President’s Message

For those of you who don’t know me - I have been in purebred dogs for over 35 years, and Bouvier des Flandres for almost 30 years. My love for the breed started when I first saw them at an AKC show. I told myself that someday I would own one of those gorgeous dogs. The rest has been history. My first Bouvier was American Canadian Champion as an owner handled dog that went group 1 and High in Trial at the same show. I was hooked. I joined ABdFC and became very active with the club. I was National Show Chair in 2005, have been Versatility Chair, By-Laws Chair, Vice President, President and Chairman of the Board in the past. I have actively shown and put on titles in Conformation, Obedience, Rally, Agility and dabbled a bit in herding. I have taught obedience classes to the public for 20 years. I was a 4H dog project leader and started a 4H Therapy Dog program. I have had several therapy dogs myself and was a certified evaluator for Delta Society the national therapy dog organization. So my love for the Bouviers runs deep, as they are such a versatile breed. I currently have a 12 year old male, a 9 year old female and 15 month old female.

I would like to take this opportunity to thank the past President – Susan Costanzo, and Board of Governors Pat Holmes and Christa Townsend for their service to the club.

The Board in the past year made great strides in getting the Bylaws of our club revised. The revision will be presented to the Club membership in mid-January 2015. The current Constitution and Bylaws were voted on by the ABdFC Membership in 1979, with approval and acceptance by the American Kennel Club on November 11, 1979. Minor changes in the text corrects grammar or spelling, modernize prior archaic language, or creates better flow between Sections and items. The revision also addresses communication by email, and the acceptance of teleconference or videoconference for meetings. Dues were set in 1979 at the current level: Open/Regular $30.00 and Junior ½ the Open/Regular amount. Dues have not been increased since our Constitution and Bylaws were approved by AKC in 1979. The Officers and Board of Governors do not anticipate a dues increase in the near future. But, should our financial situation drastically change, the Board of Governors will need the flexibility to increase dues in order to maintain the Club at a minimal level.

After we have a vote on the Bylaws (hopefully in March of 2015) some of the future work for the ABdFC Board will be looking at and revising our Code of Ethics. These also have not been revised since 1997, and a lot of changes have come about in how various AKC registrations are handled.

I read with interest an article in the fall 2014 edition of the Dirty Beards, written by Sue Vroom, AKC Representative. She did a great job of explaining the “AKC Rules, Regulations and Policies…..How they Relate to You”.

I think we might also want to incorporate these AKC Rules and regulations in regards to excusals and disqualifications into our ABdFC Code of Ethics. There have been instances - such as correcting faults i.e., bites and mismarks/color, entering shows incorrectly etc….

All though these types of things are covered under AKC Rules and Regulations - I think we need to make it very clear to our ABdFC members that violations of this sort would be against our breed and Code of Ethics. We as a breed should not tolerate these kinds of violations and should make it clear to our members that we need to uphold AKC policy in our American Bouvier Des Flandres Club Code of Ethics. With this spelled out clearly in our Code of Ethics it would make for a better protocol and procedure for bringing violators up on charges should the need arise. We might also want to incorporate the AKC Code of Sportsmanship into our Code of Ethics.

As always if you have concerns about something, don’t just complain – bring solutions and help solve problems. Volunteer and get engaged in your club – it is your club. Because after all it is for the love of the Bouvier!

Dennis Craig
American Bouvier Des Flanders Club - President

Last Updated on Friday, 14 November 2014 19:38