door Karl DonvilBRUSSELS DOG SHOW(s) 2017
Another double show, the 3rd after Liege and Mechelen, both CACIB titles. The Saturday Show is called the Brussels Trophy, the Sunday edition, the traditional Brussels Dog Show where the CAC counted double and it was also a Crufts Qualifier Show . On Sunday the winner of both is chosen and becomes the title of Supreme Winner. But was it a miscalculation? There were a few big shows the week prior to Brussels, like Helsinki in Finland that could affect the Russian and Scandinavian entries and the Amsterdam winner certainly would affect the Dutch entries. And the very same weekend as Brussels there were the shows of Gorinchem in the Netherlands, Stockholm in Sweden, Vilnius in Lithuania and Verona in Italy. The all more or less could have an effect on the entries. But was that enough to state that for these reasons there was a significant drop of entries? The foreign shows are always scheduled around this period. The most significant change however, was the double CACIB show. Last year is no reference as it was the European Championship show, but the previous show in 2015, the Brussels Dog Show had an entry of 3925. This year the Saturday show had 1994 entries and the Sunday show 2203 dogs. In total (4197) it is more, but the competition was a lot smaller and there was not the expected effect of a double show. Only about 200 more dogs for the Sunday show can probably be explained by the double counting CAC, that brings you faster to the title of Belgian Champion, and the Crufts qualifier. But a week prior the Amsterdam Winner show had exactly the same, a double counting CAC and Crufts Qualifier. Suppose you use to attend shows in Belgium andthe Netherlands on a regular basis, you need to make choices on what show to attends unless you plan to attend all the 4 shows! Let's not forget that a double show makes it a very expensive weekend if you want to attend both shows and there is only a small chance to win on both shows as the judges change anyway. Entering your first dog is 55 EURO (price of Brussels). If you want to try to qualify for Crufts, you have to see where you have the biggest chance, but if you start with Amsterdam, there is no way to still give it another try in Brussels if you didn't make it in Amsterdam. So if that is your goal you have a better look at the judges list to see where you might have a better chance to win. December is also a very expensive month for the family budget too. What can you expect? Most people have a certain budget for the dog shows. More and more shows become double shows, but most people's budget stays the same. In my opinion the result is that the cake is not bigger, it is only split up in smaller parts.
I had a closer look on a few breeds. On Saturday there were 46 Golden Retrievers entered, and 39 on Sunday. Only 28 were entered on both days, mainly foreign dogs. In 2015, when it was a single CACIB show, 89 were entered! 48 French Bulldogs were entered on Saturday and 59 on Sunday, 40 of them were entered on both shows. In 2015 there were 68 in total (as far as I can retrieve from my notes). All dachshund varieties together, there were 64 on Saturday and 61 on Sunday, 40 of them both days. But in 2015 there were 129 entered for one judge and some more to another judge (I don't have that number anymore). What can we learn from this? A double show makes hardly a difference and is only better for foreign entries who stay over for the weekend in hotels or campings. Those we enter for both shows are mostly foreigners and probably hope to complete their Championship. The classes are hardly filled up, only one or two dogs each time, where is the fun? Hardly any babies and very few puppies, no competition in the Champions Class and even Open Class. There have been more dogs that were alone in their class than anything else. What is a first class in Open worth then when there are no competitors to beat. Please reconsider double shows! Until last year most of the Belgian shows were still having plenty of entries and shows did very well compared to other countries. But it seems to change now. We must realize that instead of a big show we end up with two small shows! What's the added value!
A few days ago I met a regular exhibitors in a shop nearby. She used to show her big dogs on a regular basis, but she does no longer show them now. On the question why, she told me that it is no longer possible bringing 3 big dogs and benches to a show being all alone. Before she could bring in one, put him in a cage and go look for the others. That's probably one of the reasons why we don't see those big numbers of groups any longer. Simply, there are no cages for rent any longer and with only two hands it is almost impossible to enter more than one dog unless small sized breeds. It's time to reconsider renting cages. People don't mind to pay for them and it will raise the number of entries.
As usual the main ring was very nice and even improved. Above the podium was a large screen while everything was filmed by a professional film crew and streamed on the net. There was a strict time-schedule for the finals alike in the Green Dog Show of Ciney. During the day the visitors were entertained in the main ring with demonstrations of several disciplines. There was the possibility to buy dogs items on 20 commercial boots and in front of the boot of the new sponsor "Pro-Plan" was a small village with breed stands and a puppy school. The catalog contained an agenda of all the shows in Belgium in 2018 including website reference. That should not only figure on the catalog of this show, but should be published obligatory on all the catalogs of every Belgian Show. Unfortunately again there is no page with statistics to be found. I have no idea where the exhibitors came from, how many countries were represented, etc. Hello Onlinedogshows ! It's only a matter of making a filter for the database!
