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This last year has seen a substantial growth in the number of Canaans being bred and exhibited in this country. This is quite rewarding for those of us who have struggled to make it all happen. It is very important, perhaps now more than ever, that everyone makes the effort to work together to ensure the welfare of the breed. Nowhere is this more important than in the whelping box.
I know a lot of my readers may have years more experience than I do, but the New Year will see me starting my 25th year in the dog fancy, and my 18th in Canaans. Before I started in Canaans I had a fair amount of success in both Bernese Mtn Dogs and Tibetan Spaniels, plus I had 7 years of working as a veterinary nurse/office manager. Over the years I have taken some breeder's courses and attended a few seminars at Cornell University relevant to breeding. I am quite aware of the genetics involved in dog breeding and feel that the advancements being made in this area are another good tool for the breeder. However they are only a tool. Being a good breeder means more than being versed in genetics—you must also have a good eye, and have a good working knowledge of the dogs in the pedigrees you are studying when choosing potential breeding dogs. This is why being in a breed for a long time gives you an advantage as you will most likely have seen many of the dogs in the pedigrees you are looking at as well as, and perhaps more importantly, their littermates.
As an illustration, years ago, when choosing a stud for what would be my second litter of Bernese, I went to a “name” who told me the dog had been hip-scored, eye tested and had his elbow checked—all normal. However, she failed to mention to me that the dog had hypothyroidism and was on 9 thyroxin tablets a day. I mention this little story to point out it is not only what you know about a potential mate for your dog, it is also what you don't know that counts. Some things can be purposely kept from you (as in the foregoing case) and sometimes the dog's owner doesn't know that there is a problem in the background.
It is very important to look at the dog/bitch's littermates when possible. The Institute of Genetic Disease Control (GDC) in the USA when testing dogs for inherited disease requires a 3-generation pedigree be submitted as well. By doing so they are building up a data base they feel will be far more accurate than one built on the individual dog only. To illustrate the point I will go back to the Bernese. In the late '70s, there was a very popular stud dog who in himself was a beauty. His hips were very good; he was a breed champion and an obedience champion. His temperament was outstanding as was his type. However, he was the only one in a litter of 8 who did not have hip dysplasia. (His sire was also dysplastic.) The result was he produced a massive amount of HD. Cornell University, in their bulletins on hip dysplasia, said you were better off using a dog with fair hips if all its siblings' hips were good than using one with excellent hips if the rest of the litter was bad. The dog I just mentioned was a case in point. On the other extreme, I knew so many breeders in Bernese who would breed anything with good hips, even when completely lacking in type, with the (to me) expected poor results. You must strive for a balance here.
A friend of mine back in the States who has her Masters degree in genetics was once involved with the Boxer breed. She told me that almost all Boxers have heart murmurs of varying degrees. When she discovered this she embarked on a breeding programme under the guidance of the University of Kansas veterinary centre. In time she developed a line of Boxers, which had no heart murmurs, but she completely lost type and gained the hatred of a lot of the other breeders. So she threw in the towel, as there seemed to be no way to breed a typey Boxer line completely free of heart problems.
So what am I saying? You can look around the Canaan world globally and the breeders here and abroad will say they are trying to preserve the breed as found in its native land, yet they are producing a number of different types. I know several breeders who are very into the genetics and health studies, but seem to ignore the phenotype they have before them. In other words, no matter what health screening tests the dog passes, and no matter what the inbreeding co-efficiency is, or how many champions are in the pedigree, blah, blah, blah, if the dog/bitch has a bad front, or bad tail set, or poor rear angulation, or poor type, etc, chances are its going to pass it on to at least some of the litter. I suppose it's not surprising at how many breeders can't see these things when you see how many judges (and ones who should know better) are unable to see poor shoulder layback, incorrect rear angulation and so on. Sometimes I think you either have an eye for these things or you don't.
It seems that today there are too many people who aren't willing to put in their apprenticeship time to really learn about the breed. I'm not just talking about Canaans, but about the dog fancy in general. But, of course, my main concern is the Canaan Dog. You cannot develop a “breeding programme” based just on paperwork. You have to wait and see how a dog develops, studying both its strong points and faults, before you can make an informed decision on where to go next to improve the following generation. Perhaps I'm old-fashioned, but to me breeding is as much an art as it is a science, and technology cannot produce a great dog without the addition of commonsense, patience, and good breeding practices.
To all my readers, warm wishes for a healthy, happy and successful New Year!
BUBA is the Canaan Dog's last show of the year, which is a qualifier for the DW/Pedigree Top Canaan Dog Award. It was also my Digger's (The Lion of Judah At Anacan) retirement show. At 8 years of age and after 7 years of promoting the breed in the show ring, Richard and I felt it was time for Digger to hang up his show lead and just enjoy life. Needless to say, we were truly delighted when judge, Mrs Zena Wallace, awarded BOB to Digger enabling him to retire as Top Canaan Dog for the 5th time. He achieved this despite the fact that he was not at two of the qualifying shows this year.
Mrs Wallace is a charter member of The Canaan Dog Club and was the Club Chairlady for several years. She told us afterwards that she was judging for type and this was evident in that her other awards were Res BD to Digger's son, Anacan The Israelite At Dunline (owned by Rob & Jan McLeod); BB and BOS to Digger's daughter, Anacan Forever Amber With Lorianna, owned by Lorna Hastings; Res BB to our Digger's daughter, Anacan Sheindela (Amber's litter sister); and BP to our Digger granddaughter, Anacan Glory Bound.
I had a chuckle when David Braddock, owner of Babrees The Milky Way (“Tanya”) told us he was officially no longer an “amateur”. He was referring to the fact that since there is prize money for placements at BUBA and his girl had a third place, he had been awarded money. Of course, in other sports this takes away your amateur status. “Tanya” and David have done well enough this year to not be considered “amateurs” in any event!
Though there is not an official award for it, Lorna Hastings' Amber is this year's well-deserved overall Top Canaan Bitch and her Lorianna Lucky Star (Amber's daughter), is overall Top Puppy. "Star" has had a blinding first year in the show ring and the future bodes very well for her indeed. Congratulations Lorna on both of your bitches' achievements!
We have spoken about "type" before in this column, i.e. the characteristic qualities distinguishing a breed. For the Canaan Dog, the club's proposed breed standard explains Canaan-type very well, i.e. “A medium-sized, well-balanced, square dog of the pariah dog type. The dog should not be exaggerated in any way. It should look like it has the potential for survival in the desert. There should be a strong distinction between the sexes, with males looking masculine and bitches looking feminine. It is very important to the breed that correct type is maintained and that we not bow to the dictates of the show ring, which can often destroy a breed. I am pleased that to-date the Canaan exhibitors here have been able to do so. Long may it continue!
This past year has seen the Canaan Dog going from strength-to-strength with both numbers of dogs and exhibitors increasing slowly, but steadily, and judges recognising the quality of dog we, as a whole, are exhibiting. I hope TKC is paying attention.
Years ago the Nordic Show was the first and only open show to give Canaan Dog classes. When I arrived in this country in '94, the show was still being held at Wood Green Animal Shelter in Godmanchester, which was a very nice venue. It seems that ever since they've moved it to The Sports Connexion, the show has slowly gone downhill. The show this past weekend was very lacking in atmosphere, and by BIS judging, it was quite lacking in spectators as well, which is a shame. Personally I think the decline in open show entries is due in large part to the fact that they are no longer fun—they've become too serious. Despite this, we still managed an entry of 7 Canaans for Mrs Christine Hughes, whose three-time attendance at our club breed seminars paid off in that she had approached our dogs properly and they responded well to her. I am proud to say that our "Ziggy" took home the Claywall Trophy for BOB Canaan for the second year running (our “Digger” won it the previous 3 years). Lorna Hasting's “Amber” was a very worthy challenger and took home BOS. My “Lyndsay” (Anacan Glory Bound) was BP.
