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ICYMI: Annual dog show back in town this weekend

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Annual dog show back in town this weekend

Hobbs will be a little noisier than usual this weekend when approximately 507 pure bred dogs arrive here to compete in this year’s Hobbs Kennel Club dog show.

The show, which is scheduled to begin Saturday at 9 a.m., will close at 5 p.m., but will reopen Sunday morning at 8 a.m. The show is free and open to the public, but no dogs except those in the show will be admitted to the event center.

The dogs, of course, will be accompanied by owners or handlers. Many of the humans will come into town driving motor homes or other kinds of recreational vehicles. Others will be checking into pet-friendly hotels.

“Most will be eating at local restaurants and looking for places to visit during down times,” Allen Jackson, chairman of the dog show said Tuesday. “I hear there’s a good exhibit over at the Western Heritage Museum and a lot of people will probably go over there. This is an important event for Hobbs.”

Jackson said Tuesday that he did not yet have a list of all the breeds of dogs entered in the show.

“I know that two new breeds were introduced to the American Kennel Club this year, but I don’t know whether they’ll be represented at the show,” Jackson said.

Jackson explained the procedure at the Hobbs show as being two shows in the space of the two days.

“It can be a little bit confusing,” he said. “What happens is that on Saturday, the dogs will go through their paces and at the end of the day, the judges will choose the best in show. The next day, it’s like a whole new dog show. The same judges that were judges on Saturday will be judging, but they’ll be judging different dogs, dogs that they didn’t see the day before. And so it’s possible that a dog that won the first day won’t win the next day. The dog that won the first day may just be having a terrible day the second day.”

“There are standards the American Kennel Club has for each breed. The dogs have to be at least a certain height but not any taller. There are color standards for each breed. The standards are all in writing and the judges have to know them all,” Jackson said.

Information on the American Kennel Club Website, says that there are several breeds in each of the seven groups of dogs into which competitors are divided. Those groups are sporting, hounds, working, terrier, toy, non-sporting and herding. An Internet search of breeds within groups nets more than a million hits, with pictures of each breed within each group.

The breeds within the groups are diverse. For example, there are more than 20 breeds within the herding group and those breeds range from the short-legged Welsh Corgi to the long-legged German shepherd. The hound group includes bassets, beagles and Dachshunds.

Each breed within a group is judged separately, males against males and females against females and judges choose winners within each breed. Eventually the list is winnowed to the top dog in each group and those seven dogs compete for best in show.

At the Hobbs show, spectators can watch as handlers put their dogs through their paces. However, since different breeds may be competing in different performance arenas at once, the experience will not be the same as watching the Westminster dog show on television. The Hobbs experience will be more upclose and personal.

Dorothy N. Fowler can be reached at education@ hobbsnews.com .

Burkett Shaw
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