Page 205 - ShowSight - April 2020
P. 205

                to our surprise, Corbyn tolerated the AHT very well and our fam- ily has been blessed with the addition of several new family mem- bers (each with distinct, playful, mischievous, Terrier personalities) which we couldn’t love more.
We are known as Woodland Manor Kennel or “WMK” on our pups’ registration papers. We use the term “kennel” loosely as our dogs are pets first and foremost. They live in our home, sleep in our beds and are with us wherever we are. We have been involved in this breed since 1999 (one of the longest active breeders). Yes, we breed them, but it is mostly to help the breed and as a hobby. When you are dealing with a rarer breed, it is important to try to keep as much quality genetic material in the pool. So, we happily breed those that are show/breed quality and health checked, with the goal of produc- ing wonderful, healthy, outgoing, well-adjusted, structurally sound, etc. animals. It is a lot of fun and a lot of work! It’s also very hard to part with the babies!
We are also very active in the conformation ring (and even show our own dogs) and a variety of performance events; lure cours- ing, Fast CAT, terrier/drag racing, weight pull, rally obedience, and agility. My husband completed two terms as President of the National Parent Club for the breed, the American Hairless Terrier Association ( (UKC). He is currently Vice President of the AKC AHT parent club—American Hairless Terrier Club of America and I am President of the first regional club, the Hurricane Alley American Hairless Terrier Association (www. (UKC). We are both official breed mentors for AKC judges as well as licensed UKC conformation judges.
My husband, Ryan, and I live just north of Tampa, Florida. I am a speech-language pathologist who is dedicated to serving our active duty service members and our veterans. My husband is a systems analyst/Vice President for a major bank.
Do we hope the breed’s popularity will change or are we com- fortable with the placement? Honestly, we have never given much thought to the ranking (this is the first I have seen this data).
Do these numbers help or hurt the breed? I hope that people research their dog breed based on their characteristics/traits and how those would mesh with their lifestyle vs. how popular the spe- cific breed is. We would never want any other breed of dog, regard- less of ranking.
Does the average person on the street recognize the breed? Abso- lutely not. They always ask what they are—some guess one of the other better known hairless breeds (e.g., Chinese Crested or Mexican Hairless—“Is that a Cocoa dog?”), but we’ve had some fun question like, “Is that a pink miniature hairless Dalmatian?”, “Is your dog really hairless?”
Are there any misconceptions about the breed I’d like to dispel? Judges believe that because our name is American Hairless Terrier,
that the coated variety of our breed is a fault. They are to be judged equally. If the coated is truly a better representative of our breed, that is the dog that should be selected. Some judges have literally said, “Well, I’d put up a three-legged hairless over a coated.” Clear- ly, additional education needs to be completed. It’s one of the things we stress when we are mentoring judges.
Also that their skin is difficult to care for and that they are frag- ile. These dogs are Terriers. They love to play and are quite resilient. Yes, they do get scratched up—that’s okay! Their skin will heal quickly. They will burn just like humans if left outside in direct sunlight, particularly the lighter colored ones. In that case, they would need sun protection (sunscreen or clothing). However, they should not wear clothes 24/7 as that can cause skin issues (pore clogging). They do not need to be bathed every day. In fact, bath- ing when dirty, or weekly for those with allergies, is quite sufficient.
They do not sweat on their bodies to cool themselves. They pant and do “sweat” through their pads. There are no sweat glands on their bodies. They do secrete oil, but they are not greasy like hairless cats.
They are not “hypoallergenic.” The only hypoallergenic dog is a ceramic dog. Sure, the hairless variety is an excellent choice for many allergy sufferers. However, we have been facilitating allergy trials across the world for the last 20 years. The data shows that only about 25% of allergy sufferers have no reaction to the breed. Another 25% has the same reaction to this breed as other coated breeds. The remaining 50% have some reaction, but it is less severe than their typical reaction and that means that some of these people can live with the breed, while others cannot as the reaction is still too significant.
What special challenges do breeders face in our current econom- ic and social climate? I think COVID-19 is going to pose a particu- lar challenge for breeders right now. With limited travel, there will be limited options for stud service and once pups are born, getting pups to new owners will be very difficult or impossible (no overseas travel). With lockdowns, repro vet access will be reduced or com- pletely unavailable. These restrictions also mean limited opportu- nity for socializing new puppies, which is critical to normal/healthy development. Then, of course, there is the obvious, as small busi- nesses fail or struggle and household income is reduced markedly, who is going to be able to pay for a $2,000 puppy or their food, vet, supply needs? We only have one litter/year usually and are not going to consider a breeding until fall/winter.
Additional challenges include the “Adopt Don’t Shop” and the “doodle” madness. The social stigma of purebred dog breeding can certainly be challenging, “Why would you want to make more dogs when so many are homeless?” The doodle and other mutt/unique
Sure, the hairless variety is an excellent choice for many allergy sufferers. However, we have been facilitating allergy trials across the world for the last 20 years. The data shows that only about 25% of allergy sufferers have no reaction to the breed.”

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