A Reflection on the Irish German Shepherd Dog Scene
By Martin Kelly .
Konigshof German Shepherd Dogs.
For those who would not know me, I have been involved in the German Shepherd dog breed for more years than I care to remember, 20 years plus anyway. In that time the breed in Ireland has gone through a number of changes. Today in the breed in Ireland we face many challenges, to take the development of the breed forward from the stagnation of recent years. I have seen over the past year a number of submissions from a number of Irish enthusiasts, about the problems seen in the Irish German Shepherd show scene. Indeed I have submitted an article to a well-known international Shepherd web site on the subject myself. From this highlighting of the Irish German Shepherd scene, I begged to ask myself the question: “If I was reading any of these submissions about Ireland and our show scene from another country, I would like to know what dogs they have? What dogs they have had? And is their connection to the modern German bloodlines one would see at the German Sieger show. When Bobby Duff approached me to submit an article along these lines I thought that was to way to go forward. So with those thoughts in mind I decided to put pen to paper (or keyboard to cyber paper). My object is to drain the memory banks, and outline for the home and international cyber readership the Irish German Shepherd dog scene over the last decade and a half, so that all who those who read this recanting of mine will have a better understanding of our dogs past and present, and their linkage to German bloodlines, and indeed may be able to better understand all the problems we are facing.
The Point of Reference:
I through long and hard about which would be the best point in time to start and I have decided the mid eighties is the best period to use as a starting point for the following reasons.
1. In this period we had seen a number of German Imports standing at stud in the UK, being used by Irish breeders, and making an impact on Irish dogs.
2. The breed in Ireland had a bad image thanks to irresponsible ownership, and stories of dog attacks in the national press. On the whole, the general public seemed uncertain about the breed.
3. Also at this time we saw the establishment of the Irish Breed Council; a coming together of the 3 German Shepherd dogs clubs of the day in the Republic of Ireland; namely the German Shepherd Dog Club of Ireland, the All Ireland German Shepherd Dog Club, and the National Working German Shepherd Dog Club (GSA). The aim of this departure was for the 3 clubs to come together on breed matters, to project a positive image of the German Shepherd, and to host annually a National Breed Show hosted by each club in rotation with the support of the other 2.
So I hope this sets the mood in your mind for this period in time, and now for the dogs. In this period a number of Irish kennels where to the fore. I would like to start with the Eweslan kennel. In this kennel 2 German imported females resided. Anni v. Kirschental and Winni v. d. Frichtenspitze. Unfortunately I do not have any photos of these females, but I can describe them to you. Anni v. Kirschental (a daughter of Igor v. Hylligen Born x Fenja v. Kirschental) was a correct medium size female, she was a grey or sable female, very good proportions and angles and a female with a HGH title. Winni v.d. Frichtenspitze (a daughter of Negus v. Kirschental x Lidi v.d. Fichtenspitze) was an over medium size female, slightly stretched in body proportions, very good angles, and good movement. These two females were to prove excellent producers. When Anni was mated to Eng Ch and German Import Maik v. Holtkamper See (a Yasso v. Steppenbrunnen son) she produced the Irish Champion grey male Eweslan Dax.
When Winni v.d. Fichtenspitze was also mated to Eng CH and German Import Maik v. Holtkamper See she produced the highly V rated dog Eweslan Cliff. A common principle used by the owner of the Eweslan kennel Mr Andy McCosh was to use the same sires on both his females, and this policy proved an outstanding success when both the females where mated to ENG CH and German Import. Alf v. Quengelbach (a Quai v.d. Boxhochburg son).
