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AGDT Interview's War Eagle Kennel's Harry Hargroves

AGDT:When did you get you first dog?

WEK:I got my first dog in 1968,it was a lightner bred dog that I bought in NC and she went 2 fights the following year and died of old age .By that time I had different and more 
dogs that I started using from there out .But that's it I got my first dog in 1968

AGDT:when did you like to start a young dog.

WEK:Usually around 16 or 18 months.Watch the dog on the chain and it will tell you when they want to start,most of the time that is the way I go.

AGDT:How do you school a dog?

WEK:To school a dog must put him in the pit and get him started with another dog and see what he looks like ... how is actions are and go from there.Normaly you are looking for
speed,balance,wrestling,mouth and take all that into consideration and that will tell you what to do from there on out.

AGDT:Who did you learn the most from in breeding?

WEK:I was pretty well a loner and so I did it on my own made my own mistakes, paid for my own mistakes and I got a pretty good picture on breeding dogs and I think the record from 
that time I shows I did a fair job at it,but I have had some of the best there is out there .

AGDT:Who was your teacher to condition?

WEK:I didn't have a teacher to supervise me in conditioning as I lived far from anybody that had any pit bull dogs what so ever.As I said before I was a loner and made my own
mistakes and I went from there.I got a pretty good system now that works for me.

AGDT:What was the first conditioning program you ever used ?

WEK:It's like I just got through saying, that I made up my own and went with it, and stayed with it and that's the conditioning program I use.

AGDT:What do you think about the use of steroids ?

WEK:I really don't care for the use of steroids but in some cases you have to use them to compete,that's my thoughts on steroids.

AGDT:What do you feed your match dogs ?

WEK:I feed 2 types of meat.I use horsemeat with a rice base and the best thing I have found so are the peak products from FT dodge IA,it really works.If you use those items 
and keep them balance you will have a good dog, that's basically the way I feed my dogs.

AGDT:What is your favorite type of equipment tp work a dog on ?

WEK:I use a treadmill completely ,I don't use anything else;as long as they will work the treadmill.Some stubborn dogs won't work the traedmill so I come up with different method 
to work them and that varies from dog to dog.But I still like the treadmill and it does a good job.

AGDT:When you were getting stared in the dog game,who did you consider the best of the "old timer" ?

WEK:Bob finley would come in there pretty close the first,James Crenshaw was way up there on my list,Jr Bush,JE alexander,and there was some younger people that turned out to be 
pretty good bulldogs that is still in the game, just as I am.

AGDT:Who in your opinion is the best conditioner and handler that you know of?

WEK:The best handler that I know of is Robert Sweatman.He is a competitor,he know what to look for, he know how to win by handling and he could do it all .The best conditioner,I am going to say I 
am.Because look at my record I pretty cotton picking hard to beat,so you take that as it is.

AGDT:What was the best match you ever saw?

WEK:I have seen several really good matches but I think one of the best I ever been at,was when Robert Sweatman's suzie dog and Irish Jerry's Pool Hall Red dog,I think this was one 
of the better ones.Also this little dog in Florida named Pistol that belonged to the Holland Boys and he was a very good dog and tough matches every time.So neither one of these dogs had a one-side 
push over and so I consider these two of the best matches I ever seen.

AGDT:What was the best dog you ever matched into ?

WEK:The best dog I ever matched into I believe was Jackson's Pepper dog.The reason I think she was the best , she had everything you needed to win.Extremely hard mouth,real quick,strong,and a real
good producer.I will stick with V.Jackson's Pepper dog

AGDT:What is the best dog you ever beat.

WEK:I don't really know what's the best dog I ever beat,as I beat quite a few and some were better than other.Probably some of the better ones didn't look like that good of a 
match,but they were really good bred,good tough honest bulldogs.One of them was the Razor dog that went into Gus from James Crenshaw Kennels and was matched by some boys out of Nashville Tennessee,now 
that was a jam up dog.He didn't really look too that night,but it seems to be a pattern when they go into Gus,they don't look good.

AGDT:What's the best dog to beat you?

WEK:I am going back to Jackson's Pepper dog,she was as near perfect as I ever seen, she knew waht she was out there to do and she knew how to do it and I would like to have a barn full of them any time.So 
again I stick with Jackson's Pepper dog.

AGDT:What type of dog do you prefer?

