10 dogs have qualified for the world’s greatest dog show, Crufts, after competing in the southern semi-finals of the Kennel Club Good Citizen Dog Scheme Special Pre-Beginner obedience stakes at London’s biggest dog event, Eukanuba Discover Dogs at ExCeL London over the weekend (22nd and 23rd October).
In all, 39 dogs which had qualified at open and championship shows throughout the year competed in the semi-finals. Organisers were delighted to see a number of breeds take part which are not commonly associated with obedience, such as the French Bulldog, Chihuahua and Samoyed, proving that these stakes classes are ideal for all dogs.
To compete in these classes, dogs must have obtained their Kennel Club Good Citizen Dog Scheme Bronze Award as a minimum, and their handler must not have won a first prize in a pre-beginners class, nor gained a third prize or higher in any other standard obedience class (introductory class excepted). Qualifying heats were held at 31 shows throughout the UK.
The stakes classes involve testing the dog and handler on six elements – play/motivation; heel on lead; physical examination of the dog; recall with finish; control at gate exercise; and stay for one minute with handler in sight.
Placings for the semi-final on Saturday 22nd were:
1st – Ossies Jumping Jax, Working Sheepdog, owned by Wendy Osborne.
2nd – Soaring Fred, crossbreed, Paul Watts.
3rd – Casam Leonora, Flat Coated Retriever, Ruth Stevens.
4th – Buddywell Better Be Good, Cocker Spaniel, Angela Phillips.
5th – Quinestille Popsicle, crossbreed, Lynne Tovey.
Placings for the semi-final on Sunday 23rd were:
1st – Risingtides Lady Opal, Labrador Retriever, owned by Allison Burrows.
2nd – Risepark Mark’s Boy Alfie, Miniature Schnauzer, Jacky Stocker.
3rd – Quincebois Salleron, Hovawart, Tanja Connor.
4th – Dukeson Hoosier Adagio, Shetland Sheepdog, Maryliese Happel.
5th – Tagtagstic Myrtle, Labrador Retriever, Jill Thorpe.
Caroline Kisko, Kennel Club Secretary, said: “It was a wonderful achievement for all 39 qualifiers to reach the semi-finals at Eukanuba Discover Dogs where they were able to show off their talents. Now we have our ten southern finalists and we wish them all the best of luck for the final at Crufts next year.”
The northern semi-finals take place in Penicuik, Scotland on Sunday 30th October, where a further ten finalists will be chosen, and the final will be held at Crufts on Saturday 11th March 2017.