Interview with Beth Anne Johnson, Breeder of Prestige Dalmatians
Where do I live? How many years in dogs? How many years as a breeder?
Beth Anne Johnson: We live in New Jersey and have been involved in dogs for 19 years, breeding for 13.
What is your kennel name? How many dogs do you currently keep?
Beth Anne Johnson: Our kennel name is Prestige Dalmatians, Registered. We currently have five dogs running the house.
Which show dogs from the past have been my noteworthy winners?
- RBIS MBISS GCHG Prestige N’ CarriageHill’s Settin’ the World Afire
- MBISOH MBISS GCHB Prestige’s Kodak Moment
- BISS GCHS Prestige ETS in the Air Tonight BCAT
- GCHB Prestige Westview’s Storms A-Brewin
- GCHB Prestige’s Ride Along with Rising Star
Which have been my most influential sires and dams?
BISS GCH Prestige’s Another Day In Paradise BN RN NA NF CAA FCAT TKN ATT CGCA ROMX has produced 21 champions to date, including a National Specialty Best of Winners/Winners Dog, National Specialty AOM winners and Best in Specialty Show winners, as well as a Reserve Best in Show winner.
GCHB Dakota N’ Prestige’s Take Me Home CGC ROMX has been our most influential dam, currently Number Two on the Top Producing Dalmatian Dam list of all time, having 17 champions, with more pointed. She has produced National Specialty AOM winners and multiple Best in Specialty Show winners, as well as a Reserve Best in Show winner.
Can I talk a bit about my facilities? Where are my puppies whelped? How are they raised?
Beth Anne Johnson: All of our dogs are household members and live inside with us. Puppies are whelped in our home and are part of our everyday activities within the house. We raise our litters following Puppy Culture protocol with lots of socialization.
What is my “process” for selecting show puppies? Performance puppies?
Beth Anne Johnson: Puppies are evaluated on a daily basis as we interact with them to determine temperaments, as well as going over structure to see how they develop and change. We do official temperament testing at 7 weeks of age. We then determine, based on all qualities, who fits each job the best, and make those choices based on family situations and what each individual home is looking to participate in with their new partner.
At what age do I place puppies in show homes? In Performance homes?
Beth Anne Johnson: Our puppies go to their homes usually at 9 weeks; however, placement decisions are usually done between 7-8 weeks of age.
Does my breed require any special preparation for competing in Conformance or Performance Events?
Beth Anne Johnson: We are lucky to have a pretty wash-and-wear breed that doesn’t require much prep for the ring.
Do I compete in Performance Events? If not, do these competitive arenas interest me?
Beth Anne Johnson: While we focus on the Conformation ring ourselves, we do compete in some Performance Events. We enjoy Fast CAT, Agility, Rally, Lure Coursing, and Obedience, and we would like to get started in Scent Work.
In my opinion, is my breed in good condition overall? Any trends that warrant concern?
Beth Anne Johnson: Dalmatians have come a long way over the years in temperament, which was a concern many years ago. This needs to continue to stay at the forefront of breeding decisions so that we don’t go backwards.
Are there any health-related concerns within my breed? Any special nutritional needs?
Beth Anne Johnson: Copper Storage Disease is something of concern, as we currently do not have a test for the genetic marker. The Dalmatian Club of America Foundation is funding research with the hopes of identifying the gene soon so that breeders can make educated decisions with regards to this issue. As for nutritional needs, the majority of Dalmatians need to be fed a low purine diet, with the exception of LUA [low uric acid] Dalmatians.
Is my breed well suited to be a family dog? Who are the best candidates to own my breed?
Beth Anne Johnson: Dalmatians make wonderful family dogs when purchased from a preservation breeder and when the family continues to train and socialize their puppy appropriately. Dalmatians do best with active people who enjoy engaging with their dog, physically and/or mentally.
Is my breed a good choice as a Performance competitor? If so, in which events?
Beth Anne Johnson: Dalmatians are an extremely versatile breed when it comes to Performance. They can excel in just about any event in which you want to partner. Keeping training positive and fun is important with this breed.
What is the biggest misconception about my breed? What is my breed’s best-kept secret?
Beth Anne Johnson: One of the biggest misconceptions is that they are not good with children. Gosh, it’s not a secret, but most people don’t know Dalmatians come in liver. As we like to say, blame Disney for that.
For a bit of fun, what’s the most amusing thing I’ve ever experienced with a Non-Sporting Dog?
Beth Anne Johnson: At our National Specialty there was a Dal waiting for pictures at the podium. When the photographer threw the toy for the dog being photographed, the dog waiting went after to toy, broke his show collar, got loose, grabbed the toy, ran into the empty show ring and proceeded to do laps, throwing the toy, leaping, and having a grand time while the owner tried to catch him for a few minutes as the audience laughed and applauded. (I’ll admit, this is a dog I bred and co-own.)
If I could share one suggestion with judges of my breed, what would I like to say to them about my breed?
Beth Anne Johnson: While the Dalmatian is a “distinctively spotted dog,” they are a coaching breed and were bred to travel up to 25 miles a day. Soundness of movement must reflect what the breed was bred to do… “movement is steady and effortless.” This does not mean flashy and/or fast.
Are you looking for a Dalmatian puppy?
The best way to ensure a long and happy relationship with a purebred dog is to purchase one from a responsible breeder. Not sure where to begin finding a breeder? Contact the National Parent Club’s Breeder Referral person, which you can find on the AKC Breeder Referral Contacts page.
Want to help rescue and re-home a Dalmatian dog?
Did you know nearly every recognized AKC purebred has a dedicated rescue group? Find your new best friend on the AKC Rescue Network Listing.
Dalmatian Dog Breed Magazine
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Read and learn more about the smart Dalmatian dog breed with articles and information in our Dalmatian Dog Breed Magazine.
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