BREEDING WITH INTENTION
Cocker Spaniel (American) , English Springer Spaniel, Field Spaniel, Sussex Spaniel, Welsh Springer Spaniel, and the Nederlandse Kooi- kerhondje. Group 8, Section 3, Water Dogs, is comprised of the American Water Span- iel, Barbet (French Water Dog), Irish Water Spaniel, and the Lagotto Romagnolo. There are five retrieving water dog breeds recognized by the FCI in Group 8, Section 3 (Retrievers, Water Dogs), of which four are AKC registered. These four breeds are the subject of this installment in the series. The one breed not being discussed is the Spanish Water Dog, as it falls into the AKC Herding Group. The Barbet, also known as the French Water Dog, is known for being a waterfowl flusher and retriever in the marshes and wet- lands of France. Its name, “Barbet,” was once applied to any dog that worked and had a long, curly, wooly coat. A Barbet-like dog could be found in France, Italy, and Ger- many as far back as the late 18th and early 19th century, and literature describes a simi- lar looking dog in the 16th century. For a period of almost a hundred years, from the late 1700s to the early 1800s, Barbets and Poodles (Pudel) were thought to be the same breed. The Barbet retains the coat qualities that protect it from the wet and cold of the hunting season. World Wars I and II had a devasting effect on the breed and, today, the breed numbers in the range of 1,500 to 2,000 worldwide. There are pockets of hunters dedicated to hunting with this breed, primarily in France and the surrounding countries. In its native France, the Barbet can take a basic water- retrieving test, Test d’Aptitudes Naturelles (TAN) , which tests its retrieving aptitude, and it can also participate in a general hunt- ing dog test that involves field and water tri- als, Brevet de Chasse a l’Eau (BCE) . The breed gained full AKC approval for the Sporting Group in 2020. The breed appears in French expositions of the late 1800s in classes for “ Griffons d’Arret et Bar- bets de Touts Pays ” (Pointing Griffons and Barbets from all Countries). There are few archival photographs of early examples of the breed (from the last decade of the 1800s to the first decade of the 1900s). However, those that do exist illustrate a breed that has changed little, save for the predominant depiction of parti-colored specimens in those old photos. Often referred to as the “Truffle Dog,” the rustic Lagotto Romagnolo originates in the Emilia-Romagna region of northern Italy and, more specifically, the area where the Po River forms a delta as it opens to the Adri-
This writer has been very fortunate to have observed a variety of the Sporting breeds doing what they were bred to do in natural surroundings, with average game bird hunters enjoying a morning or afternoon of shooting over their faithful canine partners. These hunters prepare their take for freezer storage
and future consumption or they enjoy the spoils of a day’s outing at the dinner table.
obtain an International Show Champion- ship (C.I.E.). Within FCI Group 7, Section 1, are the Continental Pointing Dogs, which include the German Shorthaired Pointer, German Wirehaired Pointer, Weimaraner, Vizsla (shorthaired), Wirehaired Vizsla, Brit- tany, Wirehaired Pointing Griffon, Spinone Italiano, and the Bracco Italiano. The Bracco is currently in theAKCMiscellaneousGroup. Within Group 7, Section 2, comprised of the British and Irish Setters and Pointers, are the Pointer (English), English Setter, Gordon Setter, Irish Setter, and the Irish Red and White Setter. FCI Group 8 consists of three sections: Section 1, Retrievers; Section 2, Flushing Dogs; and Section 3, Water Dogs. Within Group 8, Section 1, Retrievers, are the Chesapeake Bay Retriever, Curly-Coated Retriever, Flat-Coated Retriever, Golden Retriever, Labrador Retriever, and the Nova Scotia Duck Tolling Retriever. Comprising Group 8, Section 2, Flushing Dogs, are the Clumber Spaniel, Cocker Spaniel (English),
breeds, Sporting and otherwise, exist mainly for hunting or working, with nary a competi- tive event within their scope. This writer has been very fortunate to have observed a variety of the Sporting breeds doing what they were bred to do in natural surroundings, with average game bird hunters enjoying a morning or after- noon of shooting over their faithful canine partners. These hunters prepare their take for freezer storage and future consumption or they enjoy the spoils of a day’s outing at the dinner table. The Fédération Cynologique Interna- tionale (FCI) has divided this grouping of gundogs—all found in the AKC Sporting Group—mainly into two distinct groups: Pointers (FCI Group 7); and Retrievers (FCI Group 8). Within FCI Groups 7 and 8 are found various AKC-recognized breeds, listed below, as well as FCI-only recognized breeds. Those breeds whose names appear in italics are not subject to a working trial in order to
168 | SHOWSIGHT MAGAZINE, MAY 2021
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