Attaining a Major - German Shepherd Dog Forums
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post #1 of 48 (permalink) Old 03-11-2013, 04:50 AM Thread Starter
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Attaining a Major

I am going to try to have some intelligent discourse on this subject, but if people get mean or defensive will moderators please pull the plug.

It seems to me that the lack of entries in ASL is making it really difficult to create champions these days on a reasonable budget. Furthermore, it would also seem to reason that if the numbers for a Major is as little as 15 or less in many regions, then in many classes only one or two dogs are competing. This would not reflect any competition in the class ring more times than not. Certainly, this is not economics alone, because I see SV like conformation shows that are often overflowing with applicants,(though I feel my following premise applies to them also).
So my thought process is....why doesn't the leadership of the GSDCA through their Judges program reflect a more moderate dog being able to finish. I think many people who enjoy conformation do not participate because they know their dog does not have the extreme traits to be capable of winning. Why WASTE money?.....yet we have many hundreds of people who compete in SV trials that have been bitten by conformation bug, and have AKC registered dogs. If a fraction of these people competed then the begging for numbers to make a Major wouldn't be necessary. It stands to reason that the leadership of the GSDCA would recognize this and by opening up the winning criteria to a more moderate dog, they could strengthen the numbers, the competition, the quality, and ultimately the breed.
This makes sense to me, so what is the reason why this approach couldn't be taken to make Majors more attainable?......Just curious.
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post #2 of 48 (permalink) Old 03-11-2013, 08:56 AM
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Now Cliff, that would also mean opening up the genetic pool and Lord knows we don't need that ...
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post #3 of 48 (permalink) Old 03-11-2013, 09:15 AM
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Maybe there is the element of prestige? I've heard AKC folks criticize SV and UKC because of how "easy" it is to get a top rating or to finish a CH (UKC GRCH, not so much). You get a rating in an SV show regardless of the dog's age or training, and you can earn a UKC CH in a weekend if you have a good dog and it's a large cluster (like AKC, you also need enough competition for wins to count).
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post #4 of 48 (permalink) Old 03-11-2013, 11:54 AM
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Since, I started this by griping about the numbers, I'll jump in.


Quote:
Originally Posted by cliffson1 View Post
It seems to me that the lack of entries in ASL is making it really difficult to create champions these days on a reasonable budget.
Actually entries are down in general. Not just in GSDs. We were just discussing last week that it used to cost $10 to enter a dog in a class, and I just paid $28 an entry last week. If you are only showing one dog, then fine. But get multiple dogs in the ring, combined with hotel and travel expenses, it gets pricey. Oh, and if you have a handler, then the price goes way UP.

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Originally Posted by cliffson1 View Post
Furthermore, it would also seem to reason that if the numbers for a Major is as little as 15 or less in many regions, then in many classes only one or two dogs are competing. This would not reflect any competition in the class ring more times than not.
Well actually, no.
If there are 14 bitches at a show, it really doesn't make much difference in how they are distributed in the classes. The winners of each class then compete against each other for the points. Kind of like playoffs in basketball, lol. BTW, there are 3 pt majors, 4 pt majors, and 5 point majors. My girl Carly finished with two 3 pt majors and a 4 pt major. It's not impossible.

I have a breeder friend that shows in Bred By Exhibitor. Oftentimes she is the only one entered in her class. She gets the blue in her class, and goes on to compete in Winners. Her male is NICE, and I've seen him get three Best of Breeds over champions, with him starting out as the only dog in Bred By. Just because he had no/little competition in his class, doesn't mean he had no competition to get the points, or BOB.

Does this make any sense? I think I'm rambling now...


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Originally Posted by cliffson1 View Post
why doesn't the leadership of the GSDCA through their Judges program reflect a more moderate dog being able to finish. I think many people who enjoy conformation do not participate because they know their dog does not have the extreme traits to be capable of winning.
It doesn't take "extreme traits" to win in the ring. Believe me there are all kinds of judges out there. They put emphasis on different traits. Some like a moderate dog. Some love side gait. Some have to have a dog that is clean coming and going. And yes some do like an extreme dog. Some judges put dogs up that I haven't a clue what they were going for. That breeder friend that wins Best of Breed from the Bred By class? Very moderate dog.

This is why it takes 2 majors under 2 different judges, and then the rest of your points from at least one other judge.

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CARLY ......... Ch. Lauremi's No Reservations (AKC GCh pointed, HIC)
SCARLET ..... Lauremi's Almost Wasn't (AKC pointed)
and absent friends... SAGE ~ Lauremi's Whim Z v Jakmar ~ AKC major ptd, HIC ~ 2010-2015
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post #5 of 48 (permalink) Old 03-11-2013, 12:19 PM
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^^What Diane said.

