|Barked: Fri Feb 17, '12 12:24pm PST |
|Rusty, you could watch Westminster for days on their website...trust me, I have! There's always just *one* more breed judging I'd like to see. It's great for avoiding studying and homework!
Oh, goodness. I'm not trying to be mean to show people. I'm getting ready to go bathe Marlowe for a show tomorrow, and I just finished looking up the entries for a big show we entered in a couple weeks (first time Marlowe will have class competition, and it's a major! ) I'm part of an all-breed kennel club, and my national breed club, and I'm a huge believer that the ultimate solution to dog overpopulation in this country is making sure every puppy born is planned for, wanted, and matched to a home based on reliable breed characteristics. So, I love purebred dogs, and the good people that breed and show them.
The key to my statement was the "show bubble". You know what I'm talking about. People who just go along with the current trend in the show ring rather than really looking at the breed standard, the breed's original function, and the health/temperament of their breeding stock. I'm seeing it big-time with Labs right now; I keep asking Lab breeders why they're putting overweight dogs in the ring, and the answer is, "that's what the judges are putting up."
To me, that's not an answer. That's losing sight of what dog breeding is supposed to be about. That's a complete detachment from any type of objective reality. That's the "show bubble". I think it's a direct consequence of having shows as a competition rather than an evaluation of breeding stock, but that's a whole 'nother topic.
I'm not saying the PDE was a great program (it wasn't), and I'm not saying that Peke breeders should lengthen their muzzles (I don't care), but if you're going to breed an extreme-looking dog, you know you're going to attract attention. You better make dang sure that when people come poking around, they're not going to find you doing unethical things like breeding dogs with health problems, breeding dogs to HAVE health problems (double merle), or covering up serious issues with surgery. Because THAT is the kind of crap that can be used as ammunition to convince the general public that we're all a bunch of screwballs that can't be trusted with dogs. And we're already under enough scrutiny as it is.
Ok, off my soapbox. I'm off tomorrow to cheer on people who breed and show (and hunt, and herd, and rally, etc...) their wonderful, happy, healthy dogs. And to get really ticked at the people that would sacrifice a breed's health and history to feed their own egos.
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