‘Perspective’ is not something that we always get enough of in the world of pedigree show dogs and this is especially true for those of us who put most of our efforts into one breed that becomes our all-consuming passion. Against this background it was a special privilege to travel to Surrey last Sunday to hear Pat Sutton give us her stockman’s view on conformation and movement. Pat has so many different experiences to draw upon and this is really what makes the day so extraordinary. She may come from one of the most famous ‘show dog’ families of all time but aside from all her experience in the exhibition of pedigree dogs, she is a horsewoman of considerable note and she still runs a large livery yard. In addition, she has an interest in a wide range of country pursuits, most notably as the first civilian Master of Britain’s oldest drag hunt, the Staff College and Royal Military Academy Sandhurst, a society which now benefits from her chairmanship. Pat is not short of perspective and she was certainly happy to share this in an engaging and interactive session at her home, helped by a large range of equine and canine exhibits.
Tim Hutchings: "If anyone ended the day not knowing a lot more about basic construction in general and forehand conformation in particular then I would be amazed. It was a masterclass in movement and construction, delivered in an accessible manner by someone who clearly knows her subject inside out. Not having attended the first couple of these, I was worried that I had missed my opportunity. Having been to one, I certainly won’t miss out on any that are held in the future and neither should you.
Read Tim Hutching's full report from the event >>