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Great reading!

Canaan Dog Breed Notes 2000

(As submitted by Ellen Minto to DOG WORLD and unedited)

I'm going to touch again on type as I've had some queries asking for an explanation of the term "collie-like" with regards to the Canaan Dog. The founder of the breed, Dr Rudolphina Menzel, had been studying pariah dogs when she was asked to develop a war dog for the Hagganah—Israel's first defence force. She had divided the pariah dogs into five types: Type I. Heavy extreme Type (Sheepdog-like); Type II. Heavy medium Type (Dingo-like); Type III. Light medium Type. (collie-like); Type IV (greyhound-like) and Type V. Small-grown Type (Toy-dog-like). Though there were, and are, Canaans of both Type II and Type III, Dr Menzel preferred those of Type III and encouraged the breeding of this type.

Dr Menzel defined Type III as "comprises those dogs most easily compared with a medium-coated collie, and varying in type between the collie and the Arctic sledge-dog. The appellation "collie-like" seems applicable to these dogs, who represent the aristocratic form of Type II. They are mostly square in build, with the belly "tucked-up" under the loins; they have nobler necks than Type II, often a typical mane, and (even when short-haired) a more or less bushy tail, carried, as with preceding types, curled across the back when in a state of excitement." (For more detail read "Observations On the Pariah Dog" by Drs R & R Menzel.) Problems of interpretation can occur when you take words out of context of the time in which they were written (in this case the 1940's). What did collies look like at that time in Austria (Dr Menzel's homeland) and which type of collie was she referring to…rough? bearded? border? Also it must be noted that she said they vary in type between the collie and Arctic sledge-dog and are square, whereas the collies we know are more or less rectangular in shape and not at all like an Arctic sledge-dog.

In Myrna Shiboleth's book, "The Israel Canaan Dog", there is a photo of Ch. Laish me Bnei HaBitachon (who many of us use as our model). The caption under the photo reads "One of the last dogs of Prof. Menzel's breeding, and the first Israel Champion. He was an example of the ideal type in the Canaan, and was a sire of great quality." A copy of the first and second edition of this book can be found in TKC library (I ensured they had a copy), and the second edition is still available for purchase. I can happily say that most of the dogs in this country are very much Laish's type.

In Myrna's explanation of the breed standard she says "The Canaan should never be overly heavy….However, the Canaan should also never be too light or fine in build and should not tend to the wind-hound type. He should always give the impression of solidity, compactness, strength and agility. A rangy or leggy appearance would definitely be considered faulty as would fine bone."

There is, and will probably always be, disagreement as to the interpretation of the standard. This is due in part to the fact that Dr Menzel never wrote a breed book and much of what we know comes to us through her associates, friends and colleagues. We are fortunate that many of them are still alive to share their knowledge with the rest of us.


Sarah Hemstock had a nice entry of 11 Canaans at the Nordic Show, with a few absentees due to some of "the girls" coming into season. Sarah's BOB was our Anacan Ziggy, who took home the Claywall trophy (donated by Mrs Zena Wallace) for his second year running, and her BB was our Kibutzer Kween In Kofyn. Best Puppy was Rob and Jan McLeod's Anacan Call Me Ishmael At Dunline.

Sarah and her mother, Jo Hemstock (Jolihem) were charter members of The Canaan Dog Club. Jo served as Treasurer until her terminal illness forced her to give up the position. Sarah also served on the club's committee in the early days, and has been endeavoured to learn all she can about the breed over the years. As a result she has a lovely manner with the dogs and it is a pleasurable experience for both dog and exhibitor to show under her.

Congratulations are in order for Alison Byrne and Ivan Kaye. Alison gave birth to their first child, a boy, on the 19th November. Despite being two months premature, the little boy weighed in at 5 lbs 12 ozs. Hopefully we'll be seeing him running around the show ring with their Canaan Dogs as a junior handler in not too many years!

Congratulations also to Rob & Jan McLeod. Their "Jacob" (Anacan Call Me Ishmael At Dunline) won a Puppy Group 2 at the Barry open show. A great start to this youngster's show career.

The Canaan Dog breed seminar held on the 26th November went over very well. Amongst those attending were Martin and June Freeman who said they had enjoyed themselves and had gone away with a better understanding of the breed. Richard and I are designing ways to make the seminar even better and have tentative plans to hold the next one in April 2001. Watch this space for further information.


As far as the Canaan Dog was concerned DISCOVER DOGS (4th & 5th November at Earl's Court) was once again a success. Richard and I set up the booth and, with our "Ziggy" and "Beulah", represented the breed Saturday morning. Alison Byrne and Ivan Kaye and their "Tallie" and "Livvie" arrived midday to give us a break and then help us finish out the day. On Sunday Patrick and Barbara Gold did the honours, along with their "Simba" and "Athtar" assisted by Doug and Jane Bateman and their "Sheba". "Sheba" and Jane also represented the breed in the main ring in the Utility Group parade. The booth generated a lot of interest, with several Israelis discovering their national dog for the first time. We had some lovely comments about our "beautiful dogs" and their "friendly and enthusiastic owners". It was a rewarding experience overall.

Not too much news on the show front at the moment. City of Bristol C.S. held their open show on the same weekend as Discover Dogs, giving classes for the Canaan Dog for the first time. Judge, Mrs Heather Stickley awarded BOB to Pam O'Loughlin's Tzel Schacmac At Caoilta. BOB at NORMIDCA under Mrs Pat Parkes was my The Lion of Judah at Anacan.

I just wish show secretaries would check with the breed club of numerically small breeds such as ours before scheduling classes. Canaan Dog exhibitors do not wish to have classes go unsupported and, had we been asked, we could have advised City of Bristol that this was not an opportune time to give us classes. There were four more exhibitors who would have gone to the show if not for the conflict with Discover Dogs. Jan McLeod also asked me to mention that the Dunline Canaans were unable to attend the show having picked up kennel cough (she believes at Midland Counties). If an exhibitor has any doubts about the health of their exhibit, please leave it at home and forego showing. How selfish to expose other animals to disease in pursuit of a placement!

Some more exciting news from Alan Gersman (USA) and his 8-year old "Isabel". Alan and "Isabel" were invited to the AKC National Agility Championships held the 3rd-5th November, as were 115 of the top agility dogs/handlers in the USA and Canada. Every dog had to have earned both AKC Excellent titles, plus have qualified in actual Trial competition during the past 12 months. "Isabel" had 6 clean runs, but lost a few marks on time, as Alan decided to take a conservative approach. In her first run on Saturday, Isabel became the first Canaan Dog to earn a Green AKC national qualifying ribbon and unofficially (what the scorer told Alan) Isabel finished the competition in 29th place, placing them in the top of the class. Well done!!

Isabella Zirri (Italy) reports that her "Norby", IT, Int'l, World 2000, Eur '99 Ch Velikaya's Lahatutan, has been invited to the "Collare d'Oro", an Italian all breeds Contest of Champions. The top dogs of different countries (USA included) and the best 100 Italian dogs of all breeds are invited. The Collare d'Oro will be held in Milano November 25th.

Last, but certainly not least, Lorna Hasting's "Amber" has presented her with a beautiful baby girl (yet unnamed) who was sired by my dog, "Gvir". "Baby" Hastings is a gorgeous red with white trim with beautiful, dark eyes and should prove to be a cracker of a Canaan. I look forward to seeing her in the show ring next year.


The Canaan Dog character/temperament assessment, administered by Neil Ewart of The Guide Dogs For The Blind Association on the 8th October, was extremely interesting. Five Canaans took part: our "Beulah" and "Ziggy", Doug and Jane Bateman's "Sheba" and Barbara and Patrick Gold's "Athtar" and "Simba". Mr Ewart carries out all his assessments at Tollgate and in Leamington in order to keep consistency in his testing. He does not vary his tests depending on the particular breed of dog involved on the day…all are evaluated exactly the same way, as if he were evaluating a potential guide dog. Mr Ewart assesses the dog's reactions to 1) friendly approach (adults and children); 2) other dogs; 3) confinement in small spaces; 4) unusual and noisy objects; 5) subways; 6) unusual obstacles; 7) crowds; 8) heights and 9) traffic. Mr Ewart told us that it is simply an assessment of the dog's acceptance, or otherwise, of everyday life.

