First let me thank the Club and the exhibitors for allowing me the opportunity to judge your show and your dogs. The entry was of good size, and it was a pleasure to go over the exhibits. The overall quality was if anything even better than when I last judged up here, and the depth of quality was also improved. Very few dogs showed any hesitation in being handled by me, and the exhibitors displayed good sportsmanship to me. Perhaps the most noticeable improvements overall in the breed were in eye colour (even though there is still plenty of room for further improvement), and movement, both in soundness and freedom.
It was a most enjoyable day for me, between judging and meeting up with so many people, many of whom I have known for many, many years, even if I have not seen them for some time. I wish I could have stayed longer to talk with exhibitors more after the show, but hope to have that opportunity at next year’s national specialty!
I suspect quite a few (including my daughter Daniella!) wondered why I put up different types for major awards. The answer is simple. I chose to put up the best quality Dalmatians of what I consider to be acceptable breed types, even if they were not all the style I would personally try to breed: however I would be happy to have the quality of any of these differing breed styles in my own backyard, were I currently breeding and showing. It is almost impossible to keep the quality of a breed or an individual bloodline within a breed up without using dogs of different (but still acceptable) breed types in your breeding programme at times to balance out any insufficiencies or faults within your own kennel lines. However, in all these Dalmatians I put up, I was looking for several important breed features.
First: moderation in everything but markings/coat. Whilst some dogs are eye catching, they do not all exemplify moderation, which is called for repeatedly in our standard.
Second: balance, with good proportions of length to height and length of neck to body, typical head proportions, with a happy demeanour and a level topline both standing and moving
Third: sound movement with freedom (not an easy combination, in many cases), and the potential ability to “go all day” at a moderate pace
And of course, a well marked coat, with a good depth of pigment, be it black or liver, and a clear white ground colour, with as few tick type spots as possible, preferably evenly marked, whether light, medium of heavy in spotting, though medium is always a big bonus.
Now to details:
- Ch Gentry Justa Rockstar: a 10year old black spotted dog with very good coat for his age, good angulation front and rear, slight drop over croup, good eye colour, good head , neck and neck set, excellent bone, fairly free and sound movement
- Gr Ch Starswept Just a Gigolo: a taller 12 year black spotted old dog in excellent condition, coat showing age, but an excellent topline, head and neck, neckset. Some age muscle wasting, but sound in movement, not quite as free.
Both dogs had excellent bone and markings (for age), and good , though different type.
- Sup Ch Paceaway Kold Kash: nearly 10 year old black spotted dog in excellent condition, not as tall as 2nd dog, marginally long in body but with good depth and length of chest, excellent neck and neck set, topline, good head and eyes, bone and angulation front and rear, free moving, balanced movement, clear behind but a little loose in front. Realised after show this was dog I gave challenge last time I judged here: he is still an excellent breed type!
- Gr Ch Starswept Scottish Sovereign AI: a 7 year old black spotted dog also in excellent condition, taller, excellent neck and neck set, good head, topline a little less stable on the move and slight drop over croup, a bit straight in front angulation, excellent hindquarters, sound and balanced in movement but not quite as free as first dog, good pigment in coat but some tick spotting.
Open Neuter dogs
Three very different types of dogs
- Ch Neut Ch Hillofsilver Phoenix: a liver spotted dog, smaller, of the general breed type I prefer, evenly spotted, good coat, good head and eye shape and colour, though a little feminine in head, excellent and balanced angulation, excellent forechest, length and depth of chest, excellent topline through back, though drop over croup, balanced mover but not quite as free as 2nd dog.
- Telde the First Winters Song AI: a rangier black spotted dog, some ticks but base coat excellent, lovely head and eyes (shape and colour), good neck and neck set, good level topline, free in movement and sound, though front angulation not as good as rear angulation
- Hillofsilver Ulysses: a very tall black spotted dog, beautiful coat pigment and spotting, heavier in backskull, neck and neck set excellent, forequarters not as well angulated as rear, topline excellent on stand but not on move, movement sound and reasonably free.
Open Neuter Bitch
- 1 and Best Neuter: Telde Lottie Lenya: a well pigmented black spotted bitch with some tick spots, good body proportions and type, an excellent head, neck and neck set, nice bone, sound and fairly free mover, with a beautiful footfall on movement (hind paws landing where the front paws lifted off), good topline which was lost a little on the move
- 2 Starswept Snow White AI: a beautifully pigmented and marked black spotted bitch, of good proportions, excellent neck and neck set, muzzle a little finer, good topline and chest, balanced movement though not as sound as first, good angulation front and rear, a bit standoffish on the day
- 3 Neut ch Dimadal Jazzie Jade: a black spotted bitch with a beautiful neck set and head, topline excellent on stack but lost on movem, heavier markings, angulation balanced, movement also balanced but lacking in freedom
Baby Puppy Dog
- 1 & Best: Dumbledeer Dare to B Cool: a lighter but well marked black dog with a lovely outline for his age, excellent soundness and freedom, proportions, angulation, headshape, neck, neck set and topline, lighter in eye and needs some nose pigment to fill yet.
