It’s said that every dog has its day and last Saturday was definitely the moment for the more than 100 canines at Nakuru Athletics Club to put their best paws forward.
The third edition of the show was a huge success. The Nakuru Pets Festivals was full of fun and drew crowds.
The dogs greeted, danced and competed in an obedience test.
Dog lovers from Nairobi, Nakuru and nearby counties narrated how their relationship with the pets had improved their lives.
“Dogs bring people together. They offer us the ability and strength to explore important stories through our relations with friends and family,” Ms Linda Nyawira said.
The show was also meant to demystify the idea that dogs are only kept for security purposes.
“Dogs are much more than this. Once you are used to having a dog, your life is diminished without one. The dog opens my heart,” Ms Nyawira, who is the event manager, said of her German shepherd.
Ms Damaris Kelly described her dog as “a heartbeat at my feet”.
“A dog will fill your life and that of your family with love and excitement and ask nothing in return. The true and sincere excitement of your dog the moment you enter the house is irreplaceable,” Ms Kelly said.
According to Ms Judy Leah, experience has shown her that a dog is a human being’s best friend.
“When I get home, I forget the bad day at the office when my dog runs towards me. Dogs are wonderful animals. They speak, but only those who understand them listen,” Ms Leah said.
The fair celebrated the companionship of dogs while promoting responsible pet ownership, health, breed preservation and what breeds fit particular family lifestyles.
All the dogs at the show were vaccinated against rabies, courtesy of the Nakuru devolved government.
According to a study published by Mayo Clinic, one of the largest non-profit health organisations in the United States, people with pets – especially dogs – are likely to have better cardiovascular and mental health.
“Dogs improve the intelligence of mentally challenged children. They teach the young ones to be responsible,” Ms Nyawira said.
Ms Alvine Kerubo said petting a dog can improve one’s blood pressure. “I am healthy because of my pet. It gets me off the couch or out of bed and runs in the house. She keeps me moving as much as possible,” she said.
For Mr Vincent Ogolla, a dog is the true friend of man. “It is loyal, lovable and gorgeous. A dog will love you more than you love yourself,” he said.
Tail wagging was common sight at the festival, with owners attempting to prove that their pets knew more tricks than others.
Dogs, on the other hand, got along with others and growled at the ones they were not comfortable with.
German shepherds dominated the event that was organised by Concierge Mediacom.
There were other breeds like Maltese, Great Dane, Rottweiler, Japanese Spitz and terriers.
Every dog was required to walk before the judges and got marks for body structure, movement, size, bone structure, teeth and coat.
They competed for the happiest, healthiest, best groomed, well-handled, best communicating, agility, tracking and obedience awards.
Mr Bennyhinn Kamwaga’s dog Brunah was declared the happiest while the trophy for the healthiest went to Ranger, which was handled by Blue Line Kennels.
Mr Kevin Mwangi’s dog Troy was the best groomed while the best handled animal was Missy, belonging to Ms Eustace Warutere.
The award for the best communicating dog went to Black, owned by De souza Kennel.
The judges were Dr Imbugi Luvai and Ms Linda Brown.
Also at the festival were exhibitors of pet products. Dog beds, chews of different flavours, collars, bowls, combs and scissors were among items displayed and sold.