Interview with Polly (Mrs. Robert) Smith – 2023 WKC Dog Show Breed Judge
What does it mean to be invited to judge at this year’s historic Westminster Kennel Club Dog Show?
Polly Smith: It is a great honor to be invited to judge at the Westminster Kennel Club Dog Show.
Can you share your thoughts on your various Breed assignments? Please be specific.
Polly Smith: My Breed Assignments: Overall, I was very pleased with both the quantity and the quality of my entry. The English Foxhound had only one entered, but she represented the breed with both true Foxhound type and movement. All of the other breeds had a good number of entries.
American Foxhounds had two outstanding bitches, both who had excellent type.
The American English Coonhounds are making excellent strides in their type and showmanship.
Both the Black and Tan Coonhounds and the Bloodhounds had good depth of quality in the entry and hard decisions to make. The Black and Tan bitch I put up was outstanding.
I was very pleased with my Bluetick Coonhounds, but they have been strong at The Garden for the past few years.
The Otterhound was a breed that I found to have exceptional depth, with the bitch I put up the best I have seen in many years. The breed is making a great comeback.
The Plott hounds were very good and is a breed I hope continues to increase at AKC shows.
The Redbone Coonhound is a breed I love and I found that they also had good type and quality in the breed.
Treeing Walker Coonhounds were outstanding, with some of the best we are going to see and with good depth in both dogs and bitches. My Breed dog is one I have judged and find outstanding, but my Select Dog, whom I had never seen, pushed him and is a good young hound.
I must praise the breeders of these hounds for the outstanding work they are doing.
Now that it’s over, what are your thoughts on the 2023 show year? Any thoughts on the year ahead?
Polly Smith: I think 2023 has been an excellent year for all hounds, and from the hounds seen in the Group at Westminster, I think the Hound Group will be the strongest at many shows.