- 2 Gypsiemagic Bittersweet AI: a very young black boy, heavier in build, shorter on leg, strong bone, lovely dark eye at present (one of the best on day), good head and neck, neck set, angulation and topline, hard to assess movement properly as a real fidget on the day.
Baby Puppy Bitch
- 1 Gypsiemagic Angel Fire AI: a liver with smaller but even (lighter) spotting, excellent head, nice eye colour, excellent neck, neck set , topline and angulation, excellent movement front and rear, fairly free, good bone, nose needs to fill a bit, may develop a drop over croup
- 2 Dumbledeer Daring Harmony: a black spotted bitch with excellent coat and marking, neck, chest, and angulation, lovely head despite lighter eye colour, good bone, balanced free movement but not quite as sound as first today and did not hold topline on move as well, with a drop over croup
Both these pups are very pleasing.
Minor Puppy dog
- 1 Kirindal Happy Jester: a beautifully marked and pigmented liver with a good head, neck thickset and some loose skin, good neck set, excellent topline and tailset, bone, angulation, balanced, sound and free on movement despite some body roll on move. A very pleasing type.
- Darlinghill Hashtag Dot Com: Also Best Puppy and Res Cc dog: a beautifully marked and pigmented black dog of excellent type. Excellent head and neck, neck set, topline (though I would prefer him not to be overstretched by handler at times), tailset, excellent body proportions and size, very free, not completely clear front and rear in class though almost right in CC line up, tended to overreach a bit (speed increased this), would like a shade darker eye, but love his type, moderation in body and his quality.
- Gypsiemagic Arrow: a lightly marked less well pigmented black dog, with a good head and eye, good length of neck though a bit thick, excellent neck set, good bone and proportions, good topline and tail set, not free in hind movement and closer in front and hind movement.
Two taller, rangier black dogs with excellent coat pigment and great freedom of movement, a close decision
- Telde The First Cool Harmony AI: Lovely black pigment and spotting, a bigger dog. Beautiful head planes and proportions, leaner head/ cheeks at this age, lighter eye, lovely neck and neck set, topline and angulation. Balanced standing and on move, elegant. Spotted ears.
- Ottatella Moorish Idol: another big dog, heavier in backskull, medium dark eye, slightly thick neck of good length, excellent neck set and topline, good tailset, excellent angulation, good proportions of body, though a little long in loin, not as sound in movement, though both dogs had good freedom.
- Dimadal Obvious Obsession: a well pigmentd, heavier spotted, evenly marked black do with a pleasing head, excellent eck and neck set, topline and substance falls away slightly to rear though topline is held on move, tailset a bit low a very sound balanced mover, moderately free, good bone.
Australian Bred Dog
A very tight decision in this class of 6 dogs, plenty of quality through class.
- & Best Australian Bred: Sup Ch Krystaway Weekend Hustler: A lovely make and shape of liver. Lovely head, neck, neck set, topline and freedom, excellent proportions and angulation, good bone, pleasing low set hocks, movement slightly wide in front, showing his age, but an excellent type and quality.
- Ch Telde Guns and Roses: black spotted, another lovely type and mover, excellent head and neck, neck set, topline, proportions and angulation, slightly short in upper arm but movement sound and balanced and fairly free, tailset not as good as first dog.
- Telde Mac Heath: an excellent pigmented black, very free, balanced and sound in movement, did not hold topline as well as first two on move, very pleasing head, neck, neck set, and topline on stack, but carried tail a bit high on move. Good bone
Another good class with plenty of depth of quality in the five exhibits. Not enough places for the good dogs!
- Gr Ch Starswept Painted From Memory: also Dog CC & RUBIS: A medium sized, black spotted dog of lovely type and spotting, so balanced in every way, and excellent proportions, excellent head, neck, neck set, topline, tailset, forechest and chest follow through. Has freedom on the move, very balanced in movement and fairly sound. Good bone and feet.
- Ch Telde Magical Rupert Murdog: another lovely type, with balanced body proportions and lovely liver spotting, excellent topline and tailset (very slight drop over croup), chest, bone and freedom on move, with balanced movement, heavier in neck than first dog, a close decision.
- Ch Krystaway Minister of Magic: a well pigmented black dog of nice size, excellent proportions and good type, topline and tailset, neck good length but thicker, shorter in forearm, excellent freedom in movement, but wider in front movement, rear excellent.
The CC line up contained some different types. Most had excellent freedom of movement with reasonably good soundness out and back. There were four dogs in the line up I would like to own, some real quality here!
