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Smok z Kordegardy born 22.12.49


Bajda z Babiej Wsi born 15.4.48


Our thanks to Beata Lesniak-Maalecka¬ at www.dziech.pnet for the photographs

The Polish Lowland Sheepdog is known throughout Europe by the name PON, which derives from its Polish name - Polski Owczarek Nizinny.

The ancestor of the PON arrived in the Polish lowlands with the nomads coming from the Caspian Sea area in the 1200s. There is a reference to the Polish Lowland Sheepdog in literature as early as the 1500s, when a ship owned by K. Grabski sailed from Gdansk to Scotland with grain to exchange for sheep. With him he also took 6 lo

wland sheepdogs, trading 3 of them with a Scottish shepherd for a ram and ewe. The shepherd had admired the dogs for their excellent work.

At the beginning of 1900s, there was a decline in sheep-farming and a Polish princess, Princess Grocholska started collecting some of the best specimens of sheepdog she could find to breed at her kennels on her estate in Planta (eastern Poland). The first official show appearance of the PON took place in a farm animal exhibition in 1924, when the princess exhibited two of her dogs. Mesdames Wanda and Rosa Zoltowskie started breeding in the 1930s, their dogs originating from Planta. These ladies laid the foundations of the breed.

Unfortunately the two kennels ceased breeding activities during the Second World War. New attempts to resurrect the breed started in Bydgoszcz with Mrs. Kuionowicz (her kennels existed until 1956) and the pillar of the breed veterinary surgeon Dr. Danuta Hryniewicz. Dr. Hryniewicz managed to find dogs originating from the early famous kennels and began her own breeding line under the affix 'Kordegarda', which is still well known among PON people today. It took 15 years after the second World War to get the breed established. Her famous dog 'Smok z Kordegardy' became the true 'father of the breed'.

In 1959 the FCI accepted the PON as a new breed, and the actual breed standard was published in the 1960s. In the 1970s they gained wider popularity in Poland and later, the rest of Europe.

The PON has travelled almost all over the world since then. In the 1960s it was first imported into East Germany, and later to West Germany, the Netherlands, Belgium and France. The number of PONs in these countries has risen to more than 4000 now. The breed was first presented in the UK in 1985 and thanks to breeder Megan Butler (Megsflocks) there are almost 1000 of these dogs in Great Britain to date. .The same year the Polish Lowland Sheepdog Club was formed

Denmark was the first of the Northern Countries to begin breeding PONs, in the early 1980s. It was not until 1984 when the first PON's were imported to Norway and from there to Sweden.

Today the number of PON's in Poland may well exceed 3000. Even though representatives of the breed can be found in Europe, America and Australia, the breed is still comparatively rare.


The Memorial to Danuta Hryniewicz


The Polski Owczarek Nizinny, or Polish Lowland Sheepdog as it is known here, is one of the two native breeds¬ of herders in Poland the other being the Owczarek Podhalanski or Tatra Mountain Dog.

The breed's first 'official' arrival into the UK was in 1985. Megan Butler (Megsflocks), well known in Briards and Hungarian Pulis, was the pioneering importer of the breed.

The first six dogs came from Belgium from the de Halkaza Kennel of Zenon Mossakowski; three males Jucha, Jonasz and¬  Jaki da and one female Janka, and a male Jurista and a bitch Jasna from the second litter.

.In 1985 The Polish Lowland Sheepdog Club was formed and duly recognized by the Kennel Club.¬ 

In 1986 the late Bob and Phyllis Prestridge imported a bitch Panja, from the German Kennel of Manfred and Monica Schulze, followed in 1987 by Quenzo and Queenie pon von der Raubkammer.

It was another German dog, Alik Kurna Izba in Megsflocks, from East Germany, who was to have a big influence on the British bred dogs being a prolific sire, along with the Dutch Import, Uwaga Jestem Smok in Megsflocks.

The breed was first exhibited in 1986 at the National Working Breeds Society.

In September 1986 more breed history was made when the first quarantine-bred litter was born at the Overhills Kennels of Meg Purnell-Carpenter. Megan Butler had arranged for the importation of a young bitch from the most famous of all PON kennels, that of Dr Danuta Hryniewicz. Her Kordegarda Kennels are somewhere in the pedigree of every Polish in the world today. Naspa z Kordegardy had been mated to Polish Ch Igor z Zeriby, and duly whelped five puppies.

Between 1985 and 1991 the real foundations of the breed were laid. There were 42 imports during this period, By the end of 1991 registrations stood at 294. In 1991 the Kennel Club transferred the breed to the main register. The first open show breed classes were scheduled at Southampton. The first championship show to give breed classes was Windsor and in 1992 the breed appeared for the first time at Crufts. with an entry of 59,.



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