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Show Dogs: Mathematical Beauties?
Dog shows are sometimes criticized as being mere canine beauty pageants, self-aggrandizing spectacles where dogs are paraded around for the chance to win a blue ribbon and a title or two. To the uninitiated, the backstage bottles of hair spray and assorted...
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Breeder Buzzwords – The Brussels Griffon
In the 1997 film, “As Good as It Gets,” a little dog, named Verdell, manages to steal the show from his Academy Award-winning co-star. The tiny Toy is a Brussels Griffon, and the movie’s box office success introduced audiences to the charms...
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Breeder Buzzwords – The Alaskan Malamute
Alaska occupies the northwestern corner of North America, where temperature extremes and harsh living conditions require a particular toughness of its inhabitants – both man and beast. It is in this challenging environment that one dog breed was developed for a life...
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BISD Polls: Dog Show Attire, Consecutive Shows, Welcoming Newbies and Finding Majors
Each week Best In Show Daily asks readers to chime in on a topical dog-related question derived from a recently published article or blog. Today we’re taking a look at your views on lucky charms in the ring, the number of consecutive...
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Breeder Buzzwords – The Tibetan Terrier
Take a look at the Tibetan Terrier and you’re likely seeing one of the world’s oldest breeds of domesticated dog. Recent DNA analysis confirms its ancient roots on “The Roof of the World,” though legend and romance remain a large part of...
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Breeder Buzzwords – The Havanese
Four hundred years of isolation in Cuba led to the development of a charming little dog favored by the privileged families of this colonial island nation. Known originally as the Havana Silk Dog, the Havanese is one of several small, companionable breeds...
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Breeder Buzzwords – The American Water Spaniel
The “American Brown,” as the American Water Spaniel has been called, worked alongside market hunters on the lakes and rivers of the upper Midwest beginning in the 1880s, supplying game for sale to the public. The breed was developed as an all-purpose...
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America’s Most Popular Dog Is the ‘Rescue’
Listen carefully. Eventually you will hear someone mention it. You might be standing in line at the supermarket checkout, waiting for a table at your favorite restaurant or listening to the local radio station. It can happen anywhere. Sooner or later you...
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Breeder Buzzwords – The Basenji
Central Africa has been the home of the Basenji for thousands of years. Since the time of the pharaohs, “the dog of the forest” has hunted alongside local peoples in the Ubangi-Uele basin, eking out a living in the heart of Africa....
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BISD Polls: Nostalgia, Purebred Dog Welfare, Travel Plans and Dog Show Fun
Best In Show Daily readers can share their opinions with the dog world through our topical poll questions. Each week we ask readers to share their views on the widest range of dog-related topics, from training methods and veterinary practices, to presentation...
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Say Hello to Miguel Betancourt
A nor’easter that ravaged the northeastern U.S. in 1994 was in full swing when the airliner carrying dog man Miguel Betancourt touched down at Philadelphia International Airport. “I never had seen snow coming down,” says the internationally acclaimed photographer who has spent...
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Breeder Buzzwords – The Cocker Spaniel
The American Spaniel Club Inc. predates the American Kennel Club by three years. Founded in 1881, the organization originally began to promote the interests of all sporting Spaniels, and eventually became the parent club of one of the world’s most beloved of...
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Dog Show Family Shows Support Following House Fire
The dog show community has once again demonstrated support for one of its own in the aftermath of a devastating fire that left a professional handler and her teenage daughter without a home. On Thursday, June 13, 2013, Lesley Potts and her...
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It’s a Great Day to Celebrate Our American-Made Breeds
The United States is sometimes referred to as a cultural melting pot, a place where immigrants from around the world come together to form an entirely original society. Although this metaphor has been challenged in recent years, it cannot be denied that...
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Breeder Buzzwords – The Irish Red and White Setter
Known by many as the “other” Setter throughout the 20th century, the Irish Red and White Setter has gone from near total obscurity to become one of the Sporting Group’s most stylish and capable birddogs. According to the Irish Red and White...
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Breeder Buzzwords – The Norwegian Buhund
The Norwegian Buhund is one of nearly four dozen Nordic breeds and varieties developed in the Northern Hemisphere to function as herders, hunters, draft or companion animals. Buhund means “homestead” or “farm dog,” and it is as a multipurpose performer in and...
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Breeder Buzzwords – The Parson Russell Terrier
In the world of purebred dogs, the list of breeds named for their originators is decidedly short. Amalgamated breeds such as the Boykin Spaniel and Doberman Pinscher – two contemporary canines that appeared largely due to the efforts of a single fancier...
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NEWS FLASH: ‘Jilly’s Jolly Jaunt’ Ends in Triumph!
