McAlester News-Capital, McAlester, OK

October 12, 2013

It’s a dogs’ day at Sooner State Kennel Club Dog show

By Phyllis Zorn, Staff Writer
Enid News and Eagle

ENID, Okla. — More than 440 dogs from Afghans to Whippets were in Enid in the Sooner State Kennel Club Dog Show this weekend, coming from as far away as Hawaii and Canada.

Carmen Herbel Spears, show chairman, said the show has been held in Enid — with only one exception — since 1949.

“The only year we did not hold a show here was the year Enid was building this building,” Herbel said.

The dog show is being held at Chisholm Trail Expo Center and is scheduled to run through 3 p.m. today.

In the show ring dogs were paraded before the judges, who sized up whether they meet the standards of their breed and know how to carry themselves. Judges take into account the dogs’ physical structure including head, teeth, feet, bone structure, and muscle tone; condition including weight, coat and animation; gait as observed from front, side and rear; and temperament.

Meanwhile, in the obedience trials, dogs dashed through tunnels, leaped over hurdles, walked up one side of a seesaw and down the other, jumped up on a table, climbed up and down a ladder and wove between rows of posts.

Dog owners and dog show enthusiasts sink a lot of time, effort and money into the sport, Spears said.

“Most people are showing their dogs to exhibit their treasures,” Spears said.

Bonnie Clark, who has judged dogs since 1982 and will judge 42 competitions this year, agreed. Clark came from her home in North Carolina to judge in Enid.

“Dog shows are a family sport,” Clark said. “We will see everyone from infants to great-grandparents. It’s a wonderful way to spend the weekend. They can compete in showmanship and agility.”

Clark said families contemplating getting a dog can come see different breeds at a dog show and ask the owners questions.

“All puppies are cute, but the characteristics the dog was bred for are still in them,” Clark said.