There was a time when the American Kennel Club discouraged dog-show exhibitors from bringing along the really young (under six months) puppies, presumably out of a desire to preserve order in the show ring. Now there are classes for puppies as young as four months; the first time I heard of this, I asked when they were going to start judging embryos.
But this is weirder than anything I could have come up with:
The Stuffed Dog Class Special Attraction is a pre-Pee Wee Competition class. The Stuffed Dog class is geared toward children 2–4 years of age.
Each Stuffed-Dog unit consists of the child, his/her parent/guardian/responsible adult, and the child’s stuffed dog. Only one Stuffed-Dog unit is in the ring at a time. This is not a competitive class, but rather a fun, learning experience for the child and the adult.
- All stuffed dogs must be supplied by the parent/guardian/responsible adult and must have a proper lead and collar.
- A responsible adult must be present with the child both inside and outside the ring.
One assumes that the Stuffed Dog will be well-behaved in the ring. The kid holding the lead, maybe not so much.
This is not a regular feature yet: I’ve seen it announced in only a single evemt so far. But as Dylan might say, it’s only the one, and it’s out there on Highway 61.