Another successful show took place in July in Genk, Belgium, not far from Lommel in the province of Limburg.

The Limburgse Kynologen Vereniging show saw an increase in entries from 1,487 in 2011 to 1,636 this year. No one can seem to explain the jump in entries, as there was a specialty for the Ca de Bou, the Mallorcan Mastiff, both last year and this. Seeing 48 of this breed together is probably only possible at a World Show or a specialty such as this. Regardless, LKV Genk is getting famous for this, and I suppose more specialties will probably follow.

Saturday was a rather quiet day as only 643 dogs were judged. Sunday, on the other hand, had the remaining 1,000 dogs, plus the BIS program, so many of the judges were pretty busy.

The weather was splendid for the show and even rather warm inside the halls, though not too warm. The show site is good for attracting visitors, however dog shows are not that popular in Belgium. This has everything to do with budgets for publicity and TV. If you ask someone on the street to name a dog show, he or she will mention the Kortrijk Eurodogshow or the Brussels dog show. Both of these are the only ones that ever got any publicity, years ago, through a national broadcast. It is funny that people still only remember these two shows, as if there are no others.

Because dog shows are intended to promote purebred dogs and dog schools through pet-friendly public relations, it would be better if all dog shows could be a little better known. Of course, it is not easy to get the attention of the networks for dog sports in general. In Belgium, only football, cycling and tennis receive daily coverage.

Those who are interested in dogs, dog sports and dog shows know the way well enough. This certainly applied for the show in Genk. Dogs came from as far as Russia (5), the Baltics (2), the Ukraine (1), Finland (1), Ireland (1) and even the USA (1), from 20 countries in total.

The 20 invited judges represented eight countries, including Russia, the Ukraine and Ireland.

On Saturday, the judges could afford to work in a relaxed way, and only two were well-occupied. Mrs. Ingrid Hectors judged on one day only and had 74 dogs. Two of her breeds had large entries: besides 21 Australian Shepherds, Mrs. Hectors had a fantastic number of 53 Border Collies in her ring. Sean Delmar from Ireland had the day’s largest entry. His 84 dogs consisted of 18 Flat-Coated Retrievers, 46 Golden Retrievers and 20 Labrador Retrievers. Mr. Theo Leenen had 27 Swiss White Shepherds, a breed with ever-growing popularity.

On Sunday, Mr. Delmar again had a nice entry with 86 dogs, including 31 American Staffordshire Terriers and 21 Staffordshire Bull Terriers. This made him the top judge of the show with 170 dogs in total.

Mr. Erwin Deutscher, however, was the top scorer on Sunday. He did all the Poodles, 27 Yorkshire Terriers and a few other breeds. Over the weekend, he had 140 entries total. From Finland, Mrs. Kirsti Louhi came to judge no less than 47 Chihuahuas on Sunday, and ended with 138 entries for both days. Mr. Jos De Cuyper from Belgium had a nice total score too. Nineteen Dalmatians, 19 Shih Tzu and 30 Cavaliers, along with some other breeds, helped him reach a total of 124 entries over the weekend. I think in the last five years, and probably longer, Mr. Piotr Kroll from Poland has been a regular invitee in Genk, on the Ambiorix Trophy as well as on the LKV Grand Prix of Limburg. The exhibitors never seem to get tired of him, as again he scored well, especially on Sunday, when he had 34 French Bulldogs and a total of 85 dogs to judge, for a total of 118 entries for both days. Mrs. Galyna Kalynchenko came from the Ukraine to judge 38 dogs on Saturday. But on Sunday when she was mainly occupied with all the Pinscher and Schnauzer varieties, she was pretty busy with 75 entries. For the Ca de Bou, a judge from Spain was invited, Mr. Sergio Gual. A remarkable 48 specimens turned up for him.

Third Place at Genk 2012 under judge Vincent O’Brien was the Yorkshire Terrier Every Jackson de la Castelviroise, owned by Serge Mindeau. Photo by Karl Donvil.

Best in Show was in the hands of judge Vincent O’Brien from Ireland. He was pleased and honored to get this job. His 3rd place went to the Yorkshire Terrier Every Jackson de la Castelviroise. This French dog was entered in Open Class for Mr. Delmar who also made him BOG. Every Jackson was bred three years ago by Nathalie Peter and is owned by Serge Mindeau, both from France.

Second Place at Genk 2012 went to the Maltese Funny Ladies Super Boy, owned by Patrick Houthuys. Photo by Karl Donvil.

Second place was awarded to the Maltese Funny Ladies Super Boy, who was also entered in Open Class Males, judged by Mrs. Rita Reyniers and made Group winner by Mr. Erwin Deutscher. Super Boy was bred in Japan in the famous Funny Ladies kennel of Mr. Ayako Ito. One of his kennelmates was another frequent winner over here a few years ago. It is very possible that Super Boy will follow in that kennelmate’s European footsteps. At 2 years of age, his start is promising, and his master/handler Patrick Houthuys thinks so too.

Best in Show at Genk 2012 was the Newfoundland Hanningfield Touch of Magic, owned by Julie Sheridan. Photo by Karl Donvil.

