2014 Show Report

Records fell at the fourth Essex Dog Day as 9000 people came through the entrance gates at Crix the Georgian Mansion in Hatfield Peverel accompanied by an amazing variety of dogs big and small, shaggy and smooth but all with tails wagging fit to bust. A record profit of £68,000 was raised for charity, comfortably beating all previous years.

Hundreds of fabulous fidos and handsome hounds vied for glory in the two show rings in classes ranging from Best Pedigree to The Dog Most Like It's Owner and even The Dog the Judge Would Most Like To Take Home. Others raced over straw bales or sped over seesaws and through tunnels in a variety of Agility, Scurry or Flyball competitions. The obedience ring was popular whilst other hounds plunged into the lake in the Gun Dog Scurry to recover lures against the stopwatch.

 

The cup for Best in Show was presented by The Lord Lieutenant of Essex, Lord Petre. Phoebe the winner is a 6 year old Westalier which is a cross between a Westie and a Prince Charles Cavalier and belongs to Kitty Leach of Thurston, near Bury St Edmunds. Her husband Paul accompanied Phoebe into the show ring because Kitty is a wheelchair user. 

"I didn't think I could own a dog but Phoebe has changed my life, not only being a great companion but also fetching the post. Although a wonderful lap dog she's very energetic and has worked as a PAT (Pets as Therapy) in the St Helena Hospice in Colchester"

And 407 dogs got together with their owners to smash the Guinness World Record for the most dogs in one place wearing a matching bandana. The record was beaten to raise awareness and money for Safer Places, the charity for the protection of victims of domestic abuse. Each dog was counted into the show ring and the numbers verified by a firm of accountants and a Justice of the Peace. Finally the whole record attempt was videoed to qualify for the record. Here is the moment that the record was achieved:

 

Some visitors came to shop for their pampered pooches in the many stalls selling doggie treats and beauty products and gourmet dog food. Others consulted the experts in the specialist "Meet the Breed" tents where dogs with exotic names such as Portuguese Podengo and Mexican Hairless were on show.

Loads of children took time out from dog watching to play on the fairground attractions, ride donkey rides or scale the climbing wall.

BBC Essex Radio DJ Dave Monk on the microphone welcomed a dazzling succession of demonstrations in the main ring. Jemima Parry Jones drew one of the biggest audiences as her huge birds of prey wheeled and swooped over the crowds in a breath taking display of falconry. David Seamark and his sheepdogs gave a master class in control of flocks of sheep and geese. As a contrast the Oblivion Allstars cheerleading and dance troupe thrilled with their gymnastic and acrobatic dancing:

 

Ian Twinley, owner of Crix and chairman of the organising committee commented "I promised Elaine Strutt when I bought the house that I would continue to hold charitable events here. Our generous sponsors have paid all the expenses of putting on this show so every penny raised today goes direct to The Essex Community Foundation and is distributed to local charities providing help and support to people in need."