ShowSight Presents The Bearded Collie


of simply floating around the ring. The dog should be long and lean, 5:4 ratio, with the length of back coming from the rib cage and not the loin. The head is a distinc- tive feature of the breed; it should be in proportion to the body and equal in length from muzzle to stop and stop to occiput. Eye color must tone with the coat giving the dog that soft melting and enquiring expression. It is a medium-sized dog; the word “medium” appears throughout our standard. It should have a double coat, but it is the quality of the coat that is more important than the quantity. It is a naturally presented breed. Ultimately, I am looking for a well-constructed Bearded Collie that moves freely with the expression that melts your heart when looking into those beautiful eyes. We have a first class Illustrated Standard; on page six is the perfect Bearded Collie. If you have just one of those in your ring, you should be extremely happy. LR: Balance, athletic side gait with strong topline and happy and joyful personality. LS: They must have a long back and their length is through the rib cage with a short loin, never appearing square. They must have good shoulder layback with a long upper forearm and good bend of stifle to cover ground effort- lessly. They must have the hallmark of the breed— their beautiful, soft, melting expression. 3. Are there any traits in this breed you fear are becoming exaggerated? CA: Trimming, too much white or white in the wrong places (mismarks) and kick up in back legs (unbalanced dogs). IC: I find traits are cyclical. The biggest change I have witnessed over the years is the quality and quantity of coat. More Beardies are being presented with exception- ally long coats and not always of the correct texture. Fortunately, square Beardies with shorter muzzles, which seemed to be in fashion a few years back, have decreased. Some loins are tending to be over long. I also see far too many level bites. I know that it is accepted within the breed standard but it is a concern. The trimming of coats is something that handlers tend to

do more than the breeder/exhibitors, although breeder/ exhibitors have seen that by trimming they can win. Who is at fault? I blame not only those individuals who practice this, but the judges who place these dogs. Judges must read the standard and see this is a naturally presented and unspoilt breed. I was given a Group 2 placement recently and was told by the judge that if I had bothered to trim the dog we would have won the Group. We had a long discussion but I will never show to that judge again. I do not like to see dogs moved at breakneck speed and on tight leashes. The breed is supposed to be shown on a loose leash at all times. LR: I don’t think so; many long-time breeders are doing a good job. LS: I have been seeing a trend towards square dogs— no where in the Breed Standard does it say the Bearded Collie is square! Another thing I have also been seeing is some muzzles that are far too short— this is not correct for the breed. 4. Do you think the dogs you see in this breed are better now than they were when you first started judging? CA: No, not necessarily. More emphasis now on glamour (coat) and showing (attitude) than on correct dogs, but quality in general has improved as more breeders strive to improve their breeding programs. IC: I feel the breed is in good hands with our younger breeders. They have kept their eyes on the standard and in the main are producing good quality dogs for the show ring. They are more mindful of the herding qualities, with so many owners becoming more inter- ested in herding, agility and obedience. This is great for the breed. I have always felt Beardies are strong and over the years they have maintained that strength. There are always ups and downs but in general, apart from the coats, I see little change. LR: The entries are not as large as they were 15 years ago, but there are still many quality dogs. I did the Top 20

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