Post image for National Purebred Dog Day: What Did it Mean?

A funny thing happened last week.

A holiday that didn’t exist a year ago was celebrated by dog owners across the world from Mongolia to New York and points in between.  National Purebred Dog Day was conceived in the corner of a coffee shop, initially out of surprise at the discovery that no day had ever been set aside to mark the inestimable contribution of purebred dogs.  National Mutt Day, National Dog Day, National Puppy Day, National Rescue Day, National Service Dog Day – even National Poop Scooping Day – these are all verifiable days of recognition named for the dogs they honor. How was it possible that purebred dogs had been forgotten?

Piggy-backing on surprise, however, was anger borne of frustration. As purebred dog owners, fanciers and ethical breeders, we’ve been omitted from the national conversation about responsible dog ownership for at least fifteen years.  Inaccurately portrayed by a radical animal rights movement seeking to end pet ownership, we’ve been vilified by rigid rescue dog proponents, and misunderstood by a largely uninformed public that continues to donate millions of dollars to the Humane Society of the United States, and buys into, “Adopt, don’t shop, or a shelter dog dies,” and, “There’s no such thing as a good breeder” (PETA) propaganda.  If you doubt this, ask a purebred dog owner about the dead silence that often follows after they’ve informed someone that their dog was purchased from a breeder.

I created National Purebred Dog Day not to diminish mixed breeds, but to celebrate purebred dogs and restore balance to the dialogue by giving their owners a voice. Ultimately, the crux of the issue as I saw it – and still do –  is about having the freedom to choose the dog that’s the best fit for our lives, and to enjoy our dogs without guilt trips or recriminations from those who think all pets should be re-homed shelter dogs. For some, a loveable mutt is perfect, but for others, the predictability of a purebred dog is the better choice. In the end, all dogs benefit when whatever they are is a good match with their owners. 

Designating a specific date to mark an occasion is a dicey proposition, and when that day, May 1st, rolled around last week, I ran errands, cleaned a bathroom, redeemed a gift coupon for a massage, and kept tabs on the Facebook page from an emotionally distant perspective. The first National Purebred Dog Day was not unlike throwing a party and hoping someone would show up. I’m not unfamiliar with humiliating myself. I just didn’t want to do it in front of 18,000 witnesses.

There was no advertising about the first National Purebred Dog Day. A few tweets were put out on Twitter, downloadable links to print “I (heart) Purebred Dogs” were  posted on Facebook, and other than the Facebook page itself, information about the day was entirely by word-of-mouth. Now that the day is in the rearview mirror, what does the data say about it? 

  • On the morning of May 1, the National Purebred Dog Day Facebook page had approximately 17,100 fans, give or take.  By the end of the day, the page had “reached” 88,500 people;
  • As astounding 16,900 people reached “clicked,” “liked,” commented on or shared a post, something social media strategists called “engagement;” Now a few days later, that number continues to grow;
  • On May 1, 27,700 people “liked” the page on Facebook.

There’s more.

At mid-day of May 1st, the AKC placed a post noting National Purebred Dog Day on their Facebook page. I later learned that they had waited until they knew their audience was at its peak viewership to post the notice (thank you, AKC!).  Chris Walker from the AKC was kind enough to share with me the AKC’s internal numbers from that post:

It was the highest engaged post of last week on Twitter with hundreds of images being sent to the AKC. On Facebook, the numbers were as follows:

  • 1,028,096 people were reached;
  • There were 74,340 likes, comments & shares;
  • 60,792 “Likes;’
  • 39,968 On Post
  • 20,824 On Shares
  • 5,891 Comments
  • Post Clicks 10,711

Imagine. Over a million people expressed interest in a day that didn’t exist six months ago. Tweets were retweeted, posts were shared, and friends told other friends. The “significance” of the day gained momentum as the day went on.  At least ten national columnists “picked up” the story and wrote about it, including a psychologist who posted on Psychology Today online. An on-line website of national holidays even listed May 1st as National Purebred Dog Day (alongside Chocolate Parfait Day!!!)