From the mating of Alf to Anni v. Kirschental came the top winning female Eweslan Hexe, another grey female like her mother. She was a quality female, of very good type, a lovely overline while standing and an excellent free gaiting female on the move. If my memory serves me she narrowly missed her Irish title. From the litter of Alf and Winni v.d. Frichtenspitze came the female Eweslan Iris, a female very typical of the type produced by here father Alf. Again a female of quality, of very good overall type, a female with paling pigment which was a common problem from Alf, but Iris was to prove an outstanding producer for the kennel of her owners but more about Iris later. Also from Winni mating to Eng Ch Cito v. Konigsbruch (a Nick v.d. Wienerau son) came the excellent dog Eweslan Jasso. In this same time period another kennel making a big impression on the shepherd scene was the Frabern kennel. The Frabern kennel owned by Mr & Mrs Cambell had a female that to use the statement “worth her weight in gold” would not be understating it. The female was Rothick Iollona, this bitch was a litter sister to Int Ch Rothick Invictor, and proved to be an outstanding breeding female. From her mating with the then UK top sire Ch Cito v. Koningsbruch (a Nick v.d. Wienerau son) came the Frabern “F” litter. This was a litter of exceptional quality, and perhaps I could even say dogs before their time in terms of breed type.
From this litter came 4 Irish Champions. Fritz, Fanto (Fanto owned by Cedric Blackbourne of Karenberg fame,) Fenja and Freda. An outstanding litter, and to this day I do not believe another breeder has matched 4 champions from one litter. At the first Breed Council National Show held in 1984 under the world renowned breeder and judge Walter Martin (of Wienerau fame) Fanto was V1 and Fritz was V2 in the Open male Class. In the Open female class Fenja was V4 with 3 other Irish Champion females in front of her.
Another kennel most worthy on mention here is Rudesheim. This kennel owned by Mr. Des Perkins, during this period imported from German the female Henka v. Seebachtal (a Yasso v. Steppenbrunnen daughter). Henka became an Irish Champion and won the V1 spot and best of breed at the National breed show under Walter Martin. Henka was a medium size female with excellent fore and hind angles, and an extensive ground covering gait. She was also brought to Ireland in whelp to Jupp v.d. Haller Farm, and from this litter came Irish Champion Rudesheim Bera, and in turn when Bera was mated to Eng Ch Alf v. Quengelbach, came another very good female Rudesheim Diane.
Other Irish kennels also prospered from the usage of Eng Ch Alf v. Quengelbach. The Regensberg kennel, owned by John and Marie Buckley, well known in that period, produced another Irish Champion in the form of Ir Ch Regensberg Quanda (and her brother Quantus, a V rated male). This bitch was very sire typical, again she had the problem of paling colour and through her dam was also a grand daughter of Austrian Sieger and Eng Ch Fanto v. Bayerischen Wald on her mother line. Also representative of Alf in that period was Deeankar Kondor, another dog who did a lot of winning, and a son of the Irish Champion female Deeanker Follow-On.
Also during this time Eng Ch Lauser v. Hasenborn (an Erk v. Holtkamper See son) had some very good progeny in the UK and a lot of outstanding success came from the Lindanvale and Jupaala kennels in the UK from the Lauser line. Lauser had few representatives in Ireland but of them his best daughter was to be found in the Konigshof kennels, Quinte of Bedwin at Konigshof. This female had some good results as a young female, but bred well in the limited number litters she had. Her best daughter was the multi winning female Konigshof Fenja ( a Bedwins Pilot daughter), Pilot being an Arko v. Huhnegrab son). Helmut Buss SV said of Fenja when he judged her as a minor puppy, this is a female that will go all the way to the top, but due to business commitments of mine at that time she did not have an extensive show career.
Now to come back to the female I spoke about earlier Eweslan Iris. This female became an outstanding producing female for the Pinebrook kennel owned by Matt & Mark Plunkett. From her first mating to Eng Ch Cito v. Konigsbruch, she produced an outstanding litter, and in particular the 4 females Irish Champion Astral Lass of Pinebrook, Jezeil of Pinebrook who nearly became an Irish Champion but for a few points, Winsome Lady of Pinebrook V rated and Boa of Pinebrook V rated.
From puppies you could see that these females where going to go places. Breeders who have been around a long time will know what I mean. In my opinion Astral Lass, and Jezail were the best of the 4 females. They where very even in quality, excellent type and super movers, and even today opinion would be divided on which was the better female. Let me just say that I would have gladly owned either.
