Approved for: All Working Breeds, All Herding Breeds, Golden Retriever, Labrador Retriever, Clumber Spaniel, Weimaraner, Afghan, Basenji, Bloodhound, Borzoi, Dachshund, Greyhound, Ibizan, Irish Wolfhound, Norwegian Elkhound, Pharaoh Hound, Rhodesian Ridgeback, Saluki, Scottish Deerhound, Whippet, Italian Greyhound, Papillon, Pug, Shar-Pei, JS, Best In Show (BIS)
This lady loves to "Rock and Roll" and is loved for her candor and outgoing honesty. She was a favorite nominee for Judging Legend 2003. Her opinions have changed very little since then and we regret that she took us so seriously on the "keep it short" admonition for this year's judges. (previous interview)
TDP: In which type of judged dog activity did you first compete? Obedience, Conformation, or Performance such as agility or field work?
TDP: About when was that and with what breed?
DC: 1962 – German Shepherd
TDP: Did you owner handle? When did you begin to use handlers?
DC: Owner/ Handler - 1997
TDP: What is/was your primary breed and how long were you involved?
DC: German Shepherds, for about 10 years
TDP: In what single area has that breed most improved?
DC: Temperament – Toplines – Showmanship
TDP: What is the biggest problem you see in the breed today?
DC: Rears still need to strengthen
TDP: Do you have a “personal” dog now and if so, what breed?
DC: No, I don’t and I hate it, but I travel too much to be fair to a dog.
TDP: Do you own other animals? If so, what?
DC: My daughter and grandson live with me with their 3 dogs and 2 cats, but I miss having and showing my own dogs.
TDP: Do you think the purebred dog is better today than it was 20 years ago? Why is that?
DC: Yes. We’ve got more knowledge about everything; genetics, medical knowledge, veterinary information.
TDP: Which do you feel is more important in a breeding program, the dog or the bitch? Why?
DC: Genetically speaking I think it’s 50/50, but the bitch teaches and socializes. She’s quite important.
TDP: When considering a breeding, which do you look at first, pedigree or physical virtues?
DC: Phenotype, then genotype.
TDP: What is the single most important physical characteristic you look for in a dog?
DC: Soundness in mind and body
TDP: In what field are/were you employed outside of dogs?
DC: I was first an entertainer, then I worked for a law firm.
TDP: About how long have you been judging?
DC: Since 1977
TDP: How many breeds or groups are you currently approved for?
DC: Working and Herding. I lack 4 breeds to complete the Hound group. I also do several Toys and several Sporting breeds.
TDP: Do you plan to apply for more breeds/groups?
DC: I want to complete the Hounds and I love Toys and Sporting; Who knows?
TDP: Which breed (or group) do you personally enjoy doing the most?
DC: I don’t know that I have a favorite breed or group. I honestly love them all; if they’re good.
TDP: What is the most annoying thing exhibitors do?
DC: Not listening or following the judge’s instructions.
TDP: What is the most important thing exhibitors should do?
DC: Be ringside on time and try to be aware of what’s happening (pattern wise)
TDP: Do you most often fly or drive to your assignments? Which do you prefer?
DC: Fly; even locally. I guess I’m lazy (and spoiled)
TDP: Have you judged in another country, if so, where and which breeds?
DC: Taiwan, New Zealand. This year I’ll go to Australia, Brazil, and Mexico.
TDP: Have you judged for another registry, if so, which one and which breeds?
DC: ASCA, for Australian Shepherds many years ago.
TDP: What is the most inconsiderate thing a kennel club can do to its judges?
DC: Put them in a hotel without a restaurant or one that doesn’t open early. Also, not being efficient in picking judges up at the airport.
TDP: What is the most appreciated thing a kennel club can do for the judges?
DC: Care about their comfort and see if they have any special dietary needs.
TDP: What do you look at first when you turn to assess a class or group?
DC: Breed type; outline.
TDP: Do you evaluate puppies as puppies or as adults when selecting winners?
DC: Everyone pays the same entry fee, so I feel all 1st place dogs are eligible for winners. I do keep in mind maturity, or a lack of it in young dogs.
TDP: What advice would you give aspiring judges?
DC: Don’t leave the show right after your breed is judged. Go observe many other breeds. Learn about other breed standards. Watch many judges to learn about ring procedure. Study good books and/or videos regarding structure.
I think that the reps (collectively) should have some input to AKC about a judge’s performance. I don’t think that the reps should have full power of removing a judge from judging, but reps are usually good dog people. There has to be some sort of input, so if not the reps; who? I wonder if this policy can be retroactive?
Dany Canino's Dog Training School
"An obedience trained dog is never a nuisance to anyone"
Click Here for Dany Canino's previous interview