I like a staight ahead quick smart dog.They are really hard to beat and I am just one that is tuck on speed.If they are fast they get the job done .If they are slow they get the job done 
,take away from them.

AGDT:What type of dog you not like?

WEK:I don't like a dog that lies around and try to survive and come back and win at last.The name of the game is action.A dog that lays around with skin hold hanging on is not action
and is open to much punishment and in my opinion can not live long enough to be a good dog.

AGDT:I am going to ask you the name of greats that went in the past you may have seen and your comments on them.Below are War Eagles comments on each dog we asked him about.

AGDT:STP's Grand Champion Buck?

WEK:I didn't see GR CH Buck go at all,but any dog that wins 6 matches and up has got to be pretty good and from what I heard he was better then pretty good,he was a great dog.

AGDT:Garrett's SDJ Champion Jeep?

WEK:I seen Champion Jeep go three times and he was better than average,but he was not the best dog in his litter and he was not at the top pitbulldogs.Even though he has a real good record for producing he 
wasn't that great himself.The best dogs in Jeep's litter was Sweatman's ch Holly and Crenshaw SDJ Ch Charlie,Charlie was a better dog as he had more mouth,more speed ,and better ability and he was jus an overall
better dog than Jeep.I think Holly was about tied for number one.

AGDT:Tramp Red Boy?

I know nothing about Red Boy as far as action goes,he turned out to be a good producerI have no knowledge of any action coming from him so I will leave that upto some one else.

AGDT:Holcomb's Champion yellow Jhon?

WEK:Yellow Jhon was a pretty good dog,he had one fault that I didn't like.That was he lay around and would come back at the hour mark and he did good that in those days.Don't think you could live enought
to do that nowadays.So I am going to have to say that Yellow Jhon was not a first class dog to me.

AGDT:Crenshaw 's SDJ Champion Rascal?

WEK:I saw ch Rascal go 2 times and both were earned wins and he had what it takes to win he had an extremely good mouth and good wrestling ability.He was a little lacking on the speed that is only thing that I
would say could be improved on.I don't think Rascal would have quite to Skye's CH Sampson if he had been grown,cause he was 16 months old when he did quit as he was a puppy.
I went on the see him later and when he was fourth fight there was to quit showing in Rascal and it went was taking him out to early. 

AGDT:Davi's SDJ Champion Midnight Cowboy?

WEK:I seen him one time and he was extremely game and had a quick mouth and could bite real good.But he wasn't in the best of shap that night and he had a hard for well over an hour and he won the fight in a little
2 hours.I like Cowboy then and still do.

AGDT:tant's Grand Champion Yellow?

WEK:He was a fairly good pitdog,he made Grand Champion and that said a lot.He was one that liked to lay around and then come back and win,which that part I didn't like .He turned out to be a first class dog and he was
real good producer.The Yellow dog I think was up there in the top of all bulldogs.

AGDT:Grand Champion Hellbend?

WEK:I refereed three of his 5 fights,he was a good all around dog,had an extremely good mouth and good ability.He was not to quick but he just seemed to have what it took to win.Lots of people try to whip him cause they thought
they could,but they came short.So I will say that hell brend ranks up there Charlie and Yellow and a few more of those dogs

AGDT:Otter's SDJ Champion Tonka Bear?

WEK:I never seen Tonka Bear go,but I know he went up hill from 48 pounds to 53 pounds and whipped a good bulldog.He was extremely game and was good at everything except he didn't
have any mouth,that's the only fault I know of Tonka Bear.His owner Otter agrees with that statement,he tried to breed some mouth in by breeding Hell Bend into that line and get more mouth and he did some accomplishement with it .
I will say that Tonka Bear was defintely worth feeding.

AGDT:Montain man 's Champion Homer ?

WEK:I don't know anything about Homùer but I do know that Mtn Man had 2 Ch Homers.I don't know nothing about either one except they were real good dogs by the accomplishments they made 
and I will leave that up to Mtn Man to finish.

AGDT:Wood's Snooty?

WEK:I seen him go one I referred that fight.I went over 2 hours and he was an average dog at the best,he started scratching and he stood in the middle of the pit.Snooty was on a dog that 
some people called great,but I didn't cause all Ox did wax survive an out scratch Snooty but he won the fight.

