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Table Talk · October 16, 2019

I am on my way home from Las Vegas where I attended the Black Mountain Kennel Club shows at the Morrell Recreation center. While on the smaller side regarding entries, these shows are very pleasant. The venue is great for a dog show, and the weather is fantastic! October in Las Vegas truly is paradise. The Show Chair, Keith Pautz, works very hard with the help of only a couple of volunteers to put on these shows. As I took notice of the small number of volunteers helping at Black Mountain, it was brought to my attention that another club will take a hiatus from holding a show next year for this very reason: there just are not enough volunteers willing to help to put on the show, and those that are active are getting older and need help!

It is very easy to attend a show or cluster and criticize what could be done differently. If you have ideas, (or any spare time and energy) please join your local kennel club and share those ideas, and pitch in and help! Participation in kennel clubs and volunteers to help put on the shows is critical to help our sport thrive and stay alive. While it is a lot of work, it is truly rewarding.

Morris and Essex Kennel Club will be holding their 2020 show on the Thursday of Montgomery County weekend. Morris and Essex is held every five years, which makes it a very special event. The judging panel for the 2020 show has been announced and Desmond Murphy will be judging Best In Show. If you would like to see the entire panel, check our website at for the press release.

A very special congratulations goes out to Alex (Romero) Gerber and Dan Gerber who were wedded this past week. Officiating the ceremony was none other than Laura King. I heard the event was quite lovely and Laura did a fantastic job. May you two lovebirds have many years of love and happiness together.

I was very sorry to hear that Gretchen Schultz passed away in her sleep after a long, hard battle against cancer. Gretchen was a true warrior and she was always there for others fighting the disease, despite her own illness and discomfort. This amazing lady was an incredible handler and outstanding judge of purebred dogs. She will truly be missed by the fancy.

The fancy also mourns the loss of Carlos Rojas who passed away last week. Many remember Carlos as an amazing handler and a true mentor in his beloved breed, the Doberman Pinscher.

We extend our sincere sympathies to the family and friends of these two icons of the sport.

The Great Dane Club of America held its national specialty this past week in Virginia Beach and the venue looked perfect! There was a judge change for the intersex classes due to the fact that the original judge viewed the live stream of the Top 20. The Great Dane Club of America National Specialty is one of the most professionally run National Specialties that I have attended. I was sorry to miss it this year!

I had the opportunity to catch up with Sharon Albright from the Canine Health Foundation who reported on some of their current initiatives. As part of the AKC Canine Health Foundation Match Challenge, the AKC will match all donations from new or lapsed donors with an equal donation to the Canine Health Foundation, up to $400,000, for canine health research. 83% of this match has been achieved. This initiative will continue through the end of 2019.

There are also a couple of new recently approved research grants which include:

02669-A: Lipid Composition and Lipid Droplet Dynamics in Canine Pyometra Affected Endometria

02544: Medical Resolution of Gallbladder Mucocele Formation in Dogs

To get more details on these CHF initiatives, you can go to their website at

I am very sorry to report that Keegan McFadden passed away on Monday.  Bill and Taffe have lost a son, Connor and Taylor have lost a brother, and we all lost a wonderful, kind friend.  Rest In Peace, my friend.  Until we meet again.

Celebrating anniversaries this week are: Jody and Leonardo Garcini, Pilar Kuhn and Rod Ott, Mary King and Rafe Schneider, Kellye and Nick Riani, and Brad Jenkins and Lynn Bearden. May you all continue to thrive, and enjoy many more years together in wedded bliss.

Fanciers celebrating birthdays this week are: Justin Smithey, Maureen McCreery, Ralph Whitman, Connie Gerstner Miller, Kasey O’Brien, Kathy Musto, Gary Andersen, Jamie Hubbard, Kathy Hritzo-Heimann and Brad Jenkins.

I leave you with this thought for the week: Please don’t judge people. You don’t know what it took for someone to get out of bed, look and feel as presentable as possible, and face the day. You never truly know the struggles of others.

Be safe out there, my friends, and be thankful for your health and your canine’s health! Be kind to a newbie, and stay positive! Until next time…

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