With regard to our Canaans Mr Ewart wrote, "Walking in town, it was noticeable that they all showed varying amounts of concern over vehicles and trains, etc. However, each would quickly dismiss their concerns and they have an ability to totally disregard anything that does not actually hold any interest for them. I hope I am not offending anyone if I say I thought there were many similarities to Australian Cattle Dogs. I would like to compliment each of the handlers on their approach and their handling of their dogs. No dog showed a hint of aggression and it was quite evident that people felt confident that several were good ambassadors for the breed at Discover Dogs…..A bold statement to make, but from my observations of the entrants I would be reasonably happy to say that genetically they appear to be quite sound."

"Beulah" passed with flying colours, I'm sure in large part thanks to the good socialisation provided her by her previous owners. Neil put "Ziggy", "Sheba", "Athtar" and "Simba" together as he said "each showed its own degree of 'worry' over certain situations. These were not very serious problems and as stated before, all recovered very quickly." So overall, a very pleasing result!

The Canaan Dog Club's Judges' List Criteria has finally been accepted by TKC, with a huge thanks going to Mr Terry Thorn for the assistance he gave us in getting the wording right. The accepted criteria follows.

THE CANAAN DOG CLUB Approved Judges' List Criteria 2000 (All requirements in italics are Kennel Club policy.)

A3 List (Breed Specialists) Requirements:

1. Must have a minimum of 7 years judging experience in the breed and have the support of The Canaan Dog Club.

2. To have judged a minimum of 15 different Canaan Dogs.

3. To have bred and/or owned a minimum of 3 Canaan Dogs.

4. To have attended a seminar given by a Kennel Club Accredited Trainer, and passed the relevant examination on Kennel Club Regulations and Judging Procedures.

5. To have attended at least one breed seminar. or to have successfully completed a written test administered by The Canaan Dog Club to ensure that the applicant comprehends the Canaan Dog breed standard.

6. To have stewarded for a minimum period of 3 years and at 12 shows.

A3 List (Non Specialists) Requirements:

1. To have a minimum of 7 years judging experience in any one breed (to include 5 years in this breed) and have the support of The Canaan Dog Club.

2. To have judged a minimum of 15 different Canaan Dogs.

3. To have awarded CC's in at least one other breed.

4. To have attended at least one breed seminar. or to have successfully completed a written test administered by The Canaan Dog Club to ensure that the applicant comprehends the Canaan Dog breed standard.

5. To have bred and/or owned a minimum of 3 dogs of any breed when they obtained their 1st entry in The Kennel Club Stud Book (Save in exceptional circumstances).

B List (Breed Specialists Requirements:

1. To have a minimum of 5 years experience owning and exhibiting in this breed and have the support of The Canaan Dog Club.

2. To have attended at least one breed seminar. or to have successfully completed a written test administered by The Canaan Dog Club to ensure that the applicant comprehends the Canaan Dog breed standard.

3. To have judged at open and/or champ shows, and submitted to The Canaan Dog Club Secretary a list of these shows and breeds judged, along with their applications.

4. To have judged a minimum of 8 different Canaan Dogs.

B List (Non-Specialists) Requirements:

1. To have owned and exhibited any one breed for a minimum of 5 years and have the support of The Canaan Dog Club.

2. To have attended at least one breed seminar. or to have successfully completed a written test administered by The Canaan Dog Club to ensure that the applicant comprehends the Canaan Dog breed standard.

3. To have judged at open and/or champ shows, and submitted to the Canaan Dog Club Secretary a list of these shows and breeds judged, along with their applications.

4. To have judged a minimum of 8 different Canaan Dogs.

C List

For aspirant judges who have shown an interest in the breed and have the support of The Canaan Dog Club.

Meeting the aforementioned criteria does not mean automatic acceptance onto The Canaan Dog Club's Judge's List. The applicant will still have to be voted on by the Committee and receive a majority vote in favour in order to be placed on the list.

Don't forget DISCOVER DOGS on the 4th and 5th of November at Earl's Court!


Recent wins in Canaan Dog classes seem to have ruffled some feathers and the question of colour is being used as a means of attack. Contrary to what has been written in another set of breed notes, judges DO know what colours are acceptable and are judging without colour prejudice. If one thinks a dog is of better type than another, that is a subjective opinion. To say they lost out it competition because of colour is untrue and insulting to the winning dog and the judge.

A Canaan Dog, as any other breed, should be judged in its entirety and not on just one point. The Canaan Dog should be well balanced, with correct movement being essential. One should never judge a Canaan just on tail carriage, or colour, or feet, as some judges have done. I believe that MOST judges on the Canaan Dog judges' list are judging the entire dog and, again contrary to what this other columnist stated, dogs of the different colour-patterns are winning in the ring….a fact easily gleaned from reading the show results.

With regard to the erroneous remarks, made by the same writer, as to why black and tan is considered undesirable, Dr Menzel (the "founder" of the breed) never said it was because the colour "brings with it other faults." The FCI standard of 1966 states; "Grey and black and tan are not desired, to emphasise the difference to similar European sporting breeds" The black and tan colouring was considered undesirable because the colouring was too reminiscent of many of the European breeds (i.e. German Shepherds) at a time when Dr Menzel and her colleagues were trying to get the breed recognised as a unique breed. This had nothing to do with so-called "impurities" in the black and tan Canaans.

I quote from Myrna Shiboleth's book "The Israel Canaan Dog": "Black-and-tan is apparently a definite genetic factor in the breed and has appeared in the offspring of parents of all colours. In most instances where two light coloured parents produced an apparently black or black-and-white puppy, this proved in fact to be a case of the black-and-tan factor."

As further proof of what I say I now quote from an interview Dr Dvora ben Shaul had with Dr Menzel in 1972: "Dvora : And colour . . . a number of breeders refuse to recognise any Canaan that is tri-coloured. Prof. Menzel: To me all colours are acceptable if they are colours naturally found in the Canaan family. This omits gray, which usually represents a mixing of the bloodline with some other breed. When gray appears on a Canaan one must be highly suspicious of its purity. In general, a tri-coloured colouring in a Canaan is definitely acceptable in my opinion." (Underscore added by myself for emphasis.)

As in any breed, common sense would dictate that any fault should be weighted as to its seriousness. Surely an aesthetic fault, such as colour, should not be weighted as heavily as lack of undercoat, incorrect movement, and faults in structure---all necessary for survival.


I received a sad note from Elizabeth de Boisgelin and Alan Hebden today telling me that their beloved Canaan Dog, Kensix Shivee died peacefully in their garden on the 7th of September. "Shivee" was out of a litter that was bred in Israel and whelped in quarantine 29/05/1986. A long-coat, "Shivee" was never destined for the show ring, but he gave his owners a loving relationship that is far more precious than any rosette. Elizabeth, Alan and "Shivee" were regular attendees at the annual Inter-Club Rare Breed Match, hosted by The Canaan Dog Club. Though they couldn't participate in the match itself, it was the one time of year they got together with other Canaan owners and showed off their boy. Elizabeth and Alan truly adored "Shivee" and are devastated by his loss. We send them our deepest sympathies.

On a much brighter note, congratulations are in order for Alison Byrne and Ivan Kaye as their Talither Bat Me Babrees won BOB at the Utility Breed of Wales Association Open Show under judge David Close.

Neil Ewart of the Guide Dogs for the Blind Association has agreed to do a temperament assessment on a group of 6-8 Canaan Dogs on the 8th October. Mr Ewart performed this service for the Canaan Dog owners several years ago and, I understand it was quite interesting. I will give a report on the assessment, and what is involved, after the event. Should be interesting reading.

The Canaan Dog Club of France is just getting off the ground. Richard and I applied for membership when we were at the World Show, as we like to give support to such an endeavour. There are very few Canaans in France at the moment and a club is needed to "get the word out". The president is Mr Olivier Broutin. For those interested, he has put up a website on http://olivier.broutin.canaan.dogbreeders.com/


Darlington offered Canaan Dog classes for the first time this year. However, due to the fuel crisis, going to the show became a real adventure. Richard and I left the house at 3:00 a.m. with, what we hoped would be, enough fuel to get there, but we weren't sure we would be able to get back home. Jill Terry and Pam O'Loughlin carpooled, but a ring round found that everyone else was unable to get petrol. So out of the 11 Canaans entered, only 6 were able to make it.