Best in Show went to a dog that crossed the channel to show here, the Newfoundland UK Ch. Hanningfield Touch of Magic. Owner/handler Julie Cheridan entered him in the Champion Class to be judged by Mr. O’Brien himself. Touch of Magic won the breed over 18 competitors. The Group was judged by Mrs. Kuleshova from Russia who awarded him the ticket to compete for Best in Show. Here he was again subjected to the verdict of Mr. O’Brien, who finally made him his ultimate winner. A British victory! Touch of Magic is almost 5 years old and was bred by Mr. and Mrs. Walker. I wonder what was served in the evening to celebrate this victory: whisky or whiskey?

The next show in Genk will be on June 29 and 30, 2013. I hope the British finally understand that leaving their island can be rewarding. A few hundred British entries would be great, and bring the Irish too!

A complete listing of Group winners appears below.

Karl Donvil lives in Belgium where he is a freelance photographer and reporter specializing in dogs. He founded the World Dog Press Association in 2001 and is the current CEO. He is a member of the editorial board of the FCI newsletter and covers shows throughout Europe, including Crufts and the World Dog Shows.

Main Ring Results – Genk 2012

Group 1 – Sheepdogs and Cattle Dogs, except Swiss Cattle Dogs

Judge Galyna Kalinchenko, Ukraine

1st: Bearded Collie Absolument Des Emeraudes Du Lac, owned by Andre Thierry

2nd: Border Collie First Black Eagle Tahouka, owned by Piet Van Dongen

3rd: Australian Shepherd Some Kind Of Magic’s I’m A Playboy, owned by Michielsen-Goossens

Group II – Pinschers and Schnauzers, Molossoids and Swiss Mountain Dogs

Judge Elena Kuleshova, Russia

1st: Newfoundland Hanningfield Touch Of Magic, owned by Julie Sheridan

2nd: Leonberger Hakuna C. Bora Z. Miloticek, owned by Bart and Carine Bauwens-Roobrouck

3rd: Chinese Shar-Pei Alf, owned by Sylvia Van Woudenberg

Group III – Terrier

Judge Sean Delmar, Ireland

1st: Yorkshire Terrier Every Jackson De La Castel Viroise, owned by Serge Mindeau

2nd: American Staffordshire Terrier Gorgeous Jukon Sleven Of Carmichaels, owned by Olaf and Angela Verhorevoort-Quint

3rd: Airedale Terrier It Van ‘T Asbroek, owned by Francois Graulus

Group IV – Dachshunds

Judge Jef Verrees, Belgium

1st: Miniature Wirehaired Dachshund Furioso Vom Altsiedlerhof, owned by Katinka Stotijn

2nd: Standard Smooth Dachshund Joury of Lady Joan, owned by Jozef Holtappels

3rd: Miniature Longhaired Dachshund I’m Tom-Tom Of Queenshill, owned by J. Hense

Group V – Spitz and Primitive Types

Judge Pjotr Krol, Poland

1st: Miniature Spitz Orange/Grey Shade/Other Colors Razzle Dazzle of Pomeranian World, owned by Dirk Donne

2nd: Miniature Spitz White Jessie De Drei Oere, owned by Godelieve Paulussen

3rd: Basenji Eldorado’s Zary By Saqqara, owned by Liliane Alaerts Deschamps-Cholewa

Group VI – Scenthounds

Judge Vincent O’Brien, Ireland

1st: Beagle Gentleman Van ‘T H of TerKreke, owned by Marc Wille and Marleen Heynssens

2nd: Rhodesian Ridgeback Mkondo Wa Simba Juuchaka, owned by Michaela Ulak

3rd: Dalmatian Kalokairie’s Eye Candy, owned by Alex Cobb-McGill

Group VII – Pointers and Setters

Judge Theo Leenen, Belgium

1st: Irish Red Setter Fletcher of McBirdy, owned by Jean and Noella Duhant-Ketelaers

2nd: Weimaraner Short-Haired Grey Classics Ipanema Girl, owned by Edwin and Kristina Lenaerts

3rd: Slovakian Wire-Haired Pointing Griffon Hans, owned by Karel Brusten

Group VIII – Retrievers, Flushing Dogs and Water Dogs

Judge Jos De Cuyper, Belgium

1st: Flat-Coated Retriever Moonworker’s Enrico, owned by Valerie Bavegems

2nd: Golden Retriever Bonett Bride Double Decker, owned by Nancy Rosseel-Arnols and Erwin and Christina Suli

3rd: Small Dutch Waterfowl Dog Maxi-Casper V. D. Euregio, owned by Jerscha Keessen

Group IX – Companion and Toy Dogs

Judge Edwin Deutscher, Austria

1st: Maltese Funny Ladies Super Boy, owned by Patrick Houthuys

2nd: Standard Poodle Valentyno Du Pilier Bleu, owned by Danny Van Overloop

3rd: Toy Poodle Of Lovely Children Summerknight Savannah, owned by Dirk and Cornelia Kirschstein-Weber

Group X – Sighthounds

Judge Rita Reyniers, Belgium

1st: Whippet Hello World Di Mahanna, owned by J.W. Akkerboom-Van Der Schaaf

2nd: Italian Greyhound Eva Luna Du Domaine De Chanteloup, owned by Jean Laveyssiere-Reynaert and Leona Fabienne

3rd: Borzoi Kirov Ljoebov Krylataja Ljoebov, owned by Gielisse&Rijff and Anita M. Rademaker