Shortly after arriving at The Sports Connexion I ran into Peter Radley, who was there to judge Alaskan Malamutes. He chatted to me about the Canaan Dog's progress in this country and said he thought our slow, but steady growth was the right way to go. Mr Radley then shared with me that he had been to Australia to judge and while there was given a private tour of the Dingo sanctuary. He commented on how very Canaan-like he found the Dingoes to be. He told me they are really quite retiring and that their man-eating reputation was nonsense. He related a funny story in that the caretaker at the sanctuary has two sand-coloured Dingoes that are very tame and live in the house with her. The postman had told her that he didn't mind delivering the post to her “when those two nice, fawn-coloured dogs are out in the yard”, but he didn't like delivering the post “when those Cattle Dogs were in the yard”. Little did he realise that all the “dogs” he was referring to were Dingoes.
I have been receiving the Dingo sanctuary newsletter, “Merigal”, for several years and originally was amazed on how Canaan-like many of the Dingoes are in appearance. However, I really shouldn't have been surprised at all as they do have a common ancestry. A very interesting article by Gautam Das called “The Indian Wolf, the Australian Dingo and the Indian “Pariah” Dog – Was There A Southern Species of Canine?” printed in the January 1998 issue of “Merigal” and subsequently in Vol 5, Issues 1 & 2 of “The Canaan Dog News” theorizes that the Basenji, certain Mediterranean breeds such as the Ibizan Hound, the Cirneco dell'Etna, and the Portuguese Podengo, as well as the Canaan Dog are the unadulterated “pure” form of the Indian Pariah (or as he prefers to call it, the “Indian Spitz”), and the dingo could be considered a modern example of this southern race. It is a very interesting article and the accompanying photos of the Indian pariah dogs are again, very Canaan-like.
I think that those of us who are striving to keep the Canaan Dog as close to natural as possible are correct as whenever man tries to improve on “mother nature”, he invariably screws up. Here's to “the real thing”!
Please be advised that the website address for The Canaan Dog Club has changed to www.canaandogclub.co.uk and that the site has been decorated for Christmas.
I am curious to find out how many visitors there were at Discover Dogs, Earl's Court 3rd & 4th November, as it felt to me as if attendance was down a bit overall. However, the Canaan Dog booth was buzzing with activity, and I believe one of the reasons is because our dogs are so good with children. All day Saturday our “Ziggy” had children in the pen with him, hugging and stroking him, as did our “Remy” on the Sunday. We do tell people how good they are with kids and this was the proof of the pudding as our dogs come from a childless home. Alison Byrne, along with her partner, Ivan, and son, Lawrence, was supposed to give Richard and I a break from our duties by relieving us in the early afternoon. Unfortunately, Alison injured her already bad back and was laid up in a lot of pain. However, Ivan, with Alison's sister, Ann, as her stand-in, did come along to help with “Tali” and young “Zak”. These two Canaans were also very good breed representatives with their handsome good looks and lovely temperaments. As Richard and I went for lunch we received a telephone call from Barbara Gold who, along with husband, Patrick, were to come along with their dogs to relieve us on Sunday. She told us that she and Patrick had been involved in a car accident—they were rear-ended—and both were suffering from whiplash, with Patrick being in the most pain. So a quick phone call to Lorna Hastings who happily agreed to come along on Sunday afternoon. Lorna arrived with 3 in tow—“Amber”, “Star” and young “Simi” (a littermate to Alison's “Zak”) who again represented the breed well. We once again had a number of Israelis stop, one a representative of “The Jerusalem Post”, who had never heard of the Canaan Dog. A young Israeli named Dan commented on our dogs' good temperaments telling us that the Canaans in Israel are far more aggressive, which I know to be true. All in all, a very good weekend for the breed.
I've had a report from Jan McLeod on the Welsh Kennel Club Top Puppy Competition, which her two Canaans, Anacan The Israelite At Dunline (“Abraham”) and Anacan Call Me Ishmael At Dunline (“Jacob”) had qualified for. Jan reports that that there were 32 pups entered in this knockout match judged, in turn, by Bob Gregory and Eleanor Bothwell. “Abraham” went under Mr Gregory and, unfortunately, was knocked out in the first round. “Jacob” fared a little better under Mrs Bothwell going up over a nice Australian Terrier in the first round. In the following round a lovely Afghan who finished as the Group winner and Reserve Best Puppy beat him overall, so the McLeods were very satisfied with that result. Jan said that both dogs were rewarded with beautiful commemorative pieces by Patsi Ann and produce vouchers from sponsors, Pedigree. Jan also wishes to thank those in the breed who sent 'good luck' cards, which she arrayed on the day to show off to the other breeds the Canaan camaraderie. I can say I am very pleased that both these boys qualified for the event and am very proud of the way they represented the breed.
Lorna Hastings and her Canaans have been having a fantastic year. At Midland Counties judge, Tom Mather, awarded Anacan Forever Amber With Lorianna Res BB in AVNSC, going reserve to the BIS Toy Poodle, Aedan Double Delight. Then “Amber's” daughter, Lorianna Lucky Star was awarded BP in AVNSC, making her 11th BP win. Congratulations on a fantastic first year “Star”!
As you may have read in the 27th October edition of DW, my “Gvir”, who has been staying with Lorna Hastings since she used him to sire, “Star”, has gone missing. He wandered off of Lorna's farm on the 23rd September and has been sighted a number of times in the Biddenden area. Lorna has been out every day with her “girls” laying down a scent trail for “Gvir” in the hopes he will find his way home. She has also inundated the area with posters and has had articles in several of the local papers. Richard and I, and our friend, Alison Byrne, have also done some searching with no luck. “Gvir” is 10-years old, but barring an accident should be able to continue to take care of himself, as any good Canaan can. However, we all want him home. If any of my readers living within a 6 mile radius of Egerton, Kent should spot “Gvir”, please ring Lorna as quickly as possible after the sighting on 01233 756565. Thank you.
The McLeod's two Canaans, Anacan The Israelite At Dunline and Anacan Call Me Ishmael At Dunline, had both qualified for the Welsh Kennel Club Top Dog Competition, but it was cancelled earlier this year due to the foot and mouth disease problem. However, Jan has written to me that the competition has been re-scheduled for the 3rd November. By the time you read this it will all be done and dusted, but no matter what the result, I am still a proud “granny” to these two fine young dogs. I'll be expecting some more exciting wins from these two in the New Year.
Our Show Secretary, Mrs Norma Barnes, reports an entry of 26 Canaans with a total of 39 entries at our first Club Open Show scheduled to take place on the 11th November. This will be the largest gathering of Canaan Dogs in this country to-date. Well done to all those who have made an effort to support the Club and our judge, Mr Martin Freeman. Results of the show will be published in our favourite dog paper—DOG WORLD of course!
I apologise for the lack of notes over the last few weeks. There has been a lot going on and time was a premium as I put the final touches on our new PowerPoint slide show presentation, which Richard and I used at our recent breed seminar, 29th September. We are always looking for ways to improve and update the means by which to educate judges and Canaan owners while still keeping things light and enjoyable. They say a picture is worth a 1000 words and that is certainly true when you are trying to get over breed points. The event went over very well and we are already looking for a date and venue for next year's seminar.
Richard and I had a lovely 5-day visit in Switzerland with Kurt and Catherine Vogt, their two little girls, Patsy and Michelle, and their two Canaans, “Tikvah” and “Simcha” (both obtained from me). The weather was glorious and very warm. The second day we were there the Vogts took us to the Alps and onto the longest cable car ride in the world. The only problem is that I'm afraid of heights, which made it difficult for me to enjoy the view of the Eiger. We then walked down the mountain path for 1-1/2 hours, with me walking as far away from the edge as possible, then took a train the rest of the way down the mountain. I was so happy to reach the bottom!
We also had a chance to visit with Nicole Beeri while there. Nicole has a Tunisian-born Canaan Dog named “Indi” whom she rescued from the woman who brought him to Switzerland when he was about 4-5 weeks old. Nicole, as are many of the Swiss, is quite involved in working with her dog and training him for agility. On the 6th September there was a meeting held in Switzerland, which was also attended by some Germans, as there is not club and few owners in either country. The group plans to meet again next year on the 8th September and we have offered our assistance in helping them get their club going if assistance is needed or wanted.
