INTERVIEW WITH BENTON READ BY LEASTER R. HOLLOWAY Summer, 1999 LRH: What is your name? BBR: Benton B. Read. LRH: How many years have you been breeding American Bulldogs? BBR: Seven. LRH: Who did you buy your first American Bulldog from? BBR: Mike McDonald. LRH: What did you think about John D. Johnson's kennel? BBR: He had the most prominent kennel set that time. He also had the best looking dogs. LRH: What about Kyle Symmes Kennel? BBR: I only met Mr. Symmes once and had no dealings with his kennel. LRH: What lines did you go for and why? BBR: When I started I was not looking at lines. I bought a dog out of Red Machine 3 because I liked the red color. LRH: Why a Mean Machine daughter instead of a Red Machine daughter? BBR: I already had a dog from the Red Machine. I liked the way Mean Machine looked with the two dark eye patches. LRH: What were the size of Mean Machine and Red Machine? JDJ: Mean Machine weighed about 140 pounds, and Red Machine I would have to guess, 130-140. LRH: Did American Bulldogs have a lot of color back then? BBR: Yes. LRH: Please describe Tuffie 26 and Casey to us. BBR: Tuffie looked like the Mean Machine, only at 100 pounds. Casey looked like most of the Red Machine line, 100 pounds and lots of red color and one dark eye patch. LRH: Did you like what you were producing? BBR: Yes! Casey and Tuffie produced some outstanding puppies. LRH: What happened to Casey? BBR: He died of cancer in July, 1997. LRH: How do you feel about Casey? BBR: He was my best friend and I miss him every day. LRH: Did you keep a son or daughter? BBR: No. LRH: Why did you decide to breed Tuffie 26, AKA "Beth", to Dick the Bruiser #3, AKA "BUSTER"? BBR: I had three litters with Casey and wanted to see what Tuffie could produce with another stud dog. I liked Buster's size and the red brindle. LRH: Were you pleased with the breeding? BBR: Very pleased! LRH: Who was the biggest pup? BBR: Bruiser. LRH: Did you keep a pup from that breeding, and if so why? BBR: I kept what is now Sugar Tuffie 27, and Johnson's Machine Bruiser. I kept Sugar because she was the only red puppy in the litter, and she was a female. I kept Bruiser in the beginning because when he was a puppy, he was so funny looking nobody wanted him. After a while we became attached to one another and I couldn't part with him. He grew up to be a fine puppy, and several people have told me, they kick themselves for passing him up when they had the chance to buy him.. LRH: You produced Johnson's Sugar Tuffie's 27, 50, 51 and Johnson's Machine Bruiser? BBR: Yes. LRH: Why didn't you keep Sugar Tuffie 50? BBR: John D. and I had a deal. If he wanted a female puppy from the litter he could have whatever he wanted in return for a stud fee. He also took a second female for the same price. I had already paid the stud fee, he just gave it back, paid the same for the second puppy. LRH: If you could go back in time now, would you keep Sugar Tuffie 50? BBR: No, she was easily the best female in the litter, but she was all white. I like color. I knew John D. liked this type puppy and could do more with it than me. LRH: Did you ever breed to Dick the Bruiser #3 again? BBR: No. LRH: Did you ever breed Tuffie 26 again? BBR: No. LRH: Is Tuffie 26 still alive? BBR: As of today, very much so. LRH: How do you feel about Sugar Tuffie 50 and 51's decedents, and who they're bred to? BBR: They have both produced some outstanding puppies. I am very proud of them and their descendants. I don't know how all the litters were bred, so I can't really comment. LRH: Did you breed Sugar Tuffie 27? BBR: Yes, to Elrod Jr. LRH: Why to Johnson's Elrod Jr.? BBR: Pedigree and color. LRH: Did you keep a puppy from that breeding, if so why? BBR: Yes, one male, red brindle. LRH: What does Dick the Bruiser 26, AKA "Buster" look like? BBR: Red brindle Bulldog. LRH: How about in size and conformation? BBR: Very well put together. LRH: Will you use him in the future? BBR: Most likely. LRH: Have you bred Johnson's Machine Bruiser? BBR: No. LRH: (Question # 33) Why not? BBR: No one has approached me about breeding him that has a suitable female, one that I believe would improve the breed, not just create more puppies. LRH: What does he look like? Details please! BBR: Mostly white with dark brindle spots. 132 pounds, 26 inches tall, 13 inch chest, very Bulldoggy, great temperament. LRH: Are you planning to breed him in the future? BBR: Maybe, refer to question # 33. LRH: How do you feel about the color issue? BBR: I like dogs with a lot of color. LRH: What about size of the American Bulldog? BBR: I prefer larger well built dogs, the total package. Everything has to be there or big doesn't matter. Males 100-140, females 90-120. LRH: How come you don't show your dogs? BBR: I do show my dogs. I show them to John D., he says it's a Bulldog. That's all I need to know. My dogs or myself have nothing to prove in the show ring. We'll both stand on our own merit. LRH: What stud dog will you use next for Sugar Tuffie 27? BBR: I haven't decided at this time. LRH: Who will you get your next Sugar Tuffie from, and why? BBR: Me. I'll keep the puppies I want. Why, because I know exactly what I'm getting. LRH: What's the secret for breeding HUGE and AWESOME dogs? BBR: Buy the best females you can find. Breed to the best stud dog you can find. Not the closest, the cheapest, even the biggest or to the one in your backyard. Look at the pedigrees find the type you want. Not the flavor of the month or what somebody else wants, what you want. Your name will be on the pedigree, those dogs are yours forever. Produce the best you can. Lastly, you need a good deal of luck! LRH: Thank you for your time Ben Read!