Jimmy, Fleurette, Cali

Diane Arner-Motzkus and Eclipse Whippets

When I was a little girl, I always wanted a big dog, my parents always said no. So when I was out on my own, I bought a Black Lab, then another, then another. When I was living in Quakertown, people from Philadelphia moved in next door that showed Saluki, Dachshund, and Borzoi. I thought the Borzoi were nice but not my type, as Labs were the 'only dog for me'. Needless to say, into my life comes a Borzoi. For 3 years I dealt with the weekly brushings, 3 hours of bathing, blow drying, and fluffing getting these dogs ready for shows. Although I loved these majestic sighthounds, I just wanted a "wash and wear" dog, so to speak. Greyhounds just didn't seem as elegant as the Borzoi.

"Jimmy-George" Ch. Broadstrider's Gorgeous George

At a show in Maryland 1990, while standing ringside with my Borzoi, I noticed the Whippets in the next ring, and what I saw absolutely took my breath away. There stood the most elegant, attentive, devoted Whippet I had ever seen. He was such a stallion of a hound, and the communication between handler and dog was amazing. He actually showed himself to perfection, daring the judges to pick him or face the consequences. This dog was Am/Can Ch. Sporting Fields Kinsman, who later added the titles of MBIS/MBISS/NSBIS, ROMX to his name. "LUKE" as he is known by all who love him was my inspiration into this breed.

I introduced myself to Debbie Butt, his owner, breeder, handler and I asked about puppies, Luke's puppies, as I just had to have one of his kids. She informed me Luke had two litters on the grounds, so a week later, off to Sporting Field kennels a friend and I went. As you have probably guessed, home I came with a Luke puppy out of a BIS bitch. This puppy, Brandy, Seaspell's SF Lonesome Dove, although not shown to her championship due to her hating the show ring, became a Specialty winner herself. We unfortunately had to be put to rest in early June 2003 at 12-1/2 years of age. She is now running pain-free up on the other side of the Rainbow Bridge.

"Brandy" Specialty Winner Seaspell's SF Lonesome Dove
9/3/90 - 6/2/03

Debbie Butt and her mother, the late Donnie Butt were my inspiration in to the wonderful world of Whippets. They always welcomed me into their home and shared with me their vast knowledge of showing and show dogs. Sharon Sakson (Paris Whippets) also comes to mind. For without her I wouldn't have the insight of the importance of international bloodlines. And also Doug & Ruth Broadfoot (Broadstrider) who let me purchase a then 2 year old male they kept from a litter and had been showing. After arriving on the East coast from Texas, Broadstrider's Gorgeous George finished his championship quickly. Jimmy-George is still with me at 12 years of age and still siring litters.

Thanks to these people for being my mentors and friends, and answering my endless questions. I am forever grateful.


Left is "Blake" SBIS Can Ch. Eclipse Sporting Chance
And Right is "Lana" Sporting Fields Winterfest

Several favorite memories come to mind. The first is being out in Lompoc, CA at the Western Sighthound Combined Specialties in the early 90's. Debbie Butt, her daughter Lindsey, her mother Donnie and I went to the beach and let the dogs "crash the waves". What a sight it was to see the dogs immensely enjoying themselves. They had a great time and although I have a very memorable flexi-lead scar on my leg from Debbie's Greyhound, we had a great time also.

Another memory comes to mind is when my Am/Can Ch. Gatsby's Storm Warning, aka Teddy, was awarded BOS (over Group winning specials) to the incomparable Winnie, at the 1998 AWC Eastern Support. This was an amazing feat because Teddy was just so laid back in the ring, didn't want to give ears (except when the judge wasn't looking, of course), and would rather be at home on the couch instead of being with all these other dogs. He was just so sound and correct, the judges couldn't deny him, in spite of himself.

But the most recent favorite memory is after 12 years of being involved with this wonderful breed, is seeing a bitch I bred and own win a BPIS in the US and Canada, and also putting on a great performance at the 2003 Westminster Kennel Club show. This being Am/Can BPIS Am Ch. Eclipse Envy of Sporting Field. I'd like to think the future will hold great things for our Zoey.

"Zoey"

I think the future of our breed is looking good at this point. We had a bit of a dry spell where judges were putting up dogs that just weren't correct or sound. But the youngsters out right now are of excellent quality, as are the quality of animals being bred. A lot of people are striving for the dual purpose whippet, which is evidenced by all the titles being obtained in all venues of competition. Where we have been and where we are going, I feel is right on track.

"Dusty" Eclipse Pure Country

The thing I want to share with others is to PLEASE try to educate your puppy buyers and screen them carefully. The person who lives in NYC with no yard, but jogs with their dogs twice a day, and makes trips to the "dog park", may be a better home than someone who lives in the country with 10 acres. Whippets are wonderful, but they are not for everyone. If we keep close tabs on our litters of puppies, use the limited registration where applicable, and insist on spaying and neutering for pet quality Whippets, we just may get the list of rescues to ZERO.

Thus the story of Eclipse Whippets continues at.....http://www.eclipsewhippet.com...

Left is "Calypso" French Import Hocus Pocus du Sac a Malices
And Right is "Rascal" Windsong Justa Hearthrob

2006 addition:  Great things certainly were in store for my beautiful Zoey. 
Her show career is as follows:

In The US
18 - All Breed Best In Show
1 - All Breed Puppy Best In Show
3 - Specialty Best In Show
182 - Best of Breed (1 @ 2006 Westminster KC)
76 - Group 1
32 - Group 2
18 - Group 3
10 - Group 4 (1 @ 2006 Westminster KC)

And In Canada
1 - All Breed Best In Show
1 - All Breed Puppy Best In Show
1 - Specialty Best In Show
2003 Hound of the Year

She ended the year 2005 as the #1 Whippet, #3 Hound and #25 amongst all
breeds.  Needless to say, I am extremely proud of my Zoe-Zoe.

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