If you have a dog that drives you crazy, perhaps you should ask a 4-H'er how to get it under control. Saturday morning, the Pratt Area 4-H Center was filled with dogs and their owners, and there wasn't an ill-tempered one in the bunch.
4-H'ers of different ages and experience levels put their dogs through their paces, competing in the areas of Showmanship, Obedience and Rally Obedience.
According to Cynthia Aramowicz of the Extension Office, this is the first year for the obedience categories.
Rally Obedience is basically an obstacle course consisting of cones and directions. The contestants proceed through the course, getting their dogs to obey commands at various stations along the course according to directions given on signs, such as Stop, Weave, turn 270 degrees right, quick pace etc.
Since 4-H ribbons are presented on the basis of a point system, it is possible that no winner in a certain event/category might be awarded if no contestants perform well enough to warrant a ribbon.
Breanna Tatro with her dog Scout emerged as the day's big winner, sweeping Grand Champion in all three categories—Showmanship, Obedience and Rally Obedience. Kassandria Fox was reserve grand champion in Showmanship and Crystal Lukens was reserve grand champion in Rally Obedience.
Scout did double duty, also working with Justus Tatro to earn Grand Champion in Open Class Showmanship. Tyler Dorman was reserve grand champion in that class.
The Dog Show featured an international contestant, as Chinese exchange student Eunice Wang, who is staying with 4 different host families, participated. Wang is doing 4H events as a way to immerse herself in her host culture. She participated in Obedience and Rally Obedience categories.
The Dog Show was again a big success, not only for the contestants and their dogs, but also for those in the crowd who might have been able to pick up some pointers on how to deal with their own canines.
See the photo gallery at pratttribune.com for more pictures on contestants and dogs.