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October 1997 Newsletter Volume 2. Issue 2

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Does your independent specialty run it's own show? Would your club like to know how to have your show become bigger and better? Would your club members like to know how to have more fun and fewer headaches come show time? It can happen.

Bob Christiansen, President of MB-F, recently announced a new policy for specialty clubs doing their own shows. He stated that MB-F will offer full package services to clubs wishing to use MB-F as a provider of all materials, guidance, and planning assistance in preparation for their show.

The MB-F Package show contract offers your club the professional services of the largest superintending organization in the world. Your club will benefit from the knowledge, the facilities, the state of the art technology and over ninety years of dog show experience.

The MB-F Package show contract includes premium list composition, typesetting, printing, armbands, prize money calculation, special prize money envelopes, ribbons, catalogs,electronic show results processing (transmitted via modem to the AKC). We furnish each club with their own home page on the internet. The only thing your club needs to provide is a show site, a ring and a judge. MB-F does the rest.

The new computerized system now being released to all breed clubs is easily adaptable to specialty clubs. This system makes show planning a breeze. It even helps in providing information concerning schedules and availability... a great saver of money on useless phone calls and a show chairperson's time and effort.

Under this new system specialty clubs will be handled in a new department at MB-F supervised by Pat Shatto. Pat will handle all calls personally on a direct line extension. She will be able to answer all of your questions on special price contracts, printing, advertising, special flyers, mailings and shipment of the show package plus follow-up of on-time delivery.

The MB-F Package Show also gives your club services no other organization can. MB-F is the only superintendent with a comprehensive interactive web site. Our INFODOG.COM web site will accept your premium list copy and provide cross referencing of judging panels by breed, show and judge. INFODOG will accept entries, send e-mail confirmations and publish the results after the show. INFODOG does everything except take your dog into the ring.

MB-F is the only superintendent offering 24-hour-a-day telephone voice information. Our ROLF information system gives callers judging panel information, accepts entries and furnishes judging program information.

MB-F is the only employee-owned (ESOP Corporation) superintending organization with a dedicated staff of over 100 employees at your service. With the MB-F Package you are never more than a toll-free call away from the help you need.

This new idea of special handling for specialty shows will guarantee special attention to club needs and will prioritize their requirements. Give Pat a call, she is head of the newly established Package Show Department, her number is 800-334-0813. Let her explain what she can do for you. She can also be contacted via our e-mail address mbf@infodog.com. Pat will be pleased to answer all your questions or send you a written proposal with all the details and costs within 24 hours of your call. We are sure you will be pleased with this new service and the rapid response from Pat. She is looking forward to your call.

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A narration of the travels and travails of Guy Walton.

If it's going to happen, it will happen to Guy.

LAUNDROMAT (musings)


Don't ever underestimate senior citizens. They are people of great value. They have SILVER in their hair, GOLD and PLATINUM in their teeth, IRON wills and vast amounts of NATURAL GAS in their stomachs.


As I am writing this, I'm on my way to Tampa for five days of shows. I went to college in Tampa and lived there for five years, so I am familiar with the area. I've already commented on BERN'S STEAK HOUSE. Tampa has always been known for it's Spanish restaurants. It's premier and most well-known is COLUMBIA RESTAURANT in the Ybor city area of Tampa. Known as the "Gem of Spanish Restaurants", it claims to be the oldest and largest USA Spanish restaurant. It was established in 1905 by Casimiro Hernandez, Sr. as a corner bar and cafe serving the Cuban cigar factories, which worked hand in hand with the factories in Cuba.

Back then you could pay $18.00 in advance and eat three meals a day for a month. They started to expand in the 1930s, added the first air-conditioned room in Tampa under the direction of Casimiro Hernandez, Jr. In the 1950s his daughter, Adele (a concert pianist) took over and married Cesar Gonzmart ( a concert violinist ), who delighted customers with his `magic' violin. I met most of the family while in school. One of the nephews,

Dave, was also a classmate, which occasionally benefited some of us when we ate there. The restaurant was expanded to 11 rooms including the `Don Quixote Room', with live music and legitimate Flamenco Dancers. Food wise, everything is good and the Paella a la Valencia is outstanding.

If you prefer a smaller restaurant, go to VALENCIA GARDEN, which is just a few blocks from the University of Tampa on Kennedy Blvd. I love their food and have eaten there more than at the Columbia because I could walk there from school. I never go to Tampa without eating a meal there. I knew the owners, Manuel and Rose Berio. Their nephew, Joe, was also a classmate. Manual knew I loved (then) good cigars and always had one for me as I left.

