Pictured at Guisachan House in Tomich, Invernessshire, was a record breaking number for the Highland gathering of the gentle canines. The festival was to celebrate the breed and its history but there was fun to be had. The festival included talent contests, tug of war and hurling competitions.
The Guisachan Gathering started in 2006 when a very large group of golden retrievers met in the Guisachan to celebrate the formation of the club 50 years earlier. The event, in 2006, set the world record with 188 golden retrievers being on site.
The record was broken, and then some, with 222 golden retrievers arriving on the scene in 2013. The Event is hosted by the Golden Retriever Club of Scotland and the festival is held at the abandoned home of Dudley Coutts Marjoribanks, who bred the first golden retriever in 1868. His breed combination was from genes of a yellow waxy-coated retriever and a now extinct tweed water spaniel. The breed was recognized 64 years later by The American Kennel Club, according to PBS Newshour.
GRCS committee member and organizer, Mr. Jim Richardson said, “The last three months of planning were a bit manic, but it was all worthwhile. I had a PA system and I was shouting at the owners “Get out! Get out of the photo!” He added, “Of course, everybody knows their own dog, and your eyes are glued to it the whole time”. There were fans in attendance from as far as Hawaii.
On the website of The Golden Retriever Club of Scotland, there are over 50 people working on a new breed rescue to assist in placing golden retrievers in lifelong homes. Golden retrievers fans include Oprah Winfrey and actor Andrew Garfield.