The weather was cool and rainy. We had most of the judging outdoors, but when the rain got too heavy we went inside to our wet weather ring only to have the Staffie people come rushing in and pushing us out of our ring! Our judge was incredulous at this behaviour, but we've had this type of thing happen to us on more than one occasion I'm sad to say. After a bit of confusion we finally were able to find a ring to complete the judging. I am pleased to say that Mr Parkes found his BOB in our "Digger" (The Lion of Judah At Anacan), which now makes "Digger" unbeatable for the Dog World/ Pedigree Chum Top Canaan Dog Award---his 4th time! BOS was our "Beulah" (Kibutzer Kween In Kofyn) and their son, "Remy" (Anacan Masterpiece) was Best Puppy---a real family affair.

Mr Ron Parkes chatted with us after the judging and told us that he had served in the army in north Africa and the Middle East and had seen Canaan-like dogs while there. The dogs used to follow them around, scavenging in the rubbish and being thrown titbits from time to time. Mr Parkes told us that you could always tell when a sandstorm was brewing as the dogs would dig a shallow trench to lie in, ears folded back, in order that the wind and sand would blow over them. Mr Parkes said that he was quite familiar with the terrain the Canaans come from and with the correct conformation and movement needed for the breed to survive. He and his wife had also attended one of the breed seminars given in the early years of the breed club.

The committee, stewards and groundsmen at Darlington were brilliant as they helped keep exhibitors informed as to what petrol stations had fuel. They were helpful in every way and deserve a big thank you!

Due to the fuel crisis it has been difficult to get people to commit to being on a team for the Canaan Dog Club annual Inter-Club Rare Breed Match which was due to be held 1st October. Therefore I have been asked to announce that the match will be postponed to a date to be announced.


The Canaan Dog Club Fun Day was a great success, thanks in part to the landlords of the Peacock Inn who allowed their garden to be used as the venue. Just as the games were about to start, a light rain shower began but just as suddenly ended, never interfering with the merriment. There was a couple from Yorkshire who were visiting friends in the village and had decided to stop in and see what was going on. We lent them "Beulah" so they could participate in the games and they told us it was one of the most enjoyable afternoons they had in ages. They were also very impressed with the dogs. The highlight of the event is the fancy dress competition as it always gets a laugh. What wonderful dogs these Canaans are to let us humiliate them so by dressing them up in silly costumes just to make us happy!

Entries of Canaans at the shows, which give us classes, have risen dramatically this year, which is very gratifying. However, I think I need to address a few comments I've heard made by various judges with regard to size and substance as there are apparently some misunderstandings. For example, one judge commented that he thought it was wonderful that the breed was getting more "elegant" in appearance. As "elegance" is not a word used to describe a Canaan in TKC interim standard, the FCI standard, nor any other CD standard, I fail to understand the judge's comment or why he would be looking for elegance in the breed. Another judge commented that one bitch, which is 20-1/2 inches, was "too small".

The Canaan Dog is a medium-sized (not large) dog possessed of athletic agility—which I liken to a runner, a track star. As such it should not be coarse, nor should it be over-refined. Well-balanced is the operative word here. A tall leggy Canaan with inadequate substance is no more correct than a smaller dog with short legs and of too heavy a build. The standard allows a Canaan to be anywhere between 20-24 inches at the shoulder. Though bitches tend to be smaller than dogs if the animal's height falls within the parameters of the standard, and it is of sufficient substance to look well-balanced, how can one say the dog is too small? Obviously the converse is also true. The important thing to remember is that the Canaan Dog is a pariah dog. It should look like it has the potential to survive in the desert. Thus soundness and correct movement are essential. Correct undercoat is essential. Lack of exaggeration is essential. Marked distinction between sexes (bitches looking feminine and dogs looking masculine) is very desirable. But elegance is not a consideration and one height is not more desirable then another AS LONG AS it falls within the standard and the dog is well-balanced and well-proportioned.


This is the first time in 5 years Richard and I could not make the Welsh KC show which was a shame as it is such a nice show. Canaan Dogs are shown there in AVNSC, but are always the only breed exhibited, so it's almost like having breed classes. This year there were 5 Canaans entered. Judge, Terry Nethercott, awarded BP and Best AVNSC to Rob & Jan McLeod's Anacan The Israelite At Dunline ("Abraham"). BOS was Michelle Powell's "Kelsey" (Babrees Bright Blaise). Well done to both dogs and owners!

Heard from Bryna Comsky (USA) that her CH Hadar Ha'Aretz Happy Paws won Group I at the Pontiac KC Show on August 19th under Judge Mrs. Chris Walkowicz. This is "Paws'" fourth Group win this year for a total of 31 lifetime Group placements---that is in just over one year! What can you say but amazing!

On a sad note, on the 19th August, Gina Pointing (founder member and first secretary of The Canaan Dog Club) had to say her final goodbye to her lovely "Golda" (Queen of the Orchid at Mornavega). "Golda" would have been 12 years old on the 22nd November.

Gina and "Golda" did much to promote the breed in the early years. It was "Golda" and Marjorie Cording's and Mary MacPhail's "Fiver" who flew the flag for the breed with distinction when there was no one else out there showing on a regular basis. I had the pleasure of seeing this old girl strut her stuff in the show ring one last time only this past May at the Bath Champ show where "Golda" once again qualified for Crufts.

Gina is heartbroken, as are we all who knew "Golda". Richard and I are pleased to have her daughter, "Jasmine", and her granddaughter, "Sheindela" and some great-grandkids. Through them, "Golda" will live on. You have our deepest condolences Gina.

They say imitation is the sincerest form of flattery. It seems that our International Canaan Dog Working Party has others also aspiring to put together a global database and publish an international Canaan Dog newsletter. It can only help further the promotion and welfare of the breed and we're happy that the Canaan Dog fancy here has been such an inspiration to others.

If you have any questions or comments, I'd love to hear them.


At the Bournemouth championship show on the 12th August our "Digger" (The Lion of Judah At Anacan) took BOB and his daughter, Anacan Forever Amber, owned by Lorna Hastings, took RBB. Jill and Ian Terry's Layla Me Shaar Hagai was awarded BOS and her son, Tzel Schacmac Among Caolita, owned by Pam O'Loughlin was BP and RBD. It's a great credit to them both that the BOB and BOS are also being proven good producers by their offsprings' wins. I'm sure the Terrys were as delighted as Richard and I were. "Digger" then went on to be short-listed in the Utility Group by judge, Keith Nathan. To my knowledge this is the first time a Canaan Dog has been short-listed in the group on a championship show level in the UK. Thank you Mr Nathan for having the courage! Hopefully this is a first step towards the breed attaining a group placement at a championship show.

August 12th was a lucky day as Riikka Turunen (Finland) wrote to me that at Kemi's International Show that day her "Andy" (Fin CH Anacan Diplomat at Kirifix) was BOB and got his first CACIB! The next day she went to Joensuu's National show with "Andy's" year-old son, "Topi" (Kirifix King of Hearts) and he was BOB and got his second CAC! In Finland a dog cannot be awarded their 3rd CAC and their championship before they are 24-months old, so I guess "Topi" will just have to bide his time for a while. Congratulations!

Whilst at the Bournemouth show Richard and I had a chance to have a chat about Canaans with Zena Thorn-Andrews. Zena, looking very svelte and elegant these days, had just returned from a trip to Australia where she looked in vain for the Canaan Dogs. Ironically, even though the breed was recognised in Australia last year, there isn't one Canaan in the country. Yet, Zena told us, the minute one arrives there it is eligible to compete for its championship. At the moment the UK is the only place where a Canaan cannot compete for its championship. It really doesn't make sense.


