The Bulldog Club of Hawaii was the first club formed in 1939 at Honolulu, Hawaii. That club was dissolved in 1952 due to lack of interest. At the time of dissolution, there were more Hawaiian Bulldog champions of record than any other purebred breed in the state of Hawaii. It wasn’t until August of 1969, strongly encouraged by Mr.Ernest Chang, that the present Hawaiian Bulldog Club (HBC) was founded. The HBC represents the entire state of Hawaii, inclusive of all eight Hawaiian Islands.
However, the recorded history of Bulldogs in the Hawaiian Islands dates back to 1911 with the imported International Ch. Country Model, purchased by Mr. Shu Sem. The first Bulldog breeder in the islands was Mr. Jack Kelly, whose first imports were from Canada, Austrailia and the U.S. Mainland. Other old-timers included Mr. Ed Todd and Mr. W.J. Warden, who imported dogs from England.
During the early 1930s and 1940s Elizabeth L. Kerns (Enelani Kennels, Reg.) from Waipahu. Oahu, imported champions from Canada and the United States. A revival of interest in Bulldogs began in 1944 when wartime restrictions were lifted and Mr. Ernest Chang, who imported Prince of Paradise, entered the Bulldog fraternity as a breeder/owner and later as a prominent judge.
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Mr. Chang was very active in the Bulldog Club of America (BCA) and served on the 1950 committee whose purpose was to reorganize and develop a new constitution and bylaws for the Parent Club. This led to the nearly 3,000-member organization the BCA has today -- eight regional BCA Divisions stretching from New England to Hawaii.
His son Malcom Chang recalls his father judging three BCA National Specialty shows. Best of Breed portraits from those specialties hanging in the BCA National Gallery of Winners are of International Ch. Vardonna Frosty Snowman, 1958; Ch. Bayside Doubloon, 1968; and Serenade’s Mack the Knight, 1974, the only non-champion Best of Breed dog in the winners gallery.
The first specialty show of the former Bulldog Club of Hawaii was held in 1945. The fourth show in 1948 had an entry 32 Bulldogs. It was held at Thomas Square and judged by Hau Hee. Best of Breed went to Ernest Chang’s Ch. Rodoco Prince of Paradise. Mr. Chang also won the Best of Opposite Sex with Ch. Morningside Memoria. Entry fees for shows then were $8, and $4 for additional classes. Catalogs were $1 each.
On May 20, 1973, the HBC held its first specialty show at Thomas Square in Honolulu. The judge was Ernest Chang. From a total of 21 entries: BB, Ch. Jo-Mars Red Minx Pal Joey (PJ); BOS, Ch. Samantha The Minx; WD, Senor Hoss, all owned by Marvin & Joann H. Turner; BW, WB, Bensu’s Mon Cheri Angelique, owned by Shirley Sumic and Rosina Morales.
The seventh specialty show brought well known breeder-judge Karl Dingman to the island. In 1981, BCA President Jimmy Vaughters was the specialty show judge. Well known breeder-judges like Dr. Saul Schor and Mrs. Marilyn Dundas have also been here to judge our specialties.
Ever present at the Specialty Show was a Mack Truck statue which was loaned to the HBC. Jim Gribbons was in charge of this enormous statue. He borrowed it and brought it to many shows.
Longtime members and Bulldoggers, Jim and the late Lily Gribbons hosted many meetings at their home in Halawa. It was through Jim’s attendance of the BCA National specialties and Lily’s correspondences with many U.S. mainland Bulldoggers, the HBC was able to attract several mainland judges who would visit the islands on their vacations and judge one of our shows.
The late Sandy Morin, past HBC president, owned and made Bulldog star, Winston, famous. He was one of the dogs bred by Jim and Lily Gribbons. Winston graced television sets with William Conrad in the hit show Jake and the Fatman.
After Sandi Morin’s death in October 1996, Sandy Reid gave new importance to Winston’s life. She would take him to work with her at their photography business where Winston would charm the customers and soak up all the attention he could get. Sandy Reid, past president now residing in Colorado, kept the HBC visible to the public. She, along with Julie Masuda, spent many Mother's Day weekends educating people about the breed at the annual Pet Expo in Honolulu.
The club's membership was 41 in September 2008. Club meetings are held monthly, usually the last Sunday of each month at 4 p.m. at Blaisdell Park in Aiea. The HBC holds a permit that allows dogs to be socialized at the meetings. The club does not meet at the park in November (Thanksgiving Holiday), December (Christmas Party) and January (Installation Dinner). On the last Sunday in October it hosts the annual Howl-O-Ween Fun Show. This event is held in the morning, followed by a potluck.
Thanks to longtime member Marion Follmer who supplied a vast assortment of old newspaper articles and show catalog information, and to Malcom Chang (son of Ernest Chang) who provided some of his father’s contributions to the breed.
Submitted by Laura Frederickson