WE HAVE often talked in this and other columns in DOG WORLD about breeds where the type varies from country to country, most frequently about those that have over the years developed on different lines on either side of the Atlantic.
Often these are breeds of British origin, with the American foundation stock of course coming from Britain. But with different priorities, and little exchange of judges, they have gone their separate ways – in the case of the Cocker Spaniel to the extent that they evolved into two different breeds. Some might say that the English Springer Spaniel has done the same in all but name.
Shelties and Collies we talked about earlier this year.
Golden Retrievers are another breed where there has been some divergence in type and where there has been relatively little mixing of recent British dogs into the mainstream American lines. One thing I would say here, risking the wrath of Mrs Foss no doubt – if you compare the pre-war British dogs which are the ancestors of today’s dogs everywhere, which do they resemble more – current British dogs or current American dogs?
Unlike in some of the other breeds with what is effectively a Transatlantic split, there is I believe a nucleus of breeders in the US and Canada who prefer a more British-looking Golden and who make sure this type is perpetuated there.
I’m grateful to Angel Martin from North Carolina for telling me that at the Golden Retriever Club of America’s recent 75th anniversary national specialty, with over 900 entries in the conformation classes (over 2,000 apparently if you include all the various activities), she won winners bitch under Lei Taft from Hawaii with Can Ch Ventess Sophia of Goldensglen which, she says, is the first time a ‘British-style’ Golden has won at the national.
‘Sophie’ was bred by Jane and Norman Stevens who are originally from England but who now also live in North Carolina. This was her first American Kennel Club show.
Looking at her pedigree, I see she is by UK-bred Goldkitts Pride Of Cornwall at Ventess (Sh Ch Shardanell Talk O’ The Town at Ipcressex a daughter of Sh Ch Ritzilyn Brandon and Sh Ch Remington Remember Me), while her dam is by Erinderry Harry Potter of Ventess ex a daughter of Can Ch Haydene Commador and Styal Sylverlina, so all UK or Irish lines within three generations.
The club had invited a British judge, Carol Gilbert, to do the ‘intersex’ competition, and she chose Sophie as best of winners – pictured. Her BOB was ten-year-old Ch Goodtime’s Johnny Bee Good owned by Cortney Corral and Paula and Joe Patelle.
Surely this success must give encouragement to those in the US or Canada who prefer the British ‘look’.