|Shetland Sheepdog New Breed Now Seen at English Shows
Shetland Sheepdogs Will Be Shown at Pet Exhibition ...
Pet Dog Society's Exhibition in London
The New York Herald, Paris, Friday, December 3, 1909
The New York Herald, 03.12.1909, page 3:
"Shetland Sheepdog New Breed Now Seen at English Shows
Animal Is Miniature Collie, although Kennel Club Declines to Class It as Such.
(FROM THE HERALD'S CORRESPONDENT.)
LONDON, - A novel breed of dog that is making its appearance in English show rings, and one that is bound to come to the front, for it is in the hand of the right people, is the Shetland sheepdog. From its name one who has not seen a specimen would imagine the variety to be something similar in make and shape to the long-haired bobtail, or a cross between that breed and the Scotch collie, as it is well known such an union produces an ideal dog for herding cattle. Such, however, is not the case. The Shetland sheepdog is not a large dog at all; in fact, it is smaller than a Pekingese spaniel. Its real name is Shetland collie, and it is a collie in minature.
Certainly the exhibits so far seen in London do not possess the beautiful lines of the graceful collie, and none of them has the finely pointed head of the larger Scotch dog; but in other respects there are many resemblances between the two. Owners of these dogs include the Countess of Aberdeen, who has several fine specimens in Aberdeen Tibbie, Marquess and Aberdeen Norna, the first mentioned of which trio gained chief winning honors at the recent Ladies' Kennel Association show; Mrs. Feilden of Beaconthorpe, Holt, Norfork; Miss A. Duncan, of Knossington Grange, Oakham, both of whom were also successful at the same exhibition; and Mrs. C. Ashton-Cross, the owner of the famous Pekingese spaniel ...
Mrs. Ashton-Cross, who in addition to being the leading exhibitor of Pekingese in England, ... , is the possessor of some fifteen Shetland sheepdogs which so far have not made their appearance in a show ring, as she has been putting them through a course of physic and they are not yet up to show form.
Classed as 'Shetland Sheepdogs.'
It seems that when overtures were made by owners of Shetland collies to the Kennel Club, the governing body in canine affairs in England, quite a storm of disapproval was raised by collie breeders, and the outcome of it all was that while the committee of the Kennel Club refused to allow the breed to be represented as 'Shetland collies,' it agreed to accept them as 'Shetland sheepdogs.' So the breed is now classified at the premier doggy institution as such.
On inquiry at the Kennel Club regarding the standard by which Shetland sheepgods are judged, a correspondent of The HERALD was referred to Mr. J. A. Loggie, the secretary of the Shetland Collie Club, but as that person resides at Lerwick, in the Shetland Islands, not much satisfaction has so far been gained on the point.
Nor could Mr. Holland Buckley, the well-known terrrier expert who adjudicated upon them at the recent show at the Horticultural Hall, Westminster, enlighten one, for on being asked to give this standard Mr. Buckley replied, 'There is non.' 'I simply awarded the prizes to the exhibits which seemed to me to have the most quality.'
The dogs being classed as sheepdogs, Mr. Buckley was questioned about their working qualities, to which he replied: 'All I know about them is that people who own them claim they will herd sheep.' And he emphasied the word 'will.' 'But whether they will do so I cannot say, as I have never kept them.'
Objects to Objections.
Mrs. Feilden, who is a daughter of Princesse Caroline Murat, is so delighted with these little dogs that she is going in quite strongly for them. Mrs. Feilden was rather hurt at the objections of the collie breeders to their being scheduled as 'Shetland collies.'
'What better specimens of a toy collie do they want than that?' she asked, pointing to one of her pets, which was indeed a charming little doggie. 'Shetland sheepdogs' appropriately describes them, however, for that is really what they are.' It being suggested that the dogs seemed rather small to herd sheep Mrs. Feilden replied: 'Oh, no! Shetland sheep are very small, and these dogs are quite large enough for that purpose. I have never seen them at work, I must confess, but I am assured that they do so, and very well. Furthermore', added Mrs. Feilden, 'they make charming house pets.' "
The New York Herald, 09.12.1909, page 3:
"Shetland Sheepdogs Will Be Shown at Pet Exhibition in Horticultural Hall
(FROM THE HERALD'S CORRESPONDENT.)
... Althogether there are 931 entries, ...
As usual, the majority of the exhibits are owned by women many of whom are well known in society, among whom may be mentioned: ... Mrs. Ashton Cross and Mrs. A. Feilden, of Baconsthorpe, Norfork.
Class to Themselves.
The two last mentioned exhibitors have the classes for Shetland sheepdogs to themselves as Lady Aberdeen is not sending any of her dogs which won at the recent L.K.A. show. These little dogs should attract additional interest to the exhibition under notice, as I learn that the refusal of the Kennel Club to schedule them as Shetland collies owing to the objections of collie breeders, has so greatly boomed them that the supply of them has proved unequal to the demand with the result that people who own them in the South of England are asking exorbitant prices for them. As the HERALD pointed out recently these little dogs have caused quite a stir, but much as they are discussed very few people know what they really are.
