BOONE LIFE: Small dog, big wins at Columbia Kennel Club dog show

Carly, a Pembroke Welsh Corgi, travels with her owner and handler to more than 100 dog shows a year
Monday, March 17, 2008 | 6:37 a.m. CDT; updated 9:33 p.m. CST, Monday, February 9, 2009
Carly, a Pembroke Welsh Corgi, obediently awaits a treat from owner and handler Bill Shelton after showing at the Columbia Kennel Dog Show on March 8. The pair traveled from Los Angeles for the event. "Just like a hobbyist spends their time and money on a boat, we put our resources into Carly," Bill Shelton said.

Carly likes to be the center of attention. When her owner is approached on March 9 in a vacant judging ring at the Columbia Kennel Club’s American Kennel Club Conformation and Obedience event at the Boone County Fairgrounds, it is clear that Carly, a Pembroke Welsh corgi, is miffed that this stranger is not there to be her sole audience and makes her protest heard. Carly, also known as Ch. Coventry Vanity Fair, is a champion. “She is the top-winning Welsh corgi in America right now,” says her owner and handler Bill Shelton. Shelton and Carly travel from their home in Pomona, Calif., to more than 100 dog shows a year.

“We are gone almost every weekend to shows or events,” Shelton said. “Just like a hobbyist spends their time and money on a boat, we put our resources into Carly.” It takes a distinct personality to be a successful show dog, and though Carly is vocal about being left out at first, she quickly relaxes near the edge of a show table where she has been placed by Shelton to save her white and caramel fur from the compacted dirt floor. She rests her head on her paw, one eye droops shut, and her ears twitch in response to the changing inflections of Shelton’s voice as he elaborates on Carly’s accomplishments. Later that day, Carly continued a winning streak begun on Saturday with Best of Breed and first in the Herding Group by capturing Best in Show.

Dogs from around Missouri and around the country gathered at the Boone County Fairgrounds on March 8 and 9 for the Columbia Kennel Club's dog show — Boone Life photographers met Carly, the Pembroke Welsh Corgi who took Best in Show.

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