YORKSHIRE’S own Crufts is under way this weekend at Harewood House, between Leeds and Harrogate, putting on a three-day festival of talent.
A total of 1,000 dogs from around 160 breeds are expected to compete in the Leeds City and District Canine Association’s annual Leeds Championship Dog Show, with the ultimate prize being a chance to enter the real Crufts.
The home’s grounds are playing host to the event.
Taking place for the 64th time, the Kennel Club-licensed event got under way yesterday and continues today and tomorrow.
And if the early signs are anything to go by, organisers will be welcoming bumper crowds over the rest of the weekend.
Speaking to The Yorkshire Post yesterday, association secretary Liz Stannard said: “It is absolutely heaving – and Friday is normally our quietest day as a lot of people are at work.
“There’s a lovely atmosphere – people are competitive, of course, but I like to think of us as a friendly northern dog show.”
This year’s show has attracted more than 8,000 canine entries, covering around 170 different breeds. Their owners have travelled with them from as far afield as Belgium and Italy hoping to see their pet crowned one of the event’s top dogs.
Today’s contest categories are working, pastoral and terriers, featuring breeds such as border collie and Scottish terrier.
Tomorrow’s categories are utility and toys, with breeds on show including dalmatian and poodle.
Qualifying class winners at the event will be eligible for next year’s staging of the world-famous Crufts dog show. Judging begins today and tomorrow at 9am, with each day’s proceedings running until 6pm.
Visitors are allowed to bring their own dogs to the event. Go to www.highampress.co.uk for more details.
A Kennel Club Good Citizen Dog Scheme Ring will be set up at the show. The scheme is designed to promote responsible dog ownership for all types of dogs.