World Show Paris July 2011

Attending the World Show in Paris this year with my Silky Terrier Ch. Carwyn Tessier By Innovation (“Rocket”) was an adventure.

As a seasoned dog person I thought I knew the usual ways of a show. But this was completely different. The French Kennel Club, in its wisdom, had decided that Americans and Eastern Europeans could pick up their entry passes inside, at the show. But without the correct paperwork there was a certain amount of begging involved just to in the door. Then there was a line for the vet to confirm that Rocket’s rabies certificate was in order. Then we waited with 300 other stressed exhibitors to pick up our entry passes. Whew! Now we were official. It was all downhill from there; only the small matter of finding our ring somewhere in the two cavernous halls.

So I’m finally sitting ringside, red faced and panting. Rocket, cool as a cucumber is standing next to me on the grooming table, tail wagging. Rocket is great in stressful situations. If he can “play” with me (and showing is his favorite game) nothing else matters. He butts me with his nose as if to ask: “Ready?”

“Sure Rocket.” I straighten up and take a deep breath. “Let’s play.”

Mr. Always On and Never Off is an American champion, but that doesn’t count in Europe. He was entered as a non-champion in the Open Dog class. Additionally, Champions and non-champions go toe to toe for the CACIB (which is the equivalent of our Winner’s Dog or Bitch). Rocket can hold his own against anyone, even top ranked champions, so I wasn’t concerned.

Showing in Europe is very casual and it resembles Grand Central Station. The ring stewards are inside the ring, on the far side, so everyone has to walk in between the ongoing competition to get their armbands. As the judge sorts through his entries, he leaves the winners of each class off to one side but still in the ring for later contention.  Then he turns back and asks the winners to gait again, or come on the table again, as he wishes. Or he just casually swings his hand at the winners and walks away. Words most often heard in the ring are “Huh?” and “What did he say?” Certainly less tense than an American show ring, but definitely more confusing.

Here is a link to my video of the Best Bitch and Best of Breed class:

How did Rocket do? He showed his heart out and strutted his stuff all the way around the ring at the tippy-tip end of his lead, being the true Show Dog he is. He got an “Excellent” and a card that said he took RCASC, which sounds impressive but means he took reserve to first in his class. Let’s call that second, shall we? I didn’t really care. I thought he was amazing.

This is Rocket at World Show, strutting his stuff.

 

This is the second World Show Rocket and I have attended, and while I think it will be a while before I go back to France, I would go to another World Show in a different country in a heart beat. The exhibitors were kind and friendly and it was eye opening to move out of my comfort zone and show in another system.

 

I’ve heard that next year it’s in Salzburg, Austria. Hmmm! That sounds like fun!

This is George, Rocket and I enjoying a nice meal at a bistro down the road from the hotel

This is George, Rocket and I enjoying a nice meal at a bistro down the road from the hotel

 

 

 

 

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