Dog days at fairgrounds |

Dog days at fairgrounds

They’re not welcome in the flowers or bathrooms, but dogs otherwise have the run of the Nevada County Fairgrounds today and Sunday during the fourth annual All Breed Dog Show.

More than 500 owners and breeders have entered 135 of the 150 breeds recognized by the American Kennel Club in what show Chairwoman Barbara House calls the largest AKC-approved show in the north state.

Each breed will be put through its paces both days. The seven best of breed winners will compete for the best of show title at 3 p.m. today at the carnival area.

But members of the sponsoring group, the Gold Country Kennel Club of Rough and Ready, can’t join the fun. Because the club recruits the judges for the show, members can’t enter their dogs.

More than 50 vendors will be selling food and dog-related items at the show, and a group of terriers – originally bred to catch varmints underground – will demonstrate their skills at a newly built network of tunnels near the pond. But, Assistant Chairwoman Betty Stites cautioned, “It’s not a great spectator event.”

It’s difficult for show organizers to estimate attendance because there is no admission charge, but they expect crowds of at least 3,000 each day. The number of dogs entered won’t be known until today.

Organizers point out that motels from Nevada City to Auburn are filling up with dog fanciers from throughout the West.

House, whose mastiffs, Siberian huskies and salukis consume 50 pounds of food a day, said the kennel club is active in the community promoting better understanding of dogs.

“We give a lot back to the community,” Stites said, noting that the 40-member club has purchased a narcotics dog for the county Sheriff’s Office, supports local animal shelters and contributes to local groups, such as the Nevada Union High School Choir.

Club members won’t get much rest after the show ends Sunday, Stites said. “Monday we start planning for next year’s show. We have to line up judges two to three years in advance.”

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