THIS was the 11th edition of the Golden Groomer in Liege, Belgium on the 19th & 20th of July 2014, and is one of the only grooming competitions held during an international dog show.
There was a jury of highly talented international groomers and breed specialists (Mrs Kitty Dekeersgieter, Mrs Caroline Lezier, Mrs Carol Hanson, Mr Luis Martin del Rio, Mr Jean Vion, Mr Sébastien Patient).
Almost a heart attack. That was what happened to the President when he informed everyone how many entries came in in a couple of days prior to closing date. His Secretary told him that they hadn’t even reached 1,000 entries close to entries closing day, but in those last few days the number climbed to 2,094, and that is 37 entries more than last year.
As long as I can remember the show in Gent has always been a one day show, unique in its concept, interesting for the visitor who can see all the breeds on one day, but not that interesting for everyone.
There is without a doubt more advantages than disadvantages to spread a show over two days. Gent was also a two yearly show. I wonder if that will change in the near future. It would be nice, as Gent is popular and has enough potential to do it. This was Gent’s 45th show and probably the start of a new era. Unfortunately, the Honorary President, Mr Pierre Verborgh, could not enjoy the results of the changes he agreed upon as he died less than three weeks before the show.
As every show, it all started small. In 1964 Mr José Misselyn organised the first edition in Menen, a small town near Kortrijk. In 1970 I entered my Great Dane for this show and I remember that it took place in the first Expo Halls of Kortrijk. Twenty-five years ago I started to work as a reporter for the national magazine in Belgium, WOEF, the Eurodogshow was my first show, and since then I have been a yearly visitor and have seen it grow larger, bigger and more professional.
While last year the Brussels Dog Show was surfing on high waves, this year they were forced to replace the regular date that is normally mid-December, to the summer, because the Heizel Palaces were not available.