“The beginner may think that investigating what has happened in the past is outside his field of interest, or that this can be gone into later when he has produced some puppies and is well on his way. It should be remembered that trying to discover what has produced success in the past can have great influence on what is to be done in the future. The true long-time breeder understands that breeding one outstanding dog is a tremendous step forward but that true success depends on the ability to produce such animals consistently.

It takes time to develop records and the sooner a breeder starts collecting photographs and pedigrees, along with names of both typical and untypical specimens of the breed, the quicker he comes to understand the possible cause for what he sees before him. Developing one’s own record system wherein lists of names make sense is a good practice, and various parts should be available for instant use.

Such things as show and field trial catalogs not only give the breeding of various dogs but show the competition what a prospective winner is up against and as such should be kept for reference. Reading and filing judges’ critiques of dogs on the way up is very instructive, and very interesting material to return to after a dog has become famous. This British custom of recording judgments should be adopted elsewhere but it takes courage and knowledge on the part of a judge.”

Dorothy Howe, Rupert