Maltese Breed Magazine - Top Notch Toys

THE HISTORY OF THE MALTESE

“The Maltese is one of the most difficult breeds to condition, groom, and show, but there is nothing more breathtaking than to see a BEAUTIFUL WHITE CLOUD, GLIDING AROUND THE RING.”

This past decade has produced many, many beautiful Mal- tese—too many to name them all. But some standouts include: CH Divine’s Indecent Desperado, “Bandit,” bred by Angie and Larry Stanberry and owned by Barbara Davis, who was a Multi- BIS/BISS winner and No. 1 Maltese in 2002, and CH Marcris Thrill Of Victory, bred by Joyce Watkins and owned by Tonia Holibaugh and Barbara Davis. “Thriller” won 15 BIS and won the National Specialty in 2004. He was the Top Maltese in 2003 and 2004 and has produced 47 Champions. Another is CH Bhe- Jei’s Pinball Wizard, bred by Bobbie Linden and owned by Tara Martin Rowell. “Tommy” obtained his first BIS at 9 months of age. He went on to win numerous BIS and won the National in 2006. Tommy has produced three National Specialty winners; CH Ta-Jon’s Whose Your Sugar Daddy, CH Ta-Jon’s Pawsitively Silly, and CH Scylla’s Small Kraft Re-Lit—two of whom are also BIS winners. CH Ta-Jon’s Pawsitively Silly, a “Silly” grandson, won the National in 2008 and has produced to date both a Multi- BIS son and daughter. The daughter, GCH Ta-Jon’s Just Bee-ing Silly, “Justine,” won the National in 2011, and the son, CH Pawsi- tively Pawparazzi, “Snapshot,” is also a Multi-BIS winner. In 2007, Richelieu’s Sugar Smacks was the first dog in the his- tory of the AMA to win BOB from the classes. And to finish out the decade, GCH. Rhapsody’s Regarding Henry won the 2010 National Specialty and is a Multi-BIS/BISS dog. He was the #1 Maltese and #15 All-Breed in 2010, and #1 Maltese and #11 All- Breed in 2011. “Henry” was bred by Tonia Holibaugh and is now residing in Australia. Henry is now owned by William Warke and Craig Emerson and is an Australian champion—and has won BIS there. Maltese are not just meant to adorn your lap or compete in the conformation ring. They are a very versatile breed, and the fancy is seeing more and more Maltese compete in Obedience, Rally, and Agility. Watching a small, white dog with hair flow- ing as he “nails” his jump will take one’s breath away. Recently, one standout Maltese, OTCH Mister Rugby Sevens UDX OM1 RN, became the first OTCH Maltese in the history of the breed. “Rugby” was the Number One Toy Dog and High Scoring Mal- tese at AKC’s 2012 National Obedience Invitational where he placed 29th out of 146 entries. Maltese are also excellent therapy dogs. Known for centuries as the “Comforter Dog,” they take their jobs seriously and do them well. Even considering its glam- orous appeal, it has been twenty years since a Maltese has won the Group at Westminster. It has only won the Group five times (twice with the same dog) since records started being kept in 1924. The Maltese is one of the most difficult breeds to condition, groom, and show, but there is nothing more breathtaking than to see a beautiful white cloud, gliding around the ring.

apart, almost on the top of their ears, and many of the heads were more coarse looking. There still were, however, beautiful specimens of the breed to behold. During the 1980s, photographs show how the grooming started to change. The topknots were closer together and the coat care allowed for it to grow out long and flowing. Some of the Maltese that stood out during this time were CH Non-Vels Weejun, who also won the National Specialty and 11 BIS, and the beautiful CH C and M’s Tootsey’s Lolly Pop, bred by Mary Day and Carole Thomas and owned by the breeders and Sherry Lemond Ray. In limited showing, “Lolly” won six BIS, BOB at Westminster twice, and the National Specialty twice, first in 1988 and then from the Veterans Class in 1992. The decade of the ‘90s ushered in many Maltese that made an impact on our breed. It started off with the 25th Anniversary of the American Maltese Association. That year, CH Sand Island Small Kraft Lite, bred and owned by Carol Frances Anderson and shown by Vicki Abbott, won the specialty. “Henry” won the National again the following year, and in his short career obtained an impres- sive 82 BIS and 237 Group Firsts. He was the #1 Toy and #7 All-Breed in 1990 and #1 Toy and #5 All-Breed in 1991. In 1992, Henry became the 4th, and last, Maltese to win the Toy Group at the Garden. In 1995, a relatively unknown breeder attended the National Specialty and won WB, BOW, BBEX and Best in Sweeps with her beautiful bitch, CH. Ta-Jon’s Tickle Me Silly. This spectacular lit- tle bitch burst onto the Maltese show scene and broke all previous records set for the breed. “Silly” was shown by her breeder/owner, Tammy Simon, who had only been in the sport a mere six years when she won several BIS with Silly. In 1996, the duo was observed during a show by Sam and Marion Lawrence. They decided to back Silly’s show career because they saw something very special in this little Maltese. The Lawrence’s, to their credit, backed numerous dogs to BIS wins, but four of their dogs were campaigned to over 100 BIS each. In the two and a half years that Silly was campaigned, she achieved a record 262 Group Firsts, 103 BIS, and two National Specialty wins. She came back four years after being retired and won a third National Specialty as a veteran. She was the #1 Toy and #7 All- Breed in 1997 and the #1 Toy and #4 All-Breed in 1998. Silly is the top-winning Maltese in AKC history and her record will more than likely stand for many years to come. Other notable Maltese of this decade include CH Marcris Ris- qué Business, bred and owned by Joyce Watkins. “Risqué” was a prepotent little male who sired a record 107 Champion get and, as a Top Stud, he refined the heads of many of our Maltese today. Another Maltese is CH Shanlyn’s Rais’n A Raucaus. Bred by Lynda Podgurski and owned by Joseph Joly III, David and Sharon New- comb, and Vicki Abbott, “Scrapper” won the 1994 National and was a Multi-BIS winner.

220 | SHOWSIGHT MAGAZINE, MAY 2022

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