A five-day, 140-mile journey along the banks of England’s Grand Union Canal culminated today with the arrival of Gavin Robertson and his Petit Basset Griffon Vendeen Ch. Soletrader Peek a Boo at London’s Great Ormond Street Hospital. A crowd of well-wishers was...
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BISD Polls: Crates, Judging, Counter Attacks and National Specialties
Best In Show Daily’s weekly poll question gives readers a chance to weigh in on the dog-related topics addressed by our editors. Your responses, together with the comments posted at the end of each article, provide a glimpse into how the fancy...
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‘Jilly’s Jolly Jaunt’ Moves Closer to Goal
“It’s been busy,” says breeder/owner-handler Gavin Robertson of the life he’s been living since he handled the Petit Basset Griffon Vendeen Ch. Soletrader Peek a Boo to Best in Show at Crufts Dog Show in March of this year. It seems as...
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Breeder Buzzwords – The Toy Fox Terrier
Bigger is not always better in dogs, especially among the companion and Toy breeds that provide canine comfort in small doses. Scaled down versions of familiar breeds, such as Spaniels and Greyhounds, have delighted fanciers for millennia. From Beijing to Boston, diminutive...
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‘Jilly’s Jolly Jaunt’ Is Taking Steps for Dogs
Britain’s 2012 Top Dog and 2013 Crufts Best in Show winner, Petit Basset Griffon Vendeen Ch. Soletrader Peek a Boo, will be going for a walk starting on Monday next week with breeder/owner-handler Gavin Robertson along England’s Grand Union Canal to raise...
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Breeder Buzzwords – The Saluki
The modern Saluki is the living embodiment of hounds that raced across the hot and arid sands of the Middle East thousands of years ago. Few breeds still in existence today can trace their lineage back to antiquity as can this ancient...
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Breeder Buzzwords – The Belgian Tervuren
Belgium is home to a family of general-purpose herding and guard dogs known as Chein de Berger Belge, or Belgian Shepherd Dogs. Developed to work sheep on farms in the low countries, several towns lent their names to the various coat and...
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BISD Readers Go to the Polls
The dog sport is peopled with individuals who are generally eager to share their passion for dogs with anyone who will listen. If you ask 20 dog people for their opinion on a topic related to their canine companions, you’re likely to...
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Breeder Buzzwords – The Puli
In “Hungarian Dog Breeds,” published in 1977, authors Pál Sárkány and Imre Ócsag address the almost mystical relationship that has existed for centuries between the shepherd and his eager and intelligent sheepdogs: “A shepherd who took pride in his job would boast...
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Eukanuba Hall Welcomes Dog Show Exhibitors
Finding a suitable venue to put on a dog show these days can be as big a challenge as finding a good plumber or a reliable dog sitter. Usually it takes just one good experience for a beautiful relationship to begin –...
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Breeder Buzzwords – The Bulldog
The Bulldog, a British original that is the foundation of so many modern breeds, has come to symbolize the United Kingdom as well as that island nation’s most celebrated prime minister, Winston Churchill. No other breed of dog can lay claim to...
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Breeder Buzzwords – The Maltese
Domestic dogs descended over millennia in various parts of the world from wolves, and the relationship of some purebreds with their ancient ancestors is easy to recognize even today. What’s less obvious is the pedigree that connects the wildest of canines to...
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Intergroom 2013 Celebrates Extraordinary Talent
The Meadowlands Exposition Center is familiar to many dog show exhibitors as the site of dozens of pre-Westminster specialties. What is perhaps less well-known among Best In Show Daily readers is that the Seacaucus, N.J., facility is also the site of an...
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Breeder Buzzwords – The Lakeland Terrier
The Lake District is a mountainous region of northwest England that gave rise to one of Britain’s prototypical Terriers. Descended from the area’s indigenous Fell Terrier, the Lakeland has worked in and around the rocky crags of local farms for generations. One...
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My Favorite Things: Drawing in Pen and Ink
The dog makes an ideal companion and working partner, as any reader of Best In Show Daily will tell you. But a canine also makes the perfect muse for artists and writers. In fact, the dog is an excellent model for any...
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Breeder Buzzwords – The Akita
More than 2 million commuters pass through Tokyo’s Shibuya Station on a typical weekday, and many of the hurried passengers in the world’s most densely populated urban area choose to meet at a bronze statue erected at one of the station’s main...
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Are You a ‘Groupie’?
When I first began going to dog shows in the early 1980s, I’d spend some of my weekends with friends who’d get together to build majors in our rare breed. Just about the only place to find a major in Irish Water...
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Breeder Buzzwords – The Bluetick Coonhound
Scenthounds were developed throughout Europe beginning in the ninth century. The monks of the Abbey of St. Hubert began keeping an ancient strain in the Ardennes Forest of Belgium during this period, and from their hounds a wide array of breeds was...
