The story of CHAMPION HONEYBUNCH is written as all fighting dog stories, 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 five month old pup. She was very active as Maurice had told me, I placed her on the chain and watched as she 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 to ask questions in regard to HONEYBUNCH’S record, ability, style and general behavior. 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 seventies. There was a pig pickin (this is a cliche for BBG) before the matches were to take place. This show was significant because both the great CHAMPION RASCAL and CHAMPION HONEYBUNCH were cofiscated as a result of a bust after the fights were held. The complete story of the rescue of these two great a not be told at this time, but both HONEYBUNCH and RASCAL were saved from the wrath of the authorities and were returned to the friendly pitbull dog environment. The complete story of the rescue has been told ad will be documented later.
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 five time winner in some old magazines, these ads are sometimes confused with a dogs actual record.
Many great dogs have been criticized for their ability for one reason or another. No dogman that ever saw CHAMPION 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 could or would scratch back into her after fourty minutes. HONEYBUNCH was what we call in the game a main 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. Rex was the judge for HONEYBUNCH’S second match and was accidently bitten by her while 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 still got my thumb”. It had been quite a struggle to seperate these two fast mouth bitches and I didn’t realize HONEYBUNCH was still clamped tight to Rex’s thumb. The Old Man on the Mountain replaced Rex as a referee and the match resumed. Rex who is the kind of man who would not yell out in protest or make a big scene, but for the next few days he realized why the Hispanics call the thumb, “Fat Finger”.
A LESSON LEARNED:
A vauable 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 aquisition so I took HONEYBUNCH off the chain and faced her up 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 to say, what’s going on. The brindle’s handler yelled, “I’d shoot that bitch, she won’t even fight”. I was to 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.
HONEYBUNCH was blessed with the amazing ability to bestow upon her offsprings her own ability to preform as well as produce. HONEYBUNCH was easy to breed, produce large litters of puppies ad raised most of them. This trait coupled with the uncanny ability to reproduce her likeness, has proclaimed her the greatest producer of all times.
Her mating career was started after the poor showing verses the brindle female previously mentioned. The choices of studs to be bred to her would also play a large roll in her rapid advance to stardom. The excellent selection of CHAMPION BO, CHAMPION RASCAL and CHAMPION OTIS by JamesCrenshaw coupled with some older brothers and sisters off of TRIM MOODY and OSONEGRO 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 second time. TRIM had a very impressive win in 56 minutes before the mating. During the match TRIM suffered damage to his private parts, but came from the bottom to win. I had tested TRIM MOODY before this match ad determined that he was dead game. This mating produced only three surviving males ad all three males became match dogs they were GRAND CHAMPION WEEHUNT, JOKER and BULLYBOB. After HONEYBUNCH weaned this litter I tried her again and really liked what I saw. She was as rough as any female I had ever witness. Her test was her first 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 half way, they would be knocked back to the corner wall.
I contacted Dr. Kimsey Wood in an effort to try breed my suped-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 bull dog asses around the circuit, at the time. We stuck these two together and produced a litter of nine pups, but only two males. When the picking time came, the doctor said, “Jerry, I sure would hate to take one of those pretty males, I would just as soon take two females”. I sent Doc home with two bitches that produced several match dogs as well as reputable producers.
HONEYBUNCH returned to the four squares to win two more impressive battles. The second of these was the Pig Pickin 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 at a weight of 38 1/2 lbs. This was a little heavy for our heroine, but I felt that I would spot a pound or so. I was right, she cut this one down in twenty-eight minutes.
One of the pleasures of owning CHAMPION HONEYBUNCH was the superior feeling obtained from watching her work. She was always the same in all her matches, rolling, controlling and always dominating her victim.
By the mid-seventies 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 sale and both of us reaped the harvest of the fruits of his great vine even up to today.
The world of THE AMERICAN GAMEDOG was upgraded by the life of CHAMPION HONEYBUNCH. The dog fraterity will continue to improve as a result of her exsistence. The augments in regard to her offspring will continue for years to come.
