FC Chaparral's Bialy B Gone, CD, ARM, ORC, FCH, SC, CGC, AV

Gloria Goble of Whillo B Whippets has been involved with the whippet breed for about 13 years. My introduction to whippets came after I become very active in Tibetan Spaniels and served on the Board of Directors for TSCA. Dear friends, with whom I co-owned/bred Tibbies, took on the personal mission of saving Greyhounds and Bill and I adopted our first Track GH. We decided to course her. Since we do everything together, and Bill released Topaz on the coursing field, I started looking for a smaller version of the GH for my very own coursing dog. My first dog was a Sporting Field Bitch who earned her ASFA FCh in 4 Trials.

In the early days, I relied heavily on advice from Camille Mendicino. She advised me to get a dog with good bone and proper functional body if I wanted a durable courser. My Sporting Field Bitch was sired by Wistwind's wonderful courser, Amos (multiple LCMs). Camille also told me to let the pup pick me and it would be the right one in the litter. She was correct on both accounts. I got into racing when Camille looked at my second whippet a Comet bitch and told me that she needed to be raced. Until then, I'd never heard of whippet racing.

My favorite memory in the breed go back some years ago. There was a NOTRA race and my then, 2 A-graded bitches, were running in the same high point program. By name: Tabby aka Comet's Ta-Batha B Witched, ARM, FCH, ORC (12 points) and Bialy aka FC Chaparral's Bialy B Gone, CD, ARM, ORC, FCH, SC, CGC, AV Tabby always had a deep lean but Bialy always fought against leaning into the rail. She had learned that she could win at the NPR by being upright on all 4 feet. This special day, Bialy was determined that she was going to win the program from Tabby and it was pass and be passed for most of the race. They were nip n' tuck until Bialy made up her mind that if she had to lean, she would. She was absolutely determined that she'd not let Tabby in first. Bialy beat Tabby by a nose and both Bill and I can still see that race. Yes, it still brings tears to our eyes. Tabby is now 11 and Bialy is 9.

This is Lyth York, ARM, ORC. He is the all time #2 NPR dog of record. Also in Top Ten NOTRA all time.

I wish I could say that the breed has been improved over my years of association with these truly magnificent animals. I can't do that. As those who once bred stunning and functional whippet grow old and stop breeding, lots of "wanabees" are sprouting up. It seems to me that function is rapidly being bred out of many show lines. Thank goodness, most "hard core" racers are still breeding to have top race dogs and so long as that happens, there will always be a gene pool, even if it's limited, for the much larger breeder population to go back to -- if and when they seek to correct problems cropping up in their breeding programs. (I do acknowledge that some of this inter-breeding is already taking place and I see that as a positive in the whole scheme of things.)

I have attended many of the National Specialties held since 1992. In my eyes, that's the showcase for our breed. Each year, I see fewer dogs I want to take home with me and those I want are usually in the Coursing and Racing classes. I see much too much emphasis on cosmetics and too little on structure and soundness.

Our house isn't full of statues. Whippets have to be functional to appeal to us. Too many dogs I've seen - even at this year's National, have weak rears, slab-sided motion, straight fronts, poor toplines, over angulation, and too little back skull. Back skull is the head feature which enables me to see magnificent eyes and without it, I can't look through the windows to the soul of any whippet. Change is not always good and I fear that we are approaching a time when the up and coming majority of new judges, will have no memory of what the whippet was before their day and will think that what exists today is proper form and function.

Just as in racing, once the bar is lowered and any dog can get a title, the title is worthless and titles are used as a benchmark for future breeding programs. We can deceive ourselves and those who come to buy our pups but we can't deceive Mother Nature. Look at the German Shepard and remember well,...what was done to ruin this breed can happen to ours. "We, collectively; racing, coursing, and show breeders, are the caretakers of this special breed we all love with heated passion." I would share with others that whippets are the most versatile dog of all and have the most delightful personalities. They can be impossible to control when their prey instinct takes over and equally impossible to get off your lap when their cuddle instinct kicks in. To have a Whippet Soul Mate, who looks in your eyes and says I love you; I understand you, I accept you; I want to be with you forever, brings tears to my eyes. To have lived and not to have known the love of a Whippet would have been to have a hole in my heart.

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