Screen Shot 2014-05-04 at 8.42.14 PM

And then, of course, there appeared on my windshield proof positive of the day’s impact: An anonymous note!

IMG_2365

As far as I was concerned, however, the real story of National Purebred Dog Day wasn’t found in statistics or tweets. It was found in the enthusiasm with which people embraced the day.  It was in the pictures they posted on the Facebook page and in the comments they wrote about their dogs.  Owners whose dogs held impressive AKC records showed up, and so did people whose dogs rarely left the backyard. Kind souls who rescued refugees from horrific substandard breeders wrote to support National Purebred Dog Day because, as one owner put it, “An ethical breeder would never have bred a dog with lethal genes” resulting in the deaf and nearly blind dog she now loves.

In a day already filled with enthusiasm, support and good cheer, there was a one thing (a “high water mark,” if you will)  that especially caught my attention and made me think, “Wow.” A person I don’t think I’ve ever met wrote a response to the Canadian Kennel Club’s Facebook notice about mixed-breed and unrecognized-breed dogs being allowed to compete in performance trials.  Her response appears below (her name smudged to protect her privacy):

Her name has been smudged to protect her privacy

She wrote with such conviction that she might as well have written, “Seriously? You post this today? Did you know that today is Thanksgiving?”  She wrote the way someone writes about an accepted and beloved holiday, one that will come around again.

I’m left but with one conclusion. Purebred dog owners have been waiting a very long time to rally around something that supports them.

The success of the day belongs to every person who friended the NPDD page, tweeted on Twitter or posted on Facebook, and who used May 1st to share a picture or make a comment about their purebred dog.  The heavy lifting was done by the people who wrote their signs and gamely stood with it and their dogs in front of a camera to record the moment they showed the world, “I’m mad as hell and I’m not going to take it anymore. I love purebred dogs.”

Poignant, fabulous, funny and imaginative photographs of purebred dogs were shared on the Internet on May 1st, but if there was one picture that encapsulated up the pent up sentiment of purebred dog fanciers, it was this one:

They gathered their purebred dogs and stood outside PETA headquarters

They gathered their purebred dogs and stood outside PETA headquarters

People have been congratulating me, asking if I’m thrilled at the success of the day. Certainly, I’m gratified (and relieved).  I “threw a party” and people showed up. Any notions I might have of erupting with unbridled joy at having provided a spark for a grassroots movement, however, are tempered with a couple of observations:

  • The “opposition” never saw this coming. Except for a few tired and lame charges of “canine racism” on Twitter, the animal rights and shelter zealots were unprepared to counter the tsunami of joyful purebred dog pictures that appeared on Twitter and Facebook. Next year, they’ll be ready. Will we be as enthusiastic if faced with an onslaught of criticism and negativity?
  • In most successful grassroots movements, energy starts at the bottom and percolates upwards –  or it dies. On May 1, 2014,  we saw the “every person” accept National Purebred Dog Day as their own, people in the “trenches:” The pet owners, groomers, rescue volunteers, foster homes, kennel owners, exhibiters, club members and anyone who ever loved a purebred dog in the quietness of their daily lives.  Next year, will the upper echelon of the dog fancy recognize, let alone embrace National Purebred Dog Day? Will we see professional handlers, judges, high ranking club officials and the “money people” pose with people holding, “I (heart) Purebred Dog” signs because those of us who pay the entry fees, breed or buy the dogs, register and train them insist on it?  Can we effect influence by virtue of our need for this day to succeed?

I don’t know the answer. I’ll keep doing what I’ve been doing because it helps me sleep at night. The question is: What will everyone else do?

