2011 International Cluster of Dog Shows

February 25, 2011 4:36:50 AM PST
The International Kennel Club (IKC) of Chicago will host the 2011 International (IKC) Cluster of Dog Shows, drawing the top dogs from across the United States and Canada to compete for prizes and the coveted title of "Best in Show."

One of the largest all-breed benched dog shows in the country, the shows will take place at Chicago's McCormick Place North Building, 2301 S. Lake Shore Drive, on Saturday and Sunday February 26 & 27 from 8am-5pm. A great event for families, again this year admission is free for children 12 and under with the purchase of an adult ticket.

The International Cluster of Dog Shows annually attracts over 60,000 visitors to observe more than 10,000 purebred dogs from 167 breeds demonstrate their skills in a variety of competitions and demonstrations. Judged competitions include conformation and obedience; the Best in Show Amateur-Owner-Handler Competition; Junior Dog Judging, offered exclusively this weekend for children ages 9 - 19; and the Puppy Spectacular featuring the finest puppies aged 6 months to 12 months competing for "Best Puppy In Show." Using a unique "Chicago-style" no-benches format, guests are also encouraged to meet and greet with dogs and their handlers when they aren't competing.

Additionally, demonstrations at this year's show will highlight features unique to specific breeds including Earth Dog, displaying how small terriers and dachshunds were once bred as hunting dogs, and Drill Team featuring dogs using music and movements to "dance" with their handlers and showcase teamwork, artistry, athleticism and style. Other demonstrations include Search and Rescue, Obedience, and Agility, plus the opportunity to "Meet the Breeds" as the newest breeds are welcomed to the American Kennel Club such as the Cane Corso, Icelandic Sheepdog, and Leonberger.

"The Kennel Club shows are not only a great activity for those in the market for a pet, but also anyone looking for a warm indoor winter activity," said Louis Auslander, President of the International Kennel Club of Chicago, Inc. "With exciting demonstrations like agility and drill team and the unique opportunity to get up, close and personal with the dogs, there really is something for everyone!"

The International Cluster of Dog Shows also presents an array of dog-related retail and breed rescue booths featuring artwork, novelty dog wear, organic pet food, grooming products, exercise equipment, and everything in between; educational seminars on topics ranging from pet care to breed selection; performance events such as the Purina® Pro Plan® Canine Performance Team; representatives from non-profit rescue organizations with information about adoptable pets looking for a home; and the opportunity to get an expert-led tour of the dog show, offering a primer on everything that goes on both behind-the-scenes and as part of the judging program. In addition, show visitors will have the opportunity to win a year's supply of Purina® Pro Plan® brand pet food by stopping by the Pro Plan® booth.

About the Competition:

At the International Cluster of Dog Shows dogs are judged in a tiered format - first by Class (with six categories per breed), followed by a Winners Class competition, consisting of winners from the Class judging. Next is a Best of Breed competition with the two remaining dogs from the Winners competition (one male and one female dog). The dogs chosen from this competition (one dog per breed) are then called to compete in one of seven groups (Sporting, Hound, Working, Terrier, Toy, Non-Sporting, and Herding) and the seven group winners then meet in the final competition where one is ultimately chosen "Best in Show." Judges review physical structure, condition, coat, gait, and temperament when reviewing a dog and aim to find the perfect dog of a particular breed. There will be approximately 65 judges from across the country, Europe & Canada at the International Cluster of Dog Shows.

About the 2011 International Cluster of Dog Shows:

The 2011 International Cluster of Dog Shows, presented by the International Kennel Club of Chicago, will be held on Saturday, February 26 and Sunday, February 27, 2011 from 8:00am - 5:00pm at McCormick Place, North Building, 2301 S. Lake Shore Drive, Chicago. Tickets are $18 for adults; children 12 and under are free with the purchase of an adult ticket. Tickets will be sold at the door only on Saturday and Sunday. For $2 off coupon, ticket pricing, schedules, and more information visit www.ikcdogshow.com or call 773-237-5100.

Purina Pro Plan is the proud sponsor of the 2011 International Cluster of Dog Shows.

Established in 1900, the International Kennel Club of Chicago hosts two benched AKC Dog Shows per year, supports the work being done by the AKC Canine Health Foundation, and offers AKC Canine Good Citizen tests.

2011 International (IKC) Cluster of Dog Shows
McCormick Place North Building
2301 S. Lake Shore Drive
Sat. & Sunday