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The Wag and Bone Show

Windsor Racecourse came alive this year. Not with the sound of pounding hooves, but the excited yapping, barking, and panting of thousands of happy dogs.

This show in only its second year is truly becoming a major event, a place to come for fun games and enjoyment. Competitions included the "Loveable Rogue" "Waggiest Tail" and "Pup Idol".

This year’s show was held in aid of seven welfare charities which included Battersea Dogs Home, PDSA, Blue Cross, and Wood Green Animal Shelters. Well over 6000 people attended and it seemed about the same amount of dogs, waggy tails, wet noses and smiles were everywhere.

One of the features of the show was the Guinness World Record "Big Sit" already held by last years show, where 526 dogs sat still for two minutes without being touched or restrained.

This year that record was easily smashed with over 670 pooches expected to be ratified as a new record attempt.

"Animal Hospitals" star Shauna Lowry presented the equivalent of the canine Victoria Cross to ten amazing dogs and their owners. One that really stood out for me was Maelea Forrester from Surrey who won the Inspirational Dog and Owner award. Maelea lost her sight as a child through cancer, yet she has a dog walking business, rides horses and trains other people’s dogs, including her own called Boswell a beloved Italian Spinone, she has trained him to work as her guide dog.

With over seventy trade stands and numerous activities including a teach me arena, a shrink think tank for behavioural issues, relay races, toy bob, and scurries, this was a BIG show with plenty to see and do. A slight downside was that the day was extremely hot and humid, not enough thought had gone into watering facilities, something the organisers should look out for next year.

One of the lasting impressions I got from the show was six English Bull Terriers and their owners dressed as cowboys doing a line dancing routine. No one said the Wag and Bone show was supposed to be serious! But it certainly was fun.

Stan Rawlinson