Upon our return home on the Friday, I came down with a tummy bug which both of the Vogt's little girls had. Catherine and Kurt also came down with the bug over the weekend. I haven't been that ill in quite a while and am still not able to eat much. (I know, I know…that's not a bad thing for me!) However as our annual Inter-Club Rare Breed Match was being held on that Sunday, 7th October, it mean poor Richard had to do all the last minute running around, collecting trophies and buying food for the event, while all I could do was struggle to get the catalogue completed. The Rare Breed Match went very well, despite my absence. Judge, Juliette Cunliffe, found her Best In Match in the Finnish Lapphund bitch, SULYKA MISCHA AT ELBERETH, owned by Toni Jackson. Best Puppy in Match was David and Hazel Braddock's Canaan bitch, “Tanya” (Babrees the Milky Way). Best Canaan Dog was our dog, ANACAN ZIGGY; Best Hovawart was a bitch, PAYSBAS AEV, owned by Yvonne Brason; and Best Portuguese Water Dog and Res BIM was the dog GRANDWAYS FIREWATR AT GEMSON, owned by Mrs C Green. The overall winning team was the Portuguese Water Dog team, followed by a tied second place between the Hovawarts and the Finnish Lapphunds with the Canaans coming last. We also have a competition for the Reserve dogs for each team and Best of the Reserves went to Mrs C Green's Portuguese Water Dog bitch, Grandways Raven Water.
After a good run of 8 years, this will be the last of these matches, unless another of the clubs wishes to take on the running of it. It has become increasingly difficult to get cooperation from the other clubs. Over the last few years several clubs have not even bothered to reply to the invitation to participate, and two different club secretaries were very rude in their replies. There also seems to be a lack of team spirit within some members of The Canaan Dog Club as well. It just would have been nice for the Canaan Dog team to have won the match, just for once. However, I do wish to thank the participating clubs for their patronage and for entering into the spirit of things.
While reading some recent critiques I have noticed that some judges still do not know the difference between “tail set” and “tail carriage”. According to the “Glossary of Canine Terms”, tail set is “the position of the tail on the croup”. The Canaan Dog standard requires a high tail set. As we teach in our breed seminars, this is more than aesthetic requirement as the extensor muscles, which drive the rear quarters, start at the tail. If the tail set is low, these muscles are shorter and the dog will have less drive in the rear. A high tail set means longer muscles and better drive. Tail carriage, on the other hand, is the position in which the tail is carried by the dog. Canaans' tails are carried over the back when excited or alert. You will also see the tail over the back when they are facing off with another dog. The trend to hold the Canaan Dog tail over its back when being shown was not started in this country; indeed that is how it is shown in Israel and the rest of the world. If the Canaan generally held its tail over its back, it would not be necessary for the handler to do it for them. We have video footage of Canaans in Israel, at two World Shows, the USA and around Bedouin camps proving that even champion Canaans do not always hold their tail over their back while gaiting. THIS HAS NOTHING TO DO WITH TAIL SET.
A “ewe neck” and “smaller type” were also mentioned in a critique. The definition of a ewe neck is “concave curvature of the top neckline.” I have only ever seen one Canaan Dog with a ewe neck, back in the '80s in the USA, so I cannot quite understand the reference to this fault. As to “small type”, the Canaan is a medium-sized breed 50-60cm in height (20-24 inches), usually males being considerably larger than females. However, as long as the Canaan falls within the height range called for, is balanced, and looks appropriately masculine, if a male, or feminine, if a bitch, one should not “size judge”. The fact of the matter is that we have more problems with some Canaans verging on being too big. I've not yet seen an undersized Canaan in the UK—though I have in Europe and in the USA. Type is “the characteristic qualities distinguishing a breed”, and in Canaans there is no such thing as “small type”.
The new Canaan Dog Club Judges' List and Criteria is available to Club Secretaries and can be obtained either from The Canaan Dog Club Secretary (me) or from TKC. It has also been posted on The Canaan Dog Club website: www.anacan.demon.co.uk
Congratulations are in order for several Canaan owners overseas: to Donna Dodson (USA) whose 8-month old dog, Pleasant Hill Thaddeus won BOB at the Israel Canaan Dog Club of America National Specialty held the 13th July; to Myrna Shiboleth (Israel) whose dog, Isr CH Barak Mishaar Hagai is now also a Luxembourg Champion; to Inna Blayvas (Israel) whose first homebred dog, Arie Yerushalayim Shel Zahav (“Rick”) is now an Israeli champion; and to Riikka Turunen (Finland) whose FIN CH Kirifix Just A Gigolo & FIN CH Kirifix Join The Tango became Swedish Champions and whose Kirifix King Of Hearts became a Finnish Champion. Well done to all of you!
At Richmond Canaans were shown in AVNSC, which was judged by Mr G Corrish. Lorna Hastings' Lorianna Lucky Star was the only Canaan with a real result as she was once again Best Puppy. Congratulations!
In the aftermath of the tragedy in the USA last week I was not really looking forward to going to Darlington. Such horrors really help put things into perspective, at least for some people. The three minutes of silence to honour the dead was held directly prior to the Canaan judging and I found myself sobbing. I would like to stop here to thank everyone who has phoned me or spoken to me in person offering his or her sympathies. Thankfully I did not personally lose anyone, but as a native New Yorker and with family still there, the shock of seeing my beloved city hit this way has been overwhelming. I appreciate all the support and words of concern.
Mr Bob Gregory presided over our ring at Darlington and he awarded BD and BOB to our “Digger” (The Lion of Judah At Anacan), which puts “Digger” in the lead for the DW/Pedigree Top Canaan award. BB and BOS was Lorna Hastings' Anacan Forever Amber With Lorianna, a “Digger” daughter. Res BD was Anacan Ziggy, owned by Richard and I, and Res BB and BP was Brian & Phillipa Pearce's Babrees The Cosmic Cracker. Unfortunately for Lorna, she missed the judging of the puppy class and so her “Star” was not shown, which greatly upset Lorna.
Had a note from Jan McLeod giving me the exciting news that at Treherbert & D.C.S. Open Show on Sunday 16th September her “Abraham” (Anacan The Israelite At Dunline) was Best AVNSC Utility and then went on to win a Group 4 under judge, Mrs Howie. Well done!
Schedules are now out for The Canaan Dog Club's first Open Show. Show Secretary, Mrs Norma Barnes, has gone to great effort to make sure every Canaan owner has received one, but if you were inadvertently left out, contact me and I will see that you get one. We encourage all Canaan owners, whether you normally show or not, to enter your dog as there are appropriate classes for beginners. There are loads of trophies on offer and it should be a fun, and certainly historic, day for the breed.
(A correction to my last set of breed notes, with an apology. The Res BD at Welsh KC was the McLeod's younger dog, Anacan Call Me Ishmael At Dunline (aka “Jake”), and not their “Abraham” as mistakenly printed. However, Jan writes that “Abraham” (Anacan The Israelite At Dunline) was put through the Utility classes at Langstone & D.C.S. on the 26th August and kept in for the last 4 for BIS by the judge, Mr Peter Jolley. Well done!
Lorna Hasting's “Star” and “Amber” were the only two Canaans at the recent Scottish KC Championship Show. Lorianna Lucky Star is a 'little star' as in AVNSC Working, Pastoral, Utility and Toy she was 1st in Junior, BP and BOS! She was also entered in AV Rare Breed where she was again 1st in Junior and BP. Super going!
The AVNSC Utility at City of Birmingham could have been Canaan Dog classes as we were the only breed entered, as is getting to more and more be the case in AVNSC. Valerie Foss presided over our ring and found her Best AVNSC in my “Digger” (The Lion of Judah at Anacan). Res BD was Rob & Jan McLeod's “Abraham” (Anacan The Israelite At Dunline. BB, BP and BOS was Hasting's Lorianna Lucky Star and Res BB was McLeod's Anacan Milk and Honey At Dunline.
Michelle Powell told Richard that she sent Int Ch Waltzun Romeo back to his owner in Finland after using him to sire a litter for herself. “Rontti”, as he is called, was shown only twice while here and seemed to be a very nice dog with a lovely temperament. It is a shame there are not some bitches unrelated to Michelle's “Kelsey” that “Rontti” could have been used on while he was in the UK. Bringing in a dog from overseas to be bred to only one bitch is quite an expensive way to try to obtain some new genes. It would be very helpful if TKC would make it easier to import semen and if more vets were trained in doing artificial inseminations.
