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All-breed dog show in Great Falls

All-breed dog show in Great Falls
Posted at 9:17 AM, Jul 08, 2024

The Electric City Kennel Club (ECKC) is going on 70 years with their all-breed dog shows. This year they partnered with the Flathead Kennel Club for their annual conformation show.

The ECKC was established in 1957 to promote healthy purebred dogs.

“What we are is a local dog club that promotes purebred dogs and dog shows, but we also accept members that have non-purebred dogs, and we do conformation shows like this and then we do other events like scent work, agility, and fast cat,” said Christian McClelland, treasurer for the ECKC. 

The goals of the ECKC, in conjunction with the American Kennel Club (AKC), is not only to promote purebred dogs, but also to provide information and leadership to the entirety of the dog community.

“Every breed of dog has a standard that is set by their parent club of the United States, so we belong to the French Bulldog Club of America and our breed standard says they can't be certain colors, those are considered fad colors and are not accepted; they can't weigh over 28 pounds, that's a disqualification,” explained McClelland. “When you get into different dogs, it's about their gait, it's about the way their head is shaped, it's about the way their height is, so every dog has its own standard, and we want to know at a confirmation show which dog looks the best according to the breed standards.”

The annual dog show in Great Falls draws in people from all over Montana and even other states to show their dogs, sometimes very rare breeds, such as the Tibetan Spaniel.

“Tibetan Spaniel breed was recognized by AKC in 1982 when they were brought to the United States,” said a participant at the dog show. “They are a very cat-like breed, so you have to have a cat post to have one of these guys, because they like to be perched up high.”

Many of the participants have been showing their purebred dogs for several years, working towards grand champion status for their breed’s category.

“Her mother is a grand champion, working on her bronze,” said Melissa Lose, about her Tibetan Spaniels.

For information on the Electric City Kennel Club or the Flathead Kennel Club, visit their website.