Man’s best friends are taking over University of Phoenix Stadium this weekend for the Great Arizona Dog Show.

Mike Doty, cluster chairman for the dog show, said the event really has something for everyone.

“It’s a real family event,” Doty said. People can pet the animals, but Doty said it is best to ask first.

Representing American Kennel Club dog clubs in the west and northwest Valley, Kachina Kennel Club and Arrowhead Kennel Club organized the event, which offers a variety of activities with competitions showcasing examples of various breeds, and the opportunity to learn about different breeds — why they look like they do, what they were bred to do, how breeders are working to maintain the individuality among breeds, and most importantly, which breed best fits into your lives.

“Agility is always a big crowd pleaser,” Doty said of the competitions. “Obedience is always fascinating to watch.”

The dog show kicked off Thursday but runs through Monday.

While some handlers showed their dogs in the variety of arenas on the stadium floor on Thursday afternoon, others, like Californian Bruce Schultz, groomed their dogs in preparation for upcoming competitions.

Schultz said he has been showing other people’s dogs for the last 40 years, and has 15 dogs in this show, including a beagle, bloodhound, Afghan hound and Golden Retriever.

Robin Olsen showed her champion female Cavalier King Charles spaniel Darby Thursday afternoon, and said she always enjoys participating in the shows.

Olsen who lives in Mesa has been showing for 15 years, and Darby is her fourth champion.

“I like the relationship with the dogs,” Olsen said.


• WHAT: The Great Arizona Dog Show

• WHEN: 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. through Monday

• WHERE: University of Phoenix Stadium, Loop 101 and Glendale Avenue.

• INFORMATION: The event is $10 for adults, $8 for seniors, children over 13, and military. Children 12 and under are free.

For a $1 off coupon and a complete schedule, visit


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