Unfortunately, many of Tampa's old Spanish Restaurants are no longer in existence. LAS NOVADADES was in my opinion the best of all. It was Spanish Basque and had the best Spanish bean soup (2nd best Columbia). CUERVOS was a small Cuban restaurant with the best Cuban Sandwiches and 2nd best Vermicelli soup (1st Valencia Garden). They had a Chinese Cuban cook and it always amazed me to hear rapid Cubanese Spanish flowing from the mouth of an Oriental. MERCEDES CAFETERIA was the best buy in town with great home cooked type Cuban food with no frills. SPANISH PARK was also very good.

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By Dorie Crowe

In past issues of the MB-F Newsletter we have expressed the opinion that a club's profits should be reinvested in some aspect of the sport ----- whether in the community (such as the local shelter, or toward the spay/neuter clinics, educational classes, etc.) or in the larger dog world (vet school donations, dog charities, disaster relief for dogs, etc.).

We've been asked where our interests are focused. There are several areas which we quietly support such as the AKC Canine Health Foundation, The Dog Museum and Take the Lead, but our main interest is in the North Carolina State University College of Veterinary Medicine. We have been involved with the Vet School since its inception in 1985. Tom Crowe served on the first FoundationBoard and I am serving my second term on the Board of Directors of the NC Veterinary Medical Foundation.

As participants in the Sport of Dogs we are all aware of the importance of good veterinary care of our animals and the benefits derived from the research done at our veterinary colleges to aid those breeds we love. Our veterinarians are entrusted with the health and well-being of our canine companions in addition to the many other species we may own. Many of us have a relationship with our vets that is far more personal and active than we have with our own medical doctors.

Vet school students today face serious educational and career problems in their chosen field. Having completed study for a four year degree, competition to enter vet school is fierce. For instance, NC State's College of Veterinary Medicine's class of 2000 had only 77 spaces available, at the beginning of the year -1,016 applications to fill those spots (194 applications for 60 NC resident seats and 882 applications for out of state seats)! Although NCSU CVM has a relatively small class size (approximately 72), it ranks 7th nationally out of 27 veterinary schools in the number of student applications received. The admissions process is so competitive some students may apply several times before acceptance.

Once accepted, competition is in the class room as well. This year's class has an overall GPA of 3.49: a math-science GPA of 3.66 and a GPA for their last 45 hours of 3.7.

Scholarships are not a luxury - they can make the difference in a student's career. They are sorely needed and deeply appreciated. Every year we attend a student/donor luncheon where we meet that year's students who benefited from the scholarships available. Without fail the students tell us what the scholarships enabled them to do and how they were used - and those public acknowledgments have on occasion brought tears to the eyes of those attending.

Once our students graduate they face further roadblocks. Depending upon the scholarship advantages available to students during school, they can come out of school carrying an average debt load of $30,000 to $40,000 (which is more than their beginning salary). This is a very real, existing problem in attempting to begin a career as a veterinarian. In fact, the Practice Management course offered at CVM has changed drastically over the last years because most students cannot set up a practice until at least five years after graduation. At present it is almost unheard of that a graduate can start a practice from scratch unless he/she has separate, independent financing.

The American Veterinary Hospital Association says the student's debt load is a primary concern and also a major concern regarding veterinarians in rural areas. Buying into a practice can cost as much as $200,000 and most established practices cannot afford starting salaries of $30,000 to $35,000. Starting from scratch and building one's own facility can cost as much as $300,000 in building costs alone and when operating costs are added to this it becomes an impossibility to a young graduate 5 years after graduation making a salary of $45,000 to $50,000 a year.

The AVMA says the biggest dilemmas facing vet school students today are their debt load, lack of management training and mentoring. Their debt load prohibits them from even buying into a practice so they may obtain the skills in management and receive the benefits of a mentor. The next time your meeting calls for a discussion on what to do with your profits as a non-profit organization, think of investing in excellence and the future. One of the students being helped with a scholarship may have a profound effect on our canine companions, their health, or our sport in the future. Play a positive part in the future of veterinary medicine, get in touch with your veterinary college and discuss options for endowing scholarships or other areas of need. Invite them to a club meeting and have serious discussion on ways to become involved in the future. What a wonderful way for you or your club to be remembered each year... and what a wonderful return on your investment!

