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Celebrating Responsible Pet Care
September ushers in the AKC's Responsible Dog Ownership Day nationwide.
JoAnna and her Sheltie, Nemo, participate in an agility demonstration at the Responsible Dog Ownership Day in New York City.

September means it’s time for one of my favorite events, the American Kennel Club’s annual Responsible Dog Ownership Day. The festivities celebrate all facets of canine education from dog sports to health care. Rescue groups, obedience training clubs, therapy organizations, boutique stores and veterinarians all come together in the name of promoting proper pet care.  

At past events I’ve found myself doing everything from watching Frisbee dogs to playing trivia games to learning how drug-sniffing canines are trained. Activities vary by the host club, but the Responsible Dog Ownership Days always feature the Canine Good Citizen test, AKC’s benchmark of good doggy etiquette. Both of my Shelties earned their certification at the event in past years. 

The AKC normally hosts two separate events in close proximity to their offices in New York and North Carolina, in addition to supporting hundreds of clubs nationwide in holding their own Responsible Dog Ownership Days. 

This year the AKC will have their usual Raleigh, N.C., event at the North Carolina State Fairgrounds on Saturday, September 26. The event will feature “meet the breed” booths, low cost microchipping, Canine Good Citizen testing, and agility, obedience and rally demonstrations.

The New York event is being replaced by Meet the Breeds on October 17-18 at the Javits Convention Center, but Responsible Dog Ownership Day will return to the area in 2010. 

Visit the AKC website to find a Responsible Dog Ownership Day event near you.


JoAnna Lou is a New York City-based researcher, writer and agility enthusiast.

Photo by Robert Young/AKC Web Photographer.

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