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Breeder Buzzwords – The Irish Setter
The first litter of puppies I ever met was born in the living room of a neighbor’s house in the mid-1970s. Every other kid in the neighborhood wanted to see the puppies, and when they were old enough to accept visitors, I...
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Pooch Popularity: Babies, Buddies and Bodyguards
The AKC dog registration statistics for 2012 represent 175 breeds and varieties of purebred dogs, ranked in order of popularity from most registered (Labrador Retriever) to least (English Foxhound). Although the nation’s oldest purebred dog registry no longer publishes figures for the...
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Breeder Buzzwords – The Bearded Collie
During my freshman year at college, a classmate frequently shared stories about her family’s dog back home. The house pet she described was a shaggy sheepdog with an overabundance of energy and an over-the-top personality. The year was 1979, and my friend...
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Breeder Buzzwords – The Schipperke
Belgium is home to several native breeds, including a number that were developed as loyal shepherds, the Chiens de Berger Belg. Municipalities favored various types of these dogs, including the Flemish province of Brabant where solid black dogs of different sizes were...
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Breeder Buzzwords – The Papillon
The royal houses of Europe were home to miniaturized dogs of many breeds, and perhaps none was more trusted as a canine-in-waiting than the Continental Toy Spaniel. So beloved was the little dog that court painters captured its likeness alongside those of...
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Breeder Buzzwords – The Staffordshire Bull Terrier
The Bull and Terrier breeds are extremely popular companions throughout the world, and perhaps none is better designed – or more maligned – for the job as is the highly intelligent and affectionate Staffordshire Bull Terrier. In most English-speaking countries the “Staffy...
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Breeder Buzzwords – The Leonberger
The large and lovable Leonberger has found its footing among the massive Mastiffs and boisterous Boxers of the Working Group. Since its 2010 recognition, the breed’s leonine likeness has not gone unnoticed by big-dog lovers in the U.S. Eligible to compete for...
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My Favorite Things: Treasured Gifts
One of life’s sweetest pleasures, I think, is making that routine trip to the mailbox only to discover a hand-written note or surprise package among the stack of bills, circulars and junk mail. Finding that card or parcel is like finding a...
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Breeder Buzzwords – The Ibizan Hound
The Balearic Island of Ibiza is home to the remarkable Ibizan Hound. On this pine-covered island of mountain ranges, rugged cliffs, coastal rock and pebbled beaches, the primitive Ibizan Hound evolved to work under and over every imaginable obstacle in order to...
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Westminster 2013 Considered a Success by Most
The big question on everyone’s mind right up until late Sunday night has been answered, “How do you think the show will go this year now that it’s being held at two separate locations?” Beautifully, cavernously and tiringly well. As exhibitors awoke...
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Sneaking a Peek with Pekingese ‘Malachy’
Winning Westminster is not for the faint of heart. Just ask professional handler David Fitzpatrick and Pekingese ‘Malachy,’ GCh. Palacegarden Malachy who stood together to face a mob of photographers after being selected the 2012 Best in Show winner at the world’s...
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Westminster: The Group Judges
This year’s Westminster Kennel Club dog show marks the 137th edition of this venerable organization’s celebrated exhibition of the purebred dog. Midtown Manhattan has been the site of the world’s most glamorous dog show since its inception in 1877, and this year seven...
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Four Westminster Winners to Attend Angel On a Leash Benefit
For the third year in a row, past Westminster winners will join with celebrants at the Angel On a Leash benefit to honor this year’s recipients of the organization’s Halo Awards. Four living legends, Pekingese ‘Malachy,’ Ch. Palacegarden Malachy, Scottish Deerhound ‘Hickory,’ GCh. Foxcliffe...
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Say Hello to Michael Dougherty
When Michael Dougherty steps onto the floor of Madison Square Garden on the night of February 12, he’ll likely have a keepsake of his late father tucked away in his breast pocket. The Escondido, Calif., resident honored with choosing this year’s Best...
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Press Conference Generates Excitement for Westminster 2013
A raucous crowd of reporters gathered at the Affinia Hotel Manhattan on Monday, January 28, 2013, to attend a press conference announcing several exciting changes planned for this year’s Westminster Kennel Club dog show. If the number of photographers and journalists packed into...
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Breeder Buzzwords – The German Shorthaired Pointer
“Form follows function” is an axiom favored by breeders and judges of purebred dogs, and perhaps nowhere is this truth better expressed than in the versatile hunting companion known as the German Shorthaired Pointer. The all-purpose gundog, with its symmetrical construction, enduring...
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Our Second Year Together
Today’s newsletter marks the beginning of Best In Show Daily’s second year of home delivery of the latest news and information from around the dog world. I say “home delivery,” but as the fancy’s first truly interactive website, our editors, bloggers and...
