Shih Tzu Breed Magazine - Showsight


COLOR & MARKINGS Parti-colored, solid any color, black and white or having a dark face is of no importance, as all colors and markings are equal. All colors and markings are acceptable and equal. It is more di ffi cult to judge dark-faced or solid-colored dogs because the breed’s facial characteristics do not “pop out at you.” Th is is why a careful, up close examination (on the table) is so important. Th ere are no o ffi - cial records kept for the all-time top-winning parti-colored, black masked gold or solid black Shih Tzu. Resist the temptation to have a color preference; to prefer black and white, solid black or black masked gold dogs. Do not be turned o ff by a mismarked beard (black on one side and white on the other). Th ere are breeders who prefer certain colors or markings but, as a judge, you must treat all colors and markings as acceptable and equal. A word about the colors blue and liver: Th ey are acceptable according to the standard. However, Shih Tzu with these colors frequently also have lighter eyes; though not always. Th is creates a problem in that it is more di ffi cult to get soft, warm expression from a lighter eye. Liver pig- ment is seldom seen in the ring and blue is a real rarity. MOVEMENT Th e last component of type, Shih Tzu movement should be the same as for any soundly moving dog. Th e head should be carried high. Th e standard refers to a “distinctly arrogant carriage.” Th ere is absolutely no mention in the standard about length of neck. Th e standard requires that the Shih Tzu have arrogant carriage. In order for a Shih Tzu to carry its head high (without being “strung up”),

Correct Shih Tzu Movement: Distinctly arrogant carriage, level topline, good reach and drive.

it must have good shoulder layback. Moving away from you, you should see two black pads. Th e Shih Tzu should cover ground, but is not to be raced. Th e standard states, “ Th e Shih Tzu moves straight and must be shown at its own natural speed, neither raced nor strung-up.” Enough tension on the lead to guide the Shih Tzu is appropriate. A dead loose lead is not necessary. However, please dis- courage exhibitors from stringing up their dogs. When I see abuse in this area, I usually ask the exhibitor to “move your dog again, this time slower and please let up on the lead.”


My wife Bobbi and I began exhibiting Shih Tzu under the Shen Wah prefix in the early 1970s. To date, we have owned, bred or finished almost 100 champions. We have had many Toy Group and Specialty-winning Shih Tzu as well as three all-breed BIS winners. Our biggest pleasure was breeder/ owner-handling our home-bred BIS, BISS Ch. Shen Wah’s Turn It Loose to an all-breed BIS. Our Shih Tzu, BIS BISS Ch. Hallmark Jolei Austin Powers, won the ASTC National Specialty twice. In 2010, he was the number two Toy Dog in the US. We have also bred and shown Specialty-winning Chihuahuas and have shown Pugs and Maltese. We are still breeding and showing Shih Tzu. I am approved to judge the Hound, Terrier, Toy and Non-Sporting Groups, six Sporting and four Working breeds, and Best in Show. We have been members of the American Shih Tzu Club since 1977. I served two terms as President of the American Shih Tzu Club. I have held several offices in the ASTC and was the first AKC Judges Education Chairman. I have been a member of the ASTC judge’s education committee for more than 20 years. I served on the breed standard revision committee of 1989 and also was one of three members of The Illustrated Guide to the Shih Tzu Standard committee.

I have given seminars concerning Shih Tzu and Chinese/Tibetan breeds in every corner of the US as well as Australia and Europe. I began judging in 1987. I have judged the American Shih Tzu Club National Specialty twice. The Canadian Shih Tzu Club National, the Dutch Shih Tzu Club National, and Shih Tzu Specialties in Japan and Sweden. I have judged Hound, Terrier, Toy and Non-Sporting Group shows in the US and abroad. I have judged Specialty Shows for breeds in most of the Toy, Non-Sporting, Terrier and Hound Groups in the US, including the Chihuahua Club of America National Specialty Show. I have also judged the Tibetan Terrier Club of America National Specialty, the Lhasa Apso Club of America National Specialty, and the Chinese Shar Pei Club of America National Specialty. I’ve also judged the American Foxhound National Specialty. I have judged at the Westminster KC and The AKC/ Eukanuba National Championship shows. I have judged in Australia, Canada, China, Japan, Mexico, The Netherlands, Norway, and Sweden. I have authored numerous articles on Shih Tzu, published in “Top Notch Toys” (TNT), the ASTC Bulletin, “Dogs in Review” and the “Shih Tzu Reporter”. I served on the Board of Directors of the Dog Judges Association

of America for six years and served as their annual seminar chairman for several years. I was also the Toy and Non-Sporting Group education coordinator of the Los Angeles Area Dog Judges Educational Association. I was for many years Show Chairman of the Santa Ana Valley Kennel Club and was a board member and am a past president of the Toy Dog Fanciers of Southern California. I have been the featured speaker at the annual Canadian Kennel Club Judges Conference. We now reside in Chapel Hill, North Carolina. Professionally, I hold an MA in Educational Administration and a BA in German. I studied at the University of Heidelberg, Germany, in 1965 and ‘66. For 35 years I was a high school teacher, having retired in 2002. I taught German, English, and Art and Music History. I served for more than 30 years as Chairman of the Foreign Language Department.


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