Columns: No Margins, No Limits, No Kidding!
GROOMING RULES IGNORED
I read the story "RULES WORK WHEN ENFORCED" by Tam Cordingley, with great interest. The author is correct, rules do work when enforced.
January 2017 update
Dee Mapley, Guest Columnist
The problem is we live in a "dog show grooming rules" world where it is easier to turn a blind eye than enforce rules because show/club officials they think they will lose a few dollars or entries.
Did they [UKC and AKC] ever stop to think that by enforcing the rules more people will come and revenue will actually increase? Honesty draws crowds.
Anyone taking a walk down the grooming isles at the recent UKC Premier could easily see the cans of hair spray, wax, chalks, eye liners, make-up, powders, etc., sitting in plain, unabashed view on tables and in tack boxes. The scent of hair spray and perfumes for the dogs was wafting through the air in the confirmation building.
How could UKC officials not see or smell these grooming violations? The offending exhibitors were brazenly using these grooming enhancement substances right out in the open! These things shouldn't even be allowed in the building. So why didn't UKC officials tell the offenders to leave the show and come back after they bathed their dogs?
When I mentioned the open use of illegal grooming substances to a UKC official, I was informed that it was up to the judges to detect the substances and dismiss the offenders. I asked if the UKC could make up a list of prohibited grooming items and/or simply state that only shampoo and cream rinse was allowed. (Since show dogs are bathed so often, their hair gets dried out and full of static. A dog who gets shocked jumps like spit on a frying pan. This is why cream rinse is needed.) Certainly that would clear up any ideas about what is or is not permitted?
I was informed that it wouldn't make any difference and the list, if made, would never be complete. (I guess this means we shouldn't even try.) At this point in the conversation I mentioned that the cheating is getting so bad that UKC is destined to wind up just like that "other club" and it is unfair to those of us who follow the rules." All I received was a befuddled gaze.
I did hear about one judge at the show who dismissed a junior handler who had a dog full of grooming chalk. You have to wonder what the family of that child was thinking. One, teaching a child that cheating is okay and two, setting the child up for the humiliation and embarrassment of being dismissed for cheating. Good job! I truly feel sorry for that child. On the other hand I applaud that sainted judge.
Everyone I talk to who shows in UKC says they came there because of their no tolerance stance. They applauded that fact. However, it is many of these same people who are taking the club down by breaking the rules. I have to ask these people; "How can you possibly feel good about a win when you had to cheat to get it? Are you really proud of yourself? Aren't you the least bit embarrassed by what you did?"
I can honestly speak for the 2 silver toy Poodles and my own silver miniature Poodle at the Premier...we did NOT use any additives on our Poodles. Nothing, nada, not a thing. We proudly won and we did it fair and square! You would never find any of these substances in our bags at any show. Not ever, and we welcome anyone to search our bags at any time. The only hair spray I brought to the show was on my own head.
It is up to each exhibitor to police the shows and let the offenders know that they will be turned in and the judge of the day will be informed of their use of prohibited substances for show grooming. Then we can only hope the judge will do the right thing. If we don't do this, no one else will, and we will have only ourselves to blame when UKC becomes just like that "other club."
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