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By Fred Lyman

A few years ago, the American Kennel Club began approving clubs to hold two events on consecutive days. Prior to this, clubs were approved for two events per year but with some period of time between the two, generally about six months. There were a few unusual cases where some exceptions were made. For example, in the early 80's, the Greater Clarksburg West Virginia Kennel Club was granted permission to hold their two events on consecutive days until another club was formed and approved in their area for them to share a weekend. These trial situations provided some very positive reactions, thus the approval for Back-to-Back shows as we know them today.

Needless to say, there are pros as well as cons for Back-to-Back shows. Let's take a look at some of the positive reasons for a club to consider this option:

With so many clubs having a limited number of "real" workers, this scenario allows a club to hold two events while performing the tasks of producing (securing a building or grounds, tenting, hiring judges, catering, etc.) only once a year instead of twice.

The club has complete control of hiring a judge's panel. The problem of agreeing to share judges with other clubs who may not be cooperative is eliminated. Also the cost of judges can be better controlled. For example, if a club has a Saturday date the judge may fly in on Friday and return home on Saturday which would not allow for a reduced fare. Additionally, the judge may offer a better deal if he can be used for two shows.

With a Back-to-Back show setup, the exhibitors benefit as well. When they arrive they are able to setup one time for the entire weekend. Only one hotel check-in and no driving between shows. Less expense for exhibitors.

Two shows on the same site versus a weekend with two different shows on separated sites, the entry would tend to be larger as more exhibitors would be willing to participate. This would in turn increase the level of competition and make more points available toward completing the requirements for a championship.


For smaller shows, expenses of the superintendent becomes a factor as well. The production of a combined premium list, one catalog and one time ring set-up, some savings as well as others can be realized by club.

These are some of the positive aspects of the Back-to-Back shows. Now let's look at some of the negatives.

The same dogs and the same people for two days and most probably the same winners. The losers on the first day will probably evaluate their chances and buzz off to greener pastures.

One catalog instead of two and a loss of total sales on the second day. In addition the same dogs in the catalog gives the competition the opportunity to evaluate the second day's competition and pull their dogs thereby screwing up the second day's points. A different judge doesn't always mean a different outcome.

Superintending costs are not always cheaper. Even though it's one club for two days, it is still two premium lists and two catalogs even if they are combined. It's also two sets of ribbons etc. True it's only one set-up but the crew has to be paid for two days regardless. Travel to a second show six months later, however, can be saved as well as postage for a second mailing. When considering change cost is a minor factor when compared to convenience for the club with few workers and a small one day entry.

If the club charges gate admission the gate will not double. It has been proven by experience that the gate will probably be half as much each day for the spectators have a choice of days. The club then has twice the hassle for the same amount in receipts.

With only one show a year it may be hard to hold the interests of club members unless other types of local events are substituted without profit of course.

To summarize, if your club is considering Back-to- Back shows, it must be realized there are pros and cons to be considered. If your club is successful with your present set-up why change just for the sake of change. On the other hand, if you have too few workers and the club is going into the hole because of multiple expenses resulting from separate shows, maybe back-to-back is the way to go. This must be a club decision but give it the proper amount of thought before you jump. This little presentation only touches the surface you will find when all of your members list their reasons pro and con.


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By Anna Tiedemann

It seems that there is always a "special" dog. For a breeder one dog invariably makes itself special either through it's looks, it's behavior or the lines it carries. For an exhibitor it could merely be the record the dog amasses. For a handler it could be the top currently in his/her string.

In my family it was the first show dog. Obtained at a young age, she showed potential in her showmanship and her conformation. She started off in the show ring by doing more winning than we imagined a first show dog would do. She made it a hard act to follow with our other show dogs. Although she enjoyed going to the shows she also enjoyed being home with the family. She proved to us that a dog could be a show dog and a pet as well.

It was a number of years later before another special dog came along. It was a different breed and belonged to my middle child. Although an extremely difficult dog to train (she was hard headed), she finally got the hang of it and owner handled she finished her championship. Her record was not what made her special but her home life with the family. She seemed to always know when the children were due home from school and when my husband was due home from work. She waited patiently by the door. She was quick to learn tricks and the sounds in the kitchen - opening of the cookie jar and the freezer where the ice cream was kept. When my daughter moved away from home she took this special dog with her.