Some more exciting news from Stateside. Sheryl Glass has a new AKC champion, Ch. Cherrysh My Klever Kyra, bred by Cheryl Hennings. "Kyra's" sire is AKC UKC ICDCA Ch. Bay Path's Amitz CGC and her dam is Briel's Hatikvah Bat Ariel ROM CGC. "Kyra" finished with all majors (wins of 3-5 points). Alan Gersman writes that on Sunday 6th August at an AKC Agility Trial in Little York, NY in the Excellent standard run (11 dogs competing) Lada L. (Max's Lada L.P Tiger Pooh, OA, OAJ) placed FIRST in Ex "A". 30 minutes later (15 dogs competing) Isabel (U-CD Briel's Isabel P Tiger Pooh, CD, AAD, OAC, OJC, OGC, AXJ, MX) placed FIRST in Ex "B". The (Excellent level is the top level of competition and is divided into "A"and "B"-- "A" for dogs that do not have an Excellent title and "B" for dogs that have earned 1 or more Excellent titles.) Later Isabel came back and qualified in EX "B" JWW for her QQ and the only QQ in the 20-inch class. "Isabel" is also out of Briel's Hatikvah, a bitch I bred when I lived back in New York. I'm certainly a "proud grandparent".

We all know that the dog fancy is quite a mixed bag of people who are "in dogs" for different reasons-- the social scene, ego trips and some even because they love dogs. One of the nicer aspects of the dog scene (that is besides the dogs themselves) is that it facilitates a breakdown of class barriers. The love of a specific breed will foster friendships and friendly acquaintanceships between people who have nothing else in common. This is especially true in a numerically small breed such as the Canaan Dog and receiving news such as that stated above is one of the results of this camaraderie. It's such a shame when jealousies and sour grapes enter the picture. If only people would remember why they got involved with dogs in the first place would a lovely world the dog world would be.

I have more details on at The Canaan Dog Club Fun Day on the 27th August. Mrs Hannah Thompson, manageress of Silverdale Kennels, will be "the judge" of all the 'events' (musical mats, egg and spoon race, fancy dress, etc.) This day allows all members of the club, along with their families and friends, to spend an afternoon of fun and games with other Canaan lovers. There is no charge to participate in the games and there are lots of prizes to be won. It will take place on the grounds of the Peacock Inn, Tysoe commencing at 1:30 p.m. I'm told to request prizes for the raffle table.

TKC certainly works in mysterious ways as we are now told that the Canaan Dog Club Judge's sub-committee must be made up of 75% CC judges. Pretty interesting directive as we ours is a non-CC breed.

I'd love to hear your news and views (even if they don't agree with mine).

So as not to violate the Data Protection Act, The Canaan Dog Club has not posted its judges' list on their website. However, it has come to my attention that their judges' list has been posted on some other websites. Please be advised that this was done without the CDC's knowledge or permission.

Jill Terry has sent me the results of the East of England show. Pam O'Loughlin's Tzel Schacmac Among Caolita was awarded BP, BD and BOS in AVNSC. At Paignton "Tzel" (pronounced "Zell") repeated his BP win and Lorna Hastings' Anacan Forever Amber won the PG class. Congratulations all!

Riikka Turunen (Finland) emailed me that at Mikkeli International on 23/7/200,under judge, Avi Marshak her INT, FIN, N & S CH Waltzun Romeo ("Rontti") was BOB and her "Liinu" (I don't know her registered name) was BOS. Marja Partanen's Kirifix King of Hearts (sired by Fin CH Anacan Diplomat At Kirifix) won his first CAC at just of year of age. Riikka's breeder's group had HP and was BOB.

From the USA Bryna Comsky writes me that her Ch Hadar Ha'Aretz Happy Paws has 27 career group placements as of the 6th July! It will be quite a while before another Canaan Dog beats "Paws" record. Bryna was also kind enough to send me the results of The Canaan Dog Club of America, Inc. National Specialty held on Thursday and Friday, June 15-16, 2000, at the Holiday Inn, Asheville, North Carolina. The judge was the well-known Dr. Carmen Battaglia. BOB was awarded to Ch Mad River Walk on the Wild Side, owned by Sandra Sailer and Cynthia Grupp. Best of Winners was the Winners Dog Hadar Ha'Aretz Mr. Spock RivRoc owned by Christina Miller, BOS was awarded to Ch Pleasant Hill Pretti Spiffi owned by Kristen Jackson and Donna Dodson, and BP was Yatsa Ha'Aretz DaySpring Oren owned by Parker Flowers.

I can remember traipsing around the showgrounds with my Canaan in the 1980's back home in the US and being asked with derision, "what is it"? When we started showing Canaans here in England 5 years ago we were often told at shows, "you can't have unentered dogs here", or asked "what kind of mix is it"? Now we get, "is that a Canaan?" It is gratifying to see how much the breed has achieved both here and, probably more so, abroad in the last few years. Well done to all who have crusaded for our breed! But we must not forget that we still have a long road ahead of us.


Ms Mary Deats presided over the Canaan Dog ring at the recent Newmarket Open Show and found her BOB in Jill & Ian Terry's Layla Me Shaar Hagai with their Babrees Benjamin D'Israeli taking Best Dog. Barbara Gold's Anacan Athtar was Best Puppy.

South Wales Kennel Association show was a real family affair for the Anacan dogs as the Canaan Dog judge, Mrs J Lynne Lovelock, awarded our "Digger" (The Lion of Judah At Anacan) BOB, our "Beulah" (Kibutzer Kween In Kofyn) BOS and to their son "Remy" (Anacan Masterpiece) RBD and Best Puppy! This is always such a nice show to attend as it has such a lovely atmosphere. This year's benching was super-- we've never had so much room!

It has been quite interesting viewing a video, taken by Lorna Hastings, of the Canaan judging at the recent World Show. Very few dogs had their tail up over their back on the move, and one champion bitch was far more wary of the judge than most of the youngsters in this country have ever been. We shall certainly show at least part of this video at our next breed seminar planned for the 26th November at the Polesworth Village Hall.

The Canaan Dog Club annual Fun Day will be held once again on the grounds of the Peacock Inn in Tysoe on the 27th August commencing 1:30 p.m. There will be a raffle, games and fancy dress competition. It is usually quite a laugh and great fun.

I'm in holiday mode now as Richard and I are off for a week's holiday in Tunisia for a well-needed break. When I come back I would love to hear your news and views.


Our trip to Milan for the World Show was quite an adventure. We started out early Tuesday morning and collected Lorna Hastings on our way to the Shuttle. Lorna had decided to come along in the hopes of finding a suitable "husband" for her Anacan Forever Amber. We arrived at Calais in 35 minutes (the Shuttle is just a brilliant way to travel) and we were off. Approximately 4 hours into our journey, all of a sudden our engine cut out and then smoke starting coming out of the exhaust. The only lucky thing was that we were only a relatively short distance from the entrance to a parking area. So with Richard steering and pushing from the front end and Lorna and I pushing from the back, we managed to roll the car into the parking area. When adding water to the engine didn't help, we phoned our breakdown insurance company and we eventually were towed to the next town (Chaumont) to a garage, which was closed by this time. Our insurance company arranged for a taxi and a hotel, but was unable to get us a hire car until 11 a.m. the following day. This set us back quite a bit as we had originally hoped to stop in Lyon for the night---3 hours further down the motorway—and then get an early start in the morning.

To top things off, Richard, who had started the trip, with what he thought was a cold, was becoming more ill by the moment. When we finally got on the road on Wednesday, Richard was struggling. The hire car, unlike our own, was not air-conditioned and we encountered temperatures of up to 35°. To top things off there was an Italian lorry drivers' strike, which we hadn't been made aware of, and we were detoured to the tunnel between France and Italy. We finally got through the tunnel and to Torino and then had to work our way up to Milan. We arrived at our hotel at 9:38 p.m. to be told that if we were not seated in the restaurant by 10 p.m. we wouldn't be served. So we made a mad dash to get the dogs walked and into our air-conditioned room and then to the restaurant, where we had, let's say, not the best meal I've ever eaten.

Next morning, exhausted (and Richard ill) we found our way to the Fiera Internazionale di Milano. It is a large exhibition centre, and because it was a Thursday, not very crowded with spectators. There was no benching, so had we not brought along our crates, we would have had a problem. Luckily someone told me we had to collect our envelope from the ring secretary, which turned out to contain certificates of attendance, our ring numbers, a commemorative badge and an armband holder.

