Summer is behind us, and you can find exhibitors at your local show huddled around portable TVs & computer screens watching football in between ring calls. As soon as Monday Night Football begins, I start looking forward to the biggest event in the Terrier world, the Montgomery County Kennel Club show in Bluebell PA. This year’s show is scheduled for Sunday, October 7th.
If you are a dog show junkie, like I, then you need to put this show on your bucket list. The sheer quantity of Terriers is mind boggling with many breeds drawing entries over 100. That’s twice what we normally see in the entire Terrier Group at many shows these days. Montgomery County draws entries from all over the world, including the top-ranked Terriers in the US. Nonetheless, this Terrier extravaganza, like the Westminster Kennel Club show, always provides some surprises. It will be even more so this year. The Number One Terrier, the Wire Fox, GCH CH AfterAll Painting the Sky, will be on the sidelines, watching her breeder Dr. Al Pertuit judge the National Specialty of the American Fox Terrier Club. The Kerry Blue Terrier, GCH CH Perrisblu Kennislain’s Chelsey, the current Number Four Terrier, has not been shown in the US since March. Barring a judge change or a stealth entry, I expect these two dogs will be absent.
As unpredictable as the outcome is, I cannot resist sharing with you the list of dogs I will be sure to watch this year. First up are the top-ranked Terriers. The Number Two Terrier in the US is the Scottish Terrier, GCH CH Lomondview Clementina. Phoebe has won 65 Terrier Groups, more than any other dog this year, and seven all-breed BIS. Phoebe was bred by Carol Annan, is owned by John & Daphne Eggert, and handled by Ernesto Lara.
Close on Phoebe’s heels is the Lakeland Terrier, GCH CH Larkspur Save Me A Spot. Spot only occasionally strays from his New England home, but he and handler RC Carusi have collected 14 BIS and 58 Terrier Groups this year. Spot was bred by Susan Fraser, Maria Sacco and Norm & Lynda Kenney, and is owned by Susan, Maria & Anthony Barker.
The Number Five Terrier is the Miniature Schnauzer, GCH CH Allaruth Just Kidding V Sole Baye. Justin has been all over the US these past few months with handler Bergit Kabel, collecting eight all-breed Bests and 38 Terrier Groups. Five of those BIS and 28 of the Group Ones have come in the last 10 weeks. No other dog comes into Montgomery County with more momentum. Justin was bred and is owned by Yvonne B. Phelps & Ruth Ziegler.
Next up is the Number Six Terrier, the American Staffordshire Terrier, GCH CH Alpine’s Highwayman. Jelly and breeder/owner/handler Ed Thomason are in hot pursuit of a breed record with 25 career BIS, 10 of which have come this year. Jelly has collected 32 Terrier Groups this season. Jelly was bred by Ed & Karen Thomason, Dan Nechemias, & Lois Claus, and is owned by Ed & Karen Thomason, Jessica Branch, Shartone Janga & Cyril Lefloch.
There are two Terriers not among the top-ranked dogs that I will be sure to watch at Montgomery. They are the Irish Terrier, GCH CH Rockledge McCallen Of Meath, and the Russell Terrier, GCH CH Goldsand’s Columbus. The Irish, McCallen, picked up his first two BIS of the year at the Gold Country Kennel Club shows Grass Valley CA over Labor Day weekend. Add those to 16 Group Ones, most of which have come in three months, and you have a dog that makes my short list. McCallen was bred by Linda Honey, is owned by Linda, Douglas Rapport, Joyce Wilson & Jeanene MacDonald, and handled by Jenny Wornall Rangel.
Columbus is the only Russell Terrier to have won a Best In Show since the breed’s recognition in June this year, with two BIS so far. He’s also logged a very respectable 11 Terrier Groups during that time. Columbus was bred by Madeleine Sandell-Bark, is owned by Mark Ulrich & Christina Areskough, and handled by Allison B. Sunderman.
Check back with me next week for a look at the entry breakdown for the Montgomery County Weekend. And that’s today’s Back Story.