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Instinct Clinics (Mar 2-3)

MSDA’s Spring Sporting Group Show and All-Breed Obedience/Rally Trials will be March 2-4, 2018.

MSDA Spring Sporting Group Dog Shows and All-Breed Obedience & Rally Trials: three days of AKC-licensed events.

The dog-loving public is invited to attend!  Once again we will be at the Howard County Fairgrounds in West Friendship, MD. Parking is $4 per car, but there is no other admission fee. Limited food concessions are available on site. If you are interested in sporting dog breeds or obedience training for all dogs, the MSDA dog show is a wonderful place to learn more. Check the published schedule for judging times (available soon) for the breeds or obedience events that especially interest you. Although owners and handlers will be busy preparing dogs for judging before their time in the ring, you can view the dogs in their event and then afterwards have a chance to ask questions and make friends with owners, handlers and the dogs themselves. Dogs entered in these events are very friendly and love attention. Similarly, owners and handlers are very knowledgeable and are usually happy to share.

All obedience and conformation events are indoors. In addition, there are four just-for-fun “Instinct Clinic” sessions held outdoors on Friday and Saturday to introduce sporting dogs to field activities. Please note: Buildings will be busy and somewhat crowded during show hours, so only dogs entered in the events may be brought inside.

All conformation and obedience/rally entries are managed via Jim Rau Dog Shows. The dog show premium list is still available, but entries have now closed (except for the instinct clinics). If you have any questions , please contact Richard Jackson,  ShowChair@mdsportingdog.org or Pat Hess, ObedienceChair@mdsportingdog.org.

Here is the general schedule for the show and other activities, along with some preliminary counts.

Thursday, March 1st
No events. Show site opens for setup after 3:00 pm.
No admittance after 10 pm.

Friday, March 2nd
All Breed Obedience & Rally
(95 entries in obedience and 49 in rally)
Potomac Valley Golden Retriever Club Specialty
(86 entries in conformation, 49 in obedience, and 23 in rally)
MSDA Sporting Dog Instinct Clinics (9:30 am & 1:30 pm)

Saturday, March 3rd
All Breed Obedience & Rally
(116 entries in obedience and 59 in rally)
Sporting Breed Conformation
(571 entries in conformation, 15 in junior showmanship)
MSDA Sporting Dog Instinct Clinics (9:30 am & 1:30 pm)
MSDA Membership Meeting (after Best in Show)

Sunday, March 4th
All Breed Obedience & Rally
(131 entries in obedience, and 50 in rally)
Sporting Breed Conformation
(534 entries in conformation, 16 in junior showmanship)

Official show hours are 6:30 am – 6:30 pm Friday-Sunday, though judging doesn’t usually start until at least 8 am. Grounds are available 6:30 am – 10:00 pm each of those days. Once judging schedules are established, we’ll post more detailed event-specific timetables here.

Meanwhile, in addition to the 86 Golden Retriever entries for Friday’s Specialty, here are preliminary counts of conformation entries by breed. (Numbers in parentheses are # entries on Saturday and Sunday). ASCOB Cocker Spaniel (7, 7); Black Cocker Spaniel (4, 4); Brittany (18, 19); Chesapeake Bay Retriever (25, 26); Clumber Spaniel (3, 4); Curly-Coated Retriever (6, 4); English Cocker Spaniel (32, 30); English Setter (5, 5); English Springer Spaniel (24, 28); Field Spaniel (4, 3); Flat-Coated Retriever (40, 38); German Shorthaired Pointer (27, 27); German Wirehaired Pointer (3, 2); Golden Retriever (63, 49); Gordon Setter (7, 7); Irish Red & White Setter (5, 5); Irish Setter (18, 16); Irish Water Spaniel (27, 28); Labrador Retriever (57, 50); Lagotto Romagnolo (4, 3); Nederlandse Kooikerhondje (7, 7); Nova Scotia Duck Tolling Retriever (40, 27); Parti-color Cocker Spaniel (7, 6); Pointer (12, 14); Spinone Italiano (8, 11); Sussex Spaniel (8, 7); Vizsla (27, 29); Weimaraner (18, 17); Welsh Springer Spaniel (46, 42); Wirehaired Pointing Griffon (19, 19). We don’t seem to have any entries this year for American Water Spaniel, Boykin Spaniel, or Wirehaired Vizsla. Of course, all breeds, not just sporting group dogs, may be entered in the  MSDA obedience and rally events on Friday, Saturday, and Sunday. Even more detailed preliminary counts are available from Rau.

A map of key locations on the show grounds is shown below. (Click on the image to enlarge the map.)

Volunteers! It’s not too late (it’s never too late) to volunteer! Running a dog show with hundreds of entries is an enormous job. MSDA depends on volunteers to keep things moving smoothly. Volunteering also is a great way to meet people, learn about the events, and collect some wet doggy kisses. Experience is not required for many jobs and you can be a huge help even if you have only one or a few hours to contribute. Volunteers do not have to be MSDA members. Anyone who would like to help with this year’s show is asked to please contact the Show Chair, Richard Jackson. In particular,

  • Obedience and Rally Trials need a minimum of ten stewards each of three days, beginning a half hour before the trials start.  Although experienced stewards are needed, newcomers, with no experience stewarding, are also welcomed and needed.  If you think you will be able to help, please contact the Obedience and Rally Chair, Pat Hess.
  • The Instinct Clinics on Friday and Saturday need help checking in registrants at the field and letting everyone know who’s next. No experience is necessary and you can work at only one, or more than one, of the four sessions. Please contact Steve Roth to volunteer.

Sporting Dog Instinct Clinics

Also at the spring show, MSDA is offering four “Instinct Clinics” to introduce sporting dogs to birds and AKC hunting events. In the clinic we will look at prey drive, biddability in association with retrieving, and the instinct to hunt and find birds.  Instinct clinics will be held outside, in a field near the main show building. There will be no gunfire, but live birds (pigeons or quail) will be used. Your dog does not have to be entered in the dog show or obedience trials to participate in the Instinct Clinic. Click here for more information and to register online.

Member Meeting

The annual MSDA membership meeting will be held in the judges’ hospitality area of the main hall on Saturday after the conclusion of the Best-in-Show judging. Light dinner and other refreshments will be provided.


Check our Calendar for more MSDA activities.

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