February 5th 2018
With the first 2 Championship shows of the year out of the way, attention now turns for some GWP owners to Crufts – we are on the Gundog day on Sunday 11th March. Cruft’s is a large commercial affair, which means that the public are charged to enter and docked dogs cannot attend the show (virtually all other Championship shows have now changed their entrance fee policies to benefit the exhibitors with docked dogs). As always, this excludes many of this year’s top winners as the only docked dogs that can attend are now over 11 years of age – yes, it really has been in place that long !
The impact on the breed numbers at Crufts has been devastating over the years (as most GWP breeders continue to dock this working breed and is still a mandatory requirement for registration in the breed’s homeland, Germany). This year the entry is only 5 dogs and 11 bitches, less than we get at a normal Championship Show, so if you want to see the breed, be on time.
The GWP Club has organised manning the discover dogs stand with a variety of GWP’s, both docked and undocked, throughout the 4 days of Crufts, so you can still head over there and meet the breed.
On the Open Show front, some big wins for the breed.
Maura and Seamus Gettings report from Ireland that they have had some super wins with their Junior bitch, Prudence (Beechillawn Super Smashing Great Jnr Ch).
At Dublin Cocker Spaniel All Breeds Show in Dublin. She took BOB and Group 2 in a strong FCI Group 7 under judge Tracey Douglas. Then, the next day at JHA All Breeds Show she took BOB and another Group 2 place under judge, Miss Ruth Byers.
On 4th February, at Mayo and District Open Show. Prudence this time went all the way, taking BOB and the Group under judge Mr Alec Stewart, then winning Best in Show under judge Joanne Mullen.
Closer to home, this weekend we had a good entry of 8 GWP’s at Merseyside Gundog Open Show. Maxine McCullough with George (Sh Ch Kimmax Kurious George) won BOB and then went on to win Reserve Best In Show, just pipped for the top spot by Mark Sanderson and the excellent Bracco Italiano, Eric (Owlspoint Trouble at Mill).
Not to be outdone by my wife, I handled my 8 month old puppy bitch, Ana (Kimmax Koz I Kan) who showed her little socks off and not only won Best Puppy but also took Reserve Best of Breed, going on to win Reserve Best Puppy in Show.
On an entirely different note, we heard from Jann Baker on Totally GWP yesterday about her young ‘Fletchling’, Gus, bred by Maura and Seamus Gettings.
Gus passed his Level 2 of his Lowland Search and Rescue Dog qualification with flying colours. Nice to see the breed using their incredible tracking abilities to locate missing people. We look forward to hearing more of Gus’s progress.
On Saturday 10th February, Dick White Referrals are running a one day seminar on ‘Health Issues for HPR Breeds’ – places on this event (which is located in Cambridge) are £15.00.
The day includes talks on Epilepsy, Heart Muscle Diseases and Laryngeal Paralysis as well as a tour of Dick White Referrals facilities. GWPC members may remember that it was this clinic that helped with the emergency treatment appeal for the GWPC Rescue dog ‘Bella’ last year.
Unfortunately, this event has not been well publicised and registrations officially closed yesterday, but if you are interested contact Kirsty Thompson at firstname.lastname@example.org and you may be lucky. Maxine McCullough will be attending on behalf of the GWPC Health Committee, so we will pick up any relevant information of interest to members.
The GWP Club are forging ahead with two major initiatives.
• Firstly, the GWP Club is launching a new Health Initiative on their website that has been under development for some time, including a new on-line health survey for GWP’s (open to members and non-members). It is hoped this will encourage owners of GWP’s with health problems to come forward so we can build a factual picture of the breed’s health. A key focus is Epilepsy (which is also the focus for our breed as part of the GWPC’s sponsorship of the Animal Health Trust/KC Genome project).
• Secondly, the GWP Club is to form a new role for a Working Activities Co-ordinator to assist the GWP Committee in organising field training and ‘have a go’ working events for GWP owners interested in working their dogs but not sure where to start. We also want to do more in tracking and other activities in which our breed excel.
Finally, a reminder to all GWP Club members that the GWP Club AGM is on Sunday, 18th March 2018 at Middlewich Community Centre (only fully paid up members may attend).
GWPC membership fees for 2018 are due now, so please check you have paid. If you are in any doubt about your membership status, just email the Membership Secretary, Wendy Oxman on email@example.com.
Peter F McCullough
m: 07515 964424