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Beating us at our own game?
The overseas ‘invasion’ continues!

Judge Robin Searle pictured here going over the BOB Basenji

Yes it’s finally happened! a dog not just bred from outside the UK, but bred, owned and campaigned from outside the UK has beaten the Brits in their own back yard. Am Ch Caitland Isle Take A Chance [ATC AFOO825CAN] has re-written the history books by becoming the first Australian Shepherd Dog to win a challenge certificate, the first Australian Shepherd Dog to win a Group outright at Crufts, and of course the first Australian Shepherd Dog to win Best in show at Crufts. All this on a ATC number.

Is dog showing in the UK going the same way as cricket, rugby and soccer? We Brits don’t even lead the way in darts anymore. Is no sport safe?

So how well did the foreigners do. Well not bad from what I see from the results. Myself a expatriate now living and showing Border Collies in Holland. I was at Crufts for two days, so I took a keen interest on the two days that I was there, on the Thursday Pastoral &Working day, and then the Friday Hound & Terrier day.


My breed comes from the Pastoral group so let’s start there. As we have already said the Best in show, Pastoral group and BOB Australian Shepherd Dog went to the Canadian-owned Am Ch Caitland Isle Take A Chance [ATC AFOO825CAN]. But what many of you may not know is that the Reserve dog CC winner in Australian Shepherd was also on a ATC Number. This time Ch Propwash Twelve OClock High [ATC AF00792USA] from the USA, owned by Mrs J Harrington.

Amazingly enough six of the dogs in this breed that were in the cards also had ATC numbers, along with three imports. So the overseas influence on this breed would appear to be very strong. Staying with the breeds from the land Down Under. the Cattle Dogs also had overseas attack as the reserve best dog went to the Finnish dog, Cattlefarms Soul Brother [ATC AF00633FIN] owned by Mrs M Dolmatoff.

It was the same in the Belgian Shepherds, Malinois Best of Breed went to the Swedish bitch Swed/Nor/D Nighthawk Andromeda [ATC AF00434SWE] owned by Ms K. Lindberg. So that was worth the long trip from Sweden.

In my own breed Border Collies there was no exception, though over the years we are used to overseas competition. Right back in 1991 both Dog and Bitch CCs went to New Zealand bred NZ, Ch & Sh.Ch. Clan-Abby Blue Aberdoone and NZ, Ch & Sh.Ch Francesca of Clan-Abby. Then ten years later the Australian kennel of Borderfame Heart N’ Soul took BOB in 2001 and the dog CC in 2002, although all were in UK ownership as Imports. This year was different as the BOB was on a ATC numbered dog. It was the turn of the Italians with their Australian bred It/Span Ch Glentress Lord of the Chat [ATC AE00677AUS] owned by Mr D Masini of the Borderbay kennels in Italy, handled by Selene Favretto and bred by Marilyn Adams, Glentress Kennel Australia, who was at Crufts to see her wonderful dog take Best of Breed

The Border Collies had a total of 19 dogs and bitches on ATC Numbers plus eight more overseas imported dogs & bitches that are UK Registered, five of the ATC Numbered dogs also getting in the cards.

In the Smooth Collies The reserve Best Dog came from Sweden Int/Nord/K Oneway’s Errol Flynn [ATC AF00862SWE] owned by Mr. M. & Mrs J. Hangasmaa & Savlund .

The Hungarian Kuvasz only had an entry of one dog for the judge Mr H ,T. Lehtinen from Finland to judge and that came from The Netherlands, so I think the judge travelled the furthest distance! That was Dut. Ch Magasztos Janos [ATC AE00254NLD] owned by Mr P & Mrs E van der Meijden.

