For two minutes, one-and-a-half-year-old Rio sat on the floor, eyes only for his handler.

The Golden Retriever from Bangalore stood out among the other dogs in the obedience test at the All Breeds Championship Dog Show held at YMCA grounds in Nandanam on Saturday.

Rio was one of 25 participants that included Rottweilers, Dobermans and Labradors, on day one of the two-day show.

All about obedience

“Dogs are aggressive by nature but they are also obedient. Such shows exhibit the closeness of the handlers with their pets by demonstrating the obedience of the latter,” said K.G. Rajanikanth, secretary, The Madras Canine Club.

His statement was validated by Rio and his handler, G. Venketash, a class VIII student from Bangalore, who was the youngest handler at the competition.

This was Venketash’s first visit to Chennai. He came to the show with his uncle and was thrilled at all the applause Rio garnered.

“Like other children, I too am fond of pets, especially dogs. Except during my school hours, Rio and I are always together,” he said.

Dog trainers at the competition said, on an average, a dog should be at least eight months old to participate in such shows and competitions because puppies get unnerved when they are dropped in the middle of a pack at such shows.

However, any breed, including native varieties, can participate in the obedience trials. The level of obedience, according to trainers, depends on the bond between the animal and its handler.

There were some interesting moments at the show when some dogs ran away with the objects they were meant to retrieve for their handlers, as part of obedience tests. Some other dogs began to play with the object until it was forcefully taken away by their handlers.

More In: Chennai | News