The Electric City Kennel Club holds its annual Big Sky Fall Cluster dog show at the Four Seasons Arena in Great Falls.
Great Falls hosts dog show
The Big Sky Cluster All Breed Dog Show features over 100 breeds competing in compliance and obedience.
The show has been going on for over 60 years.
Kennel Club Treasurer Christian McClelland said: “The dog shows themselves are the second oldest sporting event, only behind the Kentucky Derby and that’s only a year old. Dog shows have a lot evolved. Every year the American Kennel Club studies new breeds. And I think we’re close to 200 breeds right now.”
The Westminster Kennel Club, which was formed in the 1870s by a group of dog lovers, is the second-oldest continuously held sporting event in the United States, behind only the Kentucky Derby. Think of it as the Super Bowl of the dog world.
McClelland noted the fact that while there is fun at the event, there are also a lot of challenges. Success mainly depends on the owner and how he educates his dogs.
Gwen Haynes is from Calgary, Canada. She has been competing for over 20 years. She said the preparation leading up to the competition takes a long time to describe. In short, it’s training, training, training.
“On top of that, you need to start with a passionate dog and good training mentors. Classes are extremely important, and then you see how your dog performs when you come to these shows.”
Haynes said despite the intense competition, at the end of the day, it’s friendly competition. She mentioned what she appreciates the most about events like this.
Haynes said, “I love being able to see people and watch the dogs having a lot of fun. Whether they pass, fail, or fail, they do just fine. You come home to the best dog every day.”
The dog show will continue until October 10e from 9am-5pm (Facebook says 8am, but organizers say they officially start at 9am.)
admission is free and open to the public