D.M. Dudley’s Ukrainia Borzoi


By Sue E.A. Vasick


[originally published in the Spring, 1992 issue of Borzoi International magazine] All Rights Reserved.


In England, Dorothy Dudley’s interest in Borzoi began in the 1930’s and continued to her demise at a ripe old age. Her first Borzoi were bitches, these being Iza, Zwogezdi and Zwogezdi’s dam, Icy Lass.

Zwogezdi was whelped November 13, 1936 and was sired by Cossack Carzoff, bred by the Tyrells who had moved to Canada. She was 11-1/2 months old when she went to live with Miss Dudley, and had had distemper as a puppy, resulting in a high strung nature. Unfortunately, Zwogezdi’s nature was to be the death of her, as she escaped from Miss Dudley one day and died of exposure. Miss Dudley was understandably very distraught over this incident and it took her many years to recover from the tragedy.

Sympathizing with her loss when they returned to England, the Tyrells hoped to fill the void Zwogezdi left by presenting Dorothy with her dam, Icy Lass. At the time Icy was too old to present anymore litters, but she gave Dorothy two very good years of love and companionship until she died two months after her 10th birthday on August 16, 1939. Icy had a wonderful temperament and pedigree, being a granddaughter of Nora of Shay; she had belonged to Ernest Guy for two years, presenting him with a litter sired by Russet of Llanfair, then two subsequent litters by Ch. Felstead before going to live with the Tyrells.

Miss Dudley’s next bitch was named Iza, a half-Barnaigh bred bitch officially registered as Isinglass. She cost four pounds at 11-1/2 weeks of age, which was quite a tidy sum in those days!  Dorothy described her as an orange marked white by Bedinovitch of Barnaigh ex Patricia of St. Dulthus. She also described her as being very straight in the shoulder, having a Roman head and being undershot, so no one could accuse Dorothy of being kennel blind!

igor and marnova

Dorothy adored Iza, but bad times fell upon her, as well. At the time, Dorothy was living at home with her parents, and her father did not like the dogs – particularly Iza – or understand her love for them. When she brought home another bitch – Marnova of Mantavani [Vasstri of Mantavani ex Marika of Mantavani] – in March 1944, things got rather difficult around the Dudley household. Then in 1946, Dorothy brought home the white and red Igor of Moskowa [Moryak of Moskowa ex Verba of Moskowa]; Dorothy’s father put his foot down —- Iza had to go!

Iza went to what Dorothy felt was a nice family, but the people didn’t understand what Borzoi temperament was truly like and the poor bitch’s life became a living hell. Dorothy managed to get her back, but her father wouldn’t allow Iza to stay and ordered Dorothy to destroy her. Although Dorothy obeyed her father, she never forgave him, and never stopped crying for what she did to her bitch.

As time went on, Miss Dudley’s personal life sorted itself out as she got a job at a hospital in March 1949 and worked there until August of 1967. She was able to finally breed her first litter of Ukrainia Borzoi; this was, of course, Igor to Marnova. This breeding produced a bitch named Zinnia of Ukrainia, who was eventually shown but never made up, as Miss Dudley was often a bit short of money and had limited holiday time from her job. Because of that, Zinnia only attended some local open shows and two championship shows.


Dorothy described Zinnia as being a big bitch weighing 67 pounds at 15 months of age, and having a 34” brisket in her old age. She also said that Zinnia was white and red-gold, a bit flat in topline, straight in shoulder, and quick with a wonderful Borzoi smile.

In 1951, Zinnia was bred to the well known red sable and white Ch. Ivanoff of Rydens, producing a litter of 3 dogs, 7 bitches on December 8th. Of these ten, seven survived – 2 dogs and 5 bitches – and Dorothy particularly liked a bitch she named Cassia of Ukrainia, who was white with red head markings and patches on her sides. Cassia remained at Ukrainia.

She was bred to the well known red on white dog, Gay Cavalier of Yadasar, having a litter on October 30,1953, with the pups named Falcon, Fedro, Felix, Flamingo, Fieldfare, Flying Fox [all males] and Fressia. This was a tragic litter as within two months time they all contracted hardpad disease, and it was a fight to save any of them. Falcon was first to get sick and die. All the rest were then immunized with ‘anti-hardpad serum’, whereupon Flamingo got sick and put to rest on the 26th of December, as he had gone blind with meningitis. The remainder of the males also got sick but were saved, according to Dorothy, by Herb Royal Garlic capsules!

