This past January 18, 2017, Wednesday, a day before the Philippine Circuit Show and on the 23rd of January 2017 a day after the Circuit Show, the Philippine Canine Club Inc.’s Judges Development and Licensure Committee hosted a Judges Seminar as part of it Continuing Education Program.

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Dinky Santos introducing Bill Shelton on the left.

APAC President and PCCI President Dinky Santos has taken the bull by its horns and has taken over the Judges Development part of the JDLC (Judges Development and Licensure Committee). One of his first projects which will be a yearly mainstay is to avail of the invited Judges of the Philippine Circuit Show as lecturers of the Seminars. He has also made attendance of the local judges to the seminar mandatory. A yearly required number of seminars now has to be attended similar to professional continuing education.

On the 18th of January 2017 Wednesday, we had Desmond Murphy to lecture on the Chow Chow, Bill Shelton on the Welsh Corgi Pembroke and Edd Bivin on the Pomeranian. On the 23rd of January 2017 Monday, we had Francesco Cochetti on the Chihuahua and Jack Russel Terrier, Michael Camac on the Lhasa Apso, Claudio de Guiliani on the Bracco Italiano, Rony Doedijns on the Newfoundland, and Gopi Krishnan on the Dachsuhnd. The Moderator was Dinky Santos.

The first day was jam-packed as exhibitors also attended the              seminars. Edd Bivin himself was expecting just 20 judges and an open format discussion, but he was surprised to see a crowded function room of 50+ enthusiatic listeners.

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FCI President Rafael De Santiago giving a welcome, with Edd Bivin on the right.

All the Speakers are seasoned Judges Seminar lecturers. Format of lecture included a history of the breed with emphasis on it’s function and purpose. Followed by a rundown of the FCI standard with a discussion of faults, disqualifications and cause and effects of exaggerations on each specific section of the standard as well as comparisons with other standards.

Discussions were always lively. Desi Murphy asked Edd Bivin about the Pomeranian head and its muzzle and how we are seeing 2 distinct head types. I asked about a Pem having the AKC +40% length of back vs a much longer back based on the FCIs “moderately long back” standard. An interesting discussion was between fellow Italians Francesco Cochetti and Claudio De Guillani. Francesco personally believes that being an active breeder is of help when judging because when choosing between two excellent entries, he would choose the one that would clearly help improve the breed most if used for breeding, this was seconded by Gopi Krishnan. Claudio disagreed and said that he judges against the standard and would choose the one that best fits the standard since there is no such thing as the perfect dog. Claudio was honest to admit that he is not a breeder and that he did not feel that it was a handicap. I also loved the lecture of Michael Camac showing actual photos of different faults and exaggerations of the Lhasa both in coat and cut down. Rony Doedijns mentioned that he appreciated the discussions and found them very interesting. At the Judges Seminar during the Cebu Judges Commission Meeting last January 2016, Rony spoke about the problems of exaggerations and how it is affecting form and function. During this Circuit Show Seminar, Rony correlated these problems with the Newfoundland. I enjoyed and learned from all the lecturers. The Italians made interesting discourse, Francesco is Canine Judge Royalty because his father was also a judge. Both Francesco and Claudio are writers and authors, their knowledge of canine anatomy is amazing, I am familiar with their mentors who are renowned, making me conclude that they too are a notch above.

 

 

Epictetus was right when he said-“It is impossible for a man to learn what he thinks he already knows.” During the Seminar,  I heard an All Rounder rib another All Rounder on why they have to attend these Seminars with the resumé that they already have. I just smiled, and said to myself “how cocky.” Some weren’t impressed with the seminar. You can nitpick about so many things, I myself would tweak things for the next years seminar. But, I’m also a results oriented leader, and the result of this seminar did not fail me. I have always been a half glass full type of guy. As judges, we are in the ring to judge positively as much as possible. To me the Seminars were a learning opportunity. I enjoy attending seminars and lectures on topics that interest me, I enrol in university subjects  without credits, all this to keep my mind going. Once we get to the winter of our life, things slow down, including our mind. Keep on learning while you can during your lifetime. Find the time, to attend the Philippine Circuit Judges Seminar Series, I assure you of something that will be learned.