The following is an attempt to improve communication between the judges of our breed, and the people who show under them. 

1.  Are you an active breeder of German Shepherd Dogs? 

                Do you have a kennel name ?
                    Yes: "Breauhausen"
2.  How long have you been in the breed?  
                Approximately 39 years.

                When and how did you get started?
                    Our first GS, acquired in 1960, was a pet which we trained in obedience.  Attained a CD while learning about the confirmation part of the sport.  Joined the GSDC of Greater Washington, D.C.

               Are you affiliated with any clubs ?
                              Yes.  GSDC of Greater Washington, D.C., GSDCA, and Carroll Kennel Club in Westminister, MD.

3.  How long have you been judging the breed?
                    20 years
4.  How many times a year do you judge German Shepherds?
                    3 or 4
5.  Over the last 2 years has the number of shows:
   *         About the same 
               No answer
6. Have you ever judged the National Specialty? 

               If yes, when and what classes ?
7.  Do you prefer:
*             Specialties
               No Preference
               No Answer
                  a) do you judge at both all-breeds and specialties ?

                 b) would you judge at both all breeds and specialties

                  c) please elaborate on and explain your answers to 7, 7a and 
                    I prefer Specialties because the entries are generally deeper in quality, the ring size is more conducive to observing gait and there is a more sportsmanlike attitude among the exhibitors.  Because of the pressures of rings immediately adjacent to each other, and the sensitivities of other exhibitors, all breed shows are generally much more austere.

                  d) If you indicated a preference for Specialty assignments, 
             would you consider doing German Shepherd Dogs at an all-breed if you 
             were given a large ring, the entry was supported by a specialty club and 
             the show was on the same weekend as a nearby specialty or specialty 
             circuit ? 

          Please elaborate.
                    It has always been my feeling that if specialty judges are not willing to judge at all breed shows, then those shows will be judged by someone who is not as  knowledgeable of our breed and will result in something less satisfactory.

             8.  Do you have a color preference?
             Black and Tan
               Black and Red
               All Black
               Black and tan and black and red
          *   No preference
                  a) Would the color of a dog influence your judgment?
                              No (within reason)

                  b) Do you find it harder to judge solid blacks ?
                    No.  What I do find is that many judges are fooled by solid blacks and some are also swayed by crowd enthusiasm for solid blacks.
             9.  What importance do you place on condition of plush versus 
             smooth coat?
          * Important (All condition factors are important.)
               Not important
               No answer
             10.  When judging the dog do you also judge the handler?
    *         No
               No answer
             Please elaborate if possible.
                              The handler is part of the overall picture that the judge observes and therefore the abilities of the person handling the dog play a role in what the judge sees.  As far as who the handler is, how he or she is dressed, attitude and things of that nature, they do not influence me.
11.  What importance do you place on missing teeth?
               Very important
*             Important
               Not important
               Important and Not Important
               No Answer
12.  How do you see bites today?
 *            Very good
               No answer
13.  How do you see strength of ears?
               Very good
   *          Good
               Good and Poor
               No answer
14.  Do you feel the GSD's temperament has improved over the past 
             5 years?
   *          Yes
               No change
               No answer
15.  Do you consider temperament today to be?
 *            Very good
               No Answer
16.  Do you prefer a dog to be shown on a loose lead?
   *          Yes
               No answer
17.  How would you rate the following in sequence of importance?  
             (On a scale of 1 to 10, 10 being the highest).
 9           Coming and going
 9           Side Gait
 10         Temperament
 8           Teeth
 7           Coat
 9           Pasterns, hocks, feet
 5           Pigment
 9           Structure
 9           Shoulder and reach
 6           Attitude
          I am aware that I rated several items as "9".  They are all structure related and cannot be separated.

18.  Could you briefly describe your ring procedure, and any 
       changes you may incorporate between a small vs large class:
Generally, I ask the ring steward to arrange the dogs in catalog order.  Once they are all in the ring, I briefly look at them as they are posed and then take them twice around the ring.  I then begin individual examinations of the dogs, starting with temperament by requiring a loose lead approach, then a brief look at the posed dog followed by an examination of teeth, testicles (if male) and overall soundness of the animal while I am in such close proximity for a short period of time.  I then watch the dog coming and going, followed by one turn around the ring and falling in at the end of the line.

Once all individual examinations are complete, I usually gait them as a group for one or two turns and then arrange them according to my observations from the individual exams coupled with observations of their gaiting ability.  From there on, barring any obvious problems, it is a contest of gait, appearance, presence and soundness, as it is all demonstrated and observed.