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From the Editor
A year has passed since this article originally appeared on Best In Show Daily. We thought it would be fun to look back at our revolutionary first year as we make plans to cover the dog sport for 2013. This year marks...
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Spreading the Word About Dog Shows
I generally make a few early morning pit stops on my way to a dog show. Other than stopping for gas, a quick spin by the drive-thru window at a Starbucks is the most important errand of the day. A donut or...
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Breeder Buzzwords – The German Shepherd Dog
The German Shepherd Dog, sometimes referred to as the “German Shepherd” – or simply “Shepherd” – is one of the world’s most recognizable purebred dogs. Its strong, muscular body and innate intelligence have made it the breed of choice for countless families...
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Breeder/Owner-Handler Wins Ridgeback National
The power went out in the New Jersey home of Rhodesian Ridgeback fancier Karen LaFleur for 10 days prior to her scheduled departure for the National Specialty in Orlando, Fla. Superstorm Sandy had just pummeled the Mid-Atlantic region, but the power outage and...
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Palm Springs Independent Specialties - Day Two
The desert sun is heating up the manicured lawns of the Empire Polo Club today where several dozen breeds are competing for the second straight day of limited-breed competition. Only the Herding breeds are noticeably absent from the polo fields in this...
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The Century Club
Do you remember your first Best in Show win? Me neither. For most of us, earning that top award remains a fixture on our annual list of New Year’s resolutions. For others, owner-handers and professionals alike, the goal is not winning a...
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Palm Springs Independent Specialties - Day One
Dog fanciers at the independent specialties held in Indio, Calif., seemed eager to get on with the 2013 show season as they arrived in the cool of the morning at the Empire Polo Club’s manicured lawns. Signs of last year’s race-to-the-finish seemed...
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New Year’s Resolutions
This article originally appeared in the January 2003 AKC Gazette’s Irish Water Spaniel breed column. Happy New Year! January is the month when many people resolve to eat less, exercise more and place greater emphasis on the things in life that matter...
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Breeder Buzzwords – The American Eskimo Dog
I always enjoyed visiting with my Uncle Ed and Aunt Margie when I when a kid. Their suburban Philadelphia home seemed to have everything necessary that a group of cousins could want to be entertained: a rec room with a hi-fi system;...
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An AKC/Eukanuba Top Ten List
In just 12 short years, the AKC/Eukanuba National Championship has become an institution on the American dog show scene. Since the first show was held in Orlando, Fla., in 2001, AENC has grown to become a celebration of dogs unlike any other. The...
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Breeder Buzzwords – The Silky Terrier
What do you get when you cross an Australian Terrier with a Yorkshire Terrier? Well, during the turn of the last century, dog lovers Down Under discovered the answer in their search to improve color in the former through introductions of the...
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Say Hello to Wood Wornall
The list of champions that professional handler Wood Wornall has piloted to record-breaking wins includes some of the most notable names of the late 20th century. ‘Snooty,’ ‘Billy’ and ‘Mick’ are just three of the names that he helped make famous throughout...
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Breeder Buzzwords – The Welsh Terrier
It’s not every day that a Terrier of one of the lesser-known breeds passes you by on the street. But this is not a particularly unusual occurrence in the town where I live. On any given day, I am apt to cross...
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My Favorite Things: Public Dog Art
Most major metropolitan areas in the U.S. have public arts programs that allow residents and visitors access to art in public spaces. The memorials, monuments and murals that dot cityscapes are often included as part of walking tours that introduce pedestrians to...
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The National Dog Show Is a Thanksgiving Day Tradition
Many of the nation’s top dogs will be spending this weekend at the Greater Philadelphia Expo Center in Oaks, Pa., for the chance to be selected Best of Breed at the National Dog Show Presented by Purina. A breed win at Saturday’s show,...
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Breeder Buzzwords – The Doberman Pinscher
On top of the War Dog Memorial at the U.S. Naval Base Guam sits a life-size bronze sculpture of a Doberman Pinscher named Kurt, by California artist Susan Bahary. Titled “Always Faithful,” the memorial is a tribute to the dogs that served...
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Animal Intuition Signals Things to Come
As Hurricane Sandy made its way up the Atlantic coast last week, forecasters predicted that communities in the Mid-Atlantic region would likely experience a catastrophic storm surge and massive power outages. While residents in the storm’s path hurriedly prepared their properties for...
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Breeder Buzzwords – The Basset Hound
In 1958, shoe manufacturer Wolverine World Wide of Rockford, Mich., selected the name “Hush Puppies” for its new brand of casual footwear. The brushed-suede shoe with a crepe sole needed a logo, and the company chose the gentle and easygoing Basset Hound...