The Canaan Dog was the third breed in the ring. We had an Italian judge, Mr Enrico Adinolfi, who spoke no English. Ring procedure was more or less the same, though some double handling was tolerated. But after all our trials, at the end of the judging, "Digger" was awarded Res C.A.C. and Res C.A.C.I.B. with a rating of "excellent". Richard and Lorna and I were so proud that the British Canaans had been well represented.

There were 20 Canaans entered, 5 absent. Full results follow:

MALE CHAMPION CLASS (3 entered, 1 absent)

1st - Barbadian CH (?) Zetan Me Shaar Hagai, bred by Mryna Shiboleth and owned by Terry Bagley (Canada

2nd - AKC CH Bay Path's Amitz, bred by Sandra Fournier and owned by Cheryl and Jerry Hennings. (USA)

OPEN MALES (5 entered, 1 absent) 1st - International CH Velikayas Lahatutan (CAC & CACIB), bred and owned by Isabella Zirri (Italy)

2nd - The Lion of Judah at Anacan (Res CAC and Res CACIB), bred by Richard Minto and owned by Ellen Minto (England)

3rd - Isr CH Barak Me Shaar Hagai, breeder/owner Myrna Shiboleth (Israel)

4th - Kochav Ole Me Shaar Hagai, bred by Myrna Shiboleth and owned by Victor Kaftal (USA)

JUNIOR DOG (one entry) 1st - Velikayas Shaashua (Dog Junior World Winner), bred and owned by Isabella Zirri (Italy)

INTERMEDIATE DOG (one entry) 1st - Velikaya's Melekk, bred by Isabella Zirri, owned by Sari Alanko (Finland)

CHAMPION BITCHES (one entry) 1st - Slovenian CH Velikaya's Golda Meir, bred by Isabella Zirri, owned by Jana Muranska

OPEN BITCHES 1st Velikayas Hamania (CAC & CACIB), bred by Isabella Zirri and owned by Cheryl & Jerry Hennings (USA)

2nd Velikayas Shenef, bred and owned by Isabella Zirri (Italy)

3rd - Velikayas Dera, bred and owned by Isabella Zirri (Italy)

4th - Anacan Sheindela, bred and owned by Ellen Minto (England) ("Shandy" was rated "very good". The judge loved her type and her face but said she was too fat (which she is, like her owner).

JUNIOR BITCHES (3 entries, 2 absent) 1st Velikaya's Letifa, (Bitch Junior World Winner) bred by Isabella Zirri and owned by Aries Laurence (France)

INTERMEDIATE BITCH (1 entry) 1st - Velikayas Pizmon, bred & owned by Isabella Zirri (Italy)

I apologise, as I do not have the Res CAC and Res CACIB in bitches, though I know it was one of Isabella's. The weird thing is the judge did not announce any of these awards---the ring secretary handed them out with the dog's critique after judging was over...mine actually being handed to me by another exhibitor, Isabella Zirri.

The next day we left Milan to go to visit our friends in Switzerland who had arranged for their vet to do the necessary worming and parasite treatments and paperwork we needed to re-enter the UK. We also go a chance to see the puppy they recently got from us to keep their "Simcha" company. Lorna could not get over the fact that in one day we had breakfast in Italy, lunch in Switzerland and a evening meal in France. We made the last push to Calais on Saturday with me now ill with whatever Richard had (I am still ill as I write this). We had a time for a quick stop in Cite Europe and then through customs and the Pet Travel Scheme check. No problems there (thank the Lord!)

We were very happy to see our bed that evening, as were the dogs. I must say both Digger and Sheindela made us proud by the way they behaved through all their trials. And for "Digger" to come home with the reserves as well was the icing on the cake. Dog people ARE CRAZY!!


Rob McLeod rung to tell me that he and Jan had a wonderful day at the Blackwood Open Show where their Anacan The Israelite At Dunline ("Abraham") won AVNSC and Group 1 under Miss P Whyte and then went on to win RBPIS under Miss M Sargent! To my knowledge, that is the highest win any Canaan Dog has had in this country to-date. Rob and Jan were also chuffed with the lovely critique "Abraham" had from Ron Carter who awarded him BP and PG3 at his very first show, Merthyr Open.

Bryna Comsky (USA) wrote to let me know that while she was here for our Working Party on the bank holiday weekend, her Canaan Dog was making more history back home. Ch Hadar Ha'Aretz Happy Paws won herself three more group placements. On May 27th, Judge Mr. Robert J. Shreve awarded her a Group 4 at Grand Rapids Kennel Club's Show at Kalamazoo, Michigan; and last weekend, Judges Mrs. Francine W. Schwartz and Dr. Robert M. Brown awarded her Groups 2 and 3 at Skokie Valley and Fox River Valley, Woodstock, Illinois. I've lost count, but I think that makes 23 group placements for "Paws" in the last 18 months!

I've been told by several sources now that the writer of a column in another dog publication has been making denigrating and false allegations about The Canaan Dog Club and its committee—the guardians of the breed.

Myrna Shiboleth (Israel) supplied us with an article from the Israel Nature Reserves and National Parks Authority, "Report on the Canaan Dog" by Dr. Tamar Ron, October 1999. In it Dr Ron writes, "Due to the difficulty of finding dogs of the original type, collection of Canaans {from the wild} has almost ceased. The last two dogs that were collected in the Negev were six years ago and two years ago. Most of the Canaans that lived in the open were destroyed in the framework of the fight against rabies, or became mixed with other breeds; even the majority of Bedouin dogs today are mixed with other breeds imported into the country. It is possible that there are still original Canaans among Bedouin tribes that still live the traditional nomadic life, and perhaps also in Egypt. The Canaan Dog is the only breed recognised as an official Israeli breed."

Dr Ron concludes the article with "In accordance with the recommendations of the IUCN, to preserve primitive strains of domestic animals, and as there are facts testifying to the Canaan Dog being the local pariah dog and the dog originating in this area which is the most ancient, my recommendation is to continue with the preservation of this breed." This mirrors the sentiments of the "guardians of the breed" in this country who will do all they can to preserve the breed even if at times it means conflict with "the powers that be".

Won't be long until we're off to Milan for the World Show. I should have lots to report upon our return.


The bank holiday weekend was quite a memorable one for the Canaan Dog as the first International Canaan Dog Working Party was hosted by the Canaan Dog Club. It was a very positive first meeting with input from six countries. Guidelines were set up to insure that the WP will remain a non-dictatorial information clearing house and forum for discussions on the health and welfare of the breed. It became apparent that we all had far more in common than there are differences. Discussion was begun on several subjects. Judges' education is a high priority for all. It is most likely that the second meeting will be held in Israel next year.

Catherine and Kurt Vogt from Switzerland came over two years ago to pick up a Ziggy/Sheindela daughter from us. They returned, along with daughters Patsy and Michelle, and their Canaan to attend the WP and the Bath show. They had hired a caravan and drove over and will spend a few weeks touring around England with their friend, Roland. They plan to include Scotland in their tour so they can look for "Nessie".

It was also a treat for me to meet up again with Bryna Comsky from the USA, whom I haven't seen in close to 7 years. Bryna (who has been in the breed for 30 years) bred my 4-time US specialty winner, Ariel Shin Ha'Aretz of Briel. I have mentioned Bryna's bitch Am CH Hadar Ha'Aretz Happy Paws in previous columns. "Paws" now has 20 herding group placements under her belt.

Bath was the first English dog show for Bryna, a dog show veteran, and she was quite taken with it, despite the weather. She commented on the excellent temperament of the English Canaans and was amazed by how quiet and behaved they were at ringside. She was also very complimentary on the English dogs' movement and soundness.

Bath was also the first dog show of any kind for the Vogts and their dog, "Simcha" (Anacan Song of Joy). So they were gobsmacked when "Simcha" took second in PGB, behind her "auntie", Anacan Forever Amber, thus qualifying for Crufts their first time out!