As most of you know, AI is quite common practice in my homeland, the USA, as it is a big country. Some bitches do go out of heat when shipped to be bred, and there is also always the worry that something could go wrong in the shipping, or that the stress could cause the bitch to abort. Therefore AI became fairly common practice when people started to breed to dogs on the other side of the country. I don't feel it is any more subject to fraud then a “natural” breeding, and because of the veterinarians' involvement, probably less so. It would be a boon to the rare breeds if it became easier to have AI's done as we could then use dogs from outside the pet passport countries as well. Perhaps someday!
The Canaan Dog Club's Inter-Club Rare Breed Match will once again be held at St Leonard's Church Hall in Watlington, Oxon on Sunday, 7th October. This year's judge is Miss Juliette Cunliffe – a person with a sincere interest in the rare breeds. Teams are being put forward by the Hovawarts, Finnish Spitz, Portuguese Water Dogs and, of course, Canaan Dogs. We are hoping to be blessed with good weather as in past years allowing the event to be held outdoors.
Brenda Williams has asked me to mention the following. The Nordic Show, which is hosted by the Finnish Spitz Club for all Spitz Breeds, will be held Saturday 24th November 2001 at The Sports Connexion, Ryton on Dunsmore, Nr Coventry. Schedules can be obtained from Brenda Williams, tel. 01279 812463, e-mail Williams@rustins.freeserve.co.uk. Schedules have been sent to last year's exhibitors. I believe that the Canaan Dog judge this year is Mrs Christine Hughes. The Nordic was one of the first shows to give classes to Canaans years ago and I hope that all Canaan exhibitors will support it.
For the first time since we started showing in this country, Richard and I did not enter a Canaan at Bournemouth Championship show due to what I shall call some personal tensions between the judge and ourselves. However I was there by ringside to watch the judging. After arriving relatively early to show my Tibetan Spaniels, Richard and I had to wait around literally hours as the Canaans were shown at the end of the day. This was no fun for Richard as he had worked the night before and had driven me to the show having had no sleep—unfortunately, nothing unusual for him. The Utility Group was called to the ring several times before the Canaan judging was finished. Mr Presland found his BOB in O'Loughlin's Tzel Schacmac Among Caolita and awarded BOS to Terry's Layla Me Shaar Hagai. BP and Res BB was Hastings' Lorianna Lucky Star.
During the Saturday morning of the Welsh KC show exhibitors' cars were queued up for quite a distance as each car was disinfected and all humans were asked to step on a disinfectant mat at the entrance to the grounds in response to the recent outbreaks of foot and mouth disease in the area. So many exhibitors were late for their classes that judging was held up on two occasions to give people a chance to get to their rings. The weather was also uncooperative, but fortunately the showground has decent-sized wet weather rings in the buildings. Mrs Liz Cartlege presided over the Canaan ring at Welsh KC, which gave classes to the breed for the first time. It is a bit unfortunate that we were not given better classifications as we had only JD/B, OD and OB, which makes it very difficult to give a supported entry. I had to enter 3 dogs in OD. It was nice to see so many puppies/juniors entered, which portends well for the breed. Richard and I were well pleased when Mrs Cartlege found her BOB in our “Digger” (The Lion of Judah At Anacan), making him tied for first place in the DW/Pedigree competition. Mrs Cartlege commented that she found it hard to believe that “Digger” was 7-1/2 years old. Canaans do age very well. Res BD was “Digger's” son, Anacan The Israelite At Dunline who is owned by Rob and Jan McLeod. BP, BB and BOS went to Lorna Hasting's Lorianna Lucky Star (a “Digger” granddaughter). Lorna was justifiably over the moon. Res BB was our “Beulah”.
As more people are now breeding Canaans in this country, with still very few good homes for the puppies available, it becomes increasingly important for those who are breeding to work together and coordinate the timing of their litters and the lines they use for the good of the breed. Canaan fanciers must strive to build a good foundation for those who will come after us. The breed is too small for petty jealousies and big egos. And while I am all for competition in the ring, it should end as you exit the ring. After 17 years in the breed I have seen more than once how destructive glory hunters can be to a breed. Unfortunately for the rare breeds they do attract those people who want to be “big fish in a little pond”. True and lasting success comes from hard work, a sense of dedication and, most importantly, love for your dogs.
For the first time since we started showing our Canaans in this country, Richard and I have not entered a Canaan at the Bournemouth Championship Show for personal reasons. However, I will be there, having entered my Tibetan Spaniels and plan to be at ringside when the Canaans are shown. You'll have my report in due course.
This time last week I, along with my friend, Barbara Gold, had just returned from a long weekend in Sweden visiting the two families to which I have sold Canaans. Zet and Jenny Wallin came to England a little over a year ago to meet Richard and I and all the Canaan Dogs of Anacan and to decide whether to adopt one of our puppies. We had a very nice visit, hitting it off very well, and the Wallins made a decision to add a Canaan to the family. When sufficient time had passed from his receiving his vaccinations in compliance with Swedish import laws, “Aragon” went to his new family.
It wasn't long after that Zet and Jenny's friends, Torsten and Ingrid Almen, met and fell in love with “Aragon”. Upon the Wallins' recommendation, the Almen's waited a year until we next bred to get a little girl from us. In the meantime, Zet and Jenny continuously invited Richard and I to visit so they could repay our hospitality. When the Almen's puppy, “Diandra”, was ready to set off for Sweden I had hoped to be able to accompany her. However, my boss was on holiday when “Diandra” was to leave and I had to be there to manage things for him. A couple of weeks later Richard found a very good flight deal on the internet and, at a week's notice, Barbara and I were off to Sweden while dear old Richard stayed home to take care of the dogs. We stayed at the Wallins summer home, situated on a little island outside Nykoping, where we swam in the Baltic Sea before breakfast and the water was an unbelievable 23°. We then visited the Torstens in Eskilstuna and spent our last night in Stockholm. The hospitality we were shown was fantastic (as was the food that was prepared for us) and I couldn't be more pleased with the homes both “Aragon” and “Diandra” have. Making friends around the world is one of the very pleasant benefits of being “in dogs”.
On a note of interest, there are now 5 Canaans in Sweden—2 from myself, 2 from Jill Terry and 1 from Finland, with a 6th from Alison Byrne soon to join them. So the population of Swedish Canaans will be made up almost entirely of British imports---something we could never have dreamed of only a few years ago. I'd say the breeders in the UK deserve a pat on the back for the remarkable strides we've made.
Lorna Hastings is kind enough to fill me in on the results of the shows I don't attend, as we don't do many AVNSC classes these days. East of England Championship Show was held on the 18th July 2001 and Mr Jim Outterside presided over the AVNSC Utility ring. For all intents and purposes it was a Canaan Dog class as no other breeds were entered. Rob and Jan McLeod's Anacan Call Me Ishmael At Dunline (“Jake”) was 1st in Junior Dog. 1st in PGD and RBD was O'Loughlins Tzel Schacmac Among Caolita with the McLeod's “Jake” taking 2nd. OD was won by the McLeod's Anacan the Israelite At Dunline (“Abraham”), who was also BD and Best AVNSC. Isabella Zirri's Int Ch Velikaya's Lahatutan was 2nd. 1st in PB and RBB was Lorna's Lorianna Lucky Star. 1st in JB and 1st in PGB was the McLeod's Anacan Milk and Honey At Dunline. 1st in OB and Res AVNSC was Terry's Layla Me Shaar Hagai, with Lorna's Anacan Forever Amber With Lorianna taking 2nd. At the Worthing & District Open Show on The 22nd July 2001 Mr J Carter judged AVNSC Utility. There were 8 entries in Puppy and Lorna's “Star” took a 2nd. Lorna also reports that “Star” is doing very well in her puppy agility class and is hoping to have her ready to compete at TKC's minimum age of 18 months. Here's to success! Leeds Champ Show on the 29th July 2001 saw Mr D Smith judging AVNSC Utility, Toy & Terrier. PGD was won by O'Loughlin's “Tzel” with 2nd going to the McLeod's “Jake”. OD, BD Best AVNSC was won by a Kerry Blue with the McLeod's “Abraham” taking 2nd and RBD. PB was won by a Havanese. Lorna's “Star” took 2nd followed by Terry's Babrees The Cosmic Spirit, the Pearce's Babrees The Cosmic Cracker and the Braddocks' Babrees The Milky Way (the last 3 obviously all being littermates). Lorna's “Amber” was 3RD in OB. It is lovely to see the number of Canaan being shown in this country growing and all the hard work put into the promotion of the breed paying off. Just a reminder, The Canaan Dog Club's next breed seminar will be held on the 29th September 2001 at St Leonard's Church Hall in Watlington, Oxon. For more information or to reserve a place for yourself please contact Barbara Gold at: email@example.com Some more exciting new, The Canaan Dog Club will be holding its first club Open Show on the 11th November 2001 at St Leonard's Church Hall, Watlington, Oxon. Mr Martin Freeman has the honour of judging this historical event. Prof P.G.C. Bedford has agreed to hold an eye clinic in conjunction with the show so that we can have our dogs' eyes certified under the B.V.A. scheme. Carol Ann Johnson will be the show photographer. Show Secretary, Norma Barnes, has the organisation well in hand and schedules will soon be going out. The closing date for entries will be the 11th October 2001.
