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Lucky Charms in the Ring

Happy (early) St. Paddy’s day to all of you DFR readers!

When the majority of people picture St. Patrick’s Day, they see shamrocks, lots of green trinkets, leprechauns and corned beef! I know I do! But I’ll bet most of you don’t even know what St. Patrick looked like. I didn’t, that’s for sure, so I looked him up on Wikipedia.

St. Patrick’s Day is fun, imaginative and very green! Believe it or not, the color originally associated with the holiday was blue. Through the years, green took over, and now St. Paddy’s is one of the most widely celebrated saint’s days in the world!

So what does this have to do with dog shows? Well, I strongly believe that “luck” is a big factor for a lot of us of us who are involved with showing dogs. What better day is there to remind us of some of our lucky – and sadly unlucky – moments in the ring?

Pots of gold and leprechauns first come to mind when thinking of St. Patrick’s Day, but lucky charms take many other forms for those of us who show dogs.

Something that is most associated with both this holiday and the Irish culture is luck – and good luck charms. And no, I’m not just talking about the pot of gold at the end of a rainbow.

Luck to some people is just “luck,” a supernatural experience that leads to a certain result. Others are known to carry around a small item to bring them luck. Let’s face it, a lot of us dog “show-ers” have good luck charms, and sometimes we don’t even realize it.

How many of us use the same lead for the same dog every time we show it? I do, and I know most handlers and owner-handlers have “lucky” leads for their special dogs as well. Not only are they considered lucky, but some people take it one step further: for every win they tie a knot in the lead. Some might say that these are reminders of the wins, while others say they’re purely for luck!

Speaking of leads, for those of you who don’t show Toy dogs, you’ve probably wondered, like I have, “what’s with the dice on the end of leads?” Well, I did some investigating and found out: smartest idea ever – those little dice act as weights that allow the lead to stay over your shoulder while presenting your dog on the table.

Honestly, with the combination of a lucky lead and lucky dice, it could mean double the luck. Maybe even magnificent luck!

Exhibitors have a lot of ways of trying to improve their luck. Some use decked-out and bedazzled shammies, specialized totes, even lucky sprays! And then there are those of us with lucky suits and, for the guys, lucky ties. We’ve all been there. Every time you wear a particular suit you seem to win and have good luck. Then, after a while, it’s your “lucky suit.” Before you know it, you’re wearing the same suit time and time again! I know, kinda odd, but it sure does seem to work for some of us.

I also reached out to my Facebook community to find out about their favorite lucky charms for the ring. For the ladies, one of the most popular responses was their jewelry. Not only is it special to them, but they say their jewelry seems to bring out the best of luck when competing! Others mentioned that they have lucky items they travel with; trophies they’ve collected over the years ride right there with them in their vans or motor homes to every show. What a great way to bring a little luck wherever you go!

So, whether you’re attending a show this weekend or celebrating at home, make it a good one and take your good luck charms with you!

Oh, and don’t forget to wear your green! DFR!!!!!!!

Written by

Kayla Bertagnolli is a 23-year-old from Ogden, UT, who's been involved in the dog show world her whole life. A former junior handler who learned about breeding Beagles from her mother Leah, she assisted several professional handlers and is currently working to become a Junior Showmanship judge. Kayla is passionate about photography and writes the twice-weekly blog, DFR. She plans to continue breeding and showing, and expects to stay involved in dogs "for life!"