While our club was holding its annual breed specialty, on the other side of the world the Lapphund Club of Finland was holding their 'Spring' specialty. With the temperature below zero, it was a stark contrast to the 30+ degree temperatures at our show in Sydney. As I was in Finland undertaking work for another project, I thought I'd go along to the weekend festivities, which included a rally obedience trial, breed processing, a club meeting, awards presentation and the specialty.
Held in Kuopio on the grounds of a spa hotel, owners of Finnish Lapphunds, Swedish Lapphunds and Lapponian Herders travelled from far and wide to attend. There were 157 Lappies present.
Finnish shows are a different experience to in Australia. The venues generally are not purpose built, with this show held in make shift rings in a carpark area. There's only a few tents, with most exhibitors set up next to each other with just a crate and occasionally a chair. Exhibitors wear casual and comfortable clothing. And it's very rare to see someone brushing a dog. The dogs also receive gradings and a critique; you may have experienced this type of judging if you've attended a NSW or Victorian breed specialty.
The day started with light snowflakes, providing a picture perfect setting for our straight out of nature Arctic breed. As the day progressed, the snow increased. Making my four layers of clothing feel less than adequate and providing challenging conditions for taking photos. Alas, it was a perfect day, catching up with friends, seeing new Lappies and speaking with other breeders. As luck would have it, one judge was Swedish and spoke in English to the Finnish exhibitors, so I was able to follow his critiques and feedback.
Best of breed was awarded to Lecibsin Tero, who went on to receive Best in Show 2. Best opposite of breed was awarded to Peikkovuoren Wanda. Full results can be found here.
Here are some photos from the day.