“Disqualifications, Dismissals and Other Faults”

 

Here is the last segment of the Standard (printed in bold) with my comments printed next in regular print.

005

The foregoing description is that of the ideal Dachshund. Any deviation from the above described dog must be penalized to the extent of the deviation keeping in mind the importance of the contribution of the various features toward the basic original purpose of the breed.

There are many things that keep a dog from looking like an ideal Dachshund, but very few are intended for dismissal and disqualification as DCA wishes AKC Judges to do right now as the Club hopes to keep the Breed looking and acting as it always did in the recent past.

002

The Standard is pretty clear that poor temperaments are not to be used in the ring, but those cases are not always decided the correct way by Judges and sometimes poor temperaments go forward and win in the classes, despite the dog not acting great in the Ring. What we don’t realize is that very few Dachshund Judges even take the time to assess the temperament of the dogs and, if the dog acts bad and doesn’t return to the Judge, the Judges more or less just think the whole situation is “cute” anyway. No matter what we say about the dog’s attitude, it will probably be more or less ignored by the Judge in the Show Ring and so, in my opinion, should be more a matter of all of us being aware of these problems and the whole fancy working to be rid of these temperaments as soon as possible. None of us want these poor temperaments in our breeding program and yet most breeders make excuses for the way the dog acts instead of just getting rid of that temperament as soon as we can. Remember, it is up to US, as breeders and exhibitors, to keep that temperament out of the Show Ring.

009

As for color, DCA has sent letters to Judges saying that off-colors should be excused/DQed from the ring for not following the Standard’s description on the white shown by the dogs and many people feel that these off-colored dogs with large patches of white are certainly not typical of modern Dachshund Breed type. While I can agree with the DCA Club’s findings on that color, since the white color has never been really seen during my time in dogs except for  a few double dapples and a few off-colored dogs that we all see now and then,  I can see no reason for getting rid of the colors that are not listed in the Standard. In my mind, could I excuse any Dachshund with a bad front that is also not listed as  positive in the Standard? Can we take out all the ones with poor toplines and what about the ones who have no upper arm length? I don’t believe we can.

003

Again, in my opinion, the off-color portion of the Standard should be dealt with as any other situation is and that is to consider the white a fault and deal with it accordingly. As a Judge myself, I want to use what is shown to me and decide how far off the Standard marks they are. I personally would not want big splashes of white in the ring as this color is not, nor never has been, in the Standard (except briefly, rather recently) , but there is no way to kick them out of the Ring just because of that white since that color is not a DQ nor is it an instance for the Judge to make them disappear from the rings. If the Standard changes and patches of white do become a DQ, then I will, of course, excuse them as they appear in my ring, but certainly having Judges excuse them without a DQ or other means of getting rid of the white is just not going to work in the Ring today. The white, to me, would be a fault, but just one more of the faults that we see every day in the Show Ring and would only win if it were clearly superior in every way to the normal entrants that are seen in the Ring and be a great example, moving and standing, and showing off the great front and rear it has, but, usually, those great qualities are not on display, either, in the off-color dog.

DISQUALIFICATION: Knuckling over of  front legs.

The only disqualification is the knuckling over of the front legs meaning that the front leg area above the foot is unable to support the whole body weight of the puppy, due to a lack of integrity in the muscle, tendon and ligaments. It is my opinion this condition is not genetic – it is due to the dog being unable to support its weight due to  dietary imbalances and missing micro-minerals. I just found it strange that this one was added as a DQ since, as far as I am concerned, it was just an off-putting misalignment that normally gets straightened out eventually. I have said that I have never seen any examples being shown and so several people said they have seen lots of them in the Ring and , of course, NONE of the Judges excused them. So, in other words, is this just another way the Judges fail us? Why would they do that? These just do not make sense and just mean Judges become even more lame in the eyes of yet more exhibitors (whether or not any dog WAS knuckling over). Again, if you do see knuckling over, please DQ it although I, personally, have never seen it in any dogs I have judged.

012

Certainly, it would be great to have other people, such as Judges, sorting our bad qualities out and leaving us with nothing but great Dachshunds in the Ring, but, unfortunately, it does not always happen that way. We can appreciate any help we get from Judges, but the majority of these things are what we should be depending on Dachshund exhibitors to take care of.  Personally, we cannot just keep getting upset at Judges for not doing these things and getting rid of misbehaving Dachshunds or ones with too much white. Those are things that Judges should be aware of, but, in all honesty, probably do not care that much about while they are judging and devote little time for trying to notice these smaller things in the Breed. These are important to us as Dachshund exhibitors and breeders, but are pretty low for most people to worry about.

Remember, the DCA Standard expects us to not use or place dogs that are far from what the Standard calls for as correct. One thing I have learned is that we all have to take credit for these poorly tempered, poorly colored and poorly constructed Dachshunds that are being shown in the Ring and that we all have to understand that we, exhibitors and breeders, are responsible for these poor choices being shown. The Standard is here on these pages and I have explained what I look for when I read the Standard and why I look for the things I talked about. Anyone can get their own reading on the Standard and interpret it any way you like, but you should be able to defend your decisions and why you think the way you do. As for AKC Judges, many do not ever find the bad temperaments, the poor colors and the unsoundness that so many of us see, but we should praise the ones who do and, perhaps, remind the ones who are not so quick to find these faults to maybe look a little closer and why it matters to the honest exhibitors and breeders who are really trying to better the Breed.

002

Our Dachshunds are out there in the Ring for all to see what we show and breed and we hope that all of us, breeders and exhibitors, look back and see what we are still needing to make a long, low and level Dachshund. We can only do better by trying to make the Dachshund an nicer mover and one who shows what he has to offer the Breed. We always want the Dachshund to excel and get better in all the important parts stressed in the Dachshund Standard, especially in the front, the neckset and the forechest which are truly the hallmarks of a great Dachshund.

 

Dan Harrison

April 2014