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Ch Honeybunch (ROM)

The story of Champion Honeybunch (ROM) is written as all fightingdog stories are, and that is by the dog themselves. What can be added to the accomplishments Honeybunch has made as a winner, a champion, and a producer? Honeybunch, today, is regarded as the most influential factor in the history of dog-fighting; her amazing ability to produce has proclaimed her the very top producer of all times. It is with great pleasure that I recall some of the events of her life, in this exclusive story for the American Gamedog Times. I purchased Honeybunch from Maurice Carver in 1972 as a 5-month-old pup. She was very active, as Maurice had told me; I placed her on the chain and watched as developed into one of the best-looking bitches I have ever owned. Honeybunch was a looker, super-active on the chain, and, when rarely caught standing, stood like a great show horse, with her legs spread wide apart. Honeybunch was a great-looking bitch but was every bit as good as she looked. Over the years I have had many people and many fanciers ask questions in regard to Honeybunch's record, ability, style, and general behaviour. I will try to answer some of those questions in this story THE PIG PICKIN Some matches were held in the Carolinas in the mid-1970s. There was a pig-picking before the matches were to take place. This show was magnificent

because both Ch Rascal and Ch Honeybunch were confiscated as a result of a bust after the fights were held. The complete story of the rescue of these two greats is not to be told at this time, but both Honeybunch and Rascal were saved from the wrath of the authorities and were returned to the friendly pit bull dog environment. The complete story of the rescue has been told and will be documented later. RECORD Champion Honeybunch was matched three times, winning all three. She was conditioned and handled by me in all three of her fights. I have read some advertisements saying she was a 5-time winner in some old magazines; these ads are sometimes confused with a dog's actual record. ABILITY Many great dogs have been criticized for their ability, for one reason or another. No dog-man that ever saw Ch Honeybunch in action can say that she cut any slack to any of her opponents. In all her matches, she took charge from the word PIT and dominated her opponents. No dog would, or could, scratch back into her after 40 minutes. Honeybunch was what we in the game call a game player. Like Tyson in the boxing world, you may not win them all, but the opponent had better come to play. One person who can testify to Honeybunch's biting power is Rex B, the judge for Honeybunch's 2nd match. He was accidentally bitten by her whilst unfanging her. Rex was working with a breaking stick when Honeybunch clamped onto his thumb. When it appeared to me that the dogs were free, I quickly turned Honeybunch from her opponent when Rex said, "Jerry, she's still got my thumb". It had been quite a struggle to separate these two fast mouth bitches and I didn't realise Honeybunch was still clamped tight onto Rex's thumb. The Old Man on the Mountain replaced Rex as a referee and the match resumed. Rex is the kind of man who would not yell out or protest or make a big scene, but for the next few days he realised why the Hispanics call the thumb, "the fat finger". A LESSON LEARNED A valuable lesson was taught to me by Honeybunch when she was still a young gyp.

A well-renowned dog-man of the area came to my place to roll a female when Honeybunch was 18 months of age. I was eager to show off my latest Carver acquisition so took Honeybunch off the chain and faced her with the experienced brindle bitch. The brindle crossed, took hold of Honeybunch, and started to shake. Honeybunch just rolled her big dark brown eyes at me as if to say, "What's going on?" The brindle's handler yelled, "I'd shoot that bitch, she won't even fight". I was too proud of my bitch to resort to anything like that - after all, she came from "the Old Master", and I placed her back on her chain and decided to wait until another day to show her off. PRODUCTION Honeybunch was blessed with the amazing ability to bestow upon her offspring her own ability to perform, as well as produce. She was easy to breed, produced large litters, and raised most of them. This trait, coupled with the uncanny ability to reproduce her likeness, has proclaimed her the greatest producer of all time. Her mating career was started after the poor showing verses the brindle female previously mentioned. The choice of studs to be bred to her would also play a large role in her rapid advance to stardom. The excellent selection of Ch Bo, Ch Rascal, and Ch Otis by James Crenshaw, coupled with some older siblings off Trim Moody and Oso Negro from my place caused a pyramid effect and spread the Honeybunch fame around the world. I bred Honeybunch to Trim Moody when she came into heat the 2nd time. Trim had a very impressive win in 56 minutes before the mating. During the match he suffered damage to his private parts, but came from the bottom to win. I had tested Trim Moody before this match and determined that he was dead game. This mating produced only three surviving males, and all three became great match dogs. They were Gr Ch Weehunt, Joker, and Bully Bob. After Honeybunch weaned this litter I tried her again and really liked what I saw - she was rough as any female I had ever witnessed. Her test was her 1st match and she proved her worth by taking out a very good opponent and scratched so hard that if her foe did not meet her halfway, they would be knocked back to the corner wall. I contacted Dr K Wood in an effort to try breed my supped-up little match bitch to Oso Negro. I asked if he would agree to a pick; it suited the doc ok, and I was just as pleased, as Oso Negro was building a reputation by kicking bulldogs around the circuit at the time.

