2. In order, name the five most important traits you look for in the ring. I am not a judge, but for me it is about correct size—an important part of our standard is that they fit into a square, correct divergent head planes, correct coat and movement. Those, to me, are the pillars of our standard. 3. What shortcomings are you most willing to forgive? What faults do you find hard to overlook? Given the fact that our breed is meant to be a muscular hunter, gait and movement as related to structure are incredibly important. 4. Has the breed improved from when you started judging? Which traits are going in the wrong direction or becoming exaggerated? We need to be cautious to stay within the height and length of the standard, bigger is not always better. We ultimately want sound, healthy dogs. In addition, the head is the centerpiece and should be taken in strong consideration for breeding. 5. Are there aspects of the breed not in the standard
The fact that a Spinone’s topline is actually two segments is unique. The fact that a Spinone’s topline is actually two segments is unique. Their topline should not be flat or too excessive of curving. 7. Describe ideal Spinone movement. The movement of the Spinone can be such a beautiful thing to watch, absolute poetry in motion. The Spinone trot is so unique in Sporting dogs and really shows the special characteristics of their movement, allowing them to glide or fly around the ring at a moderate pace. 8. What are the misconceptions by judges unfamiliar with the breed? I think the biggest challenge is our standard is very detailed and has quite a few nuances that are not as common. Continued education and openness to hearing about details of the standard is so important. We have only been AKC recognized for 15 years, so it is important to expose and educate more and more judges. 9. Describe the Spinone coat and the importance of grooming. The Spinone coat is a wiry single coat. Long or soft coats are faults. The topic of grooming is very important since Spinone coats are to be shown in their natural state. This means they are not supposed to be cut or scissored since their coat is not to be altered in this way. The upside is easy grooming! Brushing them out and maybe a quick drying of the beard before going in the ring is all they need. Many handlers love this, they will certainly be their lowest maintenance client! 10. During examination, what can judges do differently? I think one challenge is less around the judges per say but more around ring size at certain shows. Since move- ment and the trot are important, judges negotiating the ring to the exhibitors best advantage makes a difference. 11. Do you have anything else to share? I feel blessed to have gotten to know and love this breed. They are truly special and so different than any other breed I have experienced. They have a distinct ability to connect with their people and have an unmatched intuitiveness. They truly own a piece of your heart. You will find yourself with an unmatched soulful connection to Spinone. I am passionate about their physical and emotional beauty and I am thrilled to be part of this amazing breed.
that you nonetheless take into consideration because breeders consider them important?
It is actually listed in our standard but expression is so, so important to get at the heart of this breed. Their eyes should look into you, human eyes with the females look- ing feminine and males masculine. 6. Describe the Spinone topline and its difference from other Sporting dogs. “they have a distinct ability to connect with their people and have an unmatched intuitiveness. THEY TRULY OWN A PIECE OF YOUR HEART.”
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