Tyne and Wear has a new star athlete on its hands - in the form
of a three year old Pug called Niko.
Niko, owned by Karen White of South Shields, secured himself an
early Christmas present recently as he jumped, ran and weaved his
way to victory to qualify for a Kennel Club Bronze Agility Warrant,
making him only the second Pug ever to have achieved this
Agility Warrant scheme
The Agility Warrant scheme rewards consistency in agility dogs -
dogs that take part in the UK's fastest-growing dog sport, in which
dogs compete against the clock to complete an obstacle course of
jumps, tunnels, and A-frames to gain points. The sport keeps the
dogs fit and healthy and for a Pug like Niko, is a fast and fun way
of getting his recommended 30 minutes of daily exercise.
Niko's hard work and enthusiasm has paid off after he gained
enough points to qualify for the bronze award at the Hare and
Hounds Christmas show at Richmond Equestrian Centre, North
Yorkshire at the end of November.
Proud owner Karen, who also shows Niko at pedigree dog shows,
said: "Niko absolutely loves the fast and furious nature of
agility, whether it's at a competition or just training, and he
gets so excited he squeals before going over the first jump.
"He has already qualified for and competed at Crufts through
showing and our ambition is to qualify though an agility class as
well. Agility is a fun way to keep us both fit and healthy and
Niko's enthusiasm definitely keeps the spectators entertained!"
Kennel Club Assured Breeder
Niko's breeder, Gwen Oake of Bishop Auckland, County Durham, a
Kennel Club Assured Breeder, puts his love for agility down to the
good breeding practices that ensure he is healthy and has bundles
of energy for his favourite activity. She said: "By adhering to
responsible breeding practices like those set out by the Assured
Breeder Scheme, we ensure that all of our dogs - Niko included -
are fit for function and can lead full, healthy and happy
"A responsibly bred Pug can do so much more than the common
misconceptions of the breed lead people to think."
Whilst Border Collies are generally the most common breed seen in
agility, Niko plans to continue giving them a run for their money
as he works his way towards a silver and gold award. To find out
more about the good breeding practices that help create healthy,
happy dogs like Niko, please visit