Posts Tagged ‘1st Baron Tweedmouth’

Ishbel Maria Hamilton-Gordon, Marchioness of Aberdeen and Temair, was the daughter of the 1st Baron Tweedmouth. Besides their yellow retrievers, this family was also associated with Skye terriers.

Regular readers will know that I often reference the 1st Baron Tweedmouth, Dudley Marjoribanks, and his family. Because of the nature of this blog, I tend to focus on their retrievers. However, the family is also known for their patronage of another breed. In the late nineteenth and early twentieth centuries, this family was known more for its Skye terriers than its retrievers.

Now, I have mentioned that it was the daughter of the 1st Baron Tweedmouth who introduced the golden retriever to North America. Ishbel Marjoribanks married John Hamilton-Gordon, the Marquess of Aberdeen and Temair. He would eventually become Governor-General of Canada from 1893 to 1898, and he and his wife purchased an estate in the Okanagan Valley. This estate was called Guisachan after her father’s estate in the Highlands near the small village of Tomich.

Now, I’ve mentioned all of this before on the blog, but it has always been within the context of retrievers.  However,  if Ishbel’s name had been mentioned in 1900, most of the intelligentsia would say something about her push for various reforms in Canada and probably would say something about her Skye terriers.

In Charles Henry Lane’s Dog Shows and Doggy People (1902), the section on “The Countess of  Aberdeen” discusses her patronage  of Skye terriers and also mentions how much her father loved the breed:

There is no need to tell any of my readers who have seen this lady at a show with her pets that she is a lover of animals, and I am very pleased that her chosen favourites are Drop-eared Skyes, as they will be all the better for her ladyship’s patronage and influence, and are not so much kept as they deserve.

I believe Lady Aberdeen’s love for Skyes, which was inherited from her father, Lord Tweedmouth, dates from the time of her childhood; but it is only during the last few years that any of them have been exhibited.

The accompanying portrait of the Countess in company with a number of her pets will give a better idea of what a typical lot they are than any words of mine. Some of their names are: Monarch of Haddo, Feuriach (meaning Little Squirrel), Coulaig (Little Darling), Chluarain (Thistle), Bheown (Mountain), Darkie, Fraoch (Heather), and Angus Grey, evidently for the most part names of Gaelic origin well suited to the holders of them.

The Countess is well known as a lady of culture and ability, which she has shown in the valuable help she has given her distinguished husband in carrying out the receptions and social functions connected with the high Colonial appointments he has held, and has accompanied him also in some of his sporting expeditions.

The Ladies’ Kennel Association has the advantage of Lady Aberdeen’s active patronage and support as one of their Grand Council, and she is also one of the Committee of the Ladies’ County House Club, and a representative of the National Poultry Organisation Society.

Matters intended to benefit women in all ranks of life find in the Countess no lukewarm advocate – one who can both act and speak in their favour, frequently presiding over meetings held for such purposes, both in England and Scotland, and occasionally, as at the last show in the Royal Botanic Gardens, Regent’s Park, distributing the prizes to the successful exhibitors of the Ladies’ Kennel Association.

As I have mentioned here before, drop-eared Skye terriers are very rare today. However, the Marjoribanks family had at least one of these dogs when the first litter of yellow retrievers was born at Guisachan. Here is a depiction of Mary Marjoribanks (Ishbel’s sister) with one dogs from that first litter. The dog is either Cowslip or Primrose:

The terrier on the left is a drop-eared Skye terrier. The dogs were common pets for Scottish aristocrats, and the are actually quite closely related to the Cairn terrier, which was once considered a variety of Skye.

Skye terriers are from the Hebrides, and although they were used as working terriers to bolt otters and badgers from their holts and settes, the dogs were not often worked in the nineteenth century.

This evolution from working terrier began centuries earlier. In the sixteenth century, John Caius sent a description of all sorts of British dogs to the Swiss naturalist Konrad Gessner. In his analysis, Caius described dogs very similar to the Skye-type terrier:

[L]ap dogs which were brought out of the barbarous borders from the uttermost countryes northward [such as Skye in the Inner Hebrides], and they by reason of the length of their heare, make show neither face nor body, and yet these curres forsooth because they are so strange, are greatly set by, esteemed, taken up, and made of, in room of the spaniell gentle, or comforter [the ancestral toy spaniel].

