Phil Wildhagen is not a name you see a lot these days, but while I was just getting into Aussies, he was still well-known judge – in fact, he gave me my first best junior handler award! As you’ll hear from the interview, Phil had a vision to unify breed type and do his best to put Aussies on the map – literally. If you’ve got a dog with Flintridge in his or her pedigree, you show your dog, or you live abroad, you likely have the influence of Phil to thank for that.
He was incredibly hard to nail down – flying to local airports with friends, cycling around the area and sharing crumpets each morning, he’s someone who gracefully left the breed when he felt his work was done – but my, my what a lot of work it was.
In this session, we learn about:
- Great historical resource books that Phil helped develop
- The inception of the show program for ASCA
- Wildhagen’s Dutchman of Flintridge, “Dusty,” ASCA’s first champion and early qualifier for Hall of Fame
- The story of the Mexican Kennel Club recognition of Aussies (well before AKC, CKC, or anything else)
- How Canada recognized ASCA as the official parent club of the breed and accepted that the name “Australian Shepherd” was okay to use despite us being an American breed.
Links and sources recommended:
- All About Aussies
- Jeanne Joy Hartnagle-Taylor’s blog
- The Canadian Kennel Club letter – currently unable to find it
- ASCA Yearbooks
- Australian Shepherds of the Mountain West
- Dusty’s Story from Facebook
- More thoughts from Phil
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