Bhubaneswar: They are indeed man’s best friends; be it during morning walks in wintry mornings or on a day with lashing rain. Weather could not dampen the enthusiasm of spirited canines and their owners at the recently concluded National Dog Show in the Odisha capital.
Organised by Orissa Kennel Club (OKC) in SOA University Stadium here, this three-day event from Dec 8-10, saw a total of six shows where dogs of different breeds were evaluated on various parameters by renowned judges from countries like UK, Bulgaria, Philippines and Serbia. Despite the overcast sky and drizzle, dog lovers of the city thronged the venue to take a look at the array of canines competing for the champions’ tag and meet the distinguished judges.
Day one saw 31 labradors from Bhubaneswar, Puri Rourkela, Sambalpur, Mumbai, Chhattisgarh, West Bengal and Andhra Pradesh being judged by Yashodhara Hemchandra of Kennel Club of India and a pet behavioural consultant who is a known name in the world of professional dog breeders.
While Karan Singh Walia’s pet Make You Wish of Mumbai bagged the position of 1st Best in the show, Parekh’s Buttery, the beloved dog of Animesh Mohanty of Cuttack, secured the tag of being the 2nd Best in the show.
Futhermore, 34 Rottweilers participated in the first Rottweiler National Show held in eastern part of India, hosted by Rottweiler Club of India, in association with OKC. Miomir Marcic from Serbia, an expert on this breed of dogs, was the judge who awarded the first position to Maynerd’s Blazing Fire, canine of P V L T Raju from Vizag and second position to Little Boy of Gehlaut, who belongs to Rabindra Nath Sahoo from Bhubaneswar.
While visitors were bustling around clicking selfies with many of the four-legged participants, owners were busy grooming their pets by brushing their hair and feeding them. Every entrant was allotted a ‘room’ to practice tricks, get groomed, eat and rest.
Obedience trials and German Shepherd Dog speciality show were held on Dec 9 where Stealth Paws Zina of Masood Ahemad was the winner followed by Ayan of Renaissance of J S Sagar in the second position. Spectators got a first-hand view of the demanding C-6 round, which is the highest degree of obedience training of dogs.
Obedience trials include basic skills of dogs like obeying commands such as ‘sit’, ‘stand’, ‘fetch’, etc. to more advanced versions like scent walks to test their cognitive expertise. This round was assessed by J Rangaranjan, an eminent canine trainer who lead the Canine Good Citizen Programme in the country.
“There was no registration fee of any kind because canine owners themselves have to bear travel and accommodation expenditure of their pets. The pièce de résistance is the certificate awarded to the winners of each show and their owners by reputed judges, ” said Siddharth Mohanty, Treasurer-Joint Secretary of Orissa Kennel Club.
German Shepherd Dog (GSD) speciality exhibit saw about a hundred competitors where German Shepherds were judged on qualities such as agility and seagull training among others, by Heather MacDonald from Scotland, the famed judge of GSD breed shows in UK who painstaklingly observed all the 90 German Shepherds and gave remarks on each of their owners and handlers.
The grand finale had 300-odd dogs of various breeds contesting for the top rank in the 54th and 55th All Breeds Championship and were judged by former President of Philippine Canine Club Inc Mario Magsaysay and Nikolina Davidovska, a breed speciality judge of international repute. German Shepherds Pina and Yasko were adjudged winners in the 54th and 55th All Breed Shows, respectively.
It was a gala show at the SOA stadium as it was filled with canine owners, dog lovers and visitors. A total of 270 dogs of 33 breeds such as labradors, rottweilers, pugs, dobermans, dalmatians, St. Bernards, including bull terriers, chow chows and chihuahuas, that are not seen often in India, participated.
Many pets along with their owners were put up in local hotels in the city and were ferried in vehicles for their respective shows as arranged by OKC. The panel of international judges, some of who were visiting India for the first time, gave insightful comments to the dog lovers on nurturing their pets.
“We had about five veterinary doctors, security set-up and an ambulance on standby in case of any emergency. We also paid special attention to the maintanence of the grounds where the event was being hosted,” said Subrat Ranjan Prusti, the Secretary of OKC.