It was a family reunion of the shaggy variety.
More than 50 doodles — of every kind — ran and rolled around 10 acres of freshly mowed pasture on a bank of the Snoqualmie River near Duvall, Wash., Sunday afternoon for the 9th edition of Doodle Romp.
“I think they are all related somehow,” said Abracadoodles owner Cindy Hancock.
This is an annual gathering of dogs bred at Abracadoodles — a small farm in Spangle, Wash., a half hour from Spokane.
“This is an opportunity for me to see the dogs and the people,” Hancock said, “and show them how I appreciate their picking Abracadoodles.”
It also allows for canine siblings to interact with each other.
Dogs seem to gravitate to other dogs sired by common parents.
The doodles came from near and far.
Ruby, a 15-month golden doodle, traveled more than 320 miles from Haden, Idaho, with her human family.
Steve McCaughan, his wife Julie, daughter Chrissy and son Dillon all made the trip together, starting their drive Saturday and spending a night in North Bend before heading to the romp.
“We’re just doodle fans,” McCaughan said.
“Mostly so our dog can play with other doodles,” Julie added.
The origin of “doodles” is found in Australia where they were originally bred as service dogs for disabled persons, according to the Abracadoodles website. Doodles are golden or labrador retrievers that are bred with poodles.
Doodles were bred in Australia in the 1980s and in North America since the 1990s, according to barckennels.com.
This gathering of doodles was just a fun day for the dogs and their people.
As a metal gate on the back side of Camp Charlie’s off-leash park swung open, a flood of doodles rushed to the riverbank.
Dogs of every size — from 10-pound minis to 75-pound standards — splashed, swam and fetched balls and sticks in the river.
“A fun thing about doodle romp is you always go home with someone else’s ball,” said Erin Weisman with a laugh.
Her dog Waldo out-swam everyone.
“I taught him well,” Weisman said. “I just play fetch with him all the time. It kind of just worked out.”
The distinctive clang of a dinner bell signaled the next event, the costume contest.
This is probably more for the owners than it is for their dogs.
Refrains of “don’t shake!” could be heard as people try and keep in place the outlandish costumes.
Sue Popp, of Spokane, meticulously dressed her two snow white doodles Percy and Emmett as a gunslinger and a pirate respectively.
“Emmett’s vest is too small,” Popp said, clearly disappointed.
This was serious business.
There was a bumble bee, a University of Washington mascot, an angel, a unicorn and Hancock’s toy doodle Tiny Bubbles in her maternity outfit.
“She wears the bubble on her head so nobody will notice her tummy,” Hancock said.
And the winner is…
Pepper, also known as the “Land Shark,” is a four-year-old brown ultimate doodle from Kirkland.
“(Pepper) has been prepping her shark teeth for four years now,” said Jared Singer, Pepper’s proud owner.