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'Eurodogshow Kortrijk 2021'
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nieuws - 20/11/2021
Eurodogshow Kortrijk 2021  -  BelgiŽ

honden fokkers en hond foto's door Karl Donvil
EURODOGSHOW Kortrijk 2021 It was so close, the show had almost to be canceled. Covid-19 was going so steep up in its 4th wave that the Belgium Government decided to organize a meeting with the crisis committee, two days prior to the weekend of the show. Whereat first everything looked OK, panic suddenly swept around. The first real Dogshow in Belgium since the start of the pandemic risked being forced to cancel. Fortunately, the government decided that the new restrictions would take effect on Monday after the show, but the main sponsor, Royal Canin, decided at the last minute, not to attend the show with representatives and managers in order not to add to the risk of spreading the disease. They only had their empty stand that was already set up earlier in the week. But for organizers and the owners of the 2124 dogs that were entered for the show, 237 less than the 2018 edition, it was a big relief that the show was not canceled at the last moment. Considering the circumstances, that was a nice result! The exhibitors came from 18 different countries, while the Dutch people remained more or less the same, the French and Germans were less numerous as usual. The brave British exhibitors who made the cross to Belgium, being no longer EU citizens and having more practical issues to overcome, were well represented with 54 of them, not including the several British Judges that were invited. It is a significant drop down from 98, but all by all not too bad if we take everything into account. The commercial trade stands dropped too, but not significantly, from 52 to 46. There were, on the other hand, 16 new non-commercial stands and that brings us all together to a serious improvement. Those non-commercial stands had everything to do with another new initiative that the Eurodogshow became legendary for, the "hall of experience". The Eurodogshow is recently officially recognized as a "fair" and not an event. That was their luck as the measures against Covid are much worse for an event as for a fair. Fairs were allowed on condition of having a valid covid passport to enter and wearing masks when walking around. While the show is still the most important part of the fair, the fair itself is focused on your experience with dogs and not only on the show part. It is a matter of attracting more people who are interested in dogs and not just show people. Information and education are what it is about. "Having dogs is more than shows. It is important that people get aware of what we can do with our dogs, how we can take better care of them and how we can make them take better care of us. We want to bring Animal Welfare and Familydogs more in the picture, and inform the people about it "says showmanager Mr. Joel Vanlerberghe. One hall was completely dedicated to this part of the show, with info stands where people can learn how to give massages to their dogs and what kind of cures there are. Other stands give information and workshops on how you can for example teach your dog to search for your missing children, or walk over stairs and cross little natural obstacles in the house or outside as training for the joints. No less than 140 people were following the initial search training and 4 persons subscribed for a training course for therapy dogs. During the 2018 edition, the Eurodogshow started with its "Go-to-Show" initiative. Unfortunately, there was a decline in interest too with only 50 participants. But with the Covid troubles, it is clear that people who are not involved in dog shows, but just want to have their dogs judged by a professional, checked by a vet and a behavioral therapist for the fun, will hesitate quicker whether to come or not. Mrs. Jacqui Hurley, from the UK, an established value and regular guest of this show, had a workshop Show Handling that was well attended. Children, in general, are always spoiled here, not only in the children village where they can play while mom and dad are showing the dog, but this year there was also a Crea Workshop that could be attended.

It is no secret that organizing a dog show is a big financial risk and in order to minimize the risks, it is of utmost importance to cut down all unnecessary expenses as far as the budget of the organization allows. However, Covid is the most unpredictable risk at the moment and can result in bankruptcy if the government has to impose more restrictions that often affect mass events. Eurodogshow has cut down the expenses in order to minimize that risk. No tribune for the spectators around the main ring was one of the more visible measures and it seemed that nobody missed it. There was enough space around the ring for everyone to stand or sit on chairs, and with Covid, it would be very difficult to disinfect the stairs enough to be safe. The Eurodogshow was announced on the regional TV stations and that resulted in a nice number of paying visitors. The number of visitors was around 7000 and that was enough to please the organizers.

