AKC Gazette Columns

AKC Gazette - January 1996


At the start of a new year it's appropriate to think about the future of Bernese, both as a breed and individually. We must make every effort to protect the integrity of the breed and to strive diligently to secure good permanent homes for each dog. Breeders and owners must not succumb to letting their dogs become meal tickets at exotic prices, disregarding the emotional well-being of the puppy or adult dog and the future of the breed. A dog deserves security, a sense of family and permanence, as well as loving care, just as does a child. Devotion to the breed demands such a commitment.

In October I couldn't include the 1994 Top Winners announced at the Bernese Mountain Dog Club of America (BMDCA) national specialty's annual meeting and banquet. Records chair Alison Jaskiewicz compiles the data from AKC Awards. The results are published in the Yearbook that debuts at each year's national.

A BMDCA Top Conformation Dog or Bitch must be owned by a member. One point is earned for each dog defeated at each level of competition - BOS, B.B., Group and BIS. 1994 (and '93) Top Dog Ch. De-Li's Foregone Conclusion is owned by John Dreaney and Lilian Ostermiller and bred by Cheryl Grau and Ostermiller. Rusty's 1994 wins include a BIS, four Group Is, four Group IIs, nine Group IIIs and four Group IVs, plus B.B. at the national. He earned 7604 points and defeated 899 BMDs.

Top Conformation Bitch was Ch. Mardi Grau Mirage V De-Li, owned by Ann Scoblic and Grau and bred by Grau and Ostermiller. Beryl's 1994 wins include six Group IIs, six Group IIIs and five Group IV s. She earned 3073 points and defeated 501 BMDs. Of particular note and a record is that Rusty and Beryl are littermates.

A Top Obedience Winner must be owned by a member when it earns the title. In Novice A and B, Open A and Utility A the first three qualifying scores are averaged. In Open Band Utility B all qualifying scores are averaged and there must be at least three such scores.

Top Novice A was Pioneer American Revolution, C.D., owned by Kevin Curran and bred by Ruth Reynolds and Tom Hewitt. In 1994 Rev placed fourth in Novice A at an all-breed obedience trial. His average score was 191.8.

Top Novice B Was Ch. Windy Knob's Finish Touch, C.D., owned and bred by Jerry Hughes. In 1994 Pita earned a first and a second place in Novice B at all-breed trials plus HIT at the national. Her average score was 195.8.

Top Open A was Liskarn America Bound Jerry, CDX, D.D., owned by Jaskiewicz, Sara Dombroski and Deborah Mulvey and bred by Gordon Bridges. In 1994 Jay Jay earned one first, two second and two third placements in Open A at all-breed obedience trials. His average score was 194.8. Jay Jay was also the 1992 Top Novice B Obedience Dog.

Top Open B was Brighteye Chalet's Haley, CDX, owned by Kristi Osojnicki and bred by Deborah Hotze. Haley qualified seven times in Open B in 1994 with an average score of 191.6.

Top Utility A was Ch. Swiss Star's Nitro Whatagas, UDTX, owned by April Rifenburg and bred by Barbara and William Hefner. In 1994 Nitro earned two first, one second and one third placement in Utility A at all- breed obedience trials. His average score was 182.0. Nitro was also the Top Open A and Open B Obedience Dog in 1993.

There was no Top Utility B Obedience Dog as no BMD earned three or more qualifying scores in Utility B in 1994.

Hearty congratulations to our outstanding dogs, owners, handlers and trainers. They magnificently exemplify the breed's excellence in conformation and obedience.

Start planning for the 1996 national April 25 through 28 at San Francisco's Dunfey Hotel (800-238-6339), a Swiss-style chalet. We'll have conformation, obedience, futurity, puppy and veteran sweeps, tracking, draft test, agility and a parade of titleholders. For more information contact show chairs Mike and Karolyn Reed (510-932-3348). The logo, encircled by the words, "A Bridge to Friendship, BMDCA 1996 National Specialty," shows a BMD with the Golden Gate Bridge in the background. What a lovely thought, for our breed is indeed a bridge to friendship!

Welcome Swissys!

With AKC recognition of the Greater Swiss Mountain Dog, the Working Group now has two of the four Sennenhund breeds (the others are the Appenzell Cattle Dog and the Entlebuch Cattle Dog). Only the Berner has a long coat. In Switzerland the Berner is known as the Berner Sennenhund and the Swissy as the Grosser Schweizer Sennenhund. Berner fanciers have long felt a kindred spirit toward this largest of the four breeds. Some regional BMD clubs have hosted events that included all four breeds. Welcome aboard!

-]ulie Crawford, 26391 May Twilley Road, Delmar. MD 21875.