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16 February 2011


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I was on the phone with the potential breeder of my next puppy (who will be Kaylee's successor, if everything works out to my plans- his dam has several siblings working as SDs, including one with tasks nearly identical to what I am looking for.) and the high pitched squealing noise she make is completely unspellable. I was sure it was going to be the Peke! (And it may be a great Peke, but I still really do think show Pekes are hideous. THANK GOD.)

It seems to me that also, Scottish Deerhound breeders are in a very good place to make sure they don't have much of a downside from the potential wave of popularity, aren't they?


Anyone who thinks they are ugly is just not someone worth bothering to think about.

Although if it helps, someone once said my flat-coat looked like a lawn dart.

I'm hoping that the size of the Deerhound will really make people think twice and not cause a surge in popularity. Let them all go buy another Scottie.

Leslie K.

As a dog breeder, do you realize how frustrating your comments are? That Deerhound was symmetry in motion - and that is a direct result of very careful breeding. That incredible movement is impossible without a breeder working towards incredible structure - which will result in a healthy, sound dog.

Are there breeds with problems? Of course, but as someone who strives to breed Labrador Retrievers who are orthopedically, genetically, behaviourally sound dogs and more importantly, someone who strives to give families a healthy family pet, your denigrating of those of us who use conformation as one of our tools to ensure our dogs are healthy specimens of the breed was disappointing.

Breeders are dog lovers too. Most of us have rescues in our homes along side our 'bred' dogs. We too read your blog. To be dismissed is disappointing.


Rawley is absolutely gorgeous. Honestly, I've never seen a dog like him before and am quite smitten. So glad his breed "represented" this go around. It woke a few people up...me included.

Patti S.

Congrats, Scottish Deerhound fans!

Well, I tried.

My flatcoat photos submitted to David Frei didn't get picked for the Westminster KC opening collage of sporting dogs doing the job for which they were bred.

OTOH, the pheasant being retrieved by the golden retriever on the intro was flushed by and retrieved by my FCR Pete the day before I made that golden photo.


So FCRs do the work, Goldens get the glory.

My photo gets national exposure, but I'm disappointed. Sigh...

David S. Greene

Way to go, Hickory, Christie, and Deerhound owners everywhere! I completely understand the bursting pride. And also, to hell with what anyone else thinks of your dog. Some people will never get it.

Janet Boss

Congratulations and dancing seems most appropriate! I thought she was an excellent choice and a really lovely girl.

Gina Spadafori

Photographers were crowding her after the win, and Hickory hid her head behind her handler.

She's not a terrier, and that's as it should be. :)

Liz Palika

Congrats! For you, Rawley, and your friends!

Ingrid King

Congratulations - to you, Rawley, and your friends!


Yup - now you know how I felt that evening in 1999 when Kirby the Papillon took it all. Despite all that other stuff, it's a heck of high when your breed takes the Garden!


What an incredible win.

I'm sure Hickory's people are all over the moon! BTW, showing really is a small world - Sally owned and bred French Bulldog for many years, with Colette Seror-Secher. Colette also owned some of the first DDBs imported Stateside.

Carol Lea Benjamin

Now everyone will know why they are called Dear Hounds. I bet Rawley is full of himself this morning!

Gina Spadafori

I'm thrilled! And it's so funny: I again picked the winner.

I wasn't watching last night -- wasn't feeling well and went to bed. But my neighbor, who has had top-winning Afghan hounds for decades -- called to ask me who I thought would win a couple minutes after BIS judging started. I was half-asleep, and muttered, "The Deerhound."

Hadn't seen any of the group winners at all ... but, there you go. I can pick 'em, even when I haven't seen 'em.

And Christie, I hope you told that woman her kids were ugly, too. I wouldn't worry about the popularity rise for the breed: They're just too darn big for most people to consider, although I sure have learned to love them since you and I became friends.

Cool picture, Patti ... although Pete would have been a more "real" selection, since I doubt that golden got much beyond the club "field fun day."

Dr. Robin

Amazing to see! I, too, never thought I'd see the day this gentle giant would be on that podium... Great breed! I thought immediately of you, Christie! :-)

Dr. Tony Johnson

Congratulations, Christie and all of the Scottish Deerhounds out there!

Perhaps we can go in the lab and work on a toy version? I mean, they think they are lapdogs already...

Glenye Oakford

Congratulations, hound and deerhound lovers! It's fun to see a hound on the podium again after Uno the beagle did it. Hooray for hounds!


I loved it. I've met several deerhounds and always been impressed by their sweet natures. I hadn't noticed just how light on their feet they are until I saw Hickory float around the ring. Good dog!

Laura B

Christie, I was laughing last night to myself as I went to bed wondering what your first words would be when you saw the win. It's a wonderful win and what a champion. Happy days.


