Rubel rules in dog showmanship

Regan Rubel, a sophomore at Madison-Plains High School, with her golden retriever, Cheney, won dog Showman of Showmen and other canine honors Friday at the Madison County Fair.

Regan Rubel confidently took her golden retriever, Cheney, through the show ring in the dog show Friday at the Madison County Fair. She trotted around the ring with Cheney easily keeping pace. In fact, the pair trotted so quickly, they nearly lapped the field.

That confidence apparently impressed the judge as Rubel and Cheney were awarded Showman of Showmen for 2015.

The Madison-Plains High School sophomore keeps busy with band, being dog ambassador at the fair and playing varsity sports of golf and track. But each day she takes time to work with Cheney, 7.

She said it’s the daily attention to the obedience and showing details, which have paid off this year in the show arena. She also placed first in You and Your Dog, and Obedience Novice A.

While they do work together, Regan and Cheney have those special tender moments. Dogs have an intuitive nature by which they know when their master needs an emotional lift.

“He feels my feelings when I’m down,” Rubel said. “He picks me up by licking my face.”

Rubel entered 4-H at an early age and has stayed involved seven years.

“I love 4-H,” she said. “It teaches you hard work, completion, time management. It’s a great way to teach younger kids life lessons and to learn to speak up. I’m so much better with my social skills.”

Rubel said because of her dyslexia, it may take her longer to complete a task. But she works hard.

“If I spend time on it, I might as well do it right, right?” she asked.

The daughter of Tereca and Bryan Rubel of London, Regan is much more confident in her ability to speak to people.

“Two years ago, I would have been terrified to have this conversation,” she said.

Dean Shipley can be reached at 740-852-1616, ext. 1617, on Facebook at Dean Shipley or via Twitter @DeanAShipley.