AGDT:SDJ Ch HOneybunch?

WEK:Honeybunch I know hardly anything about,other than the fact she was a good producer.She was off a line of dogs that had good mouths and good ability.I have a lot of stuff is down off of Honeybunch and they are really hard to beat
and I like every one of them.I think Crenshaw and Finley liked them and they are two of the best to make judgement on them.

AGDT:Finley's SDJ Champion Bo?

WEK:I owned Finley's Bo,I bought him from Finley after they made the Jeep breeding.The first breeding I made I got Outmaw off that breeding,and I think that Outlaw was better than anything in the Jeep breeding.Basically 
it was a Jeep dog with mouth,both lines are similar dogs and they are bred really close not to be out of the same litter.I think that Finley's Bo was the best producing dog that as been.Including Patrick stuff or anybody else's stuff,
cause he was bred less than 100 times his entire career.These other dogs have been bred that and thousands.I am going to say that Finley's Bo was the best producer that has ever been and anybody that know him and
what he has producer will have to agree.People say that Bo quite,I don't think he did.When I bought Bo ,Crenshaw told me what the deal was on Bo losing, I won't repeat it.I do know he did produce,I do know that the person
that was in the pit that night is a number one crook when it comes to bulldogs he is the last man I would want to make an opinion on anything,and he know who I m speaking of ,so I won't go any further with that.

AGDT:Harry you have been close to many great dogs can you tell the readers about some of them?

Grand Champion Molly Bee:Molly Bee was bred by James Edwards ,I bought her from James as a young dog.I matched her 8 times, she won 8 fights, she was an extremely good dog that you couldn't stand for her to be with.... she 
whipped a lot of good dog people and some of them I don't remember their names,but I knows she went from Louisana to north Carolina.Up and down the east coast and took on anyone that came along and she whipped anyone 
she went into.Her shortest fight was three bites in it , and they picked up the other dog.That was against Atlas Brewer from NC and he had the dog to beat her,so he told anyone in the country at the time.But he found out he was 
wrong.As to wath happened to her bloodine it has been washed away just like many of the old line and there are very few lines that are going strong.Her blood just passed on and around like many other did...I still like the stuff that 
came from her back then even though I got some of it now that's not nearly as good as she,so I am going to have to say that that's pretty well washed out.

Grand Champion Outlaw:Outlaw was bred by me , he was bred to daughter of Honeybunch and Rascal and he was an extremely good bulldog and wound up winning seven fights .I matched him 6 of the seven , probably the best win had was against B.
Adams in Kentucky In 1986 ,and at the time I sold him to T Smith in Alabama and he bred him from that time till he sold him to Ricky Jones.Then Ricky matched a 37 pound dog against a 42 pound dog and Outlaw won the fight ,but they both 
did not recover.I would say that's his best and hardest fight ,the one I had were fairly easy.The offsprings that he has put on the ground and it is some of the best.I've got a yard full of it , and we use it all the time and I've got two
or three out there that's going to be hard to beat that is open to anybody just call my phone numberThere is alot of rumble going around about certain dogs and Gus is one of theme,he don't back up all you have to do is call my phone number
and we 'll see what's going to happen.And this goes for anybody,anytime so anybody that hears this reads this just call me .That's about all I can say about the Outlaw stuff is that it's going strong and I m staying with it.

AGDT:Grand Champion Rufus

WEK:Rufus was bred by Mr .townsend and me down in Florida,he had a tree problem and didn't have any teeth when he was young and he won six fights.They were with hardly any teeth or no teeth.Im speaking of the four canines .Rufus had it all
and as far as I know he was game and I mean deep game,but it was never proven.He had the one thing I really like in a bulldog and that's quickness.He was extremely quick,hard mouth and good wrestler and other combination that you might
need to win.The best line he has got going now is Hargrove's Croc o Moc,he is producing like Rufus did,he was as good as Rufus just a large model.Anybody that has got any Rufus dogs now will tell you that tey are in good shap and still 
strong and I have some on my yard that are match able and ready to go any time.That's about all I can say for Rufus and Croc o Moc as they are both dead and gone.

Hargrove's Spanky.