By the 1860’s, it was obvious that Skye terriers were meant to be pets. Many of these Scottish landowners were newcomers to the Highlands. The Marjoribankses  certainly were. Dudley had made his fortune as chairman of the Meux Brewery, and although a native of Scotland, he was not a Highlander. His roots were in the Borders near Berwick. The Skye terriers were thought as part and parcel of life in the Scottish Highlands. Sir Walter Scott had romanticized Scotland’s history, and many wealthy people in Britain were searching for Scottish land to call their own. Scott also kept Skye terriers (or dogs very similar to them).

It would have made sense that a family like the Marjoribankses who had come to the Highlands in search of that Scotland immortalized in Scott’s prose. In that part of Scotland, no country noble could be without a pack of Skye terriers.

Within this narrative there lies a certain irony. You’ll notice that Lane extols the virtues of the Skye terrier and laments that they are not “so much kept as they deserve.” The breed was beginning to fall from grace by the beginning of the twentieth century.

Today’s Skye terrier is a very rare breed. The KC has listed them as a Vulnerable Native Breed. In fact, on that list, the Skye is the most endangered breed, and it is estimated that this breed could become extinct within the next 40 years.

However, in 1900, no one was talking about the Marjoribankses’ other dog. If you mentioned a yellow retriever, someone would say that they exist, but they are inferior to black ones. Today, if you mention a golden retriever, I believe most people would know exactly what you’re talking about. If anyone knows anything about the Marjoribanks family, it is about their golden retrievers and their commitment to the old Liberal Party.

It is very unusual to find a family that has become associated with two different breeds of dog. It is even more unusual to see how the fortunes of these two breeds have played out in history.

Maybe in 100 years, the golden retriever will be in the same place that the Skye terrier is today.  The golden retriever is being considered to be little more than a family pet.  It won’t take centuries for the golden retriever to become nothing more than a romantic image. The Skye terrier didn’t have competitors that could easily replace them in the popular imagination of Scottish nobles. The golden can be replaced, and that is something that all people who appreciate the breed should consider.

If the Skye terrier teaches us anything, it is that breeds must be prevented from going sideways when their numbers are high enough to actually engage in real selective breeding. Once those numbers start to plummet, it is very hard to bring them back around. The time for reform is now.

If the Skye terrier fanciers had made some changes when their dogs were at the peak of their popularity, it is very likely that this breed wouldn’t be staring at a possible extinction in the very near future.

But it seems that very few dog people really look at these things until it is too late.

And that is the real shame.

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Guisachan House in the 1890's.

Guisachan in the 1890's.

Virtually all breed books discuss the prominent individuals within a given breed’s history in a positive light. Negative facts are usually left aside, for the focus is more on how the breed developed, not a discussion of the social, economic, and political history that made the breed possible. Granted, people do not buy dog books to understand these issues. Most people just want to read about the creation story of their dog, and the breed fanciers like to bask in the glory of the past.

However, it important to at least consider some of the negative parts of a breed’s history. As someone who prefers history to hagiography, I think it is a good idea to understand that the golden retriever would not have been possible had their not been some human suffering.

What do I mean by “human suffering”?

First of all, we have to start with who the founders of the golden retriever were.

The golden retriever’s founders were part of the economic and political elite of British society. The reason why we know so much about the dogs is that only people with considerable means would ever bother to keep such meticulous records of the dogs in their lines, and only people with that sort of wealth would even dream of keeping a dog with such a limited utility.

A dog that picks up shot game is certainly useful, but the average person could not bother with keeping or breeding such dogs. Working people needed dogs that could earn their keep. Dogs were bred according to their utility, not their pedigree, and after many generations breeding for utility only, tracing these bloodlines becomes next to impossible.

However, if one has money, time, and employees to maintain kennels, one can keep close records on the dogs. That is why we have such a complete record of the dogs at Guisachan.

Dudley Marjoribanks was not a poor man. Dudley had made a considerable fortune as chairman of the Meux Brewery Company, and he had inherited a lot of money from his father’s estate. He had a posh mansion in London’s Park Lane called Brook House. He also had holdings in the Scottish (now registration) county of Berwickshire, which was where he was born.

A Border Scot who had done well in this world, Marjoribanks began to look for new real estate. By the mid-nineteenth century, the Scottish Highlands had experienced a total image makeover. In the eighteenth century, it was seen as a backward place, full of Gaelic-speaking insurgents called Jacobites who were too busy raising hell and livestock to be recognized among the civilized.

