Britain’s Rarest Breeds Head to Preston for the West Coast’s Largest Dog Show

  • One of the largest dog shows in the UK
  • More than 7,000 dogs will compete over three days
  • More than 200 breeds on show
  • The opportunity to see rare breeds including the Lancashire Heeler
  • Dogs competing for a spot at the world famous Crufts dog show, to be held next March in Birmingham
  • Many trade stands selling all things ‘doggy’
  • ‘Spectator dogs’ welcome

Britain’s rarest breeds will be among the more than 7,000 dogs which will be descending on Redwood Park in Inskip, near Preston from 24th - 26th June for the popular Blackpool Championship Dog Show – the largest event of its kind on the west coast and among the biggest in the UK.

The show will see more than 200 breeds and their owners from all over the British Isles and beyond compete in a bid to qualify for the world’s biggest dog show, Crufts, which will be held at the NEC in Birmingham next March. 

The pedigree dogs taking part will be judged on a number of factors in the ring, including temperament and that they are fit, healthy and happy dogs that are good examples of their breed, as they compete for the ultimate ‘Best in Show’ prize.

The show is one of the largest gatherings of dogs in the UK and will see rare native British and Irish breeds competing, such as the Lancashire Heeler originating from England (33 of this breed on show), the Cardigan Corgi from Wales (8), the Smooth Collie from Scotland (10), and the Irish Terrier from Ireland (7). 

These breeds are bred in such small numbers today that they are considered by the Kennel Club to be at risk of disappearing from the UK’s streets and parks. Alongside these breeds will be some of the more well-known ones such as the Golden Retriever (198 of this breed on show), Labrador Retriever (152), Cocker Spaniel (141), Irish Setter (140) and Whippet (140).

The show is perfect for families researching the right breed of dog for them, and visitors will be able to meet the dogs themselves as well as talk to experts in each breed about finding a good breeder, what to expect from the breed, and training and care requirements.

Steve Hall, secretary of the show, said: “Ours is the largest dog show on the west coast as well as one of the biggest in the UK and naturally we are very proud of that fact. Being so near to Blackpool, which during the summer is a huge playground for holidaymakers, the show brings thousands of dog lovers to the area each year and we are expecting this year’s show to be bigger and better than ever.

“The show is a huge celebration of man’s best friend and visitors will get to meet lots of wonderful dogs throughout the weekend, find out more about dog showing and the various activities they can get involved in with their own dog, and browse the many dog products on the trade stands.

“Anyone thinking about getting a pedigree dog can come along and research their favourite breeds, as well as some of the lesser known breeds they may not even have heard of, and take the opportunity to meet the dogs themselves, which is definitely a favourite with families.”

Competition classes are held across the seven pedigree dog groups. Friday 24th June will see the Terrier, Utility and Toy breeds competing, followed by the Gundog and Hound breeds on Saturday 25th and the Working and Pastoral breeds on Sunday 26th. Sunday also sees the climax of the competition – Best in Show – followed by Best Puppy in Show and Best Junior in Show. 

The show is one of 37 Group and General Championship Dog Shows licensed by the Kennel Club throughout the year, which enable dogs to qualify for next year’s Crufts.

Entry to the show is free and car parking costs £10. The public can bring ‘spectator dogs’ with them to the show, for a fee of £5, but will have to sign a declaration that their dog is free from any illness and ensure their dog is under control at all times. Spectator dogs may not compete at the show.

To find out more, visit

More information on dog showing, and any other activity dog owners can get involved in with their dogs, can be found at the Kennel Club website.