‘Dog Days’ Show benefits Humane Society of Jackson County


Dealing with a variety of health issues over the years, Weslynn Davis considers herself fortunate to be alive today.

She gives a lot of credit to having a four-legged friend by her side.

She said she has real bad panic attacks and post-traumatic stress disorder, and if they get bad enough, she could have a seizure. She also has to watch her blood sugar levels.

Davis has trained all three of the service dogs she has had to help her with these issues. That includes her current dog, Sweetie Pie.

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“I couldn’t be in public without her,” Davis said. “I could not be out around people. I would be a recluse in my apartment. I would not leave, if not be dead, because I just can’t survive without her. There’s just no way. She goes with me everywhere I go. Very rarely do I leave her behind.”

On Saturday morning, Davis and 3-year-old Sweetie Pie headed to the Keach Parking Lot at Fourth and Walnut streets in downtown Seymour for the 15th annual Dog Days Dog Show.

She entered Sweetie Pie into the most unique and best dressed categories. She said her dog is unique because it’s a Jack Russell long-haired dachshund mix, and Davis made a dress for her to wear that she made and a friend embroidered.

While they didn’t take home any first-place awards, Davis said she had a good time.

“I recently had surgery, so I didn’t know how I would handle it, but I’m doing OK,” she said. “I think it’s neat to see how other dogs react around other dogs and get people to get out here. Dog people don’t usually get out around a lot of people, and this gets us out around people. It’s neat to get to see the different kinds and pet them and meet the owners.”

Seymour Main Street started the Dog Days Dog Show 15 years ago, but the Humane Society of Jackson County took over in 2012.

For $3, people could enter their dog into two categories. Awards were presented in 11 categories — most hair, longest tail, shortest natural tail, oldest dog, best dressed, most unique, longest ears, dog most resembling owner, precious puppy, best trick and best rescue story. Dogs also could compete in a hot dog hunt.

All 28 dogs entered into the show received a treat bag from Paws-N-Claws Pet Resort, and door prizes were handed out. Paws-N-Claws also had a groomer on site doing nail trimming for a cost.

Proceeds will be designated for the Humane Society’s medical fund to help with medical costs of animals that need surgery or other treatment.

Davis said she took her dog to the show for the first time after reading about it in the newspaper.

She has had Sweetie Pie since the dog was 8 weeks old. Sweetie Pie had been left at a home without food and water and was very thin.

Since she had experience training two other dogs, she decided to train Sweetie Pie to be a service dog.

“When I got her, I had a choice between her and her sister,” Davis said. “Her sister was a full-blooded Jack Russell, and her sister made me feel real nervous at 7 weeks. (Sweetie Pie) calmed me straight down, so from that point on, she was real easy to train.”

If anyone has certain health issues, Davis encourages them to train their dog.

“I like to tell people, ‘You don’t have to spend this big money for these animals. Train your own,'” she said. “People just don’t understand all you have to have is a letter from your doctor stating the name of the dog, why they need it and it has to be a certified doctor or counselor.”

That allows Davis to take Sweetie Pie with her in public places, such as grocery stores and restaurants.

“Every day, she helps me because like right now, I’m surprised she’s not licking my arm because I’m getting real nervous with all of these people,” Davis said. “She usually will keep me settled real well.”

In 2008, when she had a different service dog, Davis was able to hit her lifeline when she collapsed in her apartment from a stroke. The dog was able to get the door unlocked for emergency personnel.

“When the ambulance got there, I wasn’t breathing. My daughter got there a few minutes later,” Davis said. “Five minutes more, I wouldn’t have had any hope. When they got me awake from the stroke, they couldn’t believe I was still alive.”

She said Sweetie Pie also can help other people.

“I’ve noticed with her, when someone would come up and talk to me that’s really upset or nervous, she will calm them down,” Davis said.

Competing in a different category Saturday was Fred Hubbard of Seymour and 2½-year-old Button, who is part Boston terrier and part Jack Russell terrier.

In the best trick category, Hubbard held a dog treat for Button to grab while standing on her hind legs.

“It’s not something we really do a lot, but she does it, and it’s kind of cool,” Hubbard said. “I think she is a very smart dog, and she can do a lot of fetching and running like that. And she loves to jump. She can jump really high.”

Hubbard said it was good to support the Humane Society and do something with his dog. A couple of weeks ago, they participated in the Summer Dog Splash at Shields Park Pool, giving dogs and their owners a chance to enjoy some time in the water.

“That was great,” he said. “I think the owners had more fun than the dogs did.”

One of the 11 winners at the dog show was Landon Rivera, 9, of Seymour and his 5-year-old long-haired dachshund-Pomeranian mix, Simba.

Both of them wore a Seymour soccer jersey with No. 28.

“That’s my uniform from last year,” Landon said of the dog’s jersey.

Landon’s mother, Monica Rivera, said they made a last-minute decision to attend the dog show.

“I was going through his closet and saw his old uniform, and I was like, ‘That would fit Simba,'” she said.

Landon said he normally doesn’t dress up his dog, but this was a special occasion.

Monica said they had a good time at the show.

“I think it’s good to do that in the community,” she said. “You get people outside, especially older people. They get to go out and do something. It’s neat. I think dogs kind of make people happy. I really do. I’m a dog trainer, so I’m all about dogs.”

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15th annual Dog Days Dog Show results

Category;Dog name;Dog type;Owner

Most hair;Heidi;Samoyed;Sue Donaldson

Longest tail;Cooper;Golden retriever;Darcy Hubbard

Shortest natural tail;Calvin;Australian shepherd;Jeremy Daulton

Oldest dog;Betty;Beagle;Ellen Mirer

Best dressed;Joy;Shih tzu;Teresa Brown

Most unique;Maddux;Border collie;Courtney Nolting

Longest ears;Ellie;Cockapoo;Coby Moore

Most resembling owner;Simba;Dachshund/Pomeranian mix;Landon Rivera

Precious puppy;Heidi;Frenchton;Bob Volland

Best trick;Charlie;Toy poodle;Katie Deppen

Best rescue story;Cocoa;Chihuahua mix;Pegi Bricker

Hot dog hunt;Maddux;Border collie;Courtney Nolting


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