Again when Eweslan Iris was mated to Frabern Lasso a grey dog (a CH Eweslan Dax x CH Fenja of Frabern son) the result was the other very good female Assi of Pinebrook. Tanya as she was known at home in the Steinenberg kennels of Bobby Duff, was another excellent female. An over medium size bitch, medium strength, a quality female of excellent overall type, excellent firmness and movement and an outstanding show record, unfortunately missing out on an Irish title.
We are now currently approaching the end of the eighties, but before I move on there is one dog I must not miss, and that is Irish Champion Canlake Igor (a Quanto v. Kopemkemp son). What a dog he was, a male of excellent quality, ideal medium size, strong, with a super overline in stance, and movement, and what movement. This dog moved like a steam train, powerful and extensive. He had an excellent show career, winning many top awards in Ireland, and BIS at the UK 2 Day National. It is a pity I do not have a photo of the dog, but he was class, but he had one flaw, which in my opinion cost him an extensive stud career. He had an unpredictable character, I recall on 2 occasions when he was disqualified when showing an unsure domineer towards the Judge. This was a pity, as in my opinion, this flaw in his character prevented him from receiving some of the countries top females at stud.
Moving on from there we now move to a dog that dominated the Irish show scene for the late eighties and early nineties. This dog will be an old favourite of many who where involved in the sport at that time, and of course that dog was none other than INT CH KEMJON LEX.
I remember this dog so well, as if it was yesterday. I remember the young raw puppy at his first show. A big puppy, loose and cumbersome, but yet you could see beyond the loose puppy to the potential that lay ahead. Lex was to become a dominant force in Ireland in the show ring being 3 times annual champion in 1987, 88, 89, and indeed set a new Irish breed record for Green Star wins at 33, breaking the long standing record set by IR CH. Regensberg Elka with 20 in the early eighties (ELKA is still the bitch record holder to my knowledge). At that time if my memory is still true to me Lex was the first representative of Tell von Grossen Sand line in Ireland through his father Tellman from Bygoly and his mother a UK Champion KEMJON BIENE, who was a daughter of the Int Ch Rothick Invictor. LEX proved to be a good producing dog with many good ones to his credit. His progeny were Green star winners, CC winners and Junior Warrant winners. I could not cover all his good ones, but just maybe a few. 2 daughters of his in particular come to mind. Bred by Lex’s owner Mr Martin Quigley, were Quinberg Sue and Quinberg Samantha. These were 2 real quality females, who did a lot of winning. I had a chance to judge both of these excellent females and on that occasion gave Quinberg Sue a major Green Star. Sue was like her father, a super mover, and she had such energy to keep going the whole time. Also for the Wenden kennel Kemjon Lex produced some very nice dogs in IR CH Maningo of Wenden and his litter sister Mannie of Wenden.
At this point in Ireland, we start to see the introduction of more modern German bloodlines into the country. Uran v. Wildsteiger Land had been double Sieger in 84 and 85 and Quando v. Arminius double Sieger in 86 and 87. It was not until the early 90s that these bloodlines started coming to Ireland and establishing themselves in Irish pedigrees. As proved in the 80s the source of stud dogs carrying these bloodlines were to be found in UK based German Imported males, or quarantine born animals. I shall start with the Uran influences first. Although their was one Uran son based in Ireland he was not widely used, and as a result most breeders took the ferry trip to the UK to either INT CH Rosehurst Chris or Eng Ch Bedwins Pirol.
Chris and Pirol were males of different types as can be seen from the photos above. Chris was a typical and substantial male, good withers, croup and an excellent mover. His list of show success are too long to list, but he won the 2 Day National in the UK, was a UK Champion and later became an Irish Champion giving him International Champion status. Several top SV judges have admitted that Chris was easily Uran’s best son.
