Brayden Anderson, 13, walks around her dog Tilly at a station in the rally event Tuesday morning at the Moffat County Fairgrounds. Anderson and Tilly took third place in rally, and won showmanship in the intermediate novice division at the 2013 Moffat County Fair Dog Show.

Photo by Nate Waggenspack

Brayden Anderson, 13, walks around her dog Tilly at a station in the rally event Tuesday morning at the Moffat County Fairgrounds. Anderson and Tilly took third place in rally, and won showmanship in the intermediate novice division at the 2013 Moffat County Fair Dog Show.

Youth show off their pups at Moffat County Fair Dog Show

2013 Moffat County Fair Dog Show winners

Grand Champion Advanced Handler Mitchell Davidson

Grand Champion: Novice Handler Brianna Burkett

Rally

Grand Champion: Mitchell Davidson

Novice A: Brianna Burkett

Novice B: Bryson Davis

Advanced A: Brittnee Meats

Advanced Excellent B: Mitchell Davidson

Obedience

Grand Champion: Hannah Coy

Beginner novice A: Hannah Coy

Beginner novice B: Ashley Wheeler

Beginner novice C: Amber Newell

Novice A: Brittnee Meats

Novice B: Elizabeth Tochtrop

Pregrad novice: Mitchell Davidson

Showmanship

Junior novice: Breeanna Meats

Intermediate novice: Brayden Anderson

Senior novice: Hannah Coy

Junior open: Kimber Wheeler

Intermediate open: Brittnee Meats

Senior open: Mitchell Davidson

A sign indicating no dogs or bikes are allowed in the Moffat County Fairgrounds livestock barn was half ignored Tuesday morning, as youth members of the community put their canines on display.

The 2013 Moffat County Fair 4-H Dog Show took place at the barn Tuesday, with locals putting their rapport with their dogs on the line in obedience and rally arenas. Children from ages 10 to 17 showed off the relationships they have developed over years of training with their dogs.

Most competitors had to deal with a hiccup in his or her performance sometime during the day, they all directed their animals admirably through the series of sits, turns and jumps on the rally course, showing off the teamwork that can be achieved between canine and human.

“You’re putting your teamwork on display (in rally),” said Kelly Davidson, a 4-H dog leader and superintendent. “You need good teamwork between the handler and dog.”

The competitors also had to work through obedience, walking their dogs around a ring with and without a leash, and getting them to sit and stay at the right times. Both events required concentration from the handlers and their dogs, but obedience especially requires precision.

“I think obedience is harder,” said Brittnee Meats, 12. “He (her dog, Charlie) doesn’t like it as much, he gets bored of it. Plus it’s very strict.”

Despite the difficult nature of the events, Meats felt she and Charlie had worked well together in her third year competing at the Fair Dog Show.

Mitchell Davidson, 15, has been competing in dog shows for seven years. His current partner, Rainy, and he had a good day Tuesday, winning their division in each category and earning Davidson the title of Grand Champion among advanced handlers.

“We did excellent in rally,” Davidson said. “In obedience she was lagging a couple times, but overall I think we did well.”

Davidson said success in handling a dog requires significant practice and time.

“You’ve got to have a good relationship with your dog, and train a lot,” he said. “You can’t just go to club meetings and practice there. You have to do work at home every day.”

Nate Waggenspack can be reached at 970-875-1795 or nwaggenspack@craigdailypress.com

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