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Canines can compete for top farm dog of the year

dogVirginia farmers are invited to enter their four-legged farmhands in the American Farm Bureau Federation’s Farm Dog of the Year Contest.

“Virginia farmers will have a chance to recognize the work and loyalty of their working dogs that are a vital part of so many farm families,” noted Tony Banks, a commodity marketing specialist for Virginia Farm Bureau Federation.

The contest “celebrates farm dogs who work alongside their people to bring nutritious food to our tables and our pets’ bowls.” Sponsored by AFBF and Nestle Purina PetCare, the competition focuses on canine attributes like helpfulness, playfulness and obedience.

“Farm dogs offer companionship and make farmers’ work a little lighter and their recreation time more fun,” said AFBF President Zippy Duvall.

The grand prize winner will receive a year’s worth of Purina dry dog food and $5,000 in prize money for the farm family to help offset travel costs to the AFBF Annual Convention in New Orleans next January. The winner will be recognized during the convention. Four runners-up will each receive $1,000 in prize money.

To enter the competition, farm dog owners must be Farm Bureau members. A one-page written essay, still photos and a video clip must be submitted to nominate a dog. No purchase is necessary.

Submit applications by Oct. 12 at