For the third year running, the Kennel Club, is running its increasingly popular International Agility Festival at the East of England Showground on the 10th, 11th, and 12th August 2007.
Everyone is welcome; entries are still being taken to compete, and there will be plenty of space to get up close to the competition and watch this fascinating handler and dog sport, showcasing speed and skill.
Last year 1,600 dogs from 14 different countries competed over the weekend, in front of 2,000 people. The festival has doubled in size in just two years, so there are great expectations for 2007. In recognition of this, the site has been moved to fill a larger area of the showground, giving closer proximity to the camping ground for competitors.
The British World Championship team, some local to Peterborough, will be challenged by competitors from across the UK, and against agility teams from around the world, from South Africa to Japan.
The agility addicts will compete against the clock using their top handling skills to navigate their dog and themselves at top speed around the challenging courses.
Dogs large and small, from pedigrees with papers to dogs with none, will turn their four paws to the direction of strategically placed jumps, see saws, weaving poles, ‘A’ frames, tunnels and tyres, in the hope of taking away one of the many prestigious awards and prizes.
The special attraction of the festival is that it is open to any dog, as long as the dog is registered on one of the Kennel Club’s registers (Breed or Activity) - making it the only world-class agility competition to be open to pedigrees and crossbreeds alike. Everyone gets a chance to compete, as well as the opportunity of securing a place at Crufts, making it possible for overseas competitors to qualify for the first time.
Top judges, from both the UK and overseas, will be carefully assessing the partnership between handler and dog, and the technical ease used to complete the courses. Each course is set by the judge, giving variety whilst catering for the different levels and sizes of dogs.
An equal number of both crossbreeds and purebred dogs are expected, with the most popular breed of dog in Agility being the Border Collie.
The benefits of taking part in Agility with the Kennel Club is not only the fun competition and the chance to compete all over the world, but keeping fit, and enhancing the special bond with your dog, which will be happier and healthier for it.
Agility is the fastest growing dog sport in the world, and anyone can do it – it’s open for all ages and sizes of handler too! Competitions range from the International Young Handler, to the Kennel Club British Open.
Competitors spend the weekend camping on site, so aside from thousands of dogs, there are hundreds and hundreds of caravans and tents and upwards of 20 trade stands offering both human and dog goods, all adding to the festival fun!
Arden Grange, the pet food producers, will be supporting the festival for the third year running.