Just to clear up some confusion, the address of the official website of The Canaan Dog Club is www.anacan.demon.co.uk
As a follow-up to what I wrote in my last set of breed notes with regard to some of our Canaan fanciers starting agility classes, Lorna Hastings has sent me the following report on her "Star" (Lorianna Lucky Star). "Star" is doing very well in her puppy agility class. She will sit a wait, and then do a recall over four jumps that are 6 inches high max. She is very confident going through the tunnel, a low tyre, a low A-frame and dog walk and is using the training weaves wonderfully. Everyone at the club thinks she is showing a lot of promise. Training will continue throughout the year and hopefully "Star" will be ready to compete in the ring at 18 months of age (which is TKC minimum age for agility competition). We'll look forward to seeing "Star" compete in agility. Perhaps she'll be the first Canaan in this country to do so.
This year, as we are trying to work on our house, Richard and I are not taking in many shows which do not have Canaan Dog classes. Lorna Hastings has been kind enough to send some results, and I spend a lot of time on the Internet finding others, as Lorna is the only one (other than those results I receive from abroad) sending any to me, This may mean I may miss some. If you wish to see your wins in this column, kindly advise me of them.
At the East of England show the AVNSC Utility may as well have been Canaan classes with 8 entered. Judge, Jim Outterside found his BD and Best AVNSC in Rob & Jan McLeod's Anacan The Israelite At Dunline with BB and Res Best AVNSC going to Jill & Ian Terry's Layla me Shaar Hagai. RBB and BP was Lorna's "Star".
Inna Blayvas (Jerusalem) emailed me that on Friday, 29th June, her "Rick" (Arie me Yerushalaim Shel Zahav) won BOB at the Israeli Spitz Club show. "Rick" also was awarded his second CAC. Inna was absolutely thrilled as this was first time in her life that she won BOB. Mazel tov!
Riikka Turunen (Finland) emailed me to tell me that they have had 3 International Shows to-date, 2 in Sweden and 1 big Nordic Winner Show in Finland with the following results:
7.7.2001 Sweden: Byske INT, judge Myrna Shiboleth
FIN CH Kirifix Just A Gigolo: BOB, CAC, CACIB = SWE CH
FIN CH Kirifix Join The Tango: BOS, CAC, CACIB = SWE CH
8.7.2001 Sweden: Piteo INT, judge Tuula Hamalainen
FIN & SWE CH Kirifix Just A Gigolo: BOB, CACIB
FIN & SWE CH Kirifix Join The Tango: BOS, CACIB.
12.7.2001 Finland, Tuusula INT Nordic Winner 2001, judge Elina Haapaniemi
FIN CH Anacan Diplomat at Kirifix: BOB, CACIB = Nordic Winner 2001
LVJW-00, LVW-00 Kirifix King Of Hearts: Best Male-2, CAC, RES-CACIB = became FIN CH
Multi CH Kirifix Giggiolina: BOS, CACIB = Nordic Winner 2001
FIN & SWE CH Kirifix Join The Tango: Best Bitch-3
Riikka's breeders group was BOB as well.
Riikka informed me that his win on the 12th July made her "Andy" (Anacan Diplomat At Kirifx, who is by our Anacan Ziggy out of our Anacan Sheindela) the Top Canaan Dog in Finland. She said, "Like father, like son." Congratulations from the proud "grandmother".
Last, but very far from least bit of news, there were 29 Canaans entered at the Israel Canaan Dog Club of America National Specialty, which was held on the 13th July 2001 at St. Francis Friary in Burlington, Wisconsin. Judge, Delberta Gogulski, did the honours. Donna Dodson (USA) wrote that it was her homebred Pleasant Hill Thaddeus who won BOB and her Pleasant Hill Alexandra ("Sondra") who was Best Bitch. What a thrill for her! Congratulations!
There is a correction to my last breed notes due to a typographical error. The Canaan Dog breed seminar will be held on Saturday, 29th September and not the 20th as printed.
Alison Byrne reports that her affix has been approved and is now officially NIZZANA. It is very gratifying to hear of all the new affixes in Canaan Dogs as they are representative of the growth the breed is experiencing.
Speaking of which, when Richard and I first started showing our dogs here in 1995 there were very few breed classes given to Canaans. We were usually in huge AVNSC classes up against the Leonbergers and the likes of Manorguard Adam and the Schnauzer, CH Kinjhan American Express. Of course Leonbergers are no longer in NSC and more and more frequently nowadays AVNSC is made up of primarily, and sometimes solely, Canaan Dogs.
Canaans dominated the Utility & Gundog AVNSC at Windsor with 7 entered. Jill Terry was over-the-moon when her Layla me Shaar Hagai won Best AVNSC there under judge, Ann Arch. Ann gave Layla her first BOB at the BUBA show shortly after Layla came out of quarantine. Lorna Hastings was also well pleased that her Anacan Forever Amber With Lorianna went Reserve to Layla. Then it was Pam O'Loughlin's turn to celebrate when her Tzel Schacmat Among Caoilta won his first BOB under judge Keith Nathan at South Wales. Lorna's “Amber” was BB and BOS.
So far this year we have had 4 championship shows which give classes for Canaans and a different dog has taken BOB at each one. However, since “Amber” has won two BOS, she is now in the lead for the DW/Pedigree Top Canaan Dog. Well done “Amber”!
Canaan Dogs have been doing very well in agility in the US for some time now, as previously reported here. We now have several Canaans over here starting out with agility training—Lorna's “Amber” and “Star” and, just recently, Jane & Doug Bateman's “Sheba” and Barbara & Patrick Gold's “Simba” and “Athtar”. Whether they will ever go into competition remains to be seen, but the dogs and owners are enjoying themselves in any case. I'm hoping we'll see a Canaan competing in agility in the UK in the not too distant future.
By the time you read these notes you will most likely have already heard about our Anacan Ziggy's BIS at Gravesend & Medway Open Show under Mr Martin Freeman. We will still be up on cloud 9 as this was not only a personal success for our Canaans and us, it is also another milestone in the saga of the Canaan Dog in the UK. God bless judges like Mr Freeman and Juliette Cunliffe who are courageous enough to give such a prestigious award to a minority breed they felt deserved it.
Lorna Hastings reported that at the Blackpool Championship show Rob & Jan McLeod's Anacan The Israelite At Dunline took yet another Best AVNSC, and her Lorianna Lucky Star was Best Puppy. Congratulations!
There were 8 Canaans entered at the World Show in Portugal with one absent. Isabella Zirri (Italy) travelled to by car along with Myrna Shiboleth (Israel), who had flown into Italy. However, their long journey was well worth it. Isabella's Velikaya's Pizmon (bitch) was BOB and Myrna's dog, Barak me Shaar Hagai was BOS. Isabella's Velikaya's Shagrir was also Best Junior. Well done!
The Canaan Dog Club will be holding it's next breed seminar on Saturday the 29th September at St Leonard's Church Hall, Watlington, Oxon. This is another chance to hear Richard and I speak. We actually have some people coming for the third time as they said they find it enjoyable! Attendance is limited to 20 people to keep it fairly intimate. If you are interested and would like more information, contact me.