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Breed Standards: The Long and Short Forms
In a 1983 AKC Gazette column titled, “Whose Breed Standard Is It, Anyway,” Poodle columnist and popular all-round judge Dr. Jacklyn Hungerland wrote, “As a member of the breed standard committee that produced the current standard for the Poodle (in 1978), I...
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Breeder Buzzwords – The English Cocker Spaniel
Most canine historians accept the idea that the Spaniel is of Spanish derivation. Sporting dog authority C. Bede Maxwell, however, does not count herself among them. In her masterful work, “The Truth About Sporting Dogs,” published in 1972 by Howell Book House,...
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Project Shar-Pei
When it comes to television viewing, I must admit to a few indulgences. The Weather Channel’s “Storm Stories” and “Full Force Nature” always get my attention. I enjoy watching the History Channel’s “Ice Road Truckers” and the Smithsonian Channel’s “Aerial America” too....
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Breeder Buzzwords – The Briard
While walking through a fairground on a sunny Sunday recently, I was stopped in my tracks by the sight of two beautiful dogs walking alongside their mistress. Each was covered with long, tawny hair over every inch of its big body, and...
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Breeder Buzzwords – The Tibetan Terrier
Take a look at the Tibetan Terrier and you’re likely seeing one of the world’s oldest breeds of domesticated dog. Recent DNA analysis confirms its ancient roots on “The Roof of the World,” though legend and romance remain a large part of...
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My Favorite Things: A Late 20th-Century Dog Book
I enjoy a good book, especially a good dog book. My office shelves are lined with volumes that cover a wide variety of canine-related themes, from New York Times best sellers to obscure German breed club yearbooks. Most were purchased in stores...
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Three Legends Leave Their Mark
The purebred dog world lost three of its finest goodwill ambassadors recently when a trio of past Westminster winners died within weeks of each other. The legacy left by the Bichon Frise, ‘JR,’ Ch. Special Times Just Right; the Colored Bull Terrier,...
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Breeder Buzzwords – The Bull Terrier
In Richard Harding Davis’, “The Bar Sinister,” published in 1903 by Charles Scribner’s Sons, the protagonist is a Bull Terrier named Kid that overcomes his rough-and-tumble beginnings as a street fighter to become a much-celebrated bench champion. The rags-to-riches tale, told from the...
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Everything Is Marketing
An advertising executive I once knew built a successful agency on the principle that every business is in the promotions business. “Everything is marketing,” he would say, understanding that a potential customer’s perception of a product or service was no less important...
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Breeder Buzzwords – The Saint Bernard
“Everybody loves a Saint Bernard,” writes Claire Huchet Bishop in her book, “Bernard and His Dogs,” published in 1952 by Houghton Mifflin Company. “He is no lap dog,” the author admits. “But for a real dog, give me a Saint Bernard.” The...
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Say Hello to Ernesto Lara
Ernesto Lara’s journey toward becoming an all-breed professional handler began with an act of valor. While visiting an aunt in his hometown of Mexico City, the quiet 13-year-old overcame his fear of dogs in an instant by preventing a fight between the...
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We Remember
We all remember where we were 11 years ago today when we heard the news of the disastrous events unfolding in New York and Washington, DC. Time stood still as we turned on our television sets to watch terrorism’s arrival on American...
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Breeder Buzzwords – The Welsh Springer Spaniel
The secret of the Spaniel’s appeal is really no secret at all. Good looks, a beguiling expression and an unbridled enthusiasm characterize the breeds that comprise one of the dog world’s most enduring families of gun dogs. During the 15th century, dogs...
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Breeder Buzzwords – The Australian Cattle Dog
On a crisp autumn afternoon many years ago, I met a young lady and her curiously colored pup as they strolled through the neighborhood. Although plenty of dogs were out and about with their owners that day, this pair was hard to...
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Breeder Buzzwords – The French Bulldog
The first French Bulldog I ever saw was a brindle bundle of energy walking with his owner through Philadelphia’s Rittenhouse Square. It was early evening as the pair strolled around the central fountain causing a minor sensation as they went. It seemed...
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Breeder Buzzwords – The Cavalier King Charles Spaniel
Spaniels were developed in Britain as specialist hunters, originally classified by weight and color. The smallest of their kind were known as “comforter” Spaniels that principally enjoyed a life of leisure among society’s well-to-do families. The ancestors of the Cavalier King Charles...
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Breeder Buzzwords – The Bedlington Terrier
The distinctive appearance of the Bedlington Terrier sets it apart from every other breed of dog. So unique is this racy ratter’s make and shape that many who meet the breed for the first time think they’re seeing a lamb instead of...
