The Columbus Kennel Club's annual dog show is today

After two years in the Exchange Club of Phenix City's Horse Show Grounds, the Columbus Kennel Club moved its annual dog show back to Lakebottom Park last year.

This year, the CKC has a new home on the ground of North Highland Assembly of God Church on Whittlesey Blvd. The show is Saturday.

Anita Rabidou, who is with the CKC, said the grounds are beautiful and the organization is thankful that the church has allowed the dog show there Saturday.

New this year is the blessing of the animals at 11:15 a.m. by Pastor Dennis Lacey. It's open to all dogs, not just the ones who are in the show. In fact, if you're not showing a dog, you can bring yours from home. Just be sure it's on a leash at all times.

Another new feature is the microchip clinic conducted by PAWS Columbus from 10 am.-2 p.m. It's just $25 for the microchip, identification tag and registration into the registry database.

For the dog show itself (conformation), registration begins at 9 a.m., with judging at noon.

Trish James' 6-month-old Vizsla puppies — Xindi, Kudzu and Voxx — will be competing in the ring Saturday. As Kudzu began barking, James said he does the talking for his sisters. Then he turned around and smiled.

"We had a very small litter," James said. She and her husband, Wayne, who own Trinity Farm in Seale, where they breed Vizslas, Hungarian pointing dogs. She wanted a dog she could show; he wanted a dog he could hunt with. They came up with the perfect dog — the Vizsla.

"We decided to keep them together," James said of the three siblings. "I'll train them for field trials and competitions. We elected not to sell them as pets. I want people to see that this generation is better than the generation before them."

Nancy Valaske brought her Bouvier de Flandres, a Flanders cattle dog, Bunny, as an example of a different kind of dog that will be shown Saturday.

Bunny is just 2-years-old and weighs 85 pounds. Valaske keeps Bunny's long coat mat-free by brushing her at least once a week.

So is Bunny a good companion?

"These are the best," Valaske claimed.

Brenda Gallops may disagree. She is one of two breeders of Kerry Blue Terriers in Georgia. She brought 3-year-old Gracie, who was bread at Gallops' Brenril Kennels in Pine Mountain Valley.

Robert, a somewhat overweight 6-year-old yellow Labrador, will be competing in the obedience ring. He spent most of the afternoon lying on the floor. Owner Anita Rabidou, whose husband, Mike Milligan, is the CKC's newly installed president, breeds German shepherds. She brought 11-month-old Johnny, a shepherd and 9-year-old Lilly, a golden retriever, with Robert. She also has two shepherds, Emma, a year old, and Suzie, who is 2.

Rabidou said the grounds of the church is much larger than Lakebottom Park. "And they've got huge parking lots," which is one thing Lakebottom lacks.

"The grounds are beautiful and they've welcomed us with open arms," she said.

Besides the American Kennel Club-sanctioned events, there's a fun event for everyone to enter — the best-dressed dog contest. There will be prizes for best-dressed male dog, best-dressed female dog, the best owner-dog look-alike and child-dog look-alike. The child must be 17 or younger. Entry fee is $2 and the contest will start around 3 p.m.

The CKC will also present checks to PAWS Columbus ($3,000), Presents 4 Pets ($500) and the South Georgia Rescue Dogs ($3,000).IF YOU GOWhat: The Columbus Kennel Club's annual show, including All Breed obedience, rally, AKC-sanctioned B-OB Match, Canine Good Citizenship certification, blessing of the animals, microchip clinic, classes for junior handlers, Best-Dressed Dog ContestWhen: 9 a.m.-4 p.m. SaturdayWhere: The grounds of North Highland Assembly of God Church, 7300 Whittlesey Blvd.Entry fees: $7 for the conformation competition; $15 for Good Canine Citizen; $2 for the Best-Dressed Dog ContestTickets: Free admissionInformation: 706-327-7081

DOG OWNER ETIQUETTEDogs must be on a leashNo dogs younger than 3 months old are allowedAll dogs must have current rabies certificateNo female dogs in heatOwners must pick up after their dogsBe mindful of the off-limits areas

SPECTATOR ETIQUETTEDo not tough the dogs without asking the owners firstDo not talk to the owners while they are getting ready to go into the ringDo not make sudden loud noisesDo not make any sudden movesDo not run around the areas where the dogs are getting prepared for the ring or near the ring during conformationDo ask owners about various breeds that you may think about buying