There is a correction to the ad I ran in DOG WORLD a couple of weeks ago celebrating my "Remy's" (Anacan Masterpiece) Res BD win at Crufts. "Remy" was born in 1999 and not 1995 as printed. (They're trying to make you older than you are son.)
Speaking of "Remy", he became a father for the first time on Father's Day when Alison Byrne & Ivan Kaye's "Livvi" (Babrees Bat Benyas) gave birth to 4 boys and a girl. They are a lovely mixture of colours with 3 creams, a solid black boy and a black and white boy. Hopefully some will end up in the show ring next year.
I would love to hear from some of you.
Crufts has now come and gone. When the postponement was announced, it seemed so very far away. I know I was not the only one to feel that the normal Crufts atmosphere and excitement seemed to be missing. This was possibly due in part to attendance being down as it was a bank holiday weekend, the kids were on a break and the weather was lovely. There were 17 entries in Canaan Dogs and Richard and I were very proud that three of the four top placements were either owned or bred by Anacan. BOS was our Kibutzer Kween In Kofyn; Res BD was our Anacan Masterpiece and Res BB was Lorna Hastings' Anacan Forever Amber With Lorianna. Judge, Peter Jolley, gave the top award of BOB to the Italian dog, Multi Ch. Velikaya's Lahatutan, owned by Isabella Zirri and handled by one of Italy's top professional handlers, Thomas Wastiaux, who is a neighbour friend of Isabella. I was about ready to collapse from the heat after many laps around the ring with 4 of my Canaans. I couldn't believe Thomas could remain so cool in his leather jacket and trousers! But then he is more fit than I am and only had to run around with one dog. Thomas and his business partner, Mia, told Lorna Hastings and I that this year they had brought with them only 5 dogs for their clients (just the one Canaan) as they were testing the water. Now that they know their way around Crufts, they intend to come with several more dogs next year.
Lorna Hastings and Rob and Jan McLeod ventured on up to the Scottish Kennel Club Show where the McLeod's “Abraham” (Anacan The Israelite At Dunline) won Best AVNSC Utility and their “Debra” (Anacan Milk and Honey At Dunline) was BOS under judge, Les Aspin. Lorna's puppy “Star” (Lorianna Lucky Star) was BP, then in a brace with her mum, Anacan Forever Amber With Lorianna, won 4th place out of a large entry. As this was “Star's” first show, it was all the more exciting a win. Southern Counties saw Lorna's and the McLeod's Canaans keeping up the breed profile. Carol Harwood judged AVNSC Utility and Gundog and Jan & Rob McLeod's “Abraham” won Res Best AVNSC and their “Jake” (Anacan Call Me Ishmael At Dunline) won Junior Dog. Lorna's “Star” won Best PB in AV Rare Breed and Res BB, but in her hurry to get to one of the stakes classes, Lorna forgot that “Star” should have stayed to compete for Best Puppy. Bet she won't do that again.
As I mentioned in previous notes, the UK will be seeing more Canaan puppies born here this year than ever before. On the Canaan Dog Internet chat list long-time breeder, Donna Dodson (Pleasant Hill) USA made some pertinent remarks, listing some of the reasons for which she has had puppies returned to her. Most of the reasons given are ones that could really apply to any breed—1) the puppy is biting us and won't stop; 2) the puppy is chewing up the furniture; 3) the puppy has 'no will to serve' [this from an instructor who didn't understand the natural dog and wouldn't bother to take the time]; 4) we can't take the puppy in the car as it gets carsick every time; 5) the puppy eats the shrubbery; and 6) the one that really disgusts them - the puppy is eating his stool. Donna commented that these are just a few of the more common behaviours that we see in our pups, which must be explained to potential buyers. Buyers need to be educated as to how to deal with those behaviours before they become problems. I agree with Donna on this and feel that breeders are morally obligated to be honest when telling people the pros and cons of owning a Canaan puppy and the buyer must also feel that they can come back the breeder for help with any problems that they might experience with their dog. On the other hand, potential buyers should be just as honest with the breeder as to what they expect of a Canaan puppy. Honesty works both ways.
This year will see another milestone in Canaan Dog history. With two litters on the ground, two more on the way and the possibility of two more at the end of the year, there will be more Canaan puppies than this country has ever before seen. Somewhat sadly, because the Canaan is not for everyone and we are as a whole careful with puppy placements, there will not be enough homes for all the puppies in this country. This has already, and will continue to result in the export of some fine quality dogs. I used the term “somewhat sadly” because ideally we would like to see all the best Canaans stay in this country. On the other hand it wasn't very long ago that England was the last place anyone thought of from which to import a Canaan Dog. English-bred Canaan Dogs can now be found in nine countries, so we can look at the current export situation as something to be proud of. English-bred Canaans are making their mark!
Once again I will ask club secretaries to get in touch with The Canaan Dog Club before scheduling classes for CDs. I know I have made a similar statement not long ago in this column, but it seems to have fallen on deaf ears. Though it looks as if there will be a bumper crop of puppies for next year, we never know how many will end up in show homes. Canaan exhibitors do want to support the classes given to the breed with good entries, but age classes can be dodgy. This year several clubs have given us puppy and junior classifications when, currently, there is only one puppy and two junior dogs in the entire country. In a situation such as this, combined sex classes for puppy and junior would make sense. Enough said.
Israeli photographer, Pardo Yigal, was kind enough to email me some photos of a wild-born Canaan male taken as he was captured for Israeli breeder, Myrna Shiboleth. The dog, which is cream-coloured, appears to be very handsome and well made. It will be interesting to see what kind of puppies he throws. In Israel they have a system of registering wild-born Canaans, which is called “miun”. I will quote from Ms Shiboleth, regarding miun. “To be registered in the (Israeli) Studbook, a dog must fulfil two requirements – he must be judged by a licensed judge of the breed as being at least “Very Good” according to the breed standard. He must then be bred to a fully pedigreed and proven Canaan, and the offspring are then judged for their apparent purity and conformity to type. Judging of wild-born dogs and of their offspring can only be done when they have attained a minimum of nine months of age.” Photos of this newly captured dog, as well as a few other free-living Canaans, can be seen in the Photo Gallery of The Canaan Dog Club website – http://www.anacan.demon.co.uk
Lorna Hastings took some video footage of the European Show and the Canaan Dog Show, as well as some of the dogs around the Bedouin camps she was taken to during her visit to Israel last month. I found it very interesting and hope to incorporate some of it into the next breed seminar Richard and I give, which will (hopefully) take place in September. I will keep you posted.
We had a telephone call from Isak Korn in Denmark who has our black Digger/Beulah son, Anacan Leib Ein H'Arava. “Leib” was, at the time Isak and his wife, Nina, acquired him 16 months ago, the only Canaan Dog in Denmark. There is now one other that I know of. It seems that “Leib” is the subject of a 4-page article in the Danish Kennel Club magazine "Hunden" which includes 7 or 8 photos of him. Apparently this article has generated quite a bit of interest in the breed. Isak promised to send us a copy of the magazine and I'm looking forward to receiving it.
The Canaan Dog Specialty show was held in Israel on the 26th April. Due to the fact that the date of the show was changed only recently from the 24th to the 26th to coincide with Israel Independence Day, the scheduled judge, Janicki Steinbok, was unable to fulfil her assignment. Apparently there was a last-minute scramble for a judge. As there was no one else available, Agnes Kertes Ganani, who had just officiated at the Europe show on the 21st, again judged Canaans. This, along with an entry of only 15 Canaan Dogs, was, I'm sure, a disappointment to all concerned. The results, courtesy of Inna Blayvas, are as follow:
Velikaya's Shuvi HaBayta, breeder Isabella Zirri, owner Myrna Shiboleth (Israel),
Very Promising-1, Puppy Class Winner, Best Puppy In Show.
“Rick” (Arie me Yerushalaim Shel Zahav), breeder/owner Inna Blayvas (Israel), Excellent -1, Open Class Winner, CAC, Best Dog –2.
Velikaya's Shaashua, breeder/owner Isabella Zirri (Italy), Excellent-2, ReCAC.