It was only when I was making my analysis of the show that I realized how many judges were invited! 53 were invited, 22 of them from Belgium, 22 different nationalities and 40 of them to judge on both days! Clear, the committee had expected a lot more entries! The average dogs/judging-day score is hardly 45! Luxembourg and certain other shows reach numbers as high as 70 and more! That means that if you invite a certain judge , pay for his plane, hotel and meals you have a completely different budget to work with. Of course, as the Brussels Dog Show is in the interest of Belgian Cynology in general, it is the duty of the Belgian Kennel Club to promote the Belgian judges as much as possible and give them opportunities to judge at the one and only National Show.
On Saturday 4 judges have more than 65 entries. One of them, Mr.Jacques Arnold from Belgium judged one day only. He had the highest score with 85 entries mainly thanks to the 51 Chinese Cresteds. Mr. Theo Leenen, president of the Belgian Kennel Club, had 83 entries and 129 in total, a 2nd overall best score that he shared with Mrs.Daniela Risdan from Slovenia who judged 59 French Bulldogs on Sunday. She's also one of the 4 judges on Sunday that had over 65 entries. M.Willi Güllix from Denmark had 71 on Saturday and the best weekend score with 130 entries in total. On Sunday Slovakian judge Viera Staviarska had 87 entries, 30 of them Dalmatians. Mrs.L.Lazic from Serbia had 70 dogs on Sunday, all belonging to Group I, the shepherd breeds. And Slovenian judge Mr.Branislav Rajic had a nice number of 82 entries belong to the Pinscher and Schnauzer varieties. Mrs.Van Raamsdonk had a good entry in Bulldogs with 40 specimen, which brings us to the good scoring breeds. Very unusual are the Kooikerhondjes that were entered on both days, 15 on Saturday and 16 on Sunday. And it's some time ago since there were that many Afgan hounds entered, 29 fro Karin Hedberg from Sweden on Saturday and 36 for Mr Harry Vella from Malta. Mrs.Myriam Vermeire was granted the honor to chose the BIS on the Saturday show. "Red Hot Chili Pepper of The Living Spots" was chosen as Best of Breed from a competition of 25, judged by Mrs.De Ridder-Onghena from Belgium, that was also the Group judge. This German bitch was entered in Open Class, is 2 years old and lives in Germany with Uta Stolper and Laetitia Stark. Her second place went to the Barzoi "Chyerdak kashmir" who is 6 years old, was entered in Champion Class along with 10 others for Mr.Louis Dehaes and is owned by Soete Deborah from Belgium. 11 Were entered for. Group 10 was judged by Mr.Rita Reyniers. But her hearth was stolen by the Yorkshire Terrier "Hunderwood Jet Set" from Mr.Eric Bernard from France. Only 4 were entered for Mr.Van Brempt, Jet Set in Open Class. He is 3 years old and co-owned byMrs. Nanta Tansacha. On Sunday Mr.Jean François Vanaken was judge for Best In Show. On 3 he placed the 16 months old Spanish Waterdog "Zorrazo Do I Smell Victory". Pia Meriläinen from Finland entered him in Intermediate Class, judged by Mr.Luis Jorge Ferreira Peixoto from Portugal. 8 were entered. Mr.Peixoto was also the Group judge. Second place went to the Newfoundlander "New Angel's Pacific Black Pearl". Only 13 in total were entered. Pacific Black Pearl was entered in Junior Class, not even 14 months old, Mr.Vanaken being the judge. Michèle Ritter from France is his owner. Mr.Bispo from Portugal was the group judge. Best in Show went to the 22 month old Poodle "Yamit Muskat Korea Min Su" coming from Russia, entered by Polina Kurbatskaya to be judged by Mrs.Dagmar Klein from Romania. Only 6 were entered. The group was judged by Mr.Zlojutro from Hungary. The Supreme Junior Winner and Supreme Winner were both judged by Mr. Theo Leenen, president of the Belgian Kennel Club. The Newfoundlander "New Angel's Pacific Black Pearl was his Supreme Junior winner, the Yorkshire "Hunderwood Jet Set" his Supreme Champion.
Gent will have a double CACIB show, as well as Liège and Mechelen. We will see what evolution will bring these double shows, but I vote for a good big weekend show, with rings plenty of competition, adding prestige to a show and honoring all the Best of Breeds who won from many other good specimen and where a 2nd and 3rd place are still valued high. Next edition is scheduled a week earlier with no concurrence of Amsterdam this time, 8 and 9 December 2018.