I was rooting for the deerhound. One look at that peke should make anyone root for the deerhound.


I'm not a NYT subscriber. What kinds of comments prompted THAT response?

Gina Spadafori

Pekes are really kinda cool dogs as individuals ... but that can't-breathe-moving-footstool thing has GOT to be changed. The breed once looked more like a Tibetan spaniel, which is to say, it was once a relatively normal, healthy DOG.

Gina Spadafori

Nice piece in the NYT, with a PERFECT Quote:

"Back up, people, this is a DEERHOUND!"


Dr. Nancy Kay

Hi there,

I watched the crowning of the best in show last night and my very first thought was, "Christie must be thrilled!" I'm happy for Hickory and her humans, but I'm ecstatic for Christie!


Comment by Alison — February 16, 2011 @ 9:21 am

"Let them all go buy another Scottie."

Better yet, let's hope they all go and do their homework and buy or adopt the pet that is best suited to share their life with them and not be swayed by popular fads or dog show wins.


I found it interesting what the judge answered when asked why he choose her. (For those who watched it on TV)

He said she was the closest to old (100 or 150 years) pictures of the breed he had studied.

I wonder if that is significant to others. I'm only superficially familiar w/ the breed, so don't know if they have been less 'altered' compared to the Peke, Fox terrier, or some of the other smaller dogs (in shape, health, etc.). But I wonder if one can read into his choice a personal rejection of the extremes of the show ring since some of the other smaller dogs don't look much like they did 100 years ago?

Kim Thornton

Harper and I were jumping up and down clapping. Well, I was clapping; her tail was wagging. And I feel for you. Some stupid jerk walked up to me once and said that Savanna (a brindle Greyhound) was the ugliest dog he'd ever seen. He's lucky I didn't kick him.


And I also wonder if the Italian judge is going to be invited back. Per the NYTimes, maybe a bit more toned down than his spoken comments last night, “This one feels perfectly the standard in all the ways,” said Dondina, who is the first Italian to judge the top prize. “I am a hound person. I had Afghans, I had whippets, I had Irish wolfhounds. I never owned a deerhound. This is my dream.”

I don't follow the show ring, and am completely ignorant if they try to have a new judge for Westminster every year, but he strikes me as a little less self censoring/P.C. than we're used to in the U.S. I wonder if his preference for hounds is going to rile all the breeders up.

But I concur- I love that a beautiful, large and gentle souled dog won.

Gina Spadafori

Rachel, I missed that ... makes a great choice even better. And I tell you what: I bet that dog can hunt!

Gina Spadafori

Well, of COURSE an ITALIAN judge rocks. :)


Oh- I should have seen that coming.

I really enjoyed his frankness and seemingly easy going way.

mary francis

My first thought upon hearing and seeing this was of Christie Keith and her "dear"hounds...and what would be written today...wonderful dogs. All the office has been curious to know more about deerhounds.

Glenye Oakford

Gina wrote: Well, of COURSE an ITALIAN judge rocks. :)


Leslie K

Congratulations Christie ! Nice to see an under recognized breed win. BTW comment #9 is not me ! Changing my user name to original Leslie K.


Like most folks around here, I had one thought when I saw the news - here comes an issue of the Scottish Deerhound Connection!

My breed of choice is the ACD - and I can totally understand your mixed feelings on the subject. I would be screaming it from the rooftops and very concerned all in the same moment. Like Deerhounds, ACDs are not for everyone...

As for stranger introductions, I can only imagine the comments one would get walking around my town with a Deerhound. Two of my dogs are merle - you wouldn't believe how many people apparently have never seen such a thing.

I wouldn't worry too much about them "taking off" however... I keep seeing comments everywhere about "Hickory the Irish Wolfhound." :OP


We were doing the highland reel in the living room. Deer hounds, Wolf Hounds and Borzoi are the most elegant dogs. That fluid movement and those dark wells of soul that we call eyes. I love the deer and wolf hound fur - I love scruffy. Anyone tells me my dog is ugly, my reply would be - 'have you looked in the mirror lately?'


We get the ugly all the time...either you love our dogs, or you don't. Some are simply majestic...the deerhound is also one of those I believe. Beautiful dog in my eyes!@

Glenye Oakford

Just wanted to add that I've just found out that one of Hickory's owners apparently is a whipper-in at the Old Dominion hunt in Virginia. That's a pretty houndful life all the way around. Congrats again--and go, deerhounds!


As an owner of an Irish Wolfhound, I am thrilled for Hi_kory's win!!! (key for letter after b is not working...) She is beautiful and it is great to see her win! Yay!!!


I agree with all above who say deerhounds and wolfhounds are beautiful!!! they are! they are so beautiful and fluid when they move, and their big beautiful eyes!!! hurray for the gentle giants!

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