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One Man’s Opinion – Politics & Copouts

photo ©Lisa Croft-Elliott

From the archives of The Canine Chronicle, The Annual, 1995-96


by Ric Chashoudian

Don’t bitch when a good one beats you. Try harder next time, or get a better dog. Do not show under judges you feel are incompetent.

I have been bothered lately by some of the things I have been hearing out of the younger generation of dog handlers and exhibitors. What I have been hearing concerns the political side of dog shows. Maybe there is so much patter about the situation in New York that it has rubbed off on all our younger people.

There is no doubt that politics does exist in every phase of life. I have always wished that I could have learned more about the political way of life. The reason I have not is that it holds no interest for me. The bottom line for me has always been good and better dogs.

I have a young girl that works for me, about twenty-four years old, her name is Sandi. She is always saying to me “I sure never want to be like you” and I say why? what is wrong with me? She says Ric, “All you ever think of is dogs”. You are either thinking about your young Wire pups coming on, your older ones that you are showing your dog show judging, or the dog statues you make. “Dogs are your whole life.” My answer is yup, you are right Sandi, my whole life is dogs. I will defend myself a little by saying that I do enjoy good sporting events, mainly football, basketball, boxing, track and field, figure skating, and baseball at playoff and world series time. I do enjoy classical music and many other kinds of music. God only knows I do enjoy food.
I enjoy N.Y.P.D. Blue on TV. I also enjoy CNN since the Gulf War, nature programs about lions and tigers and stuff. I enjoy my morning newspaper. I do have to admit that I am consumed by good show dogs. I do not enjoy hitting the bars, gambling, preachers on TV, car salesmen on TV, mowing the lawn, cleaning crates, doing dishes, hunting (I do like fishing) lying politicians on TV, and many other things. I do love this dog thing. I have ever since I went to my first dog show at the age of twelve, almost fifty-three years ago.

Dogs have been good to me. I made my living handling good dogs. I am now making my living judging dogs and making dog statues, things I love to do. When I am not judging or making statues you will find me at a dog show, showing my Wire Fox Terriers. Furthermore, I show my dogs to win, not lose, and I enjoy every minute of it.

Dogs have taken me to England, Sweden, Finland, Scotland, Spain, Wales, Belgium, Ireland, Argentina, Columbia, Japan, Mexico, Taiwan, Hong Kong, Australia, and Canada. Almost all of these trips were paid for because of dog judging. I have been invited to judge in Norway, Russia, Holland, German, South Africa, Chile, and Israel. All of this because of dogs. Now, why shouldn’t I love good dogs, dogs have been good to me.

Now when these younger people, and older ones too, start to reduce this thing to a political ballgame I get my back up. I am sure there are politics in dog shows. I know there is some questionable judging, more and more all the time. I know there are probably a few out and out crooks, but very few. We still have left, out of all this negativity, this beautiful, beautiful sport of purebred dogs that I love so much. I know that there are plenty of others like me.

This beautiful, beautiful sport of purebred dogs that I love so much. I know that there are plenty of others like me.

When I am hearing stuff like who got to who, this one or that one did me in, I wonder what he or she is getting out of putting that dog up, and that kind of talk is all I am hearing I get a little shook.

The good and successful dog people go into a ring and will say to themselves, well, I should win this, or I am in a little tough and I might not win this, or there is no way that I should win this, or this is going to be close and my dog better behave out there, and I better do my best job of handling.

One of the worst things a dog handler or exhibitor can do is to underestimate his competition. Always look very hard at the competition and evaluate the competition with an open mind so that you really know what you have to defeat. The best competitors in any sport run a little scared.

I once listened to Sandy Koufax in a radio interview at a world series baseball game. Sandy Koufax was one of the great baseball pitchers of all time. He played for the Los Angeles Dodgers. I used to be amazed at what he did with baseball. Sandy Koufax said in an interview that every time he pitched he was scared before he started a game. A little scared of getting beat is good, not bad, it makes you more alert and gets the adrenaline going, as long as it does not consume you. Many top competitors in all sports run scared before they start, some even throw up before they compete.

It is inevitable that on some days you are going to get beat when you really, really should not. This usually happens because of incompetent judging, out of stupidity, not politics.

There is no doubt that there are incompetents out there judging. That is the Kennel Clubs’ problem. Maybe they received their license through friends in high places. Maybe they received their judging job at that particular show through politicking. This is the club’s fault for hiring them. Maybe the people that hire for that show do not know the goods ones from the bad ones.

I will tell you what I think. Forget all this political stuff and put your energies into better dogs. Know how good your charge or charges are and not where they belong. If you really get it in the end you know to get mad at the incompetent judge; however, make sure that you were the absolute positive winner. Don’t bitch when a good one beats you. Try harder next time, or get a better dog. Do not show under judges you feel are incompetent.

Forget all these politicizing cop-outs and compete hard and tough. You will be much better off than thinking that you were out politicized.

This is what I have to say. Till next time.

Short URL: http://caninechronicle.com/?p=188946

Posted by on Aug 15 2020. Filed under Current Articles, Dog Show History, Featured, Remembering Our Past?. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0. Both comments and pings are currently closed.

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