Scotland's Future Dog Show Judges

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Scotland’s young dog enthusiasts were put to the test last weekend at the Young Kennel Club’s ‘Introduction to Judging’ workshop which was held at Lanark Agriculture Centre.

Twelve promising young dog show judges from around Scotland took part in the workshop on Saturday 17th September, with the day designed to help attendees learn the basics of judging pedigree dogs in breed competitions.

The day consisted of a morning workshop with experts covering the basics of judging dogs at pedigree dog shows. Kennel Club Chairman, Steve Dean and Crufts Chairman, Gerald King, shared their knowledge, experience and skill with the YKC members, covering topics such as Basics of a Dog, Ring Procedure and Presence. Young Kennel Club Chairman, Valerie Foss, then took the members through an afternoon practical with a variety of different breeds and a number of top handlers who joined the afternoon session to share their experience, including:

Bert Easdon – Pekingese, French Bulldog and Boston Terrier

Stuart Plane – Scottish Terrier and Griffon Bruxellois

Moray Armstrong – Hungarian Vizsla and three puppies

John Thirwell – Welsh Springer Spaniel

Frank Whyte – Flat Coated Retriever

Judith Carruthers – Irish Water Spaniel

Fiona Slater – Tibetan Terriers

Pat Dufty and Ray Morland – Whippets

However, Yogi, the Crufts 2010 Best in Show winner was the star of the day, proving to be a huge hit amongst the members, despite his veteran status at nearly nine years old.

Chloe Green, one of the workshop attendees, from Denny, Stirling said of the day: “I found all parts of the day extremely useful.  The basics of the dog will help me in my studies of vet nursing and I thought the practical session was great for allowing young handlers to learn what to look for as a judge in different breeds.” Another attendee, Catherine Thompson from Angus added: “It was really great to have key people from the Kennel Club make the journey up to our part of the country for this workshop.”

Valerie Foss, Young Kennel Club Chairman, said: “I am delighted to be able to help the next generation of dog show judges - it is really important that we maintain a high standard, whilst at the same time encouraging people to take up judging.”