Fressia, the only bitch in this litter, was exposed to the disease but never got ill, so wasn’t even inoculated; she never did get sick. She was a spotted tri bitch of lovely type, beautiful head and nice angles, and did her share of winning at the few shows she was at. As a brood bitch, she was bred several times. Her litter with Zahedi of Carradale produced 2 dogs and 4 bitches, only to have the pups all die within their first week due to Freesia developing eclampsia. She was re-bred, but for some reason killed all her pups.  Finally, though, Freesia was able to continue on the line when bred to Horst of Woodcourt, with the litter born in March 1956. This produced Verbena of Ukrainia.


Zahedi of Carradale was used again in hopes of incorporating his blood into the kennel, this time being bred to Verbena. A healthy litter was born April 3, 1961, and Henna of Ukrainia was retained.

These were the original foundations of the Ukrania Borzoi, nice animals by general standards of the time, certainly fraught with tragedy and hard times, but well brought on nonetheless. However, for some reason, which Miss Dudley did not relay to me, these lines were never bred on. Maybe it was the economy and just hard times, but whatever happened, the Ukrainia breeding program switched over to a spotted tri bitch named Tremis of Rega.


Tremis was sired by Jester of Fortrouge out of Rega’s Sapphire of Bobrowski, born June 26, 1960. This bitch was bred in 1962 to Natarka of Fortrouge and whelped her litter on September 4th. From this came Boris and Bistri of Ukrainia. Bistri was red and white in color, and her brother Boris colored like his dam; it was Boris who carried on the Ukrainia banner in both Great Britain and America.

Boris was bred to a bitch that Miss Dudley had purchased named Wendylou of Yadasar [Ch. Sabre of Yadasar ex Ch. Iliad of Woodcourt] which resulted in the Ukrania “L” litter, whelped May 2, 1966. From this litter came a spotted tri bitch named Lobelia of Ukrainia [who eventually was bred to Sorvan of Fortrouge to produce Xia of Ukrania] and her litter brother, Lasky of Ukrainia.

Lasky of U

It is Lasky who came to America at 12 weeks of age, and it is Lasky who was able to be found behind a number of American breeding programs throughout the years.He was only used at stud three times, but Lasky was the sire of Elain-Ward’s Calico Patches, Sunbarr’s Sascha of Tyara Tam, Nightsong Eurydice and others, all who figured in American pedigrees. Sadly, Dorothy lost contact with Donald Robb, owner of Lasky, and never knew what became of him. She was quite upset about that.

To go back to Ukrainia, Miss Dudley tried breeding Lobelia’s daughter, Xia, to American import Sunbarr Invader of Fortrouge, but Xia lost the pup and was never again bred. Another litter bred at Ukrainia was a bitch named Iskra of Ukrainia, who was mated to the famous Ch. Zomahli Harorshyi, from which Miss Dudley retained a gold sable and white male named Gordey of Ukrainia.

This pretty much rounds out the breeding program at Ukrainia, although certainly not the end of Dorothy Dudley’s love for the breed nor of Borzoi at her establishment. She was not getting any younger and felt that it was no longer


wise to breed. When I “met” Dorothy through abundant correspondence, she still owned a white, black and cream colored bitch named Shelbor Charmaine [Greenhaven Buccaneer ex Keeper’s Shelbor Desirable], who spent many good years with her. Dorothy mentioned that Charmaine reminded her so much of her old line of Ukrainia dogs and was more precious to her for that reason.

The last Borzoi to ever grace the home of Miss Dudley was Fortrouge Myra, who remained with her for some time until it became too difficult for her to maintain her own home. Dorothy had to return Myra to her breeder, Miss Betty Murray, then sold her long time home,  and moved herself into a well maintained nursing home. Myra  produced two litters at Fortrouge, and Dorothy Dudley spent her latter years content where she was, still talking to Borzoi folks, and occasionally attending a dog show. Although Miss Dudley’s Ukrainia dogs did not make a lasting mark on the breed the way so many others had, there is no doubt that her love and dedication for her dogs helped to produce some very fine Borzoi during the kennel’s existence. Dorothy is no longer with us, but her friends remember her well for her genuine appreciation of a good Borzoi.

[This article has been revised to reflect current times, and modified to simplify some details]



Year of Event:



Personal Collections:




Sue Vasick