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COMPILED FROM THE
DOGGY people are notoriously dogmatic, and canine types are constantly changing. And the former can sometimes be induced to ventilate their views.
Which reflection suggested the scheme of this book, and the idea of canvassing and placing on record the dog-dogmas of the twentieth century. To this end I addressed some two thousand copies of the following set of questions to as many judges of dogs, owners of prize-winning dogs, dog-breeders, and dog-exhibitors :—
1. Which do you consider the most typical dog and bitch in your breed?
2. Are you satisfied with the type of your breed as it exists to-day? If not, in your opinion, what does it require to improve it?
3. Do you agree with the values of the points as laid down in the Standard of Points? If not, please give your idea of what the point values ought to be.
4. From a dog-lover's point of view what particular delight, satisfaction, fascination, or use do you derive from your particular breed? If you prefer it to other breeds, on what grounds do you "fancy" it?
5. Have you any remarks or suggestions to make about dog shows, dog judging, dog legislation, or kindred subjects?
Over five hundred correspondents responded, mostly with the enthusiasm of the true dog-lover, who likes to see the breed he is interested in discussed; and their contributions form a large portion of the following pages.
Some of the opinions expressed may seem heresies to the orthodox, or to the fancier who believes himself orthodox. But every one has a right to his opinion, and every one who has expressed one in this book is so far qualified to do so as breeding, owning, or judging prize-winning dogs justifies her or him to speak.
With regard to the brief historical description I have compiled for each breed, I have consulted many authorities; but I should like to record my special obligations to Mr. Rawdon Lee, the Nestor of modern writers on the dog, into whose fascinating pages I have seldom dipped for a fact without finding myself detained, a voluntary victim to many folios; and to the late Hugh Dalziel's book, which is a classic in its way. It would be an impertinence on my part to suggest that in this effort to "snap-shot" the twentieth century dog, as he appeared at the opening of it, I had any intention of entering into competition with the high critical authorities who have written the histories of the various breeds scientifically and with exhaustive detail. My work is only critical and authoritative where it reproduces the criticisms of accepted authori