For those of you who love Crufts will most likely remember 2014 for the Samoyed ‘Dan the Man’ (winner of Reserve Best in Show) who stole many people’s hearts for his loving character and showmanship! We gave the team behind Dan (Ch Nikara Diamond Dancer) the 10 Questions treatment to get to know them, dog shows and hear more about their love of Dorwest and its products. Meet, Sue Smith, Val Freer and Barbara Johnson!
Q1. As a team what breed(s) of dogs do you have?
Samoyeds (Sue also owns Alaskan Malamutes) we have 10 Samoyeds between us!
Q2. What is your team’s most memorable experience of dog showing?
For us all it has to be winning RBIS at Crufts with Dan in 2014
Q3. How long have you used Dorwest products for?
We have been using Dorwest products for over 30 years!
Q4. How long have you been showing dogs and what made you start?
As a team we have been showing dogs for a combined total of over 80 years! Val and Barbara have always had Samoyeds but Sue originally started off with Alaskan Malamutes and still has them to this day. Sue’s first experience of an Alaskan Malamute was when she use to work in a takeaway many years ago, she fed this ‘fluffy’ dog a sausage and her love of them instantly took! Val attended a local dog show back in 1977, and instantly fell in love with Samoyeds. Later that year she got her first puppy and never looked back.
Q5. Which Dorwest products have you used?
Dorwest has such a fantastic range of herbal products we have probably used most of them over the years. But notably we’ve all used Keepers Mix to keep our dogs in the best condition. And most commonly we have used Garlic & Fenugreek, Kelp Seaweed and Elderberry & Nettle, which is an essential in England! Winter noses often set in as we don’t get enough sun!
We always enjoy our days out at the shows, and have some great laughs together. I do remember Sue last year when we fixed her up with a new show outfit to wear at the World Challenge in Amsterdam, which we were so honored to represent the UK at. But as always, we had a big laugh when Sue’s underskirt kept riding up as she ran around the ring, until in the end it sat around her waist and made her look a very odd shape! The look on her face was a picture! Sue quickly took it off in between a class and still isn’t quite sure where it went! Another notable incident was on a ferry to Belfast when Val and Barbara were arguing who was going to sleep on the top bunk. Barbara lost the argument and it ended up being a rocky crossing! Not long later Barbara fell from the top bunk!
Q7. Which Dorwest product could you never do without?
Keepers Mix! Every dog should be on it! It is the one product that you can give to all your dogs for all round nutrition to ensure they have the best diet.
Q8. The world of dogs has many memorable and ground breaking people – is there anyone that was an inspiration to you in the beginning?
When Val first started in Samoyeds there were Derek & Thelma Ponts and Ileane Danvers (Fairvilla) both of whom were very successful in Samoyeds and offered advice and support to both Val and other new Samoyed exhibitors in the early 1970’s.
Q9. Why do you always come back to Dorwest?
We know that for any problem we have with our dogs, Dorwest can help. They always offer sound advice and their products are at a good price. We would always prefer herbal medicines as the first form of treatment.
Q10. If you could describe Dorwest up in three words what would they be?
Trustworthy, Quality, Service