Speaking of the AKC/More ?'s/pg 5
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  1. #1
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    DefaultSpeaking of the AKC/More ?'s/pg 5

    Is there any reason...that field labs cannot be shown..or not recognized by the AKC? I mean..they are purebreds...why only bench labs? Do you think they'll ever recognize field labs as another variation of bench labs..or something like that. For instance there are long collies and short haired collies..also variations on other breeds...just curious.
    Jackie

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    Thunders Mom is offline Senior Member
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    DefaultRe: Speaking of the AKC

    Good question Jackie. I'd like to know too as Thunder is field. They behave just as good as bench. At least in my house...

    It's not the destination, it's the journey!

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    Dani's Avatar
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    DefaultRe: Speaking of the AKC

    There is no indication in the Labrador standard for field labs. There is only ONE standard, and all labradors have to conform to that standard in order to be shown in the ring. BTW, AKC doesn't dictate this, the LRC (Labrador Retriever Club) does. AKC is just a registering body. The LRC dictates the standard, the rules, and breeders code of ethics for Labs.

    Most (not all) field bred labs do not even come close to the standard as it's written, especially in the areas of muzzle, coat, and height/weight requirements.

    You can read the breed standard here: http://www.akc.org/breeds/labrador_retriever/

    But to highlight an area:
    General Appearance
    The Labrador Retriever is a strongly built, medium-sized, short-coupled, dog possessing a sound, athletic, well-balanced conformation that enables it to function as a retrieving gun dog; the substance and soundness to hunt waterfowl or upland game for long hours under difficult conditions; the character and quality to win in the show ring; and the temperament to be a family companion. Physical features and mental characteristics should denote a dog bred to perform as an efficient Retriever of game with a stable temperament suitable for a variety of pursuits beyond the hunting environment.

    The most distinguishing characteristics of the Labrador Retriever are its short, dense, weather resistant coat; an "otter" tail; a clean-cut head with broad back skull and moderate stop; powerful jaws; and its "kind," friendly eyes, expressing character, intelligence and good temperament.

    Above all, a Labrador Retriever must be well balanced, enabling it to move in the show ring or work in the field with little or no effort. The typical Labrador possesses style and quality without over refinement, and substance without lumber or cloddiness. The Labrador is bred primarily as a working gun dog; structure and soundness are of great importance.

    Size, Proportion and Substance
    Size--The height at the withers for a dog is 22½ to 24½ inches; for a bitch is 21½ to 23½ inches. Any variance greater than ½ inch above or below these heights is a disqualification. Approximate weight of dogs and bitches in working condition: dogs 65 to 80 pounds; bitches 55 to 70 pounds.

    The minimum height ranges set forth in the paragraph above shall not apply to dogs or bitches under twelve months of age.

    Proportion--Short-coupled; length from the point of the shoulder to the point of the rump is equal to or slightly longer than the distance from the withers to the ground. Distance from the elbow to the ground should be equal to one half of the height at the withers. The brisket should extend to the elbows, but not perceptibly deeper. The body must be of sufficient length to permit a straight, free and efficient stride; but the dog should never appear low and long or tall and leggy in outline. Substance--Substance and bone proportionate to the overall dog. Light, "weedy" individuals are definitely incorrect; equally objectionable are cloddy lumbering specimens. Labrador Retrievers shall be shown in working condition well-muscled and without excess fat.
    There are other breeds that do have a split in them. They are recognized as separate breeds. That will probably never happen with Labradors.
    Dani, Rider & Rookie
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    DefaultRe: Speaking of the AKC

    That's what I meant Dani..then why doesn't the LRC also recognize field..it would have it's own standards.
    Jackie


    Quote Originally Posted by Dani
    There is no indication in the Labrador standard for field labs. There is only ONE standard, and all labradors have to conform to that standard in order to be shown in the ring. BTW, AKC doesn't dictate this, the LRC (Labrador Retriever Club) does. AKC is just a registering body. The LRC dictates the standard, the rules, and breeders code of ethics for Labs.

    Most (not all) field bred labs do not even come close to the standard as it's written, especially in the areas of muzzle, coat, and height/weight requirements.

    You can read the breed standard here: http://www.akc.org/breeds/labrador_retriever/

    But to highlight an area:
    General Appearance
    The Labrador Retriever is a strongly built, medium-sized, short-coupled, dog possessing a sound, athletic, well-balanced conformation that enables it to function as a retrieving gun dog; the substance and soundness to hunt waterfowl or upland game for long hours under difficult conditions; the character and quality to win in the show ring; and the temperament to be a family companion. Physical features and mental characteristics should denote a dog bred to perform as an efficient Retriever of game with a stable temperament suitable for a variety of pursuits beyond the hunting environment.

    The most distinguishing characteristics of the Labrador Retriever are its short, dense, weather resistant coat; an "otter" tail; a clean-cut head with broad back skull and moderate stop; powerful jaws; and its "kind," friendly eyes, expressing character, intelligence and good temperament.

    Above all, a Labrador Retriever must be well balanced, enabling it to move in the show ring or work in the field with little or no effort. The typical Labrador possesses style and quality without over refinement, and substance without lumber or cloddiness. The Labrador is bred primarily as a working gun dog; structure and soundness are of great importance.

