AS A NEW YEAR APPROACHES …
It is difficult to believe, while sitting here in 100-degree weather, that when you receive this issue of the AKC GAZETTE, the national specialty will be over and we will all be in the spirit of the holiday season. It is a time of year for reflection. Let me share some thoughts with you.
I have often wondered why there is so little communication among people with the common interest of Bulldogs. We all have heard the stories and rumors about crippled dogs, vicious dogs, dogs with bad eyes and throats and other faults. It would be so much better for the breed if we were able to discuss such problems openly and constructively.
Maybe people are reluctant to discuss their experiences and problems for fear that they will become the subject of gossip. Some get malicious satisfaction talking about the problems of others while covering up their own. This attitude does nothing to help the breed. Maybe in the new year, breeders will be willing to speak openly about their problems without fear of being maligned. Only through honest discussion can we eradicate problems. We have to accept the fact that if you breed long enough you will get some problems. Perfection has yet to be born. The important point is not to repeat your mistakes.
There are many new faces in Bulldogs today and it is good to see these hard working, enthusiastic people involved with the dogs. It brings back memories of when we started going to shows. Our experiences were good. It wasn’t just the showing, but also meeting new people with the same interests. While we may have had disagreements on dogs, they never interfered with our friendships. We looked forward to every show not only for the points we might get, but for the people we would surely see at the shows. I will always be grateful to the dogs for the good friends that I made through this association.
Successful breeders of the past knew that the strength of a kennel is in its bitches. The best advice you can give to a serious newcomer is to buy the most structurally sound bitch he can find. She should be sound structurally and in temperament. This is not as easy as it sounds. These top bitches don’t grow on trees, and a knowledgeable breeder will not let one go to anyone who simply calls himself a breeder. For that matter, good breeders don’t grow on trees either –
I want to wish you all a happy holiday season. May your new year be blessed with good health and good friendships. For those of you who have had your share of sorrow, I wish you a year of renewed joy. For those of you who had a good year, I wish you another.
Amelia Averil, 8 Willow Brook Rd., Hillsdale, NJ 07612.