We stuck these 2 together and produced a litter of nine, but only two pups. When the picking time came, the doc said, "Jerry, I sure would hate to take one of those pretty males; I would just as soon take 2 females". I sent Doc home with 2 bitches that produced several match dogs as well as reputable producers. FACT Honeybunch returned to the pit to win 2 more impressive battles. The second of these was the pig picking match famous for the big bust. The opponent in this match was conditioned and handled by Scotty Todd; he was using a good little black female of 38 lbs. This was a little heavy for our heroine, but I felt that I would sport a pound or so. I was right; she cut this one down in 28 minutes. One of the pleasures of owning Ch Honeybunch was the superior feeling obtained from watching her work. She was always the same in her matches rolling, controlling, and always dominating her victim. By the mid-1970s I decided to sell off some of my stock, but didn't want to put Honeybunch on the open market. James Crenshaw had a deep interest in the Carver family as I did; he was very dedicated and a known eye for a good one. Honeybunch's fighting days were over, but she was in the prime of her producing life. James and I reached an agreement of dale and both of us reaped the harvest of the fruits of his great vine even up to today. TRUTH The world of the American gamedog was upgraded by the life of Ch Honeybunch; the dog fraternity will continue to improve as a result of her existence. The augments in regard to her offspring will continue for years to come. QUESTIONS The question has been asked many times: which of Honeybunch's litters was the best? Which of the offspring was the best? These questions will still be asked after all of us are long gone. Crenshaw and I agree on the complicated nature of this question - even after seeing the results of each litter. My view is, how do you - or where do you - find a litter that can compare to the records of Ch Jeep, Ch Charlie, and Ch Holly? 11 wins and no losses were recorded by the trio. Honeybunch's 1st litter, however, in which all 3 males were matched, won 10 and only lost 2. The accomplishments of Gr Ch Snake cannot be

ignored either, in the search for the best. Otis also produced others of recognition in this litter. When it comes down to the question of which pup was best, it really puts you in a bind. Crenshaw and I agree that Ch Charlie was a better athlete than Jeep, but that the Jeep dynasty is now in full bloom, with the prime status and unprecedented 15-point ROM ranking that is sure to go higher. Gr Ch Weehunt cannot be overlooked either. Although he was an impressive barn-storming type of dog, he always gave me his best and won 6 consecutive matches. His 1st win was at Crenshaw's place when matched into a 5-time winner called Tiger, a veteran at the time of 6 matches. The Florida Boys told me that Tiger had been matched when he was 18 months old and was picked up after making a good showing again the older and possibly better dog. Tiger returned to win 5 and met Weehunt for his 7th time out. Weehunt took a pretty good beating and came from the bottom to win in 1hr20m. I was once accused of picking a soft spot for Weehunt when I agreed to match into a 1-time winner of the Volunteer State instead of a 2-time winner of the Low Lands. Well as fate would have it, Weehunt defeated the 1-time winner and the 2-time winner lost to another 2-time winner. Weehunt then went on to beat the winner of that match when he went for his 4th triumph. I once won 2 matches in 3 weeks when I substituted Weehunt for another male I had matched at 38 lbs. I matched Weehunt at 37lbs just three weeks earlier. He got lucky and ran DD from Florida's entrant out of the square in 5 minutes. Weehunt's record was 6 and 0, but to say he was the best in the company of Holly, Jeep, and Snake is dilemma that defies a simple solution. Ch Holly ranks among the best bitches I have ever seen and in my mind, may be Honeybunch's best offspring. Honeybunch also produced litters from Oso Negro and Trim Moody, yielding broodstock that in turn produced the famous Mountain Man's Homer strain, Snakeman's Gr Ch Pedro, Flim Flam, Ch Bubba, Ch Sandman (grandson of Jeep and Rascal Jr), and many more. Every time you open your Sporting Dog Journal there is a new champion with our star Honeybunch in the 3rd, 4th, and now 5th generation, and another notch or 2 added to Jeep's ROM status CONTROVERSY Yes, even the greatest of the great must also be subjected to the possibility of someone who may enter a bogus name onto a pedigree. The last question I will try to answer in this story, and the bottom line, is, "Ok, Maurice, if Honeybunch really was sired by a Spanish pointer, could you please send me one more just like her!"

After Honeybunch's impressive wins I called Maurice to brag. I told him, "She sure can bite". He replied, "Well, God-damn son, she's got a license too!" ACKNOWLEDGEMENT The fame of Honeybunch would not have been as vivid if it had not been for the contribution of several breeders, including Crenshaw and myself. The other that were key breeders of this family have been James Garrett, Gene Smith, George Wilcox, M Stover, E Reece, and a host of others who believed in this line and have helped in the advance of this famous strain of dogs. Last but most, The San Antonio Rose, as Don Mayfield called him, The Immortal Maurice Carver. FUTURE It has been said that Honeybunch could produce match dogs from a German shepherd, and I can't deny or confirm that. I will say, "I guess there will never be another one like her". We will continue to breed and somewhere in the back of our minds we will hope to find one who will fill her collar. In closing, I want to relate to you something that happened the other day as I was recently visiting a local Wal-Mart. I overheard a conversation between 2 young men - one of them was apparently a pit bull owner and the other youngster a friend or an owner. The conversation went something like this: "Your friend got good dogs, man?" "Yeah man, he has some real rolling stones." "He got any Dibo blood?" "Yeah man, I don't know if I heard of that one or not." "How about Honeybunch?" "Yeah man, I've heard of that one." I nodded to the as I pushed my shopping trolley by them, as my mind went back to remembering the great Champion Honeybunch (ROM).

Article written by Irish Jerry for the American Gamedog Times