C. Shachmat me Shaar Hagai, bred by Myrna Shiboleth, owned by Dorcas Aharon, Excellent-1, Veteran Class Winner, Best Veteran In Show, Best Dog – 3. (Note: Shachmat is 13 years old!)
CH Barak me Shaar Hagai, breeder/owner Shiboleth, Excellent-1, Champion Class Winner, Best Dog, BOB.
Velikaya's Pizmon, breeder/owner Zirri, Excellent -1, Open Class Winner, CAC, Best Bitch, BOS.
Toffee me Shaar Hagai, breeder/owner by Myrna Shiboleth, Excellent-2, ReCAC.
CH Velikaya's Shehev, breeder/owner Zirri, Excellent-1, Champion Class Winner, Best Bitch – 2.
Velikaya's won the Breeding Group competition. Barak and Toffee won Best Brace competition. “Rick” with Avi Lurie (11 years old) won Junior Handler competition.
Inna was very pleased that her “Rick” earned his first CAC. Isabella's “Pippi” (V. Pizmon) received her last CAC and finished her Israeli Championship. I'm sure that Myrna and Isabella were also pleased with their respective dog and bitch's reserve CAC's as, just as with our reserve CC's, the reserve CAC would be awarded the win should the winning dog or bitch be disqualified for any reason.
It was interesting to learn from Jackie Efrati, Jerusalem SPCA, that they have a large number of Canaan Dogs in their rescue facilities. Jackie said, “The problem is that Canaan Dogs are so plentiful and people so disdainful about anything "homegrown" (plus the fact that apartments here are much smaller) that there isn't a large demand for Canaan Dogs anywhere in Israel.” So trying to rehome them is a real problem. I asked where they all came from and she answered, “Some have wandered from the Bedouin encampments near the shelter to residential neighbourhoods and army bases where they have found their way into kind people's hands until a space opened up at the shelter. Others are definitely the result of doggie dumping and unwanted litters. (I can safely say that none is due to breeders.) They are so common here, that for all but the real dedicated Canaan Dog lovers, one can literally pluck them off the street.” This is a heartbreaking situation, but due to quarantine still being an issue for dogs from Israel, it is not one we can realistically help with, at least on any large scale. I guess the old saying, “Familiarity breeds contempt”, is true.
When one looks at the pedigrees of all the Canaans that have been born in this country, the UK actually has a larger genepool then most, if not all, European countries. However, since all the dogs in the UK are not available for breeding purposes, it is still a good idea to try to bring in new blood from time-to-time. The problem is that it is very difficult to locate anything in Europe that does not already have the same lines in its pedigree that already appear in our UK Canaans. When the Pet Passport scheme encompasses some more countries, especially the USA, and/or it becomes easier to get permission for, and to arrange for, artificial insemination, the possibility of bringing in some truly new lines will become more viable.
I have received the results of the European International Dog Show held on 21st April 2001 at Gahei Taarukka Exhibition Centre Park, Israel courtesy of Lorna Hastings, who is visiting Israel, and Inna Blayvas, who lives in Jerusalem. The judge was Agnes Kertes Ganani who had 13 entries with 2 absentees. Lorna explained to me that foreign champions not resident in Israel are eligible for the title Israel Champion upon winning the Champion class, and all BOB and BOS automatically become Tel Aviv Winners.
From the Open Bitch class (4 entries, 1 absent), Velikaya's Pizmon bred & owned by Isabella Zirri (Italy) – CAC, CACIB, Tel-Aviv Winner 2001, European Winner 2001, BB, BOB. “Pippi” was shortlisted in the Group 5, judged by Avi Marshak, but unfortunately was not placed.
From the Champion Bitch class (1 entry), It CH Velikaya's Shenef, breeder/owner Zirri – Israel Champion, ReCACIB.
From the Male Champion class (3 entries), Isr CH Barak me Shaar Hagai, breeder/owner Myrna Shiboleth (Israel) – CACIB, Tel-Aviv Winner 2001, European Winner 2001, BD, BOS
From the Open Male class (1 entry), Velikaya's Sha'shu'a, breeder/owner Zirri - CAC, ReCACIB.
From the Male Junior class (1 entry), Arie me Yerushalayim Shel Zahav, breeder/owner Inna Blayvas (Israel) - Junior Tel-Aviv Winner 2001, Junior European Winner 2001, Best Junior.
The Israeli Herding Dog Club also put on a show in Netanya on the 22nd April. It was a national C.A.C. show for Herding breeds and Canaan dogs only and was judged by Avi Marshak. Isabella had the only Canaans there and they placed as follows:
Open Bitch, 1 entry, Velikaya's Pizman, C.A.C. and BOS.
Open Dog, 1 entry, Velikaya's Sha'ashu'a, C.A.C. and BOB
Champion Bitch, 1 entry, Velikaya's Shenef, Excellent 1
The Canaan Dog specialty show is being held on the 26th April and I will post the results in my next column.
Lorna reports that an interesting seminar was put on for the visitors with speakers, Dvora Ben Shaul and Avi Marshak. Myrna Shiboleth provided lots of photos and a video that were very much enjoyed. Lorna also go the chance to see some free-living Canaans around some Bedouin camps, which she has videoed for us. Richard and I had the privilege of doing the same when we attended the first International Canaan Dog Show in Israel in November '93. It would have been great to have the opportunity to go back, but we will have to settle for Lorna's full report when she returns.
Birmingham National was my first championship show of the year and I must admit it felt good to be there. Mr Tom Mather judged Canaan Dogs for the first time and had prepared well by reading both editions of Myrna Shiboleth's book on the breed, as well as studying the breed standard. He had a wonderful approach with the dogs as evidenced by their response to him (not even the youngsters pulled away from him). There were 16 Canaans entered with 4 absentees. It was just too bad that the society gave us an age class (JD/B), as currently there are only two junior dogs in the breed. I personally had to put 3 dogs in Open and find the people to help handle. (I have mentioned before that show secretaries should enquire of The Canaan Dog Club to find out which classes would draw the best entry.) Best Junior went to the dog, Anacan Call Me Ishmael At Dunline (“Jake”) owned by Rob and Jan McLeod. BD and BOB was the McLeod's Anacan The Israelite At Dunline (“Abraham”) and BB and BOS was won by Doug and Jane Bateman's Babrees Beersheba Delight (“Sheba”). It was lovely to have at ringside Juliette Cunliffe who had awarded “Abraham” BIS at City of Bristol in February. Terry Nethercott and Dr Ruth Barbour were also amongst the spectators and Carol Ann Johnson took a number of photos for us. The “Anacans” were also shown in the Utility Breeders' Stakes. Taking 4th place was the “family group” Anacan Masterpiece, Anacan Forever Amber, Anacan The Israelite At Dunline and Anacan Call Me Ishmael.
I said I would speak on colour. It is very difficult to register our Canaans' colours correctly here in the UK as TKC Registration Department often changes what is written down on the registration papers by the breeder as the pups' colour. The Canaan Dog carries the spotting gene. I've never seen a “solid-coloured” dog without at least a few white hairs, usually on the chest and feet. The Canaan Dog breed standards of the FCI and other countries speak of “Boston Terrier patterns” as being common. However, this is very different than a patched, or spotted, or as Dr Menzel used to call them, harlequin Canaans. In the patched coat white will be the predominant colour with patches of colour varying in size. When I have attempted to register a patched dog, for example as white with sand patches, TKC has sent back papers saying “white and sandy”. This is NOT the same as white with patches. Similarly when I've tried to register some solid dogs as “sand with white trim” (which is the correct terminology) it will come back sand with white. This will make it very difficult for future breeders to know what colour pattern their dog's ancestors had in fact.
A black mask is permitted on all colours. This does not mean that the mask must be black. A mask can be self-coloured, such as a lighter shade of sand or cream on a sand-coloured dog, or a hooded mask, i.e. a solid coloured head on a patched dog…for example a solid black head on a black and white patched dog or a solid red head on a red and white patched dog. A mask must cover both eyes and should be symmetrical. A black muzzle is not a black mask, though this is also acceptable on all colours. Therefore, as an example, a sand and white patched dog with a black mask is NOT considered a tri-colour and is perfectly acceptable. Shaded brown, where brown may be shaded with some black, usually at the edges is acceptable. TKC should allow a place on the registration sheet to indicate that the dog is masked, again in the interest of future breeders.
