Why Crufts is like Marmite…

I’ll admit to having a ‘love/hate’ relationship with Crufts. It’s an event of extremes.

On the one hand, it’s an ideal place to see lots of dogs in a very short space of time. This gives prospective owners the chance to meet with dogs that have caught their eye, and chat to breeders and owners to find out what they are really like to live with (the dogs, not the owners!). It’s also a shopping bonanza – if it’s linked with dogs you can buy it… from wellies to brooches, from books to sculptures: it’s an aladdin’s cave of temptation.

On the other hand, the show represents the very worst of human interference in dog physiology. Noses that are too short for proper breathing, legs and hips so badly affected by breeding for appearance alone that the dog can no longer run. The powers-that-be tell us that they are actively discouraging the horrible impact of inbreeding and breeding for looks alone, but this may be too little, too late for the dogs already affected.

So, this year at Crufts once again I will go with expectations of seeing this change in action – let’s hope I’m not disappointed.

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