All creatures great and small: Chicago Pet Show opens Oct. 13 in Libertyville

 
Daily Herald staff report
Updated 10/10/2018 6:33 AM
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  • Murphy, an English bulldog, greets visitors at Adopt-A-Bulldog during a previous Chicago Pet Show at the Libertyville Sports Complex. The event features pet services, pet products, entertainment, magic acts, and a chance to adopt pets from local rescue groups and shelters.

    Murphy, an English bulldog, greets visitors at Adopt-A-Bulldog during a previous Chicago Pet Show at the Libertyville Sports Complex. The event features pet services, pet products, entertainment, magic acts, and a chance to adopt pets from local rescue groups and shelters. Daily Herald File Photo

  • Joe Vavra, 11, of St. Charles takes a selfie with a Mexican milk snake at a previous Chicago Pet Show.

    Joe Vavra, 11, of St. Charles takes a selfie with a Mexican milk snake at a previous Chicago Pet Show. Daily Herald File Photo

  • Animal lovers can check out a variety of creatures -- four-legged, winged and otherwise -- at the Chicago Pet Show in Libertyville Oct. 13-14.

      Animal lovers can check out a variety of creatures -- four-legged, winged and otherwise -- at the Chicago Pet Show in Libertyville Oct. 13-14. John Starks | Staff Photographer, 2014

Combining 30 years experience organizing more than 200 consumer event shows with a love of pets, Peggy Ruh of Yorkville and her staff are bringing the annual Chicago Pet Show to the Libertyville Sports Complex this weekend.

Show hours are 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Saturday, Oct. 13, and Sunday, Oct. 14. Admission is $7 for adults and free for those younger than 18 with a parent and seniors 65 and older.

Coupons for $1 off admission are available from local rescues. The complex is at 1950 N. Route 45, Libertyville, and parking is free.

Visitors are asked to leave their own pets at home for safety. Rescues at the event will be checked in at the front desk.

For the love of pets

Loving pets is certainly an American trait. According to Ruh, more than 60 percent of all households have pets, equating to 72 million homes. Dogs lead the pack in 45 million homes, with cats coming in second at 38 million.

The Chicago Pet Show management shares this affection -- particularly Ruh, parent of two Cavalier rescues, Harper and Tinker; a longhaired Chihuahua, Lola; and a Lhasa apso named Sammy.

The staff's personal interests expanded professionally when they developed a public expo to help all those in search of a pet find one -- as well as all products and services they may need for pet care.

Forever homes

According to Ruh, of all pets that are brought into homes, only 38 percent are kept long-term.

"Our goal in hosting the Chicago Pet Show is to help potential forever home parents to learn about different breed types and to assist in finding the perfect family fit, learn about doggy day cares, nutrition, holistic foods and supplies, as well as dog waste cleanup services," she said.

There will be plenty of pets to meet from breed-specific rescue groups, as well as mixed-breed animals from shelters and humane societies. Rescues include: Greater Chicago Cavalier Rescue (Cavalier King Charles); Erin's Farm; Echo Dogs White Shepard Rescue; Adoptabull English Bulldogs; and Illinois Doberman Rescue Plus.

In the feline category will be St. Sophia's Feline Rescue and Open Doors Animal Rescue for kittens and cats of all ages. Ruh said a portion of the show's revenue will be donated to these organizations.

Potential pet parents stand a very good chance of finding exactly the pet their family would love, Ruh said -- even nontraditional pets. By that, she's referring to animals such as ferrets, birds, reptiles, lizards, snakes, sugar gliders, rabbits, hamsters and others.

"There's no limitations on what people might expect to see at the show -- just a limitation on where I might be in the hall," Ruh said. "I'm a dog lover."

Shows and seminars

Mike DiDomenico as Magic Mike will be performing his magic with the help of rescue pets on Saturday. Talks and presentations will be held inside the hall in the Speaker's Area covering animal nutrition, pet health care, training, obedience and the vexing dilemma of "puppy and kitten mills."

Jim Nesci of Cold Blooded Creatures will entertain attendees on Sunday with a little help from Bubba the alligator and other exotic creatures.

There will be seminars and demos throughout the weekend dealing with massage, acupuncture, training, and more. Demonstrations will include some of the techniques on how to build up a healthy and successful relationship with your pet and to help you build that family bond.

Retail vendors and boutique businesses will offer pet food, treats and gear, including clothing, beds, leads, collars and everything else a pet parent or pet may need.

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