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Chairmen hit back at deserters
Crufts 2009 will be bigger and better than ever!

THE KC Chairman Ronnie Irving and Chairman of Crufts, Eric Smethurst, have hit back at Crufts deserters, claiming that Crufts 2009 will be better than ever, following a year of amazement and anger in the world of dogs.

In From the Chairman in December’s Kennel Gazette, Mr Irving and Mr Smethurst ask breeders and exhibitors to show a united front and to show the world that Crufts will be, once again, a celebration of the dog: particularly the pedigree.

In the article, they state that the future of Crufts Show was ‘not in any way in doubt’. They go on to say that this needed to be said after ‘comment was made following various withdrawals by some of the show’s erstwhile friends and supporters – withdrawals which we personally consider to be largely self interested and perhaps even hypocritical. We can assure everyone yet again, that the position on Crufts’ future has not changed at all since that announcement was made’.
The article continues: ‘Crufts 2009 will take place as the celebration of all that is good about dogs in general, and about pedigree dogs in particular. Crufts is described, quite rightly, as an international canine event and a British national institution, one which he says we should all be proud of.

‘It brings together thousands of dogs and tens of thousands of those ordinary highly committed people who really do support dogs in lots of ways, and it celebrates the dog in all of its aspects. Are there a few breeds of dog at Crufts where exaggeration has gone too far? Yes – we have been pointing that out for several years and we have been attempting to do something about it. But does this apply to the majority of pedigree dogs? It definitely does not. And Crufts 2009 will give us all a great opportunity to show this to be the case.’

Reference is made to the heightened public awareness of canine health issues, which ‘had been well recognised by the Kennel Club and the Crufts Committee and that far more emphasis than ever would be concentrated on the issue at the 2009 event.’


They said that there would be features on ‘the science that has, for some years now, been helping breeders to counter various health conditions in certain breeds. Conferences will be held for all Crufts Judges stressing even more firmly than before, the responsibility that they undoubtedly have for ensuring that only obviously healthy and sound dogs of good temperament are rewarded with the accolade of a prize at Crufts.’

Breeders will be widely featured at the show and, in the absence of some of the general dog rescue charities from the event in 2009, the sterling work done by the many breed rescue organisations will be able to be given far greater prominence at Crufts 2009

Thanks and appreciation were given to all the breed clubs and the many breed enthusiasts that will part in Discover Dogs at Crufts, sponsored by the Mars company Royal Canin, which will be there as usual at Crufts 2009. The feeling was that Discover Dogs has a vital role in educating the general public on how, and from whom, to buy a puppy. It will also provide advice on how to select a breed that is right for the individual circumstances of each prospective puppy buyer involved. Finally the Kennel Club Accredited Breeder Scheme with its new added features, will also be given great prominence at the show.

They conclude: ‘The Kennel Club and the Crufts Committee hope that breeders and exhibitors will support Crufts as strongly as ever. Indeed we are hopeful that they may support Crufts 2009 in even greater numbers than in years gone by. This will show the public in general, and the critics of pedigree dogs in particular, that we dog people in the UK are proud of our dog scene here, and we are proud of all the dog shows that we hold week after week up and down the country. It will demonstrate that we dog breeders and enthusiasts are also proud of our record in taking the lead in improving canine health - a lead that is unassailed by any other group of people. We know that we have placed millions of happy, healthy pedigree dogs in millions of satisfied homes all over the country. Millions of families have dogs and the vast majority of these families get immense satisfaction, pleasure and benefit from their dogs in lots of different ways.

‘Let’s show the world just how proud we are of our dog hobby here in the UK by turning up at Crufts 2009 in larger numbers than ever before. We owe it to our dogs and to one another to prove that we hold the interest of pedigree dogs very much to the fore – and - what is more - that we are not ashamed to prove it.’