Excitement reached fever pitch as about 30 furry athletes lined up for the terrier race at the Otago Taieri A&P Show on Saturday.
The thrill of the chase was in the air as yapping fox terriers and Jack Russells strained against the grip of their owners, raring to set off in pursuit of the lure.
Roars of “go, go, go” quickly turned to laughter as the race got under way, about half of the dogs losing interest after a few seconds and turning back to find their owners, play with other dogs, or roll on the grass.
A few hardy little runners stuck with the pursuit though, 3-year-old fox terrier Jazz beating all the opposition to win first place.
Proud owner Johanna O’Neill, of Dunedin, said Jazz was a seasoned competitor, having competed in the terrier race twice before and placed second both times.
“She knows what to do, and she was determined to catch that lure.”
The terrier race has been run for the past four years.
Race co-organiser Mike Dougherty, of Edinburgh Realty, said it was a great attraction for the public at the show.
Typically, only about half the canine competitors stuck with the race to the end, which provided a lot of amusement.
“It’s a great way to end the day.”
Saturday’s heat meant shady spots were in demand and ice creams popular.
Otago Taieri A&P Society president Wayne Smaill estimated up to 10,000 people made the pilgrimage to the Mosgiel showgrounds for the event.
The show featured a busy programme of events, including equestrian competitions, the Otago Axemen’s competitions and Big Rig truck show.