I was actually there all day today! I went to watch and help a friend with a Toller in Obedience (they do a weird freestyle portion which requires props and assistants, LOL). She actually took 4th, which was pretty cool.
Linda Brennan and Heart (Lab) took 1st again this year.
Cookie (Jamrah’s Legally Blonde) 6/4/2015
Sassy (Jamrah’s Blonde Ambition) 6/4/2015
Chloe (HIT HC Windsong’s Femme Fatale, UDX, OM2) 6/7/2009
Scully (Coventry's Truth Is Out There, UD, RN) 4/4/1996 - 6/30/2011
Our foster Jolie (UCh Windsong’s Genuine Risk, CDX, WC) 5/26/1999 - 3/2/2014
and Mulder (Coventry’s I Want to Believe, UD, VER, WC, RN) 5/26/1999 - 4/20/2015
Dogs are not produced with cookie cutters either, so they do vary in size and weight, even littermates. I think our breed suffers from a lot of politics. Breeder judges pick friends, all breed judges pick the handlers they know. Some dogs ONLY win at specialties, some only win at all breeds. Even pet labs and hunting labs can be on either end of the spectrum. I've seen folks tout their great dane sized labs weighing 130# like that was a good thing. Unfortunately, it's never going to be a subject we agree on. Heck even in Griffs there are issues. Some of the most winning griffs are tall and carry a lot of bone (not a griff thing) and have a soft coat (hmm...wire-haired is in the NAME for pete's sake!).
Just to play along, my boy looks pretty big when in coat, and since I know what he looks like OUT of coat...not pretty at all!...what do think he weighs in at?
First time pet owner
Chili born 7/21/2013
In the pic he looks well muscled. I don't know his height. I will guess 78lbs. The chocolate standing by the griff at 65 and the griff at 55. How did I do?
IMO generally Labradors that are showing, not always those that are winning at specialty shows, but who are competitive in the show ring are better representations of the written standard as a population than those that are most competitive and/or winning at field trials. Some (certainly not all) dogs that are winning at specialty shows (these are shows where only Labradors compete against other Labradors) or some of those that almost exclusively compete at specialties, have become very exaggerated. These are the dogs that I would characterize as being too short on leg, muzzle; no neck, deep, mastiff-like stops and heavy, heavy bone or overly coated. These dogs occupy the far end of the show spectrum just as the greyhound-like field trial dogs occupy the far end of the field spectrum. There is much in between those two poles.
I'm encouraged by the ever growing number of people who have the time, and means to put MH titles on their CH or GCH Labs. Also there are many who compete in other performance venues at a high level with dogs that do perfectly well in the show ring. I think that shows a commitment to preserving working ability and conformation. I would like to see more field people pursue conformation certificates, which would be the equivalent of show dogs going for their instinct test (WC). It shows an interest at a basic level of preserving the uniqueness of the Labrador look (which is rooted in its purpose as a solidly-built retriever who accompanied a master on foot and delivered game to hand), and not just producing a generic-looking dog with no type that can win at field trials.
When people decry the fact that there are no more dual champions and point to pictures of past dual champs from earlier days in the breed to shame show breeders, I feel like that's not a very fair comparison. First, I'd question whether those early dual champs could really compete against today's top winning field trial champs. The game is much more intense -- field trials are no longer a reflection of a lord's hunt a la Downton Abbey, which is how this breed was originally established in England. Also, from a conformation standpoint, those early dual champion dogs were great for their time, but I think most good breeders on both the field and show side would say they have improved on many aspects of structure since that time. Improvements which reflect what the standard envisions.
Most people will see show Labradors at one or maybe two shows a year on TV. That's simply not representative of a large portion of the dogs that are shown. Many of the dogs that I compete against are equally at home in the field as they are in the show ring. They are personal hunting companions and very birdy. I have a few friends with CH or GCH master hunters. Personally, I think that's enough dog for most people except the most avid trialer. Will they be as fast as a fieldy dog? No. However, Labs were never meant to be competitive with GSPs, or Drahthaars, etc.
This is a photo of a St. John's Dog from the museum in Newfoundland, from whence the progenitors of our breed originated. As you can see, it's a stout, deep-bodied, substantive dog. There is nothing light or weedy about it. I don't agree with extremes in the show ring, and don't think those animals should be rewarded, but there are plenty of show dogs that are IMO good examples of the breed.
It is very subjective. Sometimes people have a hard time estimating as well. Last night someone in my training class asked if 7 month old Bear was over 100 pounds. He's 75 and thin but muscular.
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dxboon, I like the look of your yellow. But as it is a front shot I can't really see what he is made of.
JenC, I never would have guessed your Grizz was that heavy. He doesn't look that much bigger that the Griff. I was just guessing 55 on the griff because that is what my hunting buddies two males are
I'm watching - I love all the waggy tails. They stand so still when they need to, but in between the tails just go so happy.
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