 

{ 54 comments… read them below or add one }

Charlee May 7, 2014 at 1:11 pm

Soose, where you lead, I will follow in this. You have a gift for reaching, and more for inspiring. Who else could have gotten people to take their Purebreds and stand in front of PETA with a sign? NOT to diminish the courage and creativity of those who did that, I salute THEM as well, but my point is the inspiration! Will the AR be ready next year? Maybe………But ya know what? We’ve gotten a successful taste ourselves. We’ve got stats, we’ve got other good stuff, again thanks to you, and what’s more, we’ve got the fact that most of us are sick to tears of being pushed around, run over, and painted as the blackest villians. You’ve offered us a way to fight back. I think most of us WILL take that chance again next year. Love ya, dear lady, and what’s more, stand in awe of your abilities and your talents. DAMN glad you’re on OUR side!!!

Reply

Susi May 7, 2014 at 1:25 pm

Charlee, as always, you know EXACTLY what to say! I don’t see myself as a leader, let alone an inspiring force (the nuns especially would have something to say about that, back in the day) but I’m delighted to have a hand in anything that brings reason and fairness to the table on an issue as important at this one. Honestly, I think there’s more at stake here than dog, and it’s nothing short of freedom to choose. We all despise substandard breeders and cruel owners, and regard animal hoarding as a serious problem. None of those things are the fault of the loving, responsible and ethical people who live, work with and love their dogs. And here I go again…..sigh. If there’s anything I hope for the most, it’s for folks to start feeling empowered by what one person can do. If we join forces, we’ll be unstoppable.

Reply

Angela May 7, 2014 at 1:16 pm

It was fun to be part of this day!!! I’m on board for next year!

Reply

Susi May 7, 2014 at 1:19 pm

I’m counting on it, Angela! I have plans already!!

Reply

Lenore Dickinson May 7, 2014 at 1:48 pm

Susi — as Charlee said, where you lead, I will follow. If you need anything to continue to promote this, to celebrate next year, etc., I’m on board. This is a long time coming and I think it is what is needed to finally get the fancy to join together and face the common opponent — the A/R activists, PETA and HSUS. Feel free to consider me one of the committed troops.

Reply

Susi May 7, 2014 at 2:05 pm

I’m honored, Lenore. Also gobsmacked, delighted, shocked, floored and “twitter patted.” I do have ideas on what I’d like to see happen next, but there are logistical problems I need to figure out……I think we need to follow this occasion up rather soon with a visible charitable event, in my mind, collecting funds for canine cancer. Still thinking it out….

Reply

Vickie May 7, 2014 at 1:56 pm

Proud to have been a participant of the first annual NPDD! As I’m readying for a local pet expo, am wondering if NPDD could kick off a month-long celebration of the purebred dog and those who share their lives with these amazong canines. Perhaps?

Reply

Susi May 7, 2014 at 2:02 pm

Lol, Vickie, I LOVE your enthusiasm, and wonder what would be left of me after a month like last week! Still, it’s an idea worth considering. I have many ideas, and one of them is that we need to do something rather soon to follow up the first NPDDay. Something visible and involving collecting funds for canine cancer. Lots to consider with that one…..let’s talk.

Reply

Vickie May 7, 2014 at 2:07 pm

I suggested a month-long celebration for the following reasons …
* weather is getting nice so lots of folks are out/about with their dogs;
* breed and all-breed show clubs are getting started on their season;
* instead of just one day, there would be a month to work activities in, depending on schedules and locale.

Reply

Susi May 7, 2014 at 6:09 pm

I love your ideas, Vickie. Here’s what I’m thinking. Individuals and clubs should be thinking/planning now for next May 1, but there needs to be consistency and continuity across the board and whatever the activity, it should be done under the “banner” of National Purebred Dog Day. I believe that something visible should be done within the next few months that gives visibility to purebred dogs in a charitable setting, and I’d love to see on-the-street collections being done for canine cancer which affects all dogs across the board. It shows us as caring about all dogs based on their common species, not their breed (or lack of). This will take some logistically planning and it’s possible that I’ll only be able to do it on a test case in one state (or not at all) – this one takes thinking. And finally, my concern about protracting this for a month is fatigue. People get sick of anything that lasts too long. For one day, most people can muster up a lot of enthusiasm, and I’m thinking now in particular of pet owners and people outside the fancy. By all means, however, I do agree that if clubs want to mark the day, it begins now.

