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What a difference a newf makes!

Newfoundland Health Group Speciality, 26 & 27 September 2009

ORGANISED BY the Newfoundland Health Group, this unique two day event aimed at everyone interested in the Health issues which affect Newfoundlands and other Giant and large breeds. It was a HUGE success, writes Kath Brown.

The group consists of Newfoundland enthusiasts dedicated to improving knowledge and understanding of health issues in Newfies and other giant breeds.

An entrant in KC Good Citizens

They maintain a website – The weekend was loosely centred around talks by leading specialists in Dermatology, Cardiology, Oncology and Orthopaedics but the Health Group didn’t leave it at that – there was so much else going on! Importantly, Echo Doppler clinics were run by recognized cardiologists Sarah Smith and Vicky Ironside on both days (at a greatly reduced price) and it is encouraging to note they were both kept fully occupied all day and still had to work overtime!

Drs Neil McEwan & Jo Dukes-McEwan before their respective talks on Skin & Hearts.

Sandra Constable very kindly offered KC Good Citizen Bronze Award tests in the morning and the familiar green and white rosettes were much in evidence and in the afternoon after the talk everyone was invited to enter a Match and then to watch a Supermatch judged by Lindsay May between leading UK Champion and CC winning dogs and bitches. Despite the fact that everything was very light-hearted, they put on a real spectacle for us and – dare I say it – showed us how it should be done when you take your showing very seriously!


Results were as follows : Match judged by Jane Keeves. Winner of Match: Ratter’s Seafar Mambo; Best Puppy in Match, Hobbs’ Alphabear Thunderstruck. Supermatch judged by Lindsay May Supermatch Winner Springthorpe’s Darkpeak Raging Storm at Millthorpe and Res Supermatch winner: Evans’ Ch Abbeydore Sea Fiore .

Best in Supermatch with judge Lindsay May.

In the evening a superb meal was dished up by Lizzie et al of the Chasewater Newfs, followed by bingo (M.C. Vin Whiting in his usual form!), ‘every one a winner’ raffles and quizzes (score Chasewater won 2, Canis Major won 1 – sorry guys!) presented by Brian Woodhall. Rumour has it some people still had enough energy to go next door to the Sailing Club and drink half the night away – don’t know where they get the energy from myself!


All four weekend speakers were full of praise for the many Newfoundland owners and breeders who are working hard to improve health, and it was so fascinating to share information with the owners of other breeds like Mastiffs, St Bernards & Leonbergers.

Gerry Poulton talking 'Cancer in Dogs'

The background events on Sunday included a ramble round this superb water park and Level 1 Draught Tests most efficiently run by The Southern Newfoundland Club . This gave novices a chance to have a go at carting.

The event as a whole was only possible because of generous financial support from the Kennel Club Charitable Trust, Northern Newfoundland Club, Southern Newfoundland Club, Scottish Newfoundland Club and Newfoundland Club of Ireland. In addition there were many private donations and also superb gifts of prizes and auction goods including a Copenhagen plate from the Emerald Isle Newfoundland Club .

BP in Match with judge Jane Keeves

And lastly, can I thank the real heroes of this event – people whose commitment and love of the breed enabled them to put in months of work and effort to produce this superb event – and managed to make it fun as well. To the people who didn’t take advantage of their labours – you missed a good’un!