Interview with Rebecca Ingersoll, Breeder of Twisted Acres Kennel
Please tell us a little bit about yourself. Where do you live? What is your breed? What is your kennel name? Do you have a website? How long have you been in dogs? How long have you been breeding dogs? Who are some of your best-known dogs?
Rebecca Ingersoll: Hi. My name is Rebecca Ingersoll. I am from Benson, Arizona, and I breed Mudi and Border Collies. My kennel name is Twisted Acres. My website is www.twistedacresranch.com. I have had dogs my entire life; family dogs growing up and then my own as an adult. I have been in Border Collies for over 25 years and Mudi for over 10 years. My best-known dog is also my first bred-by: GCHG Twisted Acres Ride My SeeSaw CM8. He is the No. 1 Mudi. He holds a lot of firsts in the breed in Conformation.
As a Breeder, can you share your thoughts on your breed today? Is breed type strong? Are there things to be concerned about? Are there any health-related issues? Have you worked with breeders overseas? Are pet homes typically available for your breed?
Rebecca Ingersoll: The Mudi has exploded in popularity, especially since achieving full recognition. As a “new” breed to AKC, breed type is still not consistent. My concerns are that we have a height DQ and not enough judges wicket. Our breed is also not a breed that is to be judged on expression, but they get put up over better examples of the breed that are sound. There are some health issues, but I think, now that more health testing is being done and kept track of, it will seem like there are more health issues popping up in the breed when, in reality, it is just due to more dogs being tested and better recordkeeping.
Yes, I do work with several kennels overseas and have been fortunate to have been able to add several amazing examples of the breed to my program. Some of my best homes are pet homes! Even a pet home deserves a well-bred dog. In a lot of instances, I think pet homes do better because they are not putting pressure on the dog to perform; they are just letting them be a puppy and grow up!
As an Exhibitor, can you comment on recent entries in your breed? Are majors available in your area? Does your breed often participate in Companion and Performance events? How can newcomers in your breed be encouraged to join the sport of dogs?
Rebecca Ingersoll: Our entries as a general rule have been growing, but it does depend on location. In my area, yes, there are majors, but I also do a lot of traveling to all areas of the country to show. We have Mudi participating in pretty much anything possible. They are a very versatile breed. Hopefully newcomers will reach out to their breeder for help. I know I am always willing to help anyone.
What are the biggest challenges facing the dog show community as a whole and how can we address them? And finally, what are some of the positive changes you’ve seen in your breed and in the dog show community as a whole over the past decade?
Rebecca Ingersoll: I would like to see the sport of Conformation become more like what its original purpose was—to find the best example of the breed. Can this specimen of the breed do what it was intended for? Is it sound? Does it fit the Breed Standard, etc.? Withhold if necessary. Wicket and weigh if a DQ. This is not a participation sport and not all dogs are deserving of that win!
Everything about a Mudi should be moderate, so if something sticks out it is probably incorrect. A Mudi is not flashy and should not be “asking for the win.” I am glad to see the increased interest in the breed and a general improvement in the breed. I am in favor of the recent changes. It shows AKC cares. Hopefully, with the increase of numbers in our breed, the quality of those showing will grow too. I have met some of my best friends through Conformation.