Another special dog belonged to my son. Here again it was a different breed. This dog bonded with my son like no other dog had. She slept with him and went wherever he went. He was the only one to ever show her and he finished her championship when he was 15. She stayed his constant companion until he left for college. She did not understand why he wasn't home. Even with him gone she was still special to me. She knew when it was time to go to bed and believed at that time, the bed was where I should be. Many nights I gave up reading and went to bed just to stop her from pacing from the den to the bedroom. After my son graduated from college he thought about taking her with him but I convinced him that with his new job and single life style he did not need the responsibility of taking care of an older dog. She remained with me until her death.

Then along came "King", another different breed but within the hound family. He entered my home with the attitude that he was there to rule. After a meaningful discussion he relinquished the ruling part back to me but retained the dignity of the "King". He came into my home at a very low time in my life. Getting him ready for the shows renewed my interest in the sport in which I participated for 27 years. The first time I saw him gait in the ring I got chill bumps on my arms. He had that "look at me" attitude. Win or lose he knew he was special to me. In the last year his gorgeous gait was stopped by arthritis. Recently he got where he could not get up anymore and I had to have him put down. I am certain there are many of you reading this that have gone through the same emotions I went through. My special dog is dead.

At home there is a son of his that has always been in his father's shadow. Now he feels he can come forth and be the special dog. He certainly seems willing to try. Can he take his father's place? I doubt it but he too can be special in his own special way.

Editors note: What a wonderful story. Only the owner of a really Special Dog will deeply relate to it. I personally have had this experience. I believed for twenty years there would never be another but a few years ago one did come along and he is really SPECIAL TOO like no other.


P.O. BOX 22107

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By Tom Crowe

There are just too many Dog Shows say magazines. Meaning they can't cover them all. There are others carrying that banner also. They are the old timers and their cohorts wanting to return to the good old days of not enough Dog Shows with small entries and only the biggies such as Westminster, the International and Santa Barbara. Too many cheap champions they say. I say rubbish!!

Let us give some facts: First there are only 648 All Breed dog clubs and 1,996 Specialty Clubs in the US according to AKC records. Of the 648 All Breed clubs most hold two shows a year. In the good old days there were fewer dog clubs and most only held one show a year. It normally took quite a long time to make a champion but I guarantee you the quality was not better than today it just took longer to finish a dog because there were fewer shows. Second, as the population has increased over the years, to more than double in those earlier days, more and more people have become interested in our sport and have wanted to take part in the fun weekends with the parties and the friendly competition (when you are losing).

In addition, registrations have doubled, tripled, and even quadrupled. As registrations have increased so has the interest in pure-bred dogs and the possibility of neighborhood bragging rights in the ownership of a CHAMPION. The TOO MANY CHAMPIONS negative individuals blowing hot air are the biggest braggarts about their champions. Maybe they are subconsciously trying to eliminate competition. I truthfully don't understand their reasoning.

I truly believe there are too few dog shows to satisfy the public demand. When the entries go down and stay down , which I personally don't think will happen, then it will be time to say "too many dog shows".

More facts, there are less than 176,000 dogs currently being actively shown. So when you get right down to discussing quality it becomes a quid pro quo issue because it's the same every week. If we want better dogs, we need better breeders and better judges. When the judges start to demand better quality the breeders may take note and try to breed better animals.

The art of dog breeding to produce better specimens is a forgotten art. It has become a back yard, make a buck deal by amateurs who have been told by other amateurs that inbreeding and linebreeding is the only way to produce show animals. The result has without doubt led to the greatest bunch of genetic cripples in our history of breeding. Your eyes would really be opened if you were to sit in on some of the discussions about genetic diseases as we hear them in the AKC Canine Health Foundation meetings. Thank heaven the vets are talking to owners when they encounter hereditary diseases in their daily practice. They take the time to explain to the owners the problems of breeding these animals and suggest they should be neutered or spayed. They explain there is no cure and if the animal is allowed to reproduce it means more of the same and even worse.

The AKC has taken a beating from television and the media for a problem they didn't invent but has been thrust upon them. Thank the Lord they have taken the right step in establishing the Foundation to fund the research necessary to fend off this mess. It now remains to be seen how many real dog aficionados there are amongst us.

I suggest that all of us interested in Show Dogs take the message to heart and make ourselves aware of the real problems in our sport and forget the politics and the desire to win regardless of the health or well being of our precious friends, our dogs.

What a sermon. I didn't start out to preach but I confess I feel much better for having written what I have felt for some time. AMEN.




(we mail to all dog clubs all-breed, specialty, and obedience ----- free of charge)

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