Catherine M Thompson
Judging Approval Dates
As a judge, what are your personal preferences as they relate to the priority of judging this breed (movement, balance, head, front-end, rear-end, eye color, markings, etc...)
First is the silhouette, this takes in the proportions and balance. This separates the Rottweiler from the other breeds.
Some judges look as the Rottweiler as a "head breed", although there is so much more to the animal, what specifically do you look for in a correct head-piece?
Balance to the body; width and depth of muzzle, eye shape and color, then the size and set of the ears.
If judging two very similar dogs, what is the one characteristic that you'd look at twice to differentiate?
Front assembly and balance of movement.
Do you consider clear markings a high priority component of judging or more a cosmetic characteristic?
I consider markings as cosmetic, first the silhouette and movement.
As you have judged over the years, what have breeders improved upon? What is still lacking?
First, we have improved rears, now, we've lot almost everything. Type is sorely lacking as are fronts and rears, with the loss of the front assembly there went the toplines. Heads balance the body okay, but are missing muzzle strength.
How important is the role of the handler in presenting a dog?
For a Breeder Judge, it should not matter, but most handlers make an average dog look better than it is.
When judging the Best of Breed class, how do you balance judging the dogs vs. the bitches?
I do no have a problem, if the bitch is a better Rottweiler, up she goes. Unfortunately, many judges are taken with the mass of the Dogs, so in Rottweilers, it is hard for the Bitches to go up.
What is your procedure when a tailed Rottweiler joins in the competition in the AKC ring?
I just judge them. I consider the presence of a natural tail a fault and then judge the dog accordingly. Having a tail, is less a fault, in my mind, then a bad front or whatever.
Any additional comments?
Today's Rottweiler Fanciers need to remember to LEARN some of our AKC breeders really do no have a clear grasp of type, and the German styler needs to know more about good dog structure.