We were very fortunate in that the worst was over by the Canaans' show day as we had all heard about the near closure of the show the day before. We actually had sunshine for the highest entry of Canaans to-date! Bob Gregory's choice for BOB was our Anacan Ziggy, with BOS being awarded to Jill and Ian Terry's Layla Me Shaar Hagai. RWD was our The Lion of Judah of Anacan and RWB went to Anacan Forever Amber, being shown for the first time by her new owner, Lorna Hastings. Though BP was shown in the catalogue, no award was given-- we were told because there was no puppy class. However, their were 4 puppies shown and Pam O'Loughlin's Tzel Schacmac Among Caoilta was actually BP. It was also nice to see Gina Pointing and her 12-year-old "Golda" (Queen of the Orchid at Mornavega) in the ring again. Though slowing down a bit ("Golda" that is), she still looks good. There aren't too many breeds that could be shown at that age.

Would love to hear from you.


Had some wonderful news from abroad. Riikka Turunen reported that on Sunday 7th May her "Andy" (Anacan Diplomat At Kirifix) became a Finnish Champion. In Finland a dog cannot be awarded its championship before two years of age and "Andy" turned two years old on the 17th of January. "Andy" was sired by our "Ziggy" out of our "Sheindela" He is the second Anacan Canaan to finish their foreign championship, the other being "Ziggy's" litter brother, Anacan Cause To Celebrate in Bermuda. Riikka also reported that "Andy's" son, Kirifix King of Hearts ("Topi") had HP and that she also won the breeders class. Great day!

From the USA comes the news from Alan Gersman that In Rock Springs, Pennsylvania at the AKC Agility Trial, run by MNDTC, with the weather HOT and sunny, the temperature upwards of 90 degrees and no shade, his U-CD Briel's Isabel P Tiger Pooh, CD, AAD, OAC, OJC, OGC, AXJ, MX (bred by Ellen Minto), completed her 9th and 10th qualifying score in the Agility Excellent class --- finishing her Master Agility Excellent title. On Saturday, 9th May "Izzy" qualified and had 4th place and on Sunday, 10th May she qualified and took 3rd place. To say Alan is over the moon is an understatement. By the way, "Izzy" is 7-1/2 years old.

On the home front I was thrilled to read that there are 19 Canaan Dogs entered at the Bath championship show under Mr Bob Gregory and he must be thrilled as well. This will be the highest entry of Canaans to-date in this country, and as such, will be a great opportunity for anyone who is interested in the breed to see it and speak to the various owners. Our International Canaan Dog Working Party is tied in with this weekend, so there will be a few foreign breeders on hand as well.


I've been so busy with other issues the last few weeks I never reported on the Normidca open show, held 5th March, at which I was given the privilege of judging Canaans. Apologies to all concerned. BOB went to Jill & Ian Terry's Layla Me Shaar Hagai and Res BOB was awarded to their Babrees Bethea Batyam. By allowing me to judge, it made for a smaller entry for the club then they would otherwise have had if Richard & I and those owning Canaans bred by us could have shown. So I am most grateful to Normidca for allowing me to judge and to the exhibitors for showing under me.

Joe Kirk had a terrific entry of Canaan Dogs at Birmingham National with a total of 14, which included 5 puppies! It is really a wonderful feeling to see our numbers grow at a sensible, but laudable, pace. Mr Kirk found his BOB in our "Digger" (The Lion of Judah At Anacan) and his BOS in Jill & Ian Terry's Layla me Shaar Hagai. Best Puppy and Res BD went to our 6 month old "Remy" (Anacan Masterpiece) who was attending his very first show. Our judges should have a very enjoyable time with the numbers, and colours, and quality they will find in our ring at class-giving shows this year.

As the year goes on the breed will have a lot of exciting events to announce. We will have our first "foreign" Canaan being shown at Bath Championship Show. "Simcha" (Anacan Song of Joy) will be coming home from Switzerland with her "mum" and "dad", Catherine & Kurt Vogt, who will be attending our Working Party that same weekend. I am quite sure Simcha is only the first of several Canaans that will be taking advantage of the pet passport scheme. There are at least two more litters planned for this year. We will be "husband shopping" for the British Canaans whilst over at the World Show in Milan and we are looking into leasing a champion from Finland to help expand the genepool. So there are lots of exciting things on the horizon for the breed. You'll be sure to hear about them first in this column.


Robert and Jan McLeod rung with the happy news that their "Abraham" (Anacan The Israelite at Dunline) won Best AV Utility Puppy and Puppy Group 3rd under judge Ron Carter at Merthyr and District open show on 9th April. "Abraham" had just turned 6 months old two days before the show. Robert was most pleased with how well "Abraham" behaved. He said the judge commented on how steady he was and how mature he seemed for a puppy of that age. "Digger" and "Beulah" are very proud parents indeed.

We are always telling people that Canaan Dogs do mature more quickly than other breeds, but this is only logical, as it is part and parcel of their survival traits. A young Canaan Dog puppy has to be able to keep up with the pack and learn survival skills early on if it is to become an old dog someday.

What is your definition of a breed specialist? It seem TKC thinks that 4 years in a breed is enough to make one a specialist. I personally don't see how this is possible, especially with a breed such as a Canaan Dog. Statistics show that most people are in and out of the dog fancy within 5 years. Most people who make it past the 5 year mark are certified dog fanatics (this was printed in several doggy journals and I must concur from my personal experience). If this is true, how could one with only 4 years experience in a breed be considered a specialist? Even more so, how could one who has only owned one specimen of a given breed be considered a "specialist"? I've been owned by 24 Canaans to-date, and I've learned something from each one. Even l ittermates are not necessarily the same. You can't really consider yourself "doggy" if you aren't open to be on a constant learning curve. There is always something new to learn—especially in our breed. Any comments from out there in reader land?

The First International Canaan Dog Working Party will soon be here (27th May). To-date we have representatives coming from the US, Israel, Germany and Switzerland with apologies from Finland who will participate by sending their health records. This will be a very good start towards global co-operation in the furthering of the Canaan Dog's welfare. I look forward to bringing you reports of what is discussed.


I can assure you that being a club secretary is no picnic. Often you are held personally responsible for the decisions made by the club's committee and become the object of vendettas. Lately I've been receiving pressure from high places to put certain names on our judges' list, even though they either don't meet the criteria and/or do not have the support of the club (as per TKC advisory criteria). I personally do not have the authority to put anyone on or keep anyone off our list. I only have one vote—the same as every other member of the committee. The club's refusal to cave in to the pressure may see my dogs not doing so well in the show ring this year, or at Crufts next year—time will tell. I find it very peculiar that the Canaan Dog has suddenly become a "trophy breed".

TKC doesn't help matters when it changes its mind as to what rare breeds need to have or not have as part of their judges' criteria. A phone call to TKC last year assured us that we did not need an A list as rare breeds do not have CC's. After submitting our annual returns our list and criteria were rejected for not having an A list. Another phone call to TKC was made and we were told that they had changed their minds and we do need an A list. Subtle pressure was put on us to include the names of people who judge the Utility Group on our list, even though there are only one or two who know anything about Canaan Dogs, even care about Canaan Dogs, or who would have the support of the club. However, if a person does not meet our criteria and does not have the support of the club, they don't go on our list. I can't help but wonder about the legality of all this. Watch this space!

At Gravesend and Medway we again had the pleasure of showing to Mr Peter Jolley. BOB was our Anacan Ziggy with Res BOB going to Alison Byrne and Ivan Kaye's "Livvie" (Babrees Bat Benyas). Alison and Ivan showed their new girl, Talither Bat Me Babrees, for the first time. "Tali" just turned six months old on the day and she did very well. Peter Jolley was very impressed and happily gave her BP. Sue Domun was on hand to take photos of the BOB's and BP's and we can't wait to receive the photos as she always does such a brilliant job of it. The club was very generous in awarding a special millennium clock to all the BOB winners. Many thanks to the club secretary, Pat Parkes, and the rest of the committee for all the hard work they put into the show.


Mr Robert McLeod got his first opportunity to judge Canaans at the BUBA open show. He must have been very happy as he drew an entry of 13! This included two of the puppies bred by Jill and Ian Terry last year who actually turned 6 months old on the day. A veteran of two of our breed seminars, Mr McLeod knew how to approach our dogs properly, which is particularly important with the youngsters. Mr McLeod found his BOB in our "Digger" (The Lion of Judah At Anacan). BOS went to "Digger's" daughter, Anacan Sheindela and BP went to Pam O'Loughlin's Tzel Schacmac, who showed himself ever so well. Congratulations on a wonderful training (and handling) job Pam!