Reply

Paula May 12, 2014 at 1:32 pm

How about National Purebred Dog Week instead of month? Thank you thank you for instigating this! LOL! I am going to bring it up at my next kennel club meeting and see if we can’t do something for it next year. Especially if we come up with some kind of canine charity to include. Maybe we can all get information on CHF to pass out and how much work they do to help us breed healthier dogs. Not exactly sure where to obtain such an article, but information indicating how purebred dogs are used in researching diseases that affect humans too.

Reply

Susi May 13, 2014 at 2:31 pm

Thank you for the kind words, Paula! I have many ideas for future activities but some of them required almost a hands-across-the-nation effort as well as some legal considerations to be sorted out. I’m afraid a National Purebred Dog week instead of a month would not only wear me out, but cause “holiday fatigue” in people who can’t sustain that level of activity for 7 days! Still, I love that you’re thinking about it. Many heads are better than one, right?

Reply

Bev May 7, 2014 at 3:39 pm

Susi,
To blatantly copy the others…where you lead I will follow. But not only will I follow but I will continue to teach my children about not only the importance to choose which dog fits peoples lives but also the importance of being proud to own, exhibit, breed and love pure bred dogs. I will continue to teach them how to fill that “silence” others have when they mention they have pure bred dogs with education and tolerance.

Everywhere I looked on FB on May 1st I saw people celebrating NPDD. If we keep moving forward we can make a difference. While the AR people have money, we have true passion. We won’t let this die!

Reply

Susi May 7, 2014 at 3:52 pm

I very much appreciate the vote of confidence, Bev, I really do. And I think you speak very wise words when you say that what we lack in money, we make up in passion. I don’t doubt the “other” side is passionate about their cause, but what they fail to understand is that we as purebred dog owners have been rescuing our own (as well as cast-offs and other lost little souls) in our private lives and through our breed clubs long before it became a national trend. I believe this is just the beginning and only potential lies ahead.

Reply

Miranda May 7, 2014 at 4:16 pm

It’s like I’ve said before, I’m thrilled how successful the first ever National Purebred Dog Day was and I’m glad to be able to have participated. Like Charlee said, where you lead I will follow in this. Maybe next year I can talk to the kennel club that I’m a member of and we can try to figure something out to do to celebrate, even if it’s just getting everyone together for a group photo. Nobody in the club has the same breed so it would be a representation of several different breeds. Anyway, thanks for all that you’ve done and may NPDD continue to get bigger and better. :)

Reply

Cathy May 7, 2014 at 4:53 pm

Others have already said so much better than I can – but I am happy to follow where you lead with such enthusiasm and eloquence. One of the wonderful things for the day and the FB page for me is to know that I’m NOT alone – I’m not the only one feeling trodden upon by the activists who want the world to think that we’re all greedy and evil with no thought or concern of the animals involved. Nothing could be further from the truth. We’ve stayed silent too long trying to take the high road and in the process, let the activists push their message through loud and clear. After all, if we’re silent they must be right, right? I’m thrilled that it went over so well and that we caught the other side off guard. Maybe they’ll be better prepared next year but so will we with another year to keep getting our message out – that we are responsible and we CARE about our dogs without hating their mutts. But I will keep repeating until the day I die that there is absolutely NOTHING wrong with a person/family wanting a puppy that will grow up to an expected size with an expected coat and expected temperament. Only a purebred will give them that – no mixed breed from the local shelter that has NO idea what might even be in the mix will be able to. Not to mention the shelter doesn’t care if that dog is the right match – they just want to say they’ve adopted out another dog. Meanwhile we’re turning people away because we don’t believe they will be suitable match for the family while supporting our breed rescue that helps clean up the mess created by irresponsible breeders. I applaud your efforts and will continue to support and follow.

