Salukispesialen 2009

What an honor to judge Salukis in Norway! Great hospitality, fantastic food and drink, wonderful company, amazing show grounds, gracious exhibitors and high quality Salukis all made for a truly pleasant experience of judging at your specialty. A very special thank you to the club for making sure I was taken care of so well. The entire trip is an experience I will remember with much fondness.

Before I continue I must say thank you to the two women who helped make my day so easy. Both the Ring Steward and the Scribe did an excellent job and I appreciated their assistance throughout the day.

As I have never judged in Norway or any other Scandinavian country before, your classes and rating system was new and unfamiliar to me. Although I had prepared myself, until I actually got into the ring and started my evaluations it was difficult to predict my reaction. I instantly found your judging system to be refreshing. Coming from the United States where we simply pick one, two, three, four placements with no critique it seams much more thoughtful to have to take a moment and verbally comment about each dog.

When doing my critiques I tried to focus on the positives and those features which I find an important part of breed type. I believe owners already know the obvious faults of their own dogs so I try not to fault judge thus I generally focus on the positives of the dogs when giving the critiques.

The Salukis were of such good quality. I was very pleased to award my winners with top awards but I also appreciated many others who are very good Salukis. Sometimes I had to choose one over another for a very small preference. These placements could easy be made differently on another day with different performances and certainly other judge’s opinions.

My overall impressions from the day are that I had some fantastic quality Salukis! It is typical to see the bitch quality substantially higher than that of the dogs but I did not see it this way. I found many good Salukis of both sexes. In several of the classes I had several that did not place which I thought to be very deserving. Many of my placements were made by only minor details. I always want Saluki type first and then I look for a balanced, light, easy side gait and finally soundness coming and going. I do not want a Saluki to look like it is working hard to cover ground, but rather do so with ease and yes, some style that says, “I am not just another dog – I am a noble one!”

Some of the things I do not like to see are rough neck into shoulder sets, soft top lines, high set tails and tails carried up and over the back. These are just my personal preferences.

I would like to mention a few Salukis that made an impression on me in addition to my top winners:

#2 in Open Dog Class: Volante's Biarritz in this class was a beauty, the type I like very much and pushed hard for first place.

#3 in Open Dog Class: Dahaqin Adabi Atil is a dog I wanted to place higher and perhaps could have won this class but did not want to move freely around the ring for his owner. I tried to give this youngster time to show me his real outline on the move but he decided differently and I respected him as a Saluki for his strong will and integrity but would like to see him again on another day. 

Volante's Chimaera – another good quality bitch. I think perhaps in the future will push the first bitch even harder as she in her own right shows much quality all over. This was a very nice class of two.

Hirondelle de Lunduki – I liked this bitch very much but she was not as thrilled about my presence. She is the balance and outline I very much like and had potential to be placed higher in the class had she wanted to please her owner a bit more in the ring and cooperate.

Volante's Zola – This bitch just melted my heart. She is perhaps the closest to my ideal Saluki of the day. Although obviously past her prime age for the show ring her quality still shows through with no problem. This is the outline I love, the long clean neck, the angulation and balance, the head and expression of such dignity and beauty. No doubt she understood I appreciated her very much by the look in her eye.  I fell instantly in love with her.

Barakisch Narm Xubi de Lunduki – This is also another very good bitch from the veteran’s class. She is not showing her age much at all and is still a very good mover. Such smoothness and balance. Both of these bitches are very good examples of Salukis.

Onto the winners:


Best male 1 –
 Volante´s Bizzarini
When I saw this dog I thought to myself this looks much like a dog from my own home. He is made of the lines and curves I love very much. He has that classic look made by having a deep brisket and small male waist, he has a strong and clean neck, thick thigh with much cover, smoothly set shoulders and nice easy movement. All this with a pretty face as a bonus. I like this dog very much and it was my pleasure to give him the top award of the day.

Best male 2
  Baklava´s Ushid
Another dog of such good quality and stunning beauty. I could have awarded this dog first place and he pushed the winner very hard in his class. Such balance with moderation and a good mover in all directions all in a handsome male package. This is another dog to be very proud of. I believe these two dogs are great examples of Salukis.

Best male 3  Al Wathba Bahram Al Nadir
This such an impressive youngster. This boy is well made with that nice balance of looking masculine but also elegant at the same time. He has that hard to find quality of being beautiful and masculine at the same time. I expect with a little more maturity he will be winning the top awards in the future.

Best male 4  Khalils Tarab
My open dog class had many nice entries and I chose this winner on overall good construction and nice easy light movement. This boy is not overdone in any area and shows great balance in his structure. Not a dramatic dog but a high quality Saluki.


Best bitch 1
  Volante's Ca'la Bionda
Nothing overdone on this girl and yet maintains that something special which is so hard to find and describe. Her outline with deep brisket and tiny waist is very pleasing.  The smooth flow down her neck into her shoulders is truly lovely.  I found it difficult to take my eyes off her. She moved with a lightness and ease that I love very much and represents a type of Saluki I admire.

Best bitch 2  Badavie Irresistible Girl
This girl caught my eye right off. She has a flowing outline, strong but not doggy. Smooth and well muscled but not coarse. Nice balance in front and rear angulation and nice movement from the side. Very pretty head and expression.

Best bitch 3  Barakisch Qabil Advie
Wow is what I thought when I first spotted this girl. Her outline, her movement, her quality. It is all so apparent and so “Saluki”. I love pretty much everything about her and her faults are minor. Both she and #2 bitch pushed for the top award very hard. It was also my pleasure to award her the best smooth and best movement classes.

Best bitch 4  Courtborne Sinaxs Antera
This bitch can move!  Standing she is moderate and balanced but her real asset is when she takes flight. I could watch her move all day. She fought very hard for this spot and best JR class but never once letting down.  I was pleased to award her and I suspect with more maturity she will also have much more success in her future.

Best puppy:
This young puppy has good outline and balance. He has nice thick thighs and a pleasing outline and strong across the top.  At this age it is difficult to tell how one will fully mature but he is off to a good start.

Best working dog: A grizzle parti dog with balance. A flowing outline and nice smooth neck into shoulder placement.

Best particolor: Dahaqin Asiq Ajaban – Grizzle parti dog this dog has good Saluki type and nice details such as great eye shape, low hocks and strong correctly arched topline. He has good carriage and knows how handsome he is.

Each and every single person who showed their Salukis to me were friendly and respectful of my opinions. This is very much appreciated and left a very positive feeling for your organization and its hard working members. You can be very proud to have put on such a first class Saluki Specialty.   It was a pleasure to judge each and every dog that was shown to me. Thank you for the opportunity.

Deric Aube