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1st Quarter 2010 Community Achievement Awards

(Friday, April 09, 2010)

American Kennel Club Honors The Bayou Kennel Club With a Community Achievement Award

The American Kennel Club® announced recently that the Bayou Kennel Club (BKC) of Monroe, Louisiana has been named a recipient of the AKC® Community Achievement Award for its contributions to its community after natural disasters. BKC received one of three awards for the first quarter of 2010– Bismarck Kennel Club of Bismarck, North Dakota and Tom and Barbara Bishop of the New Brunswick Kennel Club in Vienna, New Jersey also received recognition.

The AKC Community Achievement Awards support and recognize outstanding public education and legislation efforts of AKC-affiliated clubs, AKC-recognized federations and their members. The AKC selects award recipients who promote purebred dogs and responsible dog ownership within their communities or who have successfully introduced, monitored and responded to legislative issues affecting dog ownership.

In 2005, Hurricane Katrina struck the club’s area during the weekend of its annual shows. In response, BKC purchased equipment, food and water for the local shelter. Since Katrina, two other hurricanes have hit the club’s area on show weekends. Using their experiences from 2005, club members shut down the show and assisted their community in turning the civic center into a shelter for evacuated individuals and pets of all kinds. The club has also purchased a storage building, which they use to store equipment, including generators, dog crates, exercise pens, dog bowls, and other useful items in the event of a disaster should they need to set up another shelter at a moment’s notice.

In addition to Bayou Kennel Club’s disaster work, the club also assists with local animal rescue and supports the Ouachita Parish Sheriff’s department Canine Unit, donating more than $30,500 over a number of years.

"The Bayou Kennel Club has done a wonderful job taking care of the pets in their community during several disasters," said Sheila Goffe, AKC’s Director of Government Relations. "The selfless actions of the club members represent the best of AKC clubs and we’re pleased to honor them with the Community Achievement Award."

Nominations for the AKC Community Achievement Awards are accepted year-round. Up to three honorees are named each quarter. They receive a certificate of appreciation and a $1,000 check payable to the club or federation’s public education and canine legislation efforts. To nominate a club, visit here.


American Kennel Club Honors Tom and Barbara Bishop of the New Brunswick Kennel Club With a Community Achievement Award

The American Kennel Club® announced recently that Tom and Barbara Bishop of the New Brunswick Kennel Club (NBKC) in Vienna, New Jersey have been named recipients of the AKC® Community Achievement Award for their commitment to portraying a "Bully" breed in a positive light to the public. Tom and Barbara received one of three awards for the first quarter of 2010– Bayou Kennel Club of Monroe, Louisiana and Bismarck Kennel Club of Bismarck, North Dakota also received recognition.

The AKC Community Achievement Awards support and recognize outstanding public education and legislation efforts of AKC-affiliated clubs, AKC-recognized federations and their members. The AKC selects award recipients who promote purebred dogs and responsible dog ownership within their communities or who have successfully introduced, monitored and responded to legislative issues affecting dog ownership.

The Bishops own Bull Terrier "Rufus," the Best in Show winner at the 2006 Westminster Kennel Club Dog Show. Since his win, Rufus has become an ambassador for the breed and helps to educate the public about responsible dog ownership. Rufus visits a local nursing home weekly, and has made visits to the Ronald McDonald House and Walter Reid Army Medical Center. He is also involved in therapy programs at Maria Fareri Children’s Hospital in Valhalla, New York; a senior residence in Mystic, Connecticut; and is the star of "Reading with Rufus" at the Wanamassa Elementary School’s Library Program in Wanamassa, New Jersey.

"We thank the Bishops and Rufus for their dedication in spreading the AKC’s responsible dog ownership message," said Sheila Goffe, AKC’s Director of Government Relations. "With communities across the country banning certain breeds, the Bishops’ activities with Rufus exemplify the ideal that dogs should be judged by their deed, not breed."

Nominations for the AKC Community Achievement Awards are accepted year-round. Up to three honorees are named each quarter. They receive a certificate of appreciation and a $1,000 check payable to the club or federation’s public education and canine legislation efforts. To nominate a club, visit here.


American Kennel Club Honors The Bismarck Kennel Club With a Community Achievement Award

The American Kennel Club® announced recently that the Bismarck Kennel Club (BKC) of Bismarck, North Dakota has been named a recipient of the AKC® Community Achievement Award for educating the local legislators in its community. BKC received one of three awards for the first quarter of 2010– Bayou Kennel Club of Monroe, Louisiana and Tom and Barbara Bishop of the New Brunswick Kennel Club in Vienna, New Jersey also received recognition.

The AKC Community Achievement Awards support and recognize outstanding public education and legislation efforts of AKC-affiliated clubs, AKC-recognized federations and their members. The AKC selects award recipients who promote purebred dogs and responsible dog ownership within their communities or who have successfully introduced, monitored and responded to legislative issues affecting dog ownership.

Since its first show in 2007, Bismarck Kennel Club has actively promoted the club’s presence in its community. Most recently, BKC invited all legislators and legislative candidates in their service area to lunch at their show, and more than sixteen lawmakers and candidates comprising both parties attended. Show Chairman Bill Nieland and several other members took the opportunity to discuss dog-related issues with the group and hand out packets of information that included AKC position papers and copies of "The Economic Benefits of AKC Dog Shows." These public officials were also asked to present awards to winners at the show.

"The Bismarck Kennel Club has done a wonderful job establishing themselves with the legislators in their community as the go-to resource for animal-related issues, and we applaud them for their efforts," said Sheila Goffe, AKC’s Director of Government Relations. "Legislation affecting our rights as responsible dog owners and breeders continues to be introduced all over the country, so it’s important to take the time to educate lawmakers about these matters."

Nominations for the AKC Community Achievement Awards are accepted year-round. Up to three honorees are named each quarter. They receive a certificate of appreciation and a $1,000 check payable to the club or federation’s public education and canine legislation efforts. To nominate a club, visit here.