FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Jan. 8, 2014
For additional information,
Contact: Amanda Shell
The top spaniels from home and abroad will strut their stuff at the Knoxville Convention Center for a chance to be awarded “Best in Show” at the 94th Annual American Spaniel Club (ASC) Flushing Spaniel Show, January 10-12 from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m.
At the event’s third year in Knoxville, more than 700 spaniels will compete by breed in several categories, including showmanship, obedience, conformation and rally. Dogs and their handlers are expected from all over the world, including Australia, England and Denmark.
“The Flushing Spaniel Show is open to the public and is a great opportunity for people to learn more about caring for pure breeds and dog shows,” said Event Chair Jane Williams. “We have a great roster of very competitive dogs this year. These are the best spaniels in the country.”
Besides the grand award of “Best in Show,” dogs also will be selected in the categories of “Best Veteran in Show,” “Best Puppy in Show” and “Best Owner Handled in Show.”
Dog shows are one of the oldest sporting events in the country with origins dating to 1877. The Flushing Spaniel Show occurs one month before one of the most prestigious dog events in the country – the Westminster Kennel Club Dog Show. Many of the spaniels competing in Knoxville will be the top competitors at the New York City dog show on Feb. 10-11 at famous Madison Square Garden.
“This competition was referred to our facility from another property operated by our management company, SMG. We are thrilled to welcome these beautiful, talented dogs and their owners and handlers back to our facility for a third year,” said Mary Bogert, general manager of the Knoxville Convention Center. “This year, the show has expanded into our main exhibit hall to give plenty of room for these canine champions.”
Knoxville is also home to one of the country’s top dog breeders and handlers, Linda Pitts. Pitts has been training dogs for more than 40 years, and her dogs have placed “Best in Show” at the Flushing Spaniels Show, as well as at Westminster and other national competitions. This year, she has approximately 25 spaniels entered for the Knoxville competition.
“For people interested in this breed, this event is as big a deal as Westminster,” Pitts said. “This year, I have competing the top parti-colored Cocker in the country and several other young dogs, for whom we have very high hopes.”
The American Spaniel Club is the country’s premier organization for the promotion of the health and welfare of the spaniel breed. Part of the organization’s mission is to educate the public about raising and caring for the dogs. The dog show serves a dual purpose – to promote the breed and educate the public about pure breeds and competitive dog shows.
Flushing Spaniel breeds represented at the dog show include American Water Spaniel, Boykin Spaniel, Clumber Spaniel, Cocker Spaniel in three varieties, black, any solid color other than black (ASCOB) and parti-color, English Cocker, English Springer Spaniel, Field Spaniel, Sussex Spaniel and Welsh Springer Spaniel.
“Dog shows show the world your breeding stock and how your dog compares in your breed,” Pitts said. “The people who participate in dog shows love their animals and are very competitive. I get paid to do what I love.”
About the Knoxville Convention Center
The Knoxville Convention Center, managed by SMG, is located in downtown Knoxville adjacent to the Sunsphere. It boasts a 120,000-square-foot exhibit hall, a 27,000 square-foot divisible ballroom and up to 25 meeting rooms. For more information, visit http://www.knoxvilleconventioncenter.com.