MR. LOGGIE TELLS 'HERALD' OF 'SHETLAND SHEEPDOGS.'
Describes Work They Do as Herders on Islands.
(FROM THE HERALD'S CORRESPONDENT.)
LONDON, Wednesday. - It being so difficult to get a definition of the Shetland sheepdog, the new breed which is now making its appearance at English shows, owing to the fact that so few people know anything about them, the HERALD has obtained an interview with Mr. James A. Loggie, the secretary of the club which governs the breed. In addition to many interesting details concerning this little dog which bids fair to become very popular, Mr. Loggie, whose home is as far north as Lerwick, in the Shetland Islands, gives many points which should interest those who have already taken up the breed and educate those who contemplate doing it.
In the first place Mr. Loggie points out that all animal life in the Shetland Islands is small. Not only are the subjects of the interview little, but Shetland sheep, cattle, and even poultry are diminutive. Coming to Shetland collies, or as they are now known, Shetland sheepdogs, Mr. Loggie said: -
'In Shetland the great majority of crofts have no fences or dykes and the hill pastures are shared by the crofters each of whom has the privilege of putting as many sheep on it as the size of his croft allows. The land around the crofts is cultivated, and it is necessary to protect it from them sheep grazing on the hill, and for this purpose each crofter keeps a dog known locally as the 'Peery' dog (which means small), the 'toon' dog, crofts being called 'toon' or 'town,' and again sometimes called the 'bater' dog (meaning the driving dog), but most generally known as the Shetland collie.
'Edmondstone, in his book on Shetland, describes these dogs and defines the word collie as a sheepdog or one of the sheepdog kind. A crofter owning from three to sex acres has no necessity for keeping a large dog, and, moreover, the average crofter grudes a large dog his food. They, however, keep the small dogs to 'bate' or 'caa' the sheep off the 'toon' lands back to the hills.
'Some critics have held that these small dogs are quite incapable of working sheep like a Scotch collie. This is not true. I know plenty of them which can round up a flock of sheep with any dog. I myself own two which have been broken on an island where six hundred ewes are kept, and these did their share of the work required of them . Their height is thirteen inches and weight about twelve pounds. The Shetland sheep is much more agile than south country sheep. A five-foot wall does not deter them from getting out if they want to.
'I admit animals have been foisted on the public south purporting to be Shetland collies which are not and never would be known as such. However, the club formed last year has done a great deal to remedy this. The demand for very small dogs by buyers in the south has led to an undesirable element being introduced. Every buyer clamored for the smallest dogs, irrespective of type, and all along I have fought for type, relying that size would come in time. There is no doubt that the genuine native animal is a degenerate Scotch collie and years of inbreedng have brought it to its present size.
Must Be Smaller.
'From my own careful observation and from what I have gathered, the best specimens of the island dog for forty years have been those thirteen and fourteen inches high, but, like the Pomeranian, fashion demands him to be smaller. This can easily be got without alien blood. Many years ago the whalers on their way home from Greenland called at Shetland to land the men belonging to those islands who formed part of their crews, and some of them brought with them what was known here as the 'Yakki' dog, called after the natives of Greenland, who are known by the whalers as 'Yaks.' Traces of this dog, which was found very useful by the crofters here, are still in evidence in the islands. The Shetland collie is a most affectionate and faithful animal and requires very little food and attention. They are not very prolific, generally running about three in a litter, and then females predominate by two to one.
'The great attraction from the buyer's point of view is as pet dogs, and no kinder or more lovable animal exists. They are very affectionate to children and never treacherous. I believe I am the first person to ship any to America, having sent specimens to Mr. J. G. Sherman, Jr., of New Rochelle, N.Y.' "
The New York Herald, 11.12.1909, page 3:
"Pet Dog Society's Exhibition in London Proves Success from All Points of View
(BY THE HERALD'S SPECIAL WIRE)
LONDON, Saturday. - The Pet Dog Society's exhibition of ... and all breeds of toy dogs was duly held at the Horticultural Hall, Westminster, yesterday. It was an allround success. ...
In all there were some twenty-three different breeds of canines to be seen at the show. ... Not by any means the least interesting classes were those for Shetland sheepdogs. These clever little miniature collies were not only weak in numbers but poor in quality. They were all shapes and sizes, few of them possessing any type. They were handled by a different judge to the one who was adjudicated upon them at the recent Ladies' Kennel Association show, Mr. Harding Cox now presiding over them instead of Mr. J. Holland Buckley.
Like Mr. Buckley, Mr. Harding Cox sacrificed type altogether and awarded the prizes to the smallest exhibits. Miss A. Duncan's Queen of Shetland, a tiny tot weighing about three pounds, won the open class from Mrs. C. Ashton-Cross' We McGregor of Alderbourne and Mrs. A. Fielden's Odin of Baconthorpe, while Queenie was again to the force in the class for limit dog or bitch."
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