When I was approached to write this book in 1998 for Crowood publishers, it was pointed out to me that there had not been a new book for many years and the breed had come a long way since the last one was published. It was currently the fourth most popular breed in the toy group at that time.
I could see the value of a book that would take the new puppy owner through the mine-field of do's and don'ts of just choosing a puppy.
There was also the need of a publication that might also cover many of the other subjects such as breeding, choosing a stud dog, breeding a litter and caring for the puppies. All aspects of caring for your Bichon is discussed from feeding to trimming the coat yourself. If you are already involved in the breed and wish to show your dog, there are chapters that cover most aspects and should help you to make the right choices.
For the more seasoned exhibitor, deciding when is the right time to judge is a subject rarely discussed beyond basic etiquette and "what to wear". Here I have tried to cover more than just actual ring procedure. I also hope to encourage the reader to decide first if they have the necessary character to cope with the decision making involved when judging. It is not always enough to judge just because one has been invited to do so.
I hope any reader will find this book thought provoking as well as instructional especially in some areas such as exhibiting and breeding. Although now and a little dated regarding some of the information with no mention of the Accredited Breeders Scheme and eye testing the vast majority of the information still applies. The account of the history of the breed here in the UK is well worth securing a copy if you get the chance. Apparently they are still available from Amazon.co.uk
Brenda Ellis of *Our Dogs* writes:~~
I think the cover picture on this book probably sums up the book itself. It is a lovely picture of a Bichon and it's a lovely book, well put together and well presented with some excellent diagrams and photographs.
It starts with a history of the breed, followed by a really thorough interpretation of the breed standard. The chapter on choosing a puppy and all that this involves for seller and buyer is well worth reading. Grooming and presentation is expertly explained as you would expect from someone who presents bichons as well as Chris does.
The actual business of showing is gone into most thoroughly and will be very useful for newer people in the breed. Ailments and diseases are sensibly explained with no attempt made to exaggerate hereditary problems. A great number of breeders involved in the breed for a long time are mentioned and the successes they have had both breeding and showing under their affixes written about. There are also interesting pieces about the Bichon scene in other countries, so the world-wide scene is covered.
I find the book most informative and pleasing to the eye. Pet owners, new people in the breed and established breeders will all find something of interest here.
It is amazing however long you have been in dogs you can always learn something by reading.
Bichon Frise...part of the Best Of Breed publications was printed in 2011 and edited by myself.
It was compliled by several top breeders contributing such as Betty Kelman Jack (Shoolters)who wrote the chapter on the breeds history, Pauline Johns (manoir) who wrote all about caring for your puppies and Dawn Russell (Rusmar) who contributed more chapters including grooming. Caroline & Carol Bowman added an extensive chapter on nutrition and caring for your bichon and I covered many aspects of the character of the breed and breed specifics. Unlike my first book which although sadly out of print the odd copy does show up from time to time, this latest publication is widly available from Amazon and locally at "pets At Home branches and other big pet supermarkets.