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Table Talk · November 24, 2021

Table Talk · November 24, 2021


I’m back from the Coyote Cluster in Tucson, Arizona just in time for Thanksgiving! Tucson Kennel Club celebrated their 150th Dog Show this year which, in my opinion, is very impressive. Club members did a terrific job celebrating this momentous occasion with exhibitors. While wind can be a challenge in Tucson this time of year, we were lucky to have great weather and only a little bit of wind.

There was a handling clinic on Friday evening after Best In Show that was attended by 39 people!  A huge thanks to Larry Cornelius, Erin Karst, Mallory Seifert, Chris Keith, Brianne Rock and Curtiss Smith for helping with the clinic after a very long day of showing dogs! It is becoming increasingly difficult to find help for these clinics so handlers, who are at shows where clinics are held should try to lend a hand wherever possible.

I have had several conversations recently with exhibitors who were upset by judges calling the wicket. It might surprise everyone that I have an opinion here!!! Judges have the right to measure the height of any dog in a breed that has a height disqualification. If an exhibitor is unsure of the height of a dog, it might be a good idea to measure that dog prior to entering or showing it. It is a good idea to measure the dog from the highest point of the withers. There have been a few exhibitors recently who have been measured out who previously measured in and were unhappy with the result. This can happen if a dog is tense, or if the dog was previously measured by someone that did not use as wicket properly. You can avoid disappointment and frustration by coming prepared by knowing your breed standard and how it applies to the dog you are showing. Keep in mind there are guidelines for how judges should wicket, and if you follow those guidelines you should be good to go!

The entries have closed for the 2021 AKC National Championship and lead-up shows, and we are in for a fantastic week! Entries for the lead-up shows range from 4,052 to 4,617 and the entries for the AKC National Championship total 8,540 with a conformation entry of 5,051. The National Owner Handled Series drew an entry of 816, the Bred-By Exhibitor competition drew an entry of 1,096, and Friday’s Puppy Competition drew an entry of 1,395. AKC.TV will be covering events on Saturday and Sunday and will broadcast the groups on Saturday and Sunday night.

Table Talk Live! will be covering happenings outside the rings, and we look forward to having some fun! If you have any stories that you would like to share with the fancy, please reach out to me at Keep your eye open for us at the Convention Center and join in the fun!!

Congratulations to Vicki Seiler-Cushman on the success of her recently opened Donut Shop!  After 4 short months in business, Glazed has sold 200,000 donuts!

I am sorry to report the passing of Bill Ellis’ father. Bill has been involved with the fancy for many years as an exhibitor, and currently works for the American Kennel Club. If you watch any AKC TV show coverage, you will enjoy Bill’s commentary, most often in conjunction with Gina DiNardo.

The fancy is mourning the loss of AKC Judge Judi Daniels. Judi was an AKC Board Member from 1991-1994 and served as Executive Vice President from 1994-1996. Our thoughts are with Judi’s family at this difficult time.

Fanciers celebrating birthdays this week are Ray Harrington, Courtney Bastian, Elizabeth Salewsky, Tami Luddeke, Gregg Bohlke, Curtiss Smith, and Jennifer Costantinidis.

For this week’s thought, I’d like to share something about “The Privilege” we all enjoy:

Every time I pick up the lead it is my privilege. It is my privilege that this wonderful creature has agreed to be my partner!

Regardless of the outcome of the interaction, my dog tries hard to understand a complex, confusing, and sometimes unnatural set of instructions. It is my privilege that my dog is willing to try.

Regardless of the outcome, any errors rest on my shoulders. I wasn’t able to make my requests clear for my partner. It is my privilege that my partner is willing to forgive.

Regardless of the outcome of subjective judging, the dog I took into the ring is the same dog I have the privilege of taking home.

It is my privilege from the beginning to the end, and always!!

I hope everyone has a fantastic Thanksgiving filled with lots of great food, love, and good times.  Be safe, stay well, and I look forward to seeing you all soon!  Until next time…


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  • November 2021