Welcome New Members – Oct 2020

  • Jacob and Breann Plagens sponsored by Lauren Trathen
  • Morgan and Terry Rodriguez sponsored by Robyn Salley
  • Kelly David sponsored by Syndi Keats (Sanda Kat)
  • John Schmoll sponsored by Jon Hicks
  • Karen Lyons sponsored by Jasmine Sanders
  • Jon Bourque sponsored by Brianna Bodwell, Karla Davis, Robyn Salley, and Claire Roybal
  • Caitlin Bailey sponsored by Lauren Trathen

ABC Membership Renewal

RENEWAL TIME!

Membership dues must be paid by the end of the year! You can easily renew online through the website by logging in here, then navigating to “My Account” under the Members section.

Then select “Pay Membership Dues” at the bottom of the page.

You can also use the opportunity to update your address before the annual election.

Sports et Loisirs: Agilite

beauceronsportcartoonart2

While we certainly recognize that there are many other venues for competitive agility (UKC, CKC, NADAC) creating a cheat sheet for all of them was too expansive of a project.

 
  FEO (For Exhibition Only) Can use toy in the ring and touch obstacles, including resetting jump bars Exhibitors can change a FAST or T2B to FEO entry
Test Levels ACT I (Agility Course Test), also virtual until 12/31/20 2 Qs: score 85 pts or more on 10 obstacles, no weave poles ACT 1 can be skipped
ACT II (Agility Course Test), also virtual until 12/31/20 2Qs: score 85 pts or more on 10 obstacles, 6 weave poles  
     
Trial Levels Novice (A/B) 14-16 obstacles 6 weave poles
Open 16-18 obstacles 9-12 weave poles
Excellent 18-20 obstacles 9-12 weave poles
Masters 18-20 obstacles  
Classes Standard
Contact obstacles (yellow sections), pause table
 
Jumpers with Weaves (JWW)
No contact obstacles or pause table
 
Preferred
Reduced jump height (good for young dogs and seniors) and longer course time
 
Fifteen and Send Time (FAST)
15 pt valued obstacles/combos and a send bonus for a distance element
 
Time 2 Beat (T2B)
Not separated by levels but dogs of same height compete and course time is set by fastest dog
No dog walk, chute, pause table or broad jumps. Up to 2 tries to finish an obstacle
Premier
19-21 Obstacles generally same course as Master with emphasis on handling complicated sequences
No pause table
       
Obstacles A-Frame Contact on descent Required
Dog Walk Contact of descent Required
Seesaw or Teeter Contact on ascent and descent Required
Pause Table 5 second stop with all 4 paws on table Required
Open Tunnel   Required (Max 3)
Weave Poles 3 attempts allowed Required
Bar Jumps Jump over top bar without displacing or knocking it  
Panel Jump    
  Double Bar Jump    
  Triple Bar Jump    
  Broad Jump    
  Jump Wings    
  Ascending Double Bar Jump    
  Wall Jump    
  Tire Jump Cannot break tire segments apart or knock the frame over  
Qualifying 3 qualifying scores at each level under 2 judges    
Divisions All Beaucerons would be entered in the 24 in. division (22 in. or over at the withers)    
Faults Refusal/Run Out, Wrong Course, Pause Table Fault, Failure to Perform, Elimination, Excusal    
Titles
(Level) (Class) + Preferred if applicable
N (Novice) A (Agility) or J (Jumpers) and P (Preferred, if applicable). For example, NA = novice agility; NAJ novice jumpers with weaves; NAP = novice agility preferred
 