I judge small or large classes in the same procedural manner except that I may divide a large class into smaller groups for initial comparisons and merge them after arranging each group according to my judgment of their placement within the group.
19.  Do you think there should be an age limit in placing points 
         on a dog (i.e. dogs and bitches under 12 months of age)?
*             No
               No answer
20.  If a dog is not exactly to the standard in size, would you 
             prefer slightly larger or smaller?
 *            Larger
               No Answer
21.  Do you think on average German Shepherd Dogs are too extreme?
 *            No
               No answer
22.  In your opinion should double handling be allowed?
               Yes and No (it needs to be subtle and controlled.  Only obvious when posed)
               No answer
23. Should all select dogs, in your opinion, be OFA (H&E)?
 *            No
              Long answer if desired: 
          While OFA (H&E) is extremely desirable, it cannot interfere with a judges decision as to structure, soundness and other characteristics.  As far as breeding to the animal, every dog owner has the capability to verify the OFA status of an animal and make their own decision as to breeding or not breeding to that animal.  The "select" title is reflective of the overall dog from a judges point of observation and OFA status should not be a consideration.
               No answer
24.  When making the final selection, the dog with the most front 
             reach usually wins the class?
 *            No answer
25.  Do you feel more emphasis should be put on the total 
             package, and less on movement?
                No answer
             Long answer: The key here is the word MORE and I can honestly say that movement is a major element of the "total package".  Personally, there are many factors that influence my decision and movement is not first, temperament is. Movement does, however, have a major influence on my
decision as it should in accordance with our Standard.
26. Do you think the German Shepherd Dog standard should be 
*             No
               No answer
             If yes, in what respects:
27. Do you think there should be any changes in any of the  existing rules concerning dog shows? Yes            

          If so, please elaborate: I think that AKC should lighten up with regard to their position on double handling. I also think that AKC should license professional handlers like they used to  but without the requirements for boarding facilities and such.  They should have a "code of conduct" that handlers would agree to in order to be a member of the PHA.
28.  Is there a dog, whether alive now or not, who to you typifies most closely     the "ideal" German Shepherd Dog ? 

          If yes, please explain and give details:
             "Ideal" is in the eyes of the beholder.  Many of our Grand Victors and Grand Victrixes have been exceptional representatives of the breed.  In addition, such dogs as Hawkeye, Hammer, Lance and Paladin could make chills run up your spine when they were at their peak.  They were all different but they all had spectacular characteristics that made you believe.
29.  Do you feel that in general the quality of the breed in this 
             country is getting better or worse ?   Better

          Please elaborate: We have finally achieved the optimum in balance and extension that gives us the beautiful, floating gait without overdoing it.  For many years we bred for extreme rears and paid little attention to fronts.  Then we realized the mistake and started breeding for fronts while maintaining a hindquarter that provided the optimum in drive that the front could support.  Now, we are seeing a more balanced dog with the most extension that this
size animal can support, both front and rear.  We still have the extremes but I believe that we are moving towards the optimum middle ground.
30.  Do you have a pet peeve about anything owners or handlers do
             concerning the showing of dogs ?  Yes 

          Some handlers, not all, try to intimidate judges with stares, dirty looks and derogatory comments.   The only effect that this has on me is to annoy me and therefore cause negative feelings toward the handler.
31.  Do you have any suggestions for owners or handlers regarding 
             anything they should ALWAYS do when showing under you ?

          Be courteous, be on time for the classes to the extent possible, and pay attention.  Each of us can make the other look bad during the conduct of a show.  Remember, I know that you are in there to win but so is everyone else.  I will do my best to be absolutely fair.  Give me the courtesy of accepting my opinion.

32.   Do you have any suggestions for owners or handlers 
             regarding anything they should NEVER do when showing under you ?
          Do not try to intimidate me.  Show me your dog to your best ability and promote the dog to me but do not give me the angry stare or under the breath comment in an effort to influence me.  I will be more than happy to discuss my decision with you when the show is over.
33.  Do you have any advice for people who are relatively new to 
             showing and/or breeding? Yes!

          Get next to someone who knows and listen and learn from them.  Do not be discouraged when you find out that your first dog is less than perfect.  Go to lots of matches and practice.  A little obedience work is advisable as well.  You learn a lot about how dogs think and what works when you do obedience.
34. Is there anything else you would like to say about judging or 
             about the German Shepherd breed today ? If so, please feel free to say it here: Yes.

          Too many judges are not judging with fairness and honesty in mind.  Either they are otherwise influenced or they just don't know.  It takes knowledge and the strength to stand behind your convictions to judge fairly and honestly.  If you do not have the strength of your convictions, or if you are thin skinned or biased toward a particular individual who is handling, exhibiting or breeding, you should not judge.    
35. Have you ever judged one the of the greats? If so, can you  give a rundown of this dog for the people who have not had the privilege   to see it. Yes.

          I had the pleasure of judging Ch. Dopplet Tay's Hawkeye about six months after Lorraine Clifford passed away.  Her daughter had been caring for the dog and had obviously put forth the effort to condition the dog, both mentally and physically.  Hawkeye was probably about seven at that time but in prime condition.  This dog was exceptional in type, size, color and all of those physical attributes that catch the eye.  In motion, he covered ground like a machine and he put on a show that no dog has equaled in my career as a judge.
Your Name: Leon A. Breault                                

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