Pirol did not commend the same ring presence as Chris, but not to detract from the dog, he was over medium size, strong, high withers, good proportions, very good front angles, a little too much for me in hind angles. But the one thing one has got to say about Pirol, he was such an outstanding moving dog and maintained his freshness and willingness right to the end of any gaiting phase. He was a top stud dog in the UK, and was used by a number of Irish breeders, but I must be honest in my assessment here. I am hard pressed to find any Pirol progeny bred in Ireland worthy of note in this article.
So the Uran son who made the most influence in this island for me is Rosehurst Chris. He was used by a number of top Irish kennels and had a lot of winners. The first of note was the Regensberg kennels. They had 2 litters from the dog, one out of the Ir Ch female Regensberg Quanda (Alf daughter) and from that mating came the young dog Regensberg Alf.
Regensberg Alf was a very harmonious dog, but very typical of his mother Quanda, and indeed a true representative of the type very recognisable of Alf v. Quengelbach. This young dog was beautiful in stance and had the construction to move with a ground covering gait, but his attitude let him down, and as a result I am convinced to this day that his lack of energy on the move is what cost him his Irish title. I was lucky to Judge the dog on a day when he proved what he could do it when he wanted. He performed excellently without putting a foot wrong, and gaited out of his skin. He deserved without question Best of Breed on that day. The next 2 Chris progeny worthy of note where both UK imports, both owned by Mr McClugan. These were Lindanvale Odessa and Lindanvale Hurricane. These 2 animals were very typical of the type known from Chris; high withers, excellent pigment, good angles, and sound movers. They both had very successful show careers, Odessa also winning best puppy at the UK 2 Day National.
The next Irish show dog from this line I have picked is Remah’s Annalise. This was another outstanding female. A very well constructed female, with very good angles, and excellent type. This female was energetic and a super moving female.
The final animal I have selected from the Chris line I have saved for last. This female was from the second litter the Regensberg kennel bred from Chris to their Austrian Sieger and Eng Ch Fanto v. Bayerischen Wald daughter Oldenburg Gucci . The female was IR CH Regensberg Zara. In my opinion the best Chris daughter in Ireland. I spent a lot of time with this female as I trained her, and was her show handler for all her career. She was owned by my friends Shay and Ger Maguire. This bitch had that something special. A judge once described her as having that star quality that makes her stand out from the rest, and that she did. She had a personality all her own, loved to be in a show ring, and had an energy that made people stop and look her. She had a fantastic show career from top winning female, double annual champion, another outstanding result was at the 2 Day UK National when she made 2nd place in a field of 37 females. On her last occasion in the ring, her retirement show, after winning the Green Star she went head to head for the best of breed under the late SV judge Bo Nyman, with her father, Rosehurst Chris. Chris won the best of breed, but what a way for her to finish her amazing show career. Losing to her father. They were great days. The German Shepherd show scene had more fun and sportsmanship then but we still had the backstabbing. I shall always have a special place in my memory of the fun and enjoyment and the trips we undertook with Zara and our friends.
Other dogs that were from the Uran line were Ir Ch Shotaans Pele, IR Ch Wenden Hannah and through Aro v. Wiesenborn (Uran v. Wildsteiger Land son) was the female ABBY, home bred by Pat & Bridget Morris, who set a record of 16 Excellent grades, an achievement that has stood the test of time.
Now I shall now move to the Quando v. Arminius line. We also saw the Quando line established itself in Ireland at the same time as the Uran line. The first representative I have chosen is the male Carnalbana Yasso, a son of Lido v. Grauen (Quando v. Arminius) and Bella v. Steigerhof (Jonny v.d. Zwillingen).