The work of Sir Walter Scott had totally changed that popular perception. In his writings, Scotland became a romantic place, where the last vestiges of wild Britain existed alongside a turbulent history.

Queen Victoria and Prince Albert also helped changed this perception. They began visiting Balmoral in 1848, and eventually purchased the estate in 1852. This purchase set off a land boom in Scotland. All sorts of wealthy aristocrats began buying up land in Scotland.

In 1853, Dudley Marjoribanks was elected as the Liberal MP for Berwick-upon-Tweed, and it is very likely that he was caught up in the Scottish euphoria the had swept through these elite circles. His lands in Berwickshire did not count for much. He needed an estate deep within Caledonia, and you can’t get much more Caldeonian than a shooting estate in the Highlands.

Marjoribanks purchased Guisachan (“Place of the Firs”) in 1854. It was the perfect place to go grouse shooting and deer-stalking. It was also not a bad place to bring his fellow politicians for deal-making and negotiations.

Now, our popular perception of the Highlands is of a sparsely populated place with spectacular landscapes.  The land is inhabited by a few shepherds and some rare wild creatures, like the Scottish wildcat.

The truth of the matter is that Highlands were not always so empty. There was once a rather large population that lived there.  In Scotland, the lands were enclosed rather similarly to the way they were enclosed in England and Wales. However, these enclosures happened a little later, and they were based upon a different set of economic pressures.  The tenant farmers of Scotland had lived on these estates for centuries as part of the ancient clan system of Scotland. From the mid-eighteenth century onwards, these farmers were driven off these lands to make way for sheep grazing. Many Scottish farmers were without land to work, and they were forced into a level of economic insecurity that  forced them to fight for a chance to labor as virtual slave on estate or join the army (see the song “Twa Recruiting Sergeants.“)

The process of driving these large numbers of small farmers off the land to make way for sheep and cattle grazing and later for setting up posh estates for the wealthy was known as the Highland Clearances, and that is a good description for what happened. The Highlands were literally cleared of people, many of whom emigrated to other parts of Britain, as well as North America, Australia, New Zealand, and other parts of the British Empire.

In the 1850’s, there were still some estates that had tenant farmers working on their lands. When Guisachan was purchased, there were tenant farmers living there. These farmers were forced to leave.

Alexander Mackenzie (not the Canadian prime minister or the explorer) wrote the history of these clearances and worked hard to bring about reform to give these people rights. Mackenzie wrote about the Guisachan Clearances:

The modern clearances which took place within the last quarter of a century in Guisachan, Strathglass, by Sir Dudley Marjoribanks, have been described in all their phases before a Committee of the House of Commons in 1872. The Inspector of Poor for the parish of Kiltarlity wrote a letter which was brought before the Committee, with a statement from another source that, “in 1855, there were 16 farmers on the estate; the number of cows they had was 62, and horses, 24; the principal farmer had 2000 sheep, the next 1000, and the rest between them 1200, giving a total of 4200. Now (1873) there is but one farmer, and he leaves at Whitsunday; all these farmers lost the holdings on which they ever lived in competency; indeed, it is well known that some of them were able to lay by some money. They have been sent to the four quarters of the globe, or to vegetate in Sir Dudley’s dandy cottages at Tomich, made more for show than convenience, where they have to depend on his employment or charity. To prove that all this is true, take at random, the smith, the shoemaker, or the tailor, and say whether the poverty and starvation were then or now? For instance, under the old regime, the smith farmed a piece of land which supplied the wants of his family with meal and potatoes; he had two cows, a horse, and a score or two of sheep on the hill; he paid £7 of yearly rent; he now has nothing but the bare walls of his cottage and smithy, for which he pays £10. Of course he had his trade than as he has now. Will he live more comfortably now than he did then? “It was stated, at the same time, that, when Sir Dudley Marjoribanks bought the property, there was a population of 235 souls upon it, and Sir Dudley, in his examination, though he threw some doubt upon that statement, was quite unable to refute it. The proprietor, on being asked, said that he did not evict any of the people. But Mr. Macombie having said, “Then the tenants went away of their own free will,” Sir Dudley replied, “I must not say so quite. I told them that when they had found other places to go to, I wished to have their farms.”

