Kids and families are encouraged to come out to the 82nd annual Vancouver Island Dog Fanciers Association’s dog show this weekend, but please, leave your own dog at home.
“It’s just a distraction for the registered dogs,” said Ina Bureau, president of the association.
“We’re hoping that people who are looking for something fun and inexpensive to do with their kids, we’re hoping they’ll come,” said member and longtime Airedale breeder and trainer Joanne Helm.
The show will feature four All-Breed Championship shows, plus various obedience, agility and rally shows throughout the weekend.
Obedience and agility are always entertaining, but rally is really where it’s at when it comes to having fun, says Helm.
“It’s the most fun of anything you do as an owner.”
A cross between obedience and agility, rally is fast-paced and clever, and is growing as a sport in the dog show world.
The show is also a great place to get more information about specific breeds, says Caren Holtby, also a member of the association.
“There will be breeders available to answer questions,” she said.
“Anyone who’s looking for a dog, it’s a good place to come,” added Bureau, “because it’s the creme de la creme of dogs.”
Not everything will be dog-related, said Helm. The show will also have a variety of vendors available — all selling people food — for families to indulge in.
The public are also encouraged to bring donations of pet food and supplies, as the association is collecting donations for Our Place in Victoria.
Many of the homeless people who come to use Our Place’s services have pets and often aren’t able to get pet food, said Bureau.
“And if the bag is open, they’ll still take it. So if your own dog tried a new food and turned up his nose at it, bring it.”
The show runs from May 22 to 24 at the Saanich Fairgrounds, 1528 Stellys Cross Road in Saanichton.
Admission is free, and parking is available on the upper level of the fairgrounds.
For more information, including a detailed schedule of when specific breeds will be shown, visit bcdogshowservicesltd.ca.