The Dog CC went to the open dog, who was smaller than some in the lineup but balanced in every way, and full of type. The reserve went to the Junior, a very similar type of dog to the Cc winner. The Australian bred dog was unfortunately showing his age, and gave way to the younger CC and Res CC winners.
Minor Puppy Bitch
Two lovely typey black spotted girls with promising futures
- & Best Minor puppy: Kirindal April Rose: excellent proportions and type, excellent angulation, freedom of movement, nice head, excellent neck , neck set and topline, chest,bone and feet, sound front and rear and free, but rolls a bit in movement.
- Starswept Holiday with Alice: lovely head, slightly finer boned at her age, excellent type, neck, neck set, topline, chest and movement with good freedom.
- Starswept Black Onyx: a smaller black spotted bitch, well balanced for size, nice type with a lovely dark eye, finer muzzle, excellent neck, neck set, topline and body proportions, sound and balanced on the move but not as free as those in previous class.
- & Best Junior, Res CC Bitch: Ottatella Melisange: a beautifully marked and pigmented black girl, larger and perhaps a little doggy but of beautiful type and quality. Excellent head, neck, neck set, topline, tailset, angulation, boning, chest and body proportions, has a dark round eye, and is both sound and free in movement. Not my usual type, but balanced, moderate apart from size and markings, impossible to ignore.
- Icspots In the Sky at Night: a typey black spotted bitch, some ticking, pleasing head, lovely neck, neck set, topline and tail set, good chest and bone, reasonably free and sound in movement, spotting less even in distribution than first in class.
- Dumbledeer Curacao: a lighter marked black spotted bitch with some ticking, very good proportions of body, lovely head and neck, neck set, good chest, topline good on stack but lost on the move, with drop over croup, fairly sound but lacked freedom on the move today.
Another very pleasing quality and depth of class of six bitches.
- & Best Intermediate: Gentry Some Where Over the Rainbow: a well marked and pigmented black, of medium size with a pleasing head, neck, neck set and topline, good bone, body proportions (though may be marginally long in loin) and good angulation, sound and balanced in movement with good freedom. Lovely spotted ears.
- Telde Diamonds Are Forever: Another well pigmented black girl, taller, with good body proportions and chest, bone, a nice head, excellent neck, neck set and topline, excellent freedom and soundness.
- Ch Paceaway Winter Chill: also a well pigmented black, less even markings, the best handled one in this class: lovely head and neck, beautiful arch in neck, excellent neck set, topline, length of chest. Good freedom on the move. Has a lighter eye and slightly lower tail set.
Australian Bred Bitch
Two very different styles of bitches, but both very good.
- Sup Ch Krystaway Glitterati: a smaller black bitch with a nice head, lovely neck and neck set and topline on the stack (lost topline a bit on the move), longer in loin. Balanced movement, with good freedom and soundness.
- Ch Texico Lonestar: A slightly heavier and larger liver spotted girl with good pigment, lovely head and neck, neck set and topline, good chest follow through, good tail set, free and sound but not showing quite so well for me on the day.
A class full of quality bitches of differing types, very tough to judge as all of good quality. A very tough class!
- & BIS, Bitch CC, Best Open: Ch Paceaway Wingz of Fyre AI: a compact , heavily marked liver with excellent pigment and ground colour, perfect arched neck and neck set, topline and tailset on the stack and on the move, beautiful body proportions, chest, angulation, good bone in proportion to size, pleasing head, type I love, movement free, sound and balanced, with absolute ease of movement and no exaggeration. Beautiful foot fall.
- Ch Coastdal Reminiscing CCD RA: A bigger, slightly doggie bitch, black spotted, excellent pigment light even markings, beautiful head, neck, wither topline, chest, and angulation, good bone. Sound, balanced and free mover, not my style but a quality bitch.
- Ch Icspots Under my Umbrella: A mid sized black bitch with a pleasing head, lovely neck, neck set, topline and tailset, chest and good bone. Both free and sound, balanced mover.
Challenge Bitch line up
Some lovely bitches, compact through to larger, good movers and different types, but full of quality from the minor to the open.
CC and BIS went to the open bitch , who was the easiest mover on the day, and one of the easiest I have ever seen, comparable with AM Ch Firemans Freckled Friend in the joy of watching her move. Small, but full of type and correct, without exaggeration, she filled my eye from the moment she entered the ring in the open class. It was so good to examine her and find her as good as the first impression.
The Reserve CC went to the somewhat large but glorious junior bitch, who is also an easy mover and a joy to go over.
RUBIS went to the lovely open dog, another one full of type, a better size than the Res CC bitch.
It is such a pleasure to find Dals of such quality, especially the two CCs and the two Res CCs, but also many of the other class winners or runners up. Keep up the good work!
Margaret van de Weg