They were, in point of fact, evicted as much as any others of the ancient tenantry in the Highlands, though it is but fair to say that the same harsh cruelty was not applied in their case as in many of the others recorded in these pages. Those who had been allowed to remain in the new cottages, are without cow or sheep, or an inch of land, while those alive of those sent off are spread over the wide world, like those sent, as already described, from other places. (291-93).

So to make way for his shooting estate, 235 people had to leave. We do not know their names, and we certainly do not know the names of their dogs or even what kind of dogs they owned. However, they were probably collie-types and terriers. They had an actual economic utility, but once their owners were deemed unnecessary for profit, progress, or prosperity of the elite, both the working dog and working man were sent packing.

To make way for Marjoribanks’s shooting estate and eventual development of his strain of yellow wavy-coat, people had to suffer. People lost their livelihoods and the ancient way of life.

This is the dark side of the Guisachan story that has always gone unmentioned in golden retriever histories. I apologize for not mentioning it earlier in this blog. The truth of the matter is that such facts do not often appear within the context of the story of the golden retriever.

However, the story does not end there. Dudley Marjoribanks’s daughter, Ishbel, married John Campbell Hamilton-Gordon, 1st Marquess of Aberdeen and Temair, who served as  Governor-General of Canada from 1893 to 1898. They were early Social Liberals who worked very hard to improve the conditions of working people in Canada, many of whom were either immigrants or descendants of immigrants who had left Scotland as a result of the clearances.

One wonders if Ishbel (Lady Aberdeen) felt a certain amount of guilt over her family’s clearance of Guisachan. Maybe she was trying to make amends for that injustice.


Lord and Lady Aberdeen purchase the Coldstream Ranch in the Okanagan Valley, which they renamed Guisachan. On that estate, they kept some yellow wavy-coats that were of her father’s strain. These were the first goldens to be imported to North America.

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The four bitch puppies that were born from crossing Nous to Belle formed the foundational for the strain of yellow retrievers at Guisachan. The line was maintained through some outcrossing to the top black wavy-coated retriever lines of the day, at least one red setter (of some breed), and another Tweed water dog.

If one takes a look at the pedigree of the Guisachan dogs, the names of famous dogs early days of the standardized flat or wavy-coated breed are rather obvious. Zelstone, Tracer, and Jenny/Wisdom, stand out  as founders of the line. That tells us that the Dudley Marjoribanks, though a Liberal, was close enough to Sewallis Shirley, an MP from a prominent Conservative family and founding president of the Kennel Club, to breed from their dogs. The two men probably saw each other in Parliament, and although they probably were not in agreement in politics, they were both ardent retriever people.

I find this part of their history rather fascinating.  The foundational lines of both the golden and flat-coat involve many of the same dogs. It also shows us that the strain developed at Guisachan was not intended to be a separate breed. It was intended to be a yellow variety of wavy-coat.

Now, in the early days of the fancy, wavy-coats had to be black. It was nearly impossible to win at show with a liver dog, and it would be nearly impossible to win with a yellow or red one. However, this yellow or red strain existed very early on in the history of the standardized wavy-coat.

Even though the strain that developed at Guisachan had some of the best wavy-coated dogs behind it, it was virtually unknown.  Even when Dudley Marjoribanks, MP, was elevated to the peerage of 1st Baron Tweedmouth in 1880, no category was developed for yellow wavy-coats in Kennel Club shows.

One of the reasons for the breed’s obscurity during this time is that the dogs were kept solely for working purposes and were kept by only a few individuals. The same can be said about the Malmesbury/Buccleuch line of smooth-haired retrievers, which began developing in the 1880’s.

In the 1880’s, who would have thought that the most numerous retrievers in the twenty-first century would be derived from those two obscure strains!

Like all wavy-coats of that day, the Tweedmouth strain varied from Newfoundland-type to setter-type.  The dog named Jenny/Wisdom would be the first dog to have something like a modern flat-coat’s head, and in the show-line of flat-coat, it became very important to breed away from the Newfoundland head and body type.


It should be noted here that the Tweedmouth strain was not particularly inbred. The fact that setters and Tweed water spaniels were used as outcrosses suggests that he was much more interested in producing a performance line of dogs.

The same cannot be said about Shirley’s line of wavy-coats. Ch. Moonstone, Tracer’s brother, was bred to his mother, and a red or golden puppy named Foxcote resulted from the Oedipal relations. There were  also several cases of full brother-sister matings.