We have three more puppies that will be old enough to enter the show ring in less than a month. Interest in the breed is growing, and the clubs must now use judges from our list. Entries in class-giving shows will hit an all-time high this year. Therefore, it's all the more important that those going on our judges' list are well-versed in the breed—meeting all our criteria, and well thought of by those of us showing our Canaans. Poor judging has adversely impacted so many breeds. We don't want the Canaan Dog to be added to the casualty list.

Richard and I were very sad to have to take back for re-homing our "Amber" (Anacan Forever Amber). Unfortunately for Steve and Diane Llloyd-Andrews, their baby girl has developed allergies and their doctor ordered them to get rid of the dogs (as they always do). Due to space limitations, Richard and I were unable to keep "Amber", which breaks my heart. But we have found a new home for her with dog behaviourist, Lorna Hastings, who has 3 other non-Canaan dogs. We originally met Lorna at Discover Dogs at Earls Court last November. She visited our booth again at Crufts and was told about "Amber". Lorna arranged for both herself and her dogs to come and meet her and fell in love. She will be getting "Amber" out into the show ring, where she belongs and, hopefully, will be training her for agility as well. So all's well that ends well.

The Canaan Dog Club has published its first handbook to celebrate the Millennium. It is a very well done publication produced by Jill Terry. Its contents include a potted history of The Canaan Dog Club, the story of Shebaba, the first Canaan Dog registered in the UK, a listing of all litters born in the UK, the winners of the club trophies, Crufts' winners and ads from various Canaan owners. The cost is £5 (plus p&p) and can be ordered from Jill Terry. You can ring her. I recommend it to anyone who is interested in the breed.


Hard to believe it but another Crufts has come and gone. We had 13 Canaans entered with only one absentee, and that was due to the fact that she had come into heat. Richard and I were ecstatic as BOB went to our Kibutzer Kween In Kofyn ("Beulah")-- her third such award at Crufts, and BOS was awarded to our 8-1/2 year old Gvir Me Shaar Hagai, very nicely handled for us by our good friend Barbara Gold. This is the second year in a row dogs of ours have 'done the double'. Res BD was our "Digger" (The Lion of Judah At Anacan) and Res BB was Michelle Powell's "Kelsey" (Babrees Bright Blaise).

Once again Canaans were not judged until 5:19 PM in a, by then, just about empty hall with only a few die-hard spectators who had waited all day to see us judged. This time the lateness was due to our judge, Mr R C Hall, being confiscated to judge the German Spitz (Klein and Mittel) when their scheduled judge fell ill. It seems unfair that it is always our lot at Crufts to be judged so late that both dogs and people are fed up with it all. Mr Hall, however, is to be commended because even though he had already judged 172 dogs and then had to sprint from Hall 1 to Hall 4 to judge us, he didn't rush us and showed us all the deference you could wish for. He handled our dogs thoroughly, but gently and was polite to each exhibitor. Thank you Mr Hall! I must apologise, as I don't know the name of our ring steward (it was not the person listed in the show catalogue) and I wish to thank him as well. He was polite and endeavoured to save the day by announcing each class loudly and clearly—as though we mattered. And his offerings of Polos to the exhibitors (in two flavours no less!) throughout judging was very sweet (pun intended). Sir, please reveal your name to me so I can publicly thank you in this column. You are a gem!

Myrna Shiboleth from Israel was there, but unfortunately, I never really got a chance to chat with her this time. I finally got to meet Ruth Corner who was responsible for the "second wave" of Canaans in the UK. Ruth and I did get a chance to chat and I found her to be very warm and fun loving. As she has finally recovered from her illness Ruth is now hoping to be able to adopt an older Canaan. She is living in a flat in Scotland and doesn't think a puppy would be appropriate. We'd love to see Ruth get back into Canaans so we'll see what we can do. I also met up with Natasha Kamoda from Germany. I met Natasha at my first Crufts in 1995 and she was surprised I remembered both her and her Canaan, "Phoenix". I usually remember the dog's name and not the owner's.

There was quite a bit of interest in the breed and I must admit to being gratified when, upon leaving the group ring after the judging, a woman called to me to tell me how much she loved "Beulah". She said she was an American judge and had judged the breed a number of times and thought our Canaans in the UK were so much better than the American ones! Visitors at our Discover Dogs booth kept our volunteers very busy answering questions and showing off their dogs. Thanks to Patrick and Barbara Gold and Kate Poxon for setting up and manning the booth on Thursday (our show day). They did so again Saturday with Richard and I and Alison Byrne and Ivan Kaye. Thanks also goes to Jill Terry and Pam O'Loughlin for being there on Friday; and to Michelle Powell, Doug and Jane Bateman, and Alison and Ivan again for being there on Sunday. In addition to all the new visitors, it seems we have a core of fans that come to visit our booth each time the event is held! The only downside for Richard and myself was that our car broke down just as we arrived at the NEC on Saturday to do Discover Dogs. We literally coasted into the car park and had to be towed home by Green Flag. It seems our gearbox and radiator need replacing at a price which would pay for an awful lot of dog show entries. Such is life!


The Crufts' Canaan entry is 13 dogs this year. The breed has been able to gain a slight increase in the entry each year since TKC has granted us classes at this event. It is very gratifying to see everyone's hard work in promoting the breed paying off.

Finally we no longer have to struggle to get people to man our Discover Dogs booth the 4 days of Crufts. We are very pleased with our efforts in this arena as we are succeeding in educating people about the breed in all honesty. I've heard from friends and acquaintances that have put in the effort to learn all about their chosen breed before ever acquiring one - or so they thought. But too often clubs, and individuals, will only show to the public those dogs which personify the image they wish to project about their breed, hiding at home those dogs who may possess personalities or traits which they don't necessarily want to make public. Then when the unsuspecting person gets their new pride and joy home, they are often in for a shock when the puppy grows into something they were not expecting. At least with our breed we make sure the public knows what they are getting into if they take a Canaan into their household. We let them see every behaviour—from the happiest, most outgoing puppy, to the "I'm so scared" adolescents, to the "macho" adults—and everything in-between. And we do explain how do deal with each behaviour. Theoretically, those who still decide they would like a Canaan really want one for the dog it is. And WE ARE PROUD of our Canaans just the way they are.

Heard from top Israeli breeder, Myrna Shiboleth, that she will be over for the 4 days of Crufts. I look forward to some good discussions with her and hope to get her to do a stint at Discover Dogs while she's here.

Richard and I have been in a "discussion" over which show carries the most prestige. This started on our Canaan Internet chat list after the person whose Canaan took BOB at Westminster said that Westminster was the most prestigious show in the world. An Israeli and an Italian each claimed that the World Show was most prestigious. Of course Richard and I argued that Crufts had this claim to fame and were gratified when another American, who has attended all 3 events, also agreed that Crufts holds this honour. Thinking about it, with quarantine slowly disappearing, won't Crufts eventually become "the" World Show?

We are often asked with regard to the Canaan Dog's ears as to what age can you expect them to prick. The answer is that they can, and do, go up from anywhere up to a year of age. We compared notes with other breeders and to quote Donna Dodson, Pleasant Hill Canaan Dogs in the USA, she says "I have bred 50 litters and many of the males of bigger bone and body mass have not had their ears stay up until about a year." So it is important for judges not to penalise a Canaan whose ears are not erect UNTIL they are 12 months of age.


Just got the results of the Canaan judging at the Westminster Kennel Club show, hot off the Internet (photos and all). There were 4 entries this year. BOB was awarded to multi-group placing CH Hadar Ha'Aretz Happy Paws, a 2-1/2 year old white and black patched bitch, owned by Bryna Comsky. BOS went to a handsome black and white patched 2-year-old dog, CH Mad River Walk On the Wild Side, owned by Sandra Sailer and Cynthia Grupp. Having attended 13 Westminster shows in my lifetime, I can attest it is quite a spectacle, though not on the scale of Crufts. Unfortunately I won't have the Group results on time for this column, but will wait with baited breath to see how the Canaan fares.

