How often have we as purebred dog owners, fanciers, and affectionados suffered through the ignorant charge that today’s purebred dog can’t do the job for which their breed was created, or that they just can’t work at all. We happen to think this particular sentiment is rubbish, and our series, “Not Just Another Pretty Face,” aims to prove it.
Exhibit A is “Zephyr,” a Smooth Collie whose kennel name is an alphabet soup of titles. Ready?
It’s OTCh, HChA, ATChC, GVCh, Am.Ch & BISS Ch & DCh. Signet’s “Way To Go!” Woodruff, Can. (DD, HAs, SDA, HX, AgX, AgXJ, RAE), Am.(CDX, HSAs, RE, NA, NAJ), CRXMCL, STDsd, HRDII, RLFII, HTADI, SilverAOM, ExStSilver, ExGBronze, ExJBronze, ExSnBronze, MSCDC, VBA, EAC, O-TN-E, ECC, TG-O, OJC, HP-O, WV-N, NVA, CGC, CGN, CRTX, SD-A, SOG, AWCA-AOM-III, CCA-VX, 2010 CCA-MVC.
As we tell you about Zephyr, note that the titles/placements refer to Canadian titles/placements unless otherwise stated.
Zephyr earned more than 100 titles with numerous High In Trials & Reserve High In Trials along the way. He competed in conformation, herding, agility, obedience, carting/drafting and rally both in Canada and the US, and in his senior years, in scent detection work in Canada. In 2005, Zephyr was ranked the #1 Smooth Collie in Conformation, and in herding, he was ranked in the top 6 All-Breeds in both CKC Arena & Stock Dog in the years 2008, 2009, and 2011. He was also ranked the #1 Smooth Collie in Canada in Agility, Obedience, and Rally.
At the 2010 and 2012 BC/Yukon Regional Agility Championships, Zephyr placed third and fourth on the podium, respectively, and was on the podium again at the Canadian National Agility Championships in 2010. That same year, he won the “Most Versatile Collie” award after competing in herding, agility, rally & conformation at the 2010 Collie Club of America National.
Zephyr is one of only three Collies to have earned the American Working Collie Association’s GVCh (Grand Versatility Championship), and was the first Collie (Rough/Smooth) to earn a HChA (Herding Champion Arena, DCh (Duel Champion, and HX (the Herding Excellent which requires ten herding Advanced scores of 85 or more) titles as well as SDS, SDI & SDA (Stock Dog Started, Intermediate & Advanced) titles.
He was the first Smooth Collie to earn a DD (Draft Dog), HS, HI, HA (Herding Arena Started, Intermediate & Advanced) and AgNJ and AgIJ (Agility Novice & Intermediate Jumpers with weaves) titles, and was the second Smooth Collie to earn a SD-A (Scent Detection Advanced) title. He earned his last title – ABC Games SOG (Single Odour Games) title at the age of twelve and a half.
Our dogs never, ever live long enough, and Zephyr left his earthly constraints behind this past February at the age of fifteen. He packed a lot of accomplishments into his life, but his owner and handler, Marilyn Clayton, remembers him as a kind, confident, powerful, common-sense, trusted, calm and respectful dog. Zephyr got along with all beings, and even the grouchiest bitches that hated intact males loved him. The only things Zephyr loved more than working were cats, Starbucks Ginger Molasses Cookies, A&W French Fries, and Marilyn. He was her best friend, an amazing traveling companion, and her protector for almost 15 years. Through him, she was able to participate in new sports, see new places, and make many new friends. Though he was chosen for his temperament, soundness, and for the long-lived, healthy Collies in his pedigree, he ended his life as an ambassador for his breed, and for purebred dogs.
If your dog has proved that he or she is not just another pretty face by having excelled in both conformation and other disciplines, we want to hear about it. Send your over-achiever’s “resume” and photograph to us here. To see the other “pretty faces,” do a site search on, “Not Just Another Pretty Face.”
Profile image of Zephyr by J.Stannard