A Callington Community College student will be competing with her dog at Crufts this coming weekend.
The world’s greatest dog show will be returning from March 9 to 12, where over 24,000 dogs will head to the NEC in Birmingham for a long weekend of celebrating dogs of all shapes and sizes.
And 11-year-old Maisie Wiltshire from Ive will be competing to bring home the gold with her dog Denis.
Maisie’s story begins after moving to live with her nan, Carolyn Newton, over lockdown in Spreyton, West Devon, following some issues with living at home.
Maisie, who had always feared dogs, soon met Denis, a seven-year-old Border Collie who was one of her nan’s eight dogs, some of which she uses to compete.
After overcoming her fear, Maisie and Denis soon became inseparable travelling to shows up and down the country competing in agility and hoopers, a dog sport where the dogs run through and around a series of tunnels, hoops and barrels as fast as possible.
Soon, the pair qualified to compete in Crufts.
Maisie explained: “I am so excited, I’ve never done anything like it before”
The show will see pedigree dogs from all over the globe will compete across four days to be awarded the coveted Best in Show prize; the UK’s top crossbreeds will vie for the judge’s attention to be named Scruffts Family Crossbreed Dog of the Year; the crowds will find out which four-legged hero has been voted the winner of The Kennel Club Hero Dog Award; and dogs from around the world will battle it out in agility, flyball and obedience competitions.
The number of breeds competing continues to grow, adding to the diversity of the event. This year, Bavarian Mountain Hounds will be shown in their own classes for the first time, where six dogs are entered.
Visitors can also meet more than 200 different breeds at the Discover Dogs booths and learn more about what makes each of these dogs unique, while Kennel Club Breed Rescue organisations will also be available to educate visitors on their work in rehoming and helping every dog find their forever home.