For fans of Dalmatians and Siberian huskies, the Carroll County Ag Center is the place to be this weekend as clubs devoted to the breeds present American Kennel Club-sanctioned matches for their dogs.
The Central Maryland Dalmatian Club Inc. opens the activities tomorrow with conformation and obedience classes from 10 a.m. to about 3 p.m.
"Conformation is the breeding standards -- shape of the head, markings, that sort of thing," said Julia Amoss, match chairman. "We also have a sweepstakes, which is basically a conformation, but we take the entry money and divide it up so everybody gets something."
Classes for males and females include puppies 6 to 9 months old and 9 to 12 months old, dogs 12 to 18 months, novice dogs, bred-by-exhibitor dogs, American-bred dogs and dogs that have already won a show.
Ribbons and trophies will be awarded in addition to the sweepstakes money. Entries are closed for this match.
Starting at 9 a.m. Sunday, the Chesapeake Siberian Husky Club Inc. presents a specialty match of puppies and adults.
Also, from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m., an all-breed eye and tattoo clinic will be offered.
"Dr. Lionel Rubin will do the eye clinic to make sure the eye is free of genetic defects," said Lauri Reuck, match chairwoman.
"Huskies can get juvenile cataracts and other deformities, and if they're found to be genetic, then the dog should not be bred," she said. Pet Tattooing by Doug will be on hand to do microchip identification or tattoos according to National Dog Registry guidelines to provide permanent dog identification.
Both clinics require appointments.
"For the Siberian husky-only match, we'll also be offering rabies test, fecal test and heartworm test and medication at cost," Ms. Reuck said.
Entries will be accepted for the husky match from 9 a.m. until the judging at 10 a.m. Information on the club will be available for those who own a husky or are interested in buying a husky.
Both the Dalmatian and husky events are matches, not shows.
"A match is a practice for a show," Ms. Reuck said. "The show is when the dog goes for points for obedience and breed."
A club must have at least two matches before it is allowed to have a show, Ms. Amoss said.
Visitors to both events will be admitted free, and refreshments will be available throughout both days.
The Ag Center is on Smith Avenue near the Farm Museum in Westminster.