Form Follows Function | Happy 30th Anniversary to SHOWSIGHT!

Happy 30th Anniversary to SHOWSIGHT

Happy 30th anniversary to SHOWSIGHT Magazine and to all who have made—and make—it such an outstanding source of information on the purebred dog!

To celebrate the magazine’s 30th year in publication, my topic this month is going to be: “How has SHOWSIGHT led the conversation about purebred dogs?”

When I began my lifetime journey in the purebred dog fancy, the most difficult part of putting it all together was my search for information. I had no idea where I could find the answers to the questions (Oh, so many questions!) that were constantly popping up in my head. I was fortunate to have purchased a well-bred dog, but it was from a breeder who was just starting to become involved in showing dogs. Therefore, she couldn’t really serve as much of a mentor to me. I eventually discovered a few books that I bought and read over and over again: This is the German Shepherd by Captain William Goldbecker and Ernest H. Hart, first published in 1966; and McDowell Lyon’s The Dog in Action: A Study of Anatomy and Locomotion as Applying to All Breeds, first published in 1950. These were two great sources of information, but what did they really mean? (I had not yet learned to speak the language of the “show dog fancier.”) These two books became the foundation of my large library on canine anatomy and conformation, breeding, showing, history, and literally all things “dog.”

Along the way, I discovered several magazines dedicated to the dog fancy, both current and out of publication, which I read cover to cover and then added to my growing collection.

Within the next ten years, I was very fortunate to find mentors who took pity on this youngster from South Carolina. They were Pat Parsons and Scootie Sherlock (Caralon German Shepherd and Pembroke Welsh Corgi fame) who then introduced me to Dr. Charles Kruger, DVM (Schaferhaus). They took me under their wings and began my journey in purebred dogs in earnest. I would sit beside them at the German Shepherd Dog Club of American national specialty shows, soaking up their discussions/evaluations of each dog in the ring. I took copious notes in the catalog as well. Along the way, I discovered several magazines dedicated to the dog fancy, both current and out of publication, which I read cover to cover and then added to my growing collection.

Form Follows Function | Happy 30th Anniversary to SHOWSIGHT!

SHOWSIGHT became my favorite “go-to” magazine when it first began publication in 1992. It won me over due to its educational content as well as the beautiful depictions of so many lovely dogs in every breed that AKC has approved—and quite a few others as well. As SHOWSIGHT grew, it encompassed all of the fancy and spoke to breeders, owner handlers, professional handlers, judges, and juniors. Presented in each issue is something of importance for the readers, whether they be rank novices or seasoned breeders and competitors. Some of SHOWSIGHT’s topics include: the AKC, Breed Judging, Canine Health, Clubs, Dog Shows, Dog Sports, Handlers, Owner Handlers, and Puppies.

Form Follows Function | Happy 30th Anniversary to SHOWSIGHT!

Some of my favorites have included titles such as “What Do You Think? and “The Breeders’ Perspective,” which asked the same list of questions to well-known breeders in a specific breed for their viewpoints. “Survey Says” is another that usually asks only one question, with answers published from breeders of many different breeds.

I am most happy when I can help others to understand the workings of the inner canine. What good has all of my years of study done if I don’t pass that knowledge on to others?

In each issue, pages are dedicated to individual breeds, offering different perspectives that may be authored by one individual or with input from several breeders within a breed.

Form Follows Function | Happy 30th Anniversary to SHOWSIGHT!

When studying a new breed, I am always open to hear what the breeders say are the hallmarks of their breed, and these columns have really helped me to learn about a wide variety of breeds. As mentioned previously, this information may be from one person or from a panel of several breeders responding to questions related to their specific breed.

SHOWSIGHT launched its forward-thinking website in 2018 and formed a branding agency, Showsight Creative, to help dog-related small businesses grow online and into the future. The website is outstanding and covers all of the topics listed above.

What is even more exciting is that all that has been done in the past has been leading up to today—and what is happening now and in the near future. The introduction of “Ring-Ready, Home of the Owner Handler,” a magazine dedicated to the owner handler, made its debut within SHOWSIGHT magazine’s issue of October, 2021. SHOWSIGHT is also launching an educational Breed Magazine for every AKC breed. EVERY breed!

I am most happy when I can help others to understand the workings of the inner canine. What good has all of my years of study done if I don’t pass that knowledge on to others? This also seems to be the SHOWSIGHT motto, and I am proud to be a small part of the team. Happy 30th Anniversary to SHOWSIGHT! and here’s to SHOWSIGHT’s continued success in the next 30 years!

If you have any questions or comments, please contact me via:

Form Follows Function | Happy 30th Anniversary to SHOWSIGHT!

  • My involvement with the world of showing dogs began in 1969 with the purchase of my first show dog, a German Shepherd Dog. In the mid-seventies I began breeding and showing Pembroke Welsh Corgis under the Jimanie prefix and have finished a championship on a Pembroke Welsh Corgi on the average of one a year for the last 45+ years - almost all were breeder/owner handled to their titles. In 2010, I formed a loose partnership with two long-time friends, Denise Scott and Linda Stoddard, and we now breed and show under the Trifecta prefix. I am a breeder/owner/handler and still breed and show. Over the years I have owned and shown dogs mostly from the Herding and Sporting Groups plus a few toy breeds. I started out showing dogs from the Herding Group, but as a hunter, I always had a “bird dog” and thus also showed Brittanys, Pointers, Golden Retrievers and Irish Setters over the years. I have finished dogs in several other breeds from the Sporting and Toy groups. I started my judging career in 1988 with AKC approval to judge German Shepherds, Cardigan and Pembroke Welsh Corgis. I judge the Herding, Sporting and Toy groups and several of the Non-Sporting breeds, as well. I have been fortunate enough to have judged dogs all over the US and Canada and also in Finland, Norway, Sweden, Jamaica, New Zealand, Australia, Ireland, China, the Philippines, Mexico and the United Kingdom. In 2011, I was accorded the supreme honor of being asked to judge the Welsh Corgi League show in the UK and in previous years both the Cardigan and Pembroke Nationals in the US. I have also had the honor of having judged many National and Regional Specialties for breeds I did not breed, own or show from the sporting, herding and toy groups throughout the years, an assignment I always enjoy! Some of the highlights of my judging career have been judging at Westminster Kennel Club in 2006, doing the Herding Group at the Rose City Classic in Portland which was shown on Animal Planet and the national specialties for Clumber Spaniels, Field Spaniels, Australian Shepherds, Miniature American Shepherd, Bouviers (Canada) and the Top Twenty competition for the Golden Retriever Club of America as well as both of the Corgi national specialties in the US and Pembrokes in Canada and the Welsh Corgi League show mentioned above. I make my living as an artist, mostly through the design of counted cross-stitch and needlepoint but also through paintings and sculpture as well as jewelry. I have recently begun authoring and producing DVDs on the canine, mostly dealing with structure and movement. Last, but certainly not least, I’ve been married to Jim Hedgepath since 1972 and am the mother of two and the grandmother of four. Thank you for the honor of being invited to judge your dogs.

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