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TRC : When did you first start handling Rottweilers and for whom?

WK: Pauline Rotkowski, the year was 1972.

TRC : What was the name of the first dog? Was it an import?

WK : It was Amstel Von Paulus, she was not an import.

TRC : Compare some of your first dogs to what you have had presently.....size, conformation, temperament....have they really changed that much?

WK : They’ve changed and they’re changing back, I think. They had soft backs when I started, which isn’t good and they’re going back into soft backs again. They have more size to them now than years ago, you know in the eyes" Bigger is always Better", but not always correct. Temperaments are much more ‘pleasant", let’s use much more "pleasant’ as a word, before they were just plain beasts, that’s why they had to get the temperaments in order to sell them, because not everyone could own one, they were to much.

TRC : Who gave you your nickname of Kubear?

WK : (Walter pauses and smiles) That originated years ago in school!

TRC : How many Rottweilers have you finished.....approximately?

WK : Yeah, I got the numbers at home.....my wife is going to count the pictures.......TRC: I spoke with Walters wife..appox 200+!

TRC : Do you have a favorite or favorites over the years?

WK : No, not really. I’ve had some that were better to live with than others, but not really a favorite, it’s just like saying "special"....which special did I really like? They’re all "special", that’s why they call them that!

TRC : You have had some tremendous wins all around.....do you remember one that was particularly exciting for you?

WK : Mmmm, NO, off hand, some of the bigger specialties were nice, I won the "Garden" once or twice, which is always nice to do in your career, but nothing that would jump out and grab you!

TRC : What was your original breed?.....What got you started in dog shows, where did you start....did you have a particular person that helped you or got you started in dogs?

WK : German Shepherds, I started with German Shepherds.....in obedience actually. I got a German Shepherd and put him through a CD, and then a CDX in 3 shows ! You know once you win...things get better...when you start winning, then you think you can do anything. I got a Dog World award and started to train dogs at the kennel. I also trained dogs at Fran Wassermann’s kennel.....obedience then into the conformation ring........nobody really got me started. I basically watched Alan Levine and other handlers  that showed all breeds. All dogs are different, and you have to handle different dogs in different ways. No two dogs are the same.

TRC : So when can we expect to see you standing in the ring without a dog???? "judging?" We know you are just about there.

WK: When I can’t see and can’t run anymore! I’m going to "bite the bullet" to the end!

TRC : When you finally do start to judge, do you have any advice to the people who will be bringing you dogs?

WK : I hope to be  judging most of the big breeds, the breeds I’ve shown, Mastiffs, Bullmastiffs, Akitas, Rottweilers, Giant Schnauzers. I’ve campaigned Giant Schnauzers, I’ve campaigned most of those big dogs at one time or another, mostly big stuff, and Am Staffs, which I’ve bred and won a National Specialty. As for advice on people bringing me dogs ...... rule one ...... stand up showing a big dog! I don't care for kneeling in front of a big dog.  They can kneel by their bedside the night before, don’t kneel in front of me, because once that dog makes a move and grabs me..... I’ll grab you! It’s simple that no one should kneel down showing a big dog.....you don’t have the power to control the dog, he’s an animal, he’s not a robot, you never know what they are going to do.

TRC : It was a pleasure to have "a word with" Walter Kuberski......if you don’t know who he is you haven’t been with this breed very long. he's got a heart of gold and has the "Midas Touch" when it comes to showing "our breed".....those of us that know him have a dear friend and a man that can make you laugh, but he doesn’t sugar coat anything and shoots straight from the hip. as it says on one of the stickers on his van" Cowboys don’t need no instruction"...........thanks Walter.....LB

Interview by Linda Berberich

Past Interviews

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