Well, Zeph took out First Place in his category, Novice Dog. I mentioned recently that Zeph would be going off to the Pointer championship show. He enjoyed a couple of days at the breeder’s kennels being washed and groomed, as well as having a pedicure. Zsa Zsa went with him for support as the two are pretty well inseparable.
Zeph isn’t really a show dog. To be a show dog takes a LOT of effort on the part of the owner and the dog. Practicing with show leads; running around in circles; stacking (which basically means asking your dog to stand squarely and still); and attending endless shows during showing season.
Our breeder asked to show Zeph because it’s true – he’s one handsome Pointer and he enjoys the whole look at me attention. We met his full brother, What, for the first time and we caught up with his sister, Cha, and his mum, Vera. Our friend, Stephanie who has five Pointers herself, was Zeph’s handler. I had to look after little diva dog, Zsa Zsa, and take photos. ZZ wasn’t very happy being at the show. She much prefers the creature comforts of home life.
El Hubs and I found that we didn’t enjoy the whole experience this time round. Mainly, this was due to the bitchy behaviour we observed amongst the doggy people. Things like one dog being up too close behind another dog in the show ring. We’ve been told that some people do this to psych out or disturb the other, rival dog. Or one breeder rolling her eyes behind the back of another breeder.
And then there was the stolen collar incident. Show dogs wear a special show lead so we took Zeph’s normal collar and lead off and somehow it went missing in the course of the afternoon. We retraced our steps and searched where the dogs had been waiting near the show ring – breeders bring along dog crates, tables and chairs, umbrellas, food etc and park their vans where the dogs often wait inside in comfort. It’s quite a social event. But it turned a bit sour when we realised that someone had stolen Zeph’s collar, name tag and leash.
We went to the lost and found office and they simply laughed and told us it happens all the time and kiss goodbye to Zeph’s stuff. Our breeder told us that people steal dog brushes and other grooming tools. What the? I thought horse show people were bad but this is ridiculous. We had to replace Zeph’s gear at a cost of around NZ $60.00, including the hassle of getting another dog tag engraved.
We’re now of two minds about the dog show thing. Zeph really seems to like it but Zsa Zsa doesn’t want a bar of it. She even refused a morsel of food the breeder gave her. Zsa Zsa? Refusing food? Unheard of.
It’s true that Zeph hasn’t had the sort of rigorous training that show dogs get because he’s a much loved and pampered pet. So it’s a bit unfair to expect him to just fling himself into it. But that’s what he seems to do when he hits the show. Guess we’ll see.