Top Dogs Compete at American Kennel Club Nationals

Soka the five-year-old german shepherd has been training for this day since she was 8-weeks-old.

"This is the first time we've come to nationals. We've been running akc for about 3 years with her and she's been working so hard, and we're so excited she got qualified," says Soka's owner Beth Poppre.

Qualifying for Nationals is no easy task. 900 pups from around the planet made it past preliminary obstacle course competitions to get to this point. Now, the best of the best will go paw to paw for the crown.

"This is the crème de la crème. They've worked all year to get to this event. They had to qualify to be here. They've come from all over the united states. We've got dogs from even alaska and hawaii who are here looking to be the national champions," says American Kennel Club Director of Agility Carrie DeYoung.

Although any breed can compete in the American Kennel Club nationals, there's a lot that separates the top dogs from the rest of the pack.

"You know it depends on the relationship you have with your dog and how much work you put into it," says Ryan Haynes.

"You have to practice all the time and it's a lot of money, but I think it's well worth it," says Karen Kaito.

Beth hopes the time she put in with Soka will be good enough to get to the finals, but regardless, she's happy her dog got the chance to compete at this level.

"It was a hard course, but it was good. I'm so proud of everything she did," says Poppre.

The championships take place on Sunday at 3pm.


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