This dog was a typical Quando type. A top winning puppy and top winning adult, only just narrowly missing his Irish title by a few points. Also the Quarryvale Kennel of John Byrne at this time mated their outstanding producing female Rivka Princess of Quarryvale (Janus v. Insel Wehr) to the German import Arko v. Huhnengrab (Quando v. Arminius). This mating produced the top male Quarryvale Amigo. This young dog was a top winner in Ireland and in the UK. His litter sister won best puppy at the UK 2 Day National. Quarryvale Amigo was sold, and exhibited at the 1992 German Sieger show, making the top group in the Junghund Ruden class, and making history as the first Irish bred dog to be exhibited at the German Sieger Show. I think he had only two litters before he was sold. His best progeny was Beaurienne Anke, owned by Billy McCarthy, a top winning youngster and a multiple “V” graded female. Her mother was a Bedwins Pirol daughter. For me Quarryvale Amigo had it all; type, construction, masculinity, strength, pigmentation and excellent movement. In my opinion he is one of the best males ever to be bred in Ireland and would have had a major influence on the Breed but for his sale.
The female Rivka Princess, as I already have said, was an outstanding producer. In her litters to Alf vom Quengelbach, Jonimay Shannon, Gayvilles Kuno, Arko vom Huhnegrab and Regensberg Alf she produced outstanding quality progeny, most of whom received high placings and grades. She was certainly the top-producing female of her era.
Following over the next few years the Gayville kennels from the UK had a very successful campaign in Ireland with their litter-mates; Gayvilles Nilo (UK breed record holder) and Gayville Nathalie, both of them gaining their Irish titles, and both sired by Int Ch Rosehurst Chris. The mother of these 2 animals was the outstanding female Gayvilles Xera, a daughter of German import Cello v. Aschera.
Cello was to provide very good influence in Ireland. He was a Vopo v. Kirschental son, again a line back to Uran. The Aronbere kennel was to have success using Cello. The Cello daughter Aronbere Dixie was a top winning female and later gained her Irish title. The Willowdale kennel had results from Cello, with Willowdale Faldo who became an Irish Champion, and his sister Willowdale Feigh also becoming a Champion. The Pinebrook kennel had results from their mating with Cello from their home bred champion female Astral Lass in the shape of the top winning young dog Fabio of Pinebrook. Unfortunately this outstanding young dog, to the best of my knowledge, only produced one litter. From it came the excellent Ir. Ch. Jason of Wenden.
Ir Ch Willowdale Faldo
Eng. Ch. Gayvilles Zara (a daughtet of Import Laois van Noort).
We also saw at this time the campaign of Bedwins Siegaro in Ireland, where he gained his Irish title. He was bred by Malcolm Griffiths and owned by Harry and Rose Emmet of Emmevale. He was a son of Sieger Jeck v. Noricum. We were to see a very prolific line in Irish dogs develop from here. Bedwins Siegaro was mated to an ENG CH Laios v. Noort daughter and the result was to be Germar Baggio, bred by Henry Purtill and owned by Pat Saul. This dog was very typical of the Jeck v. Noricum type, a masculine dog of very good overall type and super pigmentation, the hindquarters where not his best point, but still the dog was well used, and when used by the Quarryvale kennel came the Irish Champion Quarryvale Nero.
Irish Champion Quarryvale Nero
Nero was an excellent male and very typical of his lineage. He gained many top awards in the show ring, and was a superb moving dog. He also had many show success in the UK and produced very well for many kennels, including his champion daughter for the Marleycrest kennel, Ir Ch Marleycrest Freda and the top winning “V” graded female Steinenberg Dina. This was certainly an era when John Byrne’s famous “Quarryvale Kennels” was at the very forefront of the breed both here and in the UK.
A reference check. We are now at a point in the mid 90s and I will bring you up to date on breed developments. The Breed Council I outlined at the beginning of the article is now collapsed. Due to the personalities and club politics the Breed Council was no longer workable and the Breed National show was also lost as a result. Also at this point the National Working German Shepherd Dog Association (GSA) discontinued their Annual Breed Show which was a big loss on the German Shepherd calendar. This then brought the annual number of breed shows down to 5 the GSDCI ran 2 open and 1 Championship show and the AIGSDA which ran 2 shows 1 open and 1 Championship. Back to the dogs. During the mid to late 90s we see the following dogs make their mark and gain their Irish Champion titles.