On a sad note we note the passing of Kensix Khameshee, "Fiver", who would have been 14 years old in May. "Fiver" was bred by Myrna Shiboleth and whelped in quarantine. Co-owned by Marjorie Cording and Mary MacPhail, he resided with Marjorie and her husband, David. "Fiver" was a great ambassador for the breed in his time and was in the big ring at Crufts on six occasions. We are fortunate that some of his virtues still live on in his daughter, "Jasmine" (Mornavega The Chosen One of Anacan) and her offspring. We send our condolences to the Cordings and Mary.

The show season will be starting for the breed in March with Normidca open show, Crufts, BUBA open show, and Gravesend and Medway open show offering classes each weekend on the trot. Should be great fun, but exhausting.


In an age where political correctness runs riot, why is it that numerically small breeds, such as the Canaan Dog, are still victims of "racism"? As an "ethnic minority" Canaans are not allowed the right granted to the "majority" breeds to compete for championship certificates. Apparently being numerically small means you are "racially inferior" to the popular breeds in the eyes of TKC. Yet I would be willing to wager on a percentage basis, you would find more Canaans of good-excellent quality than you would in the numerically larger breeds. And I would be willing to wager that the health of the breed is as good as, or exceeds that of the breeds upon which TKC smiles. Judges too, look down their noses at the breed, as if a Canaan is not worthy of their opinion. Out of all the breed classes given for Canaan Dogs last year, how many judges bothered to write critiques? Not many, I can assure you, even though we had the largest entries of Canaans to-date in this country. If we were a more "important" breed, would we have been given this snub?

The Canaan Dog has not had the fortune of having a wealthy benefactor in the UK, or any country for that matter, the value of which many breeds can attest to. Rather, like Richard and myself, the core of the die-hard Canaan fanciers have sacrificed both time and finances to further the cause of the breed. In my case I am into the 16th years of "the crusade" and I must admit, at times I feel like "why bother?" as it often is like hitting your head against the wall. Time that probably should be spent in relaxing with your dogs is instead spent writing breed notes, updating web sites, answering enquiries, manning the booth at Discover Dogs, etc. Money that should have been spent fixing up the house or going on holiday goes for show entries and petrol and the running of bigger cars than you would need if you didn't show dogs.

Then there is the heartbreak that can come with breeding. When a litter you breed, or individuals in it, don't come up to the standard you are looking for, it is far more catastrophic than it would be in the more popular breeds as pet homes for Canaans are few and hard to find, and space in your own home is limited. Everyone who undertakes to breed a litter of Canaans should be greatly admired for the difficulties they are taking on and the sacrifices entailed. Most Canaan breeders in this country have only been able to breed one or two litters because of the problems entailed. However, their contribution to the breed has been immense as if it were not for them, the breed would probably no longer exist in the UK.

Let's hope this new Millennium will see the dawning of a new age of appreciation of the "rare breeds"--- the "ethnic minorities" of dogdom. Let's hope that the Canaan Dog, and its rare breed brethren, will finally be extended the same rights and the same respect as the rest of the dog world.


The show season 2000 has begun, though there haven't been any Canaans out in the ring in the UK as of yet and there probably won't be too much activity before Crufts. However, as a result of the JWP, even with the relatively few shows that give us classes, it will not take long for the poor show secretaries to work through our judges' list. What a nightmare it must be for them in the numerically larger breeds. On the other hand, it is not easy for the breed clubs either if they wish to allow onto their lists only those who make an effort to familiarise themselves with their breed and are capable judges, as is certainly the case with the Canaan Dog. It is no longer enough to just be a "name". Hopefully, the end result will be judges who are truly interested in judging dogs. If any of you out there are ever faced with the prospect of judging a Canaan in AVNSC, please, please read the standard, look at our website and ask questions BEFORE you judge the breed. You'll be doing yourself, and the Canaan Dog entry, a huge favour.

I heard from Bryna Comsky in the US that her Ch Hadar Ha'Aretz Happy Paws ended the year at the Chicago Goldcoast Kennel Club Shows, Villa Park, Illinois with her tenth and eleventh career group placements under judges Steven D. Gladstone and Charles M. Mulock. "Paws" started the New Year off well by winning Group 4 on the 8th January, and again on 9th January, under Judges Ms. Virginia Lyne and Mrs. Lee Canalizo at the River Centre Shows, St. Paul, Minnesota.

Riikka Turunen in Finland reports that the 8th January was a lucky day for her as well. She was at Kajaani's National Show under judge Mrs Agnes Ganami-Kertes from Israel. Two puppies sired by the dog we sent her, Anacan Diplomat at Kirifix, out of her bitch Yedida were shown the first time and Agnes liked them--- A LOT! She even asked the owner of the male, Kirifix King of Hearts," Do you realise what a wonderful Canaan you have?" making Riikka proud indeed. "Topi", as he is called, is owned by Marja Partanen and he won Puppy Dog 1st, HP, BOB-PUPPY. The lovely bitch, Kirifix Knockout, owners Riikka Turunen & Anu Miettinen won Puppy Bitch 1st, HP, BOS-PUPPY.

Last, but certainly not least, Alan Gersman, USA, reports that his "Isabel" got her 3rd USDAA Masters Pairs leg in agility (takes 5 for a title) in Virginia Beach, VA 15th January. As I'm Isabel's breeder I can tell you I am very proud of both her and Alan.

Please be advised that The Canaan Dog Club AGM will be held on Sunday 27th February 2000 at the Tysoe Village Hall commencing at 11:00 am. Lunch is available at £2 per person and the American video on the Canaan Dog and clips of the 1998 World Show entry of Canaans will be shown.


A belated Happy New Year to all! Hope your holidays were enjoyable. It seems the only millennium bug was the flu bug going round. I had a small dose of it lasting only a few days so I got off lucky. Especially as I had one of my two best friends from New York, Cheryl Kelly, along with her daughter, Dana, come to spend the holidays with us. They arrived the early hours of Christmas morning and gifted Richard and I some "Canaan goodies" from America in the form of a really well done wooden businesscard holder carved in the shape of a Canaan for Richard and a blouse with a Canaan head painted on it for me. They also gave us two copies of an American dog magazine published in 1996 with a feature article on the "new AKC recognised breed—the Canaan Dog", which was very interesting. Last year Cheryl sent me a lovely broach with a Canaan Dog head handpainted on polished slate. As there isn't very much in the way of Canaan memorabilia as of yet, these gifts were greatly appreciated.

While visiting us Cheryl and Dana got to help us socialise our new Canaan puppy, "Rembrandt", and his brother "Leib" who was going to his new home in Denmark the weekend after they left. On the 8th January, Nina and Isak Korn flew over from Copenhagen to take possession of their new baby, "Leib", who they named after Isak's grandfather who died in a concentration camp. As Leib is Hebrew for "lion" and Leib's sire is The Lion of Judah At Anacan, the name is most fitting. The Korns, who found us on the Internet, decided to fly over and pick up their puppy so they could have a crash course in Canaan Dogs from Richard and myself. They are lovely people and we are pleased to have formed a new friendship with them. We look forward to taking up their offer of visiting them in Copenhagen.

We heard from Robert McLeod that he and his wife, Jan, are very happy with their new Canaan puppy, "Abraham", as are Barbara and Patrick Gold with their new boy, "Athtar". Pam O'Loughlin reports that she is still delighted with her "Tzel" and can't wait to start showing him. Jill Terry told me "Tzel's" sister, "Talith" is still looking for a new home if anyone is thinking of taking up the Canaan challenge.

Heard from Bryna Comsky that her AKC Ch Hadar Ha'Aretz Happy Paws ended 1999 as # 1 Canaan Dog in the USA with an amazing eleven group placements to her credit in the one year. Leal and Cindy Grupps' Mad River Walk On The Wild Side was the number one Canaan male in America for 1999 and the Pedigree Award winner for top breed points. Congratulations to all concerned!

Richard and I just had "Digger" and "Sheindela" vaccinated against rabies in preparation for (hopefully) taking them to the World Show in Milan this coming June. It would be very nice if we could have some British dogs make a good showing at this event. All good wishes and positive thoughts are most welcome.

Make a New Year's resolution to send me your news and views.


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Last updated on the 4th March 2006