I find it very interesting that flat-coats and goldens are well-known for their high incidence of cancer. I wonder if this rather high amount of inbreeding early on in their standardization might be a cause of it. After all, inbreeding tends to weaken the immune system, and the immune system is an important in fighting cancer.


The Tweedmouth strain did not develop separately from the other strains of wavy-coat. It developed in concert with them.

Had these dogs been black, they would have been absorbed into the modern flat-coated retriever. Indeed, as we shall see, the golden retriever that developed in the early twentieth century was developing along the lines of dogs we would recognize as flat-coats. The heavier-built dogs in both golden and black wavy-coats were bred away from.

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A depiction of a Tweed water spaniel or water dog. It may be a true liver or a yellow to red with brown skin.

By 1868, Nous had been an established working retriever at Guisachan for three years, and his owner, the 1st Baron Tweedmouth (Dudley Marjoribanks), decided that he wanted to use Nous to found his own breed.

Dudley Marjoribanks had grown up in Berwickshire, the former county in which Berwick-upon-Tweed had been its shire town. He also represented Berwick-upon-Tweed as an MP, and thus, he was familiar with that region’s peculiarities.

He knew of the local water dog, which was a cross between the indigenous water spaniel of the region and “the Newfoundland.”

Richard Lawrence wrote about them in The Complete Farrier and British Sportsman in 1816:

Along rocky shores and dreadful declivities beyond the junction of the Tweed with the sea of Berwick, water dogs have derived an addition of strength, from the introduction of a cross with the Newfoundland dog, which has rendered them completely adequate to the arduous difficulties and diurnal perils in which they are systematically engaged (405).

These dogs were a landrace type, which means they varied greatly in appearance. In Hugh Dalziel’s British Dogs, J.S. Skidmore’s description of the Tweed water spaniel goes as follows:

They were very light liver colour, so close in curl as to give me the idea that they had originally been a cross from a smooth-haired dog; they were long in tail, ears heavy in flesh and hard like a hound’s, but only slightly feathered – fore legs feathered behind, hind legs smooth, head conical, lips more pendulous than M’Carthy’s strain. The one I owned, which was considered to be one of the best of them, I bred from twice, and in each litter several of the puppies were liver and tan, being tanned from the knees downward and under the tail. I came to the conclusion that she, at any rate, had been crossed with the bloodhound.

It is possible that his dog had been crossed with bloodhound or maybe Gordon setter, but  at least one account of the dogs suggests that at least some of these dogs were more of the retriever-type Stanley O’Neill was a well-known flat-coat expert who he had encountered Tweed water dogs as a boy in the 1890’s. His description is of a more retriever like than that of J.S. Skidmore:

Further up the coast, probably Alnmouth [in Northumberland, south of Berwick-upon-Tweed], I saw men netting for salmon. With them was a dog with a wavy or curly coat. It was a tawny colour but, wet and spumy, it was difficult to see the exact colour, or how much was due to bleach and salt. Whilst my elders discussed the fishing I asked these Northumberland salmon net men whether their dog was a [St. John’s?] Water-Dog  or a Curly, airing my knowledge. They told me he was a Tweed Water Spaniel. This was a new one on me. I had a nasty suspicion my leg was being pulled. This dog looked like a brown Water Dog to me, certainly retrieverish, and not at all spanielly. I asked if he came from a trawler, and was told it came from Berwick.

From that description, the dogs looked like a tawny curly-coated retriever. This suggests that at least some of the dogs were not true livers but were brown-skinned yellow to reds. The “light-liver” color in the Skidmore description sounds more like a deadgrass Chessie than a true liver-colored dog.  (Deadgrass Chessies are light yellow dogs with brown skin.)

Now, from my reading of all of these texts, a Tweed water dog or Tweed water spaniel was actually a derivative of the St. John’s water dog. That is why it looked so much like a retriever.  The fact that the dogs had such short hair suggests that they were derived from that “Newfoundland,” rather than the big one. It is likely that the native water spaniel in Northumberland and the Borders was red or yellow in color, rather than truly liver.

Also, in the O’Neill description, the dogs were being used to net salmon. That particular job is the exact task that the St. John’s water dogs performed in Newfoundland.