Irish Champion Earlville Andy
Andy was an excellent male dog with an excellent pedigree. He was bred and owned by Des Malone. His sire line was through Uran, and his paternal grandmother was a litter sister to Gayville Xera. His dam line was Quarryvale Fallon, a sister to IR CH Quarryvale Nero and daughter of Germar Baggio.
Irish Champion Caddam Bremen
Bremen, was a true medium size dog, fit, firm and an excellent mover with great enthusiasm to the end of the class. Bremen’s breeding was as follows. His sire was Amulree Tulyar, a Tony v.d.Wienerau son (Zamb v.d.Wienerau), and his dam Boysack Silkie was a Held v. Hirschel daughter (Held was a repeat mating of Tell v. Grossen Sand and Inca v. Haus Riterland that had produced Sieger Fanto).
Another bloodline which was represented then was the line of the VA Male Fanto v. Sublick. Through his quarantine born son Bygoly Basko, a UK import who stood at stud with Mr Harry Murphy of the famous kennel of Ardella, a kennel well know for its top class dogs in the 60s and 70s. The kennel of Arnsberg, owned by Mr & Mrs Miller, had success from this line in the form of their Irish Champion female Arnsberg Daggi, a female of very good type, firmness and superb movement.
Irish Champion Arnsberg Daggi
We are now fast approaching the present day dogs, and a dog that is very worthy of note is Irish Champion Willowdale Psalm.
Psalm was sired by Xandor von Haus Gero X the Female Quirli v. Friedenspark. Sam has become a very popular stud dog in Ireland in recent years. He has produced well for some kennels, in particular the Quarryvale kennel, which produced 2 Irish Champions from their litter by Psalm, namely Quarryvale Athlete a top puppy, winning the best puppy dog award at the UK national 2 Day show. He went on to gain his Irish title and is currently the top winning male. His litter sister Quarryvale Astra, again a top winning puppy, and also went on to become an Irish Champion, and would currently be the top winning female. Both of these dogs have been campaigned with great success in the UK. The Psalm daughter, Marleycrest Jessie, is another top-class female, very typical of the type produced by Psalm; strong, typical, excellent construction and powerful movement. Jessie has been one of the most consistent winners in the Breed ring for the last two years. She was bred by Hugh Rooney and co-owned with Pat Saul.
Also we see at this years GSA Irish Sieger Show 2003 another daughter of Psalm, Hildesheim Sandra become Irish Siegerin. The mother of Hildesheim Sandra, Hildesheim Chara is also proving to be a top producing female for the Hildesheim kennel of Brian and Valerie O’Connor. It is worth noting here that Chara is a daughter of Irish Champion Willowdale Faldo, who was himself a Cello v. Aschera son. I feel I must make the point here that all these outstanding breed specimens are as much if not more so attributed to the outstanding brood bitches at work in the breeding program’s for their respective kennels. Again Hildesheim Chara is also the mother of the top winning young dog of 2003 the exciting grey dog Hildesheim DKNY. Chara was a very beautiful female; correct medium size, beautifully constructed and an outstanding mover. She had an excellent show career.
IR. CH. Quarryvale Astra
A number of kennels making advances with current German bloodlines is very encouraging to see. Kennels like Rudesheim, a long established Irish kennel, which has been spoken off earlier. This kennel was the first Irish kennel to breed a litter to Sieger Ursus v. Batu and have had a number of V females from this litter, and have bred a subsequent litter to Ursus. They also have used the young German dog Natz v.d. Herdersfarm. Also they currently have standing at stud the German Import Luigi vom Polarkreis, a Zycco v. Arminius son. Other kennels have bred females to German based sires such as the Reenroe kennel owned by Joan Berry. She has bred her female Rudesheim Quella (Ursus v. Batu daughter) to VA Neptun von Bad-Boll and the highly rated German grey dog Champ v. Dakota The Agacamp kennel also have standing at stud their German imported male Nelson de Brunskittal, a Ghandhi v. Arlett son. The Tendyk kennel of Derek Stapelton, have their own home bred young dog Angus von Tendyk, one of the top Minor Puppy Males of this year (a VA Enzo v. Buchorn son x their Ir Ch female Quarryvale Astra). I also understand that Astra has recently produced a litter to German Import Zenno v. Huhnengrab. Also the Konigshof kennel has the first representative of the Esko v. Danischen Hof bloodline in the form of their UK import Bygoly Veni. The Marleycrest kennel of Hugh Rooney, also have currently standing at stud the dog Lido de Franqueries (Eros v.d. Luisenstrasse x Hiony De La Vallee Juphine). Lido has been a good producer with one daughter a UK Champion Darrenway Kim, and also the Irish bred female Starrenberg Pandy also a top female from 2003, formerly owned by Bobby Duff, and now owned by her breeder Pat Saul.