WEK.Spanky was not a good pit dogs he won one fight in 2:17 and after the fight I gave him back to the person that I bred him which was Atlas Brewer in Wilson NC.He had no mouth speed ,he didn't have any bite,he was clumsy and couldn't 
work him.That is a trend that goes with the Snooty dogs,is they won't take work.I just didn't like him so I gave him away,even though that he turned out to be one of the better producers of the Snooty dogs in this part of the country.He 
pruduced better then Snooty did or anything below Snooty as I don't know nothing about them above him.I'm going to say Spanky would have a flunking remark on a pit and an excellent remark on a producer.That's about the best I can say on Spanky 
and the boys that owned him liked him and that's all that counts.As I said earlier in this interview that we are making that Snooty quit which he did and It was against Obnoxious Ox in SC and he quit in 2:13 minutes,he was un hurt he was just 
tired.He stood in the middle of the pit and took the count.Ox was the winner and I don't think he was any better then Snooty was because neither one of them did any work all night long .So I'm going to say that that should have been a draw.That's about 
all I have to say about anything from Spanky and Snooty.

AGDT:When breeding dogs what do you concider when deciding who to breed a gyp to?

WEK:I do my breeding basically two way one of this line breeding and the other is complete out cross breeding.I have reasons for every time I make those descions.If i'm line breeding I look for speed first mouth and abilite second and a few other things 
like stamania air and wrestling abilities.Which those are minor If I can get three out of that group but I want speed first ,gameness second and mouth third.You can win with that combination so I will stick with that.

AGDT:Your thoughts on breeding cold,cur and unstarted dogs?

WEK:I don't breed cold dogs,but I have probably breed many cur but at the time I did I didn't know he was a cur.Once I found it out he was no longer bred and longer out.Unstated dog I don't bred young dogs I wait til they are up,tested and ready
to go I breed them.Like I said everybody has got curs and sometimes they turn cur after you breed them

AGDT:what was the best breeding you ever made?

WEK:I'm going to have to say is when I bred Willy to Jeepster and produced Gus.I think that Gus is the best 47 dog around and if anyone wants to find out and different all they got to do is call me.I don't push anybody into any matches,but 
I don't back up for anybody in any matches.Gus is open at 47/48 pounds and we will leave it at that.I have several Outlaw dogs out there that are not as good as Gus,but they worth taking to the wood.

AGDT:Beside yourself who would put up as the top breeder?

WEK:Carl Mims would rate up there among the top breeders.He has been doing it a long time,he has got a lot of good dogs out there,lot of good dogs have gone into the wrong hands and he don't get recognition for it.But I think any good dog man could get good
dogs and put Carl Mims on the map good .I m going to stick with his breeding program because I know he know what he is doing and he is putting good dogs out there all the time .I don't use Carl's dogs hardly any at all because they have a big heads
and they are slow.I don't like a slow dog and that's me and the only reason I don't like a Carl Mims dog.But I still think he is one of the better out there and we will leave it at that.

AGDT:Who are some of the honest people out there selling dogs that you recommend dealing with?

WEK:To answer that question I will have to go back to Carl Mims again he's one of the most honest people I know.He lets you buy your dogs he don't try to sell them to you,he as a good dogs to sell and he is doing real good at it and I think that 
right now he is one of the better people to be dealing with.There are some other people out there just as good ,but I don't know them,but I know they are out there.I am only familiar with the people in this area and I can't speak for the people in Texas and 
out in that part of the country I am sure there are good dogs and good dog people out there ,but I am still going to stick with Carl Mims.

AGDT:Can you tell us the difference between today's dogmen and the dogmen of yesterday?

WEK:The big difference between the two groups is the older dog people came with a good bulldog to fight bulldogs.Today people come and the first thing they want to do is try collect a forfeit or argue about the scales or argue about anything
they can think of,they don't come to do what they are suppose to be there for they come to try to win easy money.That just don't work and it puts a bad taste in everybody's mouth that is concerned with it ,so I am going to say that good honest people make the better 
dog man and there are very few of those out there.

AGDT:What advice would you give to someone just starting out?

WEK:Do your homework , research ,read all the book that you can find like the Sporting Dog Journal ,Fat Bill's book and several other one s that you can find.See who is in there that sells dog,see who is using their dogs and make up your mind to the type of dog you want.
You going to have to pay for it, so just face that fact but go after it,get what you want.Do what you can with it and you will be better off then buying cheap dogs and hoping for luck.So just do your homework and go from there.

