The Collie Question for december 26, 2009

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January 2, 2009

As the first decade of the new century comes to a close help us look back. During the last 10 years (2000 - 2009), was there a dog or bitch (that you didn't breed, own or handle) that you saw in competition or in someone's kennel that reinvigorated your enthusiasm to participate or changed the way you view the breed? Describe the scene and tell us how seeing this dog or bitch changed you.

Deadline for submission -- December 31, 2009

from Barbara Saterbo, Sollis Collies

It happened a litter sooner than the year 2000, however, the day I saw a 12-week-old Tartanside Allegiance sitting at Michelle Struble's grooming area in Iowa I knew what I was going to be doing!

This was the rejuvenation of Sollis Collis. I was excited and I bred my blue merle, CH Sollis The Bee Charmer, to him when the timing was right . A sable rough bitch, Sollis In The Spotlight, "Judy," was bred to "Lee" and produced a female puppy that eventually was bred to a Lee son, Sollis Eclipse and produced CH Cheviot Sollis Center Stage. Center Stage is the dam of CCA WD, CH Cheviot Sollis Gallant Boy. That was a litter I co-bred with Nancy Parsons. Nancy had seen my little puppy bitch at a show and wanted to purchase her. We co-owned CH Cheviot Sollis Center Stage.

I purchased a puppy bitch from Tartanside, Tartanside Allusion, who, bred to Allegiance, produced "Lori," CH Sollis Valley Park Allure! And I have other Lee kids here!

from Johanna Lance, Skye Blue Collies

I had just gotten a very nice smooth to show and Debbie Holland and her gang graciously took me under their wing. When I would meet up with the Holland gang at shows, Debbie always had this older collie with her. Even as an older gentleman this dog was something special. In my eyes, he was everything a collie should be, but for me there was something more. This veteran and I became fast friends and often I could be found hanging out in his pen at specialties. I would see this wistful look in his eyes as he watched the other dogs trot off to the ring. So we hung out a lot together, back in the day -- the old veteran and the newbie. Then at one of the Michigan specialties, I was asked to help get him ready for the ring. With tears running down our faces we watched as he strutted around the ring with the vigor and showmanship of a dog half his age. That dog was "Brandon," CH Fantasy's Bronze Talisman, ROM. I am honored to be owned by some of his great gandkids who add so much joy to my life.

from Lenora Alexander, Creator Collies

As you see, I chose several, not one, please forgive.

CH Shenstone Classic Reflection ("Trey") and his kennelmate, CH Shenstone Commander N Chief ("W"), both lifted the bar very high for me, in understanding what Collie expression and head detail is at it's ultimate best. They are cousins, Trey's wonderful sire, Robbie, is W's lovely dam and "Tina's" brother. Thanks to the "Mistress" and "Master" of Shenstone for sharing them with the Collie fancy.

Also, CH Aamar's Piece of Th' Action (huge list of titles should appear here) clearly showed with his uniquely perfect head detail, the goal set by the ideal in our Standard, for me. The sides of his head were like glass.

It's with regret that I close this. Seeing the special Collies from Fantasy, Marnus, Vennessee, Tartanside (what beauties were Critic's Choice and Arabesque), Limerick, the classic "Mocha," kennels North, South, East, out West and all around the country, made an impact on me as well.

We've been so blessed.

from Barbara Corriveau, Crispin Collies

Yes, yes, I absolutely had the experience of seeing one dog that invigorated my enthusiasm. More, he changed my life.

It was in the spring of 2000 and I was at Countryview to breed my bitch, "Fleury," to CH Countryview Coloration. While I was there, Dan [Cardoza] showed me a youngster he was very pleased with from a repeat of the breeding that had produced Coloration. The young dog was jaw-droppingly spectacular. As I watched him playing in the yard that day, I did not want to leave. I could have looked at him forever. He was soon-to-be-Champion Countryview Tonite's Th Night.

Not long after that, I was to watch Collin take two Group firsts at all-breed shows near my home and then later to win Best of Variety at the National in Kentucky.