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Breeder Buzzwords – The Portuguese Water Dog
Portuguese fishermen began sailing the high seas during the Middle Ages. From fishing villages scattered up and down the Atlantic coast, their ships set sail for faraway ports throughout Britain, Europe, Asia, Africa and even the New World. For centuries, wherever these...
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My Favorite Things – the Dog Next Door
I grew up in Philadelphia during the tumultuous ‘70s. As one of five kids living in a row house, space was at a premium and the energy my siblings and I generated often created chaos. With so much going on every day,...
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Breeder Buzzwords – The Borzoi
In the early 20th century, the impossibly elegant Borzoi became an icon of streamlined beauty and elegant efficiency. The breed formerly known as the Russian Wolfhound perfectly symbolized Western society’s desire to shake off old cultural confines in the aftermath of World...
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My Favorite Things – A Sussex Spaniel Sketch
Art class was something I always enjoyed as a child. Like many kids, the possibility presented by a blank piece of paper and a pencil was too much for me to resist. I’d spend hours drawing all sorts of pictures – mostly...
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Breeder Buzzwords – The Golden Retriever
In the early 19th century, gundog enthusiasts began combining various Old and New World breeds in an effort to create a dog that could reliably find and bring back dead and wounded game. Pointers and Setters of the day were often trained...
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Breeder Buzzwords – The Cardigan Welsh Corgi
The former kingdom known as Ceredigion in mid-west Wales is the birthplace of the colorful companion and useful worker known as the Cardigan Welsh Corgi. The name Corgi is an Anglicization of the Welsh “cor gi,” a phrase sometimes translated as “dwarf...
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Rare Breeds Need Small Breeders
As an Irish Water Spaniel breeder, nothing could be more important than ensuring the continuation of our rare breeds. Only a small group of dedicated supporters stands between the continuation of these dogs and their extinction. Now the threat is even greater...
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Breeder Buzzwords – The Dalmatian
As one of the world’s most recognizable dog breeds, the Dalmatian wears its breed-defining characteristic with a freckled frenzy. This active and energetic breed remains little changed since its image first appeared on the walls of Egyptian tombs. For centuries, artists in...
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Breeder Buzzwords – The Miniature Pinscher
When it comes to our canine companions, a dog’s physical size and its sense of self can often seem disproportionate. Large dogs are often gentle giants, content to go through life as living, breathing throw rugs. On the other hand, small dogs...
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My Favorite Things – A Floor Mat that Works
Keeping happy housedogs along with a clean house can seem like mutually exclusive propositions. When the previous owners updated the kitchen of our circa 1920s house, I don’t think they considered the impact a couple of active dogs would have on the...
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Breeder Buzzwords – The Scottish Terrier
Her name was Sassie. She belonged to the family of a childhood friend and was not especially well-liked by her neighbors. Though small, she was mighty and ruled her piece of this world with absolute authority. She had a big mouth and...
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Breeder Buzzwords – The Bernese Mountain Dog
As kids growing up in the 1970s, my brothers and I would spend our Sunday mornings in church, followed by a big breakfast and plenty of television viewing. One of the shows we looked forward to most was a locally produced children’s...
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Breeder Buzzwords – The Rhodesian Ridgeback
Throughout recorded history, crusaders and explorers, merchants and refugees survived their journeys, in part because of the domesticated animals that accompanied them. Horses, cattle and sheep were essential for sustaining vast armies that set out to explore and conquer the known world....
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My Favorite Things – the Early Morning Dog Show
I like the early morning hours. Before the sun comes up, there’s a calm stillness to the air that’s filled with quiet anticipation. This is especially so on dog show days, when the alarm goes off at four a.m. and I’m on...
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Breeder Buzzwords – The Vizsla
A thousand years ago, the ancestor of today’s Vizsla had already found its place as hunting partner with the nomadic people of the Greater Hungarian Kingdom. Magyar Vizslas (Hungarian Pointers) have worked alongside hunter and herder ever since, tracking and pointing wounded...
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Breeder Buzzwords – The Border Collie
In the 1995 film, “Babe,” the protagonist piglet avoids becoming dinner by acting like a sheepdog. The intelligent little porcine’s good fortune is having a canine role model that some believe is the smartest of all dog breeds – the Border Collie....
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Breeder Buzzwords – The Boston Terrier
As a student in the early ‘80s, I traveled to school each day on an elevated train that towered over the houses below. From this vantage point, it was easy to peer into the windows of the little row homes along the...
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My Favorite Things – the Carefree Whelping Room
When my Irish Water Spaniel bitch came in season last summer, I decided to breed her for the first time. She was 5 years old and in great shape, and I felt that if she was ever going to contribute to the...
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Breeder Buzzwords – The Boxer
A perennial favorite of dog lovers everywhere, the Boxer has enjoyed a permanent home in the hearts of countless supporters since its creation more than a century ago. This charming and energetic companion has managed to sustain its popularity despite the social,...