AGDT:What is your biggest mistake in the game?Have you ever sold the wrong dog, not bought the right dog or waited to long to pick one up?As it is easy for us all see you accomplishments, maybe there is something that can be learned from the mistakes we all make?

WEK:On this question I am going to read the whole question..."What is your biggest mistake in the game?"Well it list several mistake down below that and I have made them says,"have you ever sell the wrong dog?I have done that."Not bought the right dog"I have done that.
"Wait to long to pick one up",I am guilty of that also."As it for us all to see you accomplishments"...then you have to be there to see them.I think the biggest mistake I have ever made is overrating other people's dogs.They are not just the quality they think they are,that's 
because they didn't do their home work,didn't pay attention to who was guiding them in their conditioning.They didn't learn to be sportsman and if you do all these things wrong you are in bad trouble.Sportsmanship is about gone in today's games,as it is too easy to haggle over weights
and forfeits and so forth.I am going to say if you want to be a dog man do your homework get the right stuff to work with.Do it right .Be a sportsman .Then when you lose be a good looser, you won't win them all,so I am going back again be a good sportsman and you will win more.
So the accomplishments that are made then will make you make more accomplishments from that time on out.So just read and do the best you can .I sold Outlaw in 1986 and I should have kept him,because he was producing extremely game dogs but hardly had any mouth but at everything else.
The reason I made that mistake was because I had Rufus on the yard.Rufus was producing with the mouth a complete package and I didn't need both dogs at the same time.So I made the mistake of selling Outlaw,wich I should have kept.Then to the thing about picking dogs up,when you think the other dog
is quitting and you are behind you wait to see if the other dog is going to scratch .If you wait to long you have made the fatal mistake of not saving your dog.This has happened to me and it happens to everyone else.You can learn from those mistakes and if it's 10 minutes when your dog is in trouble,nothing wrong with picking him up,cause now a days 20 minutes is too late.So I would say pick them up when you see you can't win,and I hope those mistakes and the good points you will take and do something with them.We need a lot of good men out there and you have to do some of the things
I have said in here to be a good dog man and that's to be a sportsman and be honest and don't make the wrong decision.I have sold the wrong dogs as I just mentioned I didn't buy some dogs that I should have ,several different reasons.Front money was part of the reasons I didn't buy them, the other part was that I didn't really need it so I would wait till later and that was a big mistake .Some of those dogs are so far back that I don't really remember who they were,except one them was the little Boomer dog from Glenn Loyd that I should have bought and didn't and he turned out to be one of the best producers all times.It was in the Boomer line and many people don't use them so they were never aware of what missed but I knew that I had messed up.

AGDT:Can you share a funny story from the past?

WEK:This one may not be funny,but it's the truth.Robert Sweatman,Larry Jarrett and me went to some fights one night.The two dogs came from the bathroom and were set in the pit ,Robert identified one of the dogs that come from Irish Jerry that they had seen quit in 20 minutes two different times.Irish Jerry sold this dog for a match dog.The other dog we knew nothing about but we knew how sorry this one was,so we started laying odds.After we three had bet over 3,000 dollars and it was in the last of the 1970's which was a lot of money at that time.We found out the price of the fight was 50.00 dollars , those dogs were fighting a 50 dollars bet and we had over 3,000 side money.This dog that Irish Jerry sold that had quit in less 20 minutes in a roll won this match in 2:35 minutes.The only difference between the roll and the match was that when Irish Jerry had him he got bit,when he was in the pit that night ther was no biting going on it was all wrestling .That dog would scratch until he died as long as you didn't hurt him,but I still think that if you had hurt him he would have went home in 15 minutes.

AGDT:What do you think this new century holds for the dog game?

WEK:I don't know the answer to that question because of the new type of people will got coming in and I am going back to the lack of sportmanship.With the law the way they are it all looks kind of down hill,but if you keep going go in a small groups.Don't go to the bars talking, don't advertise anything you doing to  anybody,keep it to yourself.Go do your thing ,do your best and you will come home a winner .You got to be some of the things I mentioned before you have got to have an honest outlook on life and especially with the dogs and you got to be a good sportsman .Above all you got to be a good dog person,cause the dogs are out there and the good dog people are winning,they are beating other good dogs that have lesser dog people behind them.Keep that in mind and you can go far ahead.