Minutes of the Annual General Meeting of The International
Union for Leonberger Dogs.
Held on September 25th Hotel Kirchner, Leonberg, Germany.
Member Clubs represented
Austria, Belgium, Czech Republic, Denmark,
Finland, France, Germany, Great Britain, Italy, The Netherlands, Russia, Sweden, Spain,
Switzerland, USA, Victoria (Australia.)
Hungary, Norway, Slovak Republic.
The Chairman for the Meeting was Gerhard Zerle.
Minutes were taken by Hein Sibrijns.
Herr Zerle opened the meeting and welcomed those present. He expressed
pleasure that so many member countries were represented.
The previous Secretary, Matthias Ring, was unable to attend the meeting and Hein
Sibrijns offered to take the minutes.
Geeske Joel, who had translated from German to English at previous meetings, did
not want to attend this meeting.
Herr Zerle and Hein Sibrijns agreed to translate.
Special Problems of the Member Clubs
The Club with the biggest problem is The Leonberger Club of America.
The American Kennel Club (AKC) does notyet recognise the Leonberger breed.
Another Club, The Leonberger Club of The United States, (LCUS) has applied to
the AKC for recognition of the breed and parent club status.
The LCUS was formed by some members of the LCA. Neither the LCA nor the LCUS
object to their members being a member of both clubs.
According to the statutes of The Union, only the "parent club" to the
AKC can be a member of The Union. If the LCA is not the parent club at the time
the AKC grants recognition to the Leonberger breed, the LCA will not be a member
of the International Union.
At the end of October 2004, the LCA members will vote on whether to apply for
parent club status. The president of the LCA, Beth O’Connor, is in favour of
application. She reported that the LCA will lose members whichever way the vote
It was stressed again that, after the breed has been fully recognised by the
AKC, only the AKC parent Club can be the member for the USA Union.
The Union will support the LCA, when they decide to apply for full AKC
recognition and parent club status.
However the relationship between the two Leonberger clubs in the USA, and the
decision whether or not to apply for AKC affiliation, is a national American
issue. The Union will maintain the status quo with the LCA being the Union
member for the USA, until there is a decision from the AKC.
Austria reported that they have a breeding problem. Two out of three matings
are unsuccessful. Denmark also reported the same problem.
In Germany the percentage of unsuccessful matings is estimated at 30%.
It was suggested that research should start in these countries, to find out why
so many matings are unsuccessful.
The senior Mayor of Leonberg arrived to welcome the delegates and to speak
about the assets of his town.
He presented a model of the statue of a .Leonberger, sponsored by Eukanuba
(Procter and Gamble), that will be placed on a prominent place in the
Eventually small replicas can be reproduced and sent all over the world as a
symbol for the town and the breed.
Election of Committee Members
The French delegation reported that they could not participate in the
The French Club had submitted a proposal to change the statutes.
The Committee of the French Club does not consider itself to be a member of the
Union, so long as the statutes have not been changed.
It was emphasised that the statutes had been accepted unanimously by all members
in 2003 and delegates of the French Club had signed the new statutes.
It was agreed that a proposal for the change to the approved statutes, could be
debated after members of the board had been duly elected.
It was proposed that Herr Georg Leipelt oversee the elections.
President. Guido Perosino proposed Mr. Gerhard Zerle.
Vice President. Gerhard Zerle proposed Dr. Guido Perosino.
France and Italy abstained.
Treasurer. Hein Sibrijns proposed Mr. Peter Cejnek.
France and Austria abstained.
Secretary. Guido Perosino proposed Mr. Hein Sibrijns.
France and Netherlands abstained.
Asessor. The German Leonberger Club had chosen Mr. Georg Leipelt
There was ten minute pause in the meeting.
Discussion on changes to the statutes.
The official body that registers associations in Leonberg, requires some
changes to be made to the statutes. It was stressed that it is not a legal
requirement to register an association in Germany and registering the Union
might have more negative than positive effects.
Registering would mean that the Union would have to work on a national and
international level. This would go against the interests and goals of the member
clubs, if the International Union interfered with their work on a national
The statement that "The Union is an umbrella organisation" will not be
After discussion it was unanimously agreed that the Union statutes will remain
as passed with only one alteration.
Alteration In the Preface, the following wording will be removed
"Once incorporated with the registry of associations, the letters e.v. will
be added to the name".
