Every dog has its day and South Carolina’s State Dog, the Boykin Spaniel, has an entire week of celebration when the 2019 National Field Trials bring the celebrity dogs home to their roots this week through Sunday. Camden has proclaimed the week Boykin Spaniel Week and is host to a variety of free public, family friendly events.
Festivities begin when more than 300 Boykin Spaniels and their families come to Camden for the trials that include testing in Novice, Puppy, Intermediate and Open classes. Additional skill events include the Duck Dog Shootout, Hot Dog Retrieve, Speed Dog, Children’s Handling and Natural Ability stake.
Boykin Spaniel Invasion! is a walking tour that begins at the Camden Archives and Museum, 1314 Broad St. Pick up a brochure to explore Camden by locating 11 “little brown dogs” -- miniature bronze statues. Follow the clues, take photos of each trail marker, and post them and with your contact information to the Facebook page. Everyone who finds all of the trail markets will receive a Certificate of Discovery. Participants can also find the clues on Facebook at @BoykinInvasion or online at www.boykinspanielinvasion.com.
The Little Brown Dog Exhibit is on permanent display at the Camden Archives and Museum and tells the story of the state’s official breed. Visitors journey back in time with historic photographs, original documents as well as a model of a section boat, a small boat which was used for hunting along the Wateree River and ideal for the small size of the Boykin Spaniel. Visit www.camdenschistory.com.
The Great Boykin Spaniel Puppy Hunt is a unique week-long scavenger hunt game. Participants follow clues and search for 10 “little brown dogs” at merchants and restaurants in Downtown Camden. Puppy Hunt Headquarters is Books on Broad, 944 Broad St. where puppy hunters can pick up the game card, read the clues, find the pups, and get their cards stamped at each location where a puppy is found. There’s a treat for everyone who can find eight of the 10 puppies and turn their stamped cards in at Books on Broad before 4 p.m. Saturday. Each participant with a completed card will be entered into a grand prize drawing. No purchase required and participants need not be present at drawing to win. Puppy hunters can also download a “game card” and learn more at www.classicallycarolina.com/puppyhunt.
The Field Trials take place in Boykin, Camden and Rembert. If you go, check the location map online at http://alturl.com/g76vo. Also, don’t wear anything white as it can distract the dogs that need to stay focused on their challenge. You may also bring your own dogs to observe, but keep them on a leash. For details visit www.boykinspaniel.org.