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The Millennial Generation of Handlers – Adam Bernardin

Meet Third Generation dog show person and professional Handler Adam Bernardin. A very accomplished handler at the age of 30, Adam is part of the next generation of professionals that’s setting the bar for achievement. He won the sporting group at the 2012 Westminster Kennel Club with the beautiful Irish Setter “Emily” GCH Shadagee Caught Red-Handed.

Where were you born?: Calgary, Alberta, Canada, now living in Chaplin, Connecticut.

Do you have an Assistant? Yes, Clare Tyler.

What roles have you played in the dog show world besides All Breed handler? I started off working for my sister Shaunna who was already a very accomplished groomer. She won Intergroom and Eurogroom as well as many other grooming competitions. I earned the honor of being the youngest certified master groomer in the world at 13 years old. When I was 14, I left home for 6 years to live and work with Will Alexander. I then decided that I really wanted to learn Terriers so, I moved and worked for RC Carusi. Eight years ago, I began my own handling business.

With what living dog person have you had the longest acquaintance, other than a relative? Will Alexander

What breeds do you currently own or breed? Irish setters and Brussels Griffons

Favorite dog: “Emily” GCH Shadagee Caught Red-handed

Are you married, single, or engaged? Well, right now it’s complicated.

What pets do you currently live with: A couple of Irish and Brussels Griffons

What is something people would be surprised to learn about you? I’m a Homebody but, don’t get to spend a lot of time here.

Besides dogs what other interests do you enjoy: I love golfing and snowboarding. My favorite place to snowboard is Park City, Utah.

Other than your chosen profession what would you have done: I was accepted to college and had planned to go into sports medicine.

How did you feel about being nominated for handler of the year?
I was just shocked! Especially because I’m so young. And I was even more excited that my “other father” Will Alexander was nominated too. He is the best person and dog person I have ever met and I hope that he wins because he really deserves it.

Favorite thing about showing dogs: The art of presenting a dog , making a good dog a great dog, the bond you get when showing a dog for months or years.

Least favorite thing: Never being home and getting to do just “normal” stuff around the house.

Who is your hero in the dog show world: Will Alexander, He is someone I look up to and is like my 2nd father.

Most memorable win: Winning the Group at the garden with Emily in 2012 and also winning Best In Show at Palm Springs KC.

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  • Maura/Birdhaven English Setters December 9, 2013 at 4:46 PM

    Thank you for the lovely article on Adam Bernardin. A very talented handler and his grooming is done with attention to every hair being in place and acentuating the best feature of every dogs he handles.

    Sadly today’s handlers don’t have the luxury of real time off – it ‘s show – go – show. Not good for them or the dogs they handle.

    Again much appreciated for the glimpse into a handlers life.

  • daniel sena December 15, 2013 at 6:39 AM

    Very nice article and learned from the future of the canine conformation.

    He has shown to me and at such a young age is excellent.

    Break a Leg!

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