So, I start packing up to go.  I really can’t get out of there fast enough at this point.  I want to toss my ribbon and prize in the nearest trash can, but I know that is bad sportsmanship. 

Earlier in the week I had made arrangements with a very generous person to pick up a loaner pup from her for my current video training project.  Since I was already halfway between us she agreed to drive up, meet me, and drop off the pup.  As I’m packing my van she shows up and we talk, play with pups, and take some pics.  It took about 20 minutes.  I was parked right outside the door to the building and noticed that we were being observed (and I think even photographed) the entire time. 

Those of you familiar with AKC events probably realize what’s going to happen next.  Dumb me, it didn’t even occur to me that there was a problem. 

As I turned to put the pup in my car I was accosted by several club members.  The one that asked me if I was lying about my title earlier screeched at me “do you know how many rules you just broke?!”  My honest response was “what?”  I still didn’t get it.  She said “you can’t have puppies on show grounds” and another person chimed in “it’s in the premium”.  She continued “and you cannot buy and sell puppies on a show site”.  I immediately realized they were right.  It was truly an honest, ignorant mistake.  And I knew that denying we were buying the pup, even though 100% true, would never be believed.  Honestly though, if I thought we were doing something wrong I certainly wouldn’t have done it right in front of everyone :-}! 

So I said “I apologize, we’re leaving”.  But I wondered why they watched and waited so long before saying something.  If they came over right away and said something we would have gone off-site immediately and exchanged the pup there.  Looking back on it I think they were already pissed at me for wanting my ribbon and now found a way to gain evidence of my wrongdoing.  I expect they will file some sort of charges with the AKC. 

Anyone that goes to AKC shows knows the “no puppy” rule, myself included.  Granted, it’s a rule that is rarely enforced.  Or should I say selectively enforced.  Puppies are everywhere at some shows.  But it is a rule and I did break it, totally unintentionally this time!  I feel really bad that the breeder was pulled into this.  She looked quite appalled by the level of anger and venom directed at us.  It was so ugly and unpleasant and seemed quite vindictive when a simple sentence would have resolved things immediately.  I know our club would have handled things quickly and quietly. 

And people wonder why AKC obedience events are not as popular as they used to be.  Huh, I can’t imagine!

So there you have it…..