France proposed that each member country is delegated one vote per 300
The statutes state that there is one vote per each member club, regardless of
the size of its membership. This is the accepted procedure for most umbrella
organisations, national Kennel Clubs and the FCI. The FCI is considering
granting membership to umbrella organisations such as The Union. Therefore it is
logical that the representation and voting in the Union, should reflect the way
voting is regulated in the FCI.
The French delegates present agreed with the conclusion of the discussion, but
they reported that their Committee has decided that the French Leonberger Club
cannot be a member of the Union, if a modification of the statutes is not
All member clubs voted unanimously to conserve the one club, one vote rule.
The meeting was convinced that this must be a misunderstanding on the part of
the French Club. Guido Perosino and Hein Sibrijns will discuss the matter with
the president of the French Club, to try to find a solution.
It is not acceptable that France will no longer be a member of The Union.
Health and life expectancy of the Leonberger.
The LCA is gathering information and has set up an open health registry.
Health information on diseases such as PolyNeuropathy, is available in LCA
publications, the French Club magazine, The Swedish Club magazine and on the
The frequency of occurrence for this disease is very low. This makes research
into possible hereditary causes, very difficult and can only be done by an
The Leonberger Club of Great Britain has contacts with the famous geneticist,
Dr. Malcolm Willis, who is willing to investigate the condition. Pedigrees of
any known and confirmed cases of PolyNeuropathy can be sent to Dr. Willis, via
It was stressed that as there are so few incidences of the disease, everyone
should not be alarmist. Dogs which have the disease should be eliminated from
breeding. If a dog already has offspring when it is diagnosed with the disease,
also exclude the offspring from breeding and this will further limit the number
of cases. With the low number of affected dogs, there should be no need to use
them for breeding. (click here for more info on
We should not exaggerate issues and eliminate entire breeding lines because of
what is often gossip.
Dr Samuel Buff can be asked to write an article and help with research
It was decided that the Secretary, Hein Sibrijns will contact the member
clubs and compose an inventory of the most common diseases and health related
Eg : bitches who do not conceive. Positive results such as good hip scores will
also be investigated.
The Committee will then make a proposal for investigation.
Pablo Pabst announced that he is retiring as President of the Swiss Club. He
thanked the Union for ten years of constructive cooperation and he introduced
Anita Treichler as his successor.
Dr. Guido Perosino (Italy) presented a drawing of a twelve and a thirteen
year old Leonberger. He introduced Lucio Migni, the new president of the Italian
He went on to announce the Millenium Leonberger awards for 2005:
Tatiana Zavorina (Russia):
" For opening the way for the proper distribution of the Leonberger in the
Russian federation, one of the biggest countries in the world, after the most
recent history has opened up new political frontiers to Europe"
Georg Leipelt (Germany):
"For the excellent organisation of the German championship Club Show for so
It is the most valuable and emotional show for everyone in the world of
Dr Perosino reported that the Leonberger "Bobby Ensson Behomia" has
won the group every time he was shown in Italy and he has won four Best in Show.
This is a big promotion for the breed in Italy.
Finland announced that they are organising a large show in 2005 and details
will appear in the Union calendar.
The Russian Club is producing a video on all aspects of breeding, showing and
working with Leonbergers. They would welcome all taped and digital information.
Please contact Natalia Romanova e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org
The Danish Kennel Club has reviewed the breeding rules, installed last year.
A dog living in a country where there is no rule that elbows have to be scored
before breeding, can now be used in Denmark without an elbow score.
The Leonberger Club Of America celebrates its 20th Anniversary on
March 28th- April 1st 2005, in Austin, Texas. Everybody is
Daniela Pavlovska, the breed warden of the Czechian Leonberger
Club warned that kennel web sites may contain false information about health
checks and show wins of the kennel’s dogs. Anyone wishing to import a dog,
should check the information given, by contacting the breed warden, e-mail email@example.com
Mr Fred Inwood (GB) expressed his pleasure at the developments within the
Union. He said that the meeting was very pleasant and the most constructive
In co-operation with the Union, the German Club will organise a judges’
seminar in November 2005. Details will be sent to all member clubs, later in the
Georg Leipelt (Germany) asked the member clubs to send him studbook
information. Because the German Club compiles the studbook itself, it must be
able to check the information related to foreign imports. Please send to Georg.firstname.lastname@example.org
Herr Gerhard Zerle thanked the representatives for their positive
contribution to the discussions and closed the meeting.