Young Abbie and Her Dog Bess from Cumbria Crowned YKC Obedience Stakes Winners at Crufts

A dog from Carlisle, Cumbria has triumphed at Crufts by winning the Kennel Club Good Citizen Dog Scheme Special Pre-Beginner Obedience Stakes Final for Young Kennel Club (YKC) Members Stakes Competition.

Bess, a three-year-old Working Sheepdog, and her owner, fourteen-year-old Abbie Nunn beat ten other talented dogs to be crowned the winner of the 2017 Stakes Competition at the world’s greatest dog show. This is the second time the YKC competition has been added to the Good Citizen Dog Scheme (GCDS) ring at Crufts.

The competition was created in 2005 to encourage prospective exhibitors who have passed their GCDS bronze award to take part in obedience competitions. The exercises included in the test are a combination of the current GCDS exercises and the pre-beginner obedience test. Building on the basic training skills learnt through the Good Citizen Dog Scheme, these new stakes help to bridge the gap between basic training and entering a competition, especially for junior members.

Dogs entered in the final qualified at heats held in 2016, by being chosen as the best YKC member in the heat. Heats were held locations throughout the UK and competition was fierce.

Bess’ owner, Abbie, who has been a Young Kennel Club member for two years, said: “I’m very happy with the win, a lot of work has gone into this. Every Wednesday we train and we add about 15 minutes a day to train up to where we are now.

“Bess is such a good house dog. She loves her agility and she puts 110% into everything she does. Words can’t describe it. I’m just so happy with her.”

Caroline Kisko, Kennel Club Secretary said: “Very well done to Abbie and Bess for winning YKC Good Citizen Dog Special Pre-Beginner Obedience Stakes. It is an excellent achievement for a young handler to win and we look forward to seeing more of them at Crufts for many years to come.”

If you would like to find out more about the Young Kennel Club and how to join please contact the Young Kennel Club team by email or by visiting the YKC website.

Crufts took place from 9th-12th March 2017 at the NEC, Birmingham. For more information, visit the Crufts website. The results for Crufts 2017 can be found online at View free downloadable images from Crufts 2017.