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In December of 1995, we whelped a litter at Elanwood that was co-bred and co-owned by my daughter and me with Stan and Jane Flowers. Little did we know the historical significance of this event.

Ch. Elanwood's Might Makes Right

There was in this litter a special flashy fawn male. A breeder friend from Australia had expressed interest in these bloodlines, and wanted to import a natural-eared dog to show there. Everything about this boy said he was good enough to do it naturally, so we left him uncropped for possible exportation at the age of four months. The rest of the litter was cropped. As this puppy, which my daughter had named "Jerry Rice" after the football player, matured, we formed an emotional attachment to this exceptional dog. By the time he was old enough to go to Australia, there was no way we were going to give him up.

Stan sat us down and warned us of the obstacles ahead, and the difficulty of even finishing a natural eared Boxer, let alone specialing him. We understood, but we also felt we had the right to show this beautiful dog for everyone to see. Keeping him confined to our backyard, as was suggested by one person, was never an option. Natural ears framing the face of our Boxers does soften their expression, but it does not mean there is any less nobility or alertness in their look. I hope that some day the Boxer "old guard" will understand that being a Boxer comes from inside the dogs - from their hearts and their souls - not their ears! When they realize that, they may begin to know that choice is good. Every time I go to our state capital to argue against a bill which would take away our right to crop, I wonder who will defend my right to exhibit, without duress, dogs with natural ears!

Best of Breed

Because we knew there would be controversy surrounding Jerry’s show career, we waited until he was eighteen months old and ready for the Open class before we put him in the ring. He finished his championship, undefeated in the classes, in nine shows. His final win as a class dog was a prestigious finish at the Waukesha cluster by going Best of Breed over three specials and on to a Working Group I.


Best in Show - Jerry, Stan & Jane

Jerry has had wins under almost all of the top judges judging today, and so far in his career, has won eight Group Firsts and three Specialty Best in Shows. On November 15, 1998, he became the first natural-eared Boxer to win an All-Breed BIS in this country. This record-setting win was awarded by judge Denny Kodner. We are very proud that Jerry qualified for the Top Twenty this year by finishing 1998 as the Number Ten Boxer (Dog News Top Ten List).

Please come meet our very special boy at the ABC this May.

Bliss Bancroft, Elanwood Boxers


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