SALUKI BREED NOTES WEEKENDING 27THNOVEMBER 2020
Happy Thanksgiving to all my American compatriots. We cannot meet with friends and family this year but we can celebrate never the less. Normally, we have a few of our friends over for the big day, one friend had offered to host Thanksgiving dinner, one year, so I asked her if she knew how it was done, answer was “Christmas but early”. Hopefully we may be able to have some sort of ‘normal Christmas’.
Crufts has been announced as being held on Thursday 15thJuly 2021 at the NEC in Birmingham. Our judge will be Adele Walton Haddon. That will be a big weekend for shows as on the following Saturday, 17thJuly, The Hound Association will be holding their show at the Stafford Show Grounds. I have Jerry Robertson listed as the judge but if there is any change to this I will post in the notes. This will be very convenient for competitors coming from abroad as they will be able to attend two shows instead of the usual one.
Brian Duggan, has posted in social media that the American Kennel Club Gazette’s Saluki column, this month, is devoted to six children’s books about or with Salukis.
They are Danielle Caro’sA Home for Sydney, Julia Johnson’s Saluki, Hound of the Bedouin, Barbara Lindgren’s Rosa Goes to Day Care, Linda Armstrong’s Tanya’s Desert Star, Royr Gerrard’s Rosie and the Rustlersand Lynn Hall’s FLASH Dog of Old Egypt. With our experience with Salukis and children, they make excellent companions.
In last week’s ‘Our Dogs’ in Jane Lilley’s column she wrote about ‘Our extraordinary and unusual dogs.’ She featured Harvey owned by Jimmi Johnston -White, a Saluki, of course. Back to the article, Jimmi has kindly sent me his original copy:
“A bit of background for you first, I saw my first Saluki aged 4 when living in Algiers, owned by a couple originally from Qatar. I had grown up with Mum's Great Danes and Dad's gundogs, but this Saluki to me was the most beautiful dog I had ever seen, it was however quite wild. I wanted one though and kept pestering Mum and Dad, eventually they got me an Afghan who was beautiful but mad and maddening. Move forward 33 year from my first meeting with a Saluki and having a household of Mini Wire Dachshunds and Italian Greyhounds, at Southern Counties Championship Show, Mini Wires were due in the ring following Salukis, I sat thinking
if only. Then a rather handsome male came and joined me and my Mini Wire Dhanka, they fell in love, and his owner and I struck up a friendship. Two years later he was used, in house, on the owner’s bitch and I was given the last born of litter Harvey or Anasazi Late Harvest as The Kennel Club know him. It is worth noting that when Dhanka was very ill Harvey gave her a direct dog to dog transfusion (she had another 2 and a half years of life).
Everyone I knew in dogs kept telling me I had lost the plot, that I couldn't have a Saluki with small breeds that run, cats and guinea pigs, I was certain I could though. Ten years on and I am so pleased I took the plunge.
From the very start he had utmost respect for my very elderly alpha male Italian, he very quickly got used to the fact that all the other pack members thought that when he laid in a bed he was just additional bedding for them and would lay on top of him. He ignored the cats completely and just wanted to kiss the guinea pigs through the bars of their hutches or runs.
I knew from day one that I had to work hard on his training, to be honest it was a doddle, he just wanted to please. Harvey has the very best recall of all the 9 dogs we currently have in residence. The one shame was that he wasn't keen on showing, he saw no point in getting in a ring with a load of other Salukis when you could lay down at the Dachsie ring and have them climbing and sleeping on you. He has come into his own in other ways though, as well as living with so many other smaller animals and dogs, he has been used by me to go into school and work with children who were afraid of dogs or wary because of their culture, he has helped with the training of a great many rescue dogs, his first was the tiniest blue Italian Greyhound who was terrified of us, in came big Harvey and laid beside her. Mostly he has worked alongside me and my other half (known to the masses as TKH, The Kennel Hand) in the rehabilitation of aggressive and nervous Border Terriers. He works instinctively understanding what they need and how to behave, one dog, Taz, gets very aggressive around other dogs yet with Harvey he just copies behaviour and can run around with them and even mix within my pack.
Working away from home kennel sitting I miss him greatly, though he was always my dog and shadow he has learnt that in my absence he needs to supervise and help TKH and become his shadow.
Ten and a half years on from getting him I can honestly say I don't regret a moment, how many dogs can you leave in a room with your dinner on a coffee table, come back and it isn't touched? How many dogs have instant recall? How many dogs have helped so many other dogs take their first steps towards a new life? People do ask if I will have another Saluki and the answer is no, it was my long held dream and it came true in so many ways, it wouldn't be fair to the next one, it would be like asking someone to sing like Callas, act like Olivier, or run like Farrah. It just wouldn't be possible, so I shall just go on enjoying my dream dog for as long as possible and remember all the fun we have had.
As a matter of interest Jimmi will be judging the Northern Saluki Club Open Show on Sunday 26thSeptember 2021.
I received a copy of the ‘Kennel Club Gazette’ for December 2020 today. A welcomed surprise. Gay Robertson has written an article “Sighthounds gather in the Cotswolds”. This refers to the lure coursing meeting which was held in October under the auspices of UK Sighthound Sport. It was a Covid secure event. By the fact that this article appeared in the KC’s monthly magazine we hope in the near future they will recognize lure coursing as a legitimate KC activity. There was a small photograph of two Salukis taking off after the lure. They are Natasha Hamilton’s Alishamar Roxane and our own Kasaque Salaama.