Interview with Charles Olvis, Working Group AKC Judge
Where do I live? How many years in dogs? How many years as an AKC judge?
I live in Lake Wales, Florida. I have been in dogs since the early 1970s, judging for 33 years.
What is my original breed? What is/was my kennel name?
My original breed is the Old English Sheepdog; kennel name is Sunup.
Have I judged any Working Breed/Group Specialties?
Yes, too many through the years to list each one.
Are there specific qualities I admire most in the Working Breeds?
Yes, retaining the ability to do the jobs they are supposed to do.
How important are the breed hallmarks in the Working Breeds? Can I offer a few examples?
Breed hallmarks are very important. Each breed has its own characteristics that set it apart.
Can I speak to the general presentation of the Working Breeds in my ring today?
In most cases, the breeds presented today are in good condition and are presented as the breed requires.
Do I have any thoughts/opinions on dividing the Working Group in two?
Sometimes I think it may be good, but then there are smaller shows where there wouldn’t be enough dogs in each Group. So, no easy answer.
What advice would I offer newer judges of the Working Breeds?
Take into consideration: “Does the dog have the required breed characteristics? Does it have breed type? Does it appear to be able to do the job for which it is required? Form follows function.
Which Working Breed provide the greatest challenge to judges? To exhibitors?
Working Breed exhibits that are not trained to stand for examination, to see the bite or to gait properly, are a challenge to the judge. You are judging breeds where the bite must be examined and the dogs must move properly to be evaluated.
If I could share my life with only one Working Breed, which would it be and why?
For me, that would be the Newfoundland. I’ve been around them before and lived with them, and I love the breed.
If I could share my life with only one dog, which dog would it be and why?
Today, this would be the Border Terrier; great temperament, easy to live with, a loving companion.
Just for laughs, do I have a funny story that I can share about my experiences judging the Working Group?
In my ring, a Mastiff once decided to lie down for a rest and would not get up. Everyone was laughing except for the handler who was embarrassed that she could not get the dog to budge. My response was for her to just relax… it’s only a dog show. Eventually, the dog decided to get up and continued his journey around the ring. You have to remember, dogs will be dogs.