The American Farm Bureau Federation seeks nominations for the 2021 Farm Dog of the Year contest. Micheal Clements shares how the contest recognizes farmers and ranchers’ companions while providing the public a look at agriculture.
Clements: The Farm Bureau Farm Dog of the Year contest by the American Farm Bureau Federation and Purina promotes the important role of dogs in agriculture. Terri Moore, AFBF Vice President of Communications, says this is the third year of the contest.
Moore: It’s really a fun way to highlight the important role of dogs on farms and ranches. The idea is to celebrate farm dogs that work alongside the farmers and ranchers. And the criteria are they should be helpful, playful, obedient and good companions. The grand-prize winner gets $5,000 and a years’ supply of dog food. And then, we’ll have up to four regional runners-up who each get $1,000.
Clements: The competition includes the People’s Choice Pup award, an online, social media version of the contest.
Moore: So, we take the top ten contestants in the Farm Dog competition and we profile them on our social media channels and give anyone and everyone the chance to vote. And the winner gets bragging rights, which are important, and 50 bucks. The interesting thing is, last year we had more than 100,000 votes. What a great way to connect the general public to the role of dogs on farms.
Clements: Partnering with Purina, the contest connects agriculture with consumers.
Moore: Less than two percent of the population now has a direct connection to agriculture. And we’ve never had higher interest in the food supply and where food comes from thanks to COVID. And for those who love animals, they come upon this, they see both how farmers and ranchers love their pets, but get to learn a little bit about agriculture in the process.
Clements: The deadline for nominations is August 20. Submit nominations online at fb.org. Micheal Clements, Washington.