Civic Center hosts Heart of the Plains Kennel Club dog show

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Updated: 9/30/2012 9:52 pm
Devoted dog owners from more than twenty different states came to Lubbock this weekend for the Heart of the Plains Kennel Club dog show.

"Well most of these people have been breeding and showing dogs for years and years, and the competition is actually to determine the best dog of its breed, and then to go on to the group, then best in show," said President Dana Brown.

With more than 500 entries, Brown said they had everything from retrievers to chihuahuas.

"Behind us is an obedience ring, where dogs have been trained to do heeling and jumping," Brown said. "It just depends on which side of the building you're on. We also have dogs that do agility, herding, hunting, tracking. So they're very versatile."

While each breed is judged differently, dog owner Peggy Demers said appearance and movement are key in every category.

"We want a nice long neck, and we want a really pretty head," Demers said. "You can see her head planes, where it goes to here, and then it comes back up. So she has a really beautiful head. And a nice earset, so her ears tip over just slightly like this, so she looks just kind of soft and sweet."

"They look for the way the dog is put together, the confirmation of the dog," dog owner Bette Tannen said. "They look for the gate, the movement of the dog, which are closely tied together, because if a dog is not put together properly, it's not going to move properly."

Tannen, whose dog Samson is a Hungarian Shepherd, said one of the most important parts of preparation is grooming.

"he gets showered, and the hardest part is getting the soap out of him. and then, to dry him, it takes a day and a half."

"There's a lot of grooming that goes into this to make their coat do exactly what you want for breed, which is to bring all this front up, and bring all this back down," Demers said. "So we do two opposite things so they don't look like a big cotton ball out there."

It looks like all that preparation paid off. Demer's dog Palin was Friday's winner in her group. Tannen's dog Samson is a grand champion, and has been in the top ten for the past nine years.
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