Learning the Ropes

Judges' advice, from start to finishing.

By Sue Jeffries |

Page 3 of 3

Martorella concludes with one final bit of advice: Win or lose, don't pack up and go home after your breed. Stay around, observe some other judging, and get to know the dog people. We are all a very competitive bunch; however, most of us admit that, when one of us is in need, we can be the best family you could ever have.

Edd Bivin of Ft. Worth, Texas, who is approved to judge five Groups and Best in Show, has been judging for 44 years. He showed his own dogs, starting with Pomeranians. His encouragement includes the following:

Understandably, many new people are overly nervous and even frightened when they come in the ring, he says. One of the things I frequently say to people who tell me this is their first time in the ring is, Look around! Everyone here came to a dog show for the first time at some point, and for many of us, that was many, many years ago. That seems to put them at ease. And I tell them to have fun, to enjoy the sport of purebred dogs, and that its a wonderful place to be.

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