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CINDERHOF - Jo Cathie ...

*GSDCA Specialist Judge and Surveyor

*UK Championship show and FCI specialist judge


*Past SV national and WUSV breed judge


*Breeder - Cinderhof German Shepherds

My passion for all things German Shepherd began some 34 years in Scotland. I was introduced to the breed by a high school friend whose family did a little obedience, showing and breeding. That family provided me with an introduction to several ‘larger’ breeders who presented me with opportunities as a junior handler and eventually I began showing in the breed classes.

I moved to Belgium from the UK in 2007 to pursue showing dogs on the continent and during those 8 years, mainly with vom Amulree and then von Santamar kennels, I continued to learn and develop my skills in presentation for the show ring and in absolute joy in ‘contact’ with my dogs.   Whilst in Belgium I was the holder of 2 x VA (UK, NL) Ch Veneze Ellie Sch3, SG5 BSZS Juwika Destroyer, VA (BSZS) Leo vd Zenteiche for his first year and Young Sieger (B, NL) Quattro Steffen Haus among others. I also owned and exhibited V’ Lara vd Zenteiche Sch2, VA Ch Veneze Chaos Sch3 and VA Hera von der Tejada Schloss who won the 2012 German Sieger LC GBKL.


I held breeder prefixes in both the UK and in Belgium although I bred very few litters myself while working with and for others.   My great friends David and Joan Hall of the UK’s leading ‘Gayville’ kennel who often took me under their wings as a young enthusiast encouraged me back then to complete my UK breed specialist judging credentials with the Breed Council of Great Britain, and I did so in 2006. In 2013, I completed the german based WUSV judges course as it was then, followed by the national SV judges exams in 2019 and then proceeded to pass SV international exams with Herr W Lauber and Frau M Van Dorssen, though completion of the third exam was hampered by covid.


I am delighted to be a GSDCA specialist judge in Australia, where I am also a GSDCA breed surveyor. I have now judged at the highest level in many countries including Norway, Pakistan, Scotland, Wales, England, Belgium, all states of Australia and several times in New Zealand.


In 2015 I arrived in Australia bringing with me the kennel name (vom) Cinderhof from Belgium, at which time I began to concentrate on my own breeding activity. Since that time, I have been blessed with good luck and great friends and have in just seven years, handled two national medalists, owned three more national medalists in siblings Freinhauf Havoc and Freinhauf Hannibal, and our imported male Chili della Valcuvia, and have now bred a dual national gold medalist of my own in 2022 & 2023 winner Ch Cinderhof Italiaa. My pride and joy.  

I imported VA Ch Veneze Chaos, Ch Conbhariean Freddie and Chili della Valcuvia to Australia to add to the gene pool and I am proud of the impact on breed health and conformation that both Freddie and Chili continue to have in Australia and also in New Zealand. Cinderhof dogs have won seven national classes to date in three years of exhibiting and this year I secured the prestigious Sam Bonifacio award for most successful breeder at the 2022 national.  


We have bred seven Cinderhof breed champions, all but one competing successfully in both All-breed and specialist shows, two excellent merit females (the highest grade available in Australia) in Italiaa and Vantaa, and Cinderhof hold the bronze medallion for hip and elbow health, now working toward silver with 21 passes through the scheme despite the short time actively breeding.  

I have also been heavily involved in training seminars and breed education events since arriving in Australia and am always happy to talk to fellow enthusiasts and share experience.

Judging Macho & Zicke

© Cinderhof 2015                                                                                                                                                                                                                            

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