    Size, Proportion and Substance
    Size--The height at the withers for a dog is 22½ to 24½ inches; for a bitch is 21½ to 23½ inches. Any variance greater than ½ inch above or below these heights is a disqualification. Approximate weight of dogs and bitches in working condition: dogs 65 to 80 pounds; bitches 55 to 70 pounds.

    The minimum height ranges set forth in the paragraph above shall not apply to dogs or bitches under twelve months of age.

    Proportion--Short-coupled; length from the point of the shoulder to the point of the rump is equal to or slightly longer than the distance from the withers to the ground. Distance from the elbow to the ground should be equal to one half of the height at the withers. The brisket should extend to the elbows, but not perceptibly deeper. The body must be of sufficient length to permit a straight, free and efficient stride; but the dog should never appear low and long or tall and leggy in outline. Substance--Substance and bone proportionate to the overall dog. Light, "weedy" individuals are definitely incorrect; equally objectionable are cloddy lumbering specimens. Labrador Retrievers shall be shown in working condition well-muscled and without excess fat.
    There are other breeds that do have a split in them. They are recognized as separate breeds. That will probably never happen with Labradors.

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    DefaultRe: Speaking of the AKC

    There are plenty other breeds with this problem...look at the show husky and sledding husky, barely recognizable as the same breed. The standard is set to keep what is the best qualities in the dog...I am pretty sure show labradors were meant to hunt just as good as your field dog but over time the breed has split. I can see it happening to the rottweiler breed as well. Show dogs are becoming very waterdown with no drive at all.

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    Dani's Avatar
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    DefaultRe: Speaking of the AKC

    There is no need, in my opinion, to have a split in our breed. The standard was developed with the whole working dog in mind. The whole concept of breeding a smaller, leggier, faster dog for a set of trials that does not mirror what a real hunt is like is simply dumb. Labs that run field trials are high strung, don't have appropriate coat, and some have a hard time sitting still when they are in a real hunt situation.
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    DefaultRe: Speaking of the AKC

    Well..I guess there are reasons for not making a 2nd category for Field Labs..I just find it unusual..and didn't know about the info you posted.
    Jackie

    Quote Originally Posted by Canula2000
    There are plenty other breeds with this problem...look at the show husky and sledding husky, barely recognizable as the same breed. The standard is set to keep what is the best qualities in the dog...I am pretty sure show labradors were meant to hunt just as good as your field dog but over time the breed has split. I can see it happening to the rottweiler breed as well. Show dogs are becoming very waterdown with no drive at all.

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    DefaultRe: Speaking of the AKC

    Dani..disregarding my original question..I think giving field labs this generalization is unfair. Not all field labs are like this just like not all rottweilers are vicious or on and on and on. I don't consider Dakota hyper..his dam and sire both have field titles, plus prior generations of his parents have field champion titles. I'm sure there are hyper dogs of every breed. I don't know..it just sounds unfair to say all field labs are.....(fill in the blanks)'
    Jackie

    Quote Originally Posted by Dani
    There is no need, in my opinion, to have a split in our breed. The standard was developed with the whole working dog in mind. The whole concept of breeding a smaller, leggier, faster dog for a set of trials that does not mirror what a real hunt is like is simply dumb. Labs that run field trials are high strung, don't have appropriate coat, and some have a hard time sitting still when they are in a real hunt situation.

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    DefaultRe: Speaking of the AKC

    I take offense to this
    Show dogs are becoming very waterdown with no drive at all.
    My show dogs have a lot of drive. All of them could hunt if that is what I did. I show in Conformation, Obedience, Rally and Agility. I also donated dogs and train them to be working Service Dogs. They all love the water and will either work all day or are happy to just lay by my side. They all fit the breed standard even my half field half show dog.

    There is and should ONLY be ONE Labrador Standard. The field breeders need to remember what a Labrador is suppose to look like and quit breeding for only certain qualities. They need to breed for the whole dog. They need to look at conformation along with drive and temperament.

    I do believe there is extremes on both sides. There are some show breeder that only take conformation and nothing else into consideration when breeding but I also think that more field breeders forget to look at conformation and only look at working ability.

    I know of many breeders that are making sure the dogs have both conformation and working ability. These breeders are the ones that will preserve the Labrador for what it is, both conformationally correct and keep the working ability alive.

    So to answer the original question asked. As long as a Labrador fits the breed stand than it can be shown in the conformation ring. It does not matter if the breeder breeds to hunt or show or any other venue, what matters is that the dog fits the standard for the breed. And this should include both conformation and working ability because both are addressed in the standard.
    Above all, a Labrador Retriever must be well balanced, enabling it to move in the show ring or work in the field with little or no effort.
    Dayna
    Glen-Mar Labradors

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    Dani's Avatar
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    DefaultRe: Speaking of the AKC

    Jackie, I didn't say that all field labs are like that. I said that many field trial labs are like that. Let's be honest. Most people don't really have a field bred lab or a bench lab here at JL. The majority of the dogs here are PET BRED labs...having qualities of "both sides".

    If you've ever seen a HT or FT, then you would know the difference in the two. And FT dogs need to be a bit more "amped" up if you will to be able to cover the distance they are asking these dogs to cover...again, not a real hunt situation.

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