Name: Beth Hilborn
Where you live: Courtenay, BC
Your breed: Toy Poodles have my heart but Crested & Chihuahuas are close seconds.
Official Show Photographer: DogShots Photography
1) The best advice you could give to a new person just beginning, would be what?
You need two friends – a mentor within your breed – someone known for producing quality dogs on a consistent basis, and someone who is positive, who is well grounded, and not in your breed, so you get a different perspective – someone who will help you when needed and support your decisions. And, arrive first thing, and don’t leave until after Best in Show. Watch, learn and listen!
2) Who was your mentor in dogs?
Everyone that has ever talked to me about their breed has been a mentor. Everyone that allowed me (or didn’t realize I was) to watch what they did from a distance. To name people, Marion Postgate & Elsie Murray both gave me timeless advice when I was in Juniors, and that advice has stuck with me over the years.
3) If you could make one wish for the sport and for purebred dogs, what would it be?
That we’d realize that we are our own worst enemy more often than not. I no longer see the camaraderie that I remember from years ago, and I wish that would magically come back.
4) Name a dog show friend that you would take on “Survivor” with you, and why?
Mike McDonald – that guy can fix ANYTHING!!!! Plus, he’s super well- grounded and has an abundance of common sense.
5) What do you miss at today’s shows, versus those of the past?
The after-show parties & dinners – Alberni and Mission Kennel Clubs had the best!
6) Your favourite dog show anywhere in the world to attend is, and why?
While the atmosphere at the Garden (pre-piers) was electric and exciting, I haven’t had the chance to attend a show outside of North America, so my experience is too limited to say. Crufts, however, is on the bucket list.
7) Your favourite way to relax is?
Dinner, with good friends and a nice glass of wine. Or, a solitary walk in the woods in the late spring.
8) Which judge no longer alive or judging, do you miss the most?
I miss a lot of them for many different reasons, but Anne Rogers-Clark is at the top of the list.
9) Name a dog of the past which gave you goosebumps?
There are many – but if I have to name just one – Afghan Hound Ch. Triumph of Grandeur – truly exciting dog standing and moving – the essence of style and type.
10) If you could sit down for the first time, and have a conversation with any dog person still active, who would it be?
Wow – so many people I would love to have an in-depth conversation with! I’m thinking that Pamela Bruce is someone I would like to talk to for the first time.