Farm Progress

Prairie Farmer’s Favorite Farm Dog Contest is open and taking nominations now! You know your farm dog is the best — show us why.

Holly Spangler, Senior Editor, Prairie Farmer

February 27, 2017

3 Min Read
FARM DOG: Is your dog worthy of Prairie Farmer’s Favorite Farm Dog award? We bet they are!

Nearly every farm has a faithful canine sidekick, and we’d love to meet yours! Prairie Farmer’s Favorite Farm Dog Contest is now open for 2017. And if we’ve learned one thing in our years of holding this contest, it’s that Illinois farmers have some pretty incredible dogs. 

What about you? Is your farm dog tops? We’re willing to bet they are. Make sure your dog gets his or her day by nominating them for our 2017 Favorite Farm Dog Contest. To enter your dog, send in your favorite photo and an essay sharing your dog’s best stories and exactly why he or she should be our 2017 Favorite Farm Dog. Please limit essays to 300 words.

In your essay, please include your dog’s name, breed, age, and what makes him or her the perfect canine candidate. Include your name, address and phone number, plus the photographer’s name. Entries are due March 27, and you can use the entry form below.

Prizes for you
The winner of our Favorite Farm Dog Contest will receive a complete photo shoot of their dog on the farm, on the job, and with and without family members, plus a 16-by-20-inch Modern Metals wall art featuring their favorite farm dog photo, complete with winning credentials. In addition, the first-place farm dog's owner will receive $100; second place receives $75, and third place receives $50.

And don’t forget the real prize: neighborhood glory for your four-legged friend.

Last year, Max, a 4-year-old border collie-terrier mix from Elizabeth, won first prize. According to Max’s owners, Sierra Downing and Randy Haas, “Max is the definition of farm dog, runs free all day, and is always the first to load himself in the truck, tractor, four-wheeler, kayak, or whatever you may be taking that day.”

And like a lot of farm dogs, Max is pretty much one of the family. “We know many people think of their pets as people, but we're pretty sure Max is one-third dog, one-third cat and one-third human," Downing says. "Some people say you only get one good dog in your life, and for us that is Max.”

Be sure to get those nominations polished and sent our way by March 27. Send digital entries using the form below. Entrants must be 14 years of age or older; all photos become property of Prairie Farmer and will not be returned.


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About the Author(s)

Holly Spangler

Senior Editor, Prairie Farmer, Farm Progress

Holly Spangler has covered Illinois agriculture for more than two decades, bringing meaningful production agriculture experience to the magazine’s coverage. She currently serves as editor of Prairie Farmer magazine and Executive Editor for Farm Progress, managing editorial staff at six magazines throughout the eastern Corn Belt. She began her career with Prairie Farmer just before graduating from the University of Illinois in agricultural communications.

An award-winning writer and photographer, Holly is past president of the American Agricultural Editors Association. In 2015, she became only the 10th U.S. agricultural journalist to earn the Writer of Merit designation and is a five-time winner of the top writing award for editorial opinion in U.S. agriculture. She was named an AAEA Master Writer in 2005. In 2011, Holly was one of 10 recipients worldwide to receive the IFAJ-Alltech Young Leaders in Ag Journalism award. She currently serves on the Illinois Fairgrounds Foundation, the U of I Agricultural Communications Advisory committee, and is an advisory board member for the U of I College of ACES Research Station at Monmouth. Her work in agricultural media has been recognized by the Illinois Soybean Association, Illinois Corn, Illinois Council on Agricultural Education and MidAmerica Croplife Association.

Holly and her husband, John, farm in western Illinois where they raise corn, soybeans and beef cattle on 2,500 acres. Their operation includes 125 head of commercial cows in a cow/calf operation. The family farm includes John’s parents and their three children.

Holly frequently speaks to a variety of groups and organizations, sharing the heart, soul and science of agriculture. She and her husband are active in state and local farm organizations. They serve with their local 4-H and FFA programs, their school district, and are active in their church's youth and music ministries.

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