The Kennel Club, the organisation behind Crufts, is inviting dogs and owners to its ‘Have a Go’ training day and special show, hosted by Leeds City and District Canine Association, on Sunday 24 July at Harewood House Estate, Leeds.
Owners can find out what it’s like to compete in the show ring with their dog and have a chance to qualify for a special place at the world’s greatest dog show, Crufts.
The Kennel Club’s ‘Have a Go’ training days are designed for people of any age and any ability, with a pedigree dog, and are the ideal opportunity for owners to develop a new skill, hobby and social circle alongside their four-legged friend.
Complete beginners, with no prior experience or knowledge of dog showing, are welcome, with just interest and enthusiasm needed. All owners and their dogs can reap the rewards of the socialising experience, unite with other dog-lovers over shared interests and ambitions, and become part of a close-knit community.
For those who have ever watched the variety of dogs showing their best side at Crufts, and perhaps wondered how their own canine companion could ever be crowned ‘Best in Show’, The Kennel Club’s ‘Have a Go’ dog shows could be the first step. At the end of the training session, a competition will take place, with the winner qualifying for a place in a special competition at Crufts 2023.
Jack Waddington, 27 from Yorkshire, and his puppy Walt, were newcomers to the hobby of dog showing, but made it to Crufts this year, having previously only watched the show on TV. Crufts 2022 celebrated many newcomers trying their hand – or paw – at the hobby of dog showing, having had two years away due to Covid.
Jack shared: “Myself and my partner saw the Large Munsterlanders at Crufts a few years ago and were immediately taken by this majestic and versatile dog that we could envisage fitting well with our lifestyle. Some research, a house move and a long waiting list later, we welcomed Walt to our family in 2020.
“I knew absolutely nothing when it came to the hobby of dog showing, but I just gave it a go. Initially, Walt was a bit of a class clown, but I couldn’t be more grateful for the support and encouragement from the dog showing community and I found myself at the last Leeds championship show, gaining second place in Walt’s puppy class. Walt and I were so busy meeting other Munsterlanders at the show, we had not even realised we qualified for Crufts 2022! For a complete beginner and having previously only ever watched Crufts on TV, qualifying was incredibly exciting.
“We love Walt to pieces and will forever be grateful to him for unlocking such a fantastic community and enabling us to meet a lovely group of likeminded people.”
Booking a place at the Leeds ‘Have a Go’ show, taking place as part of the Leeds City and District Canine Association championship show, costs £14 for the day, including parking, and all participants will receive a beginners’ dog showing pack and training which covers:
- Getting ready for taking part
- Basic skills required for participating
- What to expect when participating
- What to do once you have participated
The Kennel Club’s ‘Have a Go’ dog shows are being held across different regions in the UK in 2022 at various all-breed championship dog shows.
Kathryn Mansfield, Kennel Club Secretary, commented: “The ‘Have a Go’ dog shows have always proved to be an energetic and fun-filled day for everyone involved. It’s wonderful to be part of and watching newcomers discovering and learning the skills of dog showing in a laidback yet educational environment is so inspiring. I have no doubt there could be future Crufts stars in our midst at Leeds!”
For further information on all of The Kennel Club’s ‘Have a Go’ shows, and to book a slot, visit: thekennelclub.org.uk/haveagodogshowing/. Bookings for the Leeds event are due to close on 20 July, subject to availability. Further details about Leeds City and District Canine Association championship show and the society can be found at: highampress.co.uk/shows/leeds-championship-dog-show-1
The Kennel Club stand will feature at the show, where experts from the organisation can answer questions and provide more information about dog showing and Kennel Club activities and services.
A specially-made video for owners interested in getting started in dog showing can be found at thekennelclub.org.uk/newtodogshowing