Dog shows are more than just pretty dogs

2019 Annual Westminster Kennel Club Best in ShowCongratulations to last night’s best in show winner, GCHB CH Kingarthur Van Foliny Home at the Annual Westminster Kennel Club show at Madison Square Garden. Best in Show completes a week of canine events with a sprinkling of cats thrown in for variety.

In addition to the Westminster Kennel Club show, Westminster week features both Masters Agility and Obedience competitions. Meet the Breeds hosts both dogs and cats from the Afghan hound to the Turkish van and every breed in between. To get the inside scoop on the dog show, last week’s guest on “Ask the Vet” (SiriusXM Stars 109) was AMC’s own Anne Marie Kubacz, LVT. In addition to being AMC’s longest serving nurse, Anne Marie has shown dogs at the Westminster Kennel Club show, worked as an expert during the broadcast and been involved in veterinary care for dogs from the show treated at AMC. Here are some of her insights on the second longest running sporting event in America.

Dog shows are for families

Anne Marie got her start in dog shows when someone noticed her beautiful Irish setter in Prospect Park and suggested she show her dog. She met her husband showing dogs and her son is now a professional dog handler. This family trio of dog show specialists spends nearly every weekend at dog shows, but Anne Marie said devoting every weekend to dog shows is not necessary to have a great family experience.

Dog shows have something for everyone

Anne Marie’s family specializes in showing purebred dogs, but dog shows provide opportunities for every type of dog. Dogs in five height divisions competed in the Masters Agility event at the WKC show. These energetic dogs raced over and under obstacles, through tunnels and zipped back and forth competing for the best time. There were even cameras inside the tunnels and the view from inside made it look like the dogs were running inside a set of lungs! To see for yourself, watch the highlight video.

The Masters Obedience competition is a more creative event where the dog and his partner perform a routine of obedience moves. This year’s winner is the Tiger Woods of the dog world and became a four time Masters Champion in Obedience. This year’s performance will bring a smile to your face.

Dog shows have cats too

If you’re not interested in participating with your dog, Anne Marie suggested attending the event just to meet some dogs and cats. Meet the Breeds gives dog lovers the unique opportunity to meet and play with more than 100 different dog breeds in booths cleverly decorated to depict each breed’s country of origin, historical purpose/function and attributes as a family pet, all while learning about responsible dog ownership and which breeds may be right for them. This year, cats made their triumphant return to the AKC Meet the Breeds® event with The International Cat Association® giving animal lovers the unique opportunity to meet and play with 35-40 different cat breeds.

The dog show and AMC

When I asked Anne Marie what her best back story about the WKC show was, she recounted the story of a Doberman pinscher, Indy. He flew to New York City for the WKC and when he got off the plane, everyone knew he was not right. Indy came straight from the airport to AMC where a case of bloat was diagnosed and treated. Indy went on to win Best in Show that year to the cheering of many delighted AMC veterinarians.

AMC congratulates all winners from Westminster week, but the biggest winners of all were the humans who had a wonderful time with their dogs.

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