The dog show world is something I have always been interested in but never thought I would get the chance to be a part of. When my husband Ross and I brought our Lagotto Romagnolo puppy Hudson home last year, he brought so much love into our world and he definitely kept us on our toes…this particular breed likes to keep busy!
In order to keep his mind active as well as his training skills up to date, we enrolled him in his first puppy class (Level One Basic Obedience). He excelled in this class and it was there that we knew he was a fast learner. Hudson learned many tricks including sit, down, stand, come and leave it, which are the necessities for puppy training.
We soon learned during this class that Hudson loves to learn and constantly wants to do the next trick. We took advantage of this situation and decided to enroll him in Level Two, which involved training that is more advanced. The class was definitely a challenge, but Hudson learned many new skills including the sphinx drop, around, and he was also able to get a taste of some basic agility equipment as well. We learned that since Hudson always wants to move onto the next trick, his stays are definitely something we need to work on, as he is a bit impatient!
As Hudson began to grow and mature, our breeder, Mari Szauerzopf, kept commenting on his body condition and mentioned how it would be worth showing him at a dog show. Being the competitive person that I am, I decided to give him a chance so we entered him into his first dog show at the Wildwood Kennel Club Dog Show in Woodstock this past February.
To prep Hudson for the dog show we took him to handling class with his handler, Sara Manzi. While we watched him learn how to stand in the ring and “show”, we were so amazed at how fast Hudson was learning. He never showed before…could he really be a dog show superstar?
Soon after, the first day of the dog show arrived! I was so nervous for Hudson and eagerly awaiting text messages from Sara about how he was doing at the event. All of a sudden, my phone goes crazy and the texts messages just kept coming in. Hudson won best of breed and then was heading off to compete against the rest of the sporting group. My nerves began to sink in and I was eagerly awaiting the next results. He won again! Hudson took home a group fourth placement, which is amazing for his first day. Ross and I were thrilled we could not wait to see what awaited Hudson in the new few days at the dog show.
In total, Hudson finished his championship, won three best of breeds and won two group fourth placements, all in one weekend. Not bad for a first timer! Ross and I were able to go watch Hudson in the dog show ring on one of the days. It was fascinating to watch how the judges pick the best dog and what they are looking for when a dog enters the show ring. I began to realize that putting him in a dog show had another benefit. He was getting used to being on leash with a new person (Sara) and having to listen to her commands, having a judge approach him and examine him, and having to be around other dogs and fight the urge to want to play or sniff them! Being at the dog show was exposing him to so many different things he had not been around before and I think it really helped him become a better and more socialized dog.
While Hudson was being judged, he received many compliments including that he was a beautiful dog and his coat was stunning. I have to thank his food for that. Hudson goes crazy for his Purina® Pro Plan® Chicken and Rice Formula. The minute I put his food down, he gobbles it up! It was awesome to hear these comments as a proud pet owner!
When we got home after the dog show I noticed how many ribbons Hudson received. I plan on making him a frame with all his awards in it and put it up on our wall. I think he deserves the credit!
So what’s in store for Hudson’s future? The sky is the limit! I really look forward to sharing the next exciting milestones with Hudson, my little furry superstar!