Reply

Susi May 7, 2014 at 5:41 pm

Well THANKS, Cathy. You’ve pretty much just created an ad for the day. There isn’t a thing I could add other than that you are NOT alone. We need to stress that our love of purebred dogs does NOT diminish the value of mixed breeds for the right family; it does come down to choices, and if the “other” side quibbles with this, then they need to be challenged. They need to be asked, for example, if they support a woman’s right to choose. If the answer is a qualified “yes,” but that dogs don’t die as a result, they’re going to look pretty foolish as they realize what they’ve just said. If they say no, they need to be asked if someone picked out their dog FOR them. As I see it, there are traps that can be laid that challenge the way these folks see the world. I appreciate the support, Cathy.

Reply

Cathy May 7, 2014 at 6:37 pm

I’m always happy to provide the perfect example. My mom was devastated when she lost her Frenchie (right after my dad died on top of that) and I couldn’t find her another one at a reasonable price (they’d just shot up in popularity along with the cost and all she wanted was another to watch tv with her and sleep on her bed). Anyway, with my encouragement (and what to avoid) she went to the local shelter to look for a puppy. She came home with the cutest little blue merle you’ve ever seen. They told her she’d be about 35 lbs full grown and was half Aussie. Well, Phoebe finally stopped growing when she hit 70 lbs and was the size and had the looks of a smooth collie. Looking at her build and ears, she probably was half Border Collie and half Blue Healer since she had that hard dense coat they have along with the ears. I’m pretty sure there was no Australian Shepherd in her. Fortunately, my mom had a house with a large yard and could afford to take her to obedience class and to feed her. If she’d been in something like Senior living or your average apartment she would have been taking her back to the shelter or finding a new home for her because she was MUCH larger than most of those types of places would allow. And it wouldn’t have been her fault because she told them what she wanted – a calm medium sized dog that could go on her two mile walks with her and basically be a spoiled rotten house dog the rest of the time. The only thing they got right was that she did like to sit on the couch and watch television with her and sleep on her bed.

Reply

Susi May 7, 2014 at 9:10 pm

LOL, Cathy, a great “teachable story” at your mom’s expense that happily ended well. The story tells it all.

Reply

Alyssa Jones May 7, 2014 at 5:18 pm

Man, I hate hearing about awesomeness like this after it happens. I’m marking my calendar for next year.

Reply

Susi May 7, 2014 at 5:33 pm

LOL, Alyssa, look at it this way, next year you’ll be ROCKING the day with enthusiasm. Welcome aboard!

Reply

Jinnie May 7, 2014 at 5:24 pm

Susi this made me cry, I am so proud we were part of NPDD but now we need to take it up a notch

Reply

Susi May 7, 2014 at 5:34 pm

Awwwww, Jinnie, don’t cry, be happy! But I agree, we DO need to take it up a notch and I have an idea that in my gut I know is the right thing to do. It’s the logistics that trip me up.

Reply

Arrogant Afghan Hound May 7, 2014 at 6:18 pm

I hate that my scholastic preoccupations and issues lately caused me to miss this. Because OMG THIS IS AMAZING.

May 1st as NPDD is BRILLIANT. I’m already planning a party for next year!!!!!

Reply

Susi May 7, 2014 at 9:11 pm

Arrogant Afghan Hound, I appreciate the kind words, your continued support on the NPDD page (I do notice!) but not to worry. We need our side to be educated and well rounded, so continue to pursue those scholastic endeavors. No one can take away what’s stuffed in your brain. As for that party next year – one word: PICTURES!

Reply

Anne Goetz May 7, 2014 at 7:06 pm

Wow, Susi!
Let me say with all the others, please….
THANK YOU!!!!
I have followed your blog, LOOOOVED The National Purebred Dog Day page, and May 1st was a glorious day!
I’m in North Carolina with several purebred dog fans; with Neapolitan and Spanish Mastiffs! (Yes, I have gotten the fantabulous Mastin Espanol into the AKC FSS!!! We are working on our breed club and hope to join the Purebred World of the Dog Fancy here in the USA very soon!!
We have great friends, here, in NC with the Bloodhound…
We are on board with however and whatever we can do to help!!

