Dog lovers: First night of Westminster Dog Show on tonight

Title says it all…Olympics Vs. Westminster. I vote for Westminster.


:frowning: I wish I had cable TV so I could watch it. Here I am… off work, hoime, and… yeah.

Being poor really sucks.

Anyone here know any “star” dogs, the ones to watch?

Damn, this is one of the things I miss after killing our Dish Network subscription. (Not poor, just sick of paying so much for mostly crap TV.)

I think the sporting group was usually the second night, right? We always cheer for the English Springer Spaniel.

I’m watching Westminster, too. The Olympics will be on for a couple of weeks, but this won’t!
I told Auggie, The Cutest Dog on the Planet, that I couldn’t enter him because it wouldn’t be fair to the other dogs. I didn’t mention that they don’t have a “Mutt” group.

Let’s see…right now I have dogs from the working, sporting and non-sporting groups. Do I root for the dobie, standard poodle, giant schnauzer, english setter or alaskan malamute?

I hate the woman commentating with David.


Grrrr! Can’t enjoy Westminister at all since AKC co-opted the Border Collie. Whatever they call that fluffy, vacant black & white thing in the herding group (doesn’t matter if it hasn’t run yet, it’s always the same cookie cutter type), it’s NOT a border collie.

I really used to like admiring the nice looking dogs, until I realized that the REAL representatives of most of the working/herding breeds, wouldn’t be caught dead there and sure as heck wouldn’t get placed if they showed up.

Sorry, I know everyone else enjoys it, and it’s my annual piss on your fun hijack. Enjoy the rest of the dogs :).

I will never understand why poeple feel that a dog cannot look GOOD and still do the job they were bred to do. Take one of those Border Collies from Westminster, put him or her in the hands of a herding trainer and I bet you anything, that dog would herd. Of course they come into the ring looking their best- why would someone enter a dog in a show and not bother to groom?

I have Gordon Setters, and my male is over half way to his championship. (He would be LONG finished if I had the money to do it.) He is also half way to his junior hunter title. My friend that hunts over him says he is one of the best dogs he has ever shot over. And yeah… he’s pretty doing it.

Ever hear the term form follows function? These dogs are built a certain way for a reason. If they are poorly conformed, they will not hold up to a full day’s work, be it in the field, herding, pulling a sled, schutzhund… whatever.

There is NO shame in a dog being pretty.

Every bloody year we have a stinkin’ poodle in BiS. Currently I’ll be rooting for Conrad the Puli. Good show by my sentimental favorite the Shih Tzu to get 3rd in group. Stinkin’ poodle.

The border collies in the show ring come from VERY specific NZ, UK and Aussie show lines since those countries had conformation showing established well before AKC recognized the border collies against the wishes of the *majority * of border collie breeders. The show ring border collies are so far removed from working stock, that they are not the same breed. Most are only AKC registered and several generations removed from any kind of actual working dogs. Hobby herders, maybe. But not working dogs.

The majority of border collies remain non-AKC registered. It’s possible to dual register but most of us frown on it and you can have your ABCA (the working registery) dog de-registered if it has a conformation championship. Instead of the opinion of a herding breed conformation judge who has most likely never been involved in the type work these dogs should be bred to do, we have a extremely tough, long distance, tough sheep trial system that proves out working ability. The training required to do the work, the work itself, the conditions and environment the dogs must negotiate- all of those do a far better job of proving out function than a trot around a Westminister ring does. It’s a common delusion that show people had, that if only they tried, their dogs could do the work. I only speak for border collies in this, although I suspect the same is true in many breed.

I AM a sheepdog trainer, and I have had show-bred border collies out to work, many times. They all will do the work, to a point, probably even well enough to get an AKC championship. I have no idea about the hunting tests, I hope the same is not true, but the herding trial system in AKC is extremely simplified, it has to be in order to make room for all the different styles of herding. But they are always missing something- a lot of times, it’s all chase. They know they are supposed to do something with sheep, but they aren’t born knowing what that is. Most well bred working dogs are born knowing what to do with a sheep, they don’t have to be shown their method, just the where and when.

The border collie has a very sophisticated set of talents that cannot be proven out within the AKC system. As an example, the outrun that a border collie does is it’s hallmark- it’s the thing that very few breeds can do at such incredible distances. I have never seen or heard of an AKC trial with more than 200-300 yard outruns. Most AKC trials are actually held in arenas, so 75-100 yards is more common. The top Border Collie trials consist of anywhere from 400- 600 yard outruns, with 800 yards outruns, with a double lift (meaning the dog leaves the first packet of sheep it gathered and goes back anywhere from 200-400 yards to find another packet- something NEVER seen at an AKC trial and critical to the economic utility of the sheepdog).

I have nothing against pretty dogs. I own several pretty nice looking dogs. They weren’t bred to look nice, but they do nonetheless. One of our dogs is probably a little goofy looking, but nothing wrong with him structurally- you won’t notice that curly-ish coat when he’s picking up his sheep, he’s all fluid movement. Most of mine are smooth coat, which despite being “allowed” by AKC, is hardly ever put up because it isn’t the usual type. Doesn’t matter much that it’s a more practical coat, especially for the majority of “real” jobs these dogs have. Not that they need, again, the approval of a person who probably doesn’t own a sheep, let alone a sheepdog.

