Experienced breeders shared their knowledge at the Breed Specific Seminar in the UK
Junior Bulldog Club and South of England Bulldog Society hosted a Breed Specific Seminar in Surrey on August 26th. The seminar is designed by the Bulldog Breed Council. The seminar mainly focuses on the Breed standard and interpreting and understanding what that looks like in reality. The seminar attracts many aspiring judges, but also novice owners that want to understand the breed and its features better. Movement it’s always a big element, people understand what a ‘sound’ dog is but they normally want to also know what breed characteristics they should be looking for, says Sarah Lamont, who was organizing the seminar. - The Bulldog Jaw also normally causes much discussion from what a good jaw should look like, to how you know it’s off or wry.
The road to become a CC judge is long in the UK. The day included a morning presentation to all, then working in small groups with lots of opportunities for questions, along with numerous opportunities to 'go over a dog' and also observe some video footage on Bulldog movement. In the afternoon there is a ‘mock’ show were the attendees that are aspiring judges have to place five dogs and critique them along with a written examination. For the aspiring show judges the afternoon consisted of a written paper and a practical assessment. If the attendees successfully pass the practical assessment and the written exam then they may meet the Bulldog Breed Councils judging criteria to move ‘up’ the judging list. You join on the C list and passing this seminar would help you gain B list status, candidates are normally striving for A list status so they are approved to award CC’s but this normally takes about 15 to 17 years in total. 'Certificates of Attendance' were given to all 27 attendees.
We offered two certificates for the seminar, on the day all attendees received the ‘Certificate of Attendance’ and if the individuals passed the written exam and the practical assessment they also receive the ‘Diploma of Achievement’. Some individuals travelled a long way to attend. We also had European interest to attend the seminar which we welcomed. The youngest attendant was just thirteen years old.
As an event organiser people don’t always have the time to attend ‘educational’ seminars and sometimes only make the effort when CC’s are on offer or they can qualify for Crufts. Nowadays people are very busy and I think online seminars and webinars are the way forward, however the practical ‘hands on’ element is not possible this way, so I think we must ensure we have a good blend. Make educational seminars available to all, in all different ways, say Sara Lamont.