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    What to expect at the Golden Retriever speciality show taking place in Ooty next weekend

    Every dog breed has its own character and no true dog lover would compare one to another. That’s probably why the Golden Retriever Club of Chennai (GRCC, since 2002) has been organising speciality shows for their breed, to coincide with the National Championship that’s organised by the South of India Kennel Club (SIKC). Held every year at the Government Arts College grounds in Ooty, the SIKC Show, in which several breeds participate, takes place on May 9-10, while May 8 is dedicated to speciality shows for Golden Retrievers, Great Danes and Beagles. “There are about 20 dogs participating from Chennai,” says Vina Narasimhamurthy, past president of the GRCC. And for dog lovers like Ameera D’costa, this is a great opportunity to see some of her favourite breeds. “My favourites are the Labrador, Golden Retriever, Alsatian and Cocker Spaniel,”  says D’costa, whose Labrador, Lushka, spends every summer in Ooty.
    These shows are more importantly about spreading awareness on what a pure breed is all about, feels Arun Varma, a Golden Retriever owner. “Especially in India where unscrupulous breeding is rampant, because of which the traits and temperament of the breed are lost. I’ve actually come across an aggressive Golden Retriever that is a result of such breeding,” he explains, adding, “I hope shows like this will teach the public to think twice before buying from a non-registered breeder.”
    This year, the GRCC, is bringing down Doreen Mcgugan, the chairperson of the Golden Retriever Club of Scotland, to judge the show. “You will see some excellently groomed dogs that are passionately looked after,” says Narasimhamurthy, adding that if you want to learn to show your Golden Retriever, the club teaches owners every year, a few months before the competition, “usually around December or January.” On May 8, from 3 pm onwards. Details: 08754808304
    — Ryan Peppin

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