Now that Spring has sprung and summer is fast approaching, more and more spectators will have the chance to make their way to a dog show. As dog fanciers, it’s our job to be kind and welcome the visitors with open arms and open minds.

I know the expression, “Easier said than done,” may apply here for many of us. It’s not because we’re not willing to assist spectators who may want to learn more about our sport, it’s simply because many of us keep ourselves very busy at shows.


Let’s not forget that dog shows can be fun even when we’re very busy or the weather doesn’t exactly cooperate.

Whether you’re a breeder/owner-handler at a local show with multiple dogs, a professional handler with a whole string of dogs, a junior handler working hard to gain wins to qualify for the most prestigious events or an assistant learning and growing through working with others, the dog show world is – bottom line – a fast-paced world.

But it is Spring, and sometimes we all have to stop and smell the roses, so to speak.

Some shows will attract more spectators than others, depending on the location and show times. Many people tend to come out to big shows in popular places, but there are also a few shows that start at later hours in the day that seem to attract a bigger audience.

Some Group shows even start in the evening. For spectators and exhibitors who have to work during the day, these shows are especially welcomed. In fact, the change of pace for some fanciers is a nice option.

For example, nothing stopped these fanciers from attending a recent Group show in New Jersey that started at 6 p.m….


Handlers line up their Old English Sheepdogs at an evening Group show.

All of us are responsible for welcoming newcomers and for treating other exhibitors with respect. Being kind to those who may be learning about our sport will increase our own happiness, and it might even put a smile on our faces.

Kindness is contagious. So let’s all do ourselves and everyone else in the community a favor and take the time to help spectators who are eager to learn more about purebred dogs!

P.S. Dogs Freakin Rule!