I first saw photographs of Can/Am
Ch Bellcrest Just Watch Me SOM, I was looking at the
most beautiful boxer I had ever seen. I watched his career
with interest and when photos of his children began to appear
I was even more impressed. So, when I began to plan ahead
and needed to think of what I would eventually breed my
Bellringer daughters to, my thoughts turned to Canada.
Thanks to Shirley Bell and Anne Lucas, my
wild idea became reality and I was able to import my very
own 'Texas' son, Filmore.
Filmore was already
winning and he ended 1988 as the Top Winning Boxer Puppy
and Second Top Male in Canada. He
was a multiple BOB winner with
BIS all breeds, three firsts, one second and five fourths
in the group. He was four times Best Puppy in Show and won
six Puppy Groups.
Despite the promise of an incredible adult
show career, Anne packed his suitcase and sent him off to
share my life. In 1989 I flew to Canada to meet both Filmore
and his parents and attend the Boxer Club of Canada Speciality
show. It was love at first sight….not only the dogs but
Canada too! At the show, Filmore, shown as a special, won
an Award of Merit and
puppies from his first litter acquitted themselves very
Quarantine was duly organised but I left
him in Canada until Shirley's bitch, Can Ch Bellcrest Sooner
Bee Me could be bred to him. This proved to be a very good
decision as three champions resulted from that breeding:
Ch Bellcrest Proof of the Pudding
Ch Bellcrest Proud as
Ch Bellcrest Perestroika
After release from quarantine, Filmore moved
in as though he had always lived here. He accepted and in
turn was accepted by the resident males and all lived together
in harmony. The bitches of course adored him!
proved to be an exceptional sire who was dominant (as I'd
hoped) for the virtues which I had seen in his bloodlines.
More importantly, when bred to Bellringer and Eight Bells
daughters, he consistently produced puppies of outstanding
quality. He was not at public stud, as I don't agree that
just any bitch should be bred from and breeding a good dog
to a mediocre bitch defeats the object of improving the
breed. So, despite limited stud use he still sired 7 Canadian
champions, making him a Canadian
Sire of Merit, an Irish Champion who was Boxer
of the Year in Ireland and a Norwegian Champion who was
a BIS winner. In addition he is the proud sire of more than
30 UK first prize winning children. Two of his Canadian
Champion bitches are themselves Dams of Merit and a number
of his grandchildren are already Sires or Dams of Merit
and there is also an American Dam of Merit among his children…..surely
'producing' is what it's all about.
Just six weeks after he died I flew to Canada
to attend the Boxer Club of Canada show and awards dinner
where I was presented with his Sire
of Merit Award. A bittersweet occasion in the
circumstances but something I was so very proud to be able
to do. All this pales into insignificance though, as I will
always remember the most wonderful character who shared
my life, was my constant companion and slept on my bed.
His character and enthusiasm for everything that was asked
of him made him many friends throughout the world. When
he died I was inundated with cards, letters and phone calls
of sympathy and it was only then that I truly realised just
how many lives he touched.
He was a once in a lifetime dog and I remember
him every day when I see so many of his mannerisms in his
children and grandchildren. Sleep well Filmore, you're an
impossible act to follow and set a great standard.
off spring here.
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