Head down to Williamson County Ag Expo Center this weekend for the 2018 Country Music Cluster Dog Show. Presented by The Nashville and Tullahoma Kennel Clubs, you’ll be right in the midst of the competition.
March 8, 2018
Nothing sounds more exciting to a dog person than the thought of being surrounded with hundreds of different breeds of dogs, all groomed and spiffed up and ready to vie for the chance to be Best in Show.
If you want to be in the middle of all the excitement and pageantry (and all the wet noses and fluffy tails) then head down to Williamson County Ag Expo Center this weekend for the 2018 Country Music Cluster Dog Show. Presented by The Nashville and Tullahoma Kennel Clubs, you’ll be right in the midst of the competition.
The world of dog sports/competitions can get pretty complicated sometimes for the novice spectator. And what exactly is a Conformation Show, anyway?
Although it sounds and looks glamorous, according to the American Kennel Club “…the true purpose of conformation showing is to evaluate breeding stock. The dog’s conformation—his overall appearance and structure—is an indication of the dog’s ability to produce quality purebred puppies, and that is what is being judged in the ring.
(Now if you have a bonafide mixed breed mutt – don’t worry! Mixed Breed Dog Clubs of America “is a national organization that hosts dog shows for mixes and mutts, and runs them in much the same way the American Kennel Club runs their shows.”)
At the all-breed Country Music Cluster, you’ll see dogs from different breeds competing in each of the seven Groups: Sporting, Hound, Working, Terrier, Toy, Non-Sporting and Herding. And the winners from each Group go on to compete for Best in Show.
The Country Music Cluster runs from Thu Mar 8 – Sun Mar 11 beginning at 8AM. Parking at the Ag Center is $5 per day or $15 for the entire run of the show. Admission is FREE. If you have a specific breed you’d like to see in the ring, make sure you check the time and ring assignment on the Judging Program posted at Nashville Kennel Club.
Unless your dog is entered, you’ll need to leave them at home for this event. And if you’re bringing the littles, please be aware that strollers are not allowed in the arena.
The good news is that there is plenty of seating in the stadium where you will have a fantastic view of all the rings. Concessions are also available.
Boxers, Goldens and Aussies – lots happening at once!
Of course, you can get right down in the middle of the action ringside.
We’re just a bit partial to Aussies. Just a bit.
Walking around the perimeter of the arena gives you an opportunity to see lots of different breeds and to observe the intricate grooming taking place.
Vendors are also set up at one end where you can find leads, collars, dog treats and all types of novelties for the dog lover in your life – probably YOU!
If you’re new to the dog show world, keep in mind a couple things…
~ No matter how tempting, DO NOT pet any dog unless you have asked permission first. Many of the dogs have just had lots of time and energy spent on their grooming for the ring and you don’t want to mess up that style!
~ It’s close quarters around the rings, so keep an eye open that little ones don’t poke fingers into any crates or puppy noses! Also, keep your food and drink up at the stadium seating.
~ Dog shows are a great way to meet breeders and handlers and gather information. Remember to always ask if it is a good time to talk, as they may be awaiting their ring assignment or be nervous about getting ready to show their dog. Respect their time and ask when would be a good moment to chat.
Wear comfortable shoes and um, watch your step! Even the best trained dogs can have accidents.
Want to learn even more? There’s a wealth of information at the American Kennel Club site.
Dog shows are fascinating, but you’ll be wanting to get home as fast as possible to your own Best in Show!