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Breeder Buzzwords – The Pomeranian
Breeders of purebred dogs speak a language all their own. Wherever they gather, at dog shows, seminars or in chat rooms, words and phrases are used that have very narrow definitions. Their usage makes it difficult for a novice to fully participate...
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Breeder Buzzwords – The West Highland White Terrier
Breeders of purebred dogs speak a language all their own. Wherever they gather, at dog shows, seminars or in chat rooms, words and phrases are used that have very narrow definitions. Their usage makes it difficult for a novice to fully participate...
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Bark! Who Goes There?
Our dogs speak in a variety of voices. Some of the sounds they make are breed-specific, while others are more universally expressed. With little effort, we all learn to distinguish the vocalizations our dogs make, and we can generally interpret their desire...
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Breeder Buzzwords – The Bloodhound
Breeders of purebred dogs speak a language all their own. Wherever they gather, at dog shows, seminars or in chat rooms, words and phrases are used that have very narrow definitions. Their usage makes it difficult for a novice to fully participate...
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My Favorite Things: A Navy Blue Blazer
On many occasions, gentlemen are expected to wear a jacket and tie. Weddings, funerals and interviews come to mind, although rules governing such things have long been in question and “Casual Fridays” have been forcing custom tailors to retire early for decades...
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Venerable Old Dominion Is More Than Just a Dog Show
Cherry blossoms are the symbol of springtime in the metropolitan Washington, D.C., area, and the Cherry Blossom Cluster signals the start of the region’s spring show season. This year, a dozen specialty clubs will welcome exhibitors on Friday, April 20, 2012, to...
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Breeder Buzzwords – The Chesapeake Bay Retriever
Breeders of purebred dogs speak a language all their own. Wherever they gather, at dog shows, seminars or in chat rooms, words and phrases are used that have very narrow definitions. Their usage makes it difficult for a novice to fully participate...
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Breeder Buzzwords – The Rough Collie
Breeders of purebred dogs speak a language all their own. Wherever they gather, at dog shows, seminars or in chat rooms, words and phrases are used that have very narrow definitions. Their usage makes it difficult for a novice to fully participate...
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My Favorite Things: Grandpop’s Shadow Box
Few certainties exist when it comes to showing dogs. Among the things exhibitors can reliably count on are early morning ring times, broken majors and less than healthy lunch fare. For those with a quality dog and a willingness to travel far...
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Breeder Buzzwords – The Great Dane
The Greek God of the Sun, Apollo, is most-often depicted as a virile young man riding a chariot into battle. It is fitting, therefore, that the breed we know as the Great Dane should be given the designation, “the Apollo of dogs.”...
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Breeder Buzzwords – The Irish Terrier
Breeders of purebred dogs speak a language all their own. Wherever they gather, at dog shows, seminars or in chat rooms, words and phrases are used that have very narrow definitions. Their usage makes it difficult for a novice to fully participate...
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Breeder Buzzwords – The Chinese Shar-Pei
DNA analysis indicates that the Shar-Pei is one of the world’s most ancient dog breeds. Apparently a few thousand years is enough time for the distinguishing characteristics of this Chinese original to become firmly established. Originating in the Guangdong province of Southern...
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My Favorite Things: Pet Poetry
Your Dog and My Dog is a charming little book filled with poems about our favorite canine companions. Published in 1935 by the Reilly & Lee Co. of Chicago, the collection of works was assembled by Tony Wons, a popular radio personality...
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AKC Breeder of the Year Uses Dog Skills for a Better World
“Gob-smacked” is how Pluis Davern describes feeling the moment she learned she was named AKC Breeder of the Year. The founder of a “boutique” kennel of Sussex Spaniels in Royal Oaks, Calif., she describes that memorable moment as “surreal. I thought of...
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My First Show Catalog
Thirty years of attending dog shows have helped me to amass a serious collection of show catalogs. Most are from all-breed conformation shows, but many are from specialty shows, including the National Specialties I’ve attended as both spectator and exhibitor. Many of...
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Breeder Buzzwords – The Afghan Hound
Breeders of purebred dogs speak a language all their own. Wherever they gather, at dog shows, seminars or in chat rooms, words and phrases are used that have very narrow definitions. Their usage makes it difficult for a novice to fully participate...
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A Perfect Match – Puppies and New Exhibitors
When I began showing my first dog, I would take her to handling classes at my local all-breed club. Every Thursday night, about a dozen owners would gather to work on our presentation skills while giving our puppies time to socialize with...
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Breeder Buzzwords – The Japanese Chin
Breeders of purebred dogs speak a language all their own. Wherever they gather, at dog shows, seminars or in chat rooms, words and phrases are used that have very narrow definitions. Their usage makes it difficult for a novice to fully participate...
