I don't usually get into politics here on my blog, but this is important. There's a whole buncha controversy at Crufts this year - the BBC isn't broadcasting the event, many major sponsors have pulled out, and they've lost the support of a couple of top non-profit organizations in the UK, including the RSPCA, and our Twitter buds DogsTrust - all for the good of the dog, IMHO!
All of this started with the BBC documentary "Pedigreed Dogs," which took an eye opening and hard look at breeding practices and standards of dogs. You can see all six parts of this revealing documentary here.
Since then the British Kennel Club has announced some major reforms to breed standards and accepted breeding practices for purebred dogs, a step in the right direction - but I hope, just the beginning.
It is also my hope that all this brings about some great change for the health and well being of dogs in the future, not only in the UK, but in the US, as well.
Because the BBC isn't broadcasting the event, Crufts has decided to live stream the event. You can see agility starting today (and all four days), as well as freestyle, police dog work, heelwork to music, flyball, obedience, confirmation and lots more. You may have to get up pretty early if you're on the East Coast for the morning agility sessions - 8:00 AM is 1:00 PM in Britain, and some agility starts at 8:30 AM Britain time. You can see the entire schedule on their site.
The agility finals will be held Sunday at 17:00, Britain time.
Also, Marcus Topps and his Border Collie, MACH2 Peak’s Juice, (Juice) will represent the AKC in agility at Crufts. Marcus and Juice were the 2008 GOLD medal winners in the Large Dog Individual competition at the 2008 FCI Agility World Championships in Helsinki, Finland. Two years ago Marcus and Juice competed in England at Crufts taking a first place in the Jumpers Class. Marcus and Juice will perform three times on Saturday, March 7.