I don't have what I feel are extreme dogs, and they really do alright for themselves. Are they specialty types? In general, no. Wesson may do well in both rings, but I do not have a preference for specialties to begin with.

I just dropped over $200 in entry fees for the Raleigh cluster next week. That is freaking PAINFUL! Not to mention the cost of travel and lodging (Thank GOODNESS I have friends to split the cost of the room, or I'd be screwed).

These are the counts for Raleigh:
Thursday: 4-16(4-2)
Friday: 9-21(3-2)
Saturday: 11-18(3-3)
Sunday: 14-22(3-2)

There is a major on both sides 3 out of 4 days, however, on Friday it only makes a major by two dogs...if they don't show up, have to hope the judge will cross over the points from the bitch side.

It's a four point major all week for the bitches....where are all the boys? It's quite a pain when you have to hope the judge will cross over the points if your boy needs a major because not enough are entered.

This has been a VERY common trend, lately. Tons of bitches.....no dogs.

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post #6 of 48 (permalink) Old 03-11-2013, 12:30 PM
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Yes, tons of bitches and no dogs. I see it over and over. However our particular GSD club members suddenly are cropping up with males to show. Thank goodness, since I'll be having a male myself soon! (we'll be begging each other to enter).

My next show is in 11 days. I'm going alone with just Sage, and meeting my handler there. So I have a 3 day show, with one dog, with no one to share hotel expenses (ouch) and 3 days of entry and handler fees. I estimate it's going to be at least a $600 weekend. That really stings when you come home with NO points, lol! Add in the fact that it's not even a major... sigh

Well, good luck on the Raleigh show, Jackie! Fingers crossed that your majors hold up and you get some points.

~ Diane ~

CARLY ......... Ch. Lauremi's No Reservations (AKC GCh pointed, HIC)
SCARLET ..... Lauremi's Almost Wasn't (AKC pointed)
and absent friends... SAGE ~ Lauremi's Whim Z v Jakmar ~ AKC major ptd, HIC ~ 2010-2015
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post #7 of 48 (permalink) Old 03-11-2013, 01:16 PM
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I my area we see some WGSL/ASL crosses being shown and finished. And my ASL dogs are not extreme.

But...I have attended the judges' seminar put on by the GSDCA at a National and another breeder and I argued with the mentor of our group about the (lack of) virtues of an extreme rear. We could change her mind, but we tried.
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post #8 of 48 (permalink) Old 03-11-2013, 01:39 PM
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We have a breeder in this area that will occasionally show their WGSLs in AKC. They showed 2 weeks ago in Texas at the show Sage was in. They didn't do anything, but then neither did Sage.

When Carly got her first 2 points, their WGSL male went Winners Dog and Best of Winners. Carly went Winners Bitch and their WGSL bitch went Reserve. Just sayin'...

(and Carly's litter sister went BOB)

~ Diane ~

CARLY ......... Ch. Lauremi's No Reservations (AKC GCh pointed, HIC)
SCARLET ..... Lauremi's Almost Wasn't (AKC pointed)
and absent friends... SAGE ~ Lauremi's Whim Z v Jakmar ~ AKC major ptd, HIC ~ 2010-2015

Last edited by dogfaeries; 03-11-2013 at 01:41 PM.
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post #9 of 48 (permalink) Old 03-11-2013, 01:39 PM
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The last AKC event I did was a puppy match. The judges were people who were nearly finished with whatever program the AKC uses for new judges. The lady that judged our puppies had no idea that there were different types of GSD. She said ours (I went with a few others and we all had WGSL) looked different and she wasn't sure how to judge them. That did not inspire any confidence in me to continue with AKC conformation (though I should say the match before that, the man who judged gave me a good critique for Nikon and was very thorough, even with puppies).
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post #10 of 48 (permalink) Old 03-11-2013, 01:51 PM
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Clubs put on shows and choose judges by how that judge judges. A good judge will give no points if there is not a dog worthy of points in the dogs he is judging. The judges that are giving points to dogs that have more angulation believe that the more angulated dog is correct. Forcing such a judge to give points to a dog that they believe is incorrect would corrupt.

GSDCA is only really the parent club, and they have a list of judges, and those judges are all a little different in their interpretation of the standard. The judges chosen are the judges the people who put on the shows want judging. And all of that is basically specialty shows. In all-breed shows more moderate dogs do better. And there are sieger shows in places other than Germany. If you have a German dog, show them where the German dogs are.

Bringing German dogs, show line or working line to a specialty show is just setting yourself up to be angry and your dog to lose. Why do that?

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