Reply

Susi May 7, 2014 at 8:47 pm

Thank YOU, Anne. The kind words are sustenance to me, and your enthusiasm counts a great deal for the future. I think we puts our collective heads together and consider how best to proceed forward using the “other” side’s own tactics against them. We talk about choice. We talk about diversity. We use data only as backup, but stick to the truth which is that the best way to have a dog avoid becoming a “rescue” to make sure they’re a good fit to begin with, and for some folks, that’s a predictable purebred dog. No doubt “they” will find ways to outsmart us, and I have no answer for that other than that the truth will set us free. As for the Spanish Mastiff – we need to talk!

Reply

Tracy May 7, 2014 at 7:33 pm

You are a treasure, Susi! Well done. It is useful to question the future, but I know in my bones it will be a bright one….as in, an “enlightenment”! :)

Reply

Susi May 7, 2014 at 8:42 pm

Awwww, Tracy, you’re too kind. I hope you’re right about the future. I guess it’s my “job” to consider “what if” scenarios. For now – cookies all around!

Reply

Jen May 7, 2014 at 9:58 pm

You done good my friend! I’m so glad that I was able to participate in this day Susi! Thank you for letting me know! I had such a great time promoting it and loved seeing the awesome response that it got and all of the people embracing it! I was in such a good mood that day and my husband was wondering why. I simply told him, “It’s National Purebred Dog Day! Finally!”

I’m looking forward to next year!

Reply

Susi May 7, 2014 at 11:44 pm

Awww, Jen, I can’t tell you what a comfort it was to me to know I could reach out to you and you would be there. I knew I could count on you to mention the day, and it was no small thing that your vast readership saw what you’d written. Thank you, my friend. I miss our time together, but perhaps Eukanuba might bring us together just one more time?

Take care of those loveable slobbering masses of love, eh? Thank you again!!

Reply

Nancy Kalish May 7, 2014 at 10:43 pm

Susi,
I am the psychologist who posted on psychologytoday.com. I did not bash rescuers; I said it’s a personal choice.

But that’s not okay to rescue fanatics. I’m sure you saw that my “colleague” then linked his blog to mine and posted his “rebuttal,” sharing his narrow view of morality. He could have simply written an article on his blog, but no, he felt compelled to advertise on my post and then criticize me. When some purebred dog owners posted on his article, he closed comments. I was shocked at his behavior. So okay, then, after very personal attacks (which I deleted), I closed my comments today, too.

I also posted my article on my personal blog, briard-adventures.com, and on Chou Chou Briard’s FB page.

Thank you for giving me an excuse to write this article! The anger and self-righteousness of the rescue police has bothered me for some time. It’s good that breeders and people who buy from responsible breeders came out of the closet and risked the blowback.

THANK YOU for giving us National Purebred Dog Day! You made a difference!

Reply

Susi May 7, 2014 at 11:13 pm

I’m delighted (and honored) to hear from you, Nancy. I found no fault in what you wrote and agree with you, but I wasn’t surprised that “your colleague” took issue with the substance of your article. Those who read his weak rebuttal had a few choice words for his point of view, as you know, and the fact that he closed his comments after so short a time was highly revealing of his position. He and his ilk seem better at leveling charges than in participating in a reasonable discourse. I wonder if he recognizes how weak this makes his position appear.

Time will be the true measure of the success of the new “holiday,” and next year should tell us a lot, both in our own level of engagement, what the “opposition” has in store for us, and how we choose to respond. If I’ve done nothing else, I would like to think that I’ve shown that one measly person can start a wave. Now, to create a ripple effect!

I very much appreciate hearing from you, Nancy. I’m tickled to have given you an excuse (as if you really needed it) for an excellent article. Let’s continue to egg each other on, eh?

Reply

Didi May 8, 2014 at 3:06 pm

There is a National Dog Week started in 1928 in September so we can celebrate again pretty soon. There is a National Puppy Day, A May Day for Mutts and National Dog Day in August that all center around adopting from shelters without the 86 year history.
http://www.examiner.com/article/kick-off-to-national-dog-week

Reply

Susi May 9, 2014 at 5:57 pm

I think I’m missing something, Didi. I’m well aware of the “holidays” for dogs which is why I started National Purebred Dog Day: one didn’t exist!

