A dog’s day in the ring

Fort Dodge Kennel Club hosts annual dog show

-Messenger photo by Peter Kaspari
Julie Swigart, from Missouri, holds onto Jovi, a bloodhound from Michigan, just before he competed at the Fort Dodge Kennel Club dog show Sunday.

It was the day of the dogs Sunday at the Webster County Fairgrounds as the Fort Dodge Kennel Club hosted its annual dog show.

Breeders from all across the country and dogs of all breeds were at the fairgrounds to compete in both rally and obedience trials.

Debbie Kailer, from Wisconsin, brought her 2-year-old Pomeranian, Ben, who is already a championship dog.

“He’s been doing a lot of winning,” Kailer said. “We’re No. 2 in 10 for owner/handler.”

He’s also received grand champion honors.

-Messenger photo by Peter Kaspari
Bella, a yellow Labrador, raises her paw on command from her owner, Tawnya Lichtenwalter, of Winterset, Sunday at the Fort Dodge Kennel Club dog show.

“He’s a beautiful Pomeranian,” she said. “He’s judged on his stride besides his cute little face, his cute little hair.”

Teddy, a Norwegian elk hound, was also being shown Sunday. His co-owner, Kylie West, of Bronson, said he does very well in the ring.

“He shows great,” West said. “He’s a real big specialty winner.”

In fact, according to her, Teddy is so good, there isn’t much to actually improve on.

“He’s good in everything,” she said. “He’s been showing for three years. I don’t think he can improve.”

-Messenger photo by Peter Kaspari
Debbie Kailer, from Wisconsin, grooms her Pomeranian, Ben, before he goes into the ring at the Fort Dodge Kennel Club dog show Sunday.

West’s friend, Ronnie Crowder, gave Teddy some pre-show scratches and back rubs.

“He’s a cool dog and the best temper ever,” he said. “And if you’re sitting, he’s in your lap.”

Bella, a yellow Labrador and her owner, Tawnya Lichtenwalter, of Winterset, were practicing before the rally show. Bella successfully held her paw above her head and lay down on her belly during the practice.

“We do rally because it’s fun,” Lichtenwalter said. “She loves to do this and she loves to train.”

And Bella is very good at competing in shows.

-Messenger photo by Peter Kaspari
Ronnie Crowder gives Teddy, a Norwegian elk hound, some encouragement before the dog competed Sunday at the Fort Dodge Kennel Club dog show.

“It’s her mom that has problems sometimes,” Lichtenwalter said with a laugh.

Mary Ann Roux served as this year’s show chair.

“It’s been very good,” she said. “A lot of people come from all over to show.”

There are small changes from year to year when it comes to the show.

“Every year we have different judges,” Roux said. “There are new people that come.”

-Messenger photo by Peter Kaspari
Bella, a yellow Labrador, appears to float in mid-air as she jumps over the bar during the obedience trials at the Fort Dodge Kennel Club dog show. Her owner, Tawnya Lichtenwalter, of Winterset, looks on at left.

She added that outsiders may think dog shows are easy, but there’s quite a bit that goes into them.

“There’s all kinds of grooming and care,” she said. “You don’t see all the behind-the-scenes work.”

-Messenger photo by Peter Kaspari
Arie, a half Shih Tzu, half Pekingese, poses with the ribbons she won during the obedience trials at the Fort Dodge Kennel Club dog show Sunday.

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