Collie Breed Magazine - Showsight

q&A collie

ROBETTE JOHNS I started going to dog shows in 1973. I was hooked after my very first show. I was lucky enough to attend the Collie Club of America National Specialty Show in Anaheim, CA in 1973. At 15 years old, I had found something that became my lifetime passion. I bred my first litter in 1977. Over the years my kennel, Row-Bar, has bred, co-bred and finished over 75 champions, smooth and rough Collies. My first top 10 Collie was in 1976, with the latest being 2013. I was lucky enough to have bred and owned Ch. Row-Bar’s Southern Exposure CD, the number 1 Smooth Collie in 1994. I was a professional handler for several years and became a judge in 1997. I cur- rently judge Collies, Shetland Sheepdogs, Pembroke Welsh Corgis, Australian Shepherds and all-breed Junior Showman- ship. The highlight so far in my judging career was judging Junior Showmanship at a Collie Club of America National Specialty Show. I am and have been very active in many dog clubs. I have been devoted to the Collie Health Foundation, Inc. for twen- ty years. I’m passionate about health issues for all purebred dogs. I am currently an American Kennel Club Delegate. I feel it is important to give back to a sport that has given me so much. I have been in the financial industry all of my life. I am currently a Financial Services Professional for New York Life Insurance Company. I reside in the high desert of Southern California with my husband, 6 Collies, 1 rescue and a Main Coon Cat. GAYLE KAYE

HILDY MORGAN I was given a Collie puppy by my par- ents for my 12th birthday, so I have been “owned” by Collies for over 60 years. I earned a CD on that dog after taking les- sons from Blanch Saunders, one of the early trainers, when obedience competi- tion was just beginning. I guess I must have impressed some of the members of the dog training club because when I was 14, I was hired by a couple who bred Springer Spaniels and Shetland Sheepdogs to work in their kennel on weekends and go to dog shows with them. My kennel name is Country-Aire, which was the name of the boarding kennel that I owned and managed for ten years. I also taught obedience classes there and developed a grooming business. In 1987 we opened a pet store and dog training center. My daughter was our manager, and I taught the handling classes and junior showmanship program. We had five trainers teaching obedience and puppy classes. We did not sell puppies and kittens, but did sell small pets like rabbits, guinea pigs, hamsters, etc. We offered a wide array of pet and show supplies, and also cat boarding and dog and cat grooming. I began my judging career with Col- lies and all-breed juniors in 2000, following up with Shelties and then Australian Shepherds and Cattle Dogs. I now judge 12 Herding breeds and five Non-Sporting breeds. Because I also owned Bichons and handled them, I grew fond of sev- eral Non-Sporting breeds as well as the Herding breeds with which I started. So moving into the non-sporting group came naturally. I believe judges should like and feel comfortable with the breeds which they judge. Northern Colorado has been my home since 1979, and I don’t plan on moving any- where else. I have easy access to open space and livestock for training my dogs in tracking and herding. Those are the two performance areas I love the most. Two hobbies I enjoy out- side of dogs are genealogy research and bird-watching. MARTHA RAMER I began in Collies in 1971. My husband bought me my first dog. I had grown up with cats since we didn’t have a fenced yard, so I couldn’t wait to get a dog of my own. Of course I had the Lassie crush like most people growing up in the 50s and 60s. My first Collie was without papers and unfortunately passed away at 7 months of age from a kidney problem. My second Collie was the stud owners ‘pick of the litter’. So she asked if I was interested in showing. I went to an all-breed puppy match and my boy won Best of Breed over 35 Collie pups. That was it—I was bit by the bug. This boy would go on to get all his minor points and 6 major reserves, but never fin- ished his championship. I tried a bitch from another breeder that had more success, she did get a major but also never fin- ished. I then approached a kennel that had bred lot of top win- ners on the west coast and was very successful at specialties.

My first time in the show ring and my first litter both came in 1970. I have been breeding since then using the “Chelsea” prefix. I started with two family-related bitches and have gone onto finish multiple generations of specialty winning champions! A recent Bred-By champion bitch is 13 generations Chelsea breeding (in mul- tiple directions) and traces 15 times to

one foundation bitch and 9 times to the other one. I applied for my judging license in 2004. I have judged a lot of spe- cialties nationwide, but my crowning moment came in 2013 when I was asked to judge Breed and Intersex at the Collie Club of America National Specialty. No greater honor can be bestowed upon a judge! I live on 3 acres in a very rural area in Northern San Diego County. My life is very involved with the dogs. Between caring for the dogs, breeding, showing, writing and club work it leaves me little time for other outside activities, but I wouldn’t have it any other way! I am an award winning author of two books on the Collie and have written hundreds of articles over the years. I am cur- rently first Vice President of the Collie Club of America and Co-Chair the club’s Judge’s Education Committee. I also serve on the Board for the Collie Health Foundation.

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