Reply

Anne Goetz May 10, 2014 at 3:29 am

Nothing I like to do better, than to talk dogs…. Especially, my dogs, lol.
The Spanish is a wonderful dog.
I’m still learning about them, and will always want them in my life. However, this is not the dog for everyone. You are very correct, every dog is a good fit for someone, but, not for everyone!!

Reply

Paula May 12, 2014 at 1:43 pm

I am thinking we may be seeing Spanish Mastiffs on the NPDD FB page soon! I love the breed of the week feature, have always loved learning about other breeds. Looking forward to learning about your dogs, Anne! (The Bull Terrier week was incredible and loads of fun! Thanks Susi!)

Reply

Susi May 13, 2014 at 2:29 pm

You would be right, Paula, and I’m pretty darn excited to learn about a breed I know so little about. The Purebred of Interest is always popular, I’m learning, and I love offering it because I learn so much, too! Thank you for writing!

Danna May 8, 2014 at 3:35 pm

I have the best of both worlds. My husband & I adopted two pure bred Boston Terriers. One from the vet (who found him outside his back door one horribly cold Winter day) & the other, a female who was rescued from a puppy mill. We love the Boston Terrier breed & would have bought the dogs, had the rescue dogs not been available. This way, we have our pure bred dogs but also helped out another cause. I love the idea of a NPBDD. I think it is extremely important to match the dog with the owner. In our case, I think someone bought a Boston not knowing the temperament of the dogs & gave up & left him at the vet’s office for adoption rather than call the pound. We were both lucky to have found each other because we absolutely love Boston’s & know what to expect from them & how to train them to be good dogs to have around. We had no qualms about adopting our female dog from the rescue team because, again, we knew what we were getting. She was 5 1/2 yrs old but she has already given us almost 5 yrs of joy. I wish there were a way to force people to study the characteristics & temperament of each breed before they buy from the breeder. That would have prevented our male dog from being dropped at the vet’s office. There is a dog for everyone that matches exactly what they need if only they would take the time to look.

Reply

Susi May 9, 2014 at 6:03 pm

I agree, Danna. Every dog has a perfect owner out there as long as the owners have a realistic expectation of the dog. I knew of an older couple, very sedate, who were considering a Border Collie. Oh my goodness, I told them, this is SO NOT the breed for your lifestyle. It would have been a disaster, and I would have bet odds that the dog would have ended up in a shelter for being “unmanageable.” You did indeed get the best of both worlds as long as it worked out for you, and it sure sounds like it has!! Thank you for reading the article and leaving a comment here!

Reply

Sharyn Hutchens May 10, 2014 at 9:28 am

Oh, Sooz, as usual, I am ten days late and ten dollars short! Unfortunately, NPDD came on the heels of our national, about the only time of the year I am simply Off the Computer. Has nothing to do with the national, really, just the exhaustion of it and the first few days following it. How is it that the stuff you took to the national no longer fits In the same van you came in? Next year I will think ahead (ha!) and be ready for it. (And no, we didn’t do squat at the national. Tiger Lily decided the design on the ballroom carpet was a grate with zombies underneath, so she concentrated on high-stepping her way around the room like a hackney pony. At least she and the several others who agreed with her about the zombies provided comic relief) Anyway, next year Tiger will do something much more,useful and help me get out to celebrate NPDD. Congratulations on such a huge success! Can Google’s homepage be far behind?

Reply

Susi May 11, 2014 at 5:05 am

Gasp. MY dog also encountered mat zombies at our National Specialty and worked her way out of Winner’s Bitch. Sharyn, hon, next year, then!!

Reply

Min Lacey May 10, 2014 at 5:12 pm

Hi from the UK – why not make it International Purebred Dog Day?

Reply

Susi May 11, 2014 at 5:04 am

It’s worth a thought, Min Lacey, but my first thought is wondering if I could do justice to dogs reared, re-homed,and/or judged in systems with which I’m not more familiar…..