Notes A-Frame, Dog Walk, and Seesaw will never be set in sequence, or the first or last obstacles on a course    
  • Arc’s Bete Du Bayou NA OAJ OF RATN CGC (Denise DiLosa)
  • GCH CH Harbin L’Amour De Ma Vie AXP MJP CA DS CGC (Paige Johnson and Cindy Hartwell)
  • CH Image Du Murier De Sordeille NA NAJ OA OAJ NF (Elaine Giannelli)
  • Cupidon De Trappist VCD1 OA OAJ (Michele Godemann)
  • Disney Du Bois Du Nord MX MXB MXJ MJB XF T2B CA
  • Emperor Woodrow Mes Yeux Vigilants AX MXJ XF (Sharon Schultz)
  • Endless Waltz De Nanrox RN NAP NJP CGC TKI (Jill Ford)
  • Enori Du Chateau Rocher-Nori MX MXJ MJB (Daria Tsoupikova-Preuss)
  • Fabuleux Viper Du Chateau Rocher CD RE OA NAJ CGCA (Pamela Woodes)
  • GCH CH Fredericka Du Chateau Rocher CD BN RA OA NAJ OJP CGCA (Deborah Baker and Karla Davis)
  • GCH CH Isis Isis Baby Du Chateau Rocher CDX BN RAE MX MXB MXJ MJB XF CA CGCA (Janice Bourell-Casey)
  • GCH CH Loki Du Chateau Rocher BN HSAs NA CGCA CGCU (Cynthia Burgess and Amelia Foreman)
  • Hogan De La Noe D’Orient HSAs AX AXJ CGC (Christine Emery)
  • Isla Mystique Du Chateau Rocher BN RN FDC NAJ NJP CAA BCAT ACT1 CGCA TKN (Kathy Kimmeth)
  • MACH3 PACH2 Demi Du Bois Du Nord CD BN RE MXB2 MJS2 MXP5 MXPS MJP5 MJPS PAX2 MFB TQX T2B CA CGC (Maureen McClatchy)
  • PACH Maya Du Coeur De Soleil BN RN MXP3 MXPB MJP3 MJPB PAX MFP CAA BCAT DJ AJ TKI (Maureen McClatchy and Elaine Giannelli)
  • Rebelle Avec Une Cause Du Chateau Rocher RA AX MXJ CA CGC TKI (Cara Dixon)
  • Tequila De L’ Etoile Du Nord OA AXJ NJP (Marion Karhatsu)

UM Needs Your Blood (Samples)!

Adrienne Scott

Misha, assisted by Pride and Kenai, is here to collection your samples for DCM research (Pride and Misha owned by Sara Reid, Kenai owned by Courtney Goddard)

Our Beauceron community has the opportunity to develop a DNA swab kit for the disease Dilated Cardiomyopathy, DCM. Once developed, this kit would be available worldwide. The Animal Molecular Genetics Laboratory at the University of Missouri – College of Veterinary Medicine needs blood samples and pedigrees from unaffected AND affected dogs.

The Submission Protocol and Sample Forms are available through the links (and you will need to include your dog’s pedigree). This process is completely confidential and no information is shared with the ABC or breed community. If you would like to read more about this study see Dr. Johnson’s 2015 article in The Beauceron Bulletin (page 4).



For questions, contact Adrienne Scott at scottabs16@hotmail.com.

Complex Art: A Visual Study in Conformation

Jasmine Sanders

For the first piece of my project comparing real examples to the wording of the breed standard, I wanted to look at the whole picture, particularly the Beauceron’s proportions. Referring to the AKC Breed Standard & the ABC Illustrated Breed Standard, I pulled out pieces that I found most relevant when evaluating the ideal Beauceron as a whole. We will take a look at two of the four Beaucerons I choose for this project and examine what the standard says in relation to the two examples.


Substance

…a well balanced, solid dog of good height and well muscled without heaviness or coarseness. The whole conformation gives the impression of depth and solidity without bulkiness...Dogs are characteristically larger throughout with a larger frame and heavier bone than bitches. Bitches are distinctly feminine, but without weakness in substance or structure.

http://beauce.org/2006/08/breed-standard-u-s/
Nectar dit Noir de la Negresse (left) & Elka des Habits de Feu (right)

When I compare these two examples, I notice a few places where each excels and areas where they falter. My impression of Nectar is that he is a bit slight in bone. Although he is “well muscled without heaviness or coarseness,” to me, he appears to have a slightly feminine body. My preference for a dog is to be more on the substantial side of the standard. In my opinion, his head is of heavier bone than the rest of his body; however, his proportions are technically correct. This leads me to wonder if my perception of the ideal male is misguided. After all, the Beauceron should be “medium in all its proportions.”

On the flip side, the bitch, Elka des Habits de Feu, seems slightly on the heavier side for a female. I am not necessarily referring to weight, but rather to her substance. As is allowed for in the standard, her slightly longer body helps offset the slight coarseness, in my opinion. Though her “distinctly feminine” head is not perfectly harmonious with her bulkier frame.

Harmonious Proportion

The Beauceron is medium in all its proportions, harmoniously built with none of its regions exaggerated in shortness or length. The length of body, measured from the point of the shoulder to the point of the buttock, is slightly greater than the height at the withers. Bitches can be slightly longer than dogs. Correct proportion is of primary importance, as long as size is within the standard’s range.

http://beauce.org/2006/08/breed-standard-u-s/
Proportions of male and female: length of body (yellow line) is slightly longer than the height at withers (orange line). The length of the heads (blue line) is approximately 40 percent of the height (orange line) as shown.

To illustrate proportions as discussed in the standard, I have presented relative lines to mark the lengths and height that determine correct proportions. Length of the body is “measured from the point of the shoulder to the point of the buttock” and is “slightly greater” than height at the withers. You can see in the figure that both examples are slightly longer than they are tall.

…the head must be in proportion with the body, measured from the tip of the nose to the occiput it is about 40 percent of the height at the withers….

http://beauce.org/2006/08/breed-standard-u-s/

The length of the head must “be in proportion with the body,” and the value is “measured from the tip of the nose to the occiput…it is about 40 percent of the height at the withers.” Presented underneath each dog is the stack of the body length, height, and head length lines to show each dog’s proportions. Obviously, these measurements are not exact, but I thought it would be a way to mentally compare them, keep away from specific numeric values, and focus on overall balance. Balance is particularly important in a working dog, and the standard is quite particular about what is considered the ideal.


It is important to remember that no dog or bitch is perfect. Despite these minor deviations from my interpretation of the breed standard, both of these dogs are exceptional representations of the breed regarding substance. Neither the slight lack of substance in the dog nor the slight heaviness in the bitch leads me to the impression of an overly heavy or bulky individual. Each example appears balanced and well within the standard as it is written. When judging, I would personally determine that faults should be minimal regarding proportion and substance.

Although the overall impression of balance is of the utmost importance, the Beauceron’s physical harmony greatly relies on the specifics of the individual parts. As I continue in this personal exercise, I will focus my attention on several different aspects. But for me personally, the next most important feature of the Beauceron is its head and expression. In my opinion, both play such a large role in the breed’s overall presence and thus the headpiece will be the focus of my next article.

President’s Page – October 2020

Carol Cossey

As we enter the fall and heading towards the end of 2020, our thoughts are with everyone in the paths of recent hurricanes and wildfires, and that EVERYONE is safe and healthy.


The Board recently approved the Member of the Year Award. We thought this would be a great way of thanking a member who has gone out of their way to assist the Club. We have many members with diverse talents that are volunteering their time and skills to keep the club, and its many functions, running. The ABC has several awards for our dogs, so we felt it was time to honor members for their service.

Any ABC member in good standing can be nominated and the award will be given annually at the National Specialty. A trophy will be purchased and each recipients name added, but it will remain with the Club. The awardee will get a keepsake as a reminder of the ABC’s gratitude for their efforts. We are hoping this will help boost the morale of the members into a positive position.

The ABC also has the opportunity to give the AKC Outstanding Sportsmanship Award. Honoring individuals who deserve special recognition for making a difference in the sport of purebred dogs, each club is provided an AKC Medallion annually. Outstanding sportsmanship is defined someone who embodies the AKC Code of Sportsmanship, and are an active and valued member of an AKC member club. The annual recipient receives a nice medallion and their name published on the AKC’s website.

AKC Oustanding Sportsmanship Medallion

We will publish more information regarding both awards in the coming months. Nominations are to be made by members, and the membership as a whole with vote on the nominees. The first ABC Member of the Year award will be presented at the 2021 National Specialty.

Speaking of which, the National Specialty committee is working hard on the 2021 National Specialty, which is only eight months away. We hope many of you can make the event. The NS is an opportunity to meet other members, their Beaucerons, and network.


In the vein of sportsmanship, I would like to remind everyone that as a member of the ABC you represent the breed and the club, in person at events, in your everyday life, and on social media. The ABC Constitution requires members to “do all in its power to protect and advance the interests of the breed and to encourage sportsmanlike competition at conformation events, performance events, and all Club related activities.” The ABC COE also requires of members “to display good sportsmanship at all times” and “refrain from false or malicious criticism” about another dog, breeder, or owner. Although social media is not specified in the COE, the way ABC members conduct themselves reflects on the club. Remember that new members or potential members are there ask questions and learn, not to be criticized or pulled into old feuds. We, as ABC members, should be doing everything we can to help and mentor them as a new member of the Beauceron family. In doing so, we can to help them succeed which in turn means the ABC succeeds. Let us as a club live up to the standards of “outstanding sportsmanship” and lift one another up, especially during this particularly trying year.