The colour red is indicative of a dog whose coat is red-sand in colour right up to a deep red. Red, as well as gold-coloured Canaans are born a muddy brown colour, usually with a lot of black shading. The colour clears as the puppies grow, but it can be difficult to determine the adult colour of such puppies when registering them at a young age. Sand-coloured can range from very pale tan, to beige, to gold. Cream is off-white, usually with sand colouring on the body.
Correct coat in a Canaan Dog is coarse, not silky, short-medium in length with a dense woolly undercoat. Black dogs with a longer woolly undercoat all seem to have a grey or reddish undercoat, which does show through the guard hairs. Black or black and white patched Canaans with the closer undercoat and coarser guard hairs usually have black undercoat, which looks shinier and blacker than the blacks with woolly coats. Both coats are equally acceptable. Lack of correct undercoat is not.
If I have thoroughly confused you, let me know and I'll attempt to clarify things. One of the aims of the International Canaan Dog Working Party is to attempt to standardise what each of us calls a colour…is it beige, sand or gold? type of thing.
Lorna Hastings is off to Israel as a spectator for the Europe Show, and the Canaan Dog Show and convention being held from the 21st April. I look forward to her report when she returns.
I was fortunate to have the opportunity to attend TKC's “April Full's (sic) Day of Seminars” at the invitation of Lorna Hastings. It was a well-organised event into which they packed a number of interesting speakers whom I enjoyed even more than I expected to.
I found our KC accredited trainer on 'Conformation and Movement', Valerie Foss, particularly interesting as she echoed so much of what we teach at our breed seminars. I was very pleased to hear her speak about 'fitness for function' and I quote, “It is a correct balance of breed points, fitness for function and structure which defines a breed.”
Two years ago we attempted to get TKC to change our breed standard, as the one in place was never voted on by the breed club membership and contains some errors. The section on general appearance is extremely vague and could apply to numerous breeds. One of the points we would like to see in our breed standard, and which I emphasise at our breed seminars is “the Canaan Dog should look like it is has the potential for survival in the desert,” i.e. 'fitness for function'. The Canaan Dog's main function in its natural habitat is survival, pure and simple. Yes the Bedouin have used it as a herd guardian, and yes it has been used in various capacities (mainly detection work) by the Israeli military. However the Canaan Dog's primary drive is survival. If it doesn't look like a dog which is capable of taking care of itself in the harsh Israeli environment, 'it ain't a Canaan'.
One of the other points Mrs Foss made along similar lines is that a dog's front and rear end should be constructed according to that breed's original function. She pointed out that a breed standard that calls for moderate angulation, as does that of the Canaan Dog, does so because that breed requires it for power and endurance. Any dog that needs to be capable of taking care of itself should have both of these attributes. The Canaan Dog's correct effortless, ground-covering trot does not expend wasted energy and contributes to its staying ability. A Canaan that is put together properly will move properly and demonstrate fitness for function.
Any comments? Next week we'll talk about colour.
I'd like to take this opportunity to thank Glenway Dymock and Elisabeth Matell for organising the Canaan Dog feature in the March 16th DOG WORLD. Our breed is not often given opportunities such as this and we do welcome the chance to promote the Canaan Dog whenever we can.
I must admit that I am not too upset over the cancellation of shows due to the foot and mouth disease crisis (though I am very much upset over the crisis and how its been handled). I think it is very easy for us diehard exhibitors to get ourselves onto a treadmill of sorts. I've just started my 24th year of showing dogs, and I must admit that I usually get withdrawal symptoms when several weeks go by without attending a show. However I do think it is very easy to get so wound up in showing and competition that it starts to become more of a chore than a pleasure. I am actually enjoying not having to rush home from work on a Friday night to get the dogs bathed for the following day. I'm enjoying just being with my dogs and puppies, and I know they are enjoying the break as well.
Admittedly the Canaan Dog is not the easiest breed to show. Youngsters will go through a nervous period, usually starting at approximately 10 months of age. How long this period will last will vary from dog to dog and depends, in part, on the owner's reaction to their behaviour. You must always think “wild” in relation to a Canaan as one of the Canaan's strongest drives, if not the strongest, is it survival instinct. In the wild if a Canaan were to go onto another pack's territory they would be risking their life. The 'fight or flight' instinct takes over. In most cases they will take flight because even if they were to win a fight, there is still a good chance they would be injured. An injured dog would be more at risk as it would find hunting difficult and it would be at a disadvantage if another dog attacked it.
When you take a Canaan Dog onto a showground, in their mind they are venturing onto another pack's territory. As there are thousands of dogs on the showground, they are not going to fight them. Because they are on the end of a lead, they can't flee. Is it any wonder that they become nervous and unhappy? With proper handling, i.e. rewarding the behaviour you wish your Canaan to exhibit and ignoring, insofar as it is possible, the behaviour (the nervousness) you don't want them to exhibit, your Canaan will in time become more confident. This does not mean it will ever necessarily really enjoy being in the show ring (though you do get the odd one here and there that seem to), but they will tolerate it just to please you.
I've been asked on more than one occasion if this is the case why we show our Canaans. Two reasons really: 1) the show ring is a “necessary evil” when it comes to promoting a breed. The increase of Canaan Dogs at the shows over the last couple of years, along with their ring successes have caused more people to take notice of the breed even to the point of becoming an owner. 2) I strongly believe (and I know I'm probably in the minority with this) that dog shows should be about choosing those sound, typey dogs that an informed judge feels should be used in a breeding programme. I have nothing against good showmanship….I admire it like anyone else….but it should not be the be all and end all. So with that in mind, why not show Canaans that you are proud of?
The Canaan Dog Club held it AGM on Sunday 4th March at Tysoe Village Hall. Everyone cooperated by leaving his or her dogs at home because of the hoof and mouth disease crisis. Attendance was an all-time high of 20 members. It is great to see more members taking an interest in their Club. The meeting was prefaced by a celebration of the breed's first Best In Show Dog, Anacan The Israelite At Dunline, and I think owners, Robert and Jan McLeod, were quite surprised and touched. The Bucks Fizz flowed and the McLeod's were presented with a lovely cake decorated with the Club logo and Stars of David.
One of the highlights each year is the presentation of the Club awards and certificates. As there were very few Canaans being shown 6 years ago, with basically only AVNSC classes on offer, the Club decided to institute its own awards to encourage people to show their Canaans and to show often. A points schedule was devised so that a dog received points for each placement up to fourth, both at championship shows and open shows. Open show placements are given half the points of an equivalent placement at a championship show. The dog need not beat another dog to gain its points; it just need receive a placement. Of course extra points are awarded for Group placements, and now, Best In Show. The idea, as I said, was to encourage people to get their Canaans into the show ring. The dog/bitch with the overall top points is awarded the “Shebaba Trophy”, donated by Connie and Stan Higgins and named after the first Canaan Dog registered in the UK. The dog/bitch with the second highest points is awarded the “Tiron Trophy”, donated by Mary MacPhail and named after the second Canaan to be registered in the UK. Gina Pointing, a founder member and the Club's first Secretary, donated the “Golda Trophy”, named after her lovely Queen of the Orchid at Mornavega (now diseased) for the junior dog/bitch up to 24 months achieving the most points.
This year points were submitted to Awards Chairman, Brian Barnes, for 16 Canaans. The winner of the “Shebaba Trophy” and the “Golda Trophy” was the same dog…”Abraham” (Anacan The Israelite At Dunline). The winner of the “Tiron Trophy” was “Abraham's” sire, The Lion of Judah At Anacan (“Digger”). Certificates of appreciation for helping to promote the breed were given to each Canaan that was either shown or had taken part in Discover Dogs during 2000 as we feel ALL Canaan Dogs are important.
As I write this Crufts has been postponed and then rescheduled for 25th May with Canaans being shown on Saturday the 26th. Well done to TKC for achieving what must have been a monumental task of rescheduling this show unbelievably quickly! Thanks also to the Bath Championship show committee for helping out. I personally am very found of the Bath show and hope that will also be able to be rescheduled.