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Question
Posted by: ?? | 2004/02/13

dog show

What is a good age to start a dog with dog shows. And why all the pepping and make-up for the dogs? Is the whole purpose not to try and conserve the breed and let the dogs socialise?

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Our expert says:
Expert ImageCyberVet

Hi ??
The purpose of dog breed shows is to see who has the best looking dogs so that they can be bred from to retain these "good looks" or confomation. Temperament is also taken into consideratin, but is not the most important factor, which I think is a pity personally. The socialising happens between the people, but not so much between the dogs who are tied up or crated most of the time. If you are wanting to enter dog shows you need your dog to have registration papers from its breeder and it must not be neutered. I would suggest you start with shows when it is a tiny puppy (10 weeks) so it gets used to all the smells, sounds and bustle at an early age. Breed show training is also quite specific so you need to take your dog to someone who knows what you will be required to do and will help you teach your dog to do the right thing. If your dog wins you will be expected to breed from him/her. Of course there are fun shows run by SPCA and the like which give prizes for "Mutt of the Year" and "Best Dressed Dog" etc. and these are great for all dogs, as long as they are well-socialised and used to lots of people and noise.
Karen Gray-Kilfoil
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Our users say:
Posted by: Yvonne | 2005/06/28

Please can someone assist in my search for a Thoroughbred MALE Basset Hound Tri-colour puppy. I'm prepared to travel to fetch. I can be contacted daily on (012) 5422065.

Reply to Yvonne
Posted by: chill | 2004/02/13

Some further comments:

Before you take your dog ANYWHERE in public, please make sure its inoculations are fully up to date and valid - both for your dog's protection and for that of the other dogs present.
And make sure your dog doesn't distract any competitors, especially in the obedience classes - you would not make yourself very popular!

Secondly, there are plenty of breeds which require no meaningful physical preparation for showing purposes, other than normal brushing and cleanliness. Think of labradors, ridgebacks, whippets, german shepherds, dobies, pointers, danes, bassets, beagles, dachshunds - in fact, just about any short or flat-coated dog

Finally, while some people and breeds tend to attract rather over-the-top 'hairstyles', remember that shows are essentially competitions, and if your dog's appearance is just that bit neater, tidier, crisper and cleaner than that of the opposition, you could score an extra point or two, and depending on how well you do, the value of your dog and of its offspring can be significantly increased.

So it's not merely a question of neurotic owners wanting their dog to be the prettiest in the world.... there is a purpose behind it.

Reply to chill
Posted by: SPCA fan | 2004/02/13

That's why you should support the SPCA's Mutt of the Year show in Constantia on Sunday!! :)
It's a great opportunity for you to enter your dog, even if his/her pedigree line is a little skew.
It's also a great day out for your dog, to socialise with all the other pooches there.

I agree though, dog shows are more often than not about the human's achievement (in prepping and maintaining the dog). After all, the dog still feels like a dog.

Hope to see you there!
(Details on the SPCA's Cape Town website.)

Reply to SPCA fan

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