Evaluating Instinct

Sarah E. Price

Instinct: An innate, typically fixed pattern of behavior in response to certain stimuli, from the Latin instinctus for impulse

Venturing into any new activity or sport can be daunting, and the foray into herding can be especially overwhelming. Unlike most canine sports, you have to determine if your dog has some level of instinctual herding capability before you can actually start learning to herd! A herding instinct evaluation is this first step. There is also a certificate issued to AKC registered dogs if they pass a formal test under a herding judge (Herding Instinct Test or HIT–not a title). You can see what an AKC judge is assessing in a HIT here. However, a trial is probably not the best place to expose your dog to livestock for the first time.

While Beaucerons are notoriously biddable and eager to work, there are some things that cannot be taught. The innate genetic desire to herd is one of those things. Although we partake in this traditional job as a sport today, generations of Beaucerons were selected and bred because of their behaviors toward livestock. It is hardwired into their genetics, in some more deeply buried than others, but some level of instinct is present. Training a herding dog is simply bringing those instincts out (principally the search, stalk, chase of prey drive) and molding it to perform desired tasks.

Erika Stevens observes Oath working with Shelly. Although not his first time on stock, it had been a while since his last lesson but his natural instincts were perfectly visible.

Although it sounds relatively straight forward, there are several key aspects to an instinct evaluation. A herding instructor is looking to see if the dog has some sustained interest in the stock, if their drive is appropriate, and if they are biddable to working with a handler to gather or fetch stock. For a potential trainer to assess a new herding prospect, they are going to set up the dog to have a positive and successful first outing around stock. This means that they are going to be in a small, controlled environment, with tame, dog-broke stock who are used to the general type of dog (hopefully). For a puppy especially, there should be no negative experiences during their first exposure. This means no corrections, no getting stepped on, or charged at, by stock, or squished against a fence. Also, no corrections from the owner for what can be perceived as “bad” behavior.

A trainer assesses multiple facets of the dog’s outing. Is the dog is trying to control how the stock moves, does it want to stop them, keep them together? Further, does the dog move around a loosely grouped set of sheep to prevent runaways? Does the dog “see” all the stock, and if a naughty sheep splits off does the pup see them, does it attempt to bring it back to the group? Does the puppy want to bring them to the trainer/owner/handler? Can the dog get the stock off a fence line or out of a corner, on their own or with some handler support? Will the dog change directions easily (believe it or not, dogs have a preferred direction, or ‘handedness’ like humans), and how far off the stock is it seeing and making these adjustments? All of these questions are being answered during an evaluation of a herding dog’s instinct.

Most herding training sessions are not very long, and the initial evaluation will not last long at all. You will likely have a short session on stock, followed by a period of rest, and possibly a second session. The length of time and number of sessions will depend on the age and response of the dog being tested.


Watching a herding instinct evaluation is probably one of my favorite parts of attending training. I had the pleasure of watching several Beaucerons on stock for the first time at the facility where I train. These were different dogs of different ages and from different lines. You will notice in the videos below that both puppies begin quite differently, but the endings are similar.

This puppy is obviously confident around sheep from the beginning. Notice the trainer drops the leash shortly into the session. One of the nice things you can see in the video is how she kicks herself out and around the sheep, particularly when one goes astray. You can also see that she takes the direction of the trainer well, obeying the pressure to change direction or move out. Toward the end you can see that she is feeling the balance between the trainer, sheep, and herself. Notice how she is taken off the field, being brought around to get another feel of moving the sheep, and then walked out still wanting more.

This second puppy was not quite as sure of herself, and her leash stays in hand during the first video to provide her guidance and support. She is definitely interested just not as confident to start.

A few sheep are removed from the field, and the session resumes in the second video. She is more confident but still wants to check in to make sure she is doing good.

This puppy was put up for about 45 minutes and then brought back out to work again. In the third video you can see how much more confident she is on her second run and how she is starting to connect her movements and actions to what the sheep are doing. She is just as reluctant as the first puppy to come off the field at the end of her session.