MY FIRST JUDGING EXPERIENCE
My first judging experience was Poole Canine Club in 1988. I judged three classes of Paps and three Variety classes. I gave BOB to the late Janet Cookson's lovely bitch, Melchester Francessca (Bred by the late, Madeline Wheeler).I was asked to judge prior to that, but I firmly beleive that in order to judge any breed, you should have had some experience and in my case it was quite a few years, bearing in mind that I had my first show dog in 1971.
The article, below was written by Irene Robb & placed in the Dog World newspaper, in early March 2013. Many thanks, Irene for those kind words.
Just a week to go before we doggie folk converge on mass taking over the NEC. How is it at Christmas Crufts always seem a million miles away and then hey presto before you know it the realisation has dawned Crufts is here and we are nearly a quarter way part through the year. Okay
did I really miss something on the way or was it by the speed of light.
Crufts to me has always been the beginning of the hamster show wheel, jumping on and pedalling like hell to keep up with the shows. Along the rollercoaster you may trip up or even jump ship on occasions but the inevitable the wheel keeps turning at a fast rate of knots. You just hope by the end of the momentum you finish in one piece, no bruised knees and are able to look back and say I enjoyed that ride.
So here we are preparations at frenzy level and last minute training in full swing. Hopefully, but not probably trying to get earlier nights in readiness to combat the stamina regime for the early start and long day ahead.
So what do we have in store this year? Firstly we have breed specialist Sue Stanbury of the Inixia affix taking centre stage for the Papillon ring. Many of us need no introduction to this lady‘s credibility within the Papillon world and are absolutely delighted that through her hard work in the breed she has been bestowed the honour of judging her beloved Papillons / Phalenes at Crufts. However many newer people in the breed will not realise the journey that it has been taken to get to these heights. When Glenn and I first came into Papillons over twenty years ago it was considered you were a newbie even after ten years and just beginning to learn your craft. People just beginning the journey then had huge respect for the top kennels that they personally held in esteem and awe, very often having to pluck up courage to speak or ask a question and yet there was great friendship and social atmosphere. I will always remember sitting at the ringside watching the puppies with Evelyn Needham of the famous Marshlea Kennel. She would ask me what I thought was good, bad or indifferent. There was no knit picking or vengeance but just an educational generalisation of the breed. Jean Banfied (Kingshaven), Carolyn Roe (Sunshoo), Sue Stanbury (Inixia) and Pat Munn and of course Pat’s Mum Norma Staff (Ringlands) were all so instrumental in helping a newbie learn the trade to those people Glenn and I will always be so grateful. To this day I really value those shows.
I thought this week in my Breed Notes in the Dog World I would take the opportunity of walking the path that our Cruft judge has taken over the years. Learning from their aspect what made them today, a top Papillon breed specialist. So let’s begin the story.
Sue’s association with dogs began at the age of fourteen when she started working at a boarding/breeding kennels with Boxers & French Bulldogs. When Sue left school, she went to work full time at the kennels for a further six years. Luckily Sue had a very encouraging boss. She wasn’t allowed to have a dog at home so the boss kindly agreed that it could stay in the kennels with the stipulation that it had to be a smaller Toy dog. After saving every penny possible in 1971 at the age of fifteen Sue purchased her first dog, a Pomeranian. Hence the love of the four paws began.
The first introduction to the butterfly came on the scene in 1980 when she purchased a bitch from Kath Blayney (Palmosa). She then mated her to Helen Robinson’s Divelish Oliver’s Dragoon, which produced Inixia Sally Anne. Sally was a lovely bitch, but Sue’s children were young, which made it awkward for her to show. Sally was then mated to Coquetta Ricki Of Divelish (Carole Leat). Whilst this was going on and just before Sally was due to whelp Len Sue’s husband changed his job which meant Helen Robinson (Divelish) helped her out by having Sally and her dam at her house. At the time Sue was extremely grateful of her help and guidance.
This mating was delightful and Sue remembers crying when seeing the litter for the first time as it was the best she had ever bred. The litter was named Inixia Moon Drop Of Divelish and Inixia Duc Darcy Of Divelish, who won 2CCs & a res CC.
Fortunately Len didn’t stay in that job very long. They then moved to the house they have been living in for the past thirty odd years. With Sally back in the fold, she repeated the mating, which produced her first Inixia Champion Inixia Dare Devil. Since Dev, Sue has have made up or bred an incredible twelve UK Champions. Gained numerous cc’s and rcc’s over the years. There have been International Champions and overseas Champions in various parts of the globe.
Top awards such as Top winning Papillon for 1993 and Top winning puppy 1997 came Sue’s way. Taking the Papillon Butterfly Dog Club’s Top Breeder and Top Owner Kennel on many occasions.
Sue started judging at Open Shows in 1988 and her first Championship Show judging appointment was in 1996. Since then she have been privileged to award CC’s at quite a few Championship Shows, including three of the UK’s Breed Club Shows, one of which was the Papillon (Butterfly Dog) Club’s 80th Anniversary. Sue has also judged a specialist Breed Show in Japan and the Papillon Club of New South Wales’s, 40th Anniversary Show in Australia.