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Everybody Loves Elvis
Penn Oak Love Me Tender, otherwise known as Elvis, is a spry four-year old Norfolk Terrier with a career busy enough to rival that of his superstar namesake. Frank Rogers of Merchantville, NJ, bred the little dog and placed him with Patti...
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Prep Your Tack Box with Care for Peace of Mind
The tack box is an indispensable tool for anyone who shows dogs. This portable storage unit is designed to accommodate an arsenal of supplies and is lightweight enough to travel just about anywhere. Aluminum models seem to be most popular and offer...
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Breeder Buzzwords – The Pointer
By Dan Sayers Breeders of purebred dogs speak a language all their own. Wherever they gather, at dog shows, seminars or in chat rooms, words and phrases are used that have very narrow definitions. Their usage makes it difficult for a novice...
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Take the Lead Celebrates
For twenty years, the caring people of Take the Lead have been providing direct services and support for fanciers suffering with life-threatening or terminal illness. The not-for-profit foundation has been a major force within the community during this time. Its all-volunteer staff works...
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Why 'Breeder Buzzwords?'
Breeders of purebred dogs speak a language all their own. Wherever they gather, at dog shows, seminars or in chat rooms, words and phrases are used that have very narrow definitions. Their usage makes it difficult for a novice to fully participate...
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A Westminster Wedding
“I’m a very lucky man,” said Brad Slayton of Auburn, WA, of his marriage to Debbie Parsons. The couple met through their dogs and were married today at Madison Square Garden before a packed house that included fellow exhibitors, spectators and one...
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The Morning After
A new day dawns and for one lucky dog, the hard work of maneuvering a non-stop media tour is already in full swing. To win the Westminster Kennel Club dog show means there’s little time for reflection. Last night’s triumphant purebred is...
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Meadowlands Specialty Association – Sunday, February 12, 2012
Sunday’s judging at the Meadowlands Specialty Association’s Combined Specialty shows saw three days of competition draw to a close. Ten specialties and one limited-breed club held their conformation events for the third day at the Meadowlands Exposition Center in Secaucus, NJ. The...
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Meadowlands Specialty Association – Saturday, February 11, 2012
By Dan Sayers A light snow greeted exhibitors Saturday morning at the Meadowlands Exposition Center in Secaucus, NJ, for day two of the Meadowlands Specialty Association’s Combined Specialty Shows. This three-day event supports about 30 separate specialties, including the “Combined Setters” specialties...
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Say Hello To Cindy Vogels
By Dan Sayers When Cindy Vogels steps onto the floor at Madison Square Garden on Valentine’s Day, 2012, her selection for Best in Show will determine the dog that will become America’s next canine sweetheart. This year, the Greenwood Village, Colo., resident...
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A Symbiotic Performance
The extraordinary thing about domestic dogs, as everyone knows, is how they so completely share their lives with us. We provide them with security and a safe environment, and they give us companionship, protection and, for some, a livelihood. Our relationship with...
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Good Book Hunting
Philadelphia was once the center of publishing in the United States. That center eventually moved north to Manhattan and was further scattered with the advent of desktop publishing. Nevertheless, my hometown had long maintained its literary legacy through the many fine bookstores...
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Heavy Petting
I know what you’re thinking, and you’re way off the mark. There are times when the supply of available puppies exceeds the demand for them. When this occurs, breeders must work extra hard to find suitable homes and are genuinely happy when...
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The Delights Of Disobedience
My puppies are growing by leaps and bounds. They’re 12 weeks old now and possess the curiosity and playfulness that are typical of their breed. Recently, however, they’ve begun to express a kind of willfulness for which the Irish Water Spaniel is...
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The Daily Diary
Of all the days of the week, Monday is the most emotionally dependent. People regularly claim to hate it, except on the occasion of a National Holiday, the American workers’ equivalent of a Get Out Of Jail Free card. Its fellow weekdays,...
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Kennel Club of Palm Springs 2012
Palm Springs, in the desert of Southern California, was a destination for pleasure seekers long before the Rat Pack started performing at the Racquet Club. The lure of this desert oasis has been favored by railroad executives, farmers and health and fitness...
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'Welcome to Best in Show Daily'
“The Revolution Will Not Be Televised,” according to 1970’s Jazz poet Gil Scott-Heron, but in 2012 it most certainly will be blogged, tweeted and “friended” on Facebook! Welcome to Best In Show Daily, the revolutionary new online publication serving the dog show...
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Breeder Buzzwords – The Irish Red and White Setter
Known by many as the “other” Setter throughout the 20th century, the Irish Red and White Setter has gone from near total obscurity to become one of the Sporting Group’s most stylish and capable birddogs. According to the Irish Red and White...
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