airedale terrier Q&A
that picture firmly in my mind’s eye. Coat: Coats come and go, but the structure beneath never changes. On a major Terrier weekend and two wonderful dogs come together, the better coat well trimmed will have advan- tage over a coat not in condition. Judging Terrier breeds four or six weeks ahead of a major Terrier weekend I am always aware that the coat is not timed for me, it’s timed for the big weekend. Side Gait: For me? Very important. I have a great deal of difficulty pointing to a dog that can’t cover ground efficiently and effortlessly. There is very little reason for a dog to come and go flawlessly if he can’t also cover the ground well as viewed from the side.
Terriers at a disadvantage. Dogs gait, they don’t just walk, and how efficiently they move as viewed from the three sides, coming, going and from the side, is important. 5. Are there any traits in this breed you fear are becoming exaggerated? AB: No. But I think there are a couple of things that are problems. There are too many dogs that are low on leg and too many long backs. JT: No. 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? AB: All breeds go in peaks and valleys. I don’t think the breed is in great shape right now; it was much better the last couple of years. I’m sure we will see it swing the other direction in due time. JT: No, but when you look at pictures from other decades I believe they are overall better. A great dog from the 50s would be a great dog today, but an average dog today would be better. 7. What is the greatest challenge in judging the Airedale? PBM: Having such small entries so the choices are limited. “A GREAT DOG FROM THE 50S WOULD BE A GREAT DOG TODAY, BUT AN AVERAGE DOG TODAY WOULD BE BETTER.”
2. Describe the breed in three words. AB: Sturdy, elegant and intense. JT: Loyal, protective and smart.
3. What are your “must have” traits in this breed? AB: Beautiful head and expression, level short back and proper silhouette. JT: Attitude and movement. 4. Do you have any pet peeves in the Terrier ring? PBM: My pet peeves are moving the dogs too fast and improper trimming. I don’t want to see any scissor marks or clipped necks and rears! KM: There are several things. Bait, bait, bait, bait has gone way too far. Show me a good dog, in top shape, properly balanced that is looking out to the distance to something that has caught its attention and I have a much better picture than one standing like a cow watching the bait in your hand. It’s insulting to the Airedale! A related issue that I don’t understand is the exhibitor shoving a huge piece of bait into the dog’s mouth just when I am going to want to see the bite. Think about it. Also, listen to what I say or watch what the person in front of you was asked to do. Almost without exception you will be doing the same routine. BAS: First and foremost, the excessive use of coloring. Dogs seldom come in the colors that some exhibitors paint their dogs. Nothing comes off in your hands, but any dog person can tell whether a color is natural or not. I remember many years ago Dan Kiedrowski, founder and then editor of Terrier Type Magazine , told me how beau- tiful my Dandie bitch looked in the group at the Garden but he didn’t approve of the color. I was offended as she was not colored so I pulled a hunk of hair from her coat and mailed it to him, she was a blue black by birth. He’s still laughing about that! Secondly, only in the Terrier world do you hear the comment, “He’s a good walker” or “He isn’t a good walker.” I think this way of thinking puts
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