And as a horse and livestock person, I understand how structural faults can affect function. But a perfectly angulated rear cannot help the dogs gather ewes with lambs- a task that requires patience, intelligence and bravery. If the ewe is a Western range ewe, another thing you will never, ever see at an AKC trial but is common at our USBCHA trials, a pretty coat and the “correct” ear set won’t convince her that the dog is not a coyote to be stamped into the ground. Or to do a 10 mile drive, often out of sight and hearing, on range sheep or cattle, like so many border collies do. Those things are relevant to the border collie, the breed ring is not.

Sorry, those dogs are not border collies. I’ve got the sheep, feel free to recruit one to come out and I can show you the difference.

**WHIPPET **wins hound group! YAY!

I prefer the sporting and working dogs, but the dog show made for a nice break from the figure skating. I always enjoy watching the greyhounds and the whippets, and I like the Rhodesian Ridgebacks, too. I encountered one of these in person years ago and they’re very physically impressive dogs. Tomorrow I’ll be pulling for a Gordon Setter, like I always do. Failing that I’ll be behind the English Springer, and if that doesn’t work out, I’ll hope the winner is something that can be described as a real dog and not one of these miniature mutant things, most of which I find completely repulsive.

By the way, I assume our J.R.R. Tolkien fans were rooting for the bearded collie.

LVBoPeep. I have been schooled. Very interesting comments and thank you.

Just posting to say how happy I was that a Frenchie beat the friggin’ poodles. Yea for smooshy-faced dogs! I always cheer for the Boston terriers (because two of them own me), but they never, ever make BiS because of the stupid poodles. And sometimes the Bulldogs. But a Frenchie is like half a Boston, so I’ll take it (the other half being English bull terrier – Spuds Mackenzie/Target dogs). And he was a mighty fine lookin’ Frenchie. I kiss his smooshy face. :: snort snort snort ::

As for LVBoPeep’s comments about the herding dogs… My smooshy faced dogs were bred for pit fighting, like pit bulls. But it didn’t work out because BTs tend to be really sweet, affectionate dogs, people dogs, and are generally not interested in fighting.

There is no practical purpose for Bostons. That said, I agree with BoPeep in that there is really no way to fairly evaluate a good Boston from one trot around a ring. Bostons are all about personality – they are goofy dogs with a great sense of humor. Their markings are largely irrelevant. There’s no way to judge how clever or personable they are by watching them walk in a circle. Agility trials would be more their speed, I think. So I don’t think I will ever see a Boston make it to BiS, let alone win.

Thanks Dogzilla, and all of you can excuse my passionate hijack. If you want to watch sheepdog trialing, RFD-TV has been showing Horse & Country, which has been showing UK sheepdog trials. In fact, today at 6:30 PST they are running a half-hour segment, another one tomorrow, then more (I think they are going through the Irish, Welsh, Scottish and English Nationals) at 8:30 am and 11 pm tomorrow.

Dog-lover without television access here, so won’t be watching.

If I were, I’d be rooting for either the Belgian Malinois or whichever was the the pit-bulliest looking individual of the various pit-bull breeds in the show (whether that one were an APBT, a Staffie or an AmStaff) for BIS, because Mals and pits are among the finest kinds of dogs there are. Not that any such dog is ever gonna take Westminster, though.

DH dug out a letter I wrote to him when he was in Gulf War I where I was mortally offended that the damn POODLE had won. I like the smooshy faces, too.

Didn’t see it last night but a friend tivoed it. Hope to see it soon. Go dogs, go!

Well a couple years ago the Colored Bull Terrier won BIS, I wonder has an AmStaff or Staffordshire ever won? I liked how tonight when they were introducing the Staffordshire Bull Terrier, they mentioned how it was noted for it’s love of children.
ETA: Checking the records on the Westminster site, nope neither of those breeds has ever won. They really do love the Fox Terrier though. It’s won 13 in total.

Bah, I knew as soon as the Scottie appeared on screen that it would win BIS, even before it won the terrier group. I was watching some other dog show last year and I remember seeing the same dog (Sadie) win. She’s cute and all, but I always root for the bigger *doggier *type dogs. Of the final 7 I wanted the Dobie to win.

Yay! The Scottie won! :love:

And Scotties are “doggy” dogs!

I have wanted a Scottie and a Westie since the Black and White Scotch ads in Time in the 60s.

My dogs are not young, but my daughter’s are, “Fat Boy” is a Bassett/English Bulldog cross. Her “Little Girl” is an American Bull Terrier, and I have never fallen in love with a dog as I did with her. Little Girl cut her paw and she ditched Fat Boy on us so he doesn’t spend too much time playing Doctor Dog on her so she can heal.

Fat Boy has the soft fur of a Basset and the thick skin of a Bulldog, so he’s very cuddly, though having a matched pair of a Scottie and a Westie would be so adorable I might stop breathing.