Dog From Down Under Wins Top Canine Crown As PETA Crashes Crufts.

Photo: Australia Broadcasting Company. Viking, an Australian shepherd won the Cruft's title of world's goodest boy.
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An Australian shepherd dog named Viking has been crowned Best in Show at the 2024 Crufts dog competition in Birmingham, England.

The runner-up for Best in Show was a Jack Russell terrier from Japan named Zen.The three-year-old canine champion — co-owned by Melanie Raymand, John Shaw and Kerry Kirtley — saw off more than 19,000 other competing dogs from around the world to round up the show’s most coveted title on Sunday local time.

“Pinch me! This is everyone’s dream. Crufts is the [competition] we all want to win!” Ms Raymand, who was Viking’s handler at the show, said.

“My grandma started showing with Beagles and I feel like I’ve accomplished something she never managed. I’m hoping she is looking down on me.”

The other five finalists were: Elton, a French bulldog; Raffa, a papillon; Hendricks, a weimaraner; Neville, a Leonberger; and Getme, a grand basset griffon vendéen.

“All of the dogs and their owners and handlers should be incredibly proud to have taken part in such a momentous final,” Ms Kerfoot said.

“It really is an incredible achievement, and one we are sure they’ll treasure for years to come.”

But not all was treats and walkies at the famous dog show, as animal activists threw a bone in the works with protests.

On the final day of Crufts, which took place from March 7 to March 10, protesters holding up a “Boycott Breeders” sign were removed from the show’s arena.


Animal rights organisation PETA UK has claimed responsibility for the “disruption”.

“Crufts glorifies the breeding of deformed animals,” it said in a social media statement.

“The grotesque standards set by The Kennel Club [the group behind Crufts] promote features that lead to long-term health issues like epilepsy, heart disease, brachycephalic syndrome, and hip dysplasia among others.”

The organisation also accused Crufts of “perpetuat[ing] the homeless dog crisis by encouraging impulse purchases of trendy breeds, neglecting the loveable pups in rescue centres”.

A spokesperson for The Kennel Club told the Independent protesters were “swiftly removed” by security to “ensure the safety and welfare of the dogs and owners”.

“Crufts is a unique platform which educates millions of visitors, and viewers on Channel 4, about how to get the right dog for your lifestyle, so that all dogs — whether rescue dogs or puppies — have a home for life,” they said–indicating that the protestors were barking up the wrong tree.

“We celebrated hundreds of rescue dogs at Crufts this year, and have a dedicated rescue dog area, as well our Discover Dogs zone, which help would-be owners to find the right dog or puppy for them and make responsible choices about this life-long decision.”

Source: Australian Broadcasting Corporation.
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