Meet The Pros: Paul Catterson, Conformation Handler
Q: We want to know more about your history and how you got to this level with your dog(s).
A: My mom helped me began showing dogs at the age of 10 in California. I always liked dogs and realized you could make money showing them as a career. Jerry Steele hired me to work for him when I turned 17. I remained in California until the age of 25 and then moved to the Midwest.
Q: Why do you feed Purina Pro Plan dog food?
A: Pro Plan is a good food for all different breeds of dogs and they do very well on it. I prefer feeding Pro Plan Sensitive Skin and Stomach Salmon Formula. It is the only thing I feed.
Q: Why do you recommend Purina Pro Plan for show dogs like yours?
A: All of my dogs do well on Pro Plan and do not have problems or issues with it. The product is always available wherever I am.
Q: Why are you passionate about what you do?
A: I have a very competitive nature and am a huge sports fan. Competing in dog show is similar to be active in sports competition and I like dogs. It has allowed me to make a job out of something some people have as a hobby.
Q: When it comes to your career in conformation, what are you most proud of?
A: Going the extra mile to take care of the dogs I am showing and exercising and fitting them to the best of my ability, even if means sacrificing to accomplish it. The Group win in 2009 at Westminster was a highlight I am very proud of.
Q: What advice would you give to others looking to reach your level of success?
A: The best advice I can give is for someone would be to work with someone who can teach you the things you need to know and how to accomplish them. That person should be someone who does things properly by putting the dogs first.
Q: What makes your dog(s) exceptional?
A: The personality of the dogs in the ring help them to stand out. I enjoy steering them in the right direction so they can do it on their own through their individual personalities. They don’t work like robots.
Q: What do you find most rewarding about the time you spend with your dog(s)?
A: Enjoyable to watch a dog come around when it reaches it best with coat, training and confidence. The process of changing a pet into a top show dog is very rewarding.
Q: If you could train or compete with your dog(s) anywhere in the world, where
would you choose to go?
A: Westminster and the national breed specialties, because the best of the breeds are competing.
Q: What do you think it takes to get your dog(s) to perform at the highest level?
A: It begins at home with food, exercise, grooming and water. You have to let dogs be themselves.
Q: Of all the dogs you’ve had, which one has had the biggest impact on you and why?
A: The dog that has had the most impact was CH Cilleine Masquarade (AKA Lincoln). He was my first big winner with a backer that really kicked off my career. Lincoln was enjoyable to show and won 3 consecutive Brussels Griffon BIS 2007-8-9 National Specialties. In addition, he won 70 BIS titles and in doing so broke the 30-year record for points earned in the breed.
Q: Please list any notable awards & accomplishments
- Toy Group Winner at Westminster
- 120 BIS in Brussels Griffons
- 2019 BIS Brussels Griffon National Specialty—MBIS MBISS GCHS New Year’s Somerset Single Barrel Batch
- 2015 BIS Australian Shepherd National Specialty
*This individual serves as a Purina ambassador.