Later, breeding Fleury's daughter "Livvy" to Collin led to a cherished friendship with Livvy's co-owner Cheryl Martel, produced the beautiful CH Crispin Faithful and changed the direction of my breeding program and in other ways, my life.

from Patti Thompson, Highlander Collies

I was at a show in Norman, Oklahoma, when I saw "Lee" (CH Tartanside Allegiance, ROM) again. I had watched this boy since Michelle [Struble] first advertised him as a puppy. But when I saw him at that show in Oklahoma, which must have been in January of 2001, I KNEW that I had to use him! And I did not see him in the show ring, it was outside our hotel that Michelle and I were x-ing dogs, that I fell in love with him all over again! He reminded me of one of the dogs in his pedigree -- "Darrin!" To this day, I can see the influence that Lee has had on his get! I knew then that I had to send the daughter of the other dog that I fell in love with to be bred to him! The daughter I sent to Lee was a CH Southland's Bowen Island daughter! I saw "Bowen" at the 2000 National in Wichita, in the 9-12 class. And knew then that I had to use him! "Rumor," was first bitch bred to Bowen. As a result of that breeding, I have CH Highlander's Acceleration and another brother closing in on his championship!

from Vicky Kniss, Lonepine Collies

I absolutely, 100 percent, never, EVER, liked smooth collies -- until I saw CH Edenrock The Mask Of Society, ROM, in the ring! I believe I first saw this dog in 2005 at the Claremont specialties. His "stallion-like" attitude and stance, his beautiful eye, skull and muzzle, sold me on, what was to me, a "new" breed! When I later met his grandsire, CH Keepsake Telesis, ROM, at the home of Heather and Vicky Newcomb, I knew I needed a smooth of my own! Although I believe the best puppy can be any color or variety, it does seem "odd" that I keep turning to the smooths I see! I only regret I was so ignorant as a teenager at the 1973 National Specialty, and never gave the great "Hawk" more of my attention!

from Elaine Kennedy, Blu Moon Collies

For me, the bitch that impacted me the most was CH Blossom Hill Full Circle. I had entered Westminster in 2000 with my own bitch and we were crated right next to Mary and Paul [Wells] with Cinnamon, which gave me the opportunity to observe her all day! (Mary was very gracious also and gave me some nice advice too!) I was pretty excited about Cinnamon, myself, and would have put her up had I been judging. At the time, I believe she was ranked #3. I remember going home and telling people to watch for her, that if she was kept out, she would go to #1. Cinnamon, of course, went way beyond that in the next years, achieving some record breaking numbers! She excelled in some virtues that are hard to get and keep. I was encouraged by her to strive for those qualities in my own dogs and to also not lose sight of the whole dog as well. Cinnamon is a lovely bitch that I will remember always.

from David Clarke, Davenloch Collies

I was one that really saw immense value in the lovely CH Tartanside Allegiance, ROM. I first saw him in the flesh in Springfield in 2004 and after having admired him from afar, so to speak, up until that point, I firmly knew he would offer what I was looking for in my breeding program. Substance, a beautiful face and eye and an attitude that came shining through the entire time he was in the ring, were things I greatly admired about this dog. We then set about obtaining one of his daughters, who, in turn, propelled our breeding program ahead by leaps and bounds. We had the opportunity to see him again in Concord in 2007, as well as in Springfield in 2009, which, in turn, confirmed in my mind the longevity of his quality. We continue to look for his qualities in our puppies. He, himself, as well as his descendants, have made their mark in Collie history. We are honored to have been able to obtain a part of such history in our own pedigrees as we continue our pursuit of the perfect collie!

from Janice Holland, Tahosa Collies

I was at a local all-breed show and suprised to see Diane Steele attending. I plucked up my courage, introduced myself, and asked if I could watch her groom the next morning. She said yes!! I was standing there not doing a very good job of being quiet (questions -- I knew nothing about show grooming). Diane was very nice about explaining what she was doing! And I don't even know the name of the bitch she was grooming. She was beautiful and blue. I was in awe of her. Later in the ring as I watched her, I realized I had never seen such grace and flowing movement. She was beautiful! I now understand more about movement, and look at Collies in a whole new light. I hope to one day have a collie as lovely as her!! I will never again see Collies the same way!

Karen Soeder, Sunny Sky Collies

At the National Specialty in Rochester in 2003, I was lucky enough to have a front row seat when the specials were paraded in.  One that stopped right in front of me took my breath away--I had never seen this beautiful bitch before.  Checking in the catalog, I found her to be young CH Fantasy's Key to my Heart, (now ROM and Award of Merit winner). Her profile with beautiful stop, no depth and wonderful finish of underjaw was exquisite. I told Debbie Holland I would love to have a puppy out of her, and the next year, out of the blue, literally, Debbie called to say "Bree" had had her first litter and there might be a puppy availble for me.  This puppy, CH Fantasy's Whispering Sky, one of four to finish from that litter, became the heart of my kennel.  I am now showing her children and a granddaughter, and appreciating every minute of my good fortune in owning this special girl. Her daughter is a double-up granddaughter on Bree and truly "Once Upon a Dream."

The Collie presents an impressive, proud picture of true balance, each part being in harmonious proportion to every other part and to the whole.

– from the AKC Collie Breed Standard

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