The dogs were celebrated waterfowl dogs, retrieving shot birds from the chilly and rough waters of the North Sea coast. Because this was a regional breed, it was not well-known in rest of Britain. Dudley Marjoribanks most likely knew about them and their reputation as superior retrievers.

However, in those days, the preferred color for a retriever was black. Other colors simply were not bred from. Perhaps Marjoribanks’s experience with Nous and his knowledge of the Tweed water dog gave him enough confidence to challenge the accepted wisdom of the day.

We do not know what Belle, the Tweed water dog chosen as Nous’s mate, looked like. We can only infer from the depictions of their offspring.

Nous appears to be rather dark-colored dog that was somewhat heavy in bone. If you saw him today, you would recognize him as a golden retriever.

Ada, Crocus, Primrose, and Cowslip, the four bitch puppies that resulted from that breeding, also looked a lot like goldens. Two depictions of those puppies exist– one of Ada and one of either Cowslip or Primrose. Ada is a rather short-haired dog. The dog said to be Cowslip or Primrose has rather wavy long hair.

Both of these dogs are lighter in color than their sire, and both are more lightly build than their sire. This suggests that Belle was a more lightly built dog than Nous and was of a pale gold color. The paler shades in the golden retriever most likely come from the Tweed water dog, for the red t0 yellow wavy-coated retrievers and red Irish and Gordon setters that were crossed into the strain are not that pale in color.

Belle was most likely a brown-skinned yellow, while Nous was a black-skinned yellow of the darker shade.

So now we have an idea about what  the two foundational breeds that helped create the golden retriever looked like. You can see some of the Tweed water dog’s characteristics in some golden retrievers, especially in the performance-bred lines. This breed disappeared by the turn of the century, mostly by being absorbed into the retrievers. Regional dogs also had a hard time competing against the “improved” breeds of retriever that were coming to the fore as the nineteenth century progressed.

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Ishbel Maria Marjoribanks married John Campbell Hamilton-Gordon,  1st Marquess of Aberdeen and Temair. They toured Canada extensively, eventually buying an estate in the Okanagan Valley of British Columbia in 1891, which was named “Guisachan,” after Ishbel’s father’s estate. It is believed that some members of the family brought goldens to Canada as early as 1881.  Aberdeen would eventually become Governor-General of Canada, and in this capacity, tried to implement various liberal reforms in Canada, quite an unusual step in this period known as The Gilded Age. (The Marjoribanks family were all members of the now defunct LIberal Party of Great Britain, a percursor to the one in Canada and the modern Liberal Democrat Party of the United Kingdom. This family was close to the Prime Minister William Gladstone, who was known for his concern for social justice.) These goldens were the first lines introduced into North America.

One of the first goldens in North America.

One of the first goldens in North America.

The Marjoribanks family also tried ranching in Texas, purchasing a large estate in Collingsworth and Wheeler Counties called The Rocking Chair Ranch. The 1st Baron Tweedmouth purchased it, and it was eventually ceded to his son Edward Marjoribanks when he passed away 1884. Edward, 2nd Baron Tweedmouth,  chose his brother Archibald (“Archie”) to go to Texas and help manage the property. Archie is said to have little interest in ranching or proper management of the herds. Instead, he was said to spend most of his time drinking, gambling, and hunting with dogs.  He was known to the locals as “Old Marshie.”

Among these hunting dogs on the ranch, Archie had a golden retriever or yellow flat/wavy coat bitch named “Lady.” She was believed to have been from the Marquess of Aberdeen’s stock or born from a bitch in whelp brought down from the British Columbian Guisachan to Texas.

Lady and Archie

Lady and Archie

This picture is variously listed as 1891 or 1893.

Because Archie was not a very good manager, the ranch hands began to steal the stock. Archie never mingled with them, and they saw their opportunity to rob the ranch blind. The senior manager, John Drew, was also stealing cattle. Eventually the ranch’s debts became too much, and the Ranch was sold in 1896.

However, the Marjoribanks family introduced the yellow retrievers to North America. This story may be the only example of a family founding a strain of dogs and then introducing that strain to other parts of the world within a generation.

Most of these dogs were very dark in color, and later imports to North America by Colonel Samuel Magoffin were of this color, too. As a result, most North American goldens were much darker in color than their European counterparts. The field and working varieties in the US and Canada are overwhelmingly dark gold or red in color. This was the same for our show varieties until relatively recently.

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