Reply

Guadalupe Rivera May 11, 2014 at 1:13 pm

Hi. Love the facebook page and blog. I’m from Mexico and you do have a lot of international followers. If International Purebred Dog Day is something you do not feel comfortable with, perhaps just ¨Purerbred dog day¨?
Animal rights activists certainly do not limit themselves to one country…
Either way, thank you for doing this and gathering us all to fight together for our right to own whatever dog we choose.
If you ever decide to go beyond the borders, you will find many, many supporters too :)

Reply

TS aka Chuck May 11, 2014 at 3:19 pm

Just read your article and many congratulations on NPDD! And Dr. Kalish’s article in Psychology Today….what a feather!

As far as next year goes, you write, “Will we see professional handlers, judges, high ranking club officials and the “money people” pose with people holding, “I (heart) Purebred Dog” signs because those of us who pay the entry fees, breed or buy the dogs, register and train them insist on it?”, I don’t know if you will or not. I do know that grassroot efforts can make a difference. I don’t even own a dog anymore and still am interested in dog issues and read your posts. And, because of what you once said, I no longer donate to the HSUS (although I do miss their stickers!) So don’t forget non-dog owners as allies, as well. We want to be included, too.

Reply

Elizabeth May 13, 2014 at 12:53 am

Those of us who love purebred dogs are the silent majority. The more we speak up the more of us who will brave enough to speak up in the future. WE outnumber the extremists and fanatics but most of us are too busy living our lives. Many of the general public who love purebred dogs know NOTHING about the agenda of the animal rights movement to end animal ownership. Expressing our love for our dogs in this day of celebration gives us a way to start educating the public about the TRUTH behind the AR groups. Education NOT Legislation!

Reply

Susi May 13, 2014 at 2:28 pm

You are right, Elizabeth, and like all “silent majorities” we have remained well behaved and quiet for too long. Every encounter is an opportunity to spread the word in a lighthearted but pointed way that dogs are every much a legacy to their country of origin as that country’s art, cuisine, language and costume. I can’t bear the thought of losing these precious dogs. Tell your friends to join the NPDD Facebook page because there IS strength in numbers. Hear us roar!

Reply

Karen Ross May 13, 2014 at 2:09 pm

I am so disappointed I missed it. I fully support and am ready to rally with all of the purebred dog lovers, breeders, owners and fanciers. We cannot let our love of purebred dogs die. I’m ready for next years rally. Let’s keep the movement going.

Reply

Susi May 13, 2014 at 2:25 pm

Not to worry, Karen! I have plans for next year and with the help of all purebred dog lovers and maybe a few organized groups, 2015’s celebration will be even bigger and better! Tell all your friends to join the National Purebred Dog Day page on Facebook!

Reply

Sarah May 14, 2014 at 9:47 am

When someone throws a fabulous party the word gets around and everyone wants to go to the next one. You threw one helluva great party so I don’t think there’s any doubt about the next one. You rock, lady!

Reply

Susi May 20, 2014 at 10:28 am

Sarah, thanks for that!! Fingers crossed that next year’s “party” won’t have “party crashers” since I expect May 1 will be on the radar….

Reply

Gary September 7, 2014 at 6:09 pm

A great initiative but perhaps May 1 is not the best choice from an international perspective as that date is already a major holiday in many countries.

Reply

Susi September 7, 2014 at 6:29 pm

I appreciate the observation, Gary, but when the idea was first conceived, I never had anything but a national scope in mind. Who knew I’d get interest from Mongolia??? The months I avoided were done for a reason. I wanted to avoid American holidays as well as major dog shows(Eukanuba, Westminster, Montgomery); I wanted a month in which activities could take place outside but not be too hot or cold – and that left May. Ultimately, what decided the day was that May 1 is May Day, also known as a distress call. It seemed fitting for a sport and purebred dog ownership that are both in trouble.

Reply

Leave a Comment

Previous post:

Next post: