WorlDog > One girl and her collie take on the world – and win
A TEENAGER and her pet dog have beaten competition from across the globe at the world’s most famous dog show.
Eleanor Cary’s ten-year-old border collie, Zak, has won the Young Kennel Club Intermediate class at Crufts.
The 14-year-old, of Elm Grove, Thorpe Bay, faced international competition in Zak’s class, for dogs owned by people aged up to 25.
She said their win came as a complete surprise.
Shoeburyness High School pupil Eleanor explained: “To be honest, I never expected to make it to Crufts, so when I heard me and Zak had qualified, I just thought I’d go there and have a bit of fun.
“When it came to the end of the competition, I was in the last six. As they started announcing the final places, I wasn’t expecting to win, so I just started stroking Zak’s coat to say well done to him.
“Then I looked up and they were saying I’d won. It was amazing. I just started jumping up and down on the spot. Zak got a lot of sweets for winning.”
In the competition, at the NEC Arena, in Birmingham, the pair faced a range of challenges designed to test Zak’s nimbleness and obedience.
Eleanor said she was especially proud to have won at Crufts, since her longtime inspiration, her dog trainer grandmother, Christine Cary, was ill at the moment.
She added: “It was my grandma who first took me to dog shows when I was younger and has helped me train Zak.
“Sadly, she had a stroke recently, so she couldn’t finish his training with me or attend the show.
“Luckily, some of her friends who are dog trainers, too, helped me out before the show and now I can make her proud.”
Eleanor says she would like to pursue a career in dog training when she leaves school. [Echo]