Thursday, June 4, 2020

Breeder Interviews for ShowSight magazine 2020

As a breeder, exhibitor, and long time board member of the Barbet Club of America, Judy is instrumental in promoting the Barbet in the United States. Also involved with Whippets since 1985, Judy lives at Hickory Tavern Farm and is the delegate for the Western Pennsylvania Kennel Association.

Where do you live? What do you do “outside” of dogs?
Hickory, Pennsylvania. Gardening, cycling, boating, and our Maryland lake house take up our ‘non-dog’ time.

How has the breed’s recent AKC recognition affected you?  
Being part of the regular Sporting group has changed how much we are showing Barbet. Competing for real group placements and Grand Championships is much more fulfilling than our years in Miscellaneous. There is more awareness of the breed among dog people.

What special challenges do breeders face in our current economic and social climate?
The global pandemic has affected and limited our breeding plans although the market for pet puppies has never been stronger.

What definite signs of show-worthiness are you looking for in your puppies?  
I am always attracted to the wide, thick, square, substantial pups who have enough neck and a strong topline. In addition to all the pieces of conformation and carriage, I want to see a puppy who stands well over her feet and thinks a lot of herself. I spend most of my time watching the puppies loose in the yard and I am continually noting who stands out. 

What is the most important thing about the breed for a new judge to keep in mind? 
It’s important for judges to remember that the Barbet is a Sporting retriever and should not be evaluated solely on the hair. Under the coat the dog should have hard fitness, strong, sound skeletal construction, substance without coarseness, and an attitude of playful exuberance. The profuse coat should be the well-conditioned finish on a dog with smart carriage. 

What’s the best way to attract newcomers to your breed and to the sport?
I wish I knew the answer to this. I would love to see Barbet gain more serious breeders who can thoughtfully produce a consistent, quality type. 

What is your goal as a breeder? 
The perfect Barbet exists in my head and my goal is to breed a high quality, healthy, recognizable family of dogs who maintain similar type, carriage, attitude and conformation. I am pleased with how they’re improving as we go and each one of them has attributes that I value; the goal is consistently putting it all together in one dog. 

What is your favorite dog show memory? My favorite Barbet memory is winning the breed with Flynn (Ch. Hickory Tavern Wish Upon A Star CM DS FDC) under Jamie Hubbard at the first Barbet club show in Orlando. Otherwise, it’s absolutely Westminster 2020 with Bourbon winning the Hound group and Reserve Best in Show.