Affenpinscher in the Modern Era

Jerry Zalon, who started with the Walhof kennels in the 1950s, founded the Eblon kennels in New York City in the ’70s. He specialized in producing the various colors of Affenpinscher. His breeding program continued into the ’80s with the help of Osmin and Marjorie Montjovier, whose Osmer kennel name is behind many of the dogs in Canada and the US. Their Am. and Can. Ch. Eblon Seal Noir was the top-winning Affenpinscher in 1976. This dog was often shown by Mrs. Jane Forsyth. During the late ’60s Mrs. Zalon and Ms. Montjovier began writing an Affenpinscher periodical named Monkey Shines. This publication continued for only a short time, but it reflected the interest and enthusiasm for the breed.

In Canada, during the 1970s and ’80s, Vicki Garrett-Knill started with the Osmar Affens and added the Hilane bloodlines to produce both fine show and obedience dogs. Her kennel name was Wicksteed. One of her breeding, which was owned by the author, Ch. Wicksteed’s Red Capuchin, was one of the top-producing dams, with seven champions. She was out of Can. Ch. Wicksteed’s Marmoset Rouge bred to Ch. Sharpette’s Tiny Tim. Another of her contributions was in the red and wild boar or belge colors. These colored specimens were of excellent type. Vicki and Carl Knill and their family have moved to Georgia and are no longer active in the breed. Marjorie and David Reynolds continue with these lines in Canada under the prefix Reyson. A red female out of Ch. FMK’s Zulu of Hilane and Wicksteed’s Tekahionwake, Ch. Reyson’s Sunshine Too V Hilane is behind some important and successful show dogs.

In the mid-1960s Mrs. Lillian Brandi, from Hackettstown, New Jersey, began with Affenpinschers from the Walhof kennels and Brandicreek dogs bred by Helen Barbeau. Mrs. Brandi showed her Ch. Walhof Blackberry Brandi to prestigious wins in 1967 and ’68. She was credited with changing the grooming style of the show Affenpinscher by neatening and shaping the outline and reducing the amount of body coat. This new image for the breed gained her notice. Of course controversy ensued and the debate over what is the correct “look” for the breed continues today. Her breeding program continued into the 1980s with a dog that she bred, Ch. Brandicreek Frisky Whisky, who did some nice winning. Frisky Whisky was owned and handled by Howard and Joyce Stadele of Middlesex, New Jersey.

Mrs. Emily Kinsley of Easton, Pennsylvania was another who started her breeding program with dogs from the Harringtons. On June 25, 1966, This Week, the Sunday newspaper supplement, had a photo of Mrs. Kinsley’s puppy, Aff-Airn A Go Go Kins, on its cover. This gave the breed some much-needed publicity. The top-winning Affenpinscher for 1966, owned by Mrs. Kinsley, was Ch. Aff-Airn Wee Winnie Winkie, who also came from the Harringtons. Winkie had her photo in National Geographic. This bitch won Best of Breed at the International Dog Show over an entry of 21, the largest entry for the breed at that time. She was also the second owner-handle Affen to place first in the Toy Group. For the next 25 years Mrs. Kinsley’s Aff-Kin’s line produced many champions and had a positive impact on the breed. Her Can. Ch. Aff-Kin’s Licorice Chewy, owned by Mrs. Lorna (Thompson) Spratt of Winnipeg, Manitoba, Canada, became the first Affenpinscher to win Best in Show in Canada. Later, in 1991, Chewy’s and Ch. Hilane’s Lonesome Cowboy’s son Am. and Can. Ch. Ceterra’s Rock-N-Robbie won a US national Best in Show. Robbie was shown by Mrs. Delores Burkholder, who is at the time of this writing an AKC dog show representative. More recently Robbie’s son Can. Ch. Ceterra’s Billy the Kid joined his grandmother to be the second Affenpinscher to win a Canadian all-breed Best in Show. Another of Rock-N-Robbie’s sons, Ch. Ceterra’s Little Black Sambo, out of Ch. Aff-Kin’s Kischia Frolics, is the sire of several of the top show dogs today. Lorna Spratt and Sherry Galagan continue to breed and exhibit in Canada.

Starting with the Aff-Kin’s Affens, Sue and Don Spahr of Scottsdale, Arizona developed the Su-Dawn line. Their most famous dog was multiple Best in Show and national specialty winner in 1992, Ch. Su-Dawn’s Pee Wee Herman. This great show dog did much for the breed, especially in the West during the early ’90s. Pee Wee’s dam was Ch. Su-Dawn’s Affins Krystal, bred by Emily Kinsley. She became a top producer with eight champions from another of their fine dogs, Ch. Su-Dawn’s Where Thear’s Smoke. Utilizing the Su-Dawn lines, Judith Benjamin also bred Affenpinschers in the Southwest. She owned Ch. Subira’s Whoopie Goldberg, who did very well in the show ring in the early ’90s.

Another important early breeder, Lucille E. Meystedt, who came from Missouri and later moved to Texas, began in Affenpinschers in 1962. Starting with a dog bred by the Kauffmanns named Walhof Hi Quotation and females from Cassel Hills kennel, who also go back to Walhof lines, she kept the breed going in the southern and western parts of the United States through the 1980s. In 1967 she brought in a dog from Germany. This male, Ch. Vinzenz v Greifensee, was the most titled Affenpinscher in the history of the breed. He had his International, German, American, Canadian, Mexican and Colombian championships. Another of her breeding, Ch. Balu’s Arkady Herzchen Katze, who was called “Sugar, ” became the fifth Affenpinscher to earn an all-breed Best in Show. Mary and Bill Wasson and George and Phyllis Willis of Texas owned Sugar.

Mrs. Meystedt’s Balu kennels continued until her death in 1991. In almost 30 years in the breed she had a major influence on the Affenpinscher not only with her breeding program but also through her writing in the magazine Popular Dogs and as an AKC dog show judge. She exported dogs to England, Ireland, Australia and Germany. Lucille Meystedt showed and finished one of the first Affenpinschers with natural ears.

Another Texas exhibitor and breeder is Elizabeth Muir-Cham-berlain who began with dogs from George and Phyllis Willis. Soon she produced Am. , Mex. , World and Int. Ch. Perwinkle Godzilla, whose sire and dam are Ch. Cetera’s Little Black Sambo and Ch. Tajar’s Midnight Munchkin. Godzilla did well in the show ring and produced several of today’s top show dogs. These include Ch. Yarrow’s Mighty Joe Young, bred by Beth Sweigart, Letisha Wubbel and Doris Tolone and owned by Dr. and Mrs. William Truesdale, and Ch. Hilane’s Harry Potter, the top-winning Affenpinscher in Canada, owned by Sandra Lex.

In New Mexico, Patricia Bouldin continues with the Balu bloodlines and added King’s Royal dogs from the late Kay Wurtz. Bouldin’s Tajar Affenpinschers have had an impact on England as well as America. Barbara and Jenna Gresser in Arizona have used and exhibited the Tajar dogs and dogs from Marilyn Holt in Oregon to develop their breeding and exhibiting program under the name Black Forest. Among their important dogs is Ch. Black Forest Cookie Monster.

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