She finds it remarkable when people predict what a judge is going to do as Sue says she hasn’t got a clue until the dogs are in front of her. In the past she has been so perverse as to award a first CC to a six year old bitch and CC BPIP with BOB to a minor puppy. (I can vouch for the puppy as it was our 8 months old Ziggy and I remember being so gobsmacked, saying to Sue when she handed me the cc “really me”!) Both of these dogs became Champions. So Sue found two little gems.
On the administration side Sue has always been in her forte. She was founder and a Committee member of South Of England Papillon Club and has been on the Committees of the Papillon (Butterfly Dog) Club and is currently Chairman of South Wales Papillon Club.
The Puppy Register is very dear to Sue’s heart and initially she was instrumental in forming and kick- starting the Puppy Register and Papillon Welfare in all three clubs.
Over the years Sue has owned and shown Poms, Cavalier King Charles Spaniels, King Charles Spaniels, Chinese Cresteds, a Lowchen and of course Papillons.
My personal favourites that were lovely exhibits and gave Sue huge success were Ch Inixia Artful Andrew the extrovert black and white showman with super curtain fringing, Ch Inixia Super Ted a dainty, heart searching pretty butterfly and the lovely Ch Inixia Aureole who was shown by Margaret Unwin to earn many cc’s. Artful Andrew was the sire of Aureole.
This time last year Sue had to cancel her Crufts appointment. She had to have an emergency operation in October 2011 to have a tumour removed and then starting chemotherapy during March onwards. Sue decided that she would probably not be able to judge the Papillons to the best of her abilities so she declined the appointment. I’m sure it was not an easy decision to make, but she felt that it was the right one.
To everyone’s relief things this year are thankfully in a much better place. Enjoy your very special day Sue you certainly deserve your name to be on the horary list of Crufts judges.
At Ilfracombe & DCS where Jeff Horswell (Drakesleat) was judging Papillons and BIS Sue Stanbury had a super day taking BPIS with Inixia Cheeky Charlie. He also took G3 & BPIG & BPIS. What a lovely day for her youngster.
CRUFTS JUDGING 2012
I was due to Judge Crufts 2012, but unfortunately I had an emergancy operation in Octber 2011 to have a tuma removed and would be receiving chemopherapy during March, so I decided that I would probably not be able to judge the Papillons to the to the best of my abilities so I declined the appointment. It was not an easy decision to make, but I feel that it was the right one.
CRUFTS JUDGING 2013 (Posted on 3/4/12)
There has been a lot of speculation, as to who is judging Crufts 2013 and I was obviously very interested myself, for obvious reasons.
I was contacted by the WELKS Secretary, Mrs Sheila Jakeman, asking if I would be available to judge their show in either 2013 or 2014. I explained what had happened and the reason for my cancelling my judging appointment for Crufts, this year and that I was rather hoping to have Marys slot, but as I hadnt heard from the K.C. I wasnt certain. I said I would contact the K.C for confirmation and I would inform her, once I knew. I had thought of writing, but that would have taken a while so I decided to ring them. I got through to the Judges department. She informed me that they did all the shows accept Crufts, but offered to check the list to see who had been appointed and, much to my surprise, informed me that it was Mrs P. Munn judging.I must be honest here and say I wasnt too happy with K.C for not even thinking of asking me again, especially as I had expressed a wish to do so. Obviously, armed with this information I rang the Mrs Jakeman to inform her that I was free to judge Welks next year.
At this juncture I should apologise to all those that enquired, on the day of Crufts, as to whether I was judging next year, on giving them the wrong information, because, fortunately for me, one of the exhibitors, Sue Deamer spoke to Pat about it and she informed her, that wasnt judging it. She had been asked, but had to decline as she was judging Windsor that year. I also spoke to another judge, who told me that hed been approached to judge, but had a prior engagement.
As you can imagine I didnt know what to do. I tried ringing the K.C. but I presume they were at Crufts, because I couldnt get an answer.
Needless to say, I phoned the following week and repeated the information I was given at Crufts and the lady very kindly said that she would check, presumably with the powers that be! Apparently it is a select Committee that deals with Crufts, judging appointments. Imagine my surprise when the lady concerned, informed that the post of judging Papillons 2013 was empty and, if I would like to write to them, they would consider my application! I do not like messing Secretaries around, but as I hadnt signed the Welks judging application, I rang Mrs Jakeman to inform her of my changed circumstances. She was very nice about it and wisely told me to wait until I had received and posted the signed, Crufts application form. (I had already thought of that, given the circumstances of being given wrong information!)
Anyway, the reason for this long and winded monlogue is to say that, this morning, I have received official K.C confirmation that I am to judge Crufts next year, so can now, I am allowed to make public knowledge.(Their words!)
Ironically I wouldnt be doing so, had I not pushed it and mentioned it at Crufts. So, fingers doubly crossed, you may see me in the middle of the ring next year.
I have judged at Open and Championship Shows, many times, since my first appointment. Also Specialties Breed Shows in Japan & the Fortieth Anniversary Show In NSW Australia.
Here are some of the photo's taken in Japan.
Finally this is my Best In Show Winner. This dog may not have been the most heavilly fringed and furnished dog of the day, but his overall ring presence and movement had to be seen to be appreciated. One I would willingly have taken home.
Here are some photo's taken of some of the winners at NSW, Australia.
Please ignore the hat!
This is the Trophy, donated by our South Wales Papillon Club, for Best Member's Exhibit In Show, which I took over and awarded for the first time.