spikes on the toes of her shoes (I have that picture) and couldn’t understand why her Hairless Crested didn’t want to stay close to her. PI: My sister was showing two Cresteds—her dog and my bitch. When she was getting the dog out of the crate, my bitch escaped. She looked around for a minute, noticed the dogs in the ring getting bait, and got in line, stacked herself and waited for one of us to catch up! She was quite a character! DP: Sitting in front of two exhibitors ringside who were dis- cussing what I like as a judge, not realizing I was sitting in front of them. It was priceless.

10. The biggest problem facing you as a breeder. PI: I cannot answer as I no longer breed Cresteds.

11. Advice to a new breeder? Advice to a new judge of your breed? PI: When you come into a breed, seek out information. There are long-time Crested breeders who can help.

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

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