The question has been asked many times which of HONEYBUNCH’S litters was the best? Which of her offspring was the best? These questions will still be asked after all of us are long gone. Crenshaw and I agree on the complexing 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 champions JEEP, CHARLIE and HOLLY? Eleven wins and no losses were recorded by the trio. HONEYBUNCH’S first litter however in which all three males were matched, won ten and lost only two. The accomplishments of GRANDCHAMPION SNAKE can not be ignored either in the search for the best, OTIS also produced others of recogition, in this litter.
When it comes down to the big question of which offspring was best? It really puts you in a bind. Crenshaw and I agree CHAMPION CHARLIE was a better athlete than JEEP, but that the JEEP dynasty is now in a full bloom with the prime status and the unprecedented 15 point ROM ranking and is sure to go higher. GRAND CHAMPION WEEHUNT can not be overlooked either. Although he was ot an impressive, barn storming type of dog. he always gave me his best and won six consecative matches verses the competition of the time. His first win was at Crenshaw’s place when matched into a five time winner called TIGER. TIGER was a veteran of six matches at the time. 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 against the older and possibly better dog. TIGER returned to win five and met WEEHUNT for his seventh time out. WEEHUNT took a pretty good beating and came from the bottom to win in one hour and twenty eight minutes. I was once accused of picking a soft spot for WEEHUNT when I agreed to match into a one time winner in the Volunteer state, instead of a two time winner in the Low Lands. Well as fate would have it, WEEHUNT defeated the one time winner, the two time winner from the Low Lands lost to another two time winner. WEEHUNT then went on to beat the winner of that match when he went for his fourth triumph. I once won two matches in three weeks when I substituted WEEHUNT for another male I had matched at 38 1/2 lbs. I matched WEEHUNT at 37 lbs just three weeks earlier. He got lucky and ran DD from Florida’s entrant out of the square in 5 minutes. WEEHUNT record was six and zero, but to say he was the best in the company of CHAMPION HOLLY, CHAMPION JEEP or GRAND CHAMPION SNAKE is a dilemna that defies a simple solution.
CHAMPION 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, RASCAL and TRIM MOODY. Yielding brood stock that in turn produced the famous MOUNTAIN MAN’S CHAMPION HOMER strain, SNAKEMAN’S GRAND CHAMPION PEDRO, FLIM FLAM, CHAMPION BUBBA, CHAMPION SANDMAN (SANDMAN was also a grandson of JEEP as well as RASCAL JR.) and many more. Everytime you open your Sporting Dog Journal there is a new champion with our star HONEYBUNCH in the third, fourth or now fifth generation and another notch or two added to JEEP’S ROM status.
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 of the is: “OK Maurice, If HONEYBUNCH really was sired by a Spanish Pointer, could you please send me one more just like her!”
After one of HONEYBUNCH’S impressive wins I called Maurice to brag of her win. I told Maurice, “She sure can bite” he replied, “Well God Dam sonnnn, she’s got a license too.”
The fame of HONEYBUNCH would not be as vivid had it not been for the many contributions of severl breeders including Crenshaw and myself. The others that were key breeders of this family have been James Garrett, Gene Smith, George Wilcox, M. Stover, E. Reece along with a host of others who believed in this line and has 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.
It has been said that HONEYBUNCH could produce match dogs from a German Shepard and I can’t deny or confirm that. I will say, “I quess 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 two young men, one of them was a apparently a Pitbull owner and the other youngster a friend of an owner. The conversation went something like this: “Your friend got good dogs man?” Reply: “Yeah man, he has got some real rollin stones”. Owner: “He got any Dibo blood, Blood?” Reply: “Yeah man, I don’t know if I heard of that one or not.” Owner: “How about HONEYBUNCH?” Reply: “Yeah man, I’ve heard of that one.” I nodded to them as I pushed my shopping cart loaded with Ole Roy by them as my mind went to remembering the great CHAMPION HONEYBUNCH R.O.M.
This article was written by Irish Jerry in the American Gamedog Times.