Posted 29 September 2011 - 08:41 PM
What can we do to create a culture of honoring our Cairn terrier working dogs in specialties and other big shows?
By the way, most of the dogs in this class were champions and grand champions.
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Posted 30 September 2011 - 06:49 AM
I would love to see bigger Working classes though. A small change I'd like to see is allowing altered dogs to be entered in Working at independent specialties (like Veterans).
The culture thing is curious. I was off the board by the time the working dog/bitch classes were approved for Cairns and I was surprised to hear that rather than the rubber-stamping I'd expected the proposal to receive there was in fact vigorous debate and considerable opposition. Second-hand reporting, but I was told the objections seemed to align along general themes:
"You performance people already have too many awards - leave us our specialties"
"You'll have pets in the ring giving a poor representation of the breed"
"Trophies cost money"
Paraphrasing of course. And obviously not mine own opinions
Perhaps a Field Champion-equivalent title could be developed, which would set the stage for a Dual Champion title. I see these as complementary to conformation titles, not diminishing them.
Another way to chip away at the culture thing might be to get approval for what AKC calls special attractions. Just as a club can have a Parade of Veterans or a Rescue Parade, etc, a club could probably request a Parade of Working Dogs. A possible opportunity to highlight breed accomplishments along with working, performance, and companion event achievements. LIkewise it could showcase that the less showy of our dogs are also still brilliant companions and workers. And it would open the door to altered dogs, finished or not. If well presented, it could be educational, inspirational, and gently influential.
From our constitution:
I think highlighting and encouraging those natural working qualities is within the purview of the club.
The objects of the Club shall be:
(a) to encourage and promote quality in the pure-bred breeding of the old working terrier of Skye and the West Highlands now known as the Cairn Terrier and to do all possible to bring their natural qualities to perfection;
Posted 30 September 2011 - 03:40 PM
I, too would like to see altered CH's be able to compete in the working dog classes. I like your idea about the parade, as well.
Perhaps it will take one sanctioned club to get excited about and take advantage of the Working classes. (It IS a way for the dog to be SEEN outside the 100+ BOB entries!)
Is it possible for a benefactor (or group of benefactors) to contribute a traveling trophy that has a "wow" factor for Working classes? I would be certainly open to making a contribution.
The whole issue between earthdog and conformation shouldn't be incompatible. The words in the constitution agree.
The culture can turn to celebrate the correct (champion), working dogs, but it will take an intentional effort.
Perhaps cousin Border Terriers can serve as an inspiration. There was as much buzz around the working dog placements as select placements.
Also, in chatting with JoAnn Frier-Murza, Borders are in the process of creating Field Champion Titles. This one I understand, involves live hunting.
Posted 22 November 2011 - 10:00 PM
Posted 10 April 2012 - 11:55 AM