As a Labrador lover I am fortunate to be part of the most popular breed in America according to AKC registries. Because of the popularity of Labradors there are a lot of available Labrador breed clubs and they hold specialty shows.
So what is a specialty dog show? A specialty is a dog show where a single breed is represented, like Labrador Retrievers. I spent last weekend at the Rose City Labrador Retriever Club’s annual specialty. Some might wonder “what is the appeal of a dog show?”. I admit it, I love dog shows, but Labrador Retriever specialty shows hold a special significance in my heart. The Rose City Labrador Retriever Club specialty has always been a great time for me and my dogs. This year was no exception.
Rose City LRC Specialty is held at the beautiful Champoeg State Park in Oregon. The weather cooperated for most of the weekend with only some light rain falling on Saturday. Otherwise it was perfect weather for a dog show. There were 111 dogs competing in conformation, 14 dogs competing in obedience, and 11 dogs competing in rally. Needless to say there were a lot of Labradors which meant a lot of wagging tails and happy faces.
Why I Love Specialties
A Labrador specialty brings together things that I love. Great friends with great Labradors. Now a specialty is a competition where there are winners and losers but having gone to a lot of these shows I realize that it is not really about the ribbons. Although getting a ribbon of any color is always special at these shows. It is about taking the opportunity to talk to fellow breeders about their dogs, the challenges of breeding, and of course getting together for some late night Karaoke. The friends I have made at these shows are life long friends that add that little extra to my day at the dog shows. The pace is much more relaxed than your average “all-breed” show and Labrador specialties are known for being very casual affairs. So switch out your suit and put on some shorts and head into the ring with your Labbie and join the fun!