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Barking Past the Competition
AMANA, IA (CBS2/FOX28) This is Lizzy, and its her first show. Shes six months old. And this is angel, said handler Lee Kouski at the Five Seasons Dog Show.
For nearly all the handlers at the Five Seasons Dog Show, their relationship with their animal doesnt exist only in the ring.
"They're my babies, said handler Ashley West. They sleep with me or my dad and spend a lot of time together, walking and training.
"I have to know if I have to adjust what she's doing or not. So, you get to learn how they feel on the leash and how they're doing, said Kouski.
"You get some dogs that are like class clowns and some dogs that feel like they have the weight of the world on their shoulders, said handler Edward Fojtik.
Dogs and handlers can be in shows nearly every weekend of the year. Some as a hobby and others as a full-time profession.
"This is one of the only true sports where professionals and amateurs compete together in the same ring at the same level, said Show Chair of the Cedar Rapids Kennel Association Cindy McDonald.
Some people who show their dogs hit the road for weeks or even months at a time, making outdoor tents and motor homes the norm for humans and their canine companions.
"It becomes so much of an activity that you get involved in that you want to do so bad, said judge Roger Hartinger.
Sometimes making it hard to tell who owns who.
"You can see it in the eyes of these dogs, said McDonald. They're just like, 'Oh, I love this. This is great. You're my person."