Before I summarise there is just one other point I would like to attempt to cover the problems we have in Ireland in our breed. We are no different to any other country. We have the same problems with croups, angulations, size, character and pigmentation; the standard points that breeders try to improve on when breeding dogs. One of our big problems in the lack of quality in depth in our classes and falling entries at shows. To give you a simple statistic to help explain our plight is this. In 2002 1171 German Shepherd puppies where registered by the IKC, in 2003 1485 German shepherd puppies where registered by the IKC, and this year at a Championship show with a SV Judge officiating 7 German Shepherds where presented for assessment. You can see the problem. We are an island nation with five breed clubs. 2 in the North of Ireland and 3 in the South. Is there a need for so many clubs??? Do we have a proper breed survey system, designed to suit our needs?? The answer is no, and in my opinion we never had a proper cast iron breed survey system.
The Breed Survey was never properly structured or supported by all the Clubs and no wonder it collapsed, therefore there has not been a Breed Survey carried out in Ireland in years. We have no structured format for assessing breeding stock apart from a breed show. No guidelines placed on litter registration by the IKC. But to be fair in this case many years ago the German Shepherd clubs tried to meet with the IKC to discuss a Breed Charter. I was part of one delegation, and again that was the problem. All the German Shepherd clubs had different agendas and that failed. I outlined in a submission which can be read on the Videx GSD web site titled Cross Roads, that in order to have any hope of getting the IKC (Irish Kennel Club) to meet and discuss issues about the German Shepherd in Ireland, a united front must be seen, and all the breed clubs must be singing from the same hymn sheet. I could go on, and on, but the time for talking needs to stop, and doing to start. An Irish breed development vision needs to be formulated, and implemented, to suit Ireland, and our needs, and problems, and not the total implementation of the WUSV system in this country as in my opinion it will not work here.
Notwithstanding what I have spoken about in the foregoing paragraphs, I still believe there is hope for optimism at present. Breeders such as Des Perkins (Rudesheim), Jack and Jean Duff (Willowdale), Pat Saul (Starrenburg), Pat McGuire (Ardmac) and Anthony and Gay Dunne (Agacamp) have all made a great step forward by importing quality males and females from Europe. With this influx of new blood there is now a unique opportunity for the Breed to regain some of the glory of past years.
I found it amazing when I read the article from Australia, by Ros Scott, on the “Articles Page” regarding the Breed Improvement Schemes they use. What an eye-opener. We are light years behind. At present in submissions on the “Forum” it should be obvious the difficulties people are having trying to get the IKC to move us forward in this direction.
The implementation of the “Minimum Standards” document by the WUSV is a great step forward and must be endorsed by all the Breed Clubs, if we are to make any progress.
Anyhow, to conclude, if people have read this far down, my objective was to inform people about the Irish German Shepherd Dog Scene. Irish dogs past, present and for the future. I feel confident that that has been achieved.
Also to the owners and breeders of dogs I have left out or forgotten my apologies. If anyone out there has any questions or comments please feel free to contact me through the German Shepherd Forum. Best wishes to all in the German Shepherd community wherever you are, and good luck to the people involved in the web-site. This was definitely needed.
We apologise for the standard of some of the photographs, but there was little we could do, some of them are 20 years old. If anyone out there has better quality pictures of the dogs we will gladly replace them in the article