33 Judges were invited from 14 different countries, and that was even 4 more than the 2019 edition. However, 10 of them were from Belgium, 8 were from the UK, and 4 from Ireland, both pretty cheap countries when it comes to travel costs, and in fact, the costs for the other judges were probably cheap too as they all came from nearby countries. The dogs-per-judging-day rate was not good nor bad with 48,27 d/jd. but with cheap countries in mind, this score deserves a bonus. Only one judge was absent and had to be replaced. 19 Judges were officiating one day only, but that did not prevented resulting in some very good scores. Mrs. Alenka Cerne from Slovenia was one of the more successful judges with 79 dogs on Saturday and another 44 on Sunday, 20 of them Cane Corsos. Mrs.Emma Achibald from Ireland had also 79 entries to judge on Saturday, 41 of them English Cocker Spaniels, but had a day off on Sunday. Mrs. Marja Talvitie from Finland judged Sighthounds on Saturday, 20 Salukis and 27 Afgan Hounds signed present. On Sunday she judged 93 dogs of Group 5 and the Miniature Spitzes were standing out with 38 specimens. Mr.Norman Deschuymere from Belgium had 136 dogs over the weekend and Mrs. Lisbeth Mach from Switzerland jumped around, as usual, to make her dogs run well in her ring. She welcomed 48 Great Danes on Sunday and had 106 dogs over the weekend. Mr.Frans Naassens from Belgium was invited to judge the Dachshunds, 85 altogether. Good breed scores were to be found in the ring of Mr.Howard Ogden from the UK had 33 Chinese Cresteds, Mr.Nemanja Jovanovic from Serbia had 40 Staffordshire Bull Terriers, Mr.Cuthbert Sheling from the UK was invited for the Labradors and had 41 to judge, Mrs.Karen Mc Devitt from Ireland had 25 Collies and 20 Shelties and Mr.Bas Bosch from Belgium had 41 French Bulldogs and 19 Pugs. On top of all this, we have Mr. Kardos Vilmos from Hungary with the best score of one day and the best score of the weekend. On Saturday he had 103 entries for him, 43 of the Weimaraners.

For Best In Show judge Mrs; Myriam Vermeire from Belgium was granted this honor. All Best of Groups had to be placed, something I repeatedly wrote about and keep on saying that it disgraces the winning of the Best of Groups that are placed 10th, 9th, 8th, etc. as if they lost instead of won. Her 3rd place went to the Papillion "Real Daydream Believer De Costalina", owned by Mrs.Kathleen Roosens, who we all know as the winner of Crufts in 2017. The dog was bred by her late father Jan and was entered in Junior Class to be judged by Mr.Ogden Howard and compete with 7 others. Mr.J-F Vanaken from Belgium gave him the Best of Group 9 award. Out of 25 Irish Red Setters, UK judge Mrs.Jenny Miller, picked "Garden Star's Irish Dublin" as her Best of Breed. This dog was entered in Champion Class, was bred by Lazlo Toth, and lives with Ilse Vermeiren from Belgium. He was Mr.Hans Van den Berg's choice for the Best of Group 7. The dog is 5 years old. The Winner of Best In Show was the Portugues Waterspaniel "Casa Hoya's Addicted to You", bred and owned by Mrs.Ilona Griffioen-VanBeek from The Netherlands. Only two were entered to be judged by Mr. Grzegorz Robak from Poland. He was later sent to the finals by Mrs. Alenka Cerne from Slovenia as Best of Group 8. This dog, a 3-year-old male, was entered in Champion Class.

Not only these finalists can look back on a successful show that felt almost like a normal one, but the whole Eurodogshow team led by Mr. Joel Vanlerberghe. In the meantime, only a couple of days later, new restrictions were taken again by the Belgian Government in the fight against Corona. As a result, the Brussels Dog Show and the Show of Mouscron were canceled, and probably more will follow. It will surely be a while before we will have another show that looks familiar. Let us cross our fingers.

Text, results, and photos by Karl DONVIL

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