This dog was Best of sex in 2005. In the Old English Sheepdogs ATC dogs took the BOB Dog CC and Reserve Bitch CC; the judge was Mrs J Bennett and she found her BOB in Int Ch Reata’s Cosmopolitan [ATC AC00646HRV] owned by Mr N Kanales from Athens in Greece. As I said the Reserve Bitch CC also went to a ATC bitch from Germany whose owner appears to be a Harry Potter fan, judging by the name of her bitch. Int Ch Helga Hufflepuff from Beatiful Highland [ATC AD00484DEU] owned by DR A & Mrs S Kirsch I had an e-mail from them saying they where over the moon with the result. Looking through the catalogue I counted seven ATC numbered dogs and bitches, all of which got in to the cards..

In the Welsh Corgis (Cardigan) judge Mr P. Clifton seemed to love the overseas dogs; his BOB went to the bitch Ch Grangefield Inquisitive [ATC AF00535USA] from Tennessee USA, owned by Mr F.J. Murphy. Best Dog went to Ch Blondie’s Noble Man [ATC AC00318DNK] owned by Ms S Conradsen from Denmark. There were nine ATC numbered dogs/bitches listed in this breed and three imports making 12 foreign dogs/bitches out of 76, 16% of the entry. In the Pembroke Corgis though it was only the Reserve Best Dog that went overseas to It/Int/Eur Dragonheart [ATC AG00077ITA] owned by Miss C Ceredi.

The Working Group also fell to ATC dogs as the group was won by the Bouvier des Flandres Swis/Ned C Gijs Santos from the Dogsfarm [ATC AC00517NLD] owned by H.E. & R. Zwoferink & Wohlgemuth, from the Netherlands. This dog has had a massive show career; he was 4th in the group last year at Crufts and he is European Ch 2004 & 2005. Reserve Best in Group also fell to a overseas dog, the Newfoundland Mister Skipper King of Helluland [ATC AF00512SVK] owned by Mr P 7 Mr B. Bigaerts & Siklosi from Hungary, bred by S & V Krockovski There were 10 ATC numbered dogs and bitches in the breed.

In the Alaskan Malamute the Reserve Best Dog was Int/Can/Am Onak’s This Is All About Me [ATC AF00305USA] owned by Ms J & Ms W Corr. Only three ATC numbered managed to get into the cards in this breed.

The Hovawart judge Mr P Dondina [Italy] certainty preferred the European type he found his BOB in NL Ch Lara van de Toverbergh [ATC CAC00733NLD] and his Best Opposite -Sex in NL. Ch Berry von der Teichlandschaft [ATC AF00808DEU] from Germany. His Best Puppy was also an ATC dog, Finya Palacowe Pieknosci [ATC APPLIED FOR]

Mr Stuart Mallard was judging Portuguese Water Dogs and he found his Best of Breed also in an ATC numbered dog, CH Smooth Da Pedra Da Anixa [ATC AG00103PRT] from Portugal.

I leave it to you to ask yourself, are the overseas dogs better than the ones bred in the UK? Personally I would not like to say. All I know is that I bring the best to the show, and I take the best home with me, regardless of what the judge may think. But if you just take the time to think of how hard it is for some of these dogs to qualify from outside the UK. Each country has only one show at which you can qualify and only four qualifying places per breed. Then if you think you have it hard travelling from say Glasgow to the NEC, try travelling from, say, Italy.

The logistics of it are enormous. I have friends who travelled from Italy to the NEC to show their dogs on the Thursday. They set off from their home near Venice on the Tuesday. After 14 hours drive they are at Calais to catch the train. After considerable difficulties trying to communicate with the ticket staff and a one hour delay while papers are faxed to DEFRA, the Pet Passports are said to be OK and the dogs can travel. They take the first available train then once in the UK find a Travelodge to get some sleep. Next day travel up to their hotel near Coventry. Just five hours drive due to road works and heavy traffic. Rest, freshen up the dogs and show tomorrow. Total time taken to get to their hotel - 26 hours.

These are fantastic achievements for all these owners, breeders and handlers to do the winning that they have done, congratulations!

Photo by Alan V Walker
BOB Irish Wolfhound Valerani's Conchobar Evil Enchanter judged by Ms C L Pinkney

Photo by Alan V Walker
Toy group 4 Abeloos-Devos, Roosens & Toivanen's Papillon Ch Connection Tri Symphony