AKC's 'Meet the Breeds' returns to NYC's Javits Center

Thousands of people attended the 14th American Kennel Club's "Meet the Breeds" event this weekend. The AKC brings in 130 breeds for potential dog owners to meet, play with, and learn about before they make their purchase.

At the Leonberger booth, they spun, crocheted, and sold scarves, with all the yarn made from the shedding of one Leonberger.

"It's an amazing family dog," said Pamela Isaacson, a Leonberger breeder. "It's a dog that's really going to change your life and your lifestyle, but you also have to know what you're getting into."

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Old English Sheepdogs take part in the American Kennel Club's annual Meet the Breeds event at the Jacob K. Javits Convention Center  in New York on January 28, 2023. (Photo by TIMOTHY A. CLARY / AFP) (Photo by TIMOTHY A. CLARY/AFP via Getty Images)

The dog is in the details, which is the message the American Kennel Club is trying to get across, to make sure their canine of choice is a good fit. At each booth, breed experts break down the pros and cons of the puppies.

Alex Cogott took his time going from booth to booth in his search for a new puppy, discussing the mental and physical needs of each of the breeds.

"I'm a little more relaxed and stuff," Cogott said, "We like to do something, but we don't need something very active, something that doesn't mind being a lap dog."

His top choices are the lab and French bulldog but admits that could change by the time he walks through all the alphabetized booths. There's the Belgian Tervuren, which make for great apartment dogs, the Finnish Lapphund, which do well in homes with other dogs, and the Clumber Spaniel who are couch potatoes, and the perfect partner for weekend tv binge-watching.  

And it's just not educational, a lot of